Sarah Palin hit back today at reports that she was uninformed and unprepared on the 2008 campaign trail.

In her debut as a Fox News contributor, Palin told Bill O'Reilly that anecdotes about her reported in a new book and repeated in a 60 Minutes interview with a top McCain strategist were false.


John Heilemann and Mark Halperin report in their book "Game Change," for example, that Palin could not understand the difference between North Korea and South Korea.

"Yes, that surprised me," Palin said tonight.  "I hadn't seen the '60 Minutes" thing.'  I had been warned, you know, don't watch.  It's a bunch of B.S. from [Steve] Schmidt and from some of those."

Steve Schmidt was one of McCain's top strategists. He told 60 Minutes that Palin repeatedly made false statements during the campaign that caused headaches for her handlers.

"There were numerous instances that she said things that were--that were not accurate that ultimately, the campaign had to deal with," Schmidt said. "And that opened the door to criticism that she was being untruthful and inaccurate. And I think that that is something that continues to this day."

He also said Palin was disastrous during her preparation for her debate with Joe Biden, so much so that an aide warned Schmidt that the debate would be a "debacle of historic and epic proportions."

Palin said that was false.

“That is not true.  And Steve Schmidt told us how overjoyed he was after the debate, so pleased with the way everything turned out, as he was after the convention...”

The former Alaska Governor said Schmidt was simply repeating "gossipy anonymous accusations."

But she did confirm one anecdote: that during the campaign she had questions about whether Saddam Hussein was behind 9/11.

"You know what, on that, I did talk a lot to Steve Schmidt about the history of the war and about where, perhaps, the 9/11 terrorists came from and could there have been any connection to Saddam...So I admit that I have questions about it," she said.

Finally, Palin responded to the controversy surrounding Harry Reid's reported comments about Barack Obama's race.

Palin said she did not think Reid was racist, but repeated the GOP argument that he is being treated differently than Trent Lott was in 2002 when he was forced from his post after praising Strom Thurmond's 1948 presidential campaign.

"I don't believe that he's a racist. But I don't believe that Trent Lott was a racist, either," she said,