By Brian Williams, Anchor and managing editor
I met with General David Petraeus in New York today, the first time I've seen him since his elevation to the Command of Centcom, the sprawling, regional Central Command that first became well-known to the general public during the time of Gen. Schwarzkopf and the first Gulf War. Its always interesting to hear the General's assessment of things: beginning with the present state of the wars in Iraq and Afghanistan (he is just back from there) and his view of the Middle East -- all the way to the Horn of Africa.
We talked about this time of transition, the state of the military and the possible effects of an Obama presidency on geopolitics. At the end of the meeting, a friend of the General's toasted Bill Frist, the former Republican Senator from Tennessee.
To those unfamiliar with the Petraeus bio, it might sound like an odd thing to do -- but the backstory is this: Petraeus received a grievous accidental bullet wound the chest when a fellow soldier at Ft. Campbell tripped and discharged his weapon. The surgeon who was called in to operate that day, at Vanderbilt Medical Center, was Bill Frist. The story concludes with the unusual way Petraeus was discharged from the hospital: he convinced his reluctant doctors to let him go, after just a few days of recovery from chest surgery...by performing 50 pushups on the floor of his hospital room.
We've got a lot of news tonight: on the Obama cabinet, the Detroit automakers, piracy on the high seas, and Ann Curry's big (and harrowing) adventure. The news from Wall Street is almost too depressing to mention, but we'll report it anyway. We hope you can join us tonight.