West Wing
The War At Home

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Deborah: A | 1 USERS: A+
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With Friends Like These, Who Needs Anemones?

POTUS walks out onto the Oval Office patio, ostensibly to pace around a bit. Charlie comes up alongside him. Jed says that Charlie shouldn't be outside without a coat. Charlie says, "It's not cold, it's crisp." Not really, but I think it would have been cute if he did. Charlie really just says he's okay. Jed keeps purposefully striding forward, and Charlie kind of lets him get away, but asks whether there's anything he can do for him. Jed says, "No, thanks," and keeps walking.

Jed goes back into the Oval Office, where Leo is waiting for him. Leo says, "I checked outside. I thought you'd be having a cigarette." Jed sits down behind his desk and says, "Let me tell you something, Leo. After heroin and cocaine, tobacco's next." You've got my vote, bub. Leo says, "Great. Another criminal empire we can give birth to. There'll be speakeasies all over Chicago where you can get smuggled cartons of Marlboro Lights." ["From Canada!" -- Wing Chun] Leo sits down next to Jed's desk and very calmly tells Jed, "I fought a jungle war. I'm not doing it again. If I could put myself anywhere in time it would be the Cabinet Room on August 4th, 1964, when our ships were attacked by North Vietnam in the Tonkin Gulf. I'd say, 'Mr. President, don't do it. You're considering authorizing a massive commitment of troops and throwing in our lot with torturers and panderers, leaders without principle and soldiers without conviction, with no clear mission and no end in sight.'" He pauses, sighs, sits back and continues, "This war is at home. Its casualties are in our prisons and not our hospitals. The amount of money the American government is spending in Colombia is the exact same amount American consumers are spending buying drugs from Colombia. We're funding both sides of this war and we'll never win it that way." Jed says, "Leo, I can't possibly reverse..." Leo starts to interrupt but Jed continues, "I can't possibly reverse our position on negotiating." Leo insists that no one's going to know: "You don't make another phone call. It happens someplace else. Santos is going to be the one to let him out." Jed points out that there were fourteen people in the room who just heard Santos make him that offer. Leo states, "Those fourteen people keep bigger secrets than this." Jed thinks it over. He stands up and says, "You know what Truman Capote said was the bad part about living outside the law? You no longer have the protection of it. What's to stop me? Two hundred CIA operatives, black ops, two hundred guys with no wives, no kids, no parents...I send two hundred operatives down there and Monday morning I read in the paper Juan Aguilar is dead. What's to stop me?" ["Well, if he had just seen Traffic, he'd know there'd be a new Juan Aguilar the very next day." -- Wing Chun] Leo stands up and gently says, "We lost this one, Mr. President. It was bad intelligence, and we lost this one." Jed shakes his head and says, "It was the Queen's Rook. That's why I couldn't trade the Bishop. It was over six moves ago. Arrange for their immediate release." Leo says, "Yes, sir, Mr. President." Jed adds, "If they so much as experience turbulence on their way out..." Leo repeats, "Yes, sir." Jed tells Leo he wants to go to Dover later tonight. Leo understands. Jed thanks him. Leo thanks Jed and leaves.

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West Wing

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