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tv   The Kelly File  FOX News  October 10, 2014 9:00pm-10:01pm PDT

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stops here because we're looking out for you and you and you, but not you. you over there, we're not looking out for you. welcome to a "the kelly file" special. a question of leadership. over the last two weeks we have witnessed a remarkable moment in the oak of the obama presidency as the president's former cia director and defense secretary gives a series of interviews that raise serious questions about the president's foreign policy and his leadership. all this in the face of a major crisis in the middle east. democrat leon panetta in a new autobiography is suggesting the president has "lost his way." and that he "refuses to engage people, bringing the country to
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a point where we are governing by crisis." whether in syria we squandered an opportunity to arm syrian rebels before they were infiltrated to al qaeda. and whether we created the very vacuum known as isis where we withdrew all american troops in iraq over the recommendations of our generals. then there's benghazi where secretary panetta says the much-disputed talking points on exactly what happened that night were "not on point" and to make his point, this respected leader who worked for two democratic administrations has engaged in a nonstop series of eye opening sit-downs. here is a brief sample. >> in retrospect now was not arming the rebels at that time a mistake? >> i think that would have helped. and i think in part we paid a price for not doing that in what we see happening with isis. >> how big a threat should americans view it as being? >> i think it's a significant
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threat. >> now, president obama has ruled out boots on the ground. whether or not that turns out to be necessary, do you think it's unwise to rule out options at this point in a conflict like this? >> i always feel that presidents as commander in chief ought to keep all of your options on the table. >> by not leaving u.s. troops in iraq, president obama committed a colossal blunder, did he not? >> there's no question that not maintaining a true presence in iraq so that we could continue the momentum towards trying to secure that country and try to hope that it could govern itself in the right way i think was a mistake. >> have you looked him in the eye and you said, i, leon panetta, secretary of defense -- and i'm assume mrs. clinton did the same thing, i hillary clinton secretary of state and assuming the cia did the same thing. >> exactly. >> all three looked barack obama
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in the eye like i'm looking you in the eye right now and said you have to keep forces there. and he said, well -- >> bill, just to keep the record straight here. i think the president did support providing that $10,000 -- 10,000 troop presence in iraq. and supported cia operations. supported the diplomatic operations we wanted to continue. the real issue was how hard did he fight? >> he didn't fight hard at all. >> that's the outrage. >> joining me now general richard myers, former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. he is retired now. general, great to see you. thank you very much for being here with us. >> thank you, megyn. >> when bill o'reilly asked leon panetta whether he was worried right now about the state of the country, about our future plans in the middle east, he said he is. he is worried. should we all be worried about the leadership in the white
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house right now in your opinion? >> well first of all, i've had a chance to work with mr. panetta for a brief few months. and he is of course one of our most thoughtful and wisest leaders on national security. so i think when he says things that we ought to listen. on the other hand instead of, i think, it is a real tendency to pile on these comments and others. and what we have to do is kind of look forward and say, okay, what are we going to do going forward? we know we have this really bad threat in its current manifestation is called isis. but the same extremist threat we've known about since before 9/11. so how are we going to deal with this in a meaningful way so we don't keep getting surprised by new mutations. >> here's what i'm asking, this isn't to get you to be political, which you aren't. but when i listen to leon panetta, he sounds scared. he sounds scared whether or not we have somebody in the white house who will do the things need to keep us safe.
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it seems like he's saying this is why i wrote the book, because i'm trying to pressure him to act on what i, leon panetta, believe to be his courage. if only he will act on it. and do you have similar concerns? >> i guess what i'm concerned about, and some of the words the president has said are actually fairly comforting when he talks about a comprehensive strategy and so forth. at the same time, you know, we're not as ambiguous about what we might do about these things. we kind of show all our cards at the beginning of the game. and these sorts of situations where you have lots of options, ambiguity is your friend when you're trying to confront an adversary such as isis. so i think -- i guess what i would say, i think we need a lot more work to develop this comprehensive strategy. and i don't think we ought to rule things -- as a military person, i mean, all those options ought to be at least on the table for a while. some of them can be not high probability of ever happening,
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but we shouldn't tell our adversary that. we should proceed like this as a real danger to the united states of america and to our friends and allies, which it is. >> the president has been criticized for ignoring his generals, overruling his generals repeatedly. he's done that time and time again. that's fact. but as somebody who was the chairman of the joint chiefs of staff, are people being too hard on him in this regard? >> fundamental to our democracy and culture and laws is the fact we have civilian control of the military. it's the military's role to provide their best military advice. to do that vigorously and in private. then the president gets to decide. but he's going to get diplomatic advice, economic advice, all these things coming together. so i think that's been overhyped, the fact that in my conversations with folks that have replaced me back is that the president does listen. but in the end it's his call. >> uh-huh. so now we're stuck with this, for however we got here we're stuck with this terror army that seems to be on the rise and is not getting destroyed from what
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it appears by these air strikes. first let me ask you about the air strike strategy and then and you what we really need to do. do you think the air strikes are working? >> i think they're working. but i think in the end, you know, is it going to be air strikes enough? in fact, i would opine that it's not just air strikes that won't be enough, but military force won't be enough. there's going to be lots of other actions. for instance, in baghdad you have to have a good government in baghdad. so we need diplomatic engagement with the new government of baghdad to get them to provide the kind of leadership they need to provide inside that country. no, i don't think air strikes are going to be sufficient. but in iraq you have an iraqi army that's been well-trained that if properly led could help with this problem and maybe extinguish isis inside iraq. >> but they're not doing it. properly led? who's going to lead them? we've been trying. they put down their arms and ran when isis came in. >> yeah, they did. and that was of course under -- that was remnants of maliki regime there in baghdad where
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there was no incentive for those troops in northern iraq to follow somebody who was not trying to bring the country together. so that's what's needed. we need strong diplomacy, strong consultation in baghdad. this isn't something that's going to turn around overnight, by the way. you made that point, megyn, a minute ago. it's going to take considerable time. but that, i think, is the best hope in iraq. syria's a different matter. >> do you think now -- we've been having this debate, but do you have a feeling on foreign policy, the best foreign policy to keep us safe? is it something more robust where america leads and more interventionalist? is it something -- do we need to let the more obama foreign policy of let's not be as interventionalist, keep more to ourselves, let's show the world that we don't want to interfere in their business everywhere it may be happening. does that need more time to play out? or do we have a pronouncement on
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whether that will keep us safe or will not? >> megyn, i think the world needs leadership in these kinds of situations. and if it's not the u.s., then where is that leadership coming from? and so the u.n. does a lot of wonderful things, but leadership in these kind of issues is not their strong suit. syria would be the first example that i think of. it's not going to be nato. nato has got a lot of internal issues. they have budget problems. and anything that happens good in nato is usually because of u.s. leadership or partnership with our allies there. so where's the leadership going to come from? and i think those countries that have the capability, the means, the intellectual thought processes and so forth, they ought to lead. and that's the united states. we do it for our own national interests. we don't do it just to be good guys around the world. but we do it for our own national interests. and i think we have vital national interest in helping exterminate this extremist movement that's been going on
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now for a long time. and again, the current mutation is isis. >> general richard myers, thank you very much, sir. former chairman of the joint chiefs of staff. >> thanks, megyn. >> all the best. mr. panetta also says the problems with the presidency goes way beyond his policies. there are also questions about courage and character. up next, retired four-star general jack keane responds to that. plus, new revelations from the former defense secretary are leading to new questions about what happened in benghazi. we'll speak with one of the congressmen leading that investigation just ahead. >> you on the night of the attack say -- you told president obama you believed it was not a spontaneous attack. it was a terror attack. is that correct?
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welcome back to our "the kelly file" special. for days former obama administration defense secretary leon panetta has detailed the
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policy failures that contributed to our current crisis in the middle east in his view. but former secretary panetta also argues that part of the problem has to do with the quality and character of the president's leadership. >> look, president obama has been a strong leader. he made a very tough decision with regards to the bin laden raid. and it was a risky decision. but he made the right decision. that doesn't mean that we shouldn't talk or disagree about certain elements of the leadership. >> i'm seeing a president, all right, from your eyes, former cia chief, former defense secretary, who is either incapable or doesn't understand the dangers the united states faces. that's the message i'm getting from you. >> i think this president is smart enough to understand the dangers. the real question is can he translate that into the kind of action that will help protect this country? >> give me a straight answer. do our enemies throughout the world fear us?
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>> i think they're getting a mixed message as to whether or not the united states will stand by its word. >> would i be wrong and a mean guy to say i don't believe barack obama has the sympttomacr the fight? >> i'm a guy who believes barack obama by virtue of what i've seen in the time i was there has the guts to do the right thing. the real question is will he make the decision to do it? >> the real couple important decisions, red line and the other not to go ahead with the attack. do you think that was damaging to the president's leadership around the world? >> i think the credibility of a commander in chief is whether or not when you say something you stand by it. i mean, when you're dealing with a pretty rough world and dealing with the threats that we face in this kind of difficult world, the strength of the united states is that we say what we intend to do and we do it. >> we're in decline right now. >> i think right now -- >> we're in decline.
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>> we govern either by leadership or crisis. and today we are largely governing by crisis. >> general jack keane is chairman of the institute for the study of war, a retired four-star general and former army vice chief of staff as well as a fox news military analyst. general, good to see you. that's just damning when you hear it like that. he's smart enough to understand the dangers. he has the guts to do the right thing. the big question is, will he? >> he's actually challenging america's leadership. he's challenging the president's leadership here. i mean, he knows for a fact when america's leadership is strong in the world, the world is a more secure and stable place. and when it's indecisive, when it's inconsistent, when it's paralyzed by the fear as demonstrated here, the world is a more dangerous place. adversaries are encouraged and our friends become more timid. this man, secretary panetta, is afraid of what the consequences are of weak american leadership. i'm convinced that's why he's talking as frequently as he is.
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>> because you know what a democrat he is, how loyal he is, to hear him say these things is equivalent of administration figure jumping up and down trying to alert the world to something for him to be as open as he's being. he's not going to just come out and bash the president. he's trying to call our attention to something. but the point -- and he says it's because he wants to get the president to change course in the last two years. do you see any evidence that that will work? >> i don't believe that's going to happen at all. we have a pattern here. we have a president that looks at the united states and the world and he sees a different role for america. we have a different ideology here that he is using to drive this country. and he's pulled back from the world. and the fact of the matter is our adversaries are taking advantage of it and we're talking about it every single day as isis is grabbing more land, as the russians are taking territory themselves and as china is seeking domination of the western pacific. >> what do you make of general
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meyers say president obama does listen to the generals. >> i think he does listen to the generals, but then he rejects their recommendations. he's very good at listening. but he doesn't agree. and he is systemically and consistently rejected every major proposal they've made since 2009. that is an incredible pattern of decision making. >> if he's so anti-military as bob gates suggested in his book, he has a fundamental distrust of the military, then why does he launch this war? why is he doing any air strikes in syria? why didn't he just stay the course and say i'm not doing it? this is somebody else's fight. i was elected to end wars as i've said repeatedly. let somebody else deal with this problem. >> he cannot. because u.s. vital interests are being crushed by isis in the middle east and also the the implication of threat to the american people's security here at home. those two things brought him to the decision to do something. it appears that that decision based on what we know now after a couple of months is not sufficient. >> and so we're a little bit pregnant.
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we're sort of doing some air strikes but not enough. even though the american military, the best and greatest military in the world is involved we can't stop isis from taking kobani. they're continuing their gains. so will he be forced to up the ante? will he be forced to increase air strikes at a minimum or perhaps at at least some more special forces on the ground, which you said we ought to be doing the night the president made his remarks on september 10th. >> i think he will. isis has forced his hand to take the actions he is doing. and isis is going to force his hand to take more actions. the problem is that we're doing this incrementally. it drives up casualties, it protracts the war. and as you protract the war you lose political support for it. >> you told him that before. you've told -- you and the other generals have told me this have argued to him that if he withdraw troops from iraq the casualty rate would go up. that doing a lot of the things he's done will drive up the casualty rate. that doesn't seem to win the argument with him. >> it does not resonate, that's
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a fact. but i do believe to go back to your premise, i do believe that isis will force him to do more. sadly, it's not going to be decisive until our hand is truly forced and we have to put in ground troops to change -- >> what do you think is going on there, general jack keane? do you think he is just this risk averse? what is it that's driving what leon panetta calls a lack of leadership? >> well, i do believe he does get paralyzed by the fear of failure. i think it's consistent throughout his presidency. i mean, he delayed the strike on bin laden for months worrying about the fact something would go wrong. the fact of the matter is that decision that everybody applaud, what president would not make that decision based on the information that they had available to them? the fact of the matter is that's the issue. and the second issue is america's role in the world. he just believes we should be less engaged. >> uh-huh. it's interesting to hear your
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perspective. you're obviously a leader yourself. and you've been around some of our best and brightest leaders. always great to get your perspective, sir. great to have you here. >> good to see you, megyn. >> remarkable, eye opening and powerful, what kind of attention did they get across mainstream media? we'll kid: hey dad, who was that man? dad: he's our broker. he helps looks after all our money.
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blueprint for great schools. torlakson's blueprint outlines how investing in our schools will reduce class sizes, bring back music and art, and provide a well-rounded education. and torlakson's plan calls for more parental involvement. spending decisions about our education dollars should be made by parents and teachers, not by politicians. tell tom torlakson to keep fighting for a plan that invests in our public schools. they're the ones who say, you know, he appointed you to two of the highest positions that this country has to offer. just wait until he's out of office before criticizing. >> you know what? it's exactly because i am very loyal to this president and because i want him to succeed that i think it's important to raise these issues now. >> i loved your last question. because some people say what about loyalty to the president, the question you raise.
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>> interesting concept to come out now. >> we have three books, hillary clinton, bob gates and leon panetta. >> yeah. and that's why a reminder how much power the president of the united states has. at the end of the day he gets to make the decision. >> that's a clip from "cbs morning news" questioning former secretary of defense leon panetta's loyalty to president obama over his autobiography. that of course criticizes the president's foreign policy and his leadership. a stark difference from how some of the mainstream media covered other critical books by washington insiders. president of the media research center has been tracking all this. brent, good to see you. first of all, let's talk about how the mainstream media has covered mr. panetta's book and the revelations in it? >> shockingly they haven't. they got a story on cbs on "60 minutes." "cbs nightly news" did a story,
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"today" did an interview, and, megyn, that's it. abc news has yet to interview this man about this book or do a story about this book. for so many other scandals involved in this administration, they act like it didn't happen. this is a bombshell. whether you agree or not, it's irrelevant. it's a bombshell when the secretary of defense says the president has completely screwed up foreign policy. so not only are they not covering it, but then the whisper campaign and you showed some of the clips that some people say, well, that's not some people saying this, reporters themselves saying this talking among each other. what they're questioning is his loyalty. >> well, charlie was right, some people do say -- bill burton came out, charlie rose was right. bill burton has come out and called him small and petty, joe biden came out and said the time to write a book is not while the guy's in office. both of those two guys on the other hand love, love, loved it when scott mcclellan, the bush secretary came out and wrote a
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critical book about his boss. charlie rose has substantial basis to say what he said. but the question is whether the media and those now criticizing leon panetta had the same outrage when mcclellan did it to bush. >> wait. wait, megyn, it's a double standard. when scott mcclellan came out with a book attacking bush's policy, it was called a bombshell. when paul o'neil came out with a book, a scathing book, where he called george bush a blind man in a room full of deaf people, which is much harder than anything panetta said. think about this. he got 17 times more coverage. and they all called him things like a straight shooter. nobody criticized him for that. that's what happens when you cover a republican. >> is there any difference because the iraq war -- i mean, there's no question it was a much huger commitment at least at the time the book came out and the criticism came. and there were no weapons of mass destruction and so on
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versus now, the point in time we are in leon panetta's, you know, distance from his leaving office to what's happening overseas right now. >> and, you know, megyn, i might argue the other way around. look at what we're looking at? we're looking at the biggest terror army in the history of the world right in front of us and everybody's been saying where did they come from? now you have the secretary of defense saying we warned the president about this and they did nothing. so it's a huge story any way you look at it. >> wow. it's amazing there's been no coverage especially on abc. brent, good to see you. as this debate over leadership plays out this week, new polls suggest the president's problems could be a big issue in the midterms ahead. chris stirewalt and lanny davis next on that. plus, is secretary panetta sitting on a benghazi bombshell? see why there are new calls for him to testify under oath just ahead. >> we were concerned that the consulate there was in trouble. and it was based on that the
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president then said let's try to do everything we can. >> did you use the word terror attack? back to
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"the kelly file." questions raised in leon panetta's new book on president obama's leadership put the white house on defense. some say the last place it needs to be when midterms are less than a month away. when it comes to 2014, democrats running for the senate have been running away from the president. take a look at these campaign ads. these are all democrats. >> i'm not barack obama. i disagree with him on guns, coal and the epa. >> the administration's policies are simply wrong when it comes to oil and gas production in this nation. >> i oppose president obama's gun control legislation. nothing in the obama plan would have prevented tragedies like newtown. >> i'll make sure president obama gets the message.
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>> chris stirewalt is our fox news digital politics editor. >> good lord. >> what? >> yeah. i don't even know that guy. allison lundergren grimes, the one with the shotgun, she got him like she was peter denying jesus. they had her in front of the editorial board for the courier journal out there. they said did you vote for him? >> oh, we have it. let's just show the viewers what you're talking about. >> amazing. >> let's show a sample of that. watch this. >> did you vote for president obama in 2008 and 2012? >> you know, this election isn't about the president. it's about making sure we put kentucky back to work. i was actually in '08 a delegate for hillary clinton. >> it went on and on. >> i did not have electoral
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relations with that man, barack obama. and she did. she was a delegate for him in 2012. now, there's something very telling in this. and what's telling is the party's already moved onto 2016. allison lundergren grimes had hillary announce after that deback l she was coming in -- democrats want to get away from barack obama. and they, like leon panetta, are hoping very much that hillary clinton will take the party out of this malaise and into an era of good feelings in 2016. >> but what happened? president obama didn't make any bones about the fact he wanted to end these wars, get us out of iraq, out of afghanistan, he was going to run a different policy towards the middle east. he did exactly what he said he was going to do and now the democrats are like i don't agree with him, look how much i disagree with him. >> what did he do to his base? he did the thing he said he wouldn't do and started bombing
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countries. he's down to the point basically he's got gwyneth paltrow and whomever else, who doesn't know essentially, still swooning -- >> about how handsome he is. >> dreamy. i could faint. it happens to me all the time everywhere i go. but the deal is he lost his base. he became bush-like. he betrayed them. that's why he's throwing out this crazy stuff we're going to close gitmo even if it's illegal. we're going to appoint anybody we want to as attorney general. all of this crazytown stuff he's saying because the base is gone and they're not coming out. >> lost the base by doing that, where is the reciprocal support from the democrat hawks and the republicans who probably like the air strikes and so on. maybe they want him to do more, but they should be at least rewarding him in the polls for doing something. >> because leon panetta stripped him naked and left him standing in the town square. there's no defense. because what leon panetta said,
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and you guys were talking about it before, he made a character attack on the president. he said the president does not have the character to carry this out and will not do it. when bill o'reilly is so telling that conversation, that back and forth, what panetta was saying, he was basically saying through gritted teeth was this guy is not in it. he does not have the heart for it. he is not a leader. it's not going to work. and if you have a voice that among neoconservatives and hawkish democrats, in so far as they're two different groups, you have a voice trusted by these people that says do not under any circumstances -- real name of leon panetta's book should be, do not trust barack obama whatever you do. that being said, nobody's going to back him when it comes time to get in the fight. so he's stuck in between two places and he can't get home and he can't get ahead. >> and that explains why we saw this week that 53% of the american public now say this is a "failed presidency." chris, good to see you. >> you bet. joining me now with more, lanny davis, former special
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council to president clinton and author of the book "crisis tales." let's pick up with that. it do you believe this is a play by leon panetta to prop uphill lair clinton who's already created some daylight between herself and the president on foreign policy? >> no, i think he -- i worked with him briefly at the white house. he's an honest man speaking his mind. but i think the prior observer had a bit of a partisan interpretation to this whole thing. first of all, a majority of liberal democrats support the bombing of isis without being involved in a ground war. as to most americans. so i don't know where he gets judgments about democratic base. i don't think he's a member of the democratic base. secondly, it's easy in hindsight to say that president obama should have supported this syrian moderate opposition at the time that leon panetta urged him to as did secretary of state clinton. but even secretary of state clinton said she's not even sure that would have made a difference. and now the president is supporting the syrian moderate
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opposition. >> well, it's a very different day. >> and the base of the party is supporting his policy. so he is very low in approval ratings. when harry truman left office he had 28% approval rating. history's judged him very well. democrats i would suggest don't do themselves any good by running away or not admitting who you voted for or saying all of a sudden you oppose them. >> it's so dishonest. does allison lundergren grimes want us to believe she didn't vote for barack obama? why not just own it? it's so disingenuous. >> well, i would do more than that. she's a great candidate. i support her. but if i were advising her, i would say in kentucky it's one of the few states in the country where obamacare has a positive approval because it's worked so well. it's covered uninsured people. it's guaranteed that preexisting conditions aren't going to cost you. >> so throw your arms around it.
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embrace it. >> so why not support -- >> let me ask you this. leon panetta seems to be taking a genuine shot at the president's leadership. do you think he has a point at all there? >> well, i certainly think that there is a point. and i have said it myself that president obama has not been a great communicator. his communication shop has failed to get out in front of stories even on explaining isis. it took a long time for him to depart from the jayvee to the varsity that isis is a threat to our homeland and that's why the democratic party base supports the bombing and obliteration of isis. but he is slow on communicating his policies. and i think his disapproval ratings have gone up because there's a great gap, for example, on the things people like about obamacare. he has not been out there communicating that clearly. >> lanny davis, always good to see you, sir. >> thank you.
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thank you, megyn. up next, new revelations from mr. panetta's memoir now sparking new calls for him to testify under oath on the 2012 benghazi attack. congressman jason chaffetz joins us now. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance. everybody knows that. well, did you know certain cartoon characters should never have an energy drink? action! blah-becht-blah- blublublub-blah!!!
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revelations from his memoir that could impact the ongoing benghazi investigation. in his recent interviews including with our own bill o'reilly, the former defense secretary calls into question the initial reports that this attack in benghazi came from a group of protesters. >> we told the president that there is an attack that's going on, that terrorists are involved in the attack. >> okay. let me stop you there. >> -- and that as a result we have to respond to it. >> fine. >> told him that terrorists were involved in this attack. but when bill asked president obama back in february whether mr. panetta had told him that this was a terrorist attack, here's what the president said. >> did he tell you, secretary panetta, it was a terrorist attack? >> no. what he told me was there was an attack upon our compound. >> he didn't use the word terror? >> you know, in the heat of the mome moment, bill, what folks are focused on is what's happening on the ground, do we have eyes on it, how can we make sure our
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folks are safe? >> i just want to get this on record. did he tell you it was a terror attack? >> bill, i'm telling you what he said -- >> joining me now utah congressman jason chaffetz. he's been urging the white house to give full disclosure about the benghazi attack. congressman, good to see you tonight. so there seems to be a disparity between how leon panetta is describing the administration and how -- describing it. >> this is not an insignificant piece of information. the white house and their whole operation wanted everybody to believe this was a youtube video and people walking by and got out of control. that's different than terrorists. one of the big mysteries we have is where was the president? what was he doing during that whole attack? what were the orders he gave? so to hear the secretary of defense say that there was a terrorist attack involved, that begs a whole lot of questions. >> so the president describes it differently than the way leon panetta described it. and then the president of course for weeks refused to say that it
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was a terrorist attack. the most he said it was an act of terror the day after in the rose garden. but then went on for weeks thereafter to decline to say that it was a terrorist attack. what does all of this show us? >> well, remember the context. this was five days after the democratic national convention where he was out there famously saying, you know, that the terrorists were on the run, that al qaeda was on the run and they were decimating -- it was the heat of the election. and they went on for weeks. and they perpetuated this myth, the thing that was never ever true. and then for the secretary of defense, i do think that leon panetta must come before the select committee. let him go before trae gowdy. we're inching there, but we'll get closer and closer to the truth about how this administration misled the world and the american people. >> what do you find relevant to the benghazi select committee
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that's investigating this issue? >> i think it still begs a lot of questions. for instance, i'm not aware of any united states military asset outside of libya that was ordered to go into benghazi and engage in the fight. and if you recall in realtime when this happened, benghazi happened, the secretary of defense, it took him a few days to get out there but then said, well, you don't put your military in harm's way without knowing what's going on. the military just went nuts about this. days later he said, well, we couldn't have gotten there in time. i beg to differ. i think they could have gotten there in time. i don't think they tried to engage in that fight. and that's why there's more questions than ever even after the book and the interview. >> have you had the chance to interview leon panetta yet? >> no. no. never been available. it's been a big stiff arm for the oversight committee and others to try to get to the bottom of this information. >> pretty extraordinary that you haven't gotten access to him, but he writes a book speaking to benghazi. do you think he'll come before you now now that he's been so vocal about it with bill o'reilly and with a publisher?
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>> well, i'm not on the select committee, but i guarantee you that trae gowdy, he knows how to do this, the right person, the right temperment, i don't know how you go through this without bringing leon panetta before you. he's the secretary of defense when this is happening. >> there was some testimony about, you know, mr. panetta -- do we have the sound bite where he is responding to the allegations about an alleged standdown order? do we have that sound bite? all right. let's play it. >> i think if in fact there was a 30-minute delay, i think that it is important for the congressional committee to look into that and determine what happened. >> so he's talking about a 30-minute delay in dispatching the team that would wind up at the original compound to perform a rescue mission. he's now suggesting that congress needs to look into the matter. >> i sat in the room with colonel gibson, who's a very patriotic person, and he told us point-blank that, yes, they were told to do that.
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now, the military will say standdown is very technical term. it means, you can basically standdown and go to the movies. they were told to delay. why did that delay happen? we've been told that no assets were ever delayed in moving forward, but i have heard colonel gibson in person answering my question this did happen, megyn. and for the secretary of defense to now back us up and say the congressional committee, the select committee and trae gowdy need to get after that, it does signal there's a lot more there than they ever would have let on beforehand. >> it's widely criticized especially by many democrats saying overkill, pointless, political. and now you basically have the former secretary of defense, the former cia chief who's a democrat saying more investigation is needed. i got to run, congressman chaffetz, good to see you, sir. >> thanks, megyn. former secretary panetta said the president made bad calls on both syria and
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welcome back. secretary panetta has questioned both policies and some leadership coming from our commander in chief. but some of panetta's critics say his ideas would have been just as bad, meaning mr. panetta's, if not worse. chairman of, a veteran of the iraq war. great to see you. thank you for being here. mr. panetta is taking some incoming of his own for his criticisms. and you are one of the people who think he should be careful before throwing these stones in a glass house. explain. >> well, i could care less that he wrote the book. to be frankly honest, i served him the first time in iraq in 2003. when i came back in 2004 i was very vocal there was no weapons of mass destruction in iraq. you have to remember al nusra,
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the al qaeda brand in syria that killed u.s. troops in iraq was a part of isis until just march of this year. so i really take issue with leon panetta going out there. and to be frankly honest with hillary clinton as well saying we should have given weapons to free syrian army last year. >> what about the vacuum left in iraq? that's the allegation from panetta and others that we never should have withdrawn all those troops. >> well, i was one of the last advisors in iraq, i was one of the last advisors out of northern iraq where isis now controls the base i was on. the truth is we left iraq because we didn't have immunity for u.s. troops. >> i know. but why didn't we get the immunity? >> well because the iranians control iraq. that's what happens when you create democracies in the middle east. the iranians are in control of maliki. >> you know it had nothing to do with the fact we were offering too few troops. >> i don't believe that to be the case as one of the last people there. >> so you are disagreeing with virtually all of the generals who say that we never should have taken all the troops out of
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iraq. you disagree with all the generals who have said that left a vacuum, that left an opportunity for isis to grow and fester and exploit. >> it's not exactly accurate. i mean, the issue in iraq is political. we built a democracy. when we build democracies, do we get the result that we want? does democracy make peace? are there liberal democratic for peace theorists in the world have they been disproved and i believe they have. >> do you believe the president has made any mistakes with his respect to foreign policy in iraq and syria then? >> sure. responsible not because of u.s. forces left but because of the muddled policy in syria. i mean, this idea that we have some type of moderate group that we can support in syria's completely ridiculous at this point. >> that's what the president said himself before reversing. said himself before reversing. sir, good to see you. you pay your auto insurance premium every month on the dot. you're like the poster child for paying on time. and then one day you tap the bumper of a station wagon.
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thanks for watching our "the kelly file" special. follow me on twitte twitter @megynkelly. i'm megyn kelly. live from america's news headquarters, i'm robert gray. tensions rising again in ferguson, missouri, where a black teen was shot to death bay white cop in august.
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hundreds of protesters gathering outside the police department, standing face to face with police in riot gear. the demonstrators are chanting, but so far, there's no word of any arrests. they're calling on prosecutors to charge officer darren wilson in the august 9th death of 18-year-old michael brown. the ebola breakout has now killed more than 4,000 people in west africa, that's according to the world health organization. most of the deaths were in liberia, sierra leone, and guinea. the virus causing fears here in the u.s. where a man just died after traveling from liberia. dr. kent brantly, american doctor survived saying the focus should not be on fear here. i'm robert gray, "hannity" starts right now. ." welcome to this very special "hannity" conversation. radical islam in america. we were promised that al qaeda was on the run, we were told


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