West Wing
The Birnam Wood

Episode Report Card
LTG: F | 1 USERS: B-
If A Character Is Assassinated In The Woods...

Josh is standing outside, holding his cell phone in his hand. Kate tells him, "Cell-phone service sucks up here." He tells her that this is one of the few good spots in the area. She asks who he's calling at 2 in the morning. He tells her he's calling Germany, where it's already morning. She asks him how "his assistant" is doing. I'm glad they remembered that Kate never met Donna. Josh keeps trying his cell phone while Kate talks about a book on the Six Day War that she read. She suddenly has an inspiration, and tells him to find Toby and Will and that she will meet them at Aspen. (Which is presumably the name of a cabin or conference room.)

Josh has found Jed, along with Toby and Will, because they are all listening to Kate talk about a proposal that was made in peace talks in 1967. The essential deal is that Israel would give the Palestinians the same kind of custodial rights over the Muslim holy sites in Jerusalem that a nation has over its foreign embassies. The idea seems promising, because it does not require Israel to give up sovereignty over Jerusalem while still giving the Palestinians a sovereign-like status over the parts of the city that are most important to them. The only catch is that when Israel made the offer in 1967, they wanted peacekeepers placed in Jerusalem and the West Bank. Abbey (who I did not notice before) suggests that the U.N. will provide peacekeepers, but Toby points out that U.N. peacekeepers have no credibility with Israel: "It'll have to be us." Will estimates that it would take 20,000 troops to patrol the West Bank, and Kate suggests that European nations might provide 10% of that number. Which leaves 18,000 U.S. troops in the West Bank. Josh whispers to Will, "Where the hell is Leo?"

Leo's phone is ringing in his cabin, and he wakes up. He looks like hell. Of course, if you woke me up at 2:00 AM, I'd look pretty crappy myself, and I don't think I'm about to have a heart attack. At least, I hope not. (Uh oh, spoiler.)

Back in Aspen, the discussion is continuing. Leo enters the room just in time to hear Josh ask whether "folks in the West Bank are just going to roll out the welcome mat for G.I. Joe when he climbs out of his Humvee in Ramallah?" Leo asks them what they're talking about, and when he hears that it's about placing U.S. troops in the West Bank, he asks, "And we think that's a good idea?" Josh: "Some of us do." Leo speaks out forcefully against the idea. And then Jed indicates that he supports the proposal. Leo: "Can I speak to you privately for a moment?"

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West Wing




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