CNN news anchor Jake Tapper is getting his Afghani war book turned into a Hollywood action flick with major tinseltown leading men signing on for the action. On Thursday, The Hollywood Reporter broke the news that several actors have been selected for the onscreen adaptation of The Outpost. The cast includes a few big names such as Orlando Bloom and Scott Eastwood, as well as up-and-coming Sharper Objects star, Taylor John Smith.
Sometimes CBS’s Madam Secretary wants so badly to fix the problems in today’s world that it blows logic to solve them. The latest episode, however, may be one of the most backwards examples to date. In a single episode, the hour-long drama tries to convince us both that the United States’ beginnings were as bad as the Taliban and that the Taliban can be progressive.
Monday was supposed to be the sentencing hearing for Army Sergeant Bowe Bergdahl, but his lawyer motioned to dismiss the case and asserted that President Trump’s critical comments during the 2016 election swayed the military court. Both CBS Evening News and NBC Nightly News seemed to buy into the claims as they lamented how the admitted deserter would have to wait until Wednesday to learn his fate. They also omitted his praise for his Taliban captors.
In a military courtroom in Ft. Bragg, North Carolina on Monday, Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl pleaded guilty to charges of desertion and misbehavior before the enemy and faces up to life in prison. Back in 2014, President Obama traded five dangerous terrorists to get Bergdahl back, and in a flawed political calculation, championed him as a 'hero.' Despite the massive blowback that followed the ill-advised move, the Big Three Networks omitted that from their Monday evening reports.
In a brazen attack on a civilian facility on Wednesday, terrorists in Afghanistan launched an unsuccessful rocket attack on the international airport in Kabul. The apparent target of the attack was Defense Secretary Jim Mattis and the airplane he arrived on, but he was far from there at the time. Despite this heinous assault on civilians in the hopes of killing a U.S. official, and the network previously mentioning it, CBS Evening News failed to report an update on the situation.
All eyes were on President Trump Monday night as he addressed the nation about the country’s future actions in regard to the war in Afghanistan. And without giving too many details, the President declared that there would be some form of troop increase but noted that there were conditions to our aid and limits to the costs we were willing to bear. But that wasn’t enough for MSNBC’s Lawrence O’Donnell, who bemoaned Trump’s address and eagerly awaited White House leaks of the details.
Secretary of Defense James Mattis made a visit to Afghanistan Monday, where he and General John Nicholson stated that a top U.S. adversary was backing the Taliban. “9,000 U.S. troops are on the ground trying to help the Afghan army hold back a resurgent Taliban,” announced Anchor Scott Pelley during CBS Evening News, “But the job is getting tougher by the day thanks in part to Moscow.” The revelation was chilling considering U.S. troop could be coming up against those weapons, and it went unreported on ABC and NBC that evening.
Tuesday on the View, host Whoopi Goldberg led a segment based off of the ridiculous question, "Is America becoming like the Taliban?" Whoopi referenced Monday’s show, where co-host Jedediah Bila talked about terrorists hating American values like freedom and democracy. Tuesday, Whoopi wondered if it was actually America who hated freedom and was trading it in for "Taliban values" with Trump in the White House.
Late Tuesday afternoon the White House announced a list of 64 convicted criminals they planned to pardon, including 209 others whose sentences were being shortened. “The Obama presidency is ending on a note of forgiveness,” declared anchor Scott Pelley at the start of CBS Evening News. One of the most controversial sentence commutations was that of Private Chelsea Manning, who stole and released thousands of classified documents to WikiLeaks. The network most excited by the development, by far, was NBC, but none dared to cover the release of an unrepentant terrorist.
In a December 2 dispatch covering Sgt. Bowe Bergdahl's request for a presidential pardon appearing at Page A18 in Saturday's print edition, New York Times reporter Charlie Savage insisted that President-Elect Donald Trump's 2015 campaign rally assertion that U.S. soldiers had died searching for Bergdahl after his desertion was false. Savage even claimed that allegations made by soldiers serving in Afghanistan at the time that "five to seven Americans had died searching for him ... (were) proved false."
This June was marked by a wave of radical Islamic terrorist attacks – in Turkey, in Orlando, in a Paris suburb, in Israel, and elsewhere around the world. As the bodies piled up and nations were gripped with grief and rage, broadcast networks (ABC, CBS, and NBC) did their best to call the horror anything other than the work of terrorists.
In his second speech on Sunday morning's terrorist massacre in Orlando, Florida, President Barack Obama said on Monday that "the shooter was inspired by various extremist information that was disseminated over the Internet," that "we see no clear evidence that he was directed externally," and that "this is certainly an example of the kind of homegrown extremism that all of us have been so concerned about for a very long time."
The press, led as usual by the Associated Press, is certainly cooperating with those characterizations. Presumptive Democratic Party presidential nominee Hillary Clinton has clearly made up her mind that Omar Mateen committed a "lone wolf" attack, and that banning "assault weapons" would somehow prevent future such attacks. The problem, of course, is what one means by "homegrown" and "directed."