Thursday, February 09, 2017
counterpunch | Obama’s administration was, to be frank, a veritable killing machine, one comprising almost daily drone strikes, kill lists, and the wholesale destruction of entire countries, as in the case of Libya. In his final year in office the US dropped 27,000 bombs, up from the number dropped in 2015. Yet we are meant to regard the 44th president and recipient of the Nobel Peace Prize as the modern incarnation of Dr Martin Luther King, a president who worked tirelessly for peace and justice.
Reminding Mr O’Reilly and his ilk of a few basic facts when it comes to the difference between Moscow and Washington’s actions around the world in recent years, there is a significant difference between a foreign policy driven by restoring stability and security to entire regions, in the case of Russia vis-à-vis the Middle East, and a foreign policy that has only succeeded in sowing instability and terrorism across those regions, in the case of the United States.
Bill O’Reilly’s discomfort at being corrected by the country’s President on the egregious record of his own country when it comes to body count, was redolent to that of a vampire suddenly exposed to daylight. The Fox News anchor was left floundering around in his chair, rattled by Trump’s simple yet withering words of truth in response to the kind of statement that has no place being made by any self-respecting journalist.
But then the Bill O’Reilly’s of our world are not journalists they are propagandists, engaged in spreading disinformation in the cause of the previously mentioned myths that both sustain and nourish a perverse worldview. America, the ‘land of the free’, is a force for good in the world people such as him choose to believe. When we kill people we only do so reluctantly and in service to the greater good of freedom and liberty. Thus our bombs are good bombs, a fact that should be of comfort to the families and loved ones of those we obliterate.
What needs to be explored in light of Mr O’Reilly’s interview with President Trump is not so much his journalistic credentials but the education system of which he is a product. It reveals a man who when confronted with the choice between embracing truth or ideology has chosen ideology.
While nobody should be under any illusions when it comes to Donald Trump as the reincarnation of Hugo Chavez, he has revealed a propensity for dropping the odd ‘truth bomb’ here and there, much to chagrin of conservative and liberal commentators alike. And such truth bombs are the killers that Bill O’Reilly truly fears – killing the smug complacency and hypocrisy without which life loses all meaning.