Yesterday’s Special Report "All-Star Panel" focused on the violence in Afghanistan in the wake of the burning of Korans at a U.S. military base. Although many conservative foreign policy and military experts have agreed that the Obama administration did the right thing in apologizing, Fox has used the incident to attack Obama – and particularly to suggest that he’s suspiciously sympathetic to Muslims. Host Bret Baier set the scene for the panel to follow suit with his introduction: "Four U.S. service members have been killed in Afghanistan since the protests began there, big protests over the weekend, continuing today with a car bomb at the Afghan airport. What about the situation and the policy involved?"
Baier then asked Charles Krauthammer for his thoughts. Krauthammer said, "I think what's happened over the last few days is definitive evidence of how ineffective the apology (to the Afghan government) has been. If I thought the apology would save one American life, I’d swallow hard and say it's all right for the President go ahead and do it. But he did and it didn't sooth the savage mob. In fact, it intensified the violence. We had the shooting in cold blood of two American advisors in the interior ministry happening the day after that apology. We had the grenade thrown at American soldiers in Kunduz in northern Afghanistan the next day. And then we had this morning, as you mentioned, the suicide attack on the American base outside of Jalalabad. So clearly it didn't have any effect whatsoever."
Baier said to conservative panelist Stephen Hayes, "Democrats are pointing to the apology by President Bush back in 2008 to Prime Minister Maliki from Iraq when a Koran was desecrated there, and they're saying what's different now? That's what they're pointing to here, as far as the apology goes."
Hayes said, "I would categorize what President Bush did as basically acknowledging a mistake. It would have been fine if that's all that had been done in this instance. But it wasn't. We had repeated apologies and extended apologies in a way that I think made the United States look like we're almost supplicants, like we were seeking their favor. That's not healthy."
Powers knocked down Krauthammer’s argument pretty effectively. She said, "I just want to go back to Charles talking about the fact that the violence has intensified since Obama made his apology. There's no connection between the violence intensifying and the apology. I don't think that we have seen more violence because of the apology. And I think the only reason to not make an apology would be if it was going to lead to violence, and I don't think there's an argument that it did. I still believe that it's the right thing to apologize. It’s the right thing to set the standard. Conservatives are, I think, blowing this out of proportion and saying that it’s ‘all of these apologies’ when in reality we had a letter from the President, which was a diplomatic letter to Hamid Karzai. We had General Allen say a couple of remarks about it, and somebody here apologized to the Muslim community. I don't think that's overkill… We have our standards and our standards are we don't burn Korans and when we do we apologize."
Baier never pointed out that many conservative experts agree with her.
Ah, ah, ah. Now you’re forgetting one very important fact: That ONLY applies when THEIR boy is in charge. (Yes, I’m aware of the potentially racially-charged term I used. The right-wingers would NEVER use such a phrase to refer to one of their own but would claim “no disrespect intended” if they “slipped up” and referred to Pres Obama that way.)