Nov 29, 4:28 PM EST
NASHVILLE (AP) -- In a stunning development that has rattled both Music City and Langley, Virginia, Nashville hitmaker Toby Keith revealed today that he is actually a Russian agent named Yuri Stankopov, and his entire career has been a deep-cover operation to discredit the United States internationally while also promoting public support for budget-draining military boondoggles in Iraq and Afghanistan.
Keith/Stankopov, 51, reveals that he was born in what was then Leningrad, USSR, and was recruited by the KGB in his early 20's. (After the Soviet Union collapsed, the KGB program that employed Stankopov continued under Russia's new spy agency, the SVR) The young Russian then spent several years in Moscow training to mimic and exploit the basest, most repugnant stereotypes of American redneck culture.
In 1991, armed with only a guitar and a fictional Oklahoma back story, Agent Stankopov was planted in Nashville, TN to begin his assignment: A career in Country music. After establishing success in this entertainment field, Keith was to begin incorporating the belligerent jingoism and political ignorance that the singer is now so well-known for.
When asked why he's admitting this today, Keith says, "I just can't take it anymore. I need to clear my conscience. I never expected the American public to be this brain-dead and gullible. It's like taking candy from a baby. There's no challenge in it anymore. The stupidity in this country astounds me. If I have to keep this charade up any longer, I think I'll lose my fucking mind... Look, I've done my part for Mother Russia. The American empire is in irreversible decline. Now I'm ready to quit and get the fuck out of here. I'd really like to see my mother in Viborgskiy before she dies."
When asked what the Russian operative's specific goals were, he said, "It was twofold. One - To make Americans look as ugly, arrogant, and xenophobic as possible to the rest of the world, thus turning world opinion against the US and in favor of Russia and her allies. Two - To increase American public support for costly military misadventures overseas. That's what all those flag-waving ass-kicking bullshit songs were about. You know, 'we'll stick a boot in your ass, it's the American way'. I'm particularly ashamed of that one. But it did the job, didn't it? Thousands of your men died needlessly while your treasury was decimated. There's a reason they call Afghanistan the graveyard of empires. You guys suckered us into that quagmire back in the 70's and 80's. So we figured we'd do the same to you. I just didn't think it would be so damn easy. You dumb-ass Americans have the memory of a goldfish."
But what about the music? As Toby Keith, the Russian agent has sold over 50 million records in his two-decade career and charted twenty #1 Country hit singles. "Honestly, I can't stand playing that crap. I never put a minute's thought into any of the songs I wrote. I was trained how to use the contemporary country songwriting formula and that's what I did. I just kept writing the same shit over and over again and re-packaging it into a new album every year. Take, for example, my big hit song last year, 'Red Solo Cup'. If you threw a microphone in front of any average 10-year old, I guarantee you they could improvise something on the spot that's just as good. And just as intelligent. Yet you Americans bought that shit by the truckload like it was something special. In Russia we have a saying - What the fuck?!?"
Because Stankopov, as Keith, engaged in no actual espionage during his 20-year assignment in the US, no charges will be brought against him. He plans to return permanently to Russia by the end of next week. The singer's label, Universal Music, could not be reached for comment.
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