ANNOYING PUNDITS

US News reports the Administration is briefing former President Clinton and is getting annoyed at TVs talking generals:

The crowd of mouthy retired generals questioning the Pentagon’s tactics in the Iraq war is really starting to irk the White House and the Pentagon. “They’re out of control,” says a top Bush insider. “At best, their information is 10 years old,” says another official. The problem: Ex-officers hired as network analysts for $10,000 or more don’t have the full war picture, though many are getting the inside skinny from their Pentagon pals. Also: Some are crossing the loose-lips-sink-ships line. “It’s their desire to still be relevant,” sneers another Bushie. It even prompted Gen. Richard Myers, chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff, to ask many to tone it down. Yet two remain “general pains,” says the Bush aide: Barry McCaffrey, who predicts 3,000 coalition deaths, and Wesley Clark, who’s eyeing a 2004 presidential bid. Meanwhile, associates of former President Clinton say the White House provides him war updates both to compare notes and give “guidance.” (Ditto for former defense secretaries and national security advisers.) One result: Clinton turned an analytical war speech last week into a three-minute call for support for Bush.

Interesting.

FILED UNDER: Iraq War, Media
James Joyner
About James Joyner
James Joyner is Professor and Department Head of Security Studies at Marine Corps University's Command and Staff College and a nonresident senior fellow at the Scowcroft Center for Strategy and Security at the Atlantic Council. He's a former Army officer and Desert Storm vet. Views expressed here are his own. Follow James on Twitter @DrJJoyner.