No matter what station or nation Geraldo Rivera reports from, Fox News Channel's new war correspondent can't help but kick up controversy.
Whether they like him or hate him, viewers are definitely tuning in for Geraldo — and reading his on-line dispatches from Afghanistan!
Here's a sample of this week's mail:
— I'm shocked. Geraldo's stories from Afghanistan are terrific. I'm actually looking for his reports on Fox News, and this comes after years of avoiding him on CNBC.
— If there were no journalists in Afghanistan, what would Geraldo have to say? His reporting seems centered on the media and himself, rather than on our troops. His most frequent theme is "How brave I am to be here where journalists are not respected." Well, where are journalists respected anymore?
— Geraldo's coverage in Afghanistan is nothing short of boring. Prior to his participation in the war coverage he had an infomercial stating his patriotism. He contradicted the notion that he was only motivated by patriotism by calling the war "the biggest story." He has always been a sensationalist and still is. I've listened to those suggesting to give him a chance and I've listened to several of his most recent reports. He has shown the living conditions and results of the Taliban oppression - none if this new or unusual. I don't expect those that are responsible for hiring Geraldo to criticize him but I do expect that there will be unspoken regret. Geraldo Rivera cannot do justice to the type of coverage I have come to expect and respect from Fox News.
— I have to admit as much as I boycotted Geraldo on CNBC because of his liberal bias I am beginning to believe what he said about September 11th changing his life. I feel his bravery and commitment to good journalism without spin or opinion has made me look forward to his reporting. He is also being honest. Last night when asked by Laurie Dhue if he was packing a gun he answered yes. Good for him. I asked my wife what difference there was between Geraldo and myself concerning carrying a gun and her response was Geraldo is in a war zone. I responded... aren't we at war and wasn't the United States of America attacked on Sept. 11?
— Please ask Geraldo to clean up his foul mouth. His frequent use of the word, "damn" is not only highly unprofessional, it's also a bad example for teenagers who may be watching (I have two). I'll quit watching his reports if he doesn't stop this unnecessary swearing.
— I considered it a good day for Fox when Paula Zahn left you for CNN. I always thought that your network was much better than she could ever be. However, by hiring Geraldo Rivera, I am beginning to have a different opinion. This punk states that he is a patriotic American. Where the heck has he been for the past 15 years? He has certainly not been showing his patriotism. This is a two-bit punk who deserves CNBC as much as CNBC deserves him. They both are horrible and no one watches them! I must commend you, you certainly sent this slob to the most appropriate place, however you screwed up when you sent a camera man with him. What did the camera man do to you? Please give the camera man a second chance and bring him back home.
— I just watched Geraldo Rivera's report to the "War on Terror" with Laurie Dhue about eight western journalists who have been killed in Afghanistan so far. He made a point of showing his armed guards and talking about how they are good and trustworthy men. Then Laurie asks Geraldo, with this look of excited anticipation on her face, if he has armed himself. I thought it was a great question and I was waiting for Geraldo to whip out his Kalashnikov and show America what real journalists are made of. Instead he felt the need to squirm out of the question for fear that telling America that he is carrying a gun in a war zone will cost him his job. Since when is it against company policy for journalists who have obviously been identified as legitimate targets by the enemy to defend themselves? It was quite obvious that he is indeed travelling the Afghan countryside with a firearm. What reasonable person in their right mind wouldn't? He even said clearly that he wouldn't be going down without a gunfight, but he couldn't just say that he was toting a gun through a war zone. This is a case of political correctness gone overboard.
— I have always respected Geraldo Rivera as a quality journalist and am thrilled he has joined your staff. I logged in on your news channel listening to Geraldo's video that answered my questions about the CIA agent.
— Geraldo just won't cut it.
— As a viewer of the Fox News Channel and a regular browser to fox news.com on the internet I am disappointed to learn that Geraldo Rivera has joined the Fox News team. I feel that his bias leaning toward the left can greatly hurt the image that Fox News has of fair and unbiased reporting. While I
have nothing personally against Mr.. Rivera, I believe his views to be too "liberal" to accurately report the truth without a liberal political bias.
— I see Geraldo hasn't lost his anti-gun bias. Of course all those Northern Alliance troops hanging around Kunduz are armed with "AK-47 machine guns" and RPGs. Get a clue... they're soldiers! They have just recaptured 3/4 of their country back from the Taliban. They could not do this with wet towels and pillows.
— I'm not a fan of Geraldo Rivera, and personally felt that Fox made a mistake when he joined the network. But, I must admit that his report from the front line was factual, to the point, and without the political slant that Gerald Rivera normally pursues in his reporting. I have always turned to Fox News first because of your straight forward reporting, and I'm glad to see this has not changed.
Garett R. Nadrich is the editor of When Teens Write at www.teenwriters.net