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Only Hannity & Colmes Guest To Discuss Levin-Reed Iraq Redeployment Vote: Joe Lieberman

Reported by Ellen - July 18, 2007 -

“Fair and balanced” FOX News once again proved itself exactly the opposite last night (7/17/07) as Hannity & Colmes hosted no Democrats in its discussion of the Democratic maneuver to force an overnight filibuster of the Levin-Reed Iraq redeployment bill. The sole guest was a harsh critic of the bill and Iraq war hawk, Joe Lieberman. With video.

Lieberman could have been speaking for Sean Hannity as he claimed that the amendment would be “legislating defeat and handing a victory to Iran and Al Qaeda, our two most dangerous enemies in the world today.”

Sean Hannity melodramatically and misleadingly brought up the National Intelligence Estimate that the threat from Al Qaeda has increased, without mentioning (and Lieberman didn’t correct him) that the reconstituted threat is originating from the Pakistan/Afghanistan border, not in Iraq.

Hannity tried to prod Lieberman into saying that he’ll join the Republicans but he stopped short of that. “I’m really disappointed by the direction in which the Democrats have gone,” he said, but “I’m going to take it issue by issue. I’m not really thinking about anything like that now.” He later hedged on saying that he'd support the Democratic presidential candidate.

In a statement that would have made President Bush proud, Lieberman declared that the surge is working. “All the evidence is that it is succeeding,” he told Hannity.

Alan Colmes brought up the recent Bush administration report indicating that only 8 out of 18 benchmarks set had been achieved. “Not exactly a passing grade,” Colmes noted.

Lieberman reiterated that the surge is working. "Sectarian deaths are way down in Baghdad," he said. But Lieberman's upbeat assessment contradicts the recent testimony of Thomas Fingar, deputy director of national intelligence and chief of the National Intelligence Council. Fingar told Congress,

While the increase in U.S. troops is "having an effect, it has not yet had a sufficient effect on the violence, in my judgment, to move the country to a place that the serious obstacles to reconciliation can be overcome," Fingar said. "It will be difficult and time-consuming to bridge the political gulf when violence levels are reduced, and they have not yet been reduced significantly," he said, in what he called his "most optimistic projection."

Nobody pointed out that removing Saddam Hussein, Iran’s enemy, and installing the Iran-friendly Shi’ite government has already handed that country a victory. Nor was it mentioned that Al Qaeda in Iraq was listed 5th and last on CIA Director Michael Hayden’s list of sources of violence in Iraq. Nor was it mentioned (and I doubt it ever will be on FOX News) that, as the L.A. Times reports,

“Most of the foreign militants targeting U.S. troops and Iraqi civilians and security forces are from Saudi Arabia. About 45% of all foreign militants targeting U.S. troops and Iraqi civilians and security forces are from Saudi Arabia… Nearly half of the 135 foreigners in U.S. detention facilities in Iraq are Saudis,” according to a senior U.S. military officer.