updated 9/8/2006 11:49:45 AM ET 2006-09-08T15:49:45

Guests: Joel Rosenberg, David Brock, Bernie Ward, Heidi Harris

TUCKER CARLSON, HOST:  Welcome to the show.  I‘m Tucker Carlson.  The fifth anniversary of the September 11 attacks is just four days from now.  We got a grim reminder today with the release of this tape showing Osama bin Laden meeting with some of the 9/11 hijackers during the planning of those attacks.

The White House is continuing to beat the “war on terror” drum. 

Here‘s President Bush earlier today.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

GEORGE WALKER BUSH, PRESIDENT OF THE UNITED STATES:  We are safer because we‘ve taken action to protect the homeland.  We are safer because we are on the offense against our enemies overseas.  We‘re safer because of the skill and sacrifice of the brave Americans who defend our people.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  But the president‘s terror talk may not be calming everyone.  A “New York Times”/CBS News poll found more than two thirds of New Yorkers are still worried about a terror attack.  In the midst of all of this, a group of former Clinton administration employees is up in arms over ABC‘s upcoming six-hour docudrama, “The Path to 9/11.”

The former president himself, President Clinton, is demanding ABC change the film or pull it off the air altogether.  He‘s reportedly incensed over scenes like this one, in which FBI and CIA officials complain about the Clinton administration‘s apparent unwillingness to take terrorism very seriously.  Watch.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  We‘re all in danger.  The fact is, terrorism is perceived in this administration being a law-and-order problem, period.

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  How do you win a law-and-orderly war?

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  You don‘t.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  Now the left-wing blog Media Matters for America is calling on its readers to e-mail ABC, urging the network to postpone “The Path to 9/11.”  Joining me now from Washington, the head of Media Matters, David Brock.  David, welcome.

DAVID BROCK, PRESIDENT, MEDIA MATTERS FOR AMERICA:  Hey, thank you, Tucker.

CARLSON:  So a bunch of Clinton people, former Clinton officials, want to censor this project.  Why are you helping them?

BROCK:  I don‘t really think it‘s about what former Clinton people want or even what we want.  I mean, the story‘s changed today, as you know.  I mean, ABC now admits—ABC admits—that they made stuff up in the production of this movie, that there are composite characters and made-up dialogue.

The writer-producer today is quoted as saying that a key scene involving Sandy Berger, the former national security adviser, where he supposedly is declining to give an order to kill Osama bin Laden and slams down a phone—and the writer-producer of the movie says Sandy Berger did not slam down the phone.  This is not in the 9/11 report, and accidents occur in making the film.

And Tom Kean, the adviser, the Republican former co-chair of the 9/11 commission, has said some of the people shown there probably weren‘t there.  So all the people involved in this movie have now said that it‘s fiction. 

That‘s the issue.

CARLSON:  Well, it is fiction, David.  I mean, you‘ve got to be kidding!  This is by definition partly fictionalized.  It‘s a docudrama.  It is not a documentary, and it‘s not billed as such.  This is a broad-brush account of what ABC and the producers of this film think happened in the run-up to 9/11.  No one is claiming every part of this actually happened.  That‘s the whole point!  I mean, that‘s news from nowhere, isn‘t it?

BROCK:  It‘s not.  I mean, they do claim that the movie is based on facts in the 9/11 commission report.  So when you go to the 9/11 commission report and try to check some of the scenes, you find in many cases that the 9/11 commission report says the opposite of what...

CARLSON:  No, they actually don‘t find that, David!

BROCK:  ... this is represented as.

CARLSON:  Actually...

BROCK:  And this is...

CARLSON:  Wait.  Hold on.  That‘s just—just to correct what you said, because what you said is incorrect.  ABC is no longer claiming—if they did, they are not, at this point, anyway, claiming that it is based on or taken directly from the 9/11 report.  They‘re saying they used the 9/11 report in putting together this docudrama.  But the point that they‘re making, that the Bush administration and the Clinton administration both had a hand in allowing America to be unprepared for 9/11, and that the Bushy—the Clinton administration didn‘t take terrorism seriously enough and didn‘t do all it could to apprehend Osama bin Laden.  That‘s beyond dispute!  We know that to be true.  That‘s a fact.

So the Clinton people are mad about it.  They‘re defensive about it.  I get it.  But why are you helping them to rewrite history?  Why are you being a shill for their interests in this case?

BROCK:  Look, this is, as you say being billed as a docudrama, but there‘s no docu to the drama.  It‘s all drama.  The Media Matters mission is to fight misinformation in the media, and everything we know about this movie, including the admissions by ABC, by the writer-producer, by Tom Kean, show that it‘s a total distortion and totally fictionalized...

(CROSSTALK)

BROCK:  I just have to add one thing.

CARLSON:  Yes.

BROCK:  You know there are educational materials being disseminated by ABC and Scholastic to 100,000 teachers across the United States.  So even if one was to take your point, OK, the movie‘s all made up, it‘s inexcusable—it‘s inexcusable that educational materials that have false information, that say Iraq was integral to 9/11 -- now, you know, even President Bush says that‘s not true.

CARLSON:  But actually...

BROCK:  How could this be happening?

CARLSON:  ... the educational material don‘t say that.  But one point at a time.

BROCK:  But...

CARLSON:  Now, wait!  Hold on.  Sit down!  You are, I think, in partisan hitman mode, and that‘s a shame—I‘m serious! -- because this—history is important because it informs how we take on the future.  This is a quote from “The Washington Post,” not from any right-wing cabal.  Quote, “The Clinton administration had as many as four chances to kill or capture Osama bin Laden between December 1998 and July 1999,”  just between that period.  “The Post” also goes on to say, “In 1996, the government of Sudan offered to hand over Osama bin Laden.”  The Clinton administration gave up on that because, quote, “It lacked a case to indict him in U.S. courts.”

The point is, the Clinton administration did not, in a series of well-documented, beyond-dispute instances, do all it could to apprehend or kill Osama bin Laden.  We know that as a fact!

BROCK:  Look...

CARLSON:  So I‘m sorry you don‘t like it, but that‘s just true!

BROCK:  It‘s not what I like or don‘t like.  What I don‘t like is a film that—you know, any film can show failures of any administration.  That‘s fine.  But don‘t make up the failures.  Don‘t fictionalize.  Stay true to the facts.

CARLSON:  But that‘s the claim that this film makes, that the Clinton administration did not do it could to apprehend Osama bin Laden...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  ... very touchy about that.

BROCK:  They make the case...

CARLSON:  It wounds.  It hurts to hear it, but it‘s true!

BROCK:  They make the case with false depictions.  They show Madeleine Albright—they defame Madeleine Albright, saying that she tried to warn Pakistan about U.S. air strikes.  She didn‘t.  The 9/11 commission said it was the U.S. military that did that.  That‘s defamation.

CARLSON:  OK.  It‘s defamation?  That‘s ridiculous!  That‘s—that‘s

you know what?  You‘re reading off a list of talking points!  And again, you‘re not addressing...

BROCK:  I‘m not reading.

CARLSON:  No, no!  You‘re—yes, you are!

BROCK:  I am not.

CARLSON:  You‘re repeating talking points distilled, come up with, written by...

BROCK:  Come on!

CARLSON:  ... people who worked in—no, who represent...

BROCK:  You don‘t know that.

CARLSON:  ... the interests...

BROCK:  That‘s not the case.

CARLSON:  I do know that!  I‘ve read everything you‘ve been e-mailing to me and other journalists all day long!

BROCK:  What we‘ve been e-mailing...

CARLSON:  And it is basically...

BROCK:  ... is our original research, Tucker.

CARLSON:  OK.  Well, I think, in this case...

BROCK:  And if you don‘t like it...

CARLSON:  ... as many others, you are acting as a partisan Democratic shill, and it‘s a shame...

BROCK:  That‘s absolutely...

CARLSON:  ... on behalf—hold on! -- on behalf of people...

BROCK:  If we‘re going to get into name-calling, Tucker...

CARLSON:  ... who have a vested interest—I‘m not name-calling!

BROCK:  Yes, you are.

CARLSON:  I just think this history is important, and there are people...

BROCK:  It is important.

CARLSON:  ... John Podesta, Sandy Berger, who were there at the time, who have a vested interest in presenting their side of the case, and I think it‘s important that our viewers know that, that this is coming from a specific perspective.  It‘s not just disinterested historians trying to correct the record!

BROCK:  It‘s coming from the writer-producer of the film, who says Sandy Berger never hung up the phone.  It‘s coming from ABC, that admits the film is inaccurate.  And when CBS found inaccuracies in their Reagan biopic, which was, you know, a docudrama, they pulled the movie.

CARLSON:  They pulled the movie because of pressure—political pressure from conservatives and former Reagan administration employees, who said they didn‘t want their hero presented in this way.  And at that time, liberals had a fit!  They said, This is censorship, this is outrageous.  No one claimed this was a—they‘re making the same argument that I am making now.  And I actually didn‘t argue with them because I sort of agree.  I mean, people have a right to take poetic and artistic license to get a true point across.  And in this case, you‘re acting on...

BROCK:  So you‘re saying...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  ... censor the truth!

BROCK:  ... the facts can be wrong if some overall point is true?

CARLSON:  No.

BROCK:  Is that what you‘re saying?

CARLSON:  That‘s not—that‘s not at all what I‘m saying!

BROCK:  OK.

CARLSON:  I am saying that this docudrama does not purport to be a documentary, A.  And B...

BROCK:  Educational materials are going out to school children based...

CARLSON:  Those educational materials...

BROCK:  ... on this movie.

CARLSON:  No, but those educational materials...

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  You can‘t point to one thing that is inaccurate!  You can‘t point to a single thing that is inaccurate in those materials!

BROCK:  Yes, I gave you...

CARLSON:  Go ahead and point to one!

BROCK:  ... one earlier.  I gave you one earlier.  They said Iraq was integral to—an integral country in 9/11, and that‘s not the case.

CARLSON:  No, actually—actually, they did not say that.  The statement that it—no!  In those materials, it said the president responded and the Congress responded to 9/11 by invading Afghanistan and invading Iraq and doing a number of other things.  It doesn‘t...

BROCK:  Was Iraq integral to 9/11?

CARLSON:  It said he responded to 9/11 by doing it.  The point is, you are twisting—you‘re spinning this...

BROCK:  Why do they...

CARLSON:  ... from a certain perspective.

BROCK:  Why do they say that it was thought that there were weapons of mass destruction in Iraq and never come back and say, Hey, those weren‘t found?

CARLSON:  Well, actually, weapons of mass destruction were found in Iraq, just not enough to justify a war...

BROCK:  OK.

CARLSON:  ... in the opinion of many, including me.  I mean, I‘m not defending the war in Iraq, I‘m merely saying that you can‘t point to those materials and say they‘re factually wrong.  You‘re just taking the side of people who...

BROCK:  I am not.

CARLSON:  ... are mad because their inadequacies are being held up to public view!

BROCK:  We‘ve looked at those materials closely, and anybody who wants to can go on our Web site and see that they are filled with misinformation.

CARLSON:  OK.  I think your Web site is filled with misinformation, and never moreso than in this case.  I think it‘s embarrassing, what you‘re doing, and I would be ashamed, if I were you, but you‘re not.

BROCK:  I‘m not.

CARLSON:  And I‘m sorry that you‘re not.  David Brock, thanks for coming on.

BROCK:  Thank you.

CARLSON:  Still to come: The president of Iran still wants to debate George W. Bush.  Will it be a president-to-president smackdown at the U.N.?  And the latest on a story we first brought you yesterday, the TV reporter beaten in an attack that was caught on tape.  You won‘t believe the wimpy victim and what he‘s saying now.  Hear him whine on “Beat the Press” when we come back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  If you wanted to put two of the world‘s craziest leaders in one room, it would be hard to beat the presidents of Iran and Venezuela, and putting them at the U.N. is just the icing on the cake.  Well, that‘s going to happen if Mahmoud Ahmadinejad has his way.  The leader of Iran and Huge Chavez of Venezuela reportedly are headed for the United Nations this month, where Ahmadinejad says he hopes to debate President Bush.  Well, that debate isn‘t likely to happen, of course, but the Iranian president‘s behavior does raise the question, Is he sane?  And if he is, what exactly does he want?

For answers, we welcome the author of “Epicenter: Why the Current Rumblings in the Middle East Will Change Your World.”  Joining me from Washington, Joel Rosenberg, a former aide to Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.  Joel, welcome.  Is this man sane?

JOEL ROSENBERG, FORMER AIDE TO ISRAELI PRIME MINISTER BENJAMIN

NETANYAHU:  I think he‘s sane.  I think he‘s evil.  That‘s the issue.  I would say that he is—look, he‘s a man who‘s laying out his religious views.  He‘s a Shiite Muslim.  He says the end of the world is rapidly approaching.  He says that the way to hasten the coming of the Islamic messiah, know as the 12th imam, is to annihilate Israel, the little Satan, and the United States, the Great Satan.  That‘s what my book, “Epicenter,” is about.

My political thriller, “The Ezekiel Option,” last year was about this Iranian Russian alliance against Israel.  And you‘re seeing a Russian-Iranian alliance form right now.

CARLSON:  Is—I mean, what does Russia get out of it exactly?

ROSENBERG:  I don‘t know, but I will tell you something, Tucker. 

Right—so far, it‘s been money.  They are selling billions of dollars worth of arms and nuclear technology to Iran.

But I would tell you that what this White House has to face right now is not just the threat of an Iranian nuclear power and threat to Israel and against us, but also the fact that Russia is joining the “axis of evil.”  They‘ve sold a billion dollars worth of arms just since last December to Iran.  They‘re training Iranian nuclear scientists.  Russia is running political interference for Iran at the United Nations.

This is a very serious issue that President Bush is going to have to address in his own speech at the United Nations.  How far are we going to let Iran go, and how far are we going to let Russia go in helping Iran achieve its apocalyptic mission?

CARLSON:  Well, why are we letting Russia go anywhere in that direction?  I mean, do we have leverage over Russia?  Presumably, we do.  And why aren‘t we exercising it?  And why aren‘t we hearing more about this?  How can Russia be actively helping Iran build nuclear weapons, and it‘s not on the front page of every paper, every day?  Why is that?

ROSENBERG:  Well, I think that—you know, obviously, this president, who I support strongly in this war on terror—he made a judgment on Vladimir Putin early on in his administration in which he thought Mr. Putin was someone we could trust.

CARLSON:  I believe he looked into his soul, I think, at the time.

ROSENBERG:  He did say that.

CARLSON:  That‘s right.  Yes.

ROSENBERG:  Now, I think he‘s—to be honest, he‘s reevaluating that, and for good reason.

CARLSON:  Reevaluating his soul?

ROSENBERG:  Reevaluating his soul, and certainly his purpose.

(LAUGHTER)

ROSENBERG:  Look, this is a serious issue, and I think that it has not been an A topic of late because of Iraq, because al Qaeda.  But the truth is, the biggest threat we face right now is an Iranian nuclear option.  If they get these weapons, if Russia helps them, Iran is building an alliance right now not just with Russia but with two other nuclear powers, China and North Korea.  Iran is not the Fidel Castro of the ‘50s, just ranting and raving against us, it‘s the Castro of 1962...

CARLSON:  Right.

ROSENBERG:  ... where Russia was providing missiles and nuclear arms to destroy us.  That‘s the situation we face right now.  It is incredibly dangerous when you understand that Iran‘s president is driven by this apocalyptic end-of-the-world scenario that Shiite Muslims generally believe, and he particularly.

CARLSON:  Now, last time he was at the U.N., he made reference, I think, to spirits in the room or to his apocalyptic vision, made other statements that made people doubt his sanity.  Does it—what does it say about the U.N., though, that someone like Ahmadinejad can show up and be treated, you know, as a serious figure?

ROSENBERG:  Well, that is a deeply inherent flaw in the whole system. 

But the point is not Ahmadinejad coming to the U.N. and railing against us.  The question is, What does the president, our president, President Bush, going to do and say?  Look, I don‘t think President Bush wants Iran to be the issue when he goes to the U.N. on the 19th.  He‘d rather have it be Iraq and al Qaeda.  But the truth is, Iran is forcing itself to the center, the epicenter of events right now, and we don‘t really have a choice.

The August 31 deadline has passed.  Iran has not stopped pursuing nuclear weapons.  Diplomacy, unfortunately, has not worked, which leaves us in a very difficult situation, Tucker, as you know.  Are we going to have to take military action?  No—there is almost no support in this country for it, but we are running out of options.  And based on Ahmadinejad‘s timetable of two or three years to the end of the world, and he said that a year ago, by his clock, we‘re running out of time very quickly.

CARLSON:  Well, it seems to me, I mean, if what you said about Russia is true, and I believe it is, that Russia is a full-blown ally with very deep ties now to Iran—Russia obviously is a force at the United Nations.  If our plan is to get the world community through the United Nations to rally against Iran, that‘s pretty unlikely to happen if Russia‘s on its side, no?

ROSENBERG:  That‘s right.  I believe that Russia and China have—have—have made their bed, and it‘s with the Iranians.  Why?  There‘s a whole series of issues.  That‘s what I describe in this—this book that‘s coming out in a couple of weeks.  Actually, it comes out September 18, the day before Ahmadinejad‘s speech.

Regardless of why, the issue now is for this president, for this administration and for Congress to recognize this Russian-Iranian linkage and to put the full force of United States pressure on the Russians.  We—this is just going too far.  It‘s not as though Russia is neutral in this.  Russia is actively joining the “axis of evil,” and this is a—is probably the most dangerous relationship on the planet right now is Russia and Iran.

CARLSON:  It‘s upsetting, and for some reason, little known.  Joel Rosenberg, thanks a lot.

ROSENBERG:  Thank you, Tucker.

CARLSON:  Still to come: Yet another Iranian leader is headed for our shores.  This time it‘s former president of Iran Mohammed Khatami.  He‘s speaking at Harvard.  Not everyone is playing along, though.  The governor of Massachusetts, Mitt Romney, says he will not provide security.  Is there anything wrong with that?  Also ahead, why reporters in Washington may owe Karl Rove an apology.  Of course, he‘s not going to get one.  We‘ll bring you the story anyway, though, when we return.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Time now for “Beat the Press.”  First up, the most famous face on television today, John Mattes, the local Fox reporter who had quite the unfortunate run-in with raging Rosa (ph) and smackdown Sam Sulieman (ph).  He was on “The O‘Reilly Factor” last night on Fox.  Take a look.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

BILL O‘REILLY, HOST:  First of all, how‘re you doing, John?  Are you

OK?

JOHN MATTES, REPORTER ATTACKED ON CAMERA:  I‘m a bit broken up.

O‘REILLY:  What do you got?  What kind of—internal injuries?  I mean, we can see what‘s on your face.

MATTES:  A lot of ribs.  My face has been obviously dug up a great deal and just beat up.

O‘REILLY:  OK.  You‘ll be OK, thought.  Got a couple cracked ribs, your face.  You‘re going to be all right.

MATTES:  Yes.  I‘m going to make it.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  Still smarting, but he toughened up for his “Today” show interview this morning, and it‘s a good thing he did because as you‘ll hear, he‘s got more battles to fight.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  At any point during the middle of this attack, John, are you thinking, Why didn‘t I become a weatherman?  You don‘t see people throwing haymakers at Al Roker.

MATTES:  Yes, but this is what I‘ve been doing.  This is what I care about.  This is what people hire me to do, which is to uncover the corruption and stand with the people of San Diego, and that‘s what I‘ve tried to do.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  I‘m sorry to be mean, but a couple questions.  It‘s been three days.  Don‘t you think it‘s time to wash the blood off your face?  Yes, it probably is.  And second, do you have an almost uncontrollable urge to beat him up again after watching him talk about his job standing up for the people of San Diego?  I know I do.  I confess.

Next up, Nancy Grace.  Parents, please get your children out of the room because we‘re about to show you something that defies everything you‘ve taught your children about manners.  Here‘s one of Grace‘s guests, a realtor who was attacked while showing a house, attempting to explain what happened to her.  Watch.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE:  When he came to the open house, he came about five minutes after the time it was supposed to end.  And he presented very well groomed, very tanned, lots of cologne.  And there were no signals that went off right then and there.  As time progressed, he engaged me in a lot of conversation, and then he ultimately went into the basement, called me into the basement with a question...

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  That‘s a Hyundai commercial, by the way, leaving us wondering, What happened after he called you into the basement?  Did he attack you?  Did you escape?  Did the two of you fall in love, get married, move to Maui, open a bed and breakfast?  I mean, what happened?  We don‘t know!  And in fact, Nancy Grace never told us when she came back from the Hyundai commercial.  The cliffhanger continues!  Tune in tonight to find out.

And finally, if you‘ve ever wondered what exactly they‘re watching in the top secret National Counterterrorism Center, wonder no more.  CBS News has answered that question.  Take a close look at what‘s playing on television, the monitors behind correspondent David Martin.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

DAVID MARTIN, CBS CORRESPONDENT:  This is the nerve center of the war against center.  It‘s a 24/7 operations center.

(END VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  Fighting terror and watching MSNBC!  Now, that report opened with a very solemn warning from CBS.  They said, “We have agreed not to reveal the location of the Counterterrorism Center in exchange for the access given to us by the U.S. government.”  Well, as MSNBC‘s David Shuster points out, the location of that super-secret counterterrorism center is on the White House Web site.  It‘s in McLean, Virginia, we can reveal.  CBS News watching MSNBC.

Well, how would you like to help us “Beat the Press”?  Give us a call and tell us what you‘ve seen.  The number here, 877-BTP-5876.  Give us a call.

Still to come, another milestone in Iraq, or is it?  The Iraqis are taking control of their troops beginning today.  Is it a disaster waiting to happen?

And Blackberry addicts rejoice.  You may soon be able to give your boss a lawsuit for giving you the device in the first place.  That story when we return.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Still to come, Karl Rove probably deserves an apology from some top political reporters.  Not that he‘s getting one.  Also ahead, why Cindy Sheehan fantasizes about killing President Bush.  How‘s that for creepy?  We‘ll get that in just a minute, but first, here are your headlines.  

(NEWSBREAK)

CARLSON:  Time now for 3 on 3, where we welcome two quick witted panelists to discuss three of today‘s most interesting stories.  Joining us from Las Vegas, radio talk show host Heidi Harris and from San Francisco radio talk show host Bernie Ward. Welcome both.  First up, Iran‘s ex-president is due to speak at Harvard University this Sunday.  Plenty of Americans are outraged by Mohammed Khatami‘s calls for the destruction of Israel and his support for violent jihad, including jihad against us.  Well Massachusetts governor Mitt Romney is doing something about it.  He is refusing to provide security for Khatami, some are saying that is mean.  Bernie Ward, I‘m totally for it.  Why should we pay for this creep‘s bodyguards? 

BERNIE WARD, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  Hey Tucker did we pay for protection for (INAUDIBLE) when he came here? 

CARLSON:  In 1956, I don‘t know, I wasn‘t around then.  

WARD:  And did we pay for Gorbachev, did we pay -

CARLSON:  We did.

WARD:  Well let me ask you, which is a bigger threat to this country, the Soviet Union or Iran?

CARLSON:  That depends whether—I mean the Soviet Union was predictable, evil but predictable, had interests at stake.  If it turns out that—we don‘t know which is a bigger threat yet.  

WARD:  Oh, but we know yet.  So let me—We were told that they wanted to kill us, bury us end our lives, take over the world, then they came to this country and we provided them with protection, did we not? 

CARLSON:  Yes we did and some people thought it was wrong at the time, but I‘m not talking about something that happened 50 years ago.

WARD:  So we should let a leader of Iran come here, what, get killed here and that would just enhance our status how? 

HEIDI HARRIS, RADIO TALK SHOW HOST:  Wait a minute, he‘s already got state department protection.  Mitt Romney just doesn‘t want to allow Massachusetts Police to handle it.  Come on, I‘ve made the distinction here.  

WARD:  Why, why not?

HARRIS:  Why should he?

WARD:  Because this is somebody who is going to be under threat in our country and because we have an obligation to be good hosts, number one, and number two because if he got killed here, it would be the absolute disaster of all disasters for us around the world. 

HARRIS:  Oh please, oh, come on.  

CARLSON:  Bernie, if I can just ask you just a very quick question, and I want to get Heidi in on this.  But we, just to make sure I understand Bernie Ward‘s rules of international etiquette here.  We have an obligation you say to protect anybody who comes to our country from abroad, A, no matter who it is?  Pol Pot, doesn‘t matter, A.  And B, if we are mean to a former Iranian president or don‘t extend him the hospitality he deserves, the Iranians will suddenly not like us?  They hate us already.  They killed all those marines in Beirut in ‘83, I mean that‘s ridiculous.

WARD:  Excuse me, protection is not hospitality.  Protection is, there is a foreign dignitary coming into our country and we give him protection.  Romney is show boating because he wants to run for president and so he‘s saying we‘re not going to give him any Massachusetts help. The bottom line is, this guy has been invited to come into our country, he‘s been given a visa by the state department and we have a history I guess of accepting people coming into this country that we don‘t like and now you‘re saying that we‘re not going to protect him because, why?  Because we want him to get hurt?

CARLSON:  Well Heidi actually, Bernie raises an interesting point though. This guy has already been given permission to come here, a visa and state department protection as you said, from Washington.  Mitt Romney is the governor of Massachusetts, he is show boating, Bernie‘s right.  He does want to run for president, this is showboating.  Why should the governor of Massachusetts get to make our foreign policy? 

HARRIS:  Well he‘s not making our foreign policy he just doesn‘t want to roll out the red carpet for him.  He‘s not saying, by the way, that Khatami has no right to be in Massachusetts.  He‘s not saying anything like that.  He‘s just saying I don‘t want state resources used for it, which a lot of his constituents agree with.  He has a right to make that decision as a governor.  He‘s still going to have department of state protection, Khatami, so what‘s the big deal.  What‘s everybody worried about? 

CARLSON:  Ok Heidi Harris, I think you win that debate.  

HARRIS:  Well thank you Tucker.

CARLSON:  I would have to say.

WARD:  What debate? 

(CROSSTALK)

CARLSON:  Let‘s see how you do on this one.  Now I want to know what you think of this, the CIA leak case, the whole would be scandal.  Remember it was supposed to bring down the Bush administration, remember that.  Well, it fizzled out the other day when Richard Armitage, not Karl Rove, proved to be the man who leaked Valerie Plame‘s identity to the press.  Now the “Washington Post‘s” David Broder said conspiracy theorists in the press owe Rove an apology. 

I think it‘s—I would actually broaden that, I‘m not sure, to simply Rove, I think that all the people, the professional bottom feeders who had gorged on this story for the past couple of years have to admit that it was all ridiculous in the first place and that this guy Fitzgerald is completely out of control. That this investigation amounted to nothing, found nothing, and was pointless and a waste of time, money and energy.  Wouldn‘t you agree, Bernie Ward?

WARD:  Well, first of all, you didn‘t even state the case correctly.  The fact of the matter is, Armitage may have been the first one who talked to Novak, but we already know Libby had been talking to Judy Miller and Libby had been talking to others about her before Armitage ever met with Novak.  We also know that Patrick Fitzgerald has already stated that there was a concerted effort by the vice president‘s office to come after Joe Wilson and his wife and to reveal his identity and we have Karl Rove telling Chris Matthews that Joe Wilson F‘d with us and so now we can f--- with him and his family.  So no Tucker, not only does he not deserve an apology, these guys called up six different reporters to try to get somebody to run with this story, Tucker.  So what do you want to talk about in this. 

CARLSON:  You‘re pretty bold to continue to defend an absurdity like this investigation.

HARRIS:  No kidding.

CARLSON:  Wait, may I ask one quick question, what‘s the point of a criminal investigation? Is it to unearth things that are unattractive, violations in etiquette?  No, it‘s to discover crimes and then prosecute them.  And this investigation discovered—the Bush administration because they‘re a bunch of morons in certain cases like this one.

WARD:  No, who asked, what agency asked for this investigation?

CARLSON:  I believe the CIA originally asked for this investigation.  

WARD:  Why? 

CARLSON:  And it was because they were angry that Valerie Plame‘s identity had been revealed in the press and they didn‘t like that. 

WARD:  Because Valerie Plame was in fact a covert agent, correct?

CARLSON:  Tough luck.

WARD:  Was she not a covert agent?

CARLSON:  If she was a covert agent, then I suppose Dick Armitage would be in jail right now or preparing his defense, so no she wasn‘t. 

WARD:  I‘m sorry Tucker, didn‘t (INAUDIBLE) just come out and confirm she was a covert agent?  In fact she was a station chief looking for weapons of mass destruction and Iraq and that she was covert? 

HARRIS:  What does any of that have to do with Karl Rove?

CARLSON:  You‘ve got the terms all wrong Bernie, she was not a station chief.  But tell me—

HARRIS:  This has nothing to do with Karl Rove, you‘re talking about Scooter Libby, you‘re talking about everybody but Karl Rove.  You know who owes Karl Rove an apology? Harry Reid our illustrious senator from Nevada, who was calling for Rove‘s ouster, his firing. Calling him a liar and everything else, that‘s the guy who owes Karl Rove an apology, Harry Reid.

WARD:  Karl Rove lied to a grand jury for a year.  Karl Rove said he never met with Matt Cooper.   Karl Rove hid an email for more than a year that said that he had met with Matt Cooper and that he had talked to him and tried to steer him in the direction of Valerie Plame.  And not only that, they hid the email, they covered up.  And what did Patrick Fitzgerald say, the conspiracy covered this all up so it could get past the 2004 election.  If this had come out prior to 2004 -- 

CARLSON:  Well wait a second Bernie, let me ask you that obvious question.  I think all of our viewers are wondering right now, wait a second, this Bernie Ward, he‘s on  to something.  He knows about crimes that even the special prosecutor Patrick Fitzgerald doesn‘t know about? 

HARRIS:  Yeah, no kidding.

CARLSON:  If what you‘re alleging is true, why haven‘t these guys been indicted yet? 

WARD:  Because the law that they would be indicted under was so broadly written that there was no to bring it. But Tucker I want to make sure you agree with me, Tucker.  Did not Karl Rove and the White House call six different reporters to try to get this story out?

CARLSON:  Yeah, I would imagine.  

WARD:  And did he not tell Chris Matthews that he was going after Wilson and his wife?

HARRIS:  That doesn‘t prove he leaked it first.

CARLSON:  You know I‘m not going to comment on that.  But I have no—

WARD:  Ok.

CARLSON:  Wait, hold up Bernie, I have never—I‘m not here to defend

the White House, and I spend a lot of my show attacking the White House.  I

just think in this case -

WARD:  But who do you think was the architect of all of this?

CARLSON:  But let me finish my sentence.  I don‘t think in this case from day one there was any reason to believe that a crime was committed.  So when you get someone from the Justice Department, a prosecutor with a badge and men with guns standing behind him on the case, you‘d better be looking for a crime buddy.  And there was no crime here.  

WARD:  If there was no crime, why did Libby lie about it then? 

HARRIS:  We‘re talking about Karl Rove.

WARD:  If there was nothing wrong with it Tucker, why did Libby lie about it?

CARLSON:  Well, I mean his contention is that he got confused and forgot. 

WARD:  Well I didn‘t ask you that.  Why would he lie about it?

CARLSON:  And it seems to me, since there was no crime—look, I have no idea why he did or didn‘t do what he did.

WARD:  And why would Rove hide the email, why would Rove hide the email for more than a year that he had talked to Matt Cooper? 

HARRIS:  Why did Harry Reid go on television and say Rove should be fired? 

WARD:  Here‘s a better one Tucker, why did they tell their press secretary that they had never talked about it?

CARLSON:  This is reaching a level of self parody here, ok.  I understand that you‘re mad about the war in Iraq, so am I, so are a lot of people.

WARD:  Oh Tucker.

CARLSON:  But this story tell us—no I‘m dead serious, this story, there is no crime here. This story reveals nothing about the White House that we didn‘t know, it doesn‘t tell us why we went to war in Iraq.  

WARD:  This story reveals one thing Tucker, these guys were willing to compromise national security to get (INAUDIBLE)  

CARLSON:  You just don‘t know, actually you just don‘t know the facts of the case I‘m afraid of Bernie. 

WARD:  I‘m sorry, but you remember what happened to Brewster Jennings?

CARLSON:  Are you familiar Heidi with how our national security has been violated by the revelation of Valerie Plame‘s identity, someone who worked with CIA, how?

WARD:  I‘ll lay it out for you, Tucker.  

CARLSON:  Hold on, I want to get Heidi in here to help me—

HARRIS:  You addressed Karl Rove.  Harry Reid went on television and asked for Karl Rove‘s head basically, accusing him of being a person who leaked.  There‘s no evidence that Karl Rove did it.  And Harry Reid is not apologizing.  

WARD:  What do you mean there‘s no evidence?

HARRIS:  I don‘t hear anybody else apologizing. 

WARD:  What do you mean there‘s no evidence he leaked, of course he leaked.

HARRIS:  Karl Rove was not the first person who said anything, everybody knows that now.

WARD:  Nobody said he was the first, it doesn‘t matter whether he was the first, he did leak classified information.  And by the way—

HARRIS:  Harry Reid said that. 

CARLSON:  You know what, the problem with this whole story is, my head

is spinning, I‘m actually bored and annoyed at the same time.  This story -

WARD:  Tucker, I‘ll do you a favor.

CARLSON:  Wait, wait, slow down.  You get all into the minutia here and—

WARD:  No, I‘ll give you the big picture, I‘ll give you the big picture.

CARLSON:  Ok give me the one sentence bottom line and then I‘m going to move on.

WARD:  One sentence bottom line.  A CIA front group Brewster Jennings that was tracking weapons of mass destruction no longer exists because of this revelation.  

CARLSON:  I don‘t think—as far as I know, if you can prove that, demonstrate to me that Brewster Jennings, this group, this cover that Valerie Plame was using, this ludicrous cover that your average junior reporter at the “Washington Post” couldn‘t have shown -- 

WARD:  Oh, now it‘s ludicrous?

CARLSON:  It was ludicrous.  The idea the CIA would use that as a cover for a top secret agent shows how pathetic and lame negligent the CIA is. 

WARD:  I gave you the sentence Tucker and that‘s a pretty good sentence.

CARLSON:  Is Iraq ready to defend itself, moving on to a top that actually matters, of course not.  Well we‘ve handed over command to that country‘s military forces any way.  After about three years of training coalition forces gave control of the army, the navy and the air force to the Iraqi government.  That all happened today.  The Bush administration is hailing this as an important milestone for Iraq.  Heidi it seems, you know and I hope I‘m wrong, it seems reckless to hand over control to an Iraqi government that doesn‘t have control of its own country.  

HARRIS:  Well that‘s a good point, except that we‘re going to have to eventually give them control and we‘ll still be there right now if anything major happens to kind of oversee it to a certain extent. We‘re not completely leaving the country at this point.  They‘re going to have to take care of themselves.  Here‘s the problem, though, when you‘ve got a nation full of people who have been under external control, meaning either through Saddam or through external forces.  They‘re going to have to learn to control themselves inwardly, and that is a big difference, that‘s a big adjustment for people to make instead of saying I won‘t do something, I won‘t break the law because Saddam says so or the police will get me, you have to say to yourself, each person individually over there has to say themselves, I‘m not going to do it because it‘s not the right thing.  Of course Iraqis are capable of that, they do that in this country all the time.  There is going to have to be a mindset that the police are going to have and the military over there to be able to control the peace.  Is there going to be corruption?  Yeah. We‘ve got corruption here in our police forces -- 

CARLSON:  Well I‘m not even worried about corruption, I mean corruption is a staple, it‘s a fact of life almost in every other part of the world but this one. Everyone is corrupt except us.  No, that‘s true.

HARRIS:  No, not here, no.

CARLSON:  Not here, I agree.  But here‘s the point, there‘s a civil war going on there.  So you have at least two factions, Shiites and Sunnis, but also the Kurds, hate each other and are killing one another because of their ethnic differences and religious differences, right so, do you really want to turn over an army, a military, two leaders in the middle of this, won‘t that be used as a tool in this growing civil war in short order?

HARRIS:  Well, you‘re never going to eliminate it, you‘re never going to eliminate the problems between the Shiites and the Sunnis, that‘s not going to happen and the Kurds.  It‘s not going to happen overnight.  This tribal stuff we don‘t understand.  Those of us who are Americans don‘t get the tribal thing.  If you haven‘t been raised around it, you just don‘t understand it.  But they‘re going to have to work it out here again, we‘re still there so if major things happen, we can certainly help control the peace, but what are we supposed to do, stay there forever?  We can‘t.

CARLSON:  Bernie Ward, I‘m going to take a guess and I‘m going to venture that you‘re not impressed by the turnover of the Iraqi military to the Iraqis today.  Am I on to something?

WARD:  I‘m as impressed as turning over sovereignty to them and turning over a constitution to them, an elected parliament and all of these other turning points that we have been told along the way were milestones for Iraq.  Mr. Maliki has no control over his interior ministers. 

CARLSON:  But isn‘t this what Howard Dean and Ned Lamont and isn‘t this what the left wants, they want the turnover of that country back to the Iraqis?  So why aren‘t you celebrating? Why aren‘t you outside waving an Iraqi flag and saying amen? 

WARD:  Well, I would be if we didn‘t have Americans still there as bull‘s-eyes and I don‘t know what the left, and the left, whatever that means, I think it‘s a meaningless statement in this country now.  But, the fact of the matter is, we‘ve turned it over to them while we‘re going to still control.  I read today this wonderful story that they‘re going to have control over their air force and their navy which of course are nonexistent.  And now they‘re going to have some control over their own military, which is under armed as well as—I‘ll give you one simple example.  They‘re going to have control over their own military, but of course they can‘t call in air strikes, they can‘t use any kind of air force, they‘re going to have to depend on the United States.  So here‘s where I would be thrilled—

CARLSON:  Do you want them to be over armed and able to call in air strikes?

You think that‘s a good idea?

WARD:  What I‘d like to have is, I‘d like to have them in control of their own security forces and Americans come home because we‘re occupying a country that we‘ve already defeated, they‘ve got a government, they‘ve got a constitution, they‘ve got a parliament.  So now it‘s time to say ok, guys, you‘re on your own and no more Americans need to die so that you can kill each other for religious reasons.  We‘re coming home—

HARRIS:  Ok, so you admit it‘s a milestone, that‘s great. 

WARD:  We‘re ending the occupation.  We‘re still there, it‘s only a milestone if we‘re not there. 

HARRIS:  See but it doesn‘t matter, the people who are against the war in Iraq, never consider anything President Bush accomplishments a milestone.  You get Zarqawi, no big deal, whatever it may be, there are no accomplishments as far as they are concerned with the Bush administration.  Nothing is good enough for those who are against us being in Iraq in the first place.  

WARD:  I‘ll give him an accomplishment as soon as he has one we‘ll be happy to let him have it.  

HARRIS:  Oh please.

CARLSON:  Bernie Ward, Heidi, thank you both very much, I appreciate it.  

HARRIS:  Thanks Tucker.

CARLSON:  Well if she hadn‘t already, Cindy Sheehan has officially—and today‘s the day she‘s officially lost her mind.  Talks about her fantasy of killing President Bush in the crib.  Is this really the face of the anti-war movement.  We‘ll discuss that when we come right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Cindy Sheehan goes off the deep end and reveals her fantasies about killing George W. Bush.  Wouldn‘t it be compassionate to start ignoring her?  Plus the politics of “Dancing with the Stars” and boy is it political.  Tom DeLay weighed in yesterday, today a former presidential candidate endorses me.  All that when we come back in 60 seconds.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  It‘s time for a look at today‘s stories that I just don‘t get.  First off, the mother of all anti-war campaigns.  

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

CINDY SHEEHAN:  I as an American and as a mother of a hero pledge to do what I can as a citizen to end the occupation of Iraq.  

(END OF VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  Cindy Sheehan has been a thorn in the side of the Bush administration since she lost her son in Iraq two years ago.  Now this grieving mother turned hard left activist has turned author.  In her upcoming book, “Peace Mom”, Sheehan reveals her son‘s death nearly drove her to suicide.  She also admits she has fantasized about going back in time and murdering George W. Bush when he was a baby, which she said would have prevented the war in Iraq.  Here‘s what I don‘t get.  Cindy Sheehan has obviously left the realm of the sane.  Poor Cindy Sheehan, I‘m not attacking Cindy Sheehan, I‘m just pointing out the obvious.  Cindy Sheehan is bonkers and I don‘t understand why television producers, magazine editors and newspaper reporters and book publishers and all the people who are profiting off Cindy Sheehan don‘t get compassionate for a moment and leave Cindy Sheehan alone and help her get the help she needs, obviously instead of letting her ramble on about murdering George W. Bush when he was a baby.  Come on, it‘s just mean to let Cindy Sheehan talk, please, someone stop her.

Next I really don‘t get a potential new target for ambulance chasers.

(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)

UNIDENTIFIED MALE:  Why does it (INAUDIBLE) it is no paper jam, I swear to God one of these days I just want to kicking this piece of (bleep) out the window.

(END OF VIDEO CLIP)

CARLSON:  The age old battle of man versus the office machine rages on.  This time it‘s over the ubiquitous blackberry, that little electronic gizmo designed to keep employees leashed to their offices.  But their soon may be legal fallout.  Law experts warn that employers could be liable if their workers develop an addiction to the gadgets, that especially applies to the blackberry which researchers note is so addictive, some users now refer to it as the “crackberry.”  Where you would have to be a researcher not to get the sarcasm in the phrase “crackberry.”  It‘s a joke Mr. and Mrs. Researcher and I don‘t get why you don‘t get that.  The other thing I don‘t get, why can‘t people see that at all the bottom of these studies, these research plans is what? Greedy trial lawyers.  The whole point is to enrich the trial bar.  Please, America, stop suing, it only makes the lawyers richer.

And finally, there is a new affirmative action plan at UCLA that needs an explanation.  It seems the university is preparing to shift its admission policy.  The new policy is known as the quote, “holistic model”.  That means applicants are judged not just on their grades and test scores but also on so-called personal factors such as social backgrounds and educational inequities.  Faculty leaders claim the system will improve the university‘s admission process overall.  Critics argue that it‘s being done to boost UCLA‘s shrinking population of black students and that is illegal under California law and it‘s also immoral by the way, to favor one race over another race, period.  Always and everywhere, particularly when government does it.  It‘s deeply unfair.  The average American understands that.  I don‘t care what you call it, holistic affirmative action, whatever.  If you give favoritism to one group while excluding another group, helping one while hurting another, it‘s wrong.  It‘s just plain wrong.  It doesn‘t matter what you call it, it‘s wrong. 

Well how bad are things at the White House these days?  They‘re putting former “American Idol” contestants on the staff.  Yes they are.  Clay Aiken joins the Bush administration.  We‘ll attempt to explain that one when we come right back. 

But before we go to break we wanted to tell you about a great new spot on the worldwide web, it‘s called politics.msnbc.com.  Check it out, you won‘t be disappointed.  We‘ll be right back.

(COMMERCIAL BREAK)

CARLSON:  Welcome back. When you want to know what‘s really happening in the news, there is no substitute for Willie Geist.  So without delay, here he is, Willie Geist.

WILLIE GEIST:  Thanks Tucker.  Here‘s what‘s really happening.  Clay Aiken former one time runner up on American Idol is joining the Bush administration.  The president‘s set to appoint Aiken to the President‘s Committee for People with Intellectual Disabilities.  Tucker as long as they‘re giving away positions to reality show contestants, I think you should be the ambassador to Luxembourg.  Speaking of reality shows, five days away, “Dancing with the Stars” we‘re going to be out in L.A. all week next week, prepping, getting ready.  Five days away.  Are you ready Tucker, I hope you are?

CARLSON:  You can‘t scare me Willie, I‘m ready. 

GEIST:  All right, I won‘t try. Yesterday we showed you Tom DeLay‘s official letter of endorsement for “Dancing with the Stars” contestant Sarah Evans.  Today we fight fire with bigger and better fire.  The Reverend Al Sharpton so believes in Tucker‘s dancing that he has drafted and signed a real letter encouraging all freedom loving Americans to vote for Tucker. It reads, “Dear Friends, I don‘t have to remind you that we are living in trying and uncertain times.  That‘s why now more than ever, we need a strong leader who will stand up for what we believe.  Better yet, we need a leader who will dance for what we believe.  Tucker Carlson is just such a danger, I ask you to join me in supporting Tucker as he competes on the ABC program “Dancing with the Stars.”  The show begins Tuesday, September 12th at 8:00 p.m. eastern time.  Watch Tucker do the Cha Cha and then call in your vote to make sure he advances to the next week‘s show.  You can call as often as you like and remember, voting in celebrity dance contests is not just your right in this country it‘s a privilege.  If you sit back idly and fail to perform your civic duty, lesser dancers could win this competition.  America simply cannot afford that.  Thank you for joining me in this effort.  Sincerely, the Reverend Al Sharpton.”

I won‘t argue with the reverend, you‘ve got my vote Tucker.

CARLSON:  Thank you Willie.  And it‘s all real.  Willie Geist.

GEIST:  All right Tucker, see you tomorrow.

CARLSON:  That‘s our show, thanks for watching, see you here tomorrow.  Up next, “HARDBALL WITH CHRIS”. 

THIS IS A RUSH TRANSCRIPT. THIS COPY MAY NOT BE IN ITS FINAL FORM AND MAY BE UPDATED.

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