Krauthammer reacts to Obama G-20 speech

Commentator weighs in on President's news conference


This is a RUSH transcript from "The O'Reilly Factor," June 19, 2012. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.

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BILL O'REILLY, FOX NEWS HOST: "Back of the Book" segment tonight. We asked our pal Charles Krauthammer to select two -- two important parts of the president's news conference this evening. Charles joins us now from Washington.

Now, to calm me down here, all right. In case people just tuned in, I think it was the most boring press conference I've seen in my 37 years of covering the news. I don't think he said anything. I don't think he knows what he's talking about. I think it was pure gibberish. Am I wrong?

CHARLES KRAUTHAMMER, FOX NEWS CONTRIBUTOR: I watched the beginning of the show, and I thought you are great. You were beyond agitation. You were on the verge of an apoplectic reaction. Had I been there instead of in Washington, I would have hosed you down with a valium spray.

O'REILLY: I needed it. I needed it.

KRAUTHAMMER: To do that. And you know, in fact, you're right. It was the worst. It was the dullest press conference since the invention of the radio wireless, let alone the cathode ray tube.

However, you missed the two important parts. No. 1, regarding Syria, Obama actually said in this press conference about the Russians, "I am confident that they do not condone the massacres." The Russians are providing the helicopter gunships that are conducting the massacres.

O'REILLY: Of course. That point with Brit Hume. Putin is a killer, but you can't say that.

KRAUTHAMMER: Obama -- but it's the tone Obama takes, this conciliatory tone. And he had something else to say about the Russians, where he said, "I'm not quite prepared that they are signing on to our idea of a transition where Assad steps down."

What in God's name is he talking about? The Russians are opposing that. The Russians are blocking that. The Russians are supporting Assad. They block all resolutions to bring him down. They have blocked all resolutions for an arms embargo. They are sending helicopter gunships.

They've announced that they're going to send antiaircraft equipment so the Syrians can shoot down anybody in the future who might want to do a rescue or some kind of support of the Syrian people from the air.

And we just had the news that the Russians are preparing to send three ships from their Black Seaport to the Syrian port of Tardis (ph), where the Russians have a base and naval facilities, that Putin has revived for the first time since the Cold War.

And we have a president who says, "I'm not sure they're signing on to our program."

O'REILLY: I know.

KRAUTHAMMER: This is a challenge to the United States and to the west. This is a thumb in the eye to the United States. And this is the Russians planting their flag, saying. "Syria is our property, our client, our state. And we're going to do as we wish."

And the United States has a president who not only says anything to oppose that or to critique it but says, "We're working with them, because I'm confident they don't condone the massacres."

O'REILLY: OK. And really, it was offensive. And what's the second thing you picked up?

KRAUTHAMMER: The second thing I picked up is the subtlety of the gibberish he offered on Europe, which was the only thing he can do, because the fact that he didn't have anything to say or to offer is the perfect reflection of the decline of American influence everywhere in the last three and a half years.

I think it's a bigger decline in U.S. influence in all area of the world -- in the Middle East, in Syria, in Europe, economically and every other way -- than any three and a half years since the end of the is Second World War.

This is a president who speaks for the United States so weakly that nobody cares what he says. The Europeans care what Angela Merkel says about Greece and Spain and Italy. They don't give a damn what the United States says, because it is irrelevant.

In the same way, in the Middle East, if you are a westerly oriented ally and you see the United States get out of Iraq without leaving behind any strategic relationship, any residual American influence, or you see the United States by the admission of its own director of national intelligence, impose sanctions so weak up until now that, by our own admission, it hasn't affected the nuclear program whatsoever, and standing by on Syria why should you care what the United States says?

O'REILLY: "The Wall Street Journal" -- everybody should read the "Journal's" editorial today.

All right, Charles. Thanks for clearing it up for me. I appreciate it.

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