LIBERAL JEFFREY GOLDBERG ON CBS NEWS FACE THE NATION; IT'S JUST 20 SECONDS IN - BUT WATCH THE WHOLE THING (VIDEO AT THE LINK).
SCHIEFFER:We're going to turn now to our panel. Susan Page, of course, is the Washington bureau chief for "USA Today." Dana Milbank a columnist for "The Washington Post." Jeffrey Goldberg, national correspondent for "The Atlantic." We're also joined by Michael Crowley, senior foreign affairs correspondent for Politico and CBS News political director John Dickerson.
Michael, let me just start with you. This situation in Yemen, how could we not have seen this coming?
MICHAEL CROWLEY, SENIOR FOREIGN AFFAIRS CORRESPONDENT, POLITICO:Well, Bob, there are so many moving parts in Yemen. I'm sympathetic to the administration trying to keep their arms around a country that a lot of experts describe as basically a failed state.
So for several years now, we've been primarily worried about the al Qaeda franchise in Yemen, known as Al Qaeda in the Arabian Peninsula, perhaps the most dangerous terror group in the world. We talk a lot about ISIS, but these are the guys that put the underwear bomber on a plane on Christmas Day, 2009, have inspired some other near-miss attacks and had ties to the massacre in Paris this month.
So we were really focused on counterterror operations against AQAP, but now you have this insurgency that has to do -- has little to do with America, it has to do with internal tribal and sectarian dynamics in that country.
And I think it just came faster and harder than we expected. The government was more fragile than we expected. And now, those counterterror operations against al Qaeda, as a result of the government basically collapsing, appear to be on hold, or close to it.
And that's -- that has real consequences for American security.
SCHIEFFER:Jeffrey Goldberg, but that's the way it always seems to be lately. It always happens and then we're surprised.
JEFFREY GOLDBERG, "THE ATLANTIC":Right. I mean Mosul fell in -- in Iraq to ISIS and we were shocked. People said it was coming for a year before that.
There's a -- the broader question here is that what we see over and over and over again in the greater Middle East is more and more countries are becoming ungoverned spaces.
Yemen has always had an al Qaeda problem, but now the entire country could fall under the control of a group that can use that territory to plot attacks against America.
We have that across a broad swath of Iraq and Syria right now. Obviously, Pakistan and Afghanistan all right problematic.
And so -- Libya, of course, is collapsing on itself.
So we have a situation in which the president could be leaving office in January of 2017 with hundreds of thousands of square miles of the greater Middle East under the control of terrorists plotting against the West. A terrible problem to have.
OBAMA MIGHT NOT BE A MUSLIM POSTMODERNIST MOLE WORKING FOR IRAN AND THE MUSLIM BROTHRHOOD AND PUTIN, BUT HE MIGHT AS WELL BE!MOLE OR NOT:
YOU KNOW THE WEST IS IN TROUBLE WHEN THE PRESIDENT OF EGYPT IS MORE OPPOSED TO ISLAMISM THAN THE PREIDENT OF THE USA.