Patterico's Pontifications


As Petraeus Meets With Trump, Word Of A New Investigation Is Leaked

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:00 pm

Today David Petraeus met with Donald Trump regarding a possible Secretary of State position. After Trump focused heavily on Hillary Clinton’s irresponsible and (to most onlookers) criminal mishandling of classified information as Secretary of State, it’s more than a little bizarre that Trump would consider placing in the same position someone who was actually convicted of the crime for which Hillary Clinton was only investigated. Even if you think Petraeus is a smart guy who might do a good job — and I do — the comparison to Hillary Clinton is a tough mental hurdle to surmount.

And now, with word of a new investigation related to the Petraeus scandal breaking today, it’s getting tougher still:

The Defense Department is conducting a leaks investigation related to the sex scandal that led to the resignation of former CIA Director David Petraeus, The Associated Press confirmed Monday, the same day Petraeus was meeting with President-elect Donald Trump in New York.

Petraeus, who could be in line for a Cabinet nomination, arrived at Trump Tower in early afternoon. He walked in without taking any questions from reporters.

A U.S. official told the AP that investigators are trying to determine who leaked personal information about Paula Broadwell, the woman whose affair with Petraeus led to criminal charges against him and his resignation. The information concerned the status of her security clearance, said the official, who was not authorized to discuss an ongoing investigation by name and spoke on condition of anonymity.

Disclosure of the Broadwell information without official permission would have been a violation of federal criminal law.

The latest twist in the case could complicate Petraeus’ prospects of obtaining a Cabinet position in the Trump administration, resurfacing details of the extramarital affair and FBI investigation that ended his career at the CIA and tarnished the reputation of the retired four-star general.

I find it bitterly amusing that the existence of the investigation into a possible leak was . . . leaked. This leak feels very pointed, somehow.

It also throws a new monkey wrench into the dramatic narrative arc of The Trump Transition Show, which (as I noted earlier today) is beginning to resemble a TV reality show.

Vice-President Pence tells us there are important announcements tomorrow! Will the Secretary of State position be one of them?? Or is this just a dramatic head fake??? There’s only one way to find out!!! Tune in tomorrow for the exciting conclusion!!!! (Or not!!!!!)

UPDATE: I promise I wrote this post before I saw this post by Allahpundit, which also mocks the TV-style drama of the situation. Great minds think alike . . . and sometimes, so does mine.

[Cross-posted at RedState.]

Rampage In Ohio, Motive Still Unknown…

Filed under: General — Dana @ 5:22 pm

[guest post by Dana]

Horrible news:

An Ohio State University student was shot dead by police after he plowed into pedestrians with a car and then stabbed multiple people with a butcher’s knife at the OSU campus in Columbus this morning, officials said. The scene is now secure, officials said.

Eleven people were transported to local hospitals, officials said.

OSU said in a statement that the “injuries include stab wounds, injury by motor vehicle and other injuries that are being evaluated” and that “facts are still being verified.”

The suspect was identified as Abdul Razak Ali Artan, an OSU student, officials said at a press conference this afternoon.

Artan was born in Somalia and living in the United States as a legal permanent resident.

As officials search for a motive, this report will hopefully provide them with a clue. Artan apparently posted on his Facebook page three minutes before the attack:

“I can’t take it anymore. America! Stop interfering with other countries, especially the Muslim Ummah. We are not weak. We are not weak, remember that.”

The post also invokes the name Anwar Al-Awlaki, a radical American-born al-Qaeda cleric, describing him as a “hero.” Al-Awlaki was killed in 2011 but his propaganda has been linked to several domestic terrorist attacks in the years after his death.

“If you want us Muslims to stop carrying lone wolf attacks, then make peace,” the posting reads. “We will not let you sleep unless you give peace to the Muslims.”

And then there is this:

Ohio State’s student newspaper, The Lantern, ran an interview in August with a student named Abdul Razak Artan, who identified himself as a Muslim and a third-year logistics management student who had just transferred from Columbus State in the fall.

He said he was looking for a place to pray openly and worried about how he would be received.

“I was kind of scared with everything going on in the media. I’m a Muslim, it’s not what media portrays me to be,” he told the newspaper. “If people look at me, a Muslim praying, I don’t know what they’re going to think, what’s going to happen. But I don’t blame them. It’s the media that put that picture in their heads.”

From Rep. Adam Schiff (D), the ranking member of the House Intelligence Committee:

“While we are still awaiting more information from the investigation into the OSU attack, it bears the all of the hallmarks of a terror attack,” Schiff said. “The fight against ISIS, Al Qaeda and other terror organizations and their global incitement to radicalism, must be carried out on battlefields far away, and by confronting online propaganda here at home.”

However, we are cautioned not to jump to any conclusions: “What we don’t know: What the attacker’s motives were.” One guesses that would include the sort of on-the-surface assessment that Schiff made.

And for kicks, here’s a round-up of tweets from the We Demand More Gun Control crowd. With self-righteous gusto, they automatically assumed that a firearm was involved in the attack, and then immediately politicized the horrible event. The group really outdid themselves in looking more awful than usual, especially as the “weapon” used in today’s attack was an automobile, and a knife…


Trump To Meet With Romney, Corker Tomorrow

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 10:30 am

Donald Trump is meeting with Mitt Romney tomorrow. Oh, and Bob Corker, too.

Mr. Trump is expected to have three meetings on Monday and Tuesday as the secretary of state sweepstakes heats up — retired Gen. David H. Petraeus, Mr. Romney and Senator Bob Corker of Tennessee, chairman of the Foreign Relations Committee, according to two people briefed on the schedule.

Mr. Romney has been the preferred choice of Vice President-elect Mike Pence and some business leaders from whom Mr. Trump has heard. But contention over him possibly being chosen has led Mr. Trump’s aides to open the process to other options, such as Mr. Corker.

This is such a reality show. The New President meets with the Old Nemesis! Will all be forgiven? Or will Donald refuse to let bygones be bygones? It’s an all-new episode of Trump Transition! Tune in tomorrow at 8!!!

It’s certainly interesting to speculate about what’s going on here.

I lean towards the theory that Trump is doing all of this this to humiliate Romney. I don’t think Kellyanne Conway breathes without instructions — so when she goes on “the shows” and trashes Romney, I believe she is being paid to do so. I think Trump ginned up this controversy 1) as a way to entertain people; and 2) as a way to emphasize that he, and not Romney, is the Big Dog.

What’s that, you say? Isn’t being elected President revenge enough? For Trump, I doubt it. He strikes me as the kind of bully who likes to rub it in. I think Trump wanted a few days of his supporters trashing Romney on “the shows” as a way to salve his ego, and rebuke Romney for the harsh things he said about Trump during the campaign. The demand by Trump’s advisers that Romney apologize, under this view, was just part of the vindictive blowback.

“No apology, no secretareee!”

But my boundless cynicism about Trump leaves room for a different scenario, in which Trump does pick Romney.

Because I also think Trump looks at his cabinet picks as if he’s casting a TV show. Trump has told his aides that Romney “looks the part.” And a desire for a photogenic administration would explain the otherwise perplexing choice of Nikki Haley as the ambassador to the U.N.

Meanwhile, Romney is affecting a studied indifference:

In other words: “I don’t need this.”

[Cross-posted at RedState.]

P.S. David Petraeus? I thought it was a bad thing when a Secretary of State had a penchant for mishandling classified information! I guess that’s only true for the other side . . .

Time Is a Tickin’ Away…

Filed under: General — Patterico @ 7:59 am

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