And just like that, he’s caved.
Not too long after Fox News personality Geraldo Rivera tore into “Fox & Friends” host Brian Kilmeade early Friday morning over his support of the drone strike that eliminated Iranian general Qasem Soleimani, the mustachioed trash-talker apologized, after which the two returned to arguing as usual, hilariously enough.
“First, let me say that I love you, I admire you, I have tremendous respect for you,” his remorseful apology began later that morning on Fox News Radio’s “The Brian Kilmeade Show.”
He then explained how his wife had convinced him that it wasn’t proper for him to yell at Kilmeade the way normal Americans yell at CNN’s Jim Acosta:
“My wife, Erica, called and said I was mean in speaking with you on ‘Fox & Friends.’ And she said the first thing you do when you talk to Brian or you see him next is apologize.”
Next came the actual apology.
(Source: Fox News Radio’s “The Brian Kilmeade Show”)
“I apologize,” he said. “You know I didn’t mean anything personally. You know I’m your biggest fan in this building and in this town. I think you really have a total grasp on issues that is profoundly securing, you know, reaffirming, reassuring for us.”
“I just disagree with you on this issue of killing Soleimani. I disagree with what the president did. I think that it’s, you know, I used the metaphor or was it an analogy, I get them mixed up — that we were being stung by bees and we killed the queen bee. The hive is now going in every which way, direction. We’ve got to go swat everything now. It’s a lot more complicated. It’s going to feel good for today, but wait until next week.”
In short, while he still maintains his opposition to President Donald Trump’s elimination of Soleimani, he admits that his disagreement in opinion with Kilmeade didn’t warrant him acting like angry climate change zealot Greta Thunberg.
“Geraldo, no problem,” Kilmeade promptly replied, accepting Rivera’s apology. “I know it’s never personal. We had an argument on the air. If you missed on FOX & Friends this morning, which I don’t know why you would ever miss the show. Geraldo agrees with Tulsi Gabbard and says that the American forces should not have taken out Soleimani.”
Gabbard isn’t the only Democrat opposed to the strike.
? BizPac Review News ?
? Dem Sen warns of war, blasts Trump for going rogue with Iran days after ripping him for rendering America ‘impotent’ https://t.co/ZXMbT4OyBN
— ❌nuuzfeed (@nuuzfeed) January 3, 2020
The host then outlined for the audience those points that the two — he and Rivera — do agree on.
“We both agree on this: That he has more blood on his hands than probably any other Iranian,” he said. “[The] grand ayatollah doesn’t plot or plan military tactics. This guy does. Number two, we also agree on this: He’s not an inspirational leader; he’s a military strategist, and he’s also a consolidator of militias.”
“He actually was advising Vladimir Putin on how best to use Russian forces in Syria. … If you take out a quarterback who’s a superstar quarterback on a team, don’t expect the rest of the team to play as well. And don’t say, ‘Well I got another quarterback.’ No, no. This guy is tough to replace. He doesn’t sit in a cave and jot down psalms.”
Iranian Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei announced an ostensible replacement for Soleimani late Friday, spurring critics of the president’s drone strike to argue that the strike had been pointless, given as the new guy could theoretically just pick up where he’d left off. But as noted by Kilmeade, things aren’t that easy.
Rivera replied by offering his agreement.
“I absolutely agree with your assessment of the importance of Soleimani,” he said. “I think he … I compare this death to [deceased ISIS leader Abu Bakr] al-Baghdadi and Osama bin Laden. I think it’s that big of a deal.”
“And you supported those two deaths?” Kilmeade then jumped in to ask.
“I absolutely did,” Rivera replied.
And yet only hours earlier, he’d unleashed a torrent of fury on his friend and colleague for daring to support Soleimani’s death. Watch the original interaction below:
(Source: Fox News)
“Don’t for a minute start cheering this on!” Rivera asserted in anger as Kilmeade expressed his support for the strike. “What you have done, what we have done, we have unleashed …”
“I will cheer it on,” Kilmeade interjected. “I am elated.”
“Then you, like Lindsey Graham, have never met a war you didn’t like!” Geraldo retorted, referring to the South Carolina Republican senator who’s defended the drone strike on the basis that “the price of killing and injuring Americans has just gone up drastically.”
“That is not true,” Kilmeade shot back. “And don’t even say that!”
The argument grew even more heated later as the “Fox & Friends” co-host accused Rivera of “making excuses for Iran.”
“DAMN IT! I’m not making excuses for them! That’s absolute baloney!” Rivera roared in anger as he slammed his desk.
“Your arrogance is exactly what’s wrong with the region,” he then yelled. “You’re not a frontline fighter that has to go back into Iraq again. You want Americans back in Iraq. I was there when they were getting killed, five, six, seven a day… This is a fraught decision that will have implications far beyond the celebratory moment of taking out the terrorist.”
Despite Rivera’s apology, he and Kilmeade wound up continuing their radio discussion later Friday morning by arguing again — albeit without any yelling.
Click here to watch the rest of the discussion.
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