The Rachel Maddow Show | November 16, 2012
>>> i was a combat correspondent for the marine core. a canon in one hand and a rifle in the other. and a story teller 's worst nightmare is becoming the story. so there i was, one fateful day in may. an explosive device tore through a 26-ton vehicle filled with marines, ammunition, throwing us ten feet into the air. six men to my right, some fathers, all sons, gave their lives. how i didn't make seven god only knows. and i believed that it is for this purpose so that i may share with you the things that i have witnessed so that you will know the things that you demand of us and we gladly provide. i get to share these stories with you. things that all of us should know. i'm blessed. there are things in my life now, blessings i can count that may have never existed. i can connect with fellow warriors in ways that others can't because i understand what it means to transition home, how difficult it can be. but in all respects, my transition has been easy. because you see my scars. i wear my uniform everywhere i go. but there are those among us in our community, in our families who have scars that are never seen. and i hurt for them. as you should. it's not easy. that's the burden we carry for our country. i didn't do -- i almost swore, i was close. i didn't do a darn a darn thing. you see, the marine corps is a department of the navy , so i can cuss like a sailor. but i'm a marine, i'm better than that. [ applause ] i didn't do a darn thing in the military alone. not once did i stand by myself. i can't see a greater national travesty. is it any worse, ask yourself, any worse to leave a wounded man in battle than to have him return home and struggle alone?
>> retired marine corporal aaron mankin, speaking for a dinner this weekend for afghan veterans of america. as we're trying to figure out how to do right by the veterans who have been fighting drawn out wars for 11 years, barely noticed in washington was the confirmation for the general who would take over the war that is still raging in afghanistan . even less noticed this week was the start of negotiations in kabul for how long we're staying after we end the war in 2014 . those negotiations started yesterday. yesterday, nancy pelosi told me she's staying on as the top democrat in congress and would like to see the end of 2014 timeline for afghanistan moved up. she said that she would like to see us draw down faster. ever watch chris matthews ' weekend show? on sundays, he does "the chris matthews show " on nbc. and on that show he asks his guests for a prediction for the week ahead. and here, courtesy of chris and his producers, is a reason you should watch this weekend's show on nbc.
>> welcome back. tell me something i didn't know.
>> i got a call this week from a republican congressman seeking to call attention to his efforts to move up the timeline for the removal of our troops from afghanistan . now, this may indicate that there's more bipartisan support for that line of thinking than most people may realize. we've had bipartisanship on issue by issue, even in recent times, but not on the broad, general thing. but what this tells me and what people think about, with this in mind, there may be things about which congress can reach some bipartisanship issue by issue as we go along.
>> i think a true concerted view is we can only do so much. how long can we stay in that country?
>> nobody can be bothered to care about the war we're still in is the beltway common wisdom. i think that's getting old and worp out. the main honoree for that dinner was supposed to be general davis petraeus. for obvious reasons, that did not happen. he resigned on friday because of his sex scandal . but if one 10th of his attention to his career carries over to the war he left could be enough. his sex scandal has affected the map who is now the commanding general in afghanistan . this week was the confirmation of the new general. this week, the main capitol hill proponent for staying in afghanistan forever humiliated himself in misplaced conspiratorial grandstanding and got called out for it on live television by a very confident president who just walloped the next guy from the republican party after he trounced senator john mccain who is having a bad time of it right now. this week, the president and the two sides on capitol hill sat down to talk about our fiscal future and finding some place where is the spending isn't necessary or isn't justified. at a time when we have 68,000 americans in afghanistan at the cost of $1 million per soldier per year for two more years? at least? everybody is saying it's impossible that the politics can change the course of the war there. but people just don't care. i think people care. i think democrats and republicans, even some in congress care. i think this is a door that will open if anyone pushes on it in washington. and now might be the