Fox News, Factiva transcripts misattribute O'Reilly remark criticizing judge in Abu Ghraib photo case to Wesley Clark
Transcripts on both the Fox News website and Factiva.com misattribute a remark made by Fox News host Bill O'Reilly to former Democratic presidential candidate and Fox News contributor Gen. Wesley Clark. Because of the error, the websites' transcripts of the October 3 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor read as though O'Reilly persuaded Clark that U.S. district judge Alvin K. Hellerstein was wrong to order the release of photos depicting prisoner abuse at the Abu Ghraib prison in Iraq. In fact, Clark said on the show that he thought the photos should be released.
On the October 3 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor, Clark stated, "I want to see the pictures." He remarked, "I think we need a complete investigation to see where this [scandal] goes all the way up to the top level of the chain of command." O'Reilly disagreed, arguing that the release of the pictures would inflame anti-U.S. sentiments in Iraq, potentially endangering U.S. troops. He stated, "I don't want to put our guys in the field in any more danger than they already are," to which Clark replied, "I certainly don't want to put them in danger either." In closing, O'Reilly responded, "OK. Hellerstein is wrong."
Both the Fox News and Factiva transcripts mistakenly attribute the words, "Hellerstein is wrong" to Clark. A transcript of the October 3 edition of The O'Reilly Factor is not yet available on Lexis-Nexis.
From the October 3 edition of Fox News' The O'Reilly Factor:
O'REILLY: You want those picture pictures out? You want these pictures?
CLARK: I want our Army to live up to American values.
O'REILLY: So everybody does. You want the pictures out?
CLARK: In America, we don't torture people. So I think we need a complete investigation to see where this goes all the way up to the top level of the chain of command and up to those White House memos.
O'REILLY: Yes or no, General? Do you agree with Hellerstein? Do you agree?
CLARK: I would like to see the pictures, Bill.
O'REILLY: You want to see the pictures?
CLARK: I want to see the pictures.
O'REILLY: Even if it would put Americans in danger, you want to see them?
CLARK: I'll tell you what's put Americans in danger. It's not having the Geneva Convention enforced --
O'REILLY: All right. That's theory, General. We've got guys over there now. That's theory; we've got guys over there. Just rethink it. I disagree with you on that. I appreciate you coming on.
CLARK: Well, I want to hear you come back on my ground. I want to see what we can do to really clean this up. We can't win this war on terror by torturing people.
O'REILLY: I agree with that, but I don't want to put our guys in the field in any more danger than they already are.
CLARK: I certainly don't want to put them in danger either.
O'REILLY: OK. Hellerstein is wrong.