Shep Smith praised WikiLeaks on Monday, and harshly criticized the U.S. government for what he called "lies" about America's Middle East policy.
The torrent of reporting based on the leaked diplomatic cables obtained by WikiLeaks has slowed considerably in the past few months, but the cables are still causing ripples. On Monday's "Studio B," Smith focused on a report in Sunday's Washington Post (which WikiLeaks has apparently turned to after a dramatic falling out with its main original American news partner, the New York Times) revealing that the U.S. has been secretly funding opposition groups in Syria.
Smith brought on former CIA agent Mike Baker, and immediately praised WikiLeaks for exposing what he called government lies. "I don't know why anybody would be surprised by what this bunch of folks does anymore," he said. Baker responded that the Post had suddenly made itself "the arbiter of what's good for the public to know." That got Smith fired up.
"Wait a minute," he said, his voice rising. "You get information that the government's lying to you again, one more lie from the government! I wish they would publish all of it! Every lie they tell ought to be laid bare!" Baker said he wasn't sure that the Syria news could be called a lie.
"We're not in a war and we haven't taken sides in Libya?" Smith fired back. "Those are lies, and this is a lie too...the list of lies is so long that we don't even have room for it on the screen any more." The cables from WikiLeaks, he said, seemed to be "the only straight answers that we get anymore."