Walters Denies Surge Success

"View" co-host Elisabeth Hasselbeck touted the success of the surge before "objective" journalist Barbara Walters dismissed it. On the April 8 edition of "The View," the panel discussed General Petraeus’ testimony before Congress on the situation in Iraq. Hasselbeck called the surge "one of the most effective strategies in the war" before Walters swiftly responded "no it has not." Walters then added because violence has seen an up tick in the past few weeks the surge has failed.

Hasselbeck then pulled some numbers noting the Iraqis "met 12 of the 18 benchmarks" and "90,000 of the Sunnis have decided to join U.S. forces." Walters responded by dismissing those figures adding "darling you can get all of the statistics you want, but you’ve had more violence than you’ve had in months."

The entire transcript is below.

ELISABETH HASSELBECK: I think the surge has probably been one of the most effective strategies in this war.

BARBARA WALTERS: No it has not.

HASSELBECK: Oh, I disagree I think it absolutely has-

WALTERS: I think a few weeks ago it was considered that. Now there has been more violence than there has been in many months. And you’ve had other military men saying that the, that the armed forces are so, there are so few and they’re so strained that we would not be prepared for other attacks. I think the surge- from what I read- I’m not an authority and none of us here are- the surge was but the violence has continued and gotten worse. And the, and the Iraqis are showing no ability to be able to take over.

HASSELBECK: Well, they’ve met 12 of the 18 benchmarks. 90,000 of the Sunnis have decided to join U.S. forces. They have-

WALTERS: Darling you can get all of the statistics that you want, but you’ve had more violence than you’ve had in months.

HASSELBECK: This surge will be studied for years to come in terms of the genius of it, how it turned this war around.

JOY BEHAR: I have a question. How long does this surge last? A surge, like when you get an electric surge, it’s very short. [laughter and applause] Why is this going on so long?

HASSELBECK: The surge was our initial- remember in 2006 when people like, I mean you had everyone from Senator Clinton calling for a quick withdraw. They said the only way we can have any sort of victory was to quickly get our troops out of there in 2006. And General Petraeus recommended, and you have Senator McCain who was right behind him-

WALTERS: But the question is how long is this surge going to be?

HASSELBECK: The surge was the initial push.

WALTERS: But how long is the surge going to be?

SHERRI SHEPHERD: She’s not General Petraeus Barbara!

HASSELBECK: The surge is-

[laughter]

SHEPHERD: I mean, you got to give her a break.

BEHAR: She’s on record saying it’s working. We want to know how long.

HASSELBECK: The surge has worked. The surge has worked. That initial push of troops into the area has absolutely worked. No one can deny that.

WALTERS: Yes you can if it’s not working now.

HASSELBECK: That, that’s up for debate. General Petraeus what’s actually happening there.

(h/t Greg for the YouTube video)