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Americans Not Bellicose Enough For Chickenhawks Hannity And Gingrich

Reported by Ellen - April 3, 2007 -

Once again Newt Gingrich was unable to stick to his commitment to “rise above the fray” of a nasty campaign in order to have an “idea-oriented, positive dialogue” with the American people. Instead, last night (4/2/07) on Hannity & Colmes Gingrich and Sean Hannity used the Iranian captives for their own divisive purposes and to make political hay. Alan Colmes called Gingrich on it. With video.

It took Gingrich just a bit more than a minute into his seven-minute interview before he started attacking Americans. “I’m very saddened that on the left all the people who have worried about terrorists in Guantanamo, I haven’t heard a single one of them talk about the degree to which the Iranians are breaking international law, violating the Geneva Convention, acting in ways that are clearly illegal.”

Update: As Think Progress reported, both Democrats and Republicans have condemned the seizure.

Colmes said, “(You) use this as a club to beat the left because they don’t have the rhetoric that you feel matches the situation so you want to make this a left/right division in this country.”

Oh no, Gingrich insisted, then complained about the Democrats again, this time for leaving Washington without a resolution condemning Iran. “They’re very quick to attack the United States over how we deal with terrorists,” Gingrich said. It was an ominous implication that Democrats care more about terrorists than the good of the country - despite the fact that the majority of the country voted Democratic in the last election.

Colmes asked, “Mr. Speaker, why use this, at a time like this of international crisis, to simply attack Democrats? It’s not an American issue, although they are our allies, we support the British. But why use this to be divisive in this country?”

Oh no, that’s not what he was doing, Gingrich insisted. “I said it would be wonderful if people on the left would speak up.” Then, he moved straightaway to complain again that Democrats weren’t condemning enough of Iran.

“Patriotic” Sean Hannity made it clear he thought Gingrich wasn’t being divisive enough. “Mr Speaker, it’s worse than that.” Hannity complained about Nancy Pelosi’s trip to Syria (though not about any of the Republicans’ trips) and condemned her for not passing a resolution condemning Iran before she left.

Gingrich made a not-so-thinly-veiled accusation that Democrats are endangering national security. “It’s very dangerous for America to start having 535 Secretaries of State, and 535 Secretaries of Defense, all of whom happen to be elected to the US Congress, none of whom were appointed to those jobs.” “Patriotic” Gingrich never considered that it might also harm America for a presidential wannabe to insinuate that an American leader like Nancy Pelosi, is a traitor, just because he disagrees with her. “I think this is clearly going to allow the dictator Bashar al-Assad a chance to try to exploit divisions in the US to the advantage of his dictatorship.” Funny how Gingrich also "forgot" about the Republicans visiting Syria, too. In the next segment (not in the posted video), Colmes confronted Gingrich on that inconsistency and Gingrich insisted the reason he criticized Pelosi, only, was because Pelosi is the Speaker of the House. Oh, riiiight.

Hannity went a step further and (again) accused Democrats of “emboldening the enemy” because of their legislative efforts to end the war in Iraq. In his Hanctimonious voice, he asked, “Do you think (the Iranian situation) is somewhat connected, that we’ve sent a message to the world that we’re weak, that appeasement is alive and well?”

Gingrich didn’t need much prodding. He said Democrats sent a message “they were prepared to accept defeat in iraq… and that they were prepared to live with the consequences of weakness in a region where weakness can devour you.” If that’s positive dialogue, I’d hate to see a negative one.

With even more disdain, Hannity complained about a London Telegraph poll that found 48% of those in Great Britain reject force as a last resort, if diplomatic efforts failed completely to free the sailors and marines being held in Iraqn. “What does this say about Europe, in general? What does this say about the understanding of the nature of the war on terror?”

Gingrich answered, “I think we’re in a cycle right now where our elites are preaching defeatism.”

Wait a minute, Mr. Cheatin’ Chickenhawk! Who are the elites here? Those who avoided the draft via deferments, as Gingrich did? Those who avoided military service when they were eligible, as Hannity did? Those who earn millions while talking tough from a television studio? Or those who might actually have sons and daughters doing the fighting and dying? And because we know that the majority of Americans want the war in Iraq to end and do not want a war with Iran, it’s hard not to conclude that the ones who are out-of-touch, living in a chickenhawk ivory tower, are none other than Gingrich and Hannity.