Anne Kornblut is a fool:
(Taken from a comment
at Glenn Greenwald)
Commentor: "[Kornblut] doesn't understand that the questioner's praise of Bumiller is sarcastic"
Potomac, MD: McClellan needs to get over himself. The nerve of blaming the media for their failures in the run-up to the War. Elisabeth Bumiller so eloquently explained how things work the night before the Iraq War started, 4,000 dead American soldiers ago: "it's live, it's very intense, it's frightening to stand up there. Think about it, you're standing up on prime-time live TV asking the president of the United States a question when the country's about to go to war. There was a very serious, somber tone that evening, and no one wanted to get into an argument with the president at this very serious time.".
Anne E. Kornblut: That's a good point. (I'm a huge Bumiller fan). To that I would add that most reporters, or at least this reporter, looked continuously for cracks in the facade internally, and the assistance of an aide such as McClellan in helping us understand the flaws is essential. I would urge all future White House aides to remember that sometimes the press can be a friend when things inside start going wrong.
Further in the on-line discussion was this:
Re. Potomac, MD: Wait a minute, Bumiller was advocating stenography. Methinks if her relative (or yours) was about to head over to Iraq, she might have done more than wait for "cracks in the facade". That's just whistling by the graveyard. Obviously, none of YOUR children, nephews or nieces will ever enlist in our Armed Forces, but you might want to develop some empathy for the countless people in flyover country who actually lose loved ones when we go to war. Not because you're a journalist, but because you're a, you know, human being.
Anne E. Kornblut: As one with a parent and two grandparents buried at Arlington Cemetery, I can tell you that this has nothing to do with taking war lightly. If anything, I think we all felt a great sense of deference toward the presidency, as an institution, and wanted to be respectful on the eve of war, trusting that any president would only take such an important step in good faith. That isn't to say we shouldn't have been more skeptical and pressed harder in print -- and I have no doubt we all will next time, if there is a next time -- but it wasn't out of cluelessness that we did not do more.
Anne E. Kornblut is the Washington Post's National Politics Reporter