Fox News’s Geraldo Rivera beats chest over Benghazi

September 20, 2013

Benghazi, Geraldo, “Fox & Friends”: A failsafe combination.

In a famous “Fox & Friends” moment from last November, Rivera clashed with fellow Fox Newser Eric Bolling, who claimed that the U.S. government sent “no help” to the embattled U.S. personnel in Benghazi, Libya, on the night of Sept. 11, 2012.

Thanks to more congressional oversight on Benghazi this week, the issue resurfaced, and there was Rivera, along with Laura Ingraham and others on the “Fox & Friends” set. Co-host Brian Kilmeade suggested that people who bring up questions about the competency of the military response are “ridiculed,” setting off Rivera:

The reason we are ridiculed…and it happened right on this couch, I saw it with my own eyes: We were saying with great certainty that the United States military could have intervened to save those lives once the attack started. That was not true. It was not true. Look at what happened with Syria. The reason we didn’t strike Syria…immediately after the discovery of the poison gas is that the United States military is not a SWAT team. They’re not a fire department. They’re not standing ready to act…

After getting challenged a bit on all of that, Rivera scurried to his CV: “As the only person in this building who has actually been in combat in Benghazi, Libya, and with these militia, I speak with some authority, and I’m telling you we could not have stopped the attack and to say that we could have is one of the reasons the parents are so upset, because bad information helped convince those parents that America did not do everything…”

The back-and-forth intensified to the point that co-host Steve Doocy called an end to the couch-borne hostilities, noting the powerful points of Rivera and Ingraham: “This makes it fair and balanced.” Solid point there: Consistent with his sculpted torso, Rivera is feisty on Benghazi and assertive enough to fight back the hordes of Fox News staffers who disagree with him.

Erik Wemple writes the Erik Wemple blog, where he reports and opines on media organizations of all sorts.
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Erik Wemple | September 20, 2013