|All content taken from The O'Reilly Factor on Fox News Channel. Each weeknight by 6 PM EST a preview of that evening's show will be posted and then updated with additional information the following weekday by noon EST.
|Guest: Fox News correspondent Steve Harrigan|
"Seven men, all apparently Black Muslims, have been arrested in Miami and charged with waging war against the United States, among other things. The FBI says these guys were looking to attack the Sears Tower in Chicago and the FBI building in Miami, and were negotiating with people they thought were Al Qaeda to get the resources to carry out the attacks. There isn't much else to this story - a bunch of low-level thugs who hate America trying to do damage. On a more important front, the New York Times, Los Angeles Times, and the Wall Street Journal all printed articles outlining a counter-terrorism program that tracks money transfers to suspected bad guys. The Bush administration asked some of the newspapers not to print the story, but the papers printed the information anyway. Right now we have a press that is working against counter-terrorism measures, and that puts all of us in jeopardy. The people who run the New York Times and the other left wing media truly believe the Bush administration is a danger to civil liberties, and that in general the President is harming this nation. With that mindset, the anti-Bush media is using all its power to damage the administration any way it can. Once again, now is the time for the Bush administration to step up the fight in Iraq. The brutal murders of two US soldiers this week and the killing of Zarqawi has changed some public opinion. We hope the military will take advantage of that momentum swing."
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Fox News correspondent Steve Harrigan, who has followed the Miami terror plot story since it broke, joined The Factor from Florida. "These people had the will," Harrigan reported, "and they were looking for the way. They wanted to kill Americans and they were looking for contact with al Qaeda or anyone else who could give them the weapons and the money to do it. The leader said 'we want to kill as many of the devils as possible.'" The Factor questioned whether the seven men actually had the ability to pull off a major attack. "It looks to me that this was the 'gang that couldn't terrorize straight.' It was a bunch of low-level thugs hanging out in a warehouse who thought they would hit the big time crime scene."
|Guest: Fox News correspondent Orlando Salinas|
The sister of one Miami suspect said this: "My brother is not in a terrorist gang ... he's not a Muslim, he's a Catholic ... he's in a religious group that's trying to help the community." Fox News correspondent Orlando Salinas provided more information about the terror bust and the reaction in Miami. "We spoke with people who said they saw these guys around, who said they had 'given their lives to Allah' and seemed to be brainwashed. Some of them had jobs in construction and had minor arrest records. According to the family, these men were looking for God, and this ringleader preacher showed up and got them interested."
|Guest: Dr. James Carafano, Heritage Foundation|
Of the seven would-be terrorists in Miami, five were American-born citizens. James Carafano of the conservative Heritage Foundation warned that homegrown terrorists may actually pose more danger than foreigners. "Domestic terrorism has been our greatest threat, and it's usually been these disparate little groups of wannabees that sometimes get very lucky. The group in Miami probably has a lot in common with the group that was recently broken up in Canada - people who get an ideology and get motivated. These guys in Miami sound like they watched too much '24' and thought it was a neat idea to be a terrorist. But we have to pick them all up, and the FBI is doing what it should be doing."
|Guest: Former FBI investigator Bill Daly|
Media outlets such as the New York Times have repeatedly divulged government secrets in the war against terror, most recently the program that monitors global money transfers. Former FBI investigator Bill Daly explained how the program works. "Right after 9-11 the President ordered the Treasury Department to track down and stop the assets flowing across the borders funding terrorists. We're talking about major transactions between banks around the world, and they've used this successfully to track down terrorists." Daly denounced the papers that decided to publish the classified information. "This very valuable tool is on the front page of the New York Times. Americans should be upset because the media are outing these very important programs that are protecting us all." The Factor expressed outrage at the leaks and the decision to publish. "When I read this story this morning in my house, I went 'why are they doing this?' I am a guy who really wants an aggressive watchdog press. But the administration asked the papers not to run this story, and now the whole program is blown."
|Guests: Author Jed Babbin & Fox News analyst Jane Hall|
Are mainstream media organizations, eager to publish information that could damage the Bush administration, actually undermining the war on terror. Author Jed Babbin essentially accused the New York Times of treason. "The Times has chosen sides in this war," Babbin alleged, "and they are not on our side. There's not a word in there that says this is an illegal program, and the New York Times is breaking the law here. Publisher Arthur Sulzberger and editor Bill Keller ought to be frog-marched out of the New York Times building and either arrested for publishing classified information or compelled to divulge the sources." But Fox News analyst Jane Hall laid out a rationale for publishing the story. "There needs to be a watchdog function because this administration is doing a lot of things that are a departure. There hasn't been congressional oversight of this program, it hasn't been approved, and the Times would say there is a compelling public interest in this story."
|Guest: Fox News chief judicial analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano|
Finally, Fox News analyst Judge Andrew Napolitano weighed in on the media's decision to reveal a classified government program. Judge Napolitano defended the newspapers on First Amendment grounds. "I don't have any problem with the New York Times publishing this. I wish they didn't, but I applaud their right to do so. I don't think it undermines the war on terror. You could argue that we are freer because we know what the government is doing." The Factor reiterated that the media are putting average Americans in jeopardy. "They're making my life more dangerous, my family's life more dangerous, and they should be held accountable in the court of public opinion."
|Many of you wrote about Notre Dame professor Don Wycliff, who denounced The Factor in an editorial, and Clarence Page, who came to Wycliff's defense. Some excerpts:|
C.J. Patton, Arlington, TX: "Mr. O'Reilly, you were absolutely justified in showing righteous indignation towards Clarence Page. He was spouting half-truths and fabrications and you were right to call him on it."
Dorothy Garrett, Palos Hills, IL: "Hey, Bill, why have Mr. Page on when you just cut him off? We know your viewpoint, let us hear what the guest has to say."
Peggy Ryan, Albuquerque, NM: "Wycliff, the Notre Dame guy, doesn't have the courage of his own convictions and cancels at the last minute. Pathetic."
Other viewers wrote about the Atlanta Journal-Constitution cartoon that equated US interrogators with Al Qaeda torturers.
Tom Tracy, Suwanee, GA: "I am cancelling my subscription to the Atlanta Journal-Constitution."
Mac McPherson, Pfuegerville, TX: "All of the Cox papers are far left. I cancelled my subscription to the Austin Statesman a long time ago."
Pete Ventura, Centerville, OH: " Cox also owns the Dayton Daily News which attacks the U.S. military all the time."