HH: I’m joined by Mark Steyn, Columnist To the World. Mark, this seems to be what everyone has been warning about for the past six weeks or so as Ramadan comes to an end, Abdulazeez arrives on the scene to kill four Marines.
MS: Yes, these stories are all different, and in a certain sense, they’re all the same. You said it was two military installations, which makes them sound more secure than they are. This was in fact a recruiting center, which means it was a storefront in a shopping mall. It was next to a pizza joint, and it had a little sticker on the door saying in effect that this is a gun-free zone. So in fact, these storefronts, which are all over America, I passed one earlier this morning in a town in Northeastern Vermont, are incredibly vulnerable to attacks like this. And I think this is, whether or not it’s actually directed by ISIS or anybody, I mean, most of these lone wolves turn out to be, as I’ve said before on your show, known wolves in that they’ve been on the radar of certain people, certain authorities at some point. But I think it’s comparable with what happened in Ottawa in Quebec last fall where ISIS supporters killed Corporal Nathan Cirillo and Warrant Office Patrice Vincent. And by doing that, ISIS is telling you look, if we can kill your soldiers with impunity, nobody is safe. If you can just kill four U.S. Marines from the most powerful fighting force on the planet, how easy is it then to kill the kindergarten teacher? How easy is it to kill the pastor? How easy is it to kill the accountant? If a soldier’s not safe in a recruiting center, then nobody is safe, and that’s the message that ISIS or whoever is trying to send with this.
HH: My friend, retired Army Colonel Mark came by today to drop off a symbol to me, and he also told me that it is prohibited by military regulations to have weapons in any recruitment center, regardless of the state law, which seems to me to be insane.
MS: Yes, I think is absolutely is insane, and we’ve seen this again and again. I understand that it’s a Clinton era policy, but in fact, some of the most vulnerable places in the United States are actually military installations, or just recruiting centers, or full-scale military bases. But basically, they’re the equivalent of some insane left wing campus that’s all fluffy bunny peacenik. And it is absolutely ridiculous that these four Marines were dependent on that sticker in the glass door of the shopping mall declaring that this place was a gun free zone, that they’re dependent on that to protect them. And that is going to have to change, because you know, four, this is, from an ISIS point of view, from the jihad’s point of view, four high-value targets, the best in America trained to the highest level, and some nothing, some punk guy, some kid born in Kuwait whose dad works for the Chattanooga Public Works Department or whatever, is able to take them down, because as a matter of United States government policy, these Marines in these recruiting centers are vulnerable, because the government says they have to be vulnerable.
HH: Mark Steyn, I want to phrase this very carefully so idiots on the left do not accuse me of things I do not say. We suspect that this man is a Sunni extremist, radicalized by the Islamic State. We don’t know that, yet, but we suspect that. I understand that the Islamic Republic of Iran is a Shiia fanaticism, but they are fanatics, and they are sponsors of terror. Why is it, why does it make sense to negotiate with a terrorist regime of Islamist fanatics, Shiia branch, but to condemn the Islamic State Islamist fanatics, Sunni branch? It does not, it does not make any sense to me that we would trust one set of terrorists because they’ve been in power longer than the other set of terrorists.
MS: Well, the left is, the left is going to come down on you for that statement anyway, Hugh, because the left’s position on this is that it’s nothing to do with Islam. And any moment now, the President and the Secretary of Defense and the Secretary of Homeland Security will be going out and giving interviews insisting that this has nothing to do with Islam, and John Kerry does, as David Cameron does in London, as President Hollande does in Paris, that this is the standard line. So in fact, as far as the left is concerned, the same people who tell you that when nine people die in a church in South Carolina that it’s all the fault of the Confederate flag, and the Confederate flag has to be run through the shredder, and Confederate war memorials all over the country have to be torn up and the ground salted, then turn around when something like, when four people die, four Marines die in a recruiting office, and will say that this has nothing to do with Islam, and has no wider implication. All jihad is local, there’s no bigger picture to see here. That’s the left’s position. It’s completely insane.
HH: I do not understand how we can deal with this regime, because it is run by fanatics, and they are state sponsors of terror, and we are trusting them. Let me ask you about this, Mark. You watched the President yesterday. Did you see him go all thin-skin on Major Garrett, by the way?
MS: Yes, he is a thin-skinned individual, and that’s very true. And to, the fact, these hostages in Iran should not have been part of the negotiation, because you shouldn’t be seen to be negotiating for hostages. So the idea that four hostages would be traded for $100 billion windfall or whatever Iran’s getting out of this would not have been good. But at the same time, if this was a genuine rapprochement between the United States and Iran, Iran, those hostages would already be on a plane.
MS: …to the United States. The fact that they’re not tells you that these guys are still in full-scale death to America mode. They mean that, and the President, the President has bet on a rapprochement that Ayatollah Khamenei and nobody else is willing to make, because otherwise, those four hostages would right now be sitting at JFK or at Reagan or at some other U.S. airport.
HH: Now Mark, in the last two days, I have questioned seven would-be Republican nominees – Governors Christie, Kasich, Perry, Walker and Jindal, Carly Fiorina, Lindsey Graham, George Pataki’s coming up later. I’ve asked them or prompted them a total of 64 questions or prompts in less than 100 minutes. They all answered them. They have nothing to hide. They have their opinions. Hillary Clinton hasn’t said anything on the most important negotiation of our age, the moment of appeasement, she said nothing. What the President said was incoherent. He said, you know, we’re stopping an arms race when in fact he’s put the match to an arms race. But put him aside. He’s old news. He’s done in 15 months. How can she get away with not talking to anyone about this?
MS: Well, she gets away with it, because we have a fundamentally unserious press corps. At the end of her brief remarks, her little statement about Iran, some journalist seriously, a member of the Washington Press corps, asked her if she was going to the Taylor Swift concert tonight. You know, say what you like about Neville Chamberlain when he flew back and landed at Heston Aerodrome in 1938 and said I have here a piece of paper from Herr Hitler, but the hack from Fleet Street didn’t say oh, are you going to see Ambrose and his orchestra or George Formby tonight. We aren’t, that, the fact that that journalist could actually ask that question and not realize what an appalling reflection it is on media in the United States today is staggering to me. So that’s why she can get away with it.
HH: It was like the Bill Cosby question. When no one asked about the sabotage protocol, where we’ve agreed to help the Iranians stop the Israelis from stopping the Iranians, and yet we get a question about Bill Cosby, it is fundamentally unserious. I don’t know what you do about it, though.
MS: No, I don’t know what you do about it, and I think this is what is so dangerous about this deal. I don’t think it actually was about, I think in effect, Obama, because he sees this as a sort of Nixon to China thing, that he’s ushering Iran back into the global community, and he hijacked those fairly useless European Iranian nuclear talks, and turned them into something else, which is where the United States is going to facilitate the biggest global sponsor of terrorism’s rise to regional and beyond regional power. We’re going to be giving them money, we’re going to be giving them weapons, we’re going to be defending them in case those crazy Israelis, that crazy Netanyahu, decides he wants to do something about it. And as you say, not a single journalist at that joke of a press conference actually appeared to have read the agreement.
HH: You’re right. And Susan Rice said all the money’s going to go to help the people of Iran, Mark Steyn. Didn’t you…
MS: Yeah, that’s right. I guess it’s for the Tehran branch of Planned Parenthood or whatever.
HH: Mark Steyn, Columnist To the World, follow him @MarkSteynOnline, America.
End of interview.