"In what seemed designed as a display of technological advance," reports The New York Times' Alan Cowell from Paris, "Iran said on Wednesday that it had fired a rocket into space carrying living organisms--a rat, two turtles and worms." Thus the Iranian government--in a move ridiculed by foreign policy wonks and humorists alike--seems to have adopted a tactic favored by none other than Glenn Beck. We're speaking, of course, of using small animals to make a point.

In October, Glenn Beck convincingly faked tossing a live frog into boiling water. He was attempting to illustrate an analogy about the American people ignoring the stealthy creep of President Obama's socialist agenda. (According to the phony metaphor, energetically debunked by James Fallows, frogs won't jump out of water that is slowly brought to a boil.)

It's unclear if Beck's intended audience got the message, but Tehran seems to have taken a lesson: to send a message to the West, employ tiny critters. Don't tell PETA--they've only just gotten over Groundhog Day.