Bill O’Reilly claims he “didn’t have anything to do with” Fox’s now infamously erroneous reporting on so-called Muslim “no-go zones” in France. But unfortunately for O’Reilly, the record shows otherwise.
Last night, in a discussion with Bernard Goldberg that was mostly about Beyoncé, O’Reilly said at the end:
O’REILLY: All right, we got a minute. The mayor of Paris, Anne Hidalgo, said she’s going to sue Fox News for reporting on so-called no-go zones in Paris. They’re dominated by Muslims and police hesitate to go in there—at least that has been the reportage in some places. I didn’t have anything to do with this. But I will point out that the mayor is a socialist. That Fox News isn’t even seen in France because they block it.
So this is just an attention-getter, another playing-to-the-left, that’s what this is. Suit’s going nowhere. It’s ridiculous. ….We didn’t even insult them.
I noted differing legal opinions about France's potential suit in a previous post. But there's no doubt that O'Reilly is flat-out wrong about his non-involvement in Fox's no-go zone "reportage." The Washington Post’s Erik Wemple wrote about a January 9 discussion between O'Reilly and Fox reporter Amy Kellogg (my emphasis):
(O’REILLY:) “Now, tell me about the no-go zones. Ten percent of the French population is now Muslim and they cluster — a lot of them do — in neighborhoods and French police are afraid to go in those neighborhoods? That’s the no-go zone?”
As Kellogg answered the question, the screen of “The O’Reilly Factor” showed the no-go zone map that so antagonized Parisians of all stripes:
A back-and-forth ensued about these zones, and O’Reilly concluded with this ruling: “It’s troubling when a nation has various neighborhoods that police are afraid to go into. Very troubling.”
Furthermore, on the same night, O’Reilly said this on The O’Reilly Factor:
France brought a lot of this terrorism on itself. We just talked about the no-go zones that they allow. They allow - 10 percent of the population is Muslim. They are all in there, they’re radicalized, they don’t assimilate.
(video below via Media Matters)
But wait, there are more falsehoods from last night.
Goldberg suggested that Fox had already exonerated itself via its multiple apologies about “no-go zones.” But O’Reilly “corrected” him:
O’REILLY: It was a Birmingham, England thing. It was different. It was a different issue there. And it was an Emerson play. He doesn’t work for Fox News. It was a commentator who they put on.
Um, no, it was not just “an Emerson play.” One of the apologies was about Emerson. But a prior apology, from Julie Banderas, specifically retracted the reporting on no-go zones. She said, “To be clear, there is no formal designation of these zones in either country (France or England) and no credible information to support the assertion there are specific areas in these countries that exclude individuals based solely on the religion.” Furthermore, yet another apology, from Anna Kooiman, acknowledged that the no-go zone map was erroneous, too.
Finally, O’Reilly’s claim that France has blocked Fox News (with the suggestion that it’s because of the country’s radical politics) is wrong, too.
From Wemple again:
According to a network spokeswoman, Fox News reaches 13,680 homes across France, a country with about 13 million pay TV subscribers. The minimal pickup owes to basic considerations, like the fact that Fox News’s international product broadcasts in English and runs on a U.S.-based schedule, meaning that a French subscriber would be watching morning show “Fox & Friends” with her déjeuner. Fox News is in 103 countries, and it’s not “blocked” in France.
Will O’Reilly correct the record tonight? We’ll be watching.
Watch the videos below, from last night’s The O’Reilly Factor and the January 9, 2015 Factor.
I don’t believe for one moment that BOR doesn’t recall the part he played in this “no-go zone” fiasco. But, instead of offering up the contrite mea culpa that the situation deserved, BOR decided to fib. He’s no doubt hoping that his viewers don’t remember his remarks on the subject and will simply accept his bogus denial. BOR has a lack of respect for the truth and for the people who tune into The Factor. Thank goodness for media folks like Eric Wemple at WaPo who aren’t afraid to call out BOR when he’s been caught spinning in his own no spin zone.
By the way, Bill, I guess you’d know all about “suit’s going nowhere.” Of course, in your case, you paid an undisclosed sum to make sure it went “nowhere.” I guess in right-wing world, lawsuits are only a good thing when it’s a right-winger who feels they’ve been wronged (such as the Christian “victims” we see paraded on FoxNoise). But when it’s a
Anne Hidalgo was born Ana Hidalgo in Spain (like Manuel Valls, the prime minister), and came to France with her parents when she was two years old. Her parents have now returned to Spain, and her older sister, Maria, is an entrepreneur in Los Angeles, California.
Many French are immigrants, or sons and daughters of immigrants (40 % of every child born between 2006 and 2008 have at least one parent or grandparent who is an immigrant). And, even today, with a lot of people believing most of the immigration comes from muslim countries, the reality is that a little more than half of it is from other european countries.
Oh, and pointing out that the mayor is a socialist? To ALMOST quote O’Reilly, “So this is just an attention-getter, another playing-to-the-RIGHT, that’s what this is.”
And BTW, I find it amusing and interesting that the mayor of Paris has a Hispanic surname.