Update, 4:15 p.m.: Huffington Post’s Michael Calderone reports that Loeb is writing a first-person piece for the Style section that is expected to run in tomorrow’s paper.
What is it with Washington Post local editor Vernon Loeb and national-security hagiographies? In 2003, he co-wrote the story that made soldier Jessica Lynch a hero—-until it collapsed, leaving the Post ombudsman to slam it as “based on pretty flimsy sourcing.” Now he’s become a bit player the downfall of CIA Director David Petraeus: Along with alleged Petraeus mistress Paula Broadwell, Loeb is the co-author of a glowing biography of the former general.
For his part, Loeb isn’t talking. While he briefly told the Los Angeles Times that he didn’t know whether Broadwell had a relationship with Petraeus, he declined to comment to the Huffington Post. I called Loeb to talk about Broadwell and the book, titled All In, but he hasn’t responded.
This week is already shaping up to be a tough one for Loeb. In addition to the Petraeus scandal, Post ombudsman Patrick Pexton slammed the local coverage that Loeb oversees. But there could be a silver lining for the editor: The book, once hovering around 126,000 in Amazon’s book sales rankings, has shot up to nearly the 100th top spot.