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Posts tagged "National Security"

Fox’s Kimberly Guilfoyle has no credentials in national security, terrorism or international policy and she never seems to have spent one minute in military service. But that’s no reason not to play an expert on how to handle ISIS on Fox News.

On yesterday’s The Five, co-host Greg Gutfeld – another Fox talking head without a single credential qualifying him to make pronouncements about such a serious subject – seemed to view ISIS as just another excuse to smear President Obama, talk tough and bang the drum for a new war. With other people doing all the fighting and dying, of course:

Obama should get his head out of his golf bag or get out of town… It’s time to dispense with political correctness and get over being nice. Nice equals death. …And if our president isn’t up to it, then find someone who is. Hell, maybe it’s better if he stays on the course – for good.

Then it was Guilfoyle’s turn. Surprise! She also saw it as an excuse to smear Obama and talk tough about a new war! One that she didn’t mention serving in. 

There should be no mercy involved because they (ISIS) have shown none. That’s the only language that they understand. …I really think there’s just really one right answer here. We can talk about the ways to get it done – air strikes, certainly – but it’s gonna take more than that. We’ve already got troops on the ground. We already need help from our U.K. and European allies and counterparts.

I mean, can I just make a special request on the magic lamp? Can we get, like, Netanyahu and, like, Putin in for 48 hours, head of the United States? I don’t know. I just want somebody to get in here and get it done right so that Americans don’t have to worry and wake up in the morning fearful of a group that’s murderous and horrific, like ISIS.

Nothing says “patriotic American” like demanding military action and wishing someone else were president!

Watch Fox’s latest ISIS “experts” below, via Media Matters.

Ellen at

h/t: Ben Dreyfuss at Mother Jones

The right-wing media’s smear campaign against the Obama administration over the 2012 attacks in Benghazi, Libya, appears to be paying dividends in the form of donations.  

Media Matters review of fundraising emails and websites found that conservatives have routinely invoked Benghazi to ask followers for money. The fundraising solicitations accuse the Obama administration of “lies,” “cover-ups,” a “dereliction of duty,” and crimes worse than Watergate.   

The fundraising is only likely to intensify with the recent creation of a House select committee, led by Rep. Trey Gowdy (R-SC), to investigate the attacks. The Republican leadership convened the committee despite numerous previous inquiries into Benghazi. The Department of Defense wrote in March that it had already participated in “approximately 50 congressional hearings, briefings, and interviews” about the 2012 attacks.

Gowdy said on MSNBC today that fellow Republicans should not fundraise off of the Benghazi attacks, stating: “Yes, and I will cite myself as an example. I have never sought to raise a single penny on the backs of four murdered Americans.”

Like their counterparts in the media, the main Republican Party campaign apparatuses are actively fundraising off of Benghazi. The Republican National Committee has a donation page asking Republicans to demand “the truth about Benghazi” by contributing money. The National Republican Senatorial Committee asks Republicans to “donate today” because of Benghazi. And the National Republican Congressional Committee has a fundraising page stating: “You’re now a Benghazi Watchdog. Let’s go after Obama & Hillary Clinton. Help us fight them now.” The page features an image of President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton with the text, “Benghazi Was A Coverup. Demand Answers.”

Here are five recent examples of conservative pundits raising money off their Benghazi witch hunt. 

Fox News Host Mike Huckabee


Huckabee sent a May 6 email to his Fox News-promoted list titled, “Benghazi, Benghazi, Benghazi.” Huckabee claimed that Clinton “has some explaining to do” and the Obama administration was responsible for “subsequent lies and cover-ups.”

He later suggested that Benghazi is worse than Watergate, writing: “We once had real newspapers and broadcast news outlets that cared about a government lying to the people. Now, they dismiss Benghazi as ‘no Watergate.’ And they’re right: in Watergate, the press didn’t look the other way and neither did Congress. And in Watergate, no one died.” At the conclusion of his email, Huckabee wrote: “Help support conservative candidates through Huck PAC.  Chip in $5 or more to Huck PAC!”

Fox News Contributor John Bolton


Bolton sent an April 16 fundraising email for his John Bolton PAC with the title, “Benghazi is a disgrace.” Bolton wrote that “Obama, Hillary, [Leon] Panetta - not one of them will take the fall because they know their actions, leaving Americans to die at the hands of terrorists, were a gross dereliction of duty … Our enemies know that under Obama, you can kill his personal representative and get away it scot-free.” Bolton later wrote: “I encourage you to make a generous donation to support John Bolton PAC’s efforts.”

Bolton also sent an April 30 fundraising email in which he wrote that Obama “did absolutely nothing to avenge the murder of our Ambassador Chris Stevens in Benghazi, Libya, at the hands of Al-Qaeda terrorists.” 

Fox News Contributor Allen West


West sent a January 21 email for his Allen West Guardian Fund PAC claiming there “is an ongoing cover-up to hide the truth” about Benghazi. West offered a solution by writing “we need to clean up Washington.” He explained readers could help do so by making “an immediate contribution of $25, $50, $100 or more right now to the Allen West Guardian Fund.”

West sent a March 14 email claiming “Obama and his party are defeatists. When Obama retreated from his warnings to Syria regarding their chemical weapons program and told lies to avoid taking military action for the terrorist attack in Benghazi, he sent a clear message to the world: ‘America is weak. We’ll just talk tough and back down. Do as you wish.’” West then asked for donations to his political action committee. 

Accuracy In Media


A May 2 email from AIM chairman Don Irvine claimed, “After a year and a half of Benghazi damage control enforced by the administration and their lapdogs in the press, the genie is suddenly out of the bottle.” It concluded: “To move ahead with this vital work to shine the light of truth on Benghazi, Accuracy in Media needs your support. We urge you to express your confidence in our efforts by sending a generous donation today.”

AIM also convened a “Citizens’ Commission on Benghazi” which included members such as Fox News contributors Allen West, and Thomas McInerney. A donation plea on the website states: “Accuracy in Media and the CCB are taking the lead in reporting the truth about Benghazi that even Republicans on the Hill won’t touch. We are doing the real work of interviewing witnesses, collecting documents, and finding out the facts—why it happened, how it happened and why it was covered up. In order to proceed with our investigation, we must have your help. Please donate to Accuracy in Media today to shine the light of truth on this issue and end the Benghazi cover-up.” 

American Center For Law And Justice / Jay Sekulow


The ACLJ, a conservative group headed by radio host and regular Fox News guest Jay Sekulow, asks for donations to “Demand Answers on Benghazi.” The group states: “The Obama Administration has not given the American people the truth about Benghazi. Congress is forming a select committee to get to the bottom of this foreign policy disaster and get answers. We’re working with Members of Congress to get the truth. Stand with us with your tax-deductible donation today.” 


h/t: Eric Hananoki at MMFA

Fixed Noise the Benghazi! This, Benghazi! That channel. 
From the 05.03.2014 edition of FNC’s Cashin’ In

Citizens Committee On Benghazi Releases Findings From Benghazi Review. On April 22, the Daily Mailreported on findings from the Citizen’s Committee on Benghazi, a self-selected group created by Accuracy in Media, that pushed a number of conspiracy theories regarding the attack in Benghazi, Libya. According to theDaily Mail, the report claims that the attack was a “failed kidnapping plot” of Ambassador Chris Stevens, that the U.S. had “switched sides in the war on terror,” and that President Obama had coordinate with the Muslim Brotherhood to blame the attacks on a YouTube video. [Daily Mail4/22/14]

Fox News Hypes Citizen’s Committee Findings As “Blistering New Report”

Fox News Hypes Committee Findings As “Blistering New Report.” On the April 23 edition of Fox News’Fox & Friends First, co-host Ainsley Earhardt hyped the committee’s “blistering new report” and repeated the claims that the attacks “could have been prevented,” and that “Ambassador Chris Stevens was supposed to be captured and traded for the Blind Sheik”:

EARHARDT: A blistering new report reveals the Benghazi terror attacks could have been prevented. The Citizen’s Committee on Benghazi claims the U.S. allowed $500 million in weapons to flow to Al Qaeda terrorists who opposed the Libyan dictator, Muammar Gadaffi, and their rise to power lead to the embassy attack two years ago that left four Americans dead. The commission concluding the attack was actually a failed kidnapping plot. The report says that Ambassador Chris Stevens was supposed to be captured and traded for the Blind Sheik, the mastermind of the 1993 world trade center bombing. [Fox News, Fox & Friends,4/23/14]

Meet The Citizen’s Committee Panelists: Birthers, Conspiracy Theorists, And Anti-Muslim Advocates


Capt. Larry Bailey, USN (Ret.): Obama’s Birth Certificate Is A Forgery, Real Father Is Frank Marshall Davis. Retired Capt. Larry Bailey is the founder of Special Operations Speaks, an anti-Obama group of Special Operations veterans. Bailey has admitted on numerous occasions that he is a birther, telling Foreign Policymagazine in 2012 “”I have to admit that I’m a Birther” … “If there were a jury of 12 good men and women and the evidence were placed before them, there would be absolutely no question Barack Obama was not born where he said he was and is not who he says he is.” Bailey has also touted the conspiracy theory that President Obama’s real father was actually the late community writer Frank Marshall Davis. [Foreign Policy8/17/12,Media Matters,  8/8/13; Accuracy in Media, accessed 4/23/14]

Gen. Paul Vallely (Ret.): FBI Is Covering Up Truth About Birth Certificate Out Of Fear Of A “Black Backlash.” Retired General Paul Vallely, who was a Fox News contributor from 2001-2007, has claimed that Obama’s real birth certificate “has never been found in Hawaii nor released from Hawaii hospital there,” and that it was a “forged document.” Vallely told fringe right-wing website WND that both versions of Obama’s birth certificate were forgeries and alleged that the FBI and Congress were covering up the truth about Obama’s place of birth out because they are “afraid of a black backlash from some of the urban areas.” [WND, 6/15/11Media Matters7/27/12; Accuracy in Media, accessed 4/23/14]

Gen. Thomas McInerney (Ret.) Claimed Obama Was Not A Natural Born Citizen. On September 1, 2010 Talking Points Memo reported that Thomas McInerney had “officially joined the legions of birthers,” citing McInerney’s support for an Army Lieutenant who refused to deploy to Afghanistan because he did not believe Obama was born in the United States. McInerney’s affidavit claims:

According to our Constitution, the Commander in Chief must now, in the face of serious— and widely held— concerns that he is ineligible, either voluntarily establish his eligibility by authorizing release of his birth records or this court must authorize their discovery.

McInerney has also worked as a military analyst for Fox News, where he pushed other conspiracy theories including the theory that WMDs were never discovered in Iraq because Saddam Hussein hid them other countries. [Talking Points Memo, 11/1/10; Accuracy in Media, accessed 4/23/14Media Matters11/1/10,3/22/13]

Anti-Muslim Activists

Col. Allen West: Islam Is Not A Religion, It’s “A Totalitarian Theocratic Political Ideology.” Retired Col. Allen West is a former U.S. Representative and also a Fox News contributor, and has a history of pushing an Islamophobic narrative. After West lost his re-election bid, MSNBC reported on some of West’s most outrageous claims including that “Islam is a totalitarian theocratic political ideology, it is not a religion. It has not been a religion since 622 AD, and we need to have individuals stand up and say that.” After the attack on a British soldier in 2013, West claimed that the violence was due to “appeasement” of “Islamists.” [MSNBC,11/20/12Media Matters, 5/17/135/23/13; Accuracy in Media, accessed 4/23/14]

Clare Lopez Is A Senior Fellow At Two Anti-Muslim Organizations. Clare Lopez is a prominent member of two anti-Muslim groups - the Clarion Project and the Center for Security Policy. The Center for Security Policy was funded by one of America’s most notorious Islamophobes, Frank Gaffney, who also sits on the board of the Clarion Project. The Clarion Project is funded by three of the seven top anti-Islam and anti-Muslim think tanks in the United States. Lopez has authored several articles for both organizations, and has made claims that Obama’s administration has been infiltrated by Islamist-supporters to institute Sharia law. In a 2011 interview, Lopez claimed “the bottom line really is that, unless ethnic Europeans begin to have an awful lot more babies, the forces of shariah Islam will inherit Eurabia by sheer dint of their numbers.” [Media Matters 2/20/14; Center for Security Policy, accessed 4/23/14; Clare Lopez, 12/2/09 via YouTube; Examiner.com3/11/11; Accuracy in Media, accessed 4/23/14]

Benghazi Conspiracy Theorists

Adm. James Lyons (Ret.) Claimed Benghazi Was A Cover-Up. Adm. James Lyons who regularly writes for the conservative outlet, The Washington Times, is known to push old Benghazi conspiracies and debunked assertions; Lyons has claimed that he has never seen “a cover-up as intense as the Benghazi cover-up” and compared the State Department’s Accountability Review Board that investigated the attack to “having the mafia investigate a crime scene.” Lyons has also made an unfounded claim that Libyan militia guards protecting the Benghazi compound “were not allowed to put ammunition into their weapons,” and suggested that David Patreus’ affair was a cover-up for Benghazi. [Media Matters7/30/13, Accuracy in Media, accessed 4/23/14]

Wayne Simmons Has Suggested That White House Gave “Stand Down” Order. Former CIA officer Wayne Simmons, who is a frequent guest on Fox News, has pushed the debunked claim that the White House gave a “stand down” order during the Benghazi attack and that the people killed in Benghazi “were sold out.” Simmons has also advocated profiling students from Muslim countries. [Media Matters7/30/13, 5/2/13; Accuracy in Media, accessed 4/23/14]

Citizens’ Committee Is Organized By Fringe Conservative Group, AIM

Accuracy in Media (AIM) Has A History Of Promoting Conspiracy Theories. The Citizens’ Committee on Benghazi is organized and supported by Roger Aronoff’s fringe conservative group Accuracy in Media (AIM). AIM is responsible for promoting many conspiracy theories over the years, and is also well-known for extreme anti-gay views and hate speech. [Media Matters2/7/12]

h/t: Michelle Leung at MMFA

h/t: Hayes Brown at Think Progress World

Right on, Nancy Pelosi! 

h/t: Caitlin MacNeal at TPM LiveWire

h/t: Charlie Savage at The New York Times


Laura Ingraham Uses Crimea Invasion To Call For U.S. Border Control

Conservative radio host Laura Ingraham on Sunday used the Russian invasion of Crimea to say that the United States should be focusing on stopping undocumented immigrants from coming across its border.

During a Fox News panel discussion on Crimea that included former deputy Pentagon chief Paul Wolfowitz, Ingraham began by blasting the Iraq war, which he helped to orchestrate.

"Upwards or two trillion dollars in Iraq, right? We don’t have a lot to show for it," she said. "We are stumbling still in Afghanistan. The American people — we can talk about, we can do this and we can do that [to stop Russia]. And I understand that, I really do."

"But we have a country right now where people look around and say, why do we only care about borders and sovereignty when they’re other countries’ borders and sovereignty?" the frequent Fox News guest host added. "Why is it that we’re obsessed about that, but in our country, we have a middle class completely flat-lining, we have economic opportunity dwindling?"

Ingraham noted that she had supported the “military adventurism” in Iraq, but people now wanted to know, “Where’s the bang for the buck?”

"You can’t do this in the rearview mirror," Wolfowitz insisted.

"You got to learn from the past, Paul," Ingraham interrupted.

"One of the things to learn from the past, including the past of the 1930s, is if you don’t deter these sort of moves early, when you can do it without military force, you end up in wars," Wolfowitz replied. "And that’s what we’re trying to avoid here."

She’s wrong as usual. 

See Also: BREAKING: President Obama decides NOT to use military action against Russia - JPC

h/t: Carrie Dann at 

Fox News “Medical A-Team” member Dr. Keith Ablow attributed Russian president Valdimir Putin’s decision to invade Crimea in part “to the psychology of Barack Obama.” 

In a March 11 column, Ablow claimed that Putin’s motivations should not be dismissed as those of a “simple thug,” but rather that “Putin’s psychology is being directly fueled by that of President Barack Obama.” Ablow criticized Obama as unwilling to assert both personal and nationalistic power, arguing that “Barack Obama apparently believes he was placed on this earth to be the most powerful person he can be, in order to restrain America in the expression of its power.”

Ablow went on to imply that Obama’s domestic policy was the catalyst for Putin’s decision to invade Ukraine:

How then could Vladimir Putin fail to notice the remarkable presence on the world stage of an American counterpart (Barack Obama) who is as interested as he is in disempowering the United States? How could he fail to act on the remarkable symmetry of such a moment in history? To not test the possibility that God intends him to be the instrument of a new world order, based on Russia’s manifest destiny, would be contrary to every fiber in his being.

To go further, I do not believe that Vladimir Putin would miss the fact that Barack Obama has imperiled the notion of individual autonomy (by seeking to disarm Americans, by seeking to make Americans dependent on unemployment checks and food stamps and by making it officially impossible to choose how to spend your own money, via the Affordable Care Act). Since giving each individual the right to power is not the goal of this American President, why would Putin believe that taking power from others would be opposed vigorously by this President’s Administration?

Ablow concluded that “If Crimea becomes part of Russia or all of Ukraine does,” Putin and Obama’s psychology will share the blame equally.

h/t: Sophia Tesfaye at MMFA

h/t: Kyle Mantyla at RWW

People are looking at Putin as one who wrestles bears and drills for oil. They look at our president as one who wears mom jeans and equivocates and bloviates.

Sarah Palin fawns over Putin on Fox News’ Hannity. And she’s not the only conservative media figure doing so.   (via mediamattersforamerica)

From the 03.03.2014 edition of FNC’s Hannity:


If there’s one thing I am really, really sick of, it’s greedy, amoral, inhuman politicians who worship and fetishize the military to the detriment of everyone else. And if I had to pick the worst example of that kind of politician, Dick Cheney would top my list:

Former vice president Dick Cheney went on Fox’s “Hannity” show last night to discuss the recent plans to reduce the Army to levels not seen since 1940 — through a reduction in personnel and removing a class of warplanes from the field — in an effort to cut budgets after a decade of war, calling the decision “over the top.” He told host Sean Hannity that President Obama would “much rather spend the money on food stamps than he would on a strong military or support for our troops.”

The military cuts proposed by Secretary of Defense Chuck Hagel on Monday were in part a reaction to the Congress’ latest appropriations bill. The Pentagon is authorized to spend $1 trillion over the next two years — far more than the sequestration cuts allowed but $75 billion less than the Obama administration requested. The Pentagon’s plan would call for a reduction in troops from their wartime peak of 570,000 to between 440,000 and 450,000 troops.

The plan also proposes cutting pay and benefits for military employees. Hagel said Monday, “No realistic effort to find further significant savings can avoid dealing with military compensation.”

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