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Shep Smith Grills Asst. Secretary Of State PJ Crowley On US Neutrality In Gaza Flotilla Case

Shepard Smith didn’t limit his ire to the inscrutable PR moves of BP CEO Tony Hayward today. Interviewing Assistant Secretary of State PJ Crowley on the United States’ position on the current conflict in Gaza today on Studio B, he put Crowley on the defensive about the fact that, according to Smith, America is one of the last countries to not take an unambiguous position on the matter.

Crowley began to explain that the State Department understood and shared the concerns of those in Gaza and the Palestinian officials, but that they were also aware of legitimate security concerns on Israel’s part and did not have complete information to take a side. After his explanation, Smith plainly asked, “Nine people are dead, Israel is at a crossroads, and the position of the United States on this incident officially is what?” and quickly interrupted Crowley when he began to respond with a similar answer, going off about the US’s neutrality:

“I know, but see, that’s the problem PJ, and you keep repeating it because we don’t have an official position yet. The rest of the world has an official position. Almost every country on planet earth has spoken out with an official position. Where is the United States’ position on this matter? I know it’s not for you to come up with a position, but clearly there isn’t one yet.”

He reiterated that a complete set of information was necessary to take a side, and that the US was most interested in ending violence on both sides. Then Smith gave him a difficult hypothetical: if Turkey chooses to engage in military action against Israel, isn’t the US then compelled to attack Israel also since Turkey is a NATO member? Crowley called the conclusion “dead wrong,” noting that Turkey has a very close relationship with Israel and a military conflict between those countries is unlikely.

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