Hot Air exclusive: Guess who’s visiting the troops at Bagram Air Base? Updated

posted at 10:34 am on November 18, 2007 by Bryan

Former Marine, war correspondent for World Net Daily and embedded blogger Matt Sanchez spotted Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly arriving and getting ready to spend some time with the troops. Says Matt:

O’Reilly pulled into Afghanistan to say hello to the troops, but was spared the red carpet treatment.

Here he is at Billeting getting a standard-issue pillow and blanket.

oreilly-bagram-07.jpg

O’Reilly made a surprise Christmas trip to Iraq last year. This is his first trip to Afghanistan.

Update: Matt is working on a story about the trip for World Net Daily. That should hit tomorrow, but he was kind enough to send along a preview. It sounds like O’Reilly’s trip has meant quite a bit to the troops at Bagram.

“This trip was about meeting the troops,” said Army Captain Peter Katzfey who called the response to O’Reilly’s visit “overwhelming”. The 31-year old native of Plymouth, Wisconson coordinates media visits to Afghanistan including the “big names” like Diane Sawyer, but nothing compared to O’Reilly’s visit.

“He packed as many visits and events into a short period of time. From the moment he hit the ground in Afghanistan, radio and cable news host, Bill O’Reilly began to meet and greet the troops.

“It’s not an exaggeration to say he personally met over 1,200 people in less than 48 hours,” said Katzfey who coordinated many of the events. “All his meals were with servicemen and women,” and he came bearing gifts.


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No surprise there. Say what you like about Bill O, but at least he makes the effort. That’s class.

thejackal on November 18, 2007 at 10:36 AM

Did he bring Al Sharpton and Geraldo with him?

Always Right on November 18, 2007 at 10:37 AM

It’s not quite Bob Hope, but still good. As a kid, I used to watch on NETWORK tv the USO shows in Vietnam. It was the only positive view I was given of OUR troops.

How I’d love to see a 2 hour televised special of entertainers in a major USO show in Iraq and Afghanistan.

JiangxiDad on November 18, 2007 at 10:41 AM

Good for Bill… He’s one of the good guys. An obnoxious good guy, but OUR obnoxious good guy.

Rugged Individual on November 18, 2007 at 10:46 AM

Well done, Mr. O…

eanax on November 18, 2007 at 10:47 AM

Nice. It’s important for people to remember our troops in Afghanistan, which usually plays second fiddle to Iraq.

JetBoy on November 18, 2007 at 10:49 AM

Always Right on November 18, 2007 at 10:37 AM

The Justice Brothers were unavailable for comment.

amerpundit on November 18, 2007 at 10:51 AM

I hope our troops are pleased. And good for Bill for making the effort.

Since the “spittle” incident with his boy Geraldo, I am no longer an O’Reilly viewer. Reruns of Star Trek Enterprise have replace him at the 8 o’clock hour.

Zorro on November 18, 2007 at 10:57 AM

Excellent – I know the troops really appreciate these trips, as it lets them connect with the American people through talking heads like Mr. Bill.

T J Green on November 18, 2007 at 10:59 AM

Good for him. I’m glad to see that he is visiting the troops….I’ll watch to see what he reports..

Pam on November 18, 2007 at 11:01 AM

You just know KO going to slam him on Countdown for it….the little weasel….this is the second time O’Reilly has gone to see the troops how many times has Bathtub boy done that?..oh that’s right he hasn’t because he might be forced to meet people who don’t agree with him.

mlong on November 18, 2007 at 11:05 AM

Thanks Bill!

I hope he brought a camera crew to film and report from the war there. If Iraq is “our Vietnam” then Afghanistan is “our Korea”, our forgotten war. That’s another reason I’d like to see “Jawbreaker” turned into a movie.

Tony737 on November 18, 2007 at 11:06 AM

Nice work BillO. Can’t wait to hear what the retarded sports nutroot from the communist nutroot channel says about Bill’s trip. Oberheimer will be blinded with jealousy.

Griz on November 18, 2007 at 11:07 AM

Oh and just to clarify, Iraq is NOT “our Vietnam”.

Tony737 on November 18, 2007 at 11:10 AM

The Defense Department today has kicked off a “Giving Thanks” initiative wherein Americans can text message U.S. troops between now and midnight (PST), Nov. 22, and thank them for their service.

Simply send a brief text-message to 89279, and you will receive a response from an active-duty servicemember.

Details here. Tell others.

bnelson44 on November 18, 2007 at 11:19 AM

When is Olberdunce going to visits the troops?

JammieWearingFool on November 18, 2007 at 11:22 AM

I have alot of respect for Bill O’Reilly for his support of our troops. With him, it’s more than just talk. I’m looking forward to his reports on his trip.

katieanne on November 18, 2007 at 11:25 AM

Actually, not really an exclusive Bryan. Matt Burden had the scoop at Blackfive on Friday.

Michael in MI on November 18, 2007 at 11:28 AM

:salute: Bill O
i had a feeling thats where he was, i guessed that on his site for the drawing of a camera.

trailortrash on November 18, 2007 at 11:31 AM

This show real class. I hope he will broadcast from there and permit soldiers to speak with loved ones.

Captain America on November 18, 2007 at 11:34 AM

When is Olberdunce going to visits the troops?

JammieWearingFool on November 18, 2007 at 11:22 AM

About the same time his bedroom ratings turn positive…it just ain’t gonna happen :)

Pam on November 18, 2007 at 11:36 AM

This show real class. I hope he will broadcast from there and permit soldiers to speak with loved ones.

Captain America on November 18, 2007 at 11:34 AM

I’ve got to believe that is part of the programming intention…the troops can’t come home for Thanksgiving, so Bill will bring them home, if only on television…I always cry when I see these types of things…

Pam on November 18, 2007 at 11:39 AM

Well done Bill!

JiangxiDad on November 18, 2007 at 10:41 AM

The USO is a fantastic organization.

It’s interesting to see who their corporate sponsors are.

For some reason MSNBC and CNN aren’t among them. I guess they must have other ways that they “support the troops”.

Buy Danish on November 18, 2007 at 11:39 AM

The troops really enjoyed Bill’s visit. He literally spent every moment meeting and thanking troops.

Matt Sanchez
Afghanistan

Mattsanchez on November 18, 2007 at 11:43 AM

Go Bill.

abinitioadinfinitum on November 18, 2007 at 11:50 AM

This puts the difference between patriots and the Mark Cubans of the world, front and center for all to see.

Good for you Bill. You are a true American patriot and a valued member of our national community.

csdeven on November 18, 2007 at 12:03 PM

Former Marine and embedded blogger Matt Sanchez spotted Fox News Channel’s Bill O’Reilly arriving and getting ready to spend some time with the troops.

Patriot.

When is Olberdunce going to visits the troops?

Pinhead.

James on November 18, 2007 at 12:04 PM

Don’t forget that Bill has a contest “where is Bill on Assignment?” Hey! is a Canon 7.1 pixels!

Ropera on November 18, 2007 at 12:11 PM

Semper Fi Mr. O’Reilly.

Wade on November 18, 2007 at 12:13 PM

Since the “spittle” incident with his boy Geraldo, I am no longer an O’Reilly viewer.

I hear that, but I simply cannot resist the Ingraham Factor. And I long for the day that Fox throws that race baiting moron out on his ear.

Pablo on November 18, 2007 at 12:13 PM

Buy Danish on November 18, 2007 at 11:39 AM

Love them. I’m a little guy sponsor :)

JiangxiDad on November 18, 2007 at 12:17 PM

Marine

I have to add that Mr. O’Reilly made a special trip to the tiny Marine SWA Hut. Those Marines were happy to meet him, even the ones who didn’t “always agree with him” appreciated O’Reilly’s ability to “say what he feels and stand by his word.”

Qualities all Marines appreciate.

Matt Sanchez

Afghanistan

Mattsanchez on November 18, 2007 at 12:21 PM

Spittle Incident

I hear that, but I simply cannot resist the Ingraham Factor. And I long for the day that Fox throws that race baiting moron out on his ear.

Pablo on November 18, 2007 at 12:13 PM

I do watch The Factor when there is a guest host and Laura was fabulous. But when that he-man woman hater Geraldo’s name is mentioned or his pathetic face appears, I’m gone.

Zorro on November 18, 2007 at 12:23 PM

I agree…well done Billy O…

areseaoh on November 18, 2007 at 12:27 PM

Imagine the shape this country would be in, if it weren’t for O’Reilly, Rush, MM, Laura, et al.

You guys please take good care of yourselves. You are our hope.

petefrt on November 18, 2007 at 12:31 PM

Who can forget the long lines of troops, shaking his hand in Iraq, last year?

In contrast to Johnny-the-Commie, sitting all alone in a mess-hall.

franksalterego on November 18, 2007 at 12:32 PM

Mattsanchez on November 18, 2007 at 12:21 PM

Very good to hear Matt and thanks for the updates!

No matter what you think of O’Reilly (I like him, I know others dont), the fact that the Marines appreciated it is paramount. Well done sir.

Dash on November 18, 2007 at 12:33 PM

You just know KO going to slam him on Countdown for it….the little weasel….this is the second time O’Reilly has gone to see the troops how many times has Bathtub boy done that?..oh that’s right he hasn’t because he might be forced to meet people who don’t agree with him.

My thoughts exactly. Of course the Kos Kids will be pullng for a Taliban assaassination of O’Reilly.

Hilts on November 18, 2007 at 12:55 PM

Good for O’Reilly!

As for Olber-meister making a trip to a war zone? They don’t make Pampers, Depends large enough to fit his fat butt…love to see him pee his pants, though.

lib_not on November 18, 2007 at 1:09 PM

Damn! I didn’t win the camera! When Laura Ingraham subbed for him Friday she said you could go to the web site and guess where he was on assignment and win a camera. At his site there was just a drop down list of countries, and I guessed Iraq.

RightWinged on November 18, 2007 at 1:22 PM

Unless the troops have changed, and I mean a whole lot, over the last generation, what they would like is not for someone to visit by his lonesome, but someone to bring some babes with him, lots of babes. That’s what Bob Hope did. Of course very few troops were able to attend, but those that did, Oh My.

MB4 on November 18, 2007 at 1:43 PM

No matter what you think of O’Reilly (I like him, I know others dont), the fact that the Marines appreciated it is paramount. Well done sir.

Dash on November 18, 2007 at 12:33 PM

Absolutely! Our fighting men and women deserve all that we can give them and more. Any break from the day to day grind I’m sure is welcomed. More of our “celebrities” should show their appreciation of our troops.

And to be clear, it’s not that I dislike O’Reilly I’m just really disappointed in his lack of support for Michelle when that boorish non-thinker, Geraldo, verbally attacked her.

Zorro on November 18, 2007 at 1:43 PM

Bill leaves the politics at home. He is there for the troops. PERIOD.

csdeven on November 18, 2007 at 2:33 PM

Unless you have been there you can not imagine how great it makes you feel when people from home come to visit and or perform for you when you are in country. That and a letter at mail call are the best of times.

Again Mr. O’Reilly Semper Fi and thanks for stepping up.

Wade on November 18, 2007 at 3:17 PM

What has this world come to when Harry Reid can spew bile about ‘we lost the war’, then resume his congressional duties like he just commented on the weather. What reputable General would serve under Hillary’s inept control.

malkinmania on November 18, 2007 at 3:36 PM

Attaboy, Bill!

georgej on November 18, 2007 at 3:47 PM

When is Olberdunce going to visits the troops?

Why? Do the troops need a live targets to train with?

georgej on November 18, 2007 at 3:49 PM

I like that he didn’t make a big deal out of it “He just went.”

Visits like this actually mean something to the troops, not like some glad handing photo op’ing senator or congressman.

I’m not a big O’Reilly fan but I gotta say “Hoo Yah! Bill, Bravo Zulu!

Oldnuke on November 18, 2007 at 3:55 PM

What reputable General would serve under Hillary’s inept control.

malkinmania on November 18, 2007 at 3:36 PM

None. If she becomes president look for a mass exodus like when Clenis was boss.

Wade on November 18, 2007 at 4:18 PM

The troops really enjoyed Bill’s visit. He literally spent every moment meeting and thanking troops.

Matt Sanchez
Afghanistan

Mattsanchez on November 18, 2007 at 11:43 AM

!!! Thanks much for the live comments! Definitely appreciated. Hope all is well there.

RD on November 18, 2007 at 5:16 PM

Good job Bill O’

xplodeit on November 18, 2007 at 6:55 PM

Thanks for the report Matt.

xplodeit on November 18, 2007 at 6:57 PM

O’Reilly may have his heart in the right place on some issues, but he is dead wrong on others: he is NOT a conservative leader.

As for his radio show, I cannot stand to listen to it. It is totally without humor or entertainment value of any kind. Contrast that with Rush, who is always entertaining even when you don’t agree with him.

landlines on November 18, 2007 at 7:24 PM

Those Marines were happy to meet him, even the ones who didn’t “always agree with him” appreciated O’Reilly’s ability to “say what he feels and stand by his word.”
Mattsanchez on November 18, 2007 at 12:21 PM

Hi, Matt, and thanks for your service. Bill-O can be an idiot at times, but never for this.

Nichevo on November 18, 2007 at 7:27 PM

Thank you Matt Sanchez!

Thank you all Soldiers!

Thank you Bill O’Reilly!

Entelechy on November 18, 2007 at 10:47 PM

That’s awesome! Go Bill!!!

4shoes on November 18, 2007 at 11:12 PM

Not ONE accusation of him taking the trip for a photo-op either… That’s great. Semper Fi, O-Factor Guy…!

Rugged Individual on November 19, 2007 at 1:51 AM

As for his radio show, I cannot stand to listen to it. It is totally without humor or entertainment value of any kind. Contrast that with Rush, who is always entertaining even when you don’t agree with him.

landlines on November 18, 2007 at 7:24 PM

Savage is much better.
He makes me think.
The others seem to be trying to make me forget how to.

MB4 on November 19, 2007 at 3:31 AM

What reputable General would serve under Hillary’s inept control.

malkinmania on November 18, 2007 at 3:36 PM

None. If she becomes president look for a mass exodus like when Clenis was boss.

Wade on November 18, 2007 at 4:18 PM

I suspect that most will stay to try and save the Army.
Just as they are staying now.

MB4 on November 19, 2007 at 3:34 AM

What reputable General would serve under Hillary’s inept control.

I suspect, since we still have Generals that served under her husband, you have a coterie of Generals that are salivating over her getting the Presidency; those and the State Department.

MNDavenotPC on November 19, 2007 at 11:11 AM