Two countries are at war, Albekistan and Uzbania. The leader of the Albekistanian army asks, "Who ___ me?". The Uzbanian army's leader replies, "I ___ you!" She is promptly shot by her own army for being a traitor. Ten days later, the Uzbanian army intercepts and decrypts the following communications between an Albekistanian general and the Albekistanian president:

Dear President Parthizi,

Our spies have been unable to determine the reason why General Grimmith was shot.
Evidence shows that nearly all Uzbanians consider her a traitor, but our records indicate
that Grimmith remained steadfastly loyal. In any case, we must comb our ranks rigorously
for possible infiltration - our upcoming military action is of critical importance to
winning this war.

General Gorlathon

After six more months of war, the remorseful Uzbanian warriors are routed because of the loss of morale and the death of their most competent general.

___ consists of three words. What were the words, and why was General Grimmith shot?

  • $\begingroup$ I swear I've come across a puzzle almost exactly like this before somewhere on Puzzling... I can't put my finger on it but it rings a faint bell... It's going to nag at me until I either find a duplicate or solve this one! :) $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Nov 7, 2019 at 18:56
  • $\begingroup$ @Stiv I guess great minds think alike, since I came up with this on my own :P $\endgroup$
    – Avi
    Nov 7, 2019 at 18:57
  • 1
    $\begingroup$ Maybe it was a dream I had... ;-) $\endgroup$
    – Stiv
    Nov 7, 2019 at 18:58

1 Answer 1


Perhaps the three words were

will come to or some variation of that. (From OP, the intended phrase was will fight with, but the explanation remains the same.)

The conversation would go thusly:

Gorlathon: Who will come to me?
Grimmith: I will come to you!

In Grimmith's view, all she is doing is

declaring her intention to start a battle with Gorlathon.

But in the Uzbanian soldiers' view, her comment might be misinterpreted as meaning

that she will cross over and join the other side i.e. "come to" Albekistan. Thus, they would believe her to be a traitor and promptly shoot her.

Previous incorrect attempts:

- will surrender to: Grimmith wouldn't say she surrenders because she's loyal and competent.

  • $\begingroup$ Incorrect - somebody who is loyal would never say rot13("V jvyy fheeraqre gb lbh!"), nor any variation of that $\endgroup$
    – Avi
    Nov 7, 2019 at 19:48
  • $\begingroup$ Oh, I just had another idea, gimme a moment... $\endgroup$
    – HTM
    Nov 7, 2019 at 19:50
  • $\begingroup$ Correct! The precise intended answer was rot13(V "jvyy svtug jvgu" lbh, orpnhfr vs lbh "svtug jvgu" gur rarzl, lbh pbhyq rvgure or svtugvat ntnvafg gurz, be svtugvat ba gurve fvqr nf n genvgbe) $\endgroup$
    – Avi
    Nov 7, 2019 at 19:57

Your Answer

By clicking “Post Your Answer”, you agree to our terms of service and acknowledge you have read our privacy policy.

Not the answer you're looking for? Browse other questions tagged or ask your own question.