A peculiar practice by US Presidents is the tradition of pardoning a turkey in the lead-up to the nation’s Thanksgiving Day marked in late November and on other dates in Canada and in some Caribbean islands.
The presidential pardon symbolically saves the turkey from being cooked and eaten on the day that originated as a time for early settlers gathered to give thanks for the annual harvest and the achievements of the preceding year.
This year President Donald Trump broke with tradition by extending the pardoning to a controversial ally in a top-secret phone call. Here The Bug publishes a leaked transcript of Mr Trump’s phone call to the President of Turkey, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.
Trump: Hello, Mr Turkey?
Erdogan: Who is this? And by the way, it’s Mr President.
Trump: Yes, that’s right it’s Mr President here.
Erdogan: No, it’s Mr President here.
Trump: Well, that’s a coincidence. So, anyway, I’m ringing to grant you a pardon.
Trump: Yeah. That’s right.
Erdogan: What’s right?
Trump: A pardon.
Erdogan: No, I mean: Pardon, I didn’t hear you properly.
Trump: Oh, ok. I said I’m giving you a pardon.
Trump: It’s Thanksgiving Holiday tomorrow, and it’s a tradition. As President I get to pardon a turkey.
Erdogan: Really? I thought Thanksgiving is on the 28 November. It’s celebrated on the fourth Thursday of November from what know of my US history.
Trump: Not in Canada.
Trump: Yep, Canada. It’s part of America. Betcha didn’t know that.
Erdogan: I certainly didn’t. So what’s the pardon for?
Trump: Basically it’s for killing a lot of our former allies who put their lives on the line to help the US and its allies tackle ISIS terrorists.
Erdogan: The Kurds.
Trump: Yeah, that’s right. Those turds. We don’t need ’em anymore, so fuck ’em.
Erdogan: Well thank you Mr President and thanks also for getting US troops out of the way so quickly and allowing us to start attacking and killing sooner rather than later.
Trump: It’s a pleasure. By the way I read you’ve also threatened to send a wave of illegal immigrants across Europe if they get in the way of your very sensible plans to kill people in Syria.
Erdogan: Yes, if they call it an occupation I’ll do that.
Trump: Hmmm, ever thought of building a wall? A big beautiful wall. Or a fence or some type of curtain, maybe made of iron. I’m sure that’d go down well in the rest of Europe.
Erdogan: Oh, I’m not looking at doing anything like that. At least not just yet. Right now I’m just bidin’ my time.
Trump: Biden you say? Could you do me a favour?
(18-minute gap in recording)
Erdogan: Thank you Mr President.
Trump: Ok, see ya.