Clinton calls Fox interview "conservative hitjob"

Monday, September 25, 2006

Former U.S. President, Bill Clinton

In this week's interview on Fox News Sunday, former U.S. President Bill Clinton described a question by the host Chris Wallace as a "conservative hitjob."

According to the introduction given by Wallace, a pre-interview agreement to split the interview evenly between questions on Clinton's Global Initiative and any topic of the network's choosing was in place. Things didn't quite work out like that.

After a few opening questions, Wallace raised the issue of Clinton's efforts to deal with Osama bin Laden, "Why didn't you do more to put bin Laden and al-Quaeda out of business?" The 60-year old ex-president took issue with this characterization of his record, highlighting his efforts to kill bin Laden and comparing them with the record of the current administration before September 11, 2001, "they had no meetings on bin Laden for nine months after I left office."

Clinton's determination to rebut the implication that he had not done enough to kill bin Laden took the majority of the first two sections of the three-part interview. As well as condemning the inaction of "neo-conservatives" and accusing them of hypocrisy for describing his efforts to kill bin Laden as an "obsession", Clinton asked Wallace why the same questions were not put to the current administration about their pre-September 11 efforts, if any, to kill bin Laden.

Clinton pointed out that the political-right attacked his efforts to kill bin Laden as an attempt to "wag the dog." He also said that he could not get the FBI or CIA to certify that bin Laden was responsible for the USS Cole attack, so his battle plans for attacking the Taliban in Afghanistan were not put into action.

In the much reduced amount of time devoted to Clinton's Global Initiative it was revealed that compared to last year's 2.5 billion dollars, this year commitments totaling more than $7.3 billion have been raised, $3 billion of that from Richard Branson's pledge to give all the profits from his rail operations.