Megyn Kelly is not a stupid woman. So it’s hard to believe that she would have misinterpreted what Pelosi said on CNN about Hamas and why the Qataris may be helpful in brokering a peace deal between Israel and the Palestinians. But Kelly was more interested in attacking Pelosi with a distortion than in discussing the substance of Pelosi's words.
Here’s what Pelosi actually said on State of the Union Sunday in an interview with host Candy Crowley:
PELOSI: Well, we all -- war is a deadly thing. And I have many Palestinians who live in my district and I am hearing them regularly about how their families are affected who live in the region. It's a terrible thing. But let me just say that any missile that comes from someplace has a return address. And if Israel is responding to that address, then that's a shame that the Palestinians are use -- are rumored to be using children and families as shields for their missiles.
Should we all try to, first of all, avoid conflict, the Hamas initiated this. So again, this has to be something where we try to have the two-state solution, that we have to support -- we have to support Abbas and his role as a leader there. We have to support Iron Dome to protect the Israelis from the missiles. We have to support the Palestinians and what they need. And we have to confer with the Qataris, who have told me over and over again that Hamas is a humanitarian organization, maybe they could use their influence to -
CROWLEY: The U.S. (INAUDIBLE) organization though, correct, to you?
PELOSI: We've had that discussion.
CROWLEY: I have to leave it there. I hope you will come back and we will talk politics and mid-term and all kinds of things going on (INAUDIBLE). I appreciate your time.
Clearly, Pelosi was not trying to talk up Hamas but to talk up the Qataris as a third party with possible cred for both sides. But Kelly either deliberately or negligently distorted what Pelosi was saying - and then made a huge deal out of it.
KELLY: Nancy Pelosi seemed to suggest over the weekend that Hamas, which we recognize as a terrorist group, is actually out to do good.
Kelly played only the end of CNN discussion - which made it look like Pelosi was agreeing with the Qataris. Kelly shouted in ginned up indignation:
It is stunning! It’s not like some crazy fringe group here in America says Hamas is a terrorist organization. The State Department! And she’s out there saying that they’re a humanitarian group and when asked, …"Do you agree?" "Mmm-hmm" is the most she can muster. What just went on there?
Sure enough, Goldstein found Pelosi’s comments “shocking.” She added, “I have no words for a serving politician’s inability to articulate that Hamas …indeed targets civilians indiscriminately for political purposes.” Apparently, Goldstein either didn’t check out what Pelosi actually said or just ignored it, too.
However, for good anti-Pelosi/Democratic measure, Goldstein announced, “Qatar is one of the great mother ships of terror financing. …Qatar is no partner for peace or a mediator. Qatar is the reason why this war is happening in the first place.”
Rather than point out, as her subsequent guest did, that Qatar is an important U.S. ally in the region, Kelly threw in her own anti-Democratic swipe, this one at John Kerry: “They are one of the groups that John Kerry reportedly wanted to insert into this deal, to try to negotiate a peace, which Israel rejected out of hand.”
With her next guest, Larry Korb, Senior Fellow at Center for American Progress and former assistant secretary of defense under Ronald Reagan, Kelly continued smearing Pelosi as either cluelessly or deliberately supporting Hamas: “She’s the House Minority Leader. Doesn’t she know who Hamas is?" Kelly asked.
I’m sorry Korb didn’t smack down this entire segment. But he did point out that Qatar is not just an ally but that we have a military base there.
Kelly interrupted. “Understood,” she said. “But why is Nancy Pelosi basing her characterizations of Hamas on what the Qataris are telling her? Why doesn’t she know? She’s in a position to know. Secondly, why is she describing them as a humanitarian organization?”
When Korb said Hamas does do some humanitarian work, Kelly started shouting sarcastically, “Good for them! Tell it to the State Department which says they’re terorrists!”
Korb said that we (and Israel) have to negotiate with enemies, like it or not.
Kelly interrupted again. “Why didn’t she just say that? That sounds somewhat reasonable. But to go out there and paint them as, you know, The Red Cross.”
Actually Pelosi was trying to say that but Crowley interrupted her and then ended the discussion.
You really need to watch the video to get the full effect of Kelly’s overblown dramatics, based on a false premise.