Media and combat expert Andy Martin says Bill O’Reilly clearly exaggerated and inflated his “combat” and “war” experience
Media critic and war/military/intelligence expert Andy Martin says that Bill O’Reilly clearly inflated his “combat” or “war” credentials by claiming a civil disturbance in Buenos Aires was a combat or war situation. Andy wades into the O’Reilly/Mother Jones/CBS News/New York Times and Washington Post “conflation” over what Bill O’Reilly did in
over thirty years ago. “Bill O’Reilly has shot himself in the foot,” Andy says.
“Instead of ignoring Mother Jones, O’Reilly has opened up floodgates concerning
how he has misrepresented his experiences during and after the Falklands
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Andy Martin says Bill O’Reilly clearly inflated and distorted and misrepresented O’Reilly’s “war” and “combat” credentials
Andy says that O’Reilly has opened up a mess that is of his own making, and O’Reilly is certain to be a loser when the exchange is over
( New York, NY February 23, 2015) Let
me start with a disclaimer or series of disclaimers. I do not like Fox News.
Fox News has treated me abysmally. I have every reason to dislike the place. I
do like Bill O’Reilly’s show, watch it regularly and I think he does an
excellent job of focusing on threats to our national security. So I bear Bill
no personal animus or hostility.
But O’Reilly is clearly wrong in claiming he “covered a war” and saw “combat” in
over thirty years ago.
If O’Reilly had come to me for advice on how to handle Mother Jones, I would have proffered an aphorism from my late Uncle Bill Vasiliou, who schooled me on how to deal with such nonsense. But O’Reilly, pugilist that he is, has now waded into a battle with CBS News, the New York Times, the Washington Post and only incidentally Mother Jones.
One more disclaimer: Bill O’Reilly’s misconduct is not even remotely related to or on a par with Brian Williams’ misconduct at NBC News.
When attacked, O’Reilly doubled down on his ridiculous claim that he was in combat, and is now dealing with a conflagration of his own making. O’Reilly is trying to bluster his way over the voices of his critics but he is doomed to failure. The match is no longer between Fox News and Mother Jones. CBS, the Times and Post level the playing field in this street fight.
First, in a generic sense O’Reilly was sent to
to “cover a war.” The only problem was that you could not get to the war one
Urban demonstrations such as O’Reilly claims to have covered are neither
“combat” nor “war” as revived research concerning the aftermath of Argentina’s
defeat is now confirming (see below).
O’Reilly’s ridiculous claim that he obtained the “greatest war film ever” is insulting to anyone’s intelligence who has any knowledge of real combat coverage and footage. I was in
Iraq and other
war zones. And I was actually out in the field in actual combat zones (pictures
at AndyMartin.com). But I would never have considered a street demonstration in
DaNang or Saigon a “combat” situation (at least not
until the Tet Offensive or the final days when Saigon
collapsed and fell to the North).
Is what O’Reilly is guilty of the same level of lying as Brian Williams? Absolutely not. Brian Williams lied to his audience this month. O’Reilly has inflated something which took place decades ago at CBS, long before he was hired by Fox News. So O’Reilly’s claim that the attack on him is a tit-for-tat for Williams is, if true, complete nonsense. O’Reilly was and is clear on that front.
But, as often happens, O’Reilly’s latest exaggerations and misrepresentations in defending himself against Mother Jones may have reopened the statute of limitations over a dispute concerning what happened 33 years ago. On that basis he may suffer some ignominy similar to Williams’. If O’Reilly had kept his mouth shut, that would have been the end of the flare up. By reclaiming and reviving his goofy exaggerations and self-inflated views of combat and war in
over thirty years ago, O’Reilly may now be doing unnecessary, but now unavoidable,
damage to his brand.
Next time, Bill, call me before you want to inflate your resume. My own Uncle Bill has the answer.
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