Author Archives: Scott Johnson

Russia ignores Kerry

Featured image This past Saturday Secretary Kerry called Russian Foreign Minister Lavrov to express ever so politely “U.S. concerns about reports suggesting an imminent enhanced Russian military build-up there.” Kerry went so far as to “ma[k]e clear that if such reports were accurate, these actions could further escalate the conflict, lead to greater loss of innocent life, increase refugee flows and risk confrontation with the anti-ISIL Coalition operating in Syria.” Strong stuff. »

Dick Cheney: The (mad) deal with Iran

Featured image Vice President Cheney spoke at the American Enterprise Institute on the Iran deal yesterday. AEI has posted the video along with a brief summary here; I have posted the video below. The speech is about 35 minutes long followed by 10 minutes of questions and answers. Cheney’s speech provides a compelling critique of the deal tying together numerous threads against it, several drawn from previous statements made by President Obama »

Surrender…then play-fight: A word from Senator McConnell’s office

Featured image Andy McCarthy’s most recent column on the Iran deal is “How the GOP pretends not to authorize Obama’s agenda.” Andy’s argument with Paul Mirengoff is incidental to Andy’s analysis of what Corker-Cardin has wrought. Andy hypothesizes that the Iran review act (the Corker-Cardin bill) adopted by Congress represents Republican shadow boxing with the administration. In this context, I take it, he judges the act worse than nothing. Nevertheless, he draws »

Sorry seems to be the tardiest word

Featured image ABC News reports: Hillary Clinton told ABC News’s David Muir that using a personal email account while Secretary of State was a “mistake” and that she is “sorry” for it. “I do think I could have and should have done a better job answering questions earlier. I really didn’t perhaps appreciate the need to do that,” the democratic presidential candidate told Muir in an exclusive interview in New York City. »

Madam Hillary: Top Secret

Featured image The New York Times reports on a special intelligence review of two emails that Madam Hillary received as secretary of state on her personal account. The special review confirms the finding of the intelligence inspector of the intelligence agencies that these two emails (out of a sample of 40 emails from the personal account she used as Secretary of State) contained highly classified information “when Mrs. Clinton received them.” The »

What is to be done? (2)

Featured image Yesterday I noted that the Obama administration has failed to comply with the condition precedent to Congress’s review of the deal with Iran (and the president’s authority to waive sanctions). I asked what is to be done. I asked, Bill Kristol answered. Bill wears many hats, one of which is Chairman of the Emergency Committee for Israel. In this capacity he released the following statement addressing the question yesterday: The »

Noonan’s Jeb jab [With comment by Paul]

Featured image From the get-go, we have thought that Jeb Bush is a weak candidate for the Republican nomination. We don’t know any conservatives or Republicans who support his candidacy. Not one. In a strong field he struggles to make an impression. Even with my limited expectations, I question his adroitness. He made his inclination to sell out the Republican base clear even before he’d won a vote. Conventional wisdom has it »

Evingson’s Fresh Frish

Featured image We are crazy about jazz singer Connie Evingson. Yesterday we attended the second of her two sold-out productions of Fresh Frish at the Jungle Theater in Minneapolis. Following up on Connie’s album Little Did I Dream, the show featured songs from the extensive catalog of St. Paul’s own Dave Frishberg. Frishberg didn’t make the show last night but he accompanied Connie on the recording. Last night Connie called on Jon »

What is to be done?

Featured image President Obama has failed to comply with the conditions of the Iran Nuclear Agreement Review Act (the Corker-Cardin bill) that he himself signed into law. By its express terms the law required Obama to transmit to Congress “the agreement. . . . including all related materials and annexes.” He was obligated to do this “not later than five days after reaching the agreement.” Obama has not done so. The administration »

The secret life of Bryan Pagliano

Featured image Bryan Pagliano is the former State Department staffer who just advised congressional committees seeking his testimony of his intention to assert his Fifth Amendment right against self-incrimination. The Washington Post’s Rosalind S. Helderman and Carol D. Leonnig enlist the assistance of three of their colleagues to report on Madam Hillary’s private arrangement with Pagliano. The Post reports that Madam Hillary personally paid Pagliano for his services maintaining the private e-mail »

Kerry warns Russia

Featured image The AP headline reads “US warns Russia against more aid to Assad amid new violence.” Turning to the story to check out the “warning,” we find this: [T]he State Department said Kerry made clear to Lavrov that such actions “could further escalate the conflict, lead to greater loss of innocent life, increase refugee flows and risk confrontation” with the anti-Islamic State coalition operating led by the U.S. that is carrying »

She’s sorry you’re confused: A query & two notes

Featured image Jay Nordlinger speaks with Bill Kristol in his Q & A with Another Dr. K. In the course of the conversation Bill asks a pointed question regarding Madam Hillary’s wiping of the server with her official correspondence as Secretary of State: “Who has ever done that who’s an honest person?” And a knowledgeable reader writes to point out this exchange between Andrea Mitchell and Madam Hillary (video posted here): AM: »

She’s sorry you’re confused

Featured image As Steve notes in the adjacent post, Madam Hillary sat down for an interview with NBC’s Andrea Mitchell (video below). Mitchell was well chosen by the Clinton team; she appears to be member of the team who is utterly uninformed about the relevant issues bearing on Madam Hillary’s use of a private email/server setup. NBC’s coverage of the interview is posted here. According to Madam Hillary, her email setup was »

The incalculable damage done

Featured image A knowledgeable reader writes to comment on my post this morning noting the Clinton email talking points. Our reader raises an angle on the damage done that I have not seen explored elsewhere. I want to pass it on without further comment at this point: I saw your note on Clinton emails. You and everyone else are missing the real problem and scandal. It is not the emails she saved »

Feelin’ I’m Fallon

Featured image Clinton press secretary Brian Fallon appeared on CNN yesterday to answer questions posed by Brianna Keilar about some of the email issues that are dogging the Clinton presidential campaign (video below, about nine minutes). Fallon carefully toes the party line in every detail. As for Bryan Pagliano’s assertion of the Fifth Amendment in response to the congressional subpoena issued in connection with the Benghazi investigation, Fallon paraphrases the letter from »

Thoughts from the Ammo Line

Featured image Ammo Grrrll contemplates the disappointment of GREAT EXPECTATIONS. She writes: I reckon I was about three when I had one of the biggest disappointments of my young life. We were at a carnival of some kind and, after enduring sustained, relentless wheedling, Daddy bought me some cotton candy. Whipped pink sugar on a stick – what could be better? Most anything, as it turned out. All that promising pretty froth »

Full of Ifill

Featured image PBS NewsHour anchor/editor Gwen Ifill tweeted her comment on Barbara Mikulski’s announcement that she would cast the thirty-fourth vote to sustain Obama’s anticipated veto of probable congressional disapproval of the Iran deal yesterday (below). Take that, Bibi. — gwen ifill (@gwenifill) September 2, 2015 Ms. Ifill isn’t owning up; she denies that the tweet expresses her point of view. She explained to PBS Ombudsman Michael Getler and others that »