Mort Zuckerman Smacks Down Eleanor Clift's Claim Egypt Protesters Are Secular: 'That's Nonsense!'

For the second week in a row, Newsweek's Eleanor Clift found herself in a hostile crowd on PBS's "McLaughlin Group."

During a lengthy segment about the crisis in Eqypt, after Clift claimed the protesters were secular, the entire panel almost pounced on her with Mort Zuckerman saying several times, "That's nonsense" (video follows with transcript and commentary):

MORT ZUCKERMAN: We have an absolutely perfect example of whether our interests and our values are aligned here in Egypt, because our interests as Pat says, we're tied in with a lot of very, very conservative, monarchial or shall we say non- democratic regimes, all throughout the region of the Middle East. They're in our interests. The question is, our values, if democracy becomes our sole value, we're going to have a lot of problems. So the President does have a very difficult line in a sense to walk.

JOHN MCLAUGHLIN, HOST: Did he preserve a line of proper distinction and clarity between these, these, these two situations? The United States and Egypt? Did he draw too close to Egypt.

ZUCKERMAN: Certainly it was very easy to draw a very clear line at this stage of the game. But we don't know what the problem is going to be.

PAT BUCHANAN, MSNBC Here's the problem. The problem is, John.

MCLAUGHLIN: Let’s turn to General Crowley. General Crowley, what do you think of Egypt?

MONICA CROWLEY, WASHINGTON TIMES: Sir. Reporting for duty! Look, I think in many instances the train has left the station, and when we talk about the President's ability to influence events, we saw that was incredibly limited even within the context of Egypt. And now if this starts spreading abroad, it’s going to be so far beyond what the United States can influence here.

MCLAUGHLIN: Is Obama going to take any of that rap?

CROWLEY: What you might get is far darker influences than what we had with a military regime.

BUCHANAN: John, look at Gates. Look at the military to military relationship. What we want is maintaining that peace treaty. I think the Egyptian military doesn't want to put an army in Sinai. The Israelis want that. But here’s the thing, do the people, does the Muslim Brotherhood, want that? No! They would like to cut ties with Israel.

MCLAUGHLIN: Quickly.

ELEANOR CLIFT, NEWSWEEK: I’m sorry, but the protesters were secular…

CROWLEY: Oh no, Eleanor.

CLIFT: …they were peaceful…

ZUCKERMAN: Oh you don’t know that. That is nonsense!

CLIFT: …they were not talking about Islam or war on America.

ZUCKERMAN: That is nonsense!

Given her treatment by this exact same panel last week, it makes you wonder if Clift is going to ask McLaughlin to mix things up a bit so that she doesn't consistently look the fool.

Let's hope if this does happen, McLaughlin declines her request.

This is far too entertaining.

Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard
Noel Sheppard, Associate Editor of NewsBusters, passed away in March of 2014.