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O'Reilly Guest: " ... Middle Eastern Islam is so sick that you begin to despair about whether there is any hope for it ..."

Reported by Marie Therese - February 9, 2006

The title of this post sums up the attitudes of Lt. Col. Ralph Peters, who writes an opinion column for the New York Post, which is owned by Rupert Murdoch, who also owns FOX News Channel. Peters is also a prolific author of fiction and non-fiction books. His article entitled "The Counterrevolution in Military Affairs was recently published in the Weekly Standard, which is also owned by Rupert Murdoch. Bill O'Reilly interviewed Col. Peters and Danish Broadcasting U. S. Correspondent Thomas Falbe on February 7, 2006 about the Muslim uprisings.

Falbe started things off by saying the Danes were very anxious about the situation. "Some of my colleagues in the Middle East feel like they are hunted," Falbe said. "They cannot pose as Danes. They have to say they are Norwegians or Swedes or whatever. So I think a lot of Danes feel that the threat of terror has moved closer to Denmark and they are, of course, afraid of what might be going on in the Middle East. You've seen several people today getting killed in Afghanistan."

O'Reilly and Falbe then discussed the role of Muslims in Danish society. Falbe noted that the 400,000 Muslims in Denmark form the largest single minority block in that country and that, as in France, there is a deep-seated feeling that the their community has been frozen out of the job market. O'Reilly made sure to mention that Denmark is an "entitlement society" that pays for everything, the implication being that the Muslims are only there for the freebies.

The rest of the segment featured Lt. Col. Peters badmouthing Muslims and Europeans with O'Reilly acting as a rubber stamp.

O'Reilly gave Peters a good opening by claiming the demonstrations are indicative of a "clash of civilizations" and that Europe "really isn't up to the task."

Here is my transcript of the rest of the interview (my commentary in italics).

PETERS: Well, certainly, once again the Europeans have made a mess that they don't know how to clean up and we all know who winds up, strategically, cleaning up Europe's messes.

Let's see now. George Bush invaded Iraq, destroyed its infrastructure, provided a new and fertile ground for baby Al Qaedas, weakened the American armed forces, which allowed Iran to renew its nuclear program, forcing us to rely on the Russia and the Europeans for help in negotiating with the Iranians. But that didn't stop Peters from bashing the Europeans! Since when has any FOX News analyst ever let the truth get in the way of demagoguery?

PETERS: Now, Bill, I certainly would never make apologies for the psychotic behavior in the Muslim world. It just makes you despair to see it. It's intolerable and inexcusable.

Reread Peters' last statement and insert the word "Jewish" for "Muslim" and it's Nazi propaganda. Or insert the word "Negro" and you're transported to a 1950's KKK meeting in the dark of night with a fiery cross. Riots occur when people are economically deprived. Something sparks the tinder and a mass of humanity (generally male) erupts in fury. The igniting incident might be a jury decision exonerating four white cops of the brutal, videotaped beating of a black man. Or it could be the forced evacuation of settlers from homes they'd been guaranteed would be theirs in perpetuity. Or it might a silly cartoon depicting the image of a religious leader. There have been riots, large and small, throughout human history.

For those of our readers who are interested, there is a long list of American riots, compiled by Cyrus Vance, President Lyndon B. Johnson's Deputy Secretary of Defense, entitled: "Chronology of Major Occasions on Which States Have Requested Federal Assistance in Suppressing Domestic Violence". It's quite a read and doesn't include any riots after 1967. It was probably prepared because LBJ was having a little trouble with a bunch of uppity college students, angry about the Vietnam War. Such a list gives the lie to the false image of a peaceful and prosperous America that people like Peters and O'Reilly like to paint for the FOX News audience!

PETERS: But that doesn't let the Europeans off the hook. You know they talk a lot about freedom of the press. With freedom of any kind comes responsibility. And publishing those cartoons - badly drawn at that - of the Prophet Mohammed was irresponsible. If the Danes or other Europeans wanted to make a difference, to be responsible, their cartoonists could have worked on Saudi hypocrisy and the oppression of women, terrorism, which they give a pass to so much of the time, the rogue regimes in the Middle East. But, no, they chose this sort of nasty frat boy prank to poke it in Muslims - in the eyes of Muslims and profane the image of the Prophet. Now, no matter what we may think about the right to publish, et cetera, they have behaved irresponsibly and created an enormous problem. They insulted religion gratuitously.

O'REILLY: OK. I, I agree.

PETERS: And, while, I don't excuse the Muslims ...

O'REILLY: It would be like takin' the IRA [Irish Republican Army] to task and then putting a bomb in Jesus' cloth on the cross, 'cause the IRA are all Catholic. It would be offensive but I don't believe Catholics would start to burn down things, Colonel ..

PETERS: No.

O'REILLY: ... and cause death and destruction all over the world, if that had happened.

Catholics permit likenesses to be made of Jesus and the whole panoply of saints. Therefore, Catholics start off with an acceptance of the right of an artist to craft such an image. Muslims do not, under any circumstances in any way shape or form, allow any kind of image of the Prophet or his family to be drawn or carved. It is a cardinal precept of their religion, the worst of all blasphemies, punishable in some countries by imprisonment, torture or death. In addition, the Jyllands=Posten newspaper clearly knew that the drawings would be offensive to Muslims, as evidenced by this statement, appended to the original publication of the cartoons on September 30, 2005:

"The modern secular society is rejected by some Muslims. They demand a special position, insisting on special consideration of their own religious feelings. It is incompatible with contemporary democracy and freedom of speech, where you must be ready to put up with insults, mockery and ridicule. It is certainly not always attractive and nice to look at, and it does not mean that religious feelings should be made fun of at any price, but that is of minor importance in the present context. [...] we are on our way to a slippery slope where no-one can tell how the self-censorship will end. That is why has invited members of the Danish editorial cartoonists union to draw Muhammad as they see him." [Source: Wikipedia]

The Copenhagen Post added this:

“Jyllands-Posten called for and printed the cartoons by various Danish illustrators, after reports that artists were refusing to illustrate works about Islam, out of fear of fundamendalist retribution. The newspaper said it printed the cartoons as a test of whether Muslim fundamentalists had begun affecting the freedom of expression in Denmark.” [Source: NewspaperIndex.com

Since this interview it has come out that three years ago the very same paper, which is considered centrist-right in its political leanings, REJECTED cartoons that poked fun at Jesus because they would be "offensive" to Christians.

PETERS: And that's absolutely true and as I said, you know, the civilization, especially of middle eastern Islam, is so sick that you know, you start to despair about whether there's any hope for it whatsoever. And you know, what we're seeing - and this - by the way, these cartoons played into the hands of extremists in the Muslim world.

O'REILLY: Oh, absolutely. They're orchestrating it.

PETERS: They played in (sic) the hands of the Syrians, the Iranians. And so I go back to the fact that the Europeans are always lecturing us that we're naive, heavy-handed, clumsy Americans and they're so sophisticated. Well, I'll tell ya', this - they weren't very sophisticated this time. They were irresponsible and people are dying because they behaved as they did.

O'REILLY: In the long run do you think Europe will now come closer to the Untied States and help us in the terror was because of this?

PETERS: Well, you know, the Danes have been good allies ...

O'REILLY: Yes, they have.

PETERS: ... but, once again, when we do something wrong, they criticize us and so, when they do something wrong, we'll criticize them.

O'REILLY: No, but I mean collectively.

PETERS (makes exasperated gesture): Collectively.

O'REILY: Collectively, we have France riots. We have [Theo] van Gogh dead in Holland. We have Madrid bombing and now we have the Danes under assault. Will this finally wake Europe up so they help the United States in the war on terror?

PETERS: It will be one more step toward waking them up. But, the Europeans take a lot of waking up, Bill. (O'Reilly chuckles) I'm afraid it's going to take a colossal disaster on the European continent.

O'REILLY: Alright. I have one more question for you, Mr. Falbe. The Danish government has not apologized. Do you foresee that it might?

FALBE: No, I don't. The Danish government position has been that they do not print the press so they cannot apologize for anything that some newspaper decide[s] to put in the press. It is not the Danish people. It is not the Danish government who has printed these cartoons ...

O'REILLY: It's the newspaper.

FALBE: ... it's the newspaper.

O'REILLY: Right.

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