Author Archives: Scott Johnson

An MSNBC state of mind

Featured image As an outlet for political news and commentary, MSNBC is not completely worthless. It provides a window onto the left-wing mentality. Indeed, it gives us a comprehensive view: the political ego/superego/id of Al Sharpton and company. One gets the impression that medication has already done all it can to make it fit for public consumption. A kind of cure will come only when management pulls the plug. The Free Beacon’s »

The Clinton/Kendall claptrap

Featured image After seeking a two-week extension within which to respond to the outstanding subpoena issued by the House Select Committee on Benghazi for Madam Hillary’s email and request for email server, Clinton attorney David Kendall responded by letter that copies of all responsive documents had been turned over to the Department of State and the server had been wiped clean. The Democrats on the House Select Committee have posted David Kendall’s »

Losin’ in Lausanne (6)

Featured image Omri Ceren writes by email from the negotiations in Lausanne: After a bruising week for the Obama administration – where literally every news day started with a scoop about another Western concession or Iranian backtrack – things are limping to a close. The AP says there will be something by tonight, which the wire gingerly describes it as “a statement that lacks specifics[.]” It’ll take about 7 seconds for today’s »

Not bashing Bashar

Featured image Charlie Rose interviewed Bashar al-Assad last week. 60 Minutes broadcast a portion of the interview last night (video below, transcript here). Rose reported that the interview was conducted “under the conditions that we use Syrian TV technicians and cameras.” Assad inherited the Syrian regime from his father, who took it over via a coup in 1971. Syria is of course engaged in a bloody civil war that has become a »

Losin’ in Lausanne (5)

Featured image Omri Ceren emailed two reports from Lausanne overnight. Here is the first: The P5+1 meeting with Iran got out a little while ago. Total running time: 1 hour, 14 minutes. Functionally nothing happened this weekend from a news perspective – very little came out of talks, foreign ministers were still en route, etc. – which gave people plenty of time to muse over the Iran talks debate in the broadest »

Keeping Bill at his best

Featured image In the New York Times, Patrick Healy and Amy Chozick worry over Bill Clinton’s role in Madam Hillary’s presidential campaign in a story headlined “To avert repeat of 2008, Clinton team hopes to keep Clinton at his best.” In this case, “keeping Bill at his best” doesn’t mean what it might mean to you or me. There is no mention of Bill’s lady friends — “the Energizer,” for example. No »

In Lausanne, Mr. Motthagi sums it up

Featured image The latest from the negotiations with Iran over a deal blessing its nuclear program indicates that the catastrophe should arrive on schedule, before the March 31 deadline. In the New York Times Michael Gordon reports that “Iran’s top negotiator says accord can be drafted.” Gordon’s report should be read in the light of Adam Kredo’s March 26 Free Beacon story “US caves to key Iranian demands as nuke deal comes »

Losin’ in Lausanne (4)

Featured image Omri Ceren writes from Lausanne on the impending deal with Iran: Fabius arrived at the Beau-Rivage this morning and was marched by reporters at 10:20am. Key lines: “I am coming here with the desire to move towards a robust agreement… We have made progress on certain issues but not enough on others.” French concerns revolve around centrifuge numbers, the sunset clause, and verification. Verification may prove particularly problematic in the »

Hillary destroys evidence [updated]

Featured image The House Select Committee on Benghazi sent Hillary Clinton a subpoena for all her emails related to Libya on March 4. The committee statement on the issuance of the subpoena to Clinton is posted here. The committee followed up with a letter dated March 19 formally requesting Clinton’s email server. A PDF of the letter is posted here. After obtaining a two-week extension, Clinton attorney David Kendall responded by letter: »

Harry Reid to step down, says not due to “exercise accident”

Featured image Until today, New York Times reporter Carl Hulse reminds us, Senate Minority Leader Harry Reid has insisted he’s running for reelection. In the video below, however, Reid announces that he will not face the voters again next year. He will step down from his Senate seat. Reid still insists (and Hulse dutifully states it as a fact) that Reid’s serious facial and eye injuries resulted from a New Year’s day »

Losin’ in Lausanne (3)

Featured image Omri Ceren writes from Lausanne by email with comments for media covering developments related to the negotiations with the Islamic Republic of Iran: Secretary Kerry and FM Zarif started off the second day in a row with a 10:00am meeting (technically 10:08am), which again including US Energy Secretary Moniz and Iranian Atomic Energy Organization chief Salehi. Presumably the rumor mill will pick up around lunch time again, but in the »

A shocking breach

Featured image Yesterday we noted the Arutz Sheva story reporting on the Obama administration’s disclosure of formerly top secret data regarding Israel’s nuclear facilities and capabilities. The disclosure came in the form of the declassification and release of a detailed, 386-page report on Israeli and NATO nations’ nuclear facilities and capabilities; the Pentagon declassified only the part about Israel, continuing to classify the parts regarding other countries. The document was quietly declassified »

Thoughts from the ammo line

Featured image This week we celebrate with Ammo Grrrll the ONE YEAR ANNIVERSARY of this column. She writes: Hey, fans, Top Commenters, trolls and friends! Guess what? This is the First Anniversary of Thoughts From the Ammo Line! The first column debuted on March 30th, 2014. I had been standing in the ammo line at Walmart for hundreds of hours over the year-long ammo drought, with plenty of time to chat with »

Losin’ in Lausanne (2)

Featured image Omri Ceren writes by email from Lausanne to elaborate on the AP story reporting that the United States is considering letting Tehran run hundreds of centrifuges at a once-secret, fortified underground bunker in exchange for limits on centrifuge work and research and development at other sites. Omri writes: And just like that, PMDs and Yemen are those things we were talking about in the last news cycle. For the rest »

Obama continues assault on Israel

Featured image Reader Martin Karo writes: Arutz Sheva reports on the Obama administration’s release – a broadcast, not a leak – of formerly top secret data regarding Israel’s nuclear facilities and capabilities. The damaging revelations come via the Defense Department’s publication of a detailed, 386-page report on Israeli and NATO nations’ nuclear facilities and capabilities. In an overtly political act, the Pentagon declassified only the part about Israel, continuing to classify the »

Losin’ in Lausanne

Featured image The Wall Street Journal has a scoop on the endgame in the negotiations with Iran over a deal on its nuclear program. The United States is folding on issues involving the possible military dimensions of Iran’s past work. The descent into absurdity continues. Jay Solomon and Laurence Norman report (story accessible here via Google): Iran’s refusal to implement the IAEA work plan threatens to undermine the prospects for this comprehensive »

The best of Matt Lee

Featured image It seems to me highly improbable that the AP’s diplomatic correspondent would be as big a thorn in the side of State Department flacks as Matt Lee is. Lee elicits the obligatory verb “grilling” whenever one refers to his inquiries at State Department briefings. We have featured videos of Lee “grilling” State Department spokesmen Jen Psaki and Marie Harf several times here. This week Lee “grilled” Psaki over the deparment’s »