Tony Soprano and the War on Terror
Over at the New York Review of Books‘ blog, the novelist Francine Prose has a post about the “nominations” process–the Orwellian name for the regular meetings at which President Obama decides which suspected terrorists to target for assassination. These meetings were the subject of a recent article by Jo Beck and Scott Shane in the New York Times, and Prose puts on her literary critic hat in order to offer a close reading of Beck and Shane’s devastating reporting: “As drama,” Prose writes, the President’s “Terror on Tuesday” meetings are “reminiscent of great moments in cable TV: Tony Soprano and his colleagues deciding whom to whack, The Wire’s Avon Barksdale and Stringer Bell conferring on which of their child employees must be eliminated.” Here’s the conclusion to the post:
For [a moral critique of the policy], we need to examine the article’s final line, which continues to resonate after we have set aside our papers. Presumably, pages of transcripts must have been sifted through in order to find (and end with) the following quote from Michael Leiter, former Director of the National Counterterrorism Center.