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The Puny Wars, also known as the Pwnic Wars, were a series of conflicts beginning circa 264 BCE, between the ancient cities of Rome, Carthage, and Des Moines, Iowa. Since then there have been over 347 separate Puny Wars, the last one as recently as April 2003, between Des Moines and pop singer Britney Spears.
The unprecedented length and persistence of the conflict, as well as its name, stemm from the fact that the wars have all been fought almost entirely by midgets, with occasional mercenary assistance from friendly dwarves and several people who are just really, really short. In the early years of the conflict, the diminutive size of the combatants made it difficult for spear-throwers and archers to hit them, resulting in an unusually low casualty rate, even by modern video game standards. In recent years, however, the midgets' size advantage has largely been negated by the use of carpet bombing.
Epunysode 1: The Puny Menace
The First Puny War began when Subcompact Hamilcar, a Carthaginian mini-general, attacked Rome's territories in Spain after eating tainted paella at a local restaurant. The fighting, though bloody, ended in a stalemate, with each side declaring victory and accusing the other of lift-wearing. An uneasy peace lasted only until the two rivals were able to rebuild their damaged fleets of Revell molded-plastic battleships.
Epunysode 2: Attack of the Runts
As soon as he had grown tall enough to reach the doorknob, Carthaginian Minor-General Hannibal The Smaller, son of Subcompact Hamilcar, brought a fully-equipped army of little people back to Spain, along with several trained gerbils which he hoped to use to terrorize his Roman opponents. Though many in his army died during the treacherous crossing of a speed bump, Hannibal the Smaller managed to defeat the Romans and their Des-Moines based insurance salesmen at Lower Cannae, and soon went on to wreak havoc throughout a 1,200 square-inch area of the Italian peninsula.
Epunysode 3: Revenge of the Shrimp
In spite of Hannibal the Smaller's remarkable success, Rome survived, rebuilt its devastated front porch, and later went on to destroy Carthage completely with a rolled-up newspaper in the Third (3rd) Puny War (soon to be released on DVD). But despite Carthage's complete destruction and the total subjugation of its people (which, coincidentally, did end the so-called "Punic Wars" which took place around this same time), the Puny Wars had only just begun.
Epunysode 4: A New Microscope
In roughly 67 AD, a rebellious band of midget circus-gladiators under the leadership of an ex-slave named Shorticus attacked the Roman Empire in what is now considered to be the Fourth Puny War, though at the time it was referred to simply as The Tiny Slave Revolt. Once again, the Italian peninsula suffered significant damage, especially to its valuable mouldings, door kicks, and banzai trees. But once again, Rome prevailed, this time by tricking the rebels into concentrating all of their forces in a suicidal attack on a heavily-armed fortress which had been cleverly camouflaged as a glandular growth-treatment production facility.
Epunysode 5: The Empire Can't Find the Strike Zone
The Fifth Puny War, in 479 AD, pitted Rome against a mini-barbarian horde led by Attila the Thumb Puppet, a bloodthirsty, yet surprisingly cheerful Minigoth whose relationship to the original Carthaginians is unknown. Rome could have easily defeated the new enemy, but by this time it had grown corrupt politically, and its military had lost both their morale and their discipline. Moreover, they had been trained for centuries not to "look down in the face of the enemy," so that when Attila's armies attacked, they were evidently not noticed until it was too late.
Epunysode 6: Return of the Pygmi
Known as the "Most Surreal" Puny War, the Sixth outbreak of the conflict pitted a plucky band of Carthaginian Ewoks against a large army of Imperial vacuum cleaners. Even the date of this conflict is unknown, since much of it took place in another galaxy. However, under the brilliant leadership of Ewok General Furball, the Ewoks completely annihilated the Imperial forces, only to find that their flight back to Earth was cancelled due to a sit-down strike among disaffected spaceport workers.