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Hi, I'm Bill O'Reilly. Thanks for watching us tonight.
Well, Saddam Hussein can kiss his ass goodbye. That's the subject of this evening's Talking Points Memo.
Chief U.N. weapons inspector Hans Blix told the United Nations Security Council today that Saddam will not let inspectors interview Iraqi scientists, and that Iraq has been buying missile engines and materials for solid missile fuel. Both of those things violate the U.N. sanctions and open the door for military action against Iraq.
New York Times columnist William Safire says negotiations are under way to have Saddam leave Iraq with his two thug sons, possibly to settle in Algeria.
The Factor has learned that some of Saddam's top generals have also made arrangements to flee Iraq shortly. So in the next few weeks we can expect a regime change in that country.
Of course, that's good, and most Americans know it. In the short term, there could be some negative fallout, but even countries like France and Saudi Arabia are cooperating with the United States, so it is a done deal.
Also a done deal is the continuing isolation of terror suspects captured overseas. A federal appeals court has ruled that the Bush administration has the right to incarcerate enemy soldiers captured on the battlefield indefinitely, even if they are U.S. citizens. So Yaser Hamdi, an American captured in Afghanistan fighting against U.S. soldiers, will now be getting his day -- will not be getting day, I should say, in civilian court.
Again, this makes perfect sense. If a person is actively waging war against the United States, that person is not a criminal. He or she is a combatant. And no country in the world treats combatants as lawbreakers.
What fascinates me is the small group of Americans who oppose removing Saddam and insist that criminal law be applied to people waging war against us on the battlefield. These people always have statutes to cite, but what is their true intent?
Well, some hate the Bush administration, so anything it does, they'll oppose. Some are sincere, but, in my opinion, naive. And others simply despise their own country.
But none of that really matters any more. Saddam will be removed, the war of terror will continue. And hopefully the Bush administration will be able to impose some kind of order in a very dangerous world.
Our duty as citizens is to question what the president does, but also to give the government the benefit of the doubt, especially because protecting American citizens is a very difficult thing to do when religious fanatics are bent are destroying America.
So Talking Points is looking forward to a new Iraq and is encouraged by the rational decision on Hamdi. There is some good news these days.
And that is The Memo.
The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day
Time now for "The Most Ridiculous Item of the Day."
We told you more than a year ago that the United States was not going to destroy the poppy fields in Afghanistan for political reasons. Our government didn't want to anger the local warlords.
Well, the results are now in. DEA Chief Asa Hutchinson says opium production in Afghanistan has risen twentyfold since the U.S. took out the Taliban, and so the heroin is flowing worldwide, causing massive crime and suffering.
Ridiculous? You bet.