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Friday, June 18, 2004

Bill O'Reilly Sets Record Straight: Media Misreporting

I haven't watched O'Reilly since he apologized to the public, thereby renouncing his claim that there were WMD in Iraq, but he may be finding his way back into my good graces with this Memo being reported here. Some excerpts:
Once again we are mislead by some in the press.


The New York Times wrote: "Panel Finds No Qaeda-Iraq tie."

The Washington Post put forth: "Al Qaeda-Hussein Link Is Dismissed."

The Los Angeles Times opined: "No Signs of Iraq-Al Qaeda Ties Found."

And even the conservative Wall Street Journal trumpeted: "No Iraq-al Qaeda Link."

But if you read below the headlines you see the Commission said something a bit different: That there was no a collaborative relationship between Saddam and Al Qaeda regarding Sept. 11. That's true, but there were certainly links and ties between Saddam and Al Qaeda and that's provable.

The smoking gun is Abu Musab al-Zarqawi (search), an Al Qaeda leader who found his way to Baghdad after being severely wounded fighting against American forces in Afghanistan.

Zarqawi arrived in Iraq in May of 2002 and had surgery in an Iraqi hospital, run by -- are you ready -- Uday Hussein. I believe that might be a tie, but there's more.


Zarqawi wound up back in Iraq after the assassination of Foley and met up with the Ansar al-Islam group, which operated in Northern Iraq and is affiliated with Al Qaeda.

In January 2003, several Ansar terrorists were arrested in Britain and charged with planning to put Ricin in the military food supply. Some of those terrorists fingered Zarqawi in the plot.

Right now, Zarqawi is believed to be in Fallujah working with some of Saddam's former generals in planning terror attacks. Just last week he took credit for killing 13 people in a bombing.


Faced with the misleading headlines ... President Bush said this Thursday:

“The reason that I keep insisting that there’s was a relationship between Iraq and Saddam and Al Qaeda, because there was a relationship between Iraq and Al Qaeda. This administration never said that the 9/11 attacks were orchestrated between Saddam and Al Qaeda.”

... the press used the Commission's report -- which is accurate -- to suggest Bush mislead the public about Saddam and Al Qaeda.
Good job, O'Reilly, but there are far more connections than Zarqawi... he is certainly a smoking gun, but there is far more evidence than that, next time have another segment run shorter so you can give a bit more evidence in the talking points...

Holy cow... I was just getting ready to write a post about John Waffles Kerry wanting to raise the minimum wage to $7 an hour (which would hurt small businesses and inevitably lead to more inflation) and in the AP article I read this:
The Sept. 11 commission's found this week that Saddam Hussein did not have ties to al-Qaida, disputing a central justification Bush used for invading Iraq and toppling the former Iraqi regime.
I am confused... what does this BS have to do with Kerry Proposing to raise the minimum wage?

So first off we have that this blurb was totally unrelated to the story and was thrown in after the real story was complete. Second, the 9/11 commission found there was no credible link between Saddam and Al Qaeda in regards to the Sept 11th attacks, not that there were no ties between Iraq and Al Qaeda at all. Third, Bush did not use as a central justification for invading Iraq a link between Iraq and the 9/11 attacks... we went into Iraq because Saddam openly supported terrorism and if he were to provide WMDs to Al Qaeda, who has been trying to obtain WMDs, then 9/11 would have been a small prelude of things to come. This sort of sloppy reporting out to be dealt with by AP... but instead they will probably offer this reporter an award.

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