Ed Schultz Contradicted By Own Guests: Republicans Not Just Fear Mongering

Ed Schultz, never one to be left behind in radical left wing rhetoric, followed suit with the rest of MSNBC in condemning an intervention in Iraq on the June 16 edition of The Ed Show. Within the first 10 minutes, he had already blamed Republicans for using “dirty scare tactics,” claimed that they were calling for “troops on the ground,” and asked viewers to text in their answers to the utterly ridiculous poll, “are you prepared to send your kid to Iraq?”

Speaking of fear mongering. [See video below. Click here for MP3 audio]

It seems that the former liberal radio host forgot to remind his guests to adhere to his rants, as both Rep. Jim McDermott (D-Wash.) and General Wesley Clark admitted that the Republican’s “2003 mushroom cloud talk” had some truth to it during their interviews.

When Schultz asked whether Lindsey Graham’s statement that Iraq will become “the staging ground for the next 9/11" was “fear mongering or is that the truth,” Rep. McDermott replied, “That's fear mongering” then immediately backtracked, saying “it has -- it may have some pieces of truth in it that we've created an area of turmoil in which these kinds of things are going to spring.”

Later in the show, General Wesley Clark told Schultz that “this is one of these points in history where if the United States is able to take modest military action, it could have a significant benefit.” The former NATO commander continued to explain why intervention is necessary, and how the right combination of military intelligence, special forces, and diplomacy with the Iraqi government could “have a decisive impact militarily.”

Perhaps Schultz was so busy coming up with clever polls that slander Republicans that he forgot to look at the facts.    

See transcript below:

MSNBC
The Ed Show
June 16, 2014
5:03 p.m.
16 seconds

ED SCHULTZ: Here we go again, give me a break. This is nothing more than 2003 mushroom cloud talk coming from Senator Graham. These dirty scare tactics from Republicans are nothing new. It's the same strategy they used to get us in Iraq back in 2003.

5:07 p.m. Eastern
28 seconds

SCHULTZ: No, see the neocons, they want international intervention. They want troops on the ground. We need to learn from history. This country needs to make a calculated and academic decision that will bring us better results this time around. I suppose that diplomacy is totally out of the question at this point for the conservatives and Maliki has not been an honest broker. Maliki has not been inclusive. And I don't hear republicans saying that.

5:08 p.m. Eastern
10 seconds

SCHULTZ: That’s the key, get your cell phones out, I want to know what you think. Tonight's question, are you prepared to send your kid to Iraq? Text A for yes, B for no to 67622.

5:11 p.m. Eastern
1 minute and 3 seconds

SCHULTZ: Congressman, Lindsey Graham is saying that this is the staging ground for the next 9/11. Is that fear mongering or is that the truth?

REP. JIM MCDERMOTT: That's fear mongering. It has -- it may have some pieces of truth in it that we've created an area of turmoil in which these kinds of things are going to spring. But we will only make it worse by getting in there and trying to kill this one and kill that one. We're going to kill a lot of collateral damage as we did in Iraq. We'll make more and more people angry at us and we simply cannot solve these things with military power. It's going to take diplomacy. Maliki has to go and Assad has to go. Now how we get that to happen? We've got to get the Russians, we’ve got to get the Iranians and everybody together if we want peace in the area, that's the only way it's going to occur. Otherwise you're just going to have of all these people killing one another and we'll look like fools. We've already spent trillions of dollars in this war. And we do not need to spend anymore.

5:13 p.m. Eastern
2 minutes and 48 seconds

SCHULTZ: What role do you think -- what role does Maliki play for the conditions in Iraq as you give analysis to this?

GENERAL WESLEY CLARK: Oh, I think Maliki is responsible for a lot of the strive and he certainly abused the Sunni population, the leadership, he's targeted them. He is an authoritarian leader, we did put him in. I agree with a lot of what Congressman McDermott had to say and a lot of things you said early on. But I see this a little bit differently. I do think there is a real threat here. I don't think we want to let ISIS run rampant. And I don't think we want Iran in there on the ground in Iraq. I think this is one of these points in history where if the United States is able to take modest military action, it could have a significant benefit. And so I've felt as I watched this situation emerge, that if we put in the right kind of liaison with the Iraqi leadership and use the special forces assets that we have available, that we could bring in the right kind of combat power, get the intelligence we need and have a decisive impact militarily. Now the military impact is less important than the diplomatic impact. A U.S. Power and resolve in this crisis has a big impact -- should have a big impact on Maliki. It's a job of our diplomats and our president to take that leverage and use it. It should also have an impact on Iran. As I watch the Iranian nuclear talks I sometimes get the impression Iranians think they are still the most powerful force in the region or now that the United States no longer has boots on the ground, they’re the most powerful force in the region, Iran. And that's a mistake. We don't want that to happen. So, you know, Ed, the hardest of all military operations is to withdraw on the battlefield under pressure. The United States has done that in Iraq. We're doing it in Afghanistan. And we have to be very careful because we're a global power, we're the most powerful country in the world. We do have global interests. And by the way, we have to watch very carefully the price of oil because while some people might tell you even if ISIS took over they would be pumping oil like mad, they might. But, any problem with that oil market is going to impact directly on the American economy. And it's just an unfortunate fact of life. I saw one of your viewers tweeted, let's get some alternative energy. You bet. We need it. But right now, we don't have the ability to cut the cord to OPEC. So --

SCHULTZ: General --         

CLARK: We're in some risk here.
 

Laura Flint
Laura Flint is a 2014 summer intern for the MRC's News Analysis Division.