Using Iraq to advance left-wing ideology (search), that is the subject of this evening's "Talking Points" memo. As we predicted last week, the liberal elite print press will now begin to use its coverage of Iraq for political purposes. Today, "The New York Times" ran these headlines, "Attacks on Basra Extend Violence to a Calm Region" and "Battle for Fallujah Rouses the Anger of Iraqis Weary of the U.S. Occupation."
"The Los Angeles Times" editorialized on Iraq. "It is tipping toward full-scale insurrection, with no publicly delineated plan for stopping it and no accounting of the cost of the attempt."
First of all, there is no evidence of a full-scale insurrection. And secondly, to publicly announce a war plan would be beyond foolish. "Talking Points" believes the elite print press with a few exceptions, like "The Washington Post" and "The New York Daily News" will still step up the negative coverage of Iraq in an attempt to drive Bush out of office.
Now we deplore that kind of strategy, but we acknowledge the urgency in Iraq. As we told you last night, the Bush administration, specifically C.I.A. Chief Tenet and Defense Secretary Rumsfeld have made serious mistakes in the Iraq conflict. And both men refuse to explain what the heck's going on.
Our billoreilly.com poll question asked you, do you think Tenet and Rumsfeld should be fired? And so far, the voting is very telling. We're leaving the poll open for a few more days.
Also, we've gotten thousands of letters about Rumsfeld, in particular. We will read some of them in the mail segment.
Now there's no question that American security is at stake in Iraq. And that's why we must win the conflict. If you don't believe that, I don't know what to say. The terrorists are taking our measure. If we're defeated, watch out.
That's why it is flat-out wrong for some media to use the war to try to push an ideology. We need fair, unemotional coverage of the situation for the good of everybody.
"Talking Points" gave it to you straight last night. The Defense Department (search) has blown the occupation of Iraq. That's the truth. Whether we can recover and break the back of the terrorists over there remains to be seen, but two things are certain. One, victory is vital for this country. And two, our leaders need to tell us the truth.
And that's "The Memo."
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for the "Most Ridiculous Item of the Day," a short one because we have a lot of mail on Donald Rumsfeld. We have had to reorder the tote bags for mom. They say "the spin stops here" and apparently hundred of you want that for Mother's Day. Billoreilly.com has them. Say hello to you mother for me, please.
Also a week from this Sunday, May 2, your humble correspondent, that is me, will be down in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, at the Office Depot Center. Tickets are available on Ticketmaster and info on billoreilly.com. It's going to be a very fun time. If it isn't, it'd be ridiculous. See you Lauderdale a week from Sunday.
--You can watch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Most Ridiculous Item" weeknights at 8 & 11p.m. ET on the Fox News Channel. Send your comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org