Shepard Smith and Chris Wallace criticized Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu with the kind of language usually reserved for Democrats on Fox News.
Neither of the two Fox News hosts minced words on Friday. Smith read a quote from Martin Indyk, former ambassador to Israel:
Netanyahu is using the Republican Congress for a photo-op for his election campaign and the Republicans are using Bibi for their campaign against Obama... Unfortunately, the United States relationship will take the hit. It would be far wise for us to stay out of their politics and for them to stay out of ours.
“I think he’s 100% right,” Wallace quickly agreed. He called the whole thing “wicked,” saying, “I have to say I’m shocked.”
Smith wondered if Netanyahu wouldn’t decide to back out. “Because members of his own Mossad have come out and said this is a horrible idea and so have members of his own political party. Of course, his political opponents are screaming up and down, the newspapers over there are going wild over this. It just seems like, like they think we don’t pay any attention and we’re just a bunch of complete morons, the United States citizens, like we wouldn’t pick up on what’s happening here,” Smith added.
Wallace said Indyk “has it right.” Wallace called Netanyahu “an extremely savvy and successful politician” who “wouldn’t come here unless he thought it were to his political advantage.” But Wallace thought this move was “a very risky political strategy” for the Israeli Prime Minister. He continued, “For Netanyahu to do something that is going to be seen as such a deliberate and really pretty egregious snub of President Obama, when Obama is going to be in power for the next year and three-quarters, it seems to me a very risky political strategy. ...For Netanyahu to come here and side with Boehner against Obama on Iran seems to me to be very dicey politics."
Smith even took a jab at Netanyahu over the settlements:
You know, the last president, George Bush, used to say, “You must stop the expansion of the settlements.” So what does Israel do? They move on with expanding the settlements. This president says, “You gotta stop expanding the settlements,” and they just keep expanding the settlements. And then leaving some in the White House to whisper this is because Netanyahu doesn’t really want a two-state solution; if he did, he would be working toward one. It’s all very confusing, and highly complicated.
Considering the non-stop love-fest Fox engages in with both Netanyahu and Republicans, this is extraordinary. Believe me, hosts don’t just pop off at the mouth on Fox. So it makes me wonder if Fox isn’t trying to send Israel its own message without having to contradict its more blatant GOP/Israel cheerleaders on board.
Watch it below, from the January 23 Shepard Smith Reporting, via Huffington Post.
(H/T Alex and Daily Kos)
We’ll see if these two can hold onto their As, and if anyone else can even get a C.