Operation Iraqi Stephen

A blog post on the Web site of The Colbert Report announces the news with an exclamatory flourish: “Breaking: Stephen Colbert Is In Iraq!”

And, you know, seriously. Colbert, per the post, “has deployed to Iraq on a USO tour entitled ‘Operation Iraqi Stephen: Going Commando’ and will tape and perform shows in front of the troops.” This will make The Colbert Report, apparently, “the first TV show in USO history to produce a week of shows in a combat zone.”

It will also make the show, one has to assume, an extra challenge in the satire department: it’s one thing to play to a studio audience in New York; it’s another to play to a roomful of active-duty troops. (And the comedian isn’t messing around: his guests will include, apparently, Barham Saleh, the Deputy Prime Minister of Iraq, and Ray Odierno, commanding general of US forces in Iraq—among many others.) But, then, if anyone can find the truthiness in a USO show, it’s probably Colbert.

Here he is, announcing the “secret news” of his “deployment”:

The Colbert ReportMon - Thurs 11:30pm / 10:30c
Exclusive - Where and When Is Stephen Going to the Persian Gulf - Iraq Announcement
Colbert Report Full EpisodesPolitical HumorKeyboard Cat

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Megan Garber is an assistant editor at the Nieman Journalism Lab at Harvard University. She was formerly a CJR staff writer.