The O'Reilly Factor
A daily summary of segments aired on The O'Reilly Factor. A preview of the evening's rundown is posted before the show airs each weeknight.
Thursday, July 21, 2005
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The politics of terror
"It looks to us like this terror incident in London today was done by amateurs but nevertheless it is getting worldwide attention. It is becoming very clear that everybody on this planet is going to have to make a decision about terrorism and there are really only three options. You can take a hard line, which is my position. You can appease terrorism, which is Spain's position. Or you can refuse to confront the issue. Unfortunately millions of people are doing that. Here in the USA we have people who have made a huge deal out of Guantanamo Bay, Abu Ghraib, the run-up to the Iraq War, and other issues surrounding the terror threat. In my opinion ... some of us have lost sight of that threat because of the politics involved. With all due respect to the left-wing in this country, when Islamofascists are slaughtering civilians, I'm not sure the abuse at Abu Ghraib should be our main concern. All Americans should realize that mistakes will be made in fighting this global war on terror but we should also realize that if we don't aggressively fight it, Americans will die in the streets. There comes a time when you have to decide what is best for everybody, and there's no question that what is best for everybody is to defeat Islamofascism."

Fox News Video:

Today's London bombings
Guest: Terror expert Steve Emerson

Terrorism expert Steven Emerson suggested that today's bombings in London were connected to the bombings of July 7. "It's clear that at least they were connected to the same cell. And the people who carried them out today were additional recruits, who operated totally below the radar screen of the Brits, who really thought they had wrapped up the entire cell in the past five days." Emerson also rejected the idea that Iraq was the reason for the bombings. "There's no doubt that the invasion of Iraq has served as a rallying cry. But we have to take the hypothetical corollary, which is what would have happened had there not been an invasion of Iraq? We actually know. It was 9/11."

Press attacks Blair over terror
Guest: Jamie Dettmer, Cato Institute

Prime Minister Blair is obviously under a lot of pressure because of the terror attacks in London, and today the press hit him with the same old stuff. The Factor shot back. "It's absurd. I mean, Livingston, the mayor of London is absurd. The BBC is absurd. Do you know today we watched the BBC evening newscast? They spent like three minutes on the bombing in London. And that was it. I mean, what's going on? I don't understand." British journalist Jamie Dettmer said that the British public and press were actually committed to resisting terror. "So I think that what we're seeing is the old sense of solidarity that one saw, let's say in the 70's and 80's in the face of IRA bombings of London, even though there were doubts about British policy towards Northern Ireland then as well. And it's almost what you could call, romanticizing it--the Brit spirit."

The semantics of the BBC
Guest: Dr. Tobe Berkovitsz, Boston University

Two weeks ago the BBC was reluctant to use the word "terrorist" when covering the first London bombing. Today, the BBC website is calling the terrorists "attackers." Dr. Tobe Berkovitz, the assistant dean at Boston University's College of Communications, address the problem. "I think there's a real semantic problem there. And so I agree with you on that point that they should be calling these people terrorists. I don't have any problem with that. I think it's just BBC policy, a sensitivity that they feel towards perhaps the broader Muslim population in England." The Factor was incredulous. "A sensitivity? I mean, what, they don't want to offend the other terrorists, who may not have participated in the killing of civilians today?"

LA Times editor shake-up
Guest: Stephen Burgard, Northeastern University

The Tribune Company, which owns the LA Times, will not allow the new editor to oversee the paper's editorial pages. That is very unusual, and is sending some shockwaves through the liberal journalism community in the USA. Former LA Times editorial board member Stephen Burgard said the problem is related to the paper's budget cuts. "Well, this is a sort of side bar to the main story, which is that the newsroom has been unhappy with budget cuts ordered by Chicago. But it is significant that the editorial pages will now report to the local publisher, who will be a Tribune executive. This arrangement exists elsewhere. It's not all that unusual, but I think this is going to be an effort to exert a little more rigor over the page than has been taking place in recent months." The Factor argued that its liberal leanings had damaged the paper. "I really believe their ideology has hurt them in Los Angeles. I think a lot of people in L.A. have said we don't want this rammed down our throat every day."

Bernard Goldberg talks back
Guest: Author Bernard Goldberg

Bernard Goldberg returned to The Factor after having appeared on CNBC with Donnie Deutsch, where not only Deutsch, but four other guests, attacked Mr. Goldberg. The Factor advised Mr. Goldberg to guard against an ambush in the future. "But I want to caution you in the sense that you're not going to get a fair shake, Bernie. You're just not, because they don't want a guy like you, who was a liberal, who's now rethought that position and is looking at the landscape saying there's something wrong here. They're going to try to do everything they can to discredit you and you have to protect yourself against it."

London terror wrap-up
Guest: Fox News correspondent Todd Connor

The Factor went back to London where FOX News correspondent Todd Connor gave a recap of what happened there today. "People here are just angry that they can't get home more than anything and just frustrated that they were a little inconvenienced today. Some people today were frightened initially, scared. But once they found out these attacks were nothing like July 7, they kind of settled down and said, 'We're stronger than that. We can handle it. Bring it on.'"

Viewers sound off
Factor Words of the Day
Some viewers were pleased by The Factor's take on the Canadian media:

Jeanne and Will Kurz, British Columbia, Canada: "We are deeply ashamed of the CBC and its spineless stance against terrorism. Not all Canadians are left-wing nuts."

Benjamin Bach, Ontario, Canada: "Bill, thanks for shedding some light on our state-funded TV network. My country is rapidly spinning out of control."

Others were not:

Lois Blandford, Toronto, Canada: "Mr. O'Reilly, I was shocked that you were so aggressive against our CBC. The fact that they do not use the generic term 'terrorist' when describing a violent act is a good thing. I feel sorry that the American people are forced to listen to people like you."

Book Mentions
Check out the books mentioned during this show.
100 People Who Are Screwing up America (and Al Franken is #37)
by Bernard Goldberg