Terror firma

Apr 26, 2007 8:22am

Harshly critical comments about Democrats and national security made by former New York Mayor Rudy Giuliani on Tuesday have prompted some, um, passionate responses.

“If any Republican is elected president —- and I think obviously I would be the best at this —- we will remain on offense and will anticipate what they (terrorists) will do and try to stop them before they do it,” Giuliani said in New Hampshire.

“But the question is how long will it take and how many casualties will we have? If we are on defense, we will have more losses and it will go on longer. I listen a little to the Democrats and if one of them gets elected, we are going on defense. We will wave the white flag on Iraq. We will cut back on the Patriot Act, electronic surveillance, interrogation and we will be back to our pre-Sept. 11 attitude of defense.”

Concluded the former Mayor of New York: “The Democrats do not understand the full nature and scope of the terrorist war against us.”

These remarks prompted a great story by The Politico’s Roger Simon (READ IT HERE) — with a completely misleading headline. The headline, which was picked up and hyped by Matt Drudge: "Giuliani warns of ‘new 9/11′ if Dems win."

Giuliani did no such thing. He certainly said that Republicans would make the nation safer than Democrats — and you are free to consider than incendiary, as many Democrats have. But he didn’t use the term "new 9/11," or even speculate that there would be another 9/11. Whoever wrote that headline needs to be reprimanded. Why was ‘new 9/11′ in apostrophes and not quotes? Because, I suspect, he or she knew it wasn’t a quote. (Why not put it in ampersands? Or here’s one — "Giuliani warms of @new 9/11@ if Dems win.")

Very misleading.

Either way, the remarks were controversial enough — drawing swift rebukes from Democratic candidates, such as Sen. Barack Obama, D-Illinois, who said Hizzoner had brought "the politics of fear to a new low."

(The Washington Post’s Dan Balz has a nice summary of the Democrats’ responses HERE)…

Last night on MSNBC, Keith Olbermann said the following about Giuliani:

"How dare you, sir? ‘How many casualties will we have?’ This is the language of bin Laden."

Olbermann said Giuliani’s comments constituted "terrorism itself, dressed up as counter-terrorism."

"Claim a difference between the parties on the voters’ chances of survival, and you do Osama bin Laden’s work for him. And we, Democrats and Republicans alike, and every variation in between, we Americans are sick to death of you and the other terror-mongers trying to frighten us into submission, into the surrender of our rights and our reason, into this betrayal of that for which this country has always stood."

So Olbermann is calling Giuliani a terrorist? — jpt

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