The West Wing (1999–2006): Season 5, Episode 2 - The Dogs of War - full transcript

Zoey Barlet has been held for over a day. An international crisis looms that could have serious repercussions for the administration, let alone the hostage.

Previously on The West Wing:

Walken plans to nominate
a vice president.

Republicans are sending me ideas.
You might wanna round up some names.

- We should be polling on this.
- Margaret!

Get me Angela Blake.

We received an authentic communication
from Ms. Bartlet's kidnappers.

- We bomb Qumar and they kill her.
- They're going to kill her anyway.

Abdul Shareef had nothing to do
with what's happened to Zoey.

You don't know that.

I need you to start two speeches.

- Why two?
- One if they find her alive...

...the other if they don't.

I'm not unwittingly participating
in the commission of a felony, am I?

How was the flight down
from New York?

- Mercifully short.
- Sorry about the Foggy Bottom theatrics.

No, it takes me back to the illicit
affairs of my misspent youth.

So where are we?

Well, tomorrow morning's
New York Times-CNN poll...

...has his approval ratings
up to 76 percent.

- And in 10 days?
- His numbers are gonna crater.

Not level off, crater.
Like a failed Mars program.

Today it's "He lost his daughter.
We're pulling for him. "

Soon it's "I don't wanna have to
pull for a president. "

He did what was constitutionally
appropriate. He upheld his oath.

You want a constitutional debate,
call the dean of Columbia Law.

Our guy quit when things got tough.

Josh must be going nuts.

He thinks we need a poll
in the field.

The White House can't get caught
putting a poll in the field.


I'll call you when it's done.

We need photos.

Bartlet on the phone
with world leaders...

...conferring with advisors,
looking resolute.

He won't do it.

You've been a good friend to him, Leo.
But you have other responsibilities.

People need to believe he'll be able
to govern effectively...

...even if he can't secure
the safety of his family.

They need to know that he is willing
to sacrifice his own child's life...

...for his country.

Would you be?

I wasn't stupid enough
to run for president.


If she dies...

...his approval ratings
will go through the roof.

Secretary Berryhill's here.

Two minutes, then bring in
the ambassador.

-Good morning, Lew.

You've been briefed?

When does it start?

I'm just waiting for word
from Fitzwallace.

Doesn't it remind you a little
of the Japanese on December 7th?

You wanted us to warn them we're
coming so they could shoot back?

I didn't want us to do it
in the first place.

Mr. Ambassador, thank you
for coming so early.

- Thank you.
- You know the Secretary of State.

- Yes.
- Good morning.


I want to express
the crown prince's outrage... the brutal assassination
of his cousin...

...and his sadness with the events
of the last days.

Please extend our sympathy
to President Bartlet and his family...

...and let them know the prayers
of all Qumaris are with them.

Oh, I don't think all Qumaris.

If any of our citizens are involved
in this tragedy...

...I can assure you we will do everything
within our power... bring them to justice.

Including the mullahs?

If the U.S. has sufficient evidence
to implicate--

Your government actively supports
the Bahji.

In addition to stoning adulterers...

...and banning anything written
after the Gutenberg Bible...

...they preach the overthrow of our
government and violence against us.

We are an Islamic nation.

Our kingdom depends upon the
support of the imam--

- You allow Kazir training camps--
- We allow Kazir religious schools.

And you finance radical fundamentalism
throughout the Muslim world.

You don't have
Christian missionaries?

Not government-sponsored

...with explosives, manuals
and weapons training.

Excuse me.

Mr. Ambassador, you can't
expect us to stand idly by...

...while so many of your citizens
are intent on murdering our citizens.

It's difficult to listen to
you characterize...

...the assassination of a member
of our royal family as standing idly by.

We're bombing the Kazir training camps
in Tamar and Laddi.


And we're following it up
with ground forces... detain and interrogate
suspected terrorists.

Thank you for informing us
in such a timely manner.

We are one of the only friendly
governments you have left... a region that is growing younger,
poorer and more radical every day.

If you undermine us,
who do you think takes our place?

Please, tell the president
that I have a daughter too.

-Hey, it's me.

- Did I wake you up?
- No. I'm awake.

I already read the papers,

I'm in the office.

Can you hang on for one sec?

- Hey.
- Sure I didn 't wake you up?

No, really. I already went for a run--

Nice track suit.

You could've said I woke you.
I wouldn't have thought less of you.

Sleeping is....

I don't know, it lacks
a certain masculine-- Whatever.

- Your virility is tied to exhaustion?
- You want coffee?

You brought coffee.

I don't remember
fatigue improving you.

You hungry? Wanna head down,
get a couple of... .


Hey, you got a shower
and a freshly ironed shirt in there?


That soy-chai-whatever thing you drink
is affecting your already addled brain.

Would you stop staring at the TV.

- Is there anything new on Zoey?
- No.

- How long have you been in here?
- I don't know, since about 3.

You see the morning papers?
We have a new speaker.

God, Haffley? They'll be passing out pelts
and slabs of bison in the cloakroom.

Roll call has the GOP resuming
its committee schedule...

...whether Zoey's back or not.

Aside from adding to our nation's
greenhouse-gas problem...

...those hearings are meaningless.

Word is Atwood has Walken meeting
with the Republicans today...

...without any Democrats.

Yeah, they were over last night too.

Were any of you there?

Well, they weren't talking site selection
for the RNC.

Damn it. Haffley?

They're gonna start
legislating again.

Partial birth, federal funding
for family planning.

Walken does anything by executive
order, we overturn it when we're back.

Cheering thought to the women
whose lives are ruined in the meantime.

- Do you even know when you'll be back?
- Not exactly.

Damn it.

If Walken's holding partisan pep rallies
in the West Wing, leak it.

Embarrass Atwood into backing off.

Oh, God.


You look good with a baby in your arms.

Actually, my arm's asleep.

I'm sorry about what I said
on Saturday.

It's a beautiful house.

- I want you to have it.
- No.

-For our kids.
-I can't.

- Well, I don't want it.
- Toby... .

You can't live in a one-bedroom condo
with twins.

I found a house on D Street.

It's a three-minute walk
to the Rayburn Building.

Has something happened?

--the secretary of the Navy.

At approximately 11:10
Zulu Time this morning...

... 12 F- 14B Tomcats
and eight F/ A- 18F Super Hornets...

...flying off
the U.S.S. George Washington...

...bombed three strategic targets
in Qumar.

American intelligence confirmed...

...that each of the sites was
a Kazir terrorist training camp.

President Walken ordered the attack
yesterday evening.

He was notified at 6:30...

... that all 20 planes successfully
completed their missions...

...and were on their way
back to the George Washington.

The president was notified after
the mission was completed.

He was in the White House residence
with Mrs. Bartlet, where he will remain...

... tracking the investigation
into his daughter's disappearance.

- Mark.
- Qumar's an American ally...

...are they participating
in this bombing campaign?

Ambassador Yousif was informed
of the mission this morning...

...but the Qumaris are not

Is there concern the bombing
may force kidnappers...

... to kill or harm Zoey Bartlet?

I don 't speak on their behalf, so I can 't
say what they will or won 't do.

-Has there been any indication...

...of resistance from the Qumari people?

No, not as of this time.

- You see?
- Yeah, I saw.

- 132 phone messages.
- Half want me to switch long distance.

There'd be that many faxes
if we had a fax.

- No fax?
- The FBI boosted it.

So we're not gonna return all those.
See if Leo's around, would you?

- Hi.
- Hi.

There's a guy in my office.

Ryan. Says he works for you.
Forget to tell me?

- He works for me?
- That's what his pass says too.

Hi, it's Donna Moss.

- Hi, Josh Lyman.
- Ryan Pierce.

Didn't know if I should come,
with what's going on.

- It's been crazy here.
- Figured if there was a problem--

- Okay, who are you?
- Ryan Pierce.

Right. No, I got that part.
I mean, who are you?

- Leo didn't tell you?
- Leo McGarry?

Wait here.

Leo's in his office.
Am I being passed over?

- What?
- If you're bringing someone in over me--

I don't even know who that guy is.

You get the feeling we don't have any
idea what's going on around here?

- What?
- Hear anything about...

...Atwood moving a legislative agenda
while Walken's in the Oval?

- No.
- Okay.

Word is the Republicans
are coming back over today.

Is Leo invited? Are you?

I think they're planning
to start legislating.

Partial birth, school vouchers,
maybe even ANWR.

They've got the votes.

They haven't moved on Medicare again
because we'd veto.

- You get any sleep?
- Haffley?

- We can filibuster in the Senate.
- Not on partial birth or tax cuts.

- What?
- We're getting our asses kicked.

You going to Leo? Wait for me.

Here. Read this. I'll be right back.

A once-in-a-lifetime chance to slam-dunk
your agenda and solidify your base.

Plus, Walken's gonna ride off
as the presumptive Republican nominee.

Atwood wouldn't love to cinch
that with partial birth?

Three new Supreme Court justices?
A few new weapon systems?

I'm not being paranoid.
Is he in there?

- Got a minute?
- Not really.

The Republicans are
gonna start legislating.

Pick issues we can't filibuster
and ram them through.

They won't.

- They're meeting secretly again.
- It wasn't secret yesterday.

- They were in the Roosevelt Room.
- To plot a strategy.

This isn't the grassy knoll.

- Walken's not gonna take the office.
- You've asked him?

- You been drinking?
- We need to leak it to the press.

The GOP are conspiring to use
a national crisis...

- impose a right-wing agenda.
- Josh... .

The president needs to sign
the second letter.

We nominate a strong VP,
once he's confirmed...

...if the president needs
to recuse himself, he can step aside.

-Go through all this again?
-We should at least take it to--

Damn it, Josh. The man's child
is missing, probably dead.

He doesn't give a damn
about politics right now.

That's why we have to.

- Where are we on the vice president?
- I'm working to--

I want three names on my desk
by 7 a.m. tomorrow.

- I swear to God, Josh, if you--
- It's not about that.

There's a guy in my office,
says he knows you...?

Ryan Pierce.
Yeah, he's your new intern.

I thought we decided I wasn't gonna
have to have interns anymore.

- No, you decided.
- Okay.

- Pierce? Is he a "Pierce" Pierce?
- Yeah.

- They're ready for you.
- Okay.

I know it's crazy, but Josh
might not be wrong about--

We did this to ourselves.
Now we have to live with it.

- They're bombing Qumar?
- We're bombing Qumar.

How are you and Will coming
on the speeches?

We've started working.

The second one, for if Zoey doesn't--

I don't want the president
to know I asked you--

Yeah, no, of course.

Hell if I can even figure out
how to write it.

How's he doing?

Not so good.

- He knows if there's anything we--
- He knows.

- What's that?
- Congress.

- What are they doing outside?
- Praying for Zoey.



"Today we affirm this solemn truth:

America is the strongest force for
freedom the world has ever known--"

So strong you can trigger
a constitutional crisis... dosing the first daughter's
vodka gimlet.

"Anyone who dares to invade
the sanctity of America's house...

...will be caught and punished
with all of America's might. "

Meaning what, we're gonna
bomb their prison cells?

You're treating Zoey like an abstraction.

- It needs to be a man supplicating--
- Supplicating?

He's not gonna stand in front of the
cameras and rub gravel through his hair.

We need a tone of defiant leadership.
A return to commander in chief.

What's the alternative?
Admitting he was licking his wounds...

...but now he's ready to come back
and take the nuclear launch codes?

I was just trying a few--

"I thank the Lord that Zoey is back in her
mother's arms, yet our nation grieves. "

It's a new and difficult time.

He needs to acknowledge that
we've all been visited by mortality.

"I'm not alone in thinking how fragile
is the security we take for granted. "

Leading with failure?
What kind of message is that?

If we go two lines without
using the phrase...

... "unimaginably large military arsenal,"
we're out of our minds.

- Want me to start on the second one?
- You're already doing it.

The Qumari have not issued
a statement yet.

I'm sure they're trying to shape
an appropriate response...

...somewhere between
a hunger strike and declaring war.

- Good luck.
- No rioting yet in other Arab capitals?

- It's early yet.
- What about the U.N.?

China's on board, but Syria's
currently on the Security Council.

They will need handholding.
I'll go up this afternoon.


C-141 s will have the regiment
on the ground in six hours.

Any casualties?

A Marine CH-53 transport helicopter...

...was hit by enemy RPG fire
leaving the landing zone...

...just a few minutes ago.

Two pilots and four crew members
are KIA.

Agent Casper?

Still no communication
from the kidnappers.

We've interrogated 51 members
of the mosque the suspects attend.

The Saudis have agreed to
assist us in interviewing...

...the suspects' families
in Saudi Arabia.

They won't allow us
to conduct interrogations...

...but we can have
someone present.

Better they do it, anyway.

- Why is that, Mr. Atwood?
- They're not as squeamish.

What about the five
Bahji sleepers up in Portland?

No, nothing.

Excuse me, Mr. President.
Mr. Steinholtz is here.

Thank you, everybody.

Deficit projections don't look great.
We're gonna need a stimulus package.

Or revenue enhancements.

Significant tax cuts,
reduction in discretionary spending.

Is something on your mind, Leo?

So now what?

You have a suggestion?

This office isn't always
about doing something.

Most of the time it's about
not doing something.

Steve, give us a minute.

What's your point?

You're meeting with
Republican leadership...

...without any Democrats
or Cabinet members present?

What are you accusing us of?

- You weren't elected.
- Neither were you.

I have an obligation
to President Bartlet--

Don't lecture me about responsibilities!

Then start acting like
you understand them.

If you're uncomfortable serving
as my chief of staff, Leo...

...feel free to recuse yourself
until I'm gone.

Thank you, sir.

We started this, Leo.

- This isn't about Shareef.
- You're right, it's not.

It's about our allowing situations in these
countries to develop in the first place.

We choose the order and certainty
of petty despots...

...over the uncertainty and chaos
of developing democracies.

Shareef ordered the slaughter
of innocent women and children.

He wasn't a nationalist
or a fledgling democrat...

...he was a cold-blooded murderer.

Six more American boys are dead.

And that doesn't make you angry?

Of course that makes me angry!

The ultimate weakness of violence
is that it is a descending spiral.

Returning violence with violence
only multiplies violence...

...adding deeper darkness to a night
already devoid of stars.

Dr. King.

I'm part of that darkness now, Leo.

When did that happen?

Dr. King wasn't wrong.
He just didn't have your job.

Need any help?


- Harvard, huh?
- Yeah.

- Cum laude.
- Don't be too impressed with that.

Harvard gives those out
like paper placemats.

Summa's the hard one. I knew, like,
one person who got summa that year.

She was my girlfriend.

Where'd you go?


You graduated from college, right?


Oh, Harvard.

Josh. Vetting files on Knighton.

My dad went there too.
My sister, my Uncle Bunky... .

- Uncle Bunky?
- Yeah. Ridiculous, huh?

Atwood gave a quote to the Times.

You're a Pierce? Pierce Bedroom
in the residence, that's you?

My great-great-grandfather.

- Has Toby seen this?
- Found you first.

What's it say?

Hey, you know Eliot Cabot? He would've
been there around your time.

No, I don't think so.

- I knew his sister, Perrin. Pretty well.
- Yeah, I bet you did.

You know Hamilton Pew?
Ham Pew?

I don't get it.

- Where's Toby?
- He went down to the mess.

Ham's the reason the squash team
went 9-0 in '89.

All-lvy three years in a row.
I mean... .

I wasn't much into squash.
I was more of a Crimson guy.

- Crimson?
- The campus newspaper.

Yeah, that figures.

- What's that supposed to mean?
- Nothing, that's great.

- You implying I didn't have a social life?
- You said you had a girlfriend.

- I had a lot of girlfriends.
- Really?

You guys always walk so fast?


I'm okay.

Where'd you spend your free time,
one of those finals clubs?

No, let me guess.
The Spee? Hasty Pudding?

The Pudding is not technically a final.

Toby. Steve Atwood in the Times.
It's already on the website.

You were one of those guys who used
to harass me on my way to the library...

...drunk out of your minds,
wearing those ridiculous red chinos.

You or me?


Your son's sacrifice for his country...

...for the safety and security of us all,
will not soon be forgotten, sir.

I appreciate that, sir.

You and your family will be
in our prayers tonight.

Thank you, sir.

How many more?


When do I get to the fun part
of being president?

The fun part, sir?

Yeah, flying around in Air Force One...

...getting a good tee time
at Hilton Head.

I doubt you'll have much trouble
getting good tee time, sir.

This is a weird-looking room.

Truman called it the crown jewel
of the federal penal system.

- You a Truman fan? Me too.
- Yes, sir.

I would have taken you
for an Eisenhower man, sir.

If Truman were alive today,
he'd be a Republican.

Oh, I doubt that very much.

You know, it's funny.
This was never an ambition of mine.

I never wanted to be
president of the United States.

Neither did Mr. Truman.

I'll start another call, sir?

Thank you.

"This isn't about partisan politics,
it's about what's best for the country.

However long this crisis lasts...

...we're fortunate to have
President Walken here to lead us. "

- Great quote.
- Thanks.

"However long this crisis lasts,"
that's... .

Nice turn of phrase.

Of course, a more accurate description
of that time might be:

"Till Bartlet decides to sign
the second letter...

...and boot Walken
out of our White House. "


You're campaigning in the middle
of a national tragedy.

Zoey Bartlet's breathing
through a straw...'re test-driving sound bites
for the next election?

Straight answer, once in your life.
What are you guys up to?

Closed-door meetings,
planting quotes in the Times.

What's next, spontaneous speeches
questioning Bartlet's fitness to lead?

You don't get it, do you?

Republicans are in awe of Bartlet.

He recused himself
in the only way he could.

In a way envisioned
by the Constitution.

The Framers were afraid
of the president's daughter...

...being kidnapped
at musketpoint?

The notion of the 25th Amendment... that the institution matters
more than the man.

Bartlet's decision was more

...because he gave power
to his opposition.

The institution may matter more,
but it's your guy protecting it, not ours.

A truly self-sacrificing act
usually involves some sacrifice.

So now you're gonna nail us
to the cross.


You beat the terrorists
at their own game.

We're not stupid, Josh.

We try to use this to our advantage,
it'll blow up in our faces.

We'd seem callous and unfeeling... contrast to Bartlet's extraordinary
gesture of courage and patriotism.

And anyone who thinks otherwise...

...has a particularly craven way
of looking at politics.

- What happened?
- AI Jazeera has a tape of Zoey.

- They broadcast it four minutes ago.
- What's he saying?

He's claiming responsibility
for the kidnapping... the name of the Bahji
and Sulayman Mahmoud.

-Who is that?
-One of the terrorists...

...they want released from prison
in Pakistan.

- What is that she's holding?
- This morning's USA Today.

They are again demanding
the prisoners be released.

Is she even conscious?
She looks drugged.

Why is the quality so bad?

We think it's a digital photograph
e-mailed to Al Jazeera...

...probably over a modem.

We're sure that's her?

It's her.

What else is he saying?

He is denouncing the United States,
the kingdom of Qumar...

...and our attack on holy Muslim lands.

And he says if every American soldier
is not out of Qumar in 24 hours...

...then they are going to shoot her.


- I'm sorry, I didn't mean to startle you.
- No. No, sir.

Just surprised to see you here,
Mr. President.

They haven't revoked my pass yet.

Please. Sit.

Is there something I can
do for you, sir? Anything...?

Do you have a cigarette? Abbey won't
let me smoke in the residence.

I usually keep a pack
hidden in the office.

-I probably have a couple of cigars.
-No, thanks.

I just thought maybe somebody
on your staff....

What are you working on?

The speech for when you come back.

How's it coming?

Fine. Tough.

Mind if I have a look?

- It's not finished yet.
- That's all right.

I'm still working on the ending.

Where's the other one?

What other one?

The other speech.

We only wrote one.

- You write this?
- No. Will.

But we won't need it, sir.

"The Lord giveth
and the Lord taketh away."

You mind if I take this with me?

Maybe I can bum a smoke
off one of the agents.

You take care of yourself,
Mr. President.

Can you hang on, officer?

Excuse me, sir.

We may have something.

You been home since this started?

I'm all right.

You guys any closer
to naming my successor?

You were serious about that?
I thought you were joking.

I promised Laura a month on a boat...

...kicking around the Caribbean
for our honeymoon.

Thirty-two years later, I think her
patience is finally wearing a bit thin.

You sail?

Last thing I captained
weighed 7000 tons.

I should be able to figure out
how to ease a 32-foot Catalina...

...into a slip in Kingston.

Yes, sir.

Mr. McGarry, sir. Admiral.

The FBI are on their way over.
They think they found Zoey Bartlet.

Virginia state trooper responded
to a domestic disturbance call.

A couple got drunk, he let her out by
the road in the middle of nowhere... she dialed 911 on her cell.

Trooper couldn 't find her, she'd
wandered off to get out of the rain.

Guy checked an old barn across
from where she said she'd be.


She's got a possible clavicle fracture,
irritation because of tear gas...

...and ringing in her ears
because of the flashbangs.

No sign of sexual assault,
but she's still out of it.

- They're gonna run a tox scan--
- They all dead?

Sharpshooters got two using
the spike mike and thermal scanners.

Other one was sleeping,
tried to grab a weapon.

We found her locked in a closet
in the back bedroom.

Agent Casper?

- Mr. President.
- Good morning, sir.

- You ready to do this?
- Yes, sir.

- You gonna run again?
- I haven't decided.

If you do, let me know.

I'll come campaign for you.

I'm not so sure that'd be a plus
in my district, Mr. President.

Stick around for the press conference?

Thank you, sir, but I think the nation's
best seeing one president at a time.


Thank you.

I have the final version of your speech
for review, Mr. President.

I won't need it. I'm gonna use
the one from last night.

Last night, sir?

I made a few changes.
I hope you won't mind.

No, sir. Of course not.

- Thank you, everyone.
- Thank you, Mr. President.

- How much time do I have, C.J.?
- They're gathering now.

We told the networks to be ready
in 10 minutes.

Excuse me, will the first lady
be joining you--?

- No. She's at Walter Reed with Zoey.
- Thank you, Mr. President.

Would you like that
on the TelePrompTer?

No. That won't be necessary.

So who's the lucky winner?

The president hasn't decided.

- You got a favorite?
- The president hasn't decided.

Josh, they're gathering.

Nice office.

--exhibited by so many of
our government's leaders.

And now, we're going live
to the Rose Garden...

... where the president
will address the nation.

Did we ever find
those five Bahji sleepers?


- Mr. President.
- Mr. President.

- Are they ready for us, C.J.?
- Yes, sir.

- Where are we on a vice president?
- We have several candidates, sir.

Ready for your decision.

Ladies and gentlemen,
the president of the United States.

The Lord giveth
and the Lord taketh away.

Words I did not fully understand
until our daughter...

... was taken from us three days ago.

But now we can rejoice and be glad,
for that which was lost has been found.

That my child is back
in her mother's arms... serendipity and grace.

A second chance that will not
slip through our hands again.

I wish that I could tell you
that there's some new policy...

...some new weapons system...

...a silver bullet, perhaps,
that could meet this moment...

... that could keep us safe from
the terror that's now among us.

But if I were to say that, I'd be lying.

All I can promise you is that I will fight
with every fiber of my being...

... with every weapon in our arsenal...

...and with every ounce of God's grace
to keep us strong and free...

...and safe.