Tucker Carlson stopped short of saying that some of his best friends are Jewish. But he did let us know that "I love Israel, I think it's a wonderful place, I support it completely, I support it instinctively."
That was just before he declared that "I think this war helps Hezbollah. I think it's bad for Israel, bad for the United States. I think you can love Israel and believe this war is a disaster."
And it was just after he criticized President Bush for being too pro-Israel.
Carlson turned to Bill Press, his guest on this afternoon's Tucker show on MSNBC, observing:
"You never hear Democrats point out that Bush is not even-handed in the Middle East. You almost never hear anybody criticize the President for taking the side of Israel to the extent that he alienates the Arab world completely. Why doesn't anybody ever mention that?"
The former chairman of the California Dem party gave a response suggesting he might be a proud graduate of the Pat Buchanan 'Amen Corner' School of Foreign Policy:
"There's a very powerful force in Washington, Tucker, that I think has a strong influence on both Republicans and Democrats."
So powerful a force, apparently, that Press was afraid to speak its name!
Let me get this straight. Carlson supports Israel "completely." But he criticizes Pres. Bush for doing the same. O-K.
On a lighter note, in the regular 'Beat the Press' segment, Carlson rightly had fun at the expense of Anderson Cooper of CNN. Cooper, who has been in Israel for some time now covering the war, recently went off on a elegiac jag about his experiences reporting the conflict, and Tucker delighted in displaying excerpts from Anderson's ouevre, including the this morsel:
"You want to feel the heat, the fury, swallow the embers. You watch firefighters put out the flames, it's never enough."
Want to swallow the embers, Anderson? Check out Bobby Joe's BBQ Shack. But please, I'm begging you, lay off the poetry.