Ever reach that point when you realize you're arguing with fools? Eric Bolling got there yesterday on Geraldo Rivera's radio show.
Bolling, co-host of the afternoon talk show "The Five" on Fox News, tussled with Rivera and another guest, former New York governor Eliot Spitzer, over the Obama administration's response to the terrorist attack on an American diplomatic compound in Benghazi last September. (Audio after the jump).
Continuing a feud they'd begun on Twitter, Rivera accused Bolling of persisting in a "false narrative" while diminishing more important stories, which he described as "the coverup and the lack of security" (h/t for audio, Brian Maloney at mrctv.org) --
RIVERA: You're making the president look like a damn murderer, Eric, and it's so irresponsible, and you are feeding these survivors of these victims with this false narrative so they hate the president and they accuse the president of being a murderer based on false reporting. It's outrageous!
BOLLING: No one said murderer, Geraldo, now don't put words in my mouth yet again. Here's exactly what I said, here are the facts (crosstalk), hold on, here are the facts. At X time, two Americans were killed, Ambassador Stevens and Sean Smith. Seven hours later, two more Americans were killed. In between that time, there was a verbal stand-down order given to all available assets in the area. That's the fact.
RIVERA: That's not true! That's not true!
BOLLING: You can call them a murderer. I will call that negligence.
RIVERA: You made that up just now. You made that up.
BOLLING: I made that up?! Have you watched the testimony?! Have you listened? Have you read ...
RIVERA: The only stand-down order was the four guys couldn't get on the plane, but Gov. Spitzer, go ahead.
SPITZER: I just wanna say, Eric, repetition doesn't give any credibility to your argument. You can say it louder ...
BOLLING: You know what, you guys? I'm not doing this, because these are the facts. You guys can look 'em up and I'll talk to you about it next week. (hangs up)
SPITZER: Eric ... did he hang up on us?
SPITZER: All right, well, that's too bad.
The "only" stand-down order, according to Rivera, was that given to "four guys" -- Special Forces soldiers on the tarmac in Tripoli, preparing to board a plane bound for Benghazi. I doubt this brings much comfort to the survivors of Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods, who were killed in the second attack at Benghazi seven hours after the initial assault.
Providing further clarity for Rivera if he's inclined to seek it, when not in the mood to offer apologia for Obama, was the guarded and barely articulate testimony provided by then-defense secretary Leon Panetta before the Senate Armed Services Committee in February --
There was this initial attack on the facility at Benghazi. Within an hour or so, that ended and very frankly we thought that was the end of what had occurred there. And we had no intelligence that a second attack would take place at the annex two miles away. ... The issue of whether or not you suddenly deploy, uh, you know, a platoon or a team into an area, still has to, you still have to determine whether or not the situation that's there requires the deployment of that force there. And frankly, when we were told that the attack was over, you know, we immediately, you know, although we had the forces in place, we would have responded if something, you know, had indicated more. We had no intelligence to indicate that that was the case.
Golly gee, who could imagine that terrorists might attack more than one target? Where's the fairness in that?! "Very frankly," one can't help but wonder if this dearth of imagination on the part of Panetta, et al., and their unwillingness to stir the president from his slumber -- even though "we had the forces in place" -- cost Americans their lives.