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O'Reilly guest Ralph Peters makes case that American press is helping terrorists

Reported by Chrish - May 2, 2006

Bill O'Reilly's sour grapes made a bitter whine on The O'Reilly Factor today 5/01/06. O'Reilly played the part of good cop to retired Lt. Col. Ralph Peters' bad cop, admonishing the press for "revealing wartime secrets" and calling the Pullitzer Prizes' worth into question.

O'Reilly set the tone by saying that in a time of war we all should want America to win and he doesn't think that's the case - a lot of people want us to lose in Iraq. Peters agreed - absolutely - and said he thinks that among the "semi-celeb and celebrity journalists", patriotism is "down-market, not for their kind." Comment: How many more ways can they possibly come up with to exclude people from their rapidly shrinking patriotism clique?

Good cop O'Reilly said that even in time of war or depression, if the government becomes oppressive to its people, doesn't the journalist have an obligation to get that story out? No, says Peters - if there is a threat to the Constitution or to the welfare of the American people, it is government agents (intelligence professionals) who need to get that story out - patriots like himself. He served, he swore an oath, he's American - but nobody has the right to give away wartime secrets "just because they don't like the outcome of a presidential election." Declaring his following remarks to be "without hyperbole" he says "when the press published our wartime secrets and gives a gift to our enemies, the only difference I see between spies like Jonathan Pollard or Eldrich Ames and the journalist who publish our secrets, is that the journalist do more damage."

Good cop: "How did the 'NSA wiretap expose', that is, that the Bush administration (Bush himself!) had ordered some listening of Americans talking overseas to suspected Al Queda without a warrant - how did that damage the country?"

Peters thinks that's important, because they weren't tapping O'Reilly, or Peters, or the viewers - they were tapping suspected terrorists or their connections. And by revealing that we were doing it, you just told the terrorists 'get off your cell phones, get off the net.' And we have to have a way to spy on our deadly enemies who killed Americans and wish to kill more Americans.

Comment: These so-called "secrets" that they try to conjecture, that the US government was tapping international calls, would have been a given. Anyone affiliated with Al Queda or other terrorist organizations communicating internationally with someone in the States would expect to be monitored and take extravagant precautions to scramble, route and re-route, and use disposable accounts. These are no amateurs and they learned nothing from the revelation. What FOX has been obfuscating for months now is that the secret NSA program involved wiretaps and monitoring of US citizens on US soil, against FISA law and the fourth amendment.

Continuing his bogus premise that the articles were written out of political spite, Peters says "Mid-level bureaucrats who don't like the boss don't get to decide which secrets to give away to the press or to our enemies or to anybody else." it's as clear-cut to him as it could possibly be.

Asked why the Pullitzer committee gave the awards to these three journalists (The New York Times' James Risen and Eric Lichtblau and the Washington Post's Dana Priest), Peters first said that "these were not awards for high quality, high risk journalism. None of them were reporting from the hills of Afghanistan - they were just printing material they were given by disaffected people working in our government. These awards were political awards. They were anti-Bush awards, they were anti-administration awards, they were left-wing awards." Peters says there is plenty to criticize about the Bushies but you don't get back at them by publishing national secrets.

The big BORe said "we analyzed the Pullitzer committee and it is overwhelmingly left-wing, and I tend to agree with you (ya think?) - very sympathetic; don't like the Bush administration, don't like the Iraq war, don't like the way the war on terror is being waged." As the music started ending the segment he asked one more question, real quick (just enough for a succinct soundbite): did the revelation about the secret interrogation prisons do any damage?
YES, enormous damage was done, played into the hands of America-haters all around the worls, into the hands of Al Queda and its propagandists...Yes. It did great damage.

Comment: First let me say that I am very relieved that Peters, author of "New Glory - Expanding America's Global Supremacy" is retired. He is one disdainful jingo-patriot along the lines of Ollie North.

O'Reilly was playing the part of calm journalist-interviewer, much like Sean Hannity tried to pull off a few weeks ago, letting his guest channel his identical views. The difference between Hannity's piece and this one though is that this mini-me, Peters, was disrespecting journalists and the highest awards available for their craft. If O'Reilly was truly immersed in his part as "journalist" he would have defended both the prestige of the award and the accomplishment of the winners, who did what journalists are supposed to do: they uncovered an abuse of power and let the American people know so we can hold the abusers accountable. All the accusations of harm done by the reporting is meant to stifle the free press and aid the administration in covering up their wrongdoings. Even when he pretends to be a real journalist Bill O'Reilly just doesn't get it.

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