Last night, we criticized NBC News and The Washington Post for employing an analyst, named William Arkin, who is a hater of the U.S. military. If you missed it, my "Talking Points" are posted on billoreilly.com from last night. And the points references Arkin's vile description of American military people as mercenaries among other things.
Reaction, of course, has been enormous. There's anger that news organizations like NBC and The Washington Post would give a guy like Arkin any credibility at all.
Arkin has a long history of far-left activism, but NBC News failed to inform its audience of that, even though he appeared on NBC programs at least 80 times.
This kind of thing has gravely damaged NBC News. As we predicted, ABC's evening news is about to overtake NBC's broadcast. Last week, ABC did beat the NBC nightly news in a key demo and is closing in on total audience.
As for The Washington Post, spokesman Eric Grant says the paper will have no comment on the Arkin situation. —That means the newspaper does not feel it owes its readers any explanation at all. How arrogant.
Now the Iraq war has become an emotional hand grenade in America. The polls show most folks believe the war's not going well and they want out because they believe the Iraqis themselves aren't worth our sacrifice. — It's a performance issue for most.
But far left zealots like William Arkin will use the chaos in Iraq to say America is immoral. That tactic is despicable and should be condemned by all of us — no matter what our political beliefs.
The far left would you have believe the Bush administration lied to get us into war. For oil, for revenge, for whatever. In order to believe that scenario, you would have to believe that Bill Clinton, Tony Blair, and most other world leaders were in on the lie as well.
Nearly every intelligence agency on this earth believed Saddam had an arsenal of deadly weapons. But poor WMD intelligence doesn't excuse the poor post Saddam planning by the Bush administration or the failure of the Iraqis to put aside ancient hatreds and work together for freedom. — That combination, poor planning with hatred on the part of the Iraqis might doom Iraq.
Even so, American military families do not deserve misguided fanatics calling those who serve "stupid", "paid killers", or even worse. The families do not deserve outlets like NBC News and The Washington Post giving sanctuary to haters of America. What the military does deserve is an acknowledgment that the USA and Britain tried to do something noble in Iraq. And a future strategy that does not rely on unrealistic expectations.
America is facing some very difficult days ahead and some difficult decisions. This is no time for irresponsible people.
And that's "The Memo."
Most Ridiculous Item
A couple of press notes: The Toronto Star newspaper published an article that said the U.S. government paid for my trip to Guantanamo Bay. Of course, that's not true. However, the Star today did publish a clarification, which we appreciate.
There's also a little piece in U.S. News & World Report that says the Stephen Colbert program gives their guests presents for appearing, but "The Factor" does not. Very true. But one cable news executive is quoted as saying, "This is O'Reilly! Just coming on "The Factor” is the goody bag." Well said. -- We don't have to bribe our guests.
—You can catch Bill O'Reilly's "Talking Points Memo" and "Most Ridiculous Item" weeknights at 8 and 11 p.m. ET on the FOX News Channel and any time on foxnews.com/oreilly. Send your comments to: firstname.lastname@example.org