Bill O’Reilly vs. Phil Donahue

Transcript from the O’Reilly Factor, FoxNews

O’REILLY: In the past Miss [Cindy] Sheehan has criticized Israel, saying it is occupying Palestine, has called Iraqi insurgents “freedom fighters,” has accused Americans of killing people ever since we stepped on this continent, has threatened Hillary Clinton with the loss her job unless she calls for a pullout of US troops from Iraq and has called the US action against Afghanistan a failure. Quite a resume and with us now is Phil Donahue, who supports Miss Sheehan’s “dissent.” So, I’m assuming you don’t – you don’t support all her positions that I just chronicled.

DONAHUE: Let’s understand what’s happening here. Once again we have a woman who got to be just a little too famous for the people who support this war, a minority of the American population, by the way, and so the effort to marginalize this woman is underway and you’re helping out.

O’REILLY: I’m the leader of the pack!

DONAHUE: You’re suggesting …

O’REILLY: I’m the leader of the pack!

DONAHUE: First of all, Cindy Sheehan is one tough mother and nothing you say or anyone else is gonna slow her down.

O’REILLY: That’s fine. She has a right to …

DONAHUE: You can’t hurt her. She’s already taken the biggest punch in the nose that a woman can take.


DONAHUE: She lost a son.


DONAHUE: She’s lost a child.

O’REILLY: But look – I’m not puttin’ words in her mouth …

DONAHUE: And by the way, she is going to be at the center of one of the largest rallies since the Vietnam War. Proud, patriotic Americans who will show up in Washington this week for one of the most massive, largest demonstrations – protest demonstrations …

O’REILLY: OK. And we’ll cover it.

DONAHUE: … right outside the President’s window.

O’REILLY: And we’ll cover it.

DONAHUE: And FOX is in the business of saying that this woman is somehow saying un-American things – hyperbole.

O’REILLY (getting angry): No. No. No. No.

DONAHUE: Listen to what she’s saying.

O’REILLY (checking his notes): Nobody said she said anything un-American. We say that her positions are radical. And they are radical!

DONAHUE: Let me tell you what’s radical. (getting a little angry himself) What’s radical is to send more Americans to die in this war, which is a monumental blunder by a President …

O’REILLY (under his breath): Alright.

DONAHUE: … who swaggered us into it with – by the way – the at least tacit approval of the Democratic Party.

O’REILLY (shifts in his chair, upset): You know what’s radical …

DONAHUE: There’s a lot of sin to go around here!

O’REILLY (angry, wags finger at Donahue): What’s radical for this –

DONAHUE (won’t let O’Reilly finish sentence): Do you want to send more people to this war?

O’REILY: Hey listen …

DONAHUE: Is that your postiion?

O’REILLY: If we cut and run outta there, like you wanna do, we would be putting every American in a thousand times more jeopardy than they’re in now.

DONAHUE (forcefully): We’re going to cut and run anyway, Bill.

O’REILLY: Well, that’s your opinion. I don’t think we are.

DONAHUE: It’s not my opinion. American military leaders have said we’re gonna draw down beginning next year. The reason they’ve said that …

O’REILLY(angry now): There’s a difference between drawin’ down and cuttin’ and runnin’!

DONAHUE: Alright….

O’REILLY (angry, jabs finger at Donahue): You’re a cut and run guy and I don’t want my family in danger because of you …

DONAHUE: You wanna stay the course, don’t ya’?


DONAHUE: You don’t …

O’REILLY (getting angrier): Here’s what I want to do. I want to give the Iraqis a chance to train their army so they can defeat these people who are tryin’ to turn it into a terror state.

DONAHUE (calmly): Bill

O’REILLY: That’s what I want to do! Go!

DONAHUE: Bill. This – Iraq was not a terrorist state.

O’REILLY (exasperated): Oh, no!

DONAHUE: I hope I don’t patronize you for saying …

O’REILLY (dismissive hand gesture) : Saddam was a swell guy!!

DONAUME: Saddam …

O’REILLY (loudly, sarcastically): He was just a great guy!!

DONAHUE (louder): Saddam – Saddam was a bastard, but he was our bastard!!

O’REILLY: He wasn’t anybody’s …

DONAHUE: Donald Rumsfeld shook his hand in the 80s.

O’REILLY: Alright. Well that’s great.

DONAHUE: You saw the pictures! (reasonable tone of voice) Now listen – listen. You wouldn’t send your children to this war, Bill.

O’REILLY (very angry, pointing): My nephew just enlisted in the Army. You don’t know what the hell you’re talkin’ about!!!

DONAHUE: Very good. Very good. Congratulations! You should be proud ..

O’REILLY (starts to lose it, shouting, pointing finger, hand shaking): And he’s a patriot, so don’t denigrate his service or I’ll boot you right off the set!!!

DONAHUE: I’m not … I’m not …

O’REILLY (very, very loud): That boy made a decision to serve his country!!! Do not denigrate him or you’re outta here!!!

DONAHUE (calmly): I’m not Jeremy Glick, Billy.

O’REILLY: That’s right!!

DONAHUE: You can’t intimidate me!!

O’REILLY: You’re a little bit more intelligent that he is!!

DONAHUE: I’m not somebody you can come and just spew all your …

O’REILLY: Don’t tell me I wouldn’t send my kids.

DONAHUE: Loud doesn’t mean right!

O’REILLY: My nephew just enlisted. You don’t know what you’re talkin’ about!!

DONAHUE: Your nephew is not your kid. You are like …

O’REILLY: He’s my blood!

DONAHUE: You are part of a loud group of people who wanna prove they’re tough …

O’REILLY (shifts angrily in his chair, under his breath): Aw fer …

DONAHUE: … and send other people’s kids to war to make the case.

O’REILLY (very loud): You have no clue …

DONAHUE: This ..

O’REILLY: … about how to fight a war on terror or how to defend your country. You are clueless! So is Miss Sheehan and for Miss Sheehan to say that the insurgents have a right to kill Americans and you’re shakin’ her hand! You oughta just walk away.

DONHUE (quieter): How many more young men and women are you gonna send to have their arms and legs blown off …

O’REILY: Hey, this is a war on terror!

DONAHUE: … so that you can be tough (points his finger at O’Reilly) and point at people in a kind of cowardly way..

O’REILLY (disgusted, under his breath): Oh, yeah.

DONHUE: Take people like Jeremy Glick who comes on to – in memory of his parents …

O’REILLY: Oh bull.

DONAHUE: … and you go off on him.

O’REILLY: Jeremy Glick accu …

DONAHUE: … like a big bully.


DOAHUE: Billy, you hafta be – you hafta feel sorry …

O’REILLY: Mr. Donahue, with all due respect …

DONAHUE: Have you apologized to him for that?

O’REILLY: Baloney!

DONAHUE: Do you know …

O’REILLY: Jeremy Glick came on this program …

DONAHUE: Do you know what I’m talking about?

O’REILLY: … and accused the President of the United States …

DONAHUE (sarcastically): Oh, and you had to ..

O’REILLY: … of orchestrating 9/11. That’s what he did. Right after 9/11!! Do you know what the pain that brought the families who lost people in 9/11?

DONAHUE: This war …

O’REILLY: You buy into left-wing propaganda …

DONAHUE: This war ..

O’REILLY: … and you’re a mouthpiece for it. (shifts in seat, clenched mouth) Go ahead.

DONAHUE: This war is not fair to the American troops. This war is unconstitutional. This war turned its back on the people who framed the most fabulous document in the history of civilization. I speak of the United States Constitution.

O’REILLY: Alright. Why …

DONAHUE: This … By the way …

O’REILLY: Why isn’t the Democratic party speaking that way?

DONAHUE: I’m sorry that it isn’t. I am. But let’s understand something …

O’REILLY: Are we all …

DONAHUE: Excuse me.

O’REILLY: Are well so misguided …

DONAHUE: Excuse me. Twenty-one Democrats in the Senate voted against this war as well as Jeffords, an Independent, and- may the Lord shine His blessings down upon Lincoln Chaffee …

O’REILLY: Alright. I’m gonna say something and I’m gonna …

DONAHUE (louder, refuses to be stopped): I’m almost finished, Billy!!

O’REILLY: I’m gonna give ya’ the last word.

DONAHUE: I’m almost finished!

O’REILLY: Alright.

DONAHUE: Lincoln Chaffee, the only Republican in the Senate to vote against this war. We should be building statues to all these people. October 2002 …

O’REILLY: Alright;

DONAHUE: … they stood up to as President and they knew that, first of all, only Congress can declare war. Why is that unimportant to you, Billy?

O’REILLY: Listen. It’s not – I’m not …

DONAHUE: Become the patriot that your loud voice proclaims you to be …

O’REILLY: The loud voice …

DONAHUE: … and stand behind the Constitution and insist that we never go to war again without the approval and the consent of the United States Congress.

O’REILLY: Alright . That’s why we have the Congress. If they want to take action, they can take action. Now I’m gonna say somethin’ then I’ll give you the last word. The Iraq War is not something I embrace.

DONAHUE makes surprised sound.

O’REILLY: It absolutely could be a tactical error.

DONAHUE: Well you should …

O’REILLY (louder): Just listen.

DONAHUE: It’s hard to know this.

O’REILLY (louder): Listen ta’ me ..

DONAHUE: It’s hard to know this.

O’REILLY: … and I’ll give you the last word. Not something they embrace. Could be a tactical error and we have not waged it the way I had hoped we would wage it.

DONAHUE: But, what?

O’REILLY: But ,,,

DONAHUE: You want to send more kids …

O’REILLY: The war on terror …

DONAHUE: … to die.

O’REILLY: We’re in a war on terror. Our cause is noble.

DONAHUE: It has nothing to do with the war on terror.

O’REILLY (louder again): Yes, it does. And if you don’t understand geopolitics, if you don’t understand Iraq would be a terrorist state if we pulled outta there…

DONAHUE (loudly): It’s a mistake.

O’REILLY: … then you don’t know anything. Go ahead.

DONAHUE: It was poorly planned …

O’REILLY: Go ahead.

DONAHUE: … and poorly executed but Bill O’Reilly wants to send more kids to fight and die. We’ve already had two thou – almost thousand – (gestures for O’Reilly to hold off) – just let me have the last word. In the last year two things have doubled. The number of dead American troops in Iraq has doubled and you know what else doubled, Billy? The price of Halliburton stock.

O’REILLY (upset): Alright.

DONAHUE: From $33 to $66. That doesn’t shame you? That doesn’t make you wonder …

O’REILLY: I’m not upset by Halliburton stock.

DONAHUE: … whether this is an enterprise that is worth the support of the American people. We need you at this rally on Saturday, Billy..

O’REILLY: OK. I’m not gonna be at your rally.

DONAHUE: We need you out there in front of it to protest.

O’REILLY: I’m not gonna be at your rally.

DONAHUE: There is no democracy without dissent.

O’REILLY: I’m not gonna protest.

DONHUE: You should be proud of people who stand up and dissent.

O’REILLY: I am. I respect your …

DONAHUE: A lot of fine men died to give me that freedom.

O’REILLY: You got. You got it. I respect your dissent. I think you’re way off in your analysis of the war on terror.

DONAHUE: You want to send more people to die? Is that your position?

O’REILLY: I wanna win the war in Iraq.

DONABHUE: Win. What does “win” mean?

O’REILLY: Means …

DONAHUE: Tell me what “win” means?

O’REILLY: Means those people have a chance at democracy.

DOPNAHUE: How long’s that gonna take.

O’REILLY: I gotta go. I gotta go.

DONAHUE: How long’s that gonna take?

O’REILLY: Those people deserve a chance at freedom.








We published an article entitled “A Saudiless Arabia” by Wayne Madsen dated October 22, 2002 (the “Article”), on the website of the Institute for the Advancement of Journalistic Clarity, CounterPunch, (the “Website”).

Although it was not our intention, counsel for Mohammed Hussein Al Amoudi has advised us the Article suggests, or could be read as suggesting, that Mr Al Amoudi has funded, supported, or is in some way associated with, the terrorist activities of Osama bin Laden and the Al Qaeda terrorist network.

We do not have any evidence connecting Mr Al Amoudi with terrorism.

As a result of an exchange of communications with Mr Al Amoudi’s lawyers, we have removed the Article from the Website.

We are pleased to clarify the position.

August 17, 2005