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Volume 7364

Operation Kaji Freedom:
A Parody
by Alan Hanson 

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Operation Kaji Freedom:
A Parody
by Alan Hanson
In the fall of 1934, John Clayton, Lord Greystoke, was travelling north of Lake Rudolf in West Africa, as recorded by Edgar Rice Burroughs in Tarzan the Magnificent. Operating as an intelligence operative of the British government, he was there at the request of an emperor (probably Ras Tafari of Ethiopia) to look into an alleged attempt by a European power (probably Mussolini’s Italy) to bribe a native chief. 

Clayton had not intended to enter Kaji country, located northwest of the lake on a high plateau above the falls of Mafa. However, events conspired to take him there, and once there, further events prompted him to launch “Operation Kaji Freedom,” a heretofore little known action that surgically removed the government of a foreign country. Some intelligence sources are now suggesting that the following report, written by Lord Greystoke following his covert actions in Kaji country, served as the model for a similar operation conducted in the Middle East in 2003.

*     *     *     *     *
Operation Kaji Freedom
A British Intelligence Report
by John Clayton, Lord Greystoke
*     *     *     *     *

In the 1930's the inhabitants of the Kaji plateau were caught between the excesses of the Kaji government and that of her sister regime, the Zuli, an ethnically similar tribe to the east. My first knowledge of the evil dictators in this region came after I recovered a letter from the body of Lord Mountford near the border of Kaji country on 10 October 1934. Of course, the suspected murder of a fellow British official demanded further investigation. More information was revealed to me by Stanley Wood, an American held captive by the Kaji. Finally, to complete this profile of the Kaji and Zuli regimes, I entered the country myself to gather intelligence. The picture that developed from these sources was a horrific one. Two dictators, twin brothers, ruled the region through terror, torture, murder and fear.

Although the Kaji military fought with ferocity, it was clear that the dictator Mafka was in complete control. In his letter, Lord Mountford wrote, “He is the power, he alone.” In constant fear of assassination, Mafka lived in a castle continually guarded by Kaji warriors. Any white men who entered Kaji country were immediately captured and imprisoned. All foreign Africans who strayed across the border were killed or enslaved on Mafka’s standing order. All of this, of course, was in defiance of international law and League of Nations mandates.

Mafka’s cruelty toward his own people was no secret. By the dictator’s decree, all male babies born within country were destroyed, as were all black babies, regardless of gender. By Mafka’s twisted logic, Lord Mountford’s wife was murdered because she was a white woman who failed to give birth to a white son. I saw for myself evidence of Mafka’s acts of mass murder — grisly trophies, the shriveled heads of women hung from the outer walls of the palace. Mafka actually showed me the severed head of an Englishman named Lord, saying, “Thus die the enemies of Mafka.

Mafka’s brother was every bit as ghastly. Woora had glowing eyes that smoldered and burned like twin pits of Hell. Like his brother, Woora had mumified heads on display in his palace. He not only ordered acts of murder and torture, he personally participated in and reveled in such acts. For his own sport, he had his own citizens fed alive to the lions. He personally tortured enemies, as shown by his attempt to put my eyes out with a red-hot poker. He hoped to torture me to death and then eat my brains.

Like most dictators, Woora was ruthless with his political enemies. The following testimony by a captured Englishman, who Woora later had killed, bears witness to this. “Woora had heard that some of the men had banded together for the purpose of escaping. The plan included assassinating Woora … [He] believed that I was the instigator of the plot, and so he wanted to destroy me. Of course, he could do that at any time he wished, but he is a wily old devil and was trying to hide the fact that he had any suspicions. In this way he hoped to trap all of the plotters eventually, killing them one by one on some pretext or another.”

The Clear and Present Danger of the Kaji and Zuli Regimes
Clearly, the Kaji and Zuli people needed liberation from these two cruel dictators. They served Mafka and Woora only through fear and coersion. At the time of my visit there, the Kaji plateau was clearly a land of horror and iniquity.

Still, I might not have interfered in Kaji society were it not also obvious that the twin dictators posed a threat to their neighbours in the region. Tribes were so frightened by rumours of the barbarous inhabitants on the plateau, that they refused to live in the area. Anyone who lingered too close to the border disappeared, never to return, and reports of the terrifying practices of the Kaji regime were part of the folklore of their nearest neighbours.

Even so, I considered overlooking the threat the Kaji dictators posed to their own people and their nearest neighbours. But when it became apparent to me that both Mafka and Woora had the ability to export their brand of terrorism to far-off nations, I felt compelled to intervene. With my own eyes I saw the great diamond of Mafka and the great emerald of Woora. I immediately recognized them for what they were — weapons of mass destruction (WMDs). With the stones’ occult powers, the evil dictators controlled the behaviour of their own citizens, demanding obedience and loyalty at the threat of death. Using the power of his stone, Mafka could reach out and kill anyone who tried to escape his country, as he did with Lord Mountford.

If the twin dictators could completely control their own populations with these huge gems, I knew they could use them someday to control and terrorize the peace-loving, democratic, capitalist nations of the world. Clearly, such terrorist states could not be allowed to threaten the world, and so I concluded I must act at once. Since I knew I could not convince Mafka and Woora to give up their WMDs through negotiation, diplomacy was out of the question. The only answer was regime change — sudden, complete and necessarily violent.

The Death of the Dictators
Woora was the first to fall. Due to my connections with a secret British operative in the Zuli village, Woora was assassinated on 31 October 1934, and the great emerald came into my possession. News of the dictator’s death sent the Zuli warrior women rushing into the streets to spread the happy tidings. Soon thereafter a giant statue of Woora in the village square was pulled down and dragged through the streets.

Then, after capturing Mafka and annexing the great diamond, I continued the process of regime change by compelling representatives of the Kaji and Zuli military forces to appear before me. In the following policy statement on 3 November 1934, I explained that removing the dictators was for their own good.

The power of Mafka is gone. All your lives he has held you in the hollow of his hand. He has made you fight for him. He has taken the best fruits of your conquests. He has held you prisoners here. You feared and hated him, but most of all you feared him. You are free now from the rule of Woora and Mafka. Woora is dead. I shall turn Mafka over to you presently to do with as you wish. His power is gone.
Since Mafka’s crimes were against his own people, I felt they should have jurisdiction over him. I had hoped he would face a military tribunal before being executed, but so great was the loathing and fear his own military felt for him, that they dispensed with the façade of a trial and killed him on the spot. Mafka died within minutes following my statement on 3 November.

A New Kaji Regime
After removing the existing government, and before leaving the region, I felt obligated to restore authority on the plateau. Obviously, the new government had to be one that would honour the rights of the Kaji and Zuli people and not be a threat to their neighbours. After ordering the release of all political prisoners and slaves, I had the Kaji and Zuli military leaders select three representatives to form an interim government.

I announced that the ruling triumvirate would be entrusted with the great diamond, with the admonition that it be used only for the good of the citizenry. Robert van Eyk, representing the American government in the transfer of power, issued the following statement supporting my decision to return the diamond to the Kaji.

 The diamond will be plenty for both the Kaji and the Zuli to carry out their plans to go out into the world. They’ll be cheated out of most of it anyway, but they’ll get their wish.
Van Eyk and I agreed that I should retain possession of the great emerald and remove it from Kaji country. The combined power of the two stones would have been more than the new fledgling government could have handled safely.

In the evening of 3 November 1934, then, I exited the Kaji plateau and headed north on my orignal assignment, a top secret report on which is being filed under separate cover. It took but seven days for me to arrange the death of both dictators and to effect regime change in Kaji country. I recommend that the British government follow up my efforts by sending a military contingent to maintain the peace and rebuild the Kaji and Zuli infrastructure, which was damaged during the regime change. Surely the future permanent government of the country needs to be shaped into one complying with the guiding principles of the British Empire.

As for a public relations strategy, I recommend that the British government address all press inquiries with the mantra, “The world is a safer place without Mafka and Woora in power.” Stress the fact that they killed thousands of their own people.

To Remain Top Secret

Of course, returning the great diamond to the new Kaji leaders was unthinkable. The whole purpose of the regime change was to remove WMD capability from this volatile region. I deceived the Kaji leaders, as I did the American Van Eyk, into thinking I was returning the diamond because the Kaji and the Zuli would have rebelled against an outside nation taking their country’s only source of wealth and power. 

When I first took the great emerald, the Zuli people had turned into an ugly, murderous mob. Undoubtedly, open looting of Woora’s former palaces took place at that time. I knew the Kaji people would have reacted in a similar way had I announced I was removing the great diamond from their country. I gave them a harmless copy of the diamond and was long gone with the real stone before they realized the deception. Of course, by the time the new government leaders realized what I had done, it had become politically impossible for them to admit publicly that they had been duped.

In my judgment, I had no choice but to retain possession of both stones. After all, they were the “smoking gun,” the WMDs, the proof justifying the violent regime change to the rest of the world. At this time both the great diamond and the great emerald are stored in a secure place at my African estate. They will remain there until the British government either decides to destroy them or finds a way to use them for the greater good of the Empire.


John Clayton, Lord Greystoke
24 January 1935

From Our ERB Online Bibliography
A Collector's Hypertexted and Annotated Storehouse of Encyclopedic Resources
Tarzan the Magnificent
ERB: The War Years

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