Steve Coll, author of the seminal "Ghost Wars," the secret history of the CIA, Afghanistan and Bin Laden, is in Afghanistan reporting for The New Yorker. One would hope that what he eventually reports on will have more substance than what he admittedly describes as a flimsy posting. It is telling about the state of affairs in the key area of Marjah, though.

It is also somewhat telling about the state of the media when he describes the entourage accompanying Chairman of the Joint Chiefs of Staff Mike Mullen on his trip as "a Bucket List trip for aging national-security reporters."