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Tuesday, August 1, 2006
Parchments
Sec. Condoleezza Rice
Guest: Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice

The Secretary of State explained why the U.S. was reluctant to push for an immediate ceasefire in the current Middle East crisis: "We do think that the violence should end. We think it should end, of course, on a basis that is not going to create a situation in which we're right back here again several months from now or several years from now. But the Middle East is littered with cease-fires that didn't work. We need to have an end to the violence. But we also have to be certain that we are pointing in the right direction politically." The Factor asked about the Israeli response and the public image of the U.S.: "You know that most of the world, at least the world press, including in our own country, is now saying that Israel is overly aggressive and the United States is wrong for backing Israel. [And] the United States' image is taking a beating here. And what do you have to say about that?" Rice explained the Israeli and U.S. positions: "A terrorist group, Hezbollah, decided to launch an attack from Lebanese territory without the knowledge of the Lebanese government against Israel. Israel then exercised its right to defend itself. And of course, the United States has to do what it thinks is right and President Bush is always going to do what he thinks is right."

The Factor asked Secretary of State Condoleezza Rice about the likelihood of American ground troops in southern Lebanon as part of a peacekeeping force: "What about a peacekeeping force? Is that going to be in southern Lebanon? Do you support that? U.S. troops going to be in there?" Rice responded: "Well, I don't think there is any anticipation, expectation of U.S. combat forces on the ground, for a lot of reasons. But I do think that we are looking at an international force. It will likely be a force that would go in sometime after a cease-fire. I think they can't go in under fire. Nobody expects that. But it's going to be an important element of making sure that the Lebanese can deploy their forces to the south."

Fox News Video: Condoleezza Rice
The motives of Hezbollah
Guest: Author Walid Shoebat

For insight into the motives of Hezbollah the Factor turned to Walid Shoebat, a former Palestinian Liberation Organization member and author of "Why I Left Jihad". Shoebat described Hezbollah's intentions: "Israel will have to pull back from the Lebanese territory unless Israel takes over all of Lebanon and weeds out Hezbollah Hezbollah will declare victory as Israel pulls back unless they destroy Hezbollah. If they declare the victory, we create the confidence that they were looking for." But the eventual goal for extremist groups, according to Shoebat, is not to expel Israel from just Lebanon, but to destroy it entirely and in its place, establish an Islamic Caliphate that unites the whole Arab world. The Factor said, "I understand. But Israel's never going to give up the territory. It's not going to move out of Jerusalem. So I don't understand what the ultimate - what they think they're ultimately going to accomplish. But the West doesn't seem to want to fight these people. They don't seem to have the will to fight."
Fidel Castro steps down due to illness
Guest: Ninoska Perez, Cuban Liberty Council

The Factor described two problems for America in its own backyard: "Cuban dictator Fidel Castro is ill and has appointed his brother, Raul, to run things for a while. Meantime, anti-American Venezuelan leader Hugo Chavez has purchased $3 billion worth of military hardware from Russia. And already, Chavez owns the Citgo Oil Company currently making billions selling gas to Americans." Miami radio host Ninoska Perez cautioned against thinking Raul was any better than his brother: "For the first time there is a possibility that Castro might be dead. And on the other hand, you have scholars here selling the possibility that Raul could perhaps bring about some type of opening through the regime. Certainly, I do not believe that." Regarding Chavez the Factor asked, "What should we do about Citgo? Most of the gas stations are owned by Americans, yet, the ultimate owner of Citgo is Chavez, who's bought $3 billion worth of arms from Russia. Who's going to win big? Venezuela." Perez said, "This is why the conscience of people is important, because why should you buy your gas from a company whose owner is receiving an award from the president of Iran?"
American press & the Middle East
Guests: Fox News analyst Jane Hall & author Bernie Goldberg

The Factor discussed how the press is covering the Middle East with Bernie Goldberg and Jane Hall. "I think television loves tragedy, especially when children are involved. Misery, mayhem, death, destruction. In the perverse world of broadcasting, all of this makes for good TV. The problem with the pictures coming out of Qana is that there's such good TV, it is so gripping, that they distract from the real story. And the real story is that Hezbollah routinely, routinely uses civilians as human shields." Journalism professor Jane Hall talked about Fox's coverage: "I think FOX News has largely had a pro-Israel stance, as has this administration. But I think Israel's friends are beginning to ask in editorials and commentary, how could they not have known this? How could they have such terrible intelligence? How could they not have known how strong Hezbollah was? How could they assume they could make take them out in a week? That's the kind of commentary that, interestingly enough, I think conservative commentators are beginning to ask." The Factor reiterated who was on the side of right: "In my mind we are the good guys. Now I know there are people who disagree with that, and I think that they're terribly misguided. We are the noble people, United States and Israel. We don't want war. We're not trying to kill anyone. We're just defending ourselves."
Fame and shattered reputations
Guest: Fox News entertainment reporter Lisa Bernhard

The Factor discussed how the Internet could harm public figures with Fox Entertainment correspondent Lisa Bernard. Bernard said: "Celebrities get a lot of perks, but it is a dangerous time to be a celebrity. There are some sites out there that make it their business to go get actual court documents. There are an awful lot of blog sites out there, and people often don't differentiate the source. They read something somewhere and think it's true." The Factor was equally worried: "Everyone in the world knows within hours all of the accusations. So, no matter what happened, you're dead. It's reached the point where it's insane and it's dangerous. If you take pictures of little children, somebody's kids, look what happened to John Lennon. That's going to happen."
Viewers sound off
Factor Words of the Day
Mail on Mel Gibson:

Ed Arndt, Mattoon, IL: "There were plenty of Mel Gibson movies on TV last weekend but I could not bring myself to watch one."

Kellie Connor, Radcliff, KY: "So Mel got drunk and spouted a bunch of hateful things? How many people have done that before?"

Don Reder, West Reading, PA: "Bill, your defense of Mel Gibson's apology was biased. It is common knowledge that you have a financial interest in Gibson's films."

Isabel Trujol, Brooklyn, NY: "We cannot take Gibson's remarks at face value because he was intoxicated at the time and alcoholism is a disease."

Emanuel Baker, Los Angeles, CA: "I am a Jew who is not ready to accept Gibson's apology."

And on the Middle East:

Neil Roberts, New York, NY: "Bill, given your unquestioning loyalty to Israel, you should start airing the Factor in Hebrew."

Gil Wiebe, Manitoba, Canada: "Bill, we appreciate the Factor and know many who also like your style. The CBC doesn't speak for us!"

Mike Moore, Dromara, Northern Ireland: "The United States does whatever it likes without the slightest trace of guilt. Perhaps that's why you have almost no friends around the world."
Book Mentions
Check out the books mentioned during this show.
Why I Left Jihad: The Root of Terrorism and the Return of Radical Islam
by Walid Shoebat

Read more...
100 People Who Are Screwing up America (and Al Franken is #37)
by Bernard Goldberg

Read more...
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