When does Fox News love a Syrian refugee? When he’s an Obama-bashing, Trump-praising Syrian refugee. And, conveniently, he’s already in this country or I suspect he might have quite a different view of Donald Trump.
Let me say that I do not begrudge Kassem Eid his animosity toward President Obama for not attacking Syria nor even his gratitude toward Donald Trump for tossing some missiles at Syria. Eid is a Syrian opposition activist and survivor of Syrian President Bashar al-Assad’s 2013 chemical attack. And I can only begin to imagine the horrors of life in that country the last several years.
But there’s simply no excuse for anyone who calls herself a news host not to at least question Eid’s admiration of Trump at the same time she prodded him to attack Obama.
For one thing, Trump warned the Russians he was about to strike and they probably tipped off the Syrians. For another, it’s not clear how much real damage was done to the Assad regime. Furthermore, even Fox News acknowledges Trump has no coherent Syria policy going forward.
Eid, himself, has blasted Americans who didn’t want to take Syrian refugees. From a November, 2015 Roll Call interview:
“These officials, whether they are congressman or candidates running for president, if they have these disgusting theories and disgusting ideas about the Syrian refugees, they shouldn’t be representing the U.S. government, they shouldn’t be representing the United States people, they shouldn’t be representing the values of this country,” Eid told CQ Roll Call at a coffee shop in Washington, DC, last week.
“They shouldn’t keep making people more disappointed. They shouldn’t keep helping ISIS and all the other radical extremist groups in recruiting,” Eid said of lawmakers who want to halt Syria refugees coming into the country. “Because these extremist groups, they feed and grow on people’s disappointment. They use that negative energy that these kinds of statements and these stupid acts that affect people, and they use it to recruit,” Eid said, twirling the black rosary beads he kept on the table in front of him. “Discrimination is a very powerful way to make somebody desperate, and especially an angry person who lost his family members,” he added.
Again, in no way do I stand in judgment of Eid. But there’s no excuse for Fox Business host Elizabeth MacDonald not to at least explore the fuller picture.
MacDonald's first question pumped for more praise of Trump: "You’ve said you’re grateful that President Trump took action against Syria. Why are you grateful?"
Eid answered by attacking Obama for breaking “a lot of people’s hearts in Syria.” Eid claimed that Obama’s inaction on Syria “fueled ISIS and the extremists [and] encouraged terrorists to do more.”
When MacDonald finally interrupted, it was to prod Eid for more criticism of Obama. Citing an editorial, she said, “You say you figured it out why Obama did not act in Syria. Why?”
“Because he was sold out with the Iranians. He wanted to do anything to make the Iran deal possible,” Eid accused. “Instead of holding the dictators accountable, you’re making deals with them.” Eid may be right. But Trump is sucking up to dictators. He has even praised Saddam Hussein.
No word about that from MacDonald! She wanted to know if other Syrians agree with Eid’s views of Obama.
Eid went on to plead with Trump to remove Assad. But, apparently, time was up.
“Kassem Eid, we are so grateful for you and for coming on the show," MacDonald said earnestly. "We’d love to have you on again. Please come back soon.”
Regardless of Trump, Eid has an important, rarely-heard story that I would have loved to have heard. But instead of providing viewers with information about Eid's friends, family and others still in Syria or resettled elsewhere, MacDonald only wanted to use him as political fodder.
Watch the propaganda below, from the April 10, 2017 Risk & Reward with Deirdre Bolton, from the Fox Business Network.
But he needs to quit tipping off the Russians. An old B52 might be easy to shoot down.