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Sean Hannity Behaves Hatefully Toward Those Who Question Bush’s Unnecessary, Un-Constitutional War In Iraq

John Lofton

July 27  2004

In his novel “Sybil,” Benjamin Disraeli describes one of his characters, a “Mr. Kremlin,” as being “distinguished for ignorance, for he had only one idea, and that was wrong.” So it is with Sean Hannity. His one, ignorant, idea that is wrong is that our unnecessary, un-Constitutional war against Iraq was, is and always will be, a great idea --- regardless of any facts and/or opinions to the contrary.

Night after night on Fox TV’s “Hannity & Colmes” program, Hannity bullies, brow-beats, interrupts, yells at, points a finger at, viciously attacks and un-Christianly imputes the basest motives imaginable to anyone who deviates one jot or tittle from the Bush Administration’s talking-points in defense of the expensive, bloody mess the Iraq war has become.

A case in point involves a recent guest on “Hannity & Colmes,” an unnamed current, 22-year CIA analyst known only as “Mike” who, under the pen name of “Anonymous,” has written a very important book titled “Imperial Hubris: Why The West Is Losing The War On Terrorism.”

Unlike Hannity, “Mike” is knowledgeable and actually knows what he’s talking about. One of his most compelling points is something that anyone with a brain ought to know is true: al-Qaeda is committing murderous acts of terrorism against us, and is supported in the Islamic world, not because of what the United States stands for but because of what we do. Elaborating on this point in a recent interview on National Public Radio, “Mike” said:

“I think the United States is al-Qaeda’s only indispensable ally. As long as we pursue the policies that bin Laden has focused on, we will be an admirable, in fact, a perfect foil for his activities.” Among the policies he says are “very important” for the Muslim world is “our unqualified support for Israel.”

“Mike” also has a pithy way of cutting to the heart of an issue. In this same NPR interview, regarding our war in Afghanistan, he says yes, we won a battle by driving the Taliban from the cities. But, we have yet to win the war because by ousting the Taliban from the cities, we drove them into the rural areas where they were originally based. Thus, the Taliban, with their guns, have gone back home to their villages where they are now invisible and still fighting.

“Mike” says that even if there are 15 or 20 elections in Afghanistan they would be “basically meaningless” because in that Islamic country tribal loyalties, clan loyalties and family loyalties are paramount. He is asked: “Isn’t it possible that a country can change?” He replies: Yes, “but the idea that you’re going to put 800 years of Anglo-American history on a CD-ROM and give it to [President] Karzai to install in Afghanistan in a year is really quite madness.”

Amen! All excellent, compelling points.

OK. Now, “Mike” appears on “Hannity & Colmes.”

Hannity begins by asking why “Mike” doesn’t get out of the CIA since in so many ways he’s critical of “our policies”? Answer: “If you get out, sir, you can’t effect anything in terms of change.” No reply from Hannity.

Hannity then asks about “Mike’s” book --- sort of. But, he doesn’t ask about anything said in the book. No, instead, Hannity wonders if the purpose of “Mike’s” book is really to change things or “is there a financial benefit for you?” Yikes! So, is Hannity an anti-capitalist Communist, a Marxist? Is it bad to get a “financial benefit”? Does Hannity profit from what he writes? Does he do his radio and TV show for no pay?

“Mike” replies coolly, patiently and with good manners: “Of course, sir, why would I write a book if there wasn’t a financial benefit. It’s common sense.”

Hannity pounces: “All right. So it’s not just about change, it’s about making money and it’s about, you know, other matters. So, I think that’s important to point out.” To which “Mike” replies regarding the money issue: “I think that’s a silly question.” Hannity says no, there’s nothing silly about his “motivation” as “you sit there in the dark.” “Mike” says Hannity shouldn’t bring this up since he’s sitting in the dark because the CIA won’t let him appear in public.

Hannity: “Listen, I can bring up whatever I want. I think our audience would like to know your motivation.” The guest, of course, has never said money was his “motivation” for writing his book.

Hannity, bloodied badly thus far but unbowed, presses on, ignorantly. He attacks what he calls one of the “fundamental points” of “Mike’s” book, that is (in Hannity’s words) extremist Muslims “hate us and attack us for what we think rather than what we do.” He says this view is “fundamentally flawed.” But, Hannity has things exactly backwards! What “Mike” says in his book, and has said in numerous interviews, is that the Muslims hating and attacking us do so NOT because of what the United States stands for but because of what we do!

Hannity, a knee-jerk Republican, pro-Iraq-war, Bush cheerleader, says --- with a straight face --- that it seems that what “Mike” believes has “a political side to it”! He asks: “A re you politically motivated?” Nice try. “Mike” says, calmly: “I don’t think so, sir, since I’ve never voted for anybody but a Republican in my life.”

Hannity (snidely): “According to you.”

“Mike”: “Oh, are you able to check the voting?”

Hannity: “No, I can’t….Just because you say it doesn’t make it true.”

“Mike”: “We can either talk about the book or we can talk about abusing me. That’s your choice.” Indeed, and Hannity has already, with a vengeance, chosen to abuse his guest and, for the most part, ignore his book.

Then, after repeatedly and relentlessly attacking “Mike” personally, Hannity asks: “Why are you so defensive?” “Mike” says he thought they were going to discuss his book. Hannity: “We are”!

When “Mike” corrects what Hannity said earlier, noting that his argument is that “they hate us for what we do, not what we are,” Hannity asks: “So, you blame America for the attacks, then is what you basically, the inference is?” Before “Mike” can reply to this absurd characterization, Alan Colmes jumps in.

Replying to a Colmes question about how we should understand the culture of those Muslims attacking us, “Mike” says, wisely: “We certainly need to recognize the power of religion and the motivational power of religion. I think that’s a start.” In an interview in “The American Conservative” magazine he has said: “I am at a loss to understand how this far along into the bin Laden problem we can still be saying that this war has nothing to do with religion. It has everything to do with religion in terms of the motivation of bin Laden, his followers, sympathizers and Muslims [who] fight us.” In other words, President Bush is dangerously wrong when he has told us, and continues to tell us, ad nauseam, that our war against Islamic terrorists is NOT about “religion.”

At the end of this program, Hannity, referring to “Mike,” says, as if actions do not have consequences: “There you have it. So it’s what we do that makes them hate us. Oh, please, Mr. Terrorist, will you be nice to us? Maybe that’s his philosophy” --- which is a lie because this is not the philosophy of “Mike.”

Three months earlier, on another one of their shows, when a guest, Rep. Chaka Fattah (D-Pa.), has the temerity to attempt to disagree with Hannity about the Iraq war and say why he disagrees, Hannnity asks over and over again: “Is it a good thing Saddam is out of power, yes or no?” Repeatedly, when Fattah tries to talk, Hannity interrupts, asking the same question four more times.

On previous programs, Hannity has accused some Bush critics of engaging in “hate speech,” “extreme hate speech,” and being “bitterly angry” with the President. But, when it comes to critics of Mr. Bush’s unnecessary Iraq war, Sean Hannity has demonstrated that he can be at least as “hateful” toward and “bitterly angry” with those he rails against who are anti-Bush.

A footnote: On another recent “Hannity & Colmes” program, Hannity once again denounced all the “anger and resentment” against President Bush. To which his guest, Jack Kemp, replied: “Well, I have never in all my years in this town seen such vitriol aimed at just one person.” This is the same Jack Kemp who has referred to those Republicans who are against “free trade” as “protectionist xenophobes."

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John Lofton, Communcations Director for Constitution Party Presidential candidate Michael Anthony Peroutka, calls himself a "recovering Republican" and he says he is never happier that he is no longer a Republican than when he sees Sean Hannity on TV. His email is: JLof@aol.com




 

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