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Looking Ahead With Jake Tapper

ABC News senior White House correspondent Jake Tapper on President Obama’s second term, the Petraeus shocker and getting out of Afghanistan.

President Barack Obama leaves the podium after making a statement to reporters about the suspicious packages found on U.S. bound planes in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, Friday, Oct. 29, 2010. Pictured in front row, from left to right: Matt Spetalnick of Reuters, Jake Tapper of ABC News, Darlene Superville of the Associated Press, Chip Reid of CBS News, Wendell Goler of Fox News, and Chuck Todd of NBC News. (AP)

President Barack Obama leaves the podium after making a statement to reporters about the suspicious packages found on U.S. bound planes in the James Brady Press Briefing Room at the White House in Washington, Friday, Oct. 29, 2010. Pictured in front row, from left to right: Matt Spetalnick of Reuters, Jake Tapper of ABC News, Darlene Superville of the Associated Press, Chip Reid of CBS News, Wendell Goler of Fox News, and Chuck Todd of NBC News. (AP)

Uproar in Washington.  Over David Petraeus and his extramarital affair.  Over General John Allen, top US commander in Afghanistan, and his pile of “inappropriate” e-mails with Jill Kelley.  Over Benghazi.  Over the fiscal cliff.  Meanwhile, on the ground in Afghanistan, U.S. troops continue the longest war in American history.

ABC White House correspondent Jake Tapper covers it all.  In a new book he looks at the stunning price paid by volunteer soldiers in Afghanistan’s mountains as the nation rolls on.

This hour, On Point:  Jake Tapper on the nation and its outpost in Afghanistan.

-Tom Ashbrook

Guest

Jake Tapper, senior White House correspondent for ABC News. Author of “The Outpost: An Untold Story of American Valor.”

From Tom’s Reading List

The Wall Street Journal “The protagonist of “The Outpost” is a place: Combat Outpost Keating, named for a U.S. officer killed there. Mr. Tapper follows the fortunes of the base, its defenders and their families from its conception in the summer of 2006 until Oct. 6, 2009, when B-1 bombers dropped multiple tons of ordnance to obliterate it. Like the troops it describes, the book toggles wrenchingly back and forth between the crags of Afghanistan and the home front, where wives, parents, and children are depicted awaiting, and dealing with, terrible news. Photographs and emails they and surviving troops shared with Mr. Tapper are scattered through the book, adding to its intimacy.”

The Minneapolis Star-Tribune “As in several other recent books — for example, last year’s “Lions of Kandahar” — “The Outpost” is filled with stories of brave, dedicated, intelligent young Americans put in untenable positions by leaders who at best seem stupid and at worst uncaring.”

Excerpt

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  • Wm_James_from_Missouri

    I would like to see the US lead by example. I would like to see the US create an environment for its’ citizens that would be the envy of the world, once more. So much so, that we, denizens would never have or feel the need to leave it. So much so, that all the world would choose to be “just like us”. Isn’t that the Greatest Art of War?

  • Fiscally_Responsible

    i received this very interesting email from a friend.  It is very easy to see why people have such a low opinion of Congress. They pass laws that apply to the rest of us while exempting themselves from these same laws.

    Children of congress members do not have to pay back their college student loans How nice for them! Monday on Fox news they learned that the staffers of Congress family members are exempt from having to pay back student loans. This will get national attention if other news networks will broadcast it. When you add this to the below, just where will all of it stop? 35 States file lawsuit against the Federal Government Governors of 35 states have filed suit against the Federal Government for imposing unlawful burdens upon them. It only takes 38 (of the 50) States to convene a Constitutional Convention. This will take less than thirty seconds to read. If you agree, please pass it on. This is an idea that we should address. For  too long we have been too complacent about the workings of Congress. Many citizens had no idea that members of Congress could retire with the same pay after only one term, that they specifically exempted themselves from many of the laws they have passed (such as being exempt from any fear of prosecution for sexual harassment) while ordinary citizens must live under those laws. The latest is to exempt themselves from the Healthcare Reform. in all of its forms. Somehow, that doesn’t seem logical We do not have an elite that is above the law. I truly don’t care if they are Democrat, Republican, Independent or whatever. The self-serving must stop. If each person that receives this will forward it on to 20 people, in three days, most people in The United States of America will have the message. This is one proposal that really should be passed around. Proposed 28th Amendment to the United States Constitution: “Congress shall make  no law that applies to the citizens of the United States that does not apply equally to the Senators and/or Representatives; and, Congress shall make no law that applies to the Senators and/or Representatives that does not apply equally to the citizens of the United States.” 

    • OnPointComments
    • NewtonWhale

      We just went through an election in which it became abundantly clear that many conservatives, including, ironically, Mitt Romney, have allowed themselves to be systematically brainwashed. As former Bush speechwriter David Frum put it: “Republicans have been fleeced and exploited and lied to by a conservative entertainment complex.”

      http://www.politico.com/blogs/media/2012/11/frum-republicans-lied-to-by-conservative-entertainment-149120.html

      Liberals live in the reality based community, and are willing to consider ideas and allegations on their merits. Your charge made me curious to learn more, so I Googled the subject. 

      After a search that took all of 0.38 seconds, I discovered a story by FactCheck.org debunking the Fox charge, and the viral email that you so credulously passed along verbatim:

       
      Congress Not Exempt from Student Loans

      We have received dozens of e-mails asking us if members of Congress and their family members or staffers are exempt from repaying their student loans. Many of those questions include the viral e-mail above or make reference to it or Fox News…

      We don’t take any position on the merits of the programs. But it’s simply not true that they exempt anyone from repaying their student loans.

      http://www.factcheck.org/2011/01/congress-not-exempt-from-student-loans/

      PolitiFact also wrote an article on this false charge:

      The chain e-mail said that members of Congress, their families and staff members do not have to repay student loans. This is ridiculously false. We rate it Pants on Fire.

      http://www.politifact.com/truth-o-meter/statements/2011/jan/11/chain-email/do-members-congress-have-pay-back-student-loans-ye/

      It clearly took you longer to post your misleading propaganda than it took me to find the articles debunking it. Which begs the question: did you simply not try to find out if it was true, or did you know it was a lie and decide to tell it anyway?

    • RolloMartins

      Stop the madness and while you’re at it, stop watching FOX “News.” The fuzziness should clear up in about a month.

      • Fiscally_Responsible

        Rather than simply throw the report out the window, why don’t you check out to see if it is true?  If children of senators and congressmen don’t have to pay back their student loans, while my son and 99% of Americans do, wouldn’t that upset you?  How can you be upset with reporting that?  The email is apolitical (“I truly don’t care if they are Democrat, Republican, Independent or whatever”).  It’s simply about fairness and even treatment.  Isn’t that what Occupy Wall Street was all about?  I don’t get or watch Fox News at home.  But they do sometimes report on stories frequently not shown on the superficial mainstream media.  To throw everything that they report out the window is rather closed-minded, don’t you think?  The very definition of hypocrisy is to say one thing but do another.  I would say that passing laws that common people are require to obey while exempting yourself from that law is the epitome of hypocrisy.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      And I received a very interesting email from a Nigerian prince.

      Now who has two thumbs and is gettin’ rich? This guy!

      • Fiscally_Responsible

        There are some legitimate issues raised in this email that strike at the issue of fairness and consistency.  And it seems that you are making a joke out of it.  Perhaps you are ok with congressional/senate children not having to pay back their student loan.  I find it bothersome.  The unfairness of that doesn’t bother you?

        • keltcrusader

          Why are you completely ignoring NewtonWhale’s post that debunks your incorrect assertion?

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          1) What is today’s topic and guest?

          2) No, seriously, what is today’s topic and guest?

          3) How many seconds does it take to see your crap debunked below?

          You’ve gone straight to my “laugh at” bin.

  • NewtonWhale

    Jake Tapper acts like the purpose of a White House Reporter is to make it all about him.

    Listen to this “question” (accusation? manifesto? editorial?) he blurted out last month at a White House briefing:

    “Given the fact that so much was made out of the video that apparently had absolutely nothing to do with the attack on Benghazi, that there wasn’t even a protest outside the Benghazi post, didn’t President Obama shoot first and aim later?” he asked.

    http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/10/11/jake-tapper-jay-carney-obama-libya_n_1957721.html

    If you want to editorialize, Jake, get a gig as an opinion writer,and stop pretending to be an objective journalist.

    He was at it again last Friday, when he plucked a random observation out of context in order to accuse President Obama of not caring about jobs, then argued with Jay Carney who attempted to supply the context:

    Q    So the Congressional Budget Office issued a report looking at the fiscal cliff and the options, and they said that if all of the Bush-era tax cuts were extended it would create on average 1.8 million jobs, but if the ones for wealthier Americans were allowed to expire it would create 1.6 million jobs.  So that’s 200,000 jobs that would not be created if the President gets his way, at a time when the President is talking about how jobs and the economy are the most important issue — that’s how he opened his remarks.  What are we to make of those 200,000 jobs? MR. CARNEY:  Well, as you know, the President has put forward numerous proposals that would create those jobs and more, far more than 200,000.  What I think the CBO report released yesterday demonstrates is a point that we’ve been making and independent economists have been making for so long, which is that the economic benefit of tax cuts to the wealthiest earners is very, very small — minimal in comparison to the economic benefit that comes from extending tax cuts to regular, middle-class Americans, 98 percent of earners, in fact.  And I think that’s what that report reflects, and what – Q    It also reflects that 200,000 jobs would not be created as a result of the President getting his way. MR. CARNEY:  But the President’s overall proposals, including investments represented by measures within the American Jobs Act, including measures the President talked about in his convention speech that are part of his plan, would create far more jobs than that.  And the way that we’re able to do that is by making — taking a balanced approach so that the assets, the resources that we have available to us do not flow principally or exclusively to the top 2 percent of wage earners, but go to investments in infrastructure or investments in education, investments in clean energy and other – Q    You’re changing the subject. 
    http://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2012/11/09/press-briefing-press-secretary-jay-carney-1192012

    If you want to editorialize, Jake, go back to drawing political cartoons.

    • NewtonWhale

      Here are some cartoons by Jake.
      He does seem to have a fascination with Obama.

      My, what big ears he has.

    • anamaria23

      Jake Tapper is a Fox  News syncophant.

      • Gregg Smith

        He works for ABC a rival of FOX. He’s a good reporter.

        • 1Brett1

          AH, but he’s in “sync” with the other Fox sycophants! ;-)

          • Gregg Smith

            SMPTE or MTC?

          • 1Brett1

            You know, I don’t know, but Bill O’Reilly’s lips were moving but he sounded just like Jake Tapper!?!?!

    • Gregg Smith

      Those questions are the very least we should expect. 

      • NewtonWhale

        A question is designed to elicit new information.
        A rant is designed to make the ranter feel good.

        Jake could have saved everyone a lot of time, and provided more entertainment, if he’d just busted out his inner James Brown.

    • ttajtt

      that could be the end of a job for some.

  • Ed75

    Because he supports abortion, embryonic stem cell research, restriction of religious liberty, same sex marriage, and euthanasia (forthcoming), I think President Obama’s second term will be a disaster. (See Richard Nixon’s second term, when Roe v. Wade was passed.) We voted him in.

    I think it will happen fast, as we’re already seeing, but I don’t think it will happen until after January 22nd:

    ‘Forty years I endured that wicked generation’ Psalms.

    • 1Brett1

      Ed! Good morning! Isn’t it a little early in the week to be copying and pasting your weekly post from your word processor? By the way, just love the Nixon twist! It shows your not all copy, paste, and broken record! Good show, man! And I agree, The crumbling of Nixon’s second term had nothing to do with, oh, say, for example, Watergate, and the increasing dissatisfaction with how he was handling Vietnam, and it had everything to do with the legalization of abortion! After all, everybody knows he had complete control over the Supreme Court!

      • Shag_Wevera

        Ed don’t do dialogue.

    • DrewInGeorgia

      “Almost One Thousand years We’ve endured your wicked Religion” ~ Me

  • 1Brett1

    Sex story or spy novel/conspiracy? Bob Woodward, a real journalist, has some real information on the matter.

    Sex sells. The Petraeus affair has and will be a news item for two reasons: 1) people will continue to prick up their ears because of the prurient nature of the story and Petraeus is a popular public figure. 2) The conspiracy theorists love a good new espionage conspiracy/ Obama coverup scandal. But, it is a sex story and only a sex story. 

    Petraeus knew he was being investigated even before the Benghazi attack (he may have known as far back as August or July even); he knew his affair was going to become public at some point and what that could possibly mean for his career and personal life. When the Director of National Intelligence, James Clapper, last week, asked him to ask the president to resign, he tendered his resignation. 

    As far as a conspiracy of coverups and dirty lies and secrets, Petraeus did his own investigation of the Benghazi attack and his conclusion fits what the White House is saying, so his testimony would benefit the White House position and narrative. This hardly sounds like reason to bump him off, so to speak, ruining an otherwise powerfully esteemed career, while also ruining his personal life.

    However, let’s indulge that conspiracy for a moment. [[Petraeus knew he had the goods on the White House, and they canned him to keep him quiet!]] Okay, he can still be called to testify; and, would the best strategy to control Petraeus be to royally piss him off and ruin his life? Would that ensure his cooperation with the White House or make him more docile?  ….Ah, and a new conspiracy is born: maybe Obama just botched the whole thing (like he is inclined to do) and just didn’t quite finish the job, as Clinton did with Vince Foster? Something to think about, eh?      

    • Gregg Smith

      I’m not sure of the demarkation between your comments and Woodward’s or is it all a Woodward quote? Either way I don’t agree this is nothing but a sex story. I do believe (and posted days ago) that the prurient angle will make people interested. I agree there.

      • 1Brett1

        Let me try to delineate the demarcation line a little. I can’t say with absolute certainty that this is JUST a sex scandal, although that is my sense in looking at the timeline, Petraeus’s investigation into Benghazi and James Clapper’s role. The timeline, Petraeus’s investigation and Clapper’s asking for his resignation are from Woodward. 

        What do you offer as encouraging your opinion that this is more than a sex scandal?  

        • Gregg Smith

          I posted above but I had a hard time concentrating because of the noisy black helicopters. 

          When the top spook diddles the implications have too many tentacles to rule out anything. I suppose from a security standpoint the most troubling part is her speech when she told about the secret prison at the annex and how she was privy. What else was she aware of? If the attack was an effort to free them by the militia (a theory with it’s own set of problems) then it gets dicey.

        • Shag_Wevera

          Isn’t “Delineate the Demarcation” an old Pink Floyd album?

          • 1Brett1

            Yes, I believe ’twas. In fact, Syd Barrett, it has been said in some circles, left the band over this, not wanting any delineation of ANY demarcation line! ;-)

  • Gregg Smith

    I think it was commenter Mike_Card who referred to all the speculation as “sculpting fog”. He was right but as I delve into it I realize the importance of all this detective work by the blogoshpere. I think back to many issues and remember details that at the time seemed (and were) incredibly important to that issue but now those details are not part of the collective context when recalling those issues. That’s how history is rewritten. 

    • 1Brett1

      I agree with your post; however, I suspect you might mean something very different than I do (there isn’t a connection between Petraeus’s sex scandal and Benghazi).

      • Gregg Smith

        I’m not going to argue but I disagree or at the very least cannot agree at this time. I didn’t go into detail precisely because I was hoping to get agreement on the larger point. Thanks.

        Because of that, the certainty we (meaning everyone) will butt heads over the evidence and what it means later, plus (and not least) your most excellent grammatical flourish with the semi colon and “however”, I’ll leave it there. I can’t mess with that.

        • 1Brett1

          Gregg, you ignorant slut! …Oops, sorry, reflex. But, seriously, I can appreciate that you have an opinion but are withholding judgement (“…I can not agree at this time.”) My opinion is just that, as well, but it is based on Woodward’s findings. 

        • Gary Trees

          “; however,”

          Yes, we do all love our transitional phrases.

    • NewtonWhale

      Hey, kids! Gregg just invented a new game! 
      Here’s how it works:

      1) Take a random scandal about the head of the CIA that was politicized by a lovesick would be adulterer and shirtless right wing hack at the FBI:

      the agent, who was not identified, continued to “nose around” about the case, and eventually his superiors “told him to stay the hell away from it, and he was not invited to briefings,” the official said. The Wall Street Journal first reported on Monday night that the agent had been barred from the case.Later, the agent became convinced — incorrectly, the official said — that the case had stalled. Because of his “worldview,” as the official put it, he suspected a politically motivated cover-up to protect President Obama. The agent alerted Eric Cantor, the House majority leader, who called the F.B.I. director, Robert S. Mueller III, on Oct. 31 to tell him of the agent’s concerns.http://www.nytimes.com/2012/11/13/us/timeline-shows-fbi-discovered-petraeus-affair-in-summer.html?hp&_r=0&pagewanted=all2) Using the magical transitive properties of the “forward slash”, link it to some totally unrelated story you are fixated on and desperate to pimp. Voila! A freshly minted conspiracy theory. Put on your tin foil hats, kids, and remember, one size fits all!That looks like fun. Can I play?Hey, Gregg, howsabout you and your friends in the Right Wing Blogosphere Detective Agency, Sewing Circle, and Timing Association delving into the Mitt Romney Gay Classmate Haircut Assault/Petraeus mess next time you want to rewrite history?

  • 1Brett1

    Thanks, On Point, for changing this segment’s photo! The other one kept putting me in the mind of Jason Sudeikis doing a SNL skit…

    • DrewInGeorgia

      lol

      I actually liked the other pic better.

      • 1Brett1

        Well, yes, it was truer to the subject.

    • Mike_Card

      Does anyone else still wear those matching tie & pocket hanky thingies?

  • Gregg Smith

    Please excuse the following run on sentence, it seems appropriate.

    So, Petraeus is having sex under the desk with Paula Broadwell and Mrs. Broadwell is insecure about Jill Kelley so she sends her harassing emails which Ms. Kelly gives to her “friend” with the FBI who passes it up the ladder and an investigation ensues but since the “friend” was obsessed with Ms. Kelly and had texted her shirtless photos he was barred from the case. Yikes.

    In late Jan. a Wiki page was up for about an hour that outed the affair:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?title=Paula_Broadwell&oldid=473399112

    The President is blissfully unaware of all of this until a day after the election. Hmmmm. How did this get passed the Petraeus’ vetting to become CIA chief? Excuse me while I put on my tinfoil hat…. there we go. Did anyone notice that Petraeus went with the narrative about the silly video when it was known to be a lie? Could that have been because he feared being outed? Or was threatened? Is it possible he found that untenable with the upcoming hearings so he resigned so he can tell the unvarnished truth if asked to testify?

    Okay, off with the hat. Where is President Obama? Is he rightfully spitting mad that he was not informed? Is he demanding Petraeus, Hillary and everyone involved come forth and testify?

    • 1Brett1

      If Petraeus testifies, then all conspiratorial/soap opera-ish points are moot. If he doesn’t testify, no matter what the truth actually is, people will be left to speculate endlessly, which wouldn’t really be good for the country. For this reason, at least, I hope he still testifies.

      • Gregg Smith

        I do too.

        • Mike_Card

          ahh…I’m guessing you meant untoward, but “untorrid” in this context sounds like a great new term!

          • Gregg Smith

            Actually, I’m just too dumb to spell it but I didn’t trust the spell checker when it said there was no word. Sometimes you have to wing it.

          • Mike_Card

            Nah.  I guess there’s precedent for insisting that we’re not going to be held captive by spell-checkers (isn’t there?).

            Besides, I’m already plotting for excuses to insert “untorrid” into inevitable future posts on this topic (!)

    • Shag_Wevera

      Your one blue dress short of impeachment, Double G!

      • DrewInGeorgia

        I get the implied sarcasm but please don’t encourage him.

        And he’s a Triple G by the way.

        • Gregg Smith

          Nice!

  • Michiganjf

    The Republicans are a One Trick Pony which is apparently incapable of learning a new trick.

    Voters showed on the 6th that they couldn’t care less about the moronic attempts of Faux News and Republicans to turn Benghazi into something bigger than it is.

    Republicans had better figure out quick that Americans want them to finally focus on issues pertinent to the American middle class and poor, and lay off their perennial stupidities.

    Forget about General Petraeus’s personal foibles… they won’t even get you as much traction as Beghazi, which was NIL.

    … that’s LESS THAN ZERO, get it?

    Join our President, and FOCUS on America’s needs, for a change!

    • Gregg Smith

      So you have ruled out any possibility of anything inappropriate. Security was fine and only four were killed. An embassy breech once every 40 years is acceptable. The Arab Spring is peachy. Al Qaeda is not a threat and we should all just shut up. It’s all ginned up by Fox. Gotcha’ 

      • Michiganjf

        Yup, me and about 86% of America.

        … but that 14% Tea-bagger/birther population is with you, Gregg, so you guys have fun with that.

      • Shag_Wevera

        Compared to the amount who have lost their lives in a Baloney war in Iraq and a 10 year debacle in Afghanistan?  I’d say embassy duty in an unstable mid-east(ish) country is inherrently dangerous.

    • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

       Join our president?  He works for us.

      • Michiganjf

        You don’t think Republicans in Congress should “join our President,” or did you not follow the context?

        … or who else did you think I was saying should “focus on issues pertinent to the American middle class and poor?”

        Those in Congress also “work for us.”

        • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

           The Constitutionally defined job of Congress is to be a check and balance to the the president.  No, Congress shouldn’t fall into line with the Messiah.

          • Thinkin5

            Yes, look what happened when the R’s fell in line with W.!!

          • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

             Exactly so.  The PATRIOT Act and the war in Iraq should have been given a lot more scrutiny, at the very least.

          • Steve__T

             Ya Think!

          • Michiganjf

            Brilliant!

              So those in Congress should NOT join our President “to finally focus on issues pertinent to the American middle class and poor?”

            Great! It sounds like your right there with the modern Republican Party of No Compromise, No leadership, and No  concept of Statesmanship!

          • http://gregorycamp.wordpress.com/ Greg Camp

             And you’re so stuck in left-wing ideology that you can’t see beyond the approved narrative.  Opposing forces can come to agreement, but the job of the separate branches of our government are to restrain the others, in addition to acting within their own spheres.

          • Steve__T

             But have done none of the above, and at this rate, Pigs will fly first.

  • TomK_in_Boston

    I admit that a sex scandal is always amusing, especially now that it seems that the woman who got the threatening emails from Petraus’s girlfriend was actually Gen Allen’s girlfriend! My, my – 20,000 pages of email? Where did he find the time?

    In the big picture, I care about this about as much as I care about the Benghazi faux “scandal”. The real question is, will Obama sell out his base over the “fiscal cliff” scare? I don’t want any bargains that degrade SS and medicare or cut essential gvt programs! Tax the rich, end the wars, invest in the USA!

    • Michiganjf

      Amen, brother!

    • Expanded_Consciousness

      This is about the big picture. It wouldn’t be no big deal if these women had been sent by our enemies. It wouldn’t be no big deal if pillow talk or emails revealed classified information. It would be a huge deal if security breaches lead to the death of troops or other operatives. Security is THE big deal. This is all about security and nothing about genitals.

      • ttajtt

        did bate talk… blind us?   hope troops stop dying now.  

        • Expanded_Consciousness

          The military does not have to follow security protocol if breaching it and crossing one’s fingers does not lead to disaster. Drive 100 mpr, as long as you don’t kill anyone what’s the problem? It is not like being reckless is wrong in and of itself. Following the rules is just for privates and lower-level nobodies,  anyway.

          • ttajtt

            shh – save your job position, its a highly top secret confidential need to know only talk/see/ear sh.  

    • JGC

      I hope Mrs. Allen has at least 50,000 e-mails in her in-box from the General. Or Mrs. Allen will soon be joining Mrs. Petraeus in the Furious Wives Club.

  • DrewInGeorgia

    What I don’t understand is how these individuals don’t already know that e-mails never go away. Where have you all been the past decade?

    What do the the former director of the CIA, a Four Star General, and a published author have in common? Evidently not a lick of common sense.

    • Ray in VT

      I just spoke with a co-worker of mine about that issue yesterday, and she reminded me that our emails, at least those coming and going via my work address, are company property.  It seems pretty basic at this point.

    • JGC

      The e-mails were never sent. They retrieved them from draft folders, which added a layer of difficulty in tracking them. CIA superspies are too clever…

      • DrewInGeorgia

        Note to self: Don’t forget about the draft folder.

        Wait a minute! If the e-mails were never sent then how are they being considered inappropriate communique? I’m so confused.

        • JGC

          Join the club!

          • Steve__T

             You can place them in the draft  folder and send them later, or save as draft before sending.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      “Decade”? Don’t sell yourself short. Ollie North got convicted on emails he “deleted” from an IBM mainframe over a quarter century ago.

      (Now we have to explain to everyone under 30 what a “mainframe” is, and that you had to be at a desk in front of a tube to look at email, and all you could read was email from people in your company.)

      • DrewInGeorgia

        I just figured that the inherent risks involved in communication via e-mail would have sunk in with everyone that uses a computer over the course of the past ten years.

        Mainframe? Punch-Cards. lol

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          You’re right on that timeframe. But I do remember in the ’80s how even the Network News told us North thought emails were deleted forevah from the IBM system.

          And, punch-cards? I used to dream of living in a corridor upgrading to punch-cards.

          Imagine what a police procedural would look like in the 1950s: “This grid of tiny, charged magnets is proof that my client could not have committed the crime, Your Honor.!”

      • Steve__T

         Three. Amber on black

        • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

          Oops, yes.

    • Thinkin5

      Big egos is what they all have in common.

  • Shag_Wevera

    Patron: Hi, I’d like a double nothing burger with a small side of boring fries.

    Waitress, calling out order to cook:  I need a double Petraeus with a small Benghazi on the side! 

  • Shag_Wevera

    Phew!  I’m 41 and no longer let my genitals think for me.  Must be all the machismo required of a military man.

  • MrNutso

    Paula Broadwell sounds like she never left high school.

    • JGC

      She reminds me of that jealously enraged female astronaut a few years ago, who drove 900 miles non-stop to Florida, wearing adult diapers, to try to “off” the new girlfriend.  

      • MrNutso

        My wife and I happened to be in Fla. at the time visiting her sister.  We were on a visiting roll.  The Astronaut, Anna Nicole Smith died, Tiger assaulted by five iron.

        • Mike_Card

          5-irons the world over cry out their protest.  It was, unquestionably, a 9-iron!

  • Expanded_Consciousness

    Tom, how can sex talk be 10s of 1000s of pages? Come on, baby. Don’t be coy. You know how. Stop pretending to be so innocent.

  • sickofthechit

    Could some of you please start circulating the idea that those whose homes are made useless by Hurricane Sandy should be able to stay in Foreclosed Properties?  I think we could all agree that the Banks owe us this at a minimum. May not solve the problem, but it would for a few families.

  • http://www.facebook.com/otis.sockpuppet Otis Sock-Puppet

    ‘Shocker’? An alpha primate used his high status as licence to mate ad lib, that sounds like S.O.P. to me.

  • Wahoo_wa

    Is the descriptive hyperbole when describing the women involved necessary?  It seems quite sexist and offensive…and juvenile.

    • Wahoo_wa

      Really Tom….stop already.

  • skeptic150

    The issues:
    1) Affair
    2) Confidential information
    Regarding 1- what people do in their bedrooms is none of our business, imo. I think it can easily be demonstrated that monogamy is not the “norm” with a human lifespan 70+ years.  So what if he had an affair – he’s human. It does not “boggle the mind” as your guest says.
    2) I doubt there sensitive info was compromised. This is probably handwaving nonsense at best.

    • MrNutso

      I think the boggling part is the position that we was in.  Job position I mean.

      • Ray in VT

        It’s a good thing that you included that second sentence, or else there might have been some very funny comments.

      • skeptic150

        All people, whether in leadership positions or not, are not immune to giving in to natural, human desires (which we’ve evolved to have for obvious reasons). Personally, I am tired of hearing of “sex scandals” which almost seem to be expected – it’s just biology/nature playing out and is in no way “mind boggling” to me.  What’s the big deal, really? 

        • Thinkin5

           If people are so defenseless against their sexual desires, they should use sex instead of waterboarding when interrogating people.

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

            Hey, it worked for Mata Hari.

          • skeptic150

            Don’t they?

        • Ray in VT

          I don’t know why people continue to be surprised by such revelations, given the long history of such actions by individuals.  That is not an excuse or a justification, just an realistic look at people and how they have and continue to behave.  Maybe people are surprised because they always think that this person or that one is above such an action.

          • DrewInGeorgia

            To me this is much like the line of thought that people are inherently generous and that the richer they become the more benevolent they will be. We each believe what we want to believe, consequences be damned.

          • Ray in VT

            Consequences or reality/facts be damned.  My undergraduate professor presented me with a story of someone who believed in some crazy thing, and, after being presented with evidence to the contrary, still held onto his view, and the punch line was something like “Don’t bother me with facts; I’ve made up my mind.”

          • DrewInGeorgia

            Did you read my comment before I edited it? If not it’s scary how well you read my meaning.

            Before I edited it said “We each believe what we want to believe, consequences and facts be damned.”

            I removed facts from the sentence because the fit just didn’t seem quite right.

          • Ray in VT

            No, I didn’t see it before you edited it.  That is weird.

        • OnPointComments

          If a person breaks one of the most sacred promises made, do you think it says something about his character?  If he betrays the people most important and closest to him, do you think he might be less hesitant before betraying people of lesser importance?  When evaluating the leader of an organization, would it influence your opinion if you knew the leader was a liar and a cheater?  If it’s no big deal that the leader lacks the self control for the “human desire” of adultery, for which other human desires does he get a pass?  You’re wrong; it’s a big deal when a person proves himself to be untrustworthy.

          • skeptic150

            What promise? Do you know the details of their marriage? Do you know if their vows contained a promise of monogamy? Do you know if they agreed to “swing?” Do you know if their relationship was unfulfilling for one or both of them? The point is, their sex life, whether horrific, wonderful, polygamous, etc., is none of your/our business.  His ability to be a good general, as history has shown for centuries, is absolutely not related to whether he is “monogamous” or “faithful” to a single woman. And, you cannot make a sweeping generalization from his “affair” that he is “untrustworty.”

          • skeptic150

            The problem, imo, is the false notion that monogamy is the “norm,” especially with people living to 70+ years of age.  The whole monogamy thing, along with any “promises” to that effect, needs to be reconsidered, imo.  It may have evolved and served a purpose when the average lifespans were half what they are today, but even then, monogamy is not the “norm” for most of human history (nor is it, in reality, the norm today).
            And, by your criteria, most people would be considered ”untrustworthy” – but that may be true.

    • Steve__T

       Does the name Clinton ring a bell?

  • JGC

    Perhaps little known fun facts about the growing Petraeus scandal:

    An FBI whistle-blower spoke to Eric Cantor over 2 WEEKS ago, accusing Petraeus of an extramarital affair and potentially jeopardizing the security of classified information. Cantor had his chief of staff pass on the accusations to FBI officials. Cantor’s office confirmed the NYT report “was accurate”. (So Cantor knew about the Petraeus situation weeks before Obama was informed!)

    The FBI agent to whom Jill Kelley reported the harassing e-mails, was removed from the case when it was found he had sent shirtless photos of himself to Kelley.

    Jill Kelley has an identical twin sister, Natalie Khawam, who is a lawyer specializing in representation of whistle-blowers.  Khawam lost her son in a nasty custody battle, where the judge called her “psychologically unstable”.  Khawam asked Petraeus to help her regain custody of her son, which he obliged by writing a letter on her behalf two months ago.

    Paula Broadwell lives in the same neighborhood as John Edward’s former mistress, videographer Rielle Hunter. The top trending comment on Twitter is currently “Please,god, let Rielle Hunter, another Charlotte resident, be involved in this somehow.” 

    Vernon Loeb – “My wife says I’m the most clueless person in America.”  Loeb was the ghost writer of “All In”, Paula Broadwell’s biography of Petraeus. 

    How will this all end?  Will we find out who shot J.R. or will it just be Bobby’s bad dream?  And what are they putting in the water supply in Charlotte, Gregg?

    • Thinkin5

       You really have to ask why a “journalist”, who has to have a ghost writer, gets unprecedented access to a man in Petraeus’s position! Seriously??!!! What credentials did this woman have that warranted that kind of access?

      • JGC

        I don’t know, but Loeb also said that, “She (Broadwell) got plenty of face-time with Petraeus in Afghanistan.”  Yikes!

        • 1Brett1

          Kind of gives the expression, “face-time” new meaning…

  • Shag_Wevera

    Success in his second term will boil down to lifer righties in the house (Boehner) not wanting their legacies linked to absolute and mindless obstructionism.  President Obama will certainly dissappoint his base and irritate his rivals in the next 4 years.  As long as Medicare, Medicaid, and Social Security are fortified instead of deconstructed, history will judge him as a success.

    • Steve__T

       Wrong topic, this should have been in “What’s next for the GOP”

    • 1Brett1

      I’m inclined to agree with your points…As much as Boehner has let ideology and allegiances guide his approach, he also, historically (mostly pre-Speaker days), has been more of a deal-maker than ideologue. I’m hoping his ego is large enough that he’ll begin to think about his “legacy” and will remake himself as the deal-maker he used to be. McConnell, on the other hand…let’s just say, there’s not much hope for him. 

  • peter_dolan

    Hadn’t any of them ever read “Hell in a Very Small Place” about Dien Bien Phu?

    • Ray in VT

      I wondered something similar regarding how we were going about our business in Afghanistan a few years back when I happened upon this document out of the USMC:  The other side of the mountain : Mujahideen Tactics in the Soviet-Afghan War, as it seems that we repeated some of the mistakes that the Soviets made, just like we repeated some of the mistakes that the French made in Vietnam.

      • 1Brett1

        While it stands to reason that any large bureaucracy can and will rise to its own level of incompetence, it also seems reasonable to question how we could not have seemed to learn a damn thing from the Soviet-Afghan War.  

        • Ray in VT

          I remember thinking after the fall of the Taliban that we ought not to get too full of ourselves.  They know what it’s like to run to the hills and snipe at a superpower for a decade.

        • DrewInGeorgia

          Seems like we’ve learned nothing from any wars. The Iliad should be mandatory reading though the lessons it has to offer would likely be lost on most.

          Been goin’ on
          Since we picked up sticks
          But forward we March
          Blood’s value nixed.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      I read a book on Dien Bien Phu ages ago (pre internet days), and can’t remember the title. But the ideas of it stick in my brain, which is more important, I guess.

  • 1whynot1

    Tom: stop your repeated us of the phrase “hot autobiographer in a tight skirt” to characterize the general’s love interest. There were two people involved in this affair. Your language reinforces the age old myth of some poor guy who can’t be expected to control his “natural” urges being trapped by some vampy female.
    As a long time, loyal listener I expect more of you and NPR.

  • Michiganjf

    Listening to Mr. Tapper’ stories from the Front, it becomes even more obvious how SECONDARY, or even TERTIARY, Benghazi and Petraeus are in the big scheme of things… especially to all those military serving in harm’s way.

  • http://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1211478634 Katie Murphy

    Just an FYI to the show, as someone that has to listen to the live streaming with headphones on at her desk, you can hear every little pencil scratch Tom makes.  It makes it seem as if he is not listening such as in yesterdays program, it sounded like he was coloring with his pencil around the 16 – 17 min mark.  VERY ANNOYING and ends up drowning out the guests because you focus on the annoying noise.  otherwise great shows.

  • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

    I expect many in Congress see the Patraeus news as a godsend – anything to keep the media off the fiscal cliff and how little Washington is doing about it. And it should keep them busy until we get an 11th hour “we have no time left for choices, we have to do this” shoved down our throats.

    • DrewInGeorgia

      You mean OJ is fleeing in a White Bronco with Michael Jackson’s physician in the back? Stop the presses!

    • OnPointComments

      This Congress is a disgrace.  It goes on vacation during the month of August, then returns for a week and decides that it should be in recess until after the election.  It returns the week after the election, then takes the next week off for Thanksgiving.  You’re right that the Congress will likely claim that it has no time left for choices, and it’s not surprising since it has frittered away half of the year.

      • http://pulse.yahoo.com/_Y6CO5C2HE4WM2OYGCDVWGPRXXM oldman

        The House is supposed to recess 12/14 – it will be interesting to see whether they see digging in and holding out or going home for the holidays is more important.

  • Thinkin5

    Some interesting reporting on the Patraeus story that we haven’t heard much on. http://www.aljazeera.com/programmes/insidestoryamericas/2012/11/2012111393726260587.html
    Earlier this year, Lieutenant Colonel Daniel Davis released a whistleblower report on conditions in Afghanistan.

    He said that Petraeus consistently gave glowing and inaccurate
    accounts of US military progress and that Petraeus built a so-called
    “cult of personality” around himself.

    “A message had been learned by the leading politicians of our
    country, by the vast majority of our uniformed service members, and the
    population at large [that] David Petraeus is a real war hero – maybe
    even on the same plane as Patton, MacArthur, and Eisenhower …. But the
    most important lesson everyone learned [was to] never, ever question
    General Petraeus or you’ll be made to look a fool!”
    host Kimberly Halkett is joined by guests: Gareth Porter, an investigative journalist and historian; Larry Korb, the former assistant Secretary of Defence; and Ray McGovern, a retired CIA officer.

  • Rex Henry

    Is the question of why nobody knew about the Patraeus affair for real? Common sense tells us that this story had no business in the middle of a Presidential election.

    • ttajtt

      remember the WMD slipped by too?

  • jimino

    This broadens the subject your guest wrote about, but does he think this Petraeus,etc. incident will finally provide an opening for the obvious fact that the institution of our military has become LESS than the sum of its parts?  Isn’t it way past time for it to be dispassionately judged without hiding behind the proverbial skirts of the undoubtedly brave and dedicated individuals who serve?  With it costing as much as the next 15 countries spend on their military, close to half of veterans of recent actions claiming some form of disability and the decades-long cost of providing life-long support for many of them, and most importantly, the fact that there has been no identifiable goals reached despite over 10 years of “war”, can we finally begin the process of realistically questioning what we expect from and are getting from all this blood, sweat, tears, lives and money?

    • Shag_Wevera

      Uh-oh.  You must not be a patritoic American if you question the nature and use of our military.

      I’d like to see us drastically reduce our military.  America isn’t going to be toppled by a foreign military threat.  We will either collapse from within, or be economically dominated by China.  Neither of those threats requireus outspending China 100:1 on our military.

  • George_Dedham_MA

    We should NEVER go to war unless every single American has to make some sacrifice. Hell we didn’t even raise bloody taxes so citizens would at least be paying for the war.  In WWII everyone was in – today almost no one.  If it were not for the draft we might still be in Vietnam.

    • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

      Makes me appreciate the “stunt bill” that someone made in the House reintroducing the draft. I forget who (Rangel?), but it was the mid ’00s.

      Never gonna pass, but it made a point about how we’ve gotten to be “a military at war” yet not a “country at war” and the dangers theirin.

    • 1Brett1

      I did reluctantly hit the “like” button. My reluctance isn’t, however, because I disagree. It’s just that I’ve gotten a bit cynical about the whole prospect of how we enter into wars, but that’s not your point. 

      I would have a more measured way of characterizing your statement, “In WWII everyone was in,” in that there were some men who didn’t go due to a disability not apparent to some person meeting them on the street. And they were often met with disdain or at least having to endure a stranger’s inquisition, which perpetuated all sorts of undesirable mindsets that led to public sentiment as to pointing fingers and dividing people in terms of black-and-white, whose-side-are-you-on? kinds of mentalities.

      There would be more public outrage over prolonged war, why we enter war, and over the military’s entropic “military industrial complex” of protecting itself for the sake of protecting itself, if we reintroduced the draft.

  • http://www.facebook.com/theneghan Thomas Heneghan

    After 45 minutes and not being allowed to speak my mind…I can only imagine it is because I would argue v Tapper’s bullshit. He can’t confirm Americans making money off these wars….. ? WTF?

  • MarcusXH

    Isn’t it interesting that with all of our inter connectivity and  instant-news and whatnot the military and these wars still seem to be unimportant to a lot of Americans?

    • Thinkin5

       About half of this country doesn’t even acknowledge that a huge portion of the national debt is the cost of 2 wars. They weren’t even put in the Bush/Cheney budget.

      • TomK_in_Boston

        The clinton surplus was turned into the bush deficit by wars, tax cuts, and an economic crash caused by deregulation of wall st.

        Any non-ideological person would respond by saying we need to end the wars, raise taxes, and re-regulate wall st. Why do I hear the opposite from the TeaOP?

        • Steve__T

           Tom I’m ideological, and my logic says we need to end the wars, raise taxes, and re-regulate wall st. My idea is we need to do it now.

    • jefe68

      I dare say it’s quite disturbing. Americans need more skin in the game. I hate to say this and I can’t believe I am but maybe we need to bring back the draft. With no exemptions. If you’re Mitt Romney your sons are going.

      • bethrjacobs

        and obamas girls too

        • jefe68

          Well they are bit young for the military, don’t you think? Or is this some lame partisan BS?

          • bethrjacobs

            well when they turn seventeen draft them …kids thier age are being killed in the middle east or running for thier lives why should his kids get off easy

          • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

            I remember when Biden’s son and McCain’s son were just about the only kids of Congresscritters in the service, soon after 9/11. (Correct as necessary.)

            Your charge of “lame partisan BS” is accurate.

      • Keepinitreal50

        Similar idea was proposed by Thomas Ricks.  (Reference http://www.npr.org/2012/11/01/164096479/ricks-firing-generals-to-fight-better-wars). 

        It pains me to say this, but mandatory military service may be the only way to prevent us from entering these protracted wars every 30-40 years.  

    • hennorama

      This apparent public disinterest has been intentionally and carefully orchestrated by both the government and a compliant media.
      Our political and military leaders don’t want a repeat of the  uncensored media coverage of the Vietnam War, when the true awful nature of war was shown to the American public every evening on the 6 o’clock news.  This coverage hastened the end of the war, as public opinion turned against both the war and the government.  No current government is brave enough to risk their own demise via the media and public opinion, so media restrictions have been imposed.

      The media have been effectively censored since 1990, at the beginning of the Persian Gulf War in Kuwait and Iraq.  The Pentagon imposed historically tight restrictions on media coverage of the battlefield, which is practically unchanged since.  Starting with the Gulf War, all news coverage had to be reviewed before it was released or published, ostensibly for security reasons.

      Some security restrictions clearly are needed, as media moustache Geraldo Rivera so ably demonstrated when he revealed operational details in a live broadcast from the 2nd Iraq War in 2003.

      Not only was coverage of the fighting restricted, images of returning military casualties were completely prohibited. The reasons given were the privacy of the families, and the “sancity of the mission.”  This restriction was lifted in 2009, with families now being consulted as to whether they would consent to  media access.  Most families have said “Yes.”

      The media landscape has also changed, which added to the decline of war coverage.  Media outlets have been consolidated under large public companies, and the “news” now must justify its very existence, and especially its costs, in the name of profits.  Thus, we now have “news” that is more entertainment than true journalism.  The main point now is to drive the ears and eyeballs of audiences to media outlets in an effort to sell more advertising.  The very nature of our democracy suffers as a result.

      • Steve__T

         Applauds, I agree totally.

  • bethrjacobs

    Obama lied in his campaign (said he didn’t believe in health
    insurance mandate) proving he isn’t trust worthy and he and all those involved should
    go to jail for war crimes (killing of children with drone’s) only cowards would
    use this tactics interesting that democrats who tend to be wealthy and not
    likely to ever see battle would espouse this vicious behavior; they are nothing
    but spoiled war lords.

    • Steve__T

       Start with Bush.

      • bethrjacobs

        Sure him too but charming Obama has used more drone strikes

        • Steve__T

           I said start by no means stop until we have everyone that been keeping it going unnecessarily.

    • Gregg Smith

      Not only did he say he didn’t believe in the mandate he said Obamacare was not a tax. Stephanopoulos drilled him but he would to budge. He never care, he’s a progressive and the wheels are set in motion.

      • bethrjacobs

        Obama is to the right of Regan he also increased troops in
        the middle east most progressives end up going full circle and agreeing with
        some of the far right who actually only put the mandate idea forward as a joke
        Obama and his crew (And I mean that in the Mafia sense of the word) hate the lower
        class and will get rid of us anyway they can they like the rich and the very
        poor the rest of us can go to hell and have a terrible ride on the way too.

  • stillin

    It is always disturbing, and sad, to hear of lives lost in the “war”…but on the drone subject. How many innocent people, of the population we are droning, have been killed by “accident”? I really want to know, about how many? War hurts BOTH sides, and I am talking about the civilians, not the military ones.

    • bethrjacobs

      None of our children had to run and hide from unmanned missiles…there is no comparison and we are not technically “at war” we are attacking third world countries we intend to colonies like we did America exterminating the people like we did to 95% of Native Americans.

      • MarcusXH

        That’s a lot of unsubstantiated claims in one run-on sentence. I’m inclined to believe you.

        • bethrjacobs

          Thanks you can go to UNICEF for the bit about children
          (people under eighteen) being killed and ask yourself why there aren’t pictures
          of this so called war …like in Vietnam remember that Pulitzer prize winning
          photo of the little girl running down the street …well we can’t take that
          picture in Afghanistan or Pakistan etc.  Because
          the USA would be the reason for it we are responsible for most of the killing
          in the Middle East. When we first sanctioned Iran in the 1990’s I was watching
          a news program and footage was literally pulled off the air one minute looking
          at raw sewage in bombed out third world streets then blank air . PS I prefer
          the semi colon word likes it strait.

    • Thinkin5

       I believe that civilians are far safer with drones on attack than a full scale military operation going on in their country/neighborhood. Just look at the staggering number of Iraqis who died!! 

      “About 151,000 Iraqis died from violence in the first three years
      after the United States invaded, concludes the best effort yet to count
      deaths — one that still may not settle the fierce debate over the war’s
      true toll on civilians and others.

      The estimate comes from projections by the World Health Organization
      and the Iraqi government, based on door-to-door surveys of nearly 10,000
      households. Experts called it the largest and most scientific study of
      the Iraqi death toll since the war began.
      “The new estimate covers a period from the start of the war in March 2003
      through June 2006. It closely mirrors the tally Iraq’s health minister
      gave in late 2006, based on 100 bodies a day arriving at morgues and
      hospitals. His number shocked people in and outside Iraq, because it was
      so much higher than previously accepted estimates.” http://www.msnbc.msn.com/id/22578010/ns/world_news-mideast_n_africa/t/study-iraqis-died-conflicts-violence/#.UKJxzYWkBPo

  • J__o__h__n

    We need to ban heterosexuals from serving in the Army. 

    • Wahoo_wa

      As a gay man myself I have to say that if that happened the military would be far more FABULOUS!

      • MarcusXH

         lololololol

        you guys are hilarious

        • Wahoo_wa

          My brother and my first BF were both Marines.  You can’t beat a man in uniform!  Well…you could try to beat a man in uniform but it’s not advised (rim shot).

  • Expanded_Consciousness

    This is about the big picture. It wouldn’t be no big deal if these women had been sent by our enemies. It wouldn’t be no big deal if pillow talk or emails revealed classified information. It would be a huge deal if security breaches lead to the death of troops or other operatives. Security is THE big deal. This is all about security and nothing about genitals.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

    Very good hour with Jake Tapper being pretty informative on what seems like a good book.

    But maybe Jake can remove himself more often from the Beltway. We can get any old Inbred to say “Obama isn’t as nicey-nice as when he ran in 2008″ or “As an American I want President to succeed, and bipartisanness”.

    The most obstructionist, do-nothing Congress ever will scrub the niceness off anyone. That “disappointment meme” over the President’s inability to  singlehandedly bring a postpartisanness to the Federal government was played out three years ago.

    And Americans want good policy. Please stop conflating “President succeeding” with “bipartisanship” considering what our mainstream media has defined “bipartisanship” to mean since the year 2000. If getting good policy means peoples’ feelings get hurt, then that’s what it means.

    • Potter

      except that the “disappointment meme” that you describe was not my disappointment with Obama, but the opposite. I wanted him to fight tough as he got. I did not want him to make his opening moves his best compromise, where he first started. He gave, gave up, before he got.

      • http://profile.yahoo.com/JXSANCUDPIKQSPID5KT2U4XK5Y TF

        I, too, would have liked much of that from the President.

        But we’re just a couple of lefties talking. For each one of us there were 100 tastemakers inside the beltway who’ve been saying “He’s not compromising enough”, or “He’s too mean to the right”, or some other such ilk which became conventional wisdom.

        Both are valid viewpoints; only one do I consider a pox on our media complex because “it’s out there” and therefore it has to be “half the story”.

  • ttajtt

    do you think the “want” for love “talk”… is missed, being in a life like that.  we are said human.   Adam and lilth then eve, david and bath-sheba, bill and monica.   

  • JGC

    I’m changing the occupation on my next tax form from “homemaker” to “socialite”.

  • hennorama

    Is there anything new in Mr. Tapper’s book, really?  Didn’t we see the futility of these remote Afghan outposts already depicted in the excellent documentary film “Restrepo” from 2010?

    This is not to take anything away from the obviously terrible losses of the brave servicemembers killed and wounded at the stupidly located Outpost Keating.  Their compelling stories need to be told, of course.  I guess that’s the real point of this book – getting these stories out, lest we forget.

    In that regard, this book is worthwhile, but the type of events depicted and the ignorance of some military commanders are clearly neither unprecented nor untold.

  • 1Brett1

    Well, Tapper did seem as though he was on his best behavior, so to speak…It got me wondering if he decided to spend the hour talking about the Keating Outpost rather than stray too far into other territory because he was well aware of where he was and who would be listening? …There was some subtle and unnecessary editorializing at certain points, but I would be quibbling to make too much of them. 

    I did find his emphasis on saying the word, “shocked,” several times with regard to Petraeus’s behavior a bit implausible. Come on, a 60 year-old man with a lot of power and in good health being infatuated with a 40 year-old good-looking woman (who easily could pass for 35), who seemed to cling to him, spending countless hours “researching,” and this somehow turned into an affair, while also prompting others to turn a blind eye and deaf ear, is SHOCKING? 

  • 1Brett1

    One point of humor in the interview this morning, an interview to hawk a book, was when he was describing how the men at the Keating Outpost were sort of starved of the company of women. He mentioned the local Muslim women and how they were covered up…I began to wonder if some of the men looked at these women and began commenting to one another, “that one woman has nice forehead cleavage,” or ” did you see the eyelashes on that one woman.”

  • TomK_in_Boston

    For years a primary righty scare tactic has been “Surrender everything we’ve built up since 1929 or the big bad deficit will eat your kids.”

    Now stand by for a slight variation,  ”Surrender everything we’ve built up since 1929 or the big bad FISCAL CLIFF will eat your kids.”

    Geez, can anyone not recognize scary “framing” when it’s right in their face? Cliff? Sounds a little different as “a slight tax increase to still-historically-low levels”, doesn’t it? Now of course there are also the budget cuts that are gonna get us too. They are bad. But, suppose BHO surrenders in a “grand bargain”. That will mean cuts too. Will he agree to budget cuts to save us from budget cuts? Crazy, huh? Or, is the idea to shift the cuts away from the military and the plutocrats and onto average Americans? That makes perfect righty sense.

    End the wars, cut the military, and tax the rich until we have whatever revenue the cuts were supposed to save. Simple and fair.

    ps part of the scary costume of “cliff” is a downgrade of USA credit. Earth to forum – no investor gives a dam about what the corrupt ratings agencies say. Anyone remember the effect of the S&P downgrade on interest rates and the dollar? That would be understandable , as it was ZERO.

  • TomK_in_Boston

    TeaOP willing to compromise. Sen Blunt, R-Mo:

    “BLUNT: I think, frankly, this is a great opportunity for the president to step forward, he’s just been reelected, he doesn’t have to run for office again, and come up with a plan that actually can pass. And I think that means, don’t do the across the board cuts, come up with a way to have really targeted cuts and look at ways to increase revenue by one growing the economy, and two, maybe look at the tax code, just like Governor Romney suggested, you look at tax code and increase revenue without increasing taxes.”

    See? President Obama, having resoundingly crushed the Bane CEO, can “step forward” by proposing stuff “…just like Gov Romney suggested”. Wouldn’t that be a fine, bipartisan compromise? ROTFL

    I grew up during the cold war, and this is what I remember they told us it was like to negotiate with the communists.

  • bunnybix

    Drones indeed. The program bit off more than it could chew by plunging into speculation about the Petraeus/Allen story, the facts of which are far from clear. But you and your guest lost me for good when the speculation-fest took a tone of shock and awe that a man and woman in close proximity had some …chemistry. And that generals might also be—is it possible—human. But the worst was the insinuation that a “hot biographer” led him to ruin (and did you not know that biographers are now sometimes women, and sometimes travel on planes with their subjects?) Just the ridiculous phrase hot biographer reveals a hard-wired bias that attractive women can’t be as accomplished as men and that they are moreover natural predators. 

  • Potter

    Good show. I applaud Jake Tapper. Focussing deeply on this one aspect, this one outpost represents well the whole long endeavor in Afghanistan. If we are not there to protect the American people at home, which many soldiers enlist for and believe, then it’s immoral and shameful that we are there. The lives lost for nothing or worse (fomenting hatred)!!! Those we are fighting are fighting to get us to leave. This was evident when Obama took office. Truly it is dumb to be there. Obama said he was against dumb wars. It’s beyond dumb.

  • Michele

    This show saddened me deeply.  We all knew that the cost of war was high.  Certainly for those who have volunteered and lost their lives, But the utter incompetence in basic decision making is unconscionable.  Everytime I see the PBS Honor Roll for those killed in either Afghanistan or Iraq I get so angry…most of those kids are not even 25! What an utter waste of human life all the way around.  I agree that the American public is for the most part detached from the wars and the armed services.  The flip side is that these wars were entered into in the name of the American people but voted on by Bush and Congress. Most Americans were not proponents of either action but we pay in blood, and money while these few at the top pretend that they have a clue on how to “win” a war.  Despicable.

  • Keepinitreal50

    Excellent show.  I wish congressional representatives responsible for authorizing the use of military force and troop deployments would listen in.  Time to end this 10 year nation-building debacle that Bush got us into.  

  • 1Brett1

    I wonder if some of this Petraeus “scandal” has more to do with the ongoing turf wars between the CIA and the FBI than anything? 
     

    • Steve__T

       Lets hope not, but I wouldn’t bet the farm on it.

      • DrewInGeorgia

        The Farm…Double meaning? Nice.

  • JGC

    An interesting interview on Fresh Air on Nov. 1, with Thomas Ricks, author of “Fiasco”, also “The Gamble” about Gen. Petraeus, and new book “The Generals:American Military Command from WWII to Today.  In “The Generals” he discusses how Marshall in WWII was very selective about choosing his generals for assignments and had no problem with firing ineffective generals, unlike from Vietnam on through today. Ricks also talks during the interview about Petraeus, and of course this was before the scandal broke.  He talks about the military budget and sequestration, which was just before the election results.  He also has detailed solutions at the end of the interview with Terry Gross for the military and getting the American people “All In”, which includes bringing back the draft, no exceptions, but different from the Vietnam draft. People that are called up to serve have exceptional veteran benefits for life; he called it like “winning the lottery”. He also goes into an American sort of mandatory home service, for draftees that for particular reasons choose not to serve in a military capacity; some benefits, but not many and not nearly as good. And a third interesting Libertarian option:  if you are in the draft, and you don’t want to serve in either the military or in a home service option, fine, but now you decline absolutely all assistance from Uncle Sam for the rest of your life. It is a really, really great interview.

  • Steve__T

    Simper Paratus to the Cost Guard caller Dave, I did not here an answer to your questions especially about the military industrial complex. We’re here because we’re here is not an answer. No answer for the actions of the Generals Staff or accountability for their actions. But he may not know the why. Just his own experiences as relaid in his story.

  • dohertybe

    I arrived at Camp Keating (then Kamdesh FOB) Labor Day 2006.  I was one of two Army Corps of Engineers uniformed civilians charged with helping the Army build the PRT.  I was there from early September until Thanksgiving 2006.  The camp was strategically indefensible, environmentally deplorable, dangerous, and very poorly supported in those early months.  I wrote memos about the camp to my Army superiors in Kabul.  As far as I know they were ignored.  I left he camp in the middle of the night on a CIA helo before the camp was snowed in for the winter.  I was outraged when Lt Ben Keating died in a rollover accident in Nov 2006.  I told the commanders the road was unsafe, would be impassable in winter, and that people would die on t.  I was livid when I learned we were still in Kamdesh when they were attacked in late 2009.  I could write about this all night, but I’ll spare the details.  The Army I was there with was totally incompetent, uncaring to the soldiers who lived there, and fully responsible for all who died there.  I wish Jake Tapper would have talked to me while writing this book.  The stories I could tell would outrage anyone.

    • hennorama

      Thank you for your service.  Glad you’re able to tell the tale.  Apologies for the incompetent leadership you experienced.

      Jake Tapper is on Twitter @jaketapper and there’s a blog he contributes to here: http://abcnews.go.com/blogs/politics/political-punch/

      You never know, he may be interested in your stories for a later edition of his book, or for some other news feature.  Thanks again for your service.

  • http://www.facebook.com/sam.fuchs.7 Sam Fuchs

    Hard to thank our military enough, most Americans are shielded from paying any price of war. This interview was gripping and kept we listening for the entire time. Often very frustrating to hear of such stupid mistakes by putting military fort in a very vulnerable place.

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LPYFGBURBJEPROR7DXREXNAZ6Y Joseph

    I commend all who make sacrifices during these wars and all who served with honor. That said, when this all began, those of us who were against going to war where shouted down by many of you in the military. We cited many of the reasons that are be cited in this interview as reasons that the war was a bad idea. Now, we’re being told that we didn’t participate and we don’t have a stake. What is it Mr. Trapper?

  • http://profile.yahoo.com/LPYFGBURBJEPROR7DXREXNAZ6Y Joseph

    I commend all who make sacrifices during these wars and all who served
    with honor. That said, when this all began, those of us who were against
    going to war where shouted down by many of you in the military. We
    cited many of the reasons that are being cited in this interview as reasons
    that the war was a bad idea. Now, we’re being told that we didn’t participate and we don’t have a stake. What is it Mr. Trapper?

  • Pingback: As Afghanistan and Pakistan fall apart, will Pashtunistan take root? | Full Comment | National Post

  • Pingback: As Afghanistan and Pakistan destroy themselves, will an ethnic Pashtunistan take root?

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