Tuesday August 27th 2013 Tim Candler
The Battle of Gazallah was fought in June of
1942. It was a victory for Rommel's Afrika Korps. By my reckoning
sometime at the end of August 1942, JHC had been transferred from
interrogation by German Military Intelligence, the Abwehr, as it was
then called, to a transit camp in Southern Italy which was under the
control of the Italian Military. Of the transit camps, there are several
dozen possibilities and no hard evidence, so I have invented Campo XL5.
It is named after the puppet Steve Zodiac's space ship, a truly alarming
children's television program from sometime in the 1960's. Even though a
person could see the puppet's strings, he quickly learned to distrust
any form of Exploration of Space that includes music.
JHC's Campo XL5 was poorly
managed. Latrines hadn't been dug, food sparse, water bad, Red Cross parcels
diverted to the black market. Men died of dysentery, hunger and from wounds,
and it was while in that Transit Camp, JHC learned to dislike Italians,
sometimes with an overwhelming intensity. At the end of August 2013,
one of my dreams is to recreate Campo XL5, then train an army of young
Vegetarian Spiders, who at my command will march into the territory of our
Valiant Eggplant, round up every last Hoppy Bug and lock them up in Campo
XL5, where they will be subjected to re-education, taught to accompany a
piano with violin, and weaned off their addiction to the delicate leaves of
Eggplant. And I am sure Fascists everywhere will approve.