Do you remember when the American left recently launched its new era of political civility? Neither does Juan Williams. Fox News political analyst Juan Williams may not be commonly mistaken for a calm, well-reasoned and persuasive communicator, but at least he has provided a somewhat tempered voice. His comments after the Osama bin Laden raid, however, suddenly make the birthers and truthers seem like pillars of rationality by comparison.
On "Fox News Sunday" with Chris Wallace, Mr. Williams accused the president of murder and American intelligence operatives of barbaric torture. At first glance, these comments may seem par for the course for today's Democrats - after all, they've been hurling these sorts of scurrilous charges at former President George W. Bush and former Vice President Dick Cheney for years - so perhaps it shouldn't come as too much of a surprise. Still, the intellectual bankruptcy of his words showcases the conflicting and outright dishonest approach of the Democrats toward the global war on terror.
"To somehow say that it's because we were engaged in enhanced interrogation and that led - and it's a very, very uncertain path that it leads directly to the murder of Osama bin Laden - it seems to me petty and it seems to me to try, an attempt to try to diminish President Obama's accomplishment," Mr. Williams said.
Murder? Consider for a moment how profound the psychological conflict must be for Mr. Williams. His fawning adoration for this president leads him to believe that even "murder" is an "accomplishment" so long as it is performed by Mr. Obama. Still, an accusation of murder, particularly against a president, is a serious matter and should be treated as such. It should either end the career of the president or the person falsely accusing him.
We might expect this sort of moral contortion from discredited leftists like filmmaker Michael Moore or the dwindling television pundit Keith Olbermann, but Juan Williams is a veteran journalist working for the leader in cable news. If anyone understands that words have meanings, it should be Mr. Williams. If he cannot provide a reasonable liberal voice, then who can?
Mr. Williams himself may be "very, very uncertain" that enhanced interrogation, including waterboarding, led to the Navy SEAL raid on bin Laden's lair, but those in the know are not. In 2006, CIA Director Michael V. Hayden said that fully half of America's knowledge of the inner workings of al Qaeda came from these methods. Current CIA Director Leon E. Panetta, when asked whether waterboarding contributed to the raid, unequivocally answered, "That's correct."
It is likely that Mr. Williams was fully aware that his underlying claim was false because he immediately shifted from saying, "it didn't help" to "it wasn't worth it." The latter refutes the former. But even that wasn't enough for Mr. Williams. He wasn't satisfied to simply accuse the president of - and then, strangely, adore him for - murder. He went on to smear the CIA operatives who thanklessly served our nation.
"You know what? So what if we got some information by means of torturing people. As President Obama [said] ... it's not in our values to pull out people's teeth and eyeballs."
Yes, Juan Williams actually said that. His baseless and appalling clear implication is that American operatives have tortured detainees in the most barbaric of ways. If Mr. Williams would like to know what real torture is - and if he can stomach it - he should Google "Islamic beheadings." There he will find ample evidence of pure evil on this earth. Countless beheadings. Burned and mutilated bodies. Severed arms and legs stacked like meat in a market. Young children being taught and actually performing beheadings themselves.
Let's be clear: American CIA interrogators poured water onto the faces of terrorists precisely to stop this modern-day atrocity. It is simply outrageous and unacceptable that Juan Williams or any other smear merchant would poison our nation's dialogue and purposefully confuse the actions of patriotic CIA operatives with those of radical Islamists in a transparent attempt to score political points. If Mr. Williams cannot immediately provide evidence that corroborates his heart-stopping implications of CIA agents pulling out detainees' teeth and eyeballs, then the "fair and balanced" news outlet should at least demand he apologize.
What's more, Obama administration Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. should immediately close the ongoing criminal investigation he has launched against the CIA operatives who were willing to retrieve the information that delivered the world's most wanted terrorist. These patriots deserve medals of heroism, not threats of prison time.
Dr. Milton R. Wolf, a Washington Times columnist, is a board-certified diagnostic radiologist and President Obama's cousin. He blogs at miltonwolf.com.