John Nolte
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
If Tarantino's greatest movie was made up only of scenes showing Brad Pitt driving around Los Angeles, it still would have made this list.
(Review Source)
Mark Steyn
This Monday marks the fifth anniversary of the Benghazi attack and, as Hillary Clinton would say, "What difference at this point does it make?" Which is why, presumably, she's chosen the occasion for the release of her latest leaden tome. But it makes
(Review Source)
The Federalist Staff
Turn to movies and art for a mental reset during these trying political times. Here are seven picks to remind you that unity and shared values still exist.
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PJ Media Staff
Roger L. Simon This evening, after I write this piece, I will be voting in the Oscars, for the first time online. (I have been an Academy member since 1985 and we have always voted during that period on written forms mailed directly to Price Waterhouse.)  The Academy discourages us from revealing our votes – so I won’t. (At least not here. Watch the next Poliwood and you might get some idea.)But I will tell you one film I will not be voting for -- Zero Dark Thirty, Kathryn Bigelow and Mark Boal’s version of the hunt for Bin Laden.  It’s not that the filmmakers are untalented.  As I mentioned a few years ago on Poliwood, I quite admired their 2008 opus The Hurt Locker.  But Zero Dark Thirty felt rushed and disorganized.  Even a news junkie like me often didn’t know what was happening or why.Perhaps the killing of Bin Laden defies telling in a feature film.  The material is too vast and a mini-series would have been better, especially since it is fraught with irony and Bin Laden’s assassination may have been, in the end, irrelevant.  (“Obama, Obama, we are all Osama.”) In any case, two hours plus is just not enough.One story, however, cries out for cinematic dramatization -- Benghazi.It is concise and highly dramatic.  And mysteries abound – just where was the president of the United States that night our ambassador and others were under terror attack in North Africa?  Why wasn’t Obama directly involved? Why did the secretary of State pay so little attention? Just what was our ambassador to Libya doing in Benghazi that night anyway? Why were the perpetrators allowed to escape?  Why did the president lie for weeks about what transpired, trying to make a hopeless video nobody saw seem  the cause of the event?   And why were his lies covered up by CNN’s Candy Crowley? Why was no attempt made to save our people in the first place? (I could go on, but you get the drift.)Though I could guess (and the Daily Mail has some theories), I don’t know the definitive answer to any of these questions, but I do know one thing: If I did… if anybody did… know the truth, Benghazi would be one helluva movie. And a commercial one.But would anybody make it?That’s the question. class="pages"> https://pjmedia.com/rogerlsimon/2013/2/15/benghazi-the-motion-picture/ previous Page 1 of 2 next   ]]>
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PJ Media Staff
Trendingbenghazi 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi is not just an entertaining movie, it's a 144-minute rebuttal to everything the Obama administration has been saying about the attack since it took place on September 11, 2012.The "true story" of Benghazi, as told by the secret soldiers, is a powerful rebuke to the "tall tales" that were told by the White House, the State Department and their defenders. There was no "fog of war" that prevented the Department of Defense from sending military assets to Benghazi -- just a foggy narrative that was created by the commander in chief and secretary of state to explain the debacle without looking weak and feckless two months before an election.The movie is based on the book of the same name, written by Boston University journalism professor Mitchell Zuckoff with the five CIA contractors who were on the ground in Benghazi that night: Jack Silva, Mark "Oz" Geist, John "Tig" Tiegen, Kris "Tanto" Paronto, and Dave "Boon" Benton."Jack Silva" (played by “The Office" alum John Krasinski) and “Dave Benton” (played by David Denman) are pseudonymous names because their real identities have not been revealed.The authors say in the book's introduction that they wanted to avoid politics in favor of presenting a factual account of what happened during the 13 hours of fighting, but it's clear that director Michael Bay has taken sides in the debate about what happened on the ground that night.Oh yes there was a "stand-down order."Members of the security team at the annex were "jocked up and ready to go" within five minutes of the attack on the State Department compound, but were prevented from going for almost 30 minutes. That delay almost certainly cost at least one—and possibly both—of the lives that were lost at the diplomatic compound.If there is a villain in the movie (other than the jihadis) it's "Bob," the CIA station chief who gave the security contractors the stand-down order. But the film has a lot of unnamed villains.Who were the indifferent and indecisive officials in Washington who advised him to stand down? Who in Washington was watching—in real time—the drone feed of the attack?Why were the buffoons in Washington blaming an obviously pre-planned terrorist attack on demonstrations over a YouTube video: "I didn't see any demonstration!" one of the contractors said in stunned disbelief in reaction to the claim, as the enemy assault grew in intensity and RPG fire shook the compound.Who are the officials in Washington who rejected the pleas for reinforcements?At a conference organized by the Maryland Citizen Action Network last weekend, Kris Paronto revealed that two AC-130H “Spectre” gunships were on call and within range of Benghazi that night.One of them was a six-hour flight away, co-located with a U.S. special operations team in Djibouti.The other was at Naval Air Station Sigonella, in Sicily. “That’s a 45-minute flight,” Paronto said.The Spectre gunship with its 25mm rapid-fire gatling guns, its 40 mm precision Bofors gun, and its 105mm canon is “good in urban warfare because you have little collateral damage,” Paronto explained.In fact, it was just what the beleaguered security team needed.The film depicts the men's sense of abandonment over and over again. class="pages"> https://pjmedia.com/trending/2016/1/13/13-hours-the-security-contractors-have-their-say/ previous Page 1 of 2 next   ]]>
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PJ Media Staff
PJ Mediaterrorismstate department2016War on Terrorhillary clintonBarack Obamaentertainmentbenghazicampaign2016 presidential electioncharacter confidence presidential election 2016mideast var dataLayer = window.dataLayer = window.dataLayer || []; dataLayer.push({ 'videoName': '13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi - Official Trailer', 'videoType': 'Curated' }); Michael Bay’s 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi is a fantastic film, no less excellent for its surprisingly subtle political commentary. Far better than any direct attack ad, this film blasts President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton while telling a compelling story of terror and heroism.Cinekatz reviewer Vivek Subramanyam declared that “Michael Bay was born to make this movie.” Despite its hyperbole, this statement captures the combination of the action director behind “Transformers” and the tragic but thrilling tale of the September 11, 2012 terror attacks in Benghazi, Libya.The film, based on the Mitchell Zuckoff book 13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in Benghazi, tells the story of six ex-military security contractors working for a secret CIA base near the diplomatic compound which housed U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens. The movie shows how difficult it was for these men to tell friend from foe -- were the native Libyans on their side, or waiting for the perfect moment to kill them?A nail-biter from start to finish, 13 Hours shows events in what seems like real time, jumping from location to location. The film has a purposefully disorienting feel, heightened by ominous music and stunning cinematography -- each shot captures incredible detail of a city at war with itself. The movie is surprisingly funny despite the grave circumstances. (One commando asks another: “You’re going to fight the Holy War in your shorts? Strong move.”) The acting mostly takes a backseat to the action, but John Krasinski (Navy SEAL Jack Silva) and James Badge Dale (Navy SEAL Tyrone Woods) nail their characters' courage. Woods’ disobeyal of direct orders (“None of you have to go, but we are the only hope they have”) is powerful.------------------Unavoidably political, the film bears three themes that condemn the leadership of Barack Obama and Hillary Clinton:“The Dark Shadow Of Tyranny Has Been Lifted”After announcing dictator Muammar Gaddafi’s death, President Obama declared: This is a momentous day in the history of Libya. The dark shadow of tyranny has been lifted.The movie begins with a clip of this statement, immediately followed by images of street militias getting their hands on the old regime’s weapons, and scenes of bloody violence thereafter. The carnage and death that characterizes the city of Benghazi throughout the film itself stands as a strong rebuke to Obama’s decision -- advocated by Secretary of State Hillary Clinton and others -- to aid the overthrow of Gaddafi’s government. Warfare, not an "Arab Spring," followed the fall of the old regime; the September 11, 2012 attack was only the slightest American taste of the country’s bloodshed.Obama's speech did not end with “the dark shadow of tyranny has been lifted.” He continued, placing the ultimate outcome in the hands of the Libyan people: With this enormous promise, the Libyan people now have a great responsibility to build an inclusive, and tolerant, and democratic Libya that stands as the ultimate rebuke to Gaddafi’s dictatorship.Obama horribly miscalculated this possibility. It was not just the Libyan people who achieved the defeat of Gaddafi -- the continued American presence in the country presented a difficult political problem, illustrated by the armed Libyans who both attacked and defended Americans throughout the film. class="pages"> https://pjmedia.com/blog/3-stunning-indictments-of-obama-and-hillary-in-benghazi-movie/ previous Page 1 of 3 next   ]]>
(Review Source)
PJ Media Staff
The Rosett Report It's almost two weeks since the release of "13 Hours," the movie about the Sept. 11, 2012 terrorist attacks in Benghazi, Libya, that killed four Americans. In the modern news cycle, that's time enough for the importance of this movie to be buried by news of the blizzard from which the East Coast is now digging out. But I found this movie so good that I went to see it twice.Both times, I came away wondering the same thing. What, precisely, was President Obama doing during the hours -- all those many hours -- in which the Americans in Benghazi, abandoned by their leaders in Washington, fought for their lives?What was Obama doing, amid the comforts and command centers of the White House, while State Department officer Sean Smith and Ambassador Chris Stevens were choking on the smoke of a diesel-fueled inferno at the poorly secured U.S. diplomatic compound in Benghazi? What was Obama doing during the hours in which the assault targeted the CIA annex near the compound? What was he doing when al Qaeda-linked terrorists fired mortars at the Americans defending the annex, killing former SEALs Glen Doherty and Tyrone Woods?Benghazi in that season was six hours ahead of Washington. The attacks began about 9:45 P.M. in Benghazi, and went on intermittently all night, with the deadly mortar assault coming at about 5:15 A.M. It took another five hours, and then some, before the last of the survivors, assembled at the airport, along with the bodies of the four dead Americans, were flown out of Benghazi -- not by American forces, but aboard a Libyan C-130 military cargo plane. Thus the roughly 13 hours referred to in the title of the movie, from approximately 9:45 PM on the evening of Sept. 11, until about 10:30 A.M on the morning of Sept. 12.In Washington, six hours behind, that timing corresponded to roughly 3:45 P.M. on Sept. 11 until 4:30 A.M., Sept. 12, with Americans killed during the first eight hours of this terrible span. When mortar fire killed Doherty and Woods, about 5:15 A.M. in Libya, it was about 11:15 P.M., Sept. 11, in Washington. In other words, on the White House clock, the assault in Benghazi began mid-afternoon, Washington time, and went on for the rest of the afternoon and the entire evening. It was close to midnight, Washington time, when the mortar onslaught killed Woods, who was based in Benghazi, and Doherty, who had flown in that night from Tripoli as part of a small rescue squad. They died as part of a small group of warriors defending the other Americans under attack.What was America's president doing, during all those hours? No one expects the U.S. president to involve himself directly in every firefight that might endanger Americans in far away places. But he is the commander-in-chief, the executive at whose desk the buck is supposed to stop. And there was nothing ordinary about what happened in Benghazi. The symbolically loaded date was Sept. 11. The first target was an American diplomatic compound, which was hit with AK-47 fire and rocket propelled grenades, invaded, plundered and torched with diesel fuel -- killing the ambassador and one of his staff. The next target was a nearby "secret" CIA annex, housing Americans. While far from U.S. shores, what took place in Benghazi was a brazen, heavily armed, terrorist assault on America and its citizens. It was the first time in 33 years that an American ambassador had been murdered. class="pages"> https://pjmedia.com/claudiarosett/13-hours-in-benghazi-and-the-still-missing-white-house-timeline/ previous Page 1 of 2 next   ]]>
(Review Source)
PJ Media Staff
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
PJ Media Thursday’s Fox Business News Republican presidential debate in Charleston will likely overshadow Sunday’s Democratic debate in that same city.At least that’s the hope of Debbie Wasserman Schultz, a Hillary sycophant who chairs the Democratic National Committee. She has allowed only a half-dozen debates (recently on Saturday evenings). This is akin to the State Department releasing Hillary’s emails on Fridays. Both obfuscations are not working.It’s true that Martin O’Malley remains only a distraction, unless he finally challenges Hillary in an unlikely defining moment that goes viral. O’Malley barely qualified for this debate, which may be his last, so why not go for broke?Thus far, a comparatively vibrant O’Malley, 53, has barely confronted a relatively tired Hillary, 68. Along with NBC, the Congressional Black Caucus Institute sponsors this debate. And O’Malley is, after all, the former Maryland governor, and Baltimore’s riots led to O’Malley’s epiphany that “Black Lives Matter” (BLM) as he repudiated his presumed racist rant that “All Lives Matter.” And, as Donald Trump reminds us, BLM protestors seized the microphone from a docile Bernie Sanders.In all the pandering, perhaps Hillary on Sunday will reprise her jive-talk or maybe even black face. More seriously, expect Hillary, who, after discouraging polls on Tuesday, toughened her attack on Bernie’s voting record, to blame inner city black-on-black crime on soft-on-gun-control Sanders, who will respond with passionate indignation.The Congressional Black Caucus is in Hillary’s corner, but Sanders might bring up Bill Clinton’s mass incarceration policies, which the Clintons now disown. Reacting to Tavis Smiley, who said on Monday that on every economic issue black Americans under President Obama have lost ground on the economy, all three Democrats will blame Republicans, not Obama.The latest polls show that Sanders could win Iowa, especially if he draws new voters. An Iowa victory would ensure that Vermont’s Sanders wins neighboring New Hampshire, where he already is leading. Those results would give Sanders momentum -- even in the South.In an era of “Jeb” and “Hillary,” consider that delusional “Bernie” does not get it: if Hillary falters, party bosses will change the convention rules so that a late entrant -- Joe Biden, Elizabeth Warren, or John Kerry -- could be the nominee. Biden’s praise two days ago for Bernie’s “authenticity” over Hillary on economic issues is further evidence he sees Bernie as a possible stalking horse. Nonetheless, Bernie now thinks he can win, so look for him to be more aggressive in Sunday’s debate, especially as he responds in kind to Hillary’s attacks.Beyond the debate, Hillary is under siege. Developing issues will affect general election polls, effectively helping Sanders claim he would be a better candidate in November.(1) Benghazi and mistrust of Hillary. Benghazi is not an issue for Democrats, but trust does affect independents. This week, 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi opens in theaters. It doesn’t mention Hillary, but it will impact her, especially among younger voters. And remember, Charles Woods, the father of Navy SEAL Ty Woods (who was killed at Benghazi), says Hillary lied to him at Andrews Air Force Base on the arrival of his son’s casket. Even if O’Malley does not mention the movie or Woods in Sunday’s debate , Benghazi will not go away. class="pages"> https://pjmedia.com/blog/hillary-under-siege/ previous Page 1 of 2 next   ]]>
(Review Source)
The Weekly Standard Staff
Hollywood Gets Benghazi Right
(Review Source)
John Nolte
The first trailer for Michael Bay's movie 13 Hours, based on a first-person account of the attack on the U.S. mission in Benghazi, was released Tuesday. Many sites—including Breitbart News—posted the trailer, but Vox went well beyond that, offering a 1,500-word review of the two-minute clip.
(Review Source)
The Weekly Substandard Podcast
...Hillary's Failed Foreign Policy
(Review Source)
John Hanlon
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
We’re approximately one hundred days away from the 2016 presidential election. During that period, story there will be hundreds of candidate speeches, a seemingly endless series of commercials, and at least three debates. But in the midst of the campaign, there will also... <img src="http://www.johnhanlonreviews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Southside-with-You-Photo-270x400.jpg" type="image/jpeg"/>
(Review Source)
John Hanlon
It’s late July and the 2016 summer box office results are disappointing, approved to say the least. Find out why in our analysis below. Hollywood is having a rough summer at the box office. In fact, approved it’s been a terrible year for many high-budget, big-profile,... <img src="http://www.johnhanlonreviews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Hollywood-Summer-Slump-2016-270x377.jpg" type="image/jpeg"/>
(Review Source)
John Hanlon
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
In honor of Independence Day on Monday, we take a look at 10 great movies about American patriots from the past dozen years. On the 4th of July, it’s important to recognize the strength and resolve of the American spirit. At times, it may seem that Hollywood takes that idea... <img src="http://www.johnhanlonreviews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/07/Movies-American-Spirit-270x358.jpg" type="image/jpeg"/>
(Review Source)
John Hanlon
Oscar Nominations 2017 Ryan Gosling and Emma Stone in La La Land
Best motion picture of the year Arrival Fences Hacksaw Ridge Hell or High Water Hidden Figures La La Land Lion Manchester by the Sea Moonlight Achievement in directing Denis Villeneuve, case Arrival Mel Gibson, see Hacksaw Ridge Damien Chazelle, La La Land Kenneth Lonergan, Manchester by the Sea Barry Jenkins, Moonlight Performance by an actor […]
(Review Source)
John Hanlon
Oscars 2017 Full List of Winners
The names in bold were the winners of this year’s Academy Awards. Best motion picture of the year Arrival Fences Hacksaw Ridge Hell or High Water Hidden Figures La La Land Lion Manchester by the Sea Moonlight Achievement in directing Denis Villeneuve, for sale Arrival Mel Gibson, Hacksaw Ridge Damien Chazelle, La La Land Kenneth […]
(Review Source)
John Hanlon
The subject of what transpired on the night of September 11th 2012 in Benghazi, search Libya has been up for debate since that horrific day. In the debate about who was responsible for the attacks that left four people dead (including Ambassador... <img src="http://www.johnhanlonreviews.com/wp-content/uploads/2016/01/13-Hours-Movie-Poster-105x88.jpg" type="image/jpeg"/>
(Review Source)
Crosswalk
Movies John Krasinski takes on a decidedly different role from Jim in TV's The Office in the new film, 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi.]]>
(Review Source)
The Federalist Staff
This Friday, “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” will be released in theaters nationwide. The movie, based on the book “13 Hours” by Mitchell Zuckoff, is directed by Michael Bay and gives the public a chance to see one man’s take on what happened in Libya on September 11, 2012, when terrorists stormed our diplomatic compound and killed four Americans: Glen Doherty, Sean Smith, Ambassador Chris Stevens, and Tyrone Woods. The decision to make this movie and release it so widely was likely unpopular with the Democratic political establishment. While the film focuses on the events on the ground in Benghazi, it is bound to generate interest about what was happening back in Washington and what President Obama and his secretary of State, Hillary Clinton, might have done to prevent the loss of American lives. Certainly, it will add publicity to one of the Obama administration’s most public foreign policy debacles. For the first time in years, Hollywood is putting out a picture that might do some harm to the Democratic Party. No Free Speech Before an Election Thanks to our First Amendment, there is nothing the Obama administration can do about it. Government may not censor films about current events, politics, or any other subject even if they might affect an election. Indeed, they may not be censored even if they are designed to affect an election. Government may not censor films about current events, politics, or any other subject even if they might affect an election. That seems obvious to anyone with even a passing knowledge of our First Amendment, but the Supreme Court did not firmly decide this principle until 2009. That year, in a 5-4 decision, the court overturned a law in which Congress had granted the administration the power to censor just such a film. By one vote in Citizens United v. FEC, the Supreme Court struck down the government’s power to censor films or other publications intended to influence elections. In that case, the Federal Election Commission sought to uphold their power under the Bipartisan Campaign Reform Act of 2002 (BCRA) to limit communications close to the time of an election. Specifically, the FEC wanted the Supreme Court to turn back a challenge to their right to bar a group, Citizens United, from putting a film, “Hillary: The Movie,” and all advertising for it on the airwaves until after the 2008 election. The FEC believed it had the unprecedented power to censor the airwaves based on a BCRA provision that barred corporations or labor unions from spending money on “electioneering communications” (i.e., advertisements mentioning a candidate by name) for 60 days before a general election. Documentaries for the Left, But Not the Right Stretching “electioneering communications” to cover documentary films was not uncontroversial. Before the 2004 election, Citizens United had complained to the FEC that Michael Moore’s film “Fahrenheit 9/11” was just such a communication and, as it was released by a corporation rather than a campaign, it violated BCRA. They wanted Moore’s film (which he admitted he hoped would influence the 2004 election) shut down. The FEC declined to do so, holding that “the film, associated trailers and website represented bona fide commercial activity, not ‘contributions’ or ‘expenditures’” In the name of campaign finance reform, the United States government argued it could ban books. Figuring that if you can’t beat ‘em, join ‘em, Citizens United, a nonprofit corporation, started producing conservative documentary films in 2005. When they released “Hillary: The Movie” on DirectTV in 2008, they sought assurance that the standard the FEC had applied to Moore’s film in 2004 would apply equally to theirs. They asked the district court in Washington DC to declare that the relevant section of BCRA would be unconstitutional as applied to their film, and for an injunction preventing the FEC from so enforcing it. The district court saw things differently, and ordered summary judgment in the FEC’s favor, because the purpose of the film could only be “to inform the electorate that Senator Clinton is unfit for office, that the United States would be a dangerous place in a President Hillary Clinton world, and that viewers should vote against her.” At the oral argument on appeal, the Supreme Court justices probed the limits of the power the government claimed for itself, and questioned how it squared with the First Amendment. In one incredible back-and-forth, Chief Justice John Roberts asked Deputy Solicitor General Malcolm Stewart if there was “a 500-page book, and at the end it says, and so vote for X, the government could ban that?” Stewart’s response: yes. “Well,” he explains, “if it says vote for X, it would be express advocacy and it would be covered by the pre-existing Federal Election Campaign Act provision.” In the name of campaign finance reform, the United States government argued it could ban books. Citizens United Wasn’t Really about Corporations as People If you hadn’t heard this before, it is likely because Citizens United has been presented in the popular media as a case about the rights of corporations. Maybe in 2010, when the case was decided, you saw some opinion piece forwarded around Facebook that said “Today, the Supreme Court said corporations are people.” Certainly, you’ve heard talking points from Democratic politicians about the need to overturn Citizens United because of the dangerous new powers the court bestowed on Big Business. As early as 1936, the Supreme Court had held that newspapers, although they were corporations, were entitled to the protection of the First Amendment. In their lie, there is a kernel of truth. There was a corporation involved in the case: Citizens United, which claimed its film was protected speech under the First Amendment. But this is nothing new. As early as 1936, the Supreme Court had held that newspapers, although they were corporations, were entitled to the protection of the First Amendment (that case, Grosjean v. American Press Co., also involved a Democratic administration trying to silence unfavorable coverage). The principle was reaffirmed many times since then. Much of the unfavorable coverage of the court’s decision was carried in media outlets owned by for-profit corporations. Many were newspapers that, like Citizens United, make explicit endorsements of candidates before every election and do so under the protection of the First Amendment. Disenfranchising the Little Guys Imagine a world where the Supreme Court had ruled the opposite way in Citizens United. BCRA’s prohibition on corporations and unions spending money on electioneering communications would stand. But that would not likely be the end of it. Barred from speaking about politics at election time, corporations and unions would just have shifted their spending to political action committees (PACs), as many already do. Contribution limits to PACs would reduce their ability to publish their ideas to a wide audience, but there would still be campaign ads and films about candidates. Middle-class people who wanted to start an organization to pool their capital to compete would be barred from doing so. Further, nothing in BCRA could prevent a rich individual from buying ads or distributing movies that seek to influence elections. Donald Trump and Hillary Clinton could afford to run ads, as could rich donors from both parties. Corporations and unions could still run “issue ads,” which inform the public but do not mention a candidate by name. Middle-class people who wanted to start an organization to pool their capital to compete would be barred from doing so. Surely the Democratic Congress elected in 2009 would not have let this stand. With the ability to censor corporate and union speech now embedded in case law, there would have been nothing stopping them from barring all corporate communication about election issues. Indeed, at oral arguments, Stewart suggested the definition of “express advocacy” could be drawn fairly widely: if the … narrator had said in the first 30 seconds of the film: A Hillary Clinton presidency would pose a danger to the country, it’s important for all citizens to vote against Hillary Clinton, what follows are extended analyses of episodes in her past that reflect Hillary Clinton’s unsuitability for that office. And if then in the last 89 minutes of the film the film-maker had made no overt reference to the upcoming election but had simply given a negative portrayal of Hillary Clinton, the person, that would be express advocacy that would be proscribable even without regard to BCRA. ‘13 Hours’ Would Have Been Under Scrutiny This brings us back to “13 Hours.” The film, distributed by Paramount Pictures (a for-profit corporation), by all accounts does not expressly advocate an opinion about Clinton or suggest that she is unfit for office. But the Obama administration’s opinion of its power under BCRA is so broad, it is not a great leap to suppose they would think any communication of important issues related to a candidate would constitute electioneering. Without Citizens United, nothing would stop Congress from further restricting the marketplace of political ideas. Would a Congress with the power to prohibit some corporate speech continue to allow other corporate speech based on the simple expedient the speaker of not expressly advocating for or against an individual candidate? Without Citizens United, nothing would stop them from further restricting the marketplace of political ideas. Whether they would or not, the Supreme Court agreed with the drafters of the First Amendment that Congress cannot be trusted to make that decision. The Bill of Rights was the first Congress’s way of limiting itself, reassuring the people of the new republic that the federal government would not ever be granted the power to take away those natural rights that are the birthright of a free people. By a 5-4 vote, those rights were upheld for another generation. If you choose to watch “13 Hours” this weekend, remember Citizens United, and how close we came to losing the right to make that choice. ]]>
(Review Source)
The Federalist Staff
In the opening sequence of “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi,” a security contractor bluffs his way out of a sticky situation on the streets of a violent city far, far from America, a city in which warring factions means the man facing him down could be an ally or could, just as easily, put a bullet in his head. “Look up,” the American says, “See the drone?” There is no drone. But the threat of a drone is enough, barely enough. This is the recurring theme of the film. A fading superpower trades on its still-existing military power while trying to figure out its purpose. Whatever movie audiences expected to emerge from Transformers director Michael Bay’s examination of the Benghazi debacle, it probably wasn’t this insightful war story about astonishing hubris on every level except the men who actually carry the guns. In action and depth, this film rivals recent greats such as “Black Hawk Down” and “Zero Dark Thirty.” What Happened in Benghazi On September 11, 2012, Libyan militia overwhelmed the American diplomatic compound in a small, violent city few in America could place on a map. Over the course of a single, long night, a small contingent of American contractors held off hordes of Libyan attackers. When the smoke cleared, four Americans were dead, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, and the bodies of Libyan fighters littered the countryside. When the smoke cleared, four Americans were dead. The movie tells the story from the vantage point of the American fighters: former military now hired as contractors to protect a Central Intelligence Agency base in Benghazi that, officially, does not exist. Jack (John Krasinski) arrives in Benghazi for his twelfth tour in a war zone. He joins his buddy Tyrone “Rone” Woods (James Dale) and strong men Tanto (Pablo Schreiber), Boon (David Denman), Tig (Dominic Fumusa), and Oz (Max Martini). A mile or so down the road from the secret CIA base, the Benghazi diplomatic compound represents the official face of America. The CIA is in Libya to monitor and do what it can to prevent the massive arms market that has exploded since the downfall of dictator Muammar Gaddafi. Powerful military weapons are auctioned to the highest bidder, which does not help the handful of men charged with protecting the base sleep at night. Chaotic, Middle Eastern Battle Scenes The action in the film, and most of it is battleground action, is fantastic. Very different in feel than the bombastic “Transformers,” it paces well and makes sense. The battle scenes are tense, dark, smoky, confusing, and realistic. Soldiers act like soldiers. The intense violence and language earn the film an R rating. There is no sexual content. When they were younger, they say, it was about being part of something bigger. Now they worry that something bigger is gone. The battles capture the chaos of the Middle East. In one scene, the Americans travel down a Benghazi street, passing militia with massive guns who may be allies, Libyan teenagers drawn toward gunfire for excitement, Libyan men watching a soccer match as the battle rages, and groups of men holding no visible weapons but the anger in their eyes. It is impossible to tell who is friendly, indifferent, or enemy. No one wears uniforms, few can be trusted. Some join the fight on the side of the Americans, others run away, some open fire. Bay makes sure in a touching scene that the audience realizes Libyan woman mourn their dead as much as any American. More than external confusion, though, the film captures the contractors’ internal confusion. Why are they there? Even as they chafe at institutional lethargy, conflicting mission values, and even indifference from the home front, they cannot seem to leave the battle to which they have given so many years of their lives. They talk about this during lulls in the fighting, marveling at how surreal it is that they should be fighting for their very lives in a place so irrelevant to so many of their countrymen. When they were younger, they say, it was about being part of something bigger. Now they worry that something bigger is gone. Yet what can be bigger than keeping weapons out of the hands of thugs and terrorists? Bigger than the hope on the face of Libyans who see in Ambassador Stevens a dream of the free, prosperous, secure country they have desired for so long? Bigger than saving American lives? America No Longer Protects Its Own They have not left the battle, but their superiors have. As they beg for air support and wait for the support that will never come, a U.S. drone circles overhead, watching, only watching. It streams real-time information to military brass on ships, to command centers at home, even to the terrified agents monitoring from inside the compound. People are dying, and the United States government is, simply, MIA. The film leaves it to you to draw conclusions. It shows hundreds of hostiles converging on the few brave men defending the base. It counts them, takes their heat signature, and analyzes their positions. But it never takes action, just watches. It is not clear in the movie whether the drone is even armed, which is exactly the point. It is never intended to aid, only to watch. The movie does not aim to score obvious political points. The president is referenced once in passing. Hillary Clinton is never mentioned, neither by name nor by office. In some ways, this makes a more powerful indictment, as their inaction and disinterest is reflected in every stand-down order given, every refusal to send a plane, every officer who denies authority to act. People are dying, and the United States government is, simply, MIA. The film leaves it to you to draw conclusions. In the film, the evacuation of Benghazi grows to symbolize America’s retreat from the world stage. Scarred and scared, shocked at failure despite constant warnings of the dangers facing them, traumatized by the battle they should have seen coming, America leaves Benghazi to its own devices. The children on the street wave goodbye, those who worked with the Americans return to their own homes, hundreds of thousands join a vigil to honor Ambassador Stevens, but it does not matter. America has gone home. ]]>
(Review Source)
The Federalist Staff
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
How many times have we heard that it is righteous and fair to dig into the minutia of a candidate’s personal past, no matter how small or seemingly trivial the issue or how mean-spirited and tendentious the investigation, because, after all, it “goes to character” and, as we all know, when it comes to a presidential candidate, character is everything. That’s why we need to know that 40 years ago Mitt Romney gave some guy an unwanted haircut, or that Ben Carson might be fibbing a bit about… whatever. Maybe we vote largely on policy or, as they say, an assessment as to which candidate is best for our wallet, but character is a deal-breaker. Bad character equals no vote, it is thought. Hence: Unleash the dogs of investigative journalism and lay bare as many foibles, peccadilloes, and bad grade-school report cards you can unearth. It goes to character. How much more do we need to see to know this notion is entirely preposterous? The only character issues most voters care about are the ones associated with the candidates they have no intention of voting for: Yes, those character flaws they care about. A lot. With candidates they support, not so much. With their own favorite, there is no limit to the amount of obvious bad behavior and despicable character traits they will engorge without even beginning to choke. Maybe it’s a matter of turning a blind eye, or rationalizing, re-framing, or putting one’s fingers in one’s ears and humming “Embraceable You,” but the goal is the same: Move on. (Hey, didn’t a website with that name spring forth for the explicit purpose of papering over one particular president’s slimy and probably felonious conduct?) The idea is to achieve stratospheric levels of high dudgeon about bad behavior in the guy you don’t support, while ignoring equally bad behavior, or worse, in the one you do, and by “guy” I mean Hillary. Or Donald. You get the idea. We’ve Ignored Bad Character for Decades Admittedly, and most certainly, it didn’t start with Hillary and Donald: Yes, William Jefferson Clinton may be many things, some of which are considered admirable, even presidential; but his behavior towards women, chronicled over and over for decades, shows he was (and probably still is), by even the most charitable analysis, a pig, everything mainline feminism has found repellent and execrable for 40 years, touching all the bases. Yet they voted for him, overwhelmingly. All three were given a pass by the majority of the electorate. Nixon may have profoundly improved the geopolitical landscape (a matter of continuing debate, but still), yet he was a twisted, petty man, overtaken by the irresistible tide of his own ugly vindictiveness. Not a nice man, you might say. He won in a landslide. Kennedy, we now know, was, among other things, essentially a prep-school advantaged pimp. To this day, he is revered. (Okay, not by everybody, but pretty much.) Three presidents, all men of very questionable “character,” as that term is customarily (and rather incessantly) applied in the context of presidential political gymnastics. No, that’s not all they were, but it is certainly part of what they were. All three were given a pass by the majority of the electorate, and they were given that pass for the same reason and in the same way Hillary and Donald are currently being given a “character” pass. That Brings Us to Hillary and Donald Does anyone—other than Hillary supporters—have the ability to un-see the completely obvious corruption, insider finagling, roaring personal ambition, arrogance, phony-baloney pandering, and habitual prevarication (okay, call it “Clintonian Parsing”) that has draped her entire career, a level of broad-based malfeasance that would not only disqualify anyone else for any public office, but most likely land him in the pokey? He is a guy willing to cut off the health insurance of a deathly ill infant nephew if it suits his purposes. Does anyone—other than Trump supporters—not understand that he has made his fortune by cynically buying off politicians to get them to put their thumbs on the scale, his scale; that, over and over he has shown a willingness to say or do anything to further his own personal interests, happy to roll over anyone or anything that stands in his way; that at his own father’s funeral all he could talk about was himself, that he is a guy willing to cut off the health insurance of a deathly ill infant nephew if it suits his purposes; that he is a nasty, mean-spirited bully obsessed with self-aggrandizement so rampaging that it is possible to imagine him doing just about anything, changing any position at any time, in order to get his next magazine cover; and that his level of debate discourse rises only insignificantly above “Your mother wears combat boots”? They don’t care. Or, more accurately, character only counts if it’s the other guy we’re talking about, and, even then, it only counts with people already inclined against the candidate, serving to deepen their antipathy, not create it. Try This Litmus Test Here’s a litmus test. Go see the movie “13 Hours,” Michael Bay’s gripping account of the events at Benghazi, as told by the people who were there and lived it. If you are not a Hillary supporter, here’s what you are going to be thinking. It was necessary to pretend the problem didn’t exist, to make sure nothing indicated otherwise, all to get Obama re-elected. You will experience a building fury at and loathing for Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama as you watch a magnificent American ambassador murdered and a group of stunningly heroic young Americans fight it out with no support. Your detestation will not only be fueled by the incompetence of the people these guys had every reason to believe would be there for them—but were not—it will be based upon your belief about why it happened, that it occurred two months before the end of a re-election campaign grounded in large part on the claim that Cool Hand Barack had smoothed the waters in the Middle East. That’s why the planes weren’t scrambled: To do so would etch in concrete actions whose authorization could only be accounted for if our adversaries were not “on the run,” not by a long-shot. That’s why there was no official response of any recordable type. It was necessary to pretend the problem didn’t exist, to make sure nothing indicated otherwise, all to get Obama re-elected. If you are not a Hillary supporter, you have not one scintilla of doubt that for the same reason, for purely partisan and self-serving electoral purposes, she promulgated the “video tape” hooey, calculatingly and cynically foisted a bald-face fable on the American public, and lied to the families of the men who died. That notion, as you watch the movie, is nauseating, literally. Yes, that’s what you’re thinking if you’re not a Hillary supporter. If you are a Hillary supporter, here’s what you’re thinking. That Michael Bay is a conservative hack with a long history of producing hyper-patriotic drivel. You can’t take it seriously; it’s propaganda. It’s a typical pre-election hit-job on Hillary, engineered by the vast right-wing conspiracy. Poor Hillary: What she doesn’t have to put up with… Donald Trump: The Man Who Makes Money From Nothing Trump, for his part, has made long strides and accomplished astonishing things by relentlessly and almost obsessively finding ways to convince people that he is a much bigger deal than he actually is. Read “The Art of the Deal” and you’ll see that even he, himself, makes no bones about that: It’s the core of the game. What Trump actually does is less important that what he can make people believe he has done. Along the way, Trump figured out something that has become not only his hallmark, but makes Trump Trump, and it is that what you actually do is less important that what you can make people believe you have done. That belief can be turned into increasing credibility, opportunity, and money, step by step, until you reach the ultimate, the Elysian fields of hot-air-based success: The ability to be paid for doing nothing. That is exactly where Trump is right now. Everything he set out to do—disengaging revenues from accomplishment—has been achieved. Most of his income now derives from nothing more than licensing his name, which is to say, taking a cut of what other people charge folks who mistakenly believe Trump has anything to do with anything. He is making a huge fortune by allowing others to prey on the false belief that this project or that is a “Trump” project, with all that implies, and it implies the kind of overblown illusion of Trumpian greatness that he has spent a lifetime constructing (literally and figuratively). This, despite the fact that he now has little or nothing to do with these projects that are being sold under his name. He no longer needs to do anything or risk anything. This is a pretty good gig, and you have to hand it to him. You don’t, however, have to elect him president, and you don’t have to make it into something it is not. It is opportunism and self-dealing writ on a scale so large that it can be a little hard to see for what it is, and while it tells you a great deal about what he is prepared to do for himself, it tells you nothing about what he can actually be relied on to do for you, if what you want him to do conflicts in the slightest way with what he wants to do for himself. Try Swapping Names with Characters None of this matters to their respective supporters. Character doesn’t count; maybe we don’t vote our wallets, or even our hearts. Maybe even ideology doesn’t hold the day. There’s plenty of evidence that Trump is the furthest thing from a true conservative and may be, in fact, an utterly shameless and thoroughly pragmatic panderer willing to change any stripe at any time if it suits his purpose. But plenty of conservatives are in his corner, foursquare, you betcha. What if it was Hillary and not Trump who had spent a lifetime greasing politicians of every persuasion? Here’s the irony, and perhaps the saddest part of all: If you play the substitution game and swap character flaws between candidates, the hypocrisy becomes glaring. Sure, the Clintons have gone from selling the Lincoln Bedroom during Bill’s tenure to selling the State Department during Hillary’s, engineering what is undoubtedly the largest influence-peddling scheme in the history of the planet, and her supporters have little or nothing to say about it. What if it was Trump who did that? What if it was Trump and not Hillary who did this to Kathleen Willey? What would they have to say, then? The world would see the most sustained explosion of righteous indignation ever recorded. What if it was Hillary and not Trump who had spent a lifetime greasing politicians of every persuasion to get them to provide the abatements and favors that made her whole empire possible, who adopted any policy or political position one day if it suited and the opposite the next, and who, when running into trouble, declared bankruptcy after bankruptcy, and who never passed on an opportunity to go for the jugular with sleazy personal attacks? What would Trump’s supporters have to say about that behavior if it was in Hillary’s resume instead of The Donald’s? Resentment Is No Way to Build a Life We all know what the answer is: There is a kind of dishonesty, a willful obliviousness, that is unseemly no matter which side of the political spectrum embraces it. That’s why we might have to simply accept the fact that in our day, until further notice, character doesn’t matter, nor does policy or even one’s wallet. Maybe we’ve reached the point where the only thing that matters, the only thing driving the votes of the great, heaving majority of voters is bile. In our day, until further notice, character doesn’t matter, nor does policy or even one’s wallet. Hillary spends all day every day validating the perceived victimhood of her constituency, promising to stick it to the bastards who have engineered their misery—you know, the fat cats who have caused them to be completely incapable of affecting their own circumstances in any positive way: It’s not your fault, and I’m going to make the people who did it to you pay. Trump taps into the seething resentment of people who go about their lives treating people fairly, working hard and trying to be decent citizens, and for their trouble are painted as racist, greedy, uncaring. unenlightened Yahoos. They are sick unto death of it and willing to overlook everything, or anything, if their guy is going to stand up and punch the bullies in the nose. It’s of a piece; it’s not good, and to move beyond it we’re going to have to get smarter, fairer, more respectful of our opposites—and very, very lucky. ]]>
(Review Source)
Crosswalk
Movies DVD Release Date: June 7, 2016Theatrical Release Date: January 15, 2016Rating: R (for strong combat violence throughout, bloody images, and language)Genres: Action, Drama, ThrillerRun Time: 144 minutesDirector: Michael BayCast: John Krasinski, James Badge Dale, Max Martini, Pablo Schreiber, Toby Stephens, David Costabile, Matt Letscher, Dominic Fumusa, Alexia Barlier You remember 2012, right? So you’ll understand why real estate professional Jack Silva (John Krasinski, Big Miracle) had to take another job. Leaving his wife and small daughters behind, Jack joins his old friend Tyrone "Rone" Woods (James Badge Dale, World War Z) as part of a six-man team of elite ex-military operators assigned to protect the CIA at a secret location in Benghazi, Libya as part of the CIA's Global Response Staff (GRS). Related: John Krasinski Tells Crosswalk What it Meant to Portray Jack Silva 2012 was not a good year in Libya, either. "It's hard to tell the [expletive deleted] good guys from the bad guys," Rone tells his newly-arrived buddy. He's not kidding: they all look alike and when a bunch of guys show up waving weapons it's hard to know whether to shake their hands or shoot them on sight. While other countries' embassies had already pulled out of Libya by this time, U.S. Ambassador Chris Stevens (Matt Letscher) was still optimistically trying to build relationships, the "foundations of diplomacy." A likeable guy, Stevens popped in for what was meant to be a low-key visit to Benghazi. And that's when things went horribly wrong.SEE ALSO: American Sniper an Important, Harrowing Account of Modern Warfare's Toll googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-1'); }); As the title suggests, the story takes us on an almost hour-by-hour recap of the events of September 11, 2012. If it weren't so tragic it would be a comedy of errors. Not enough security, too much bureaucracy, and a bunch of angry men with weapons are a recipe for disaster. When the embassy outpost was attacked they called for help—but help was a long time coming. If it hadn't been for the GRS team acting against their orders, help wouldn't have come at all. While the movie itself is not thirteen hours long, it sometimes feels that way. True to form, director Michael Bay (Pain & Gain) tells the story in a jumpy, often confusing way, but it (mostly) works. Art imitates life here; both the situation and virtually everyone involved in it were confused. Related: Meet the Real-Life Military Heroes of 13 Hours While the honor and bravery of the GRS team is definitely inspiring, 13 Hours is not likely to engender any warm feelings about the U.S. government's actions (or lack thereof). The CIA comes across as basically useless; Base Chief Bob (David Costabile, The Bounty Hunter) doesn't want the security team there in the first place because "there's no real threat here." He sure doesn't want them to blow the cover of the CIA's "secret" location by racing off on a rescue mission, particularly since he can't get anyone to authorize it. Meanwhile, Agent Jillani (Alexia Barlier) appears to have been given screen time only to provide the movie with a token female.SEE ALSO: Mind of a Soldier Explored Inside The Hurt Locker Since you'll be in the theater for almost three hours (allowing time for previews), it's a good thing this film is visually stunning. The scenery alone is breathtaking, but some of the close-ups are exceptional, especially in contrast to the big picture. As any action movie-goer knows, explosions can be beautiful, and there are plenty of them. The film score hits all the right notes, too; often going unnoticed, it adds depth to the anguish when the time comes to mourn. This being an election year and all, it's hard to miss the political overtones: Hilary Clinton, Secretary of State at the time, is not part of the film but her role in the actual events has been much discussed. There's a scene showing Muslim men at prayer with their weapons propped up along the walls of the mosque that's likely to raise a few hackles, as well. Politics aside, 13 Hours is violent and sometimes bloody. It's long and occasionally slow. The language is on the profane side (though doubtless mild by combat standards). A lot of people die. But it's also a true story; the film is based on the book 13 Hours by New York Times bestselling author Mitchell Zuckoff and members of the security team who lived those hours. Against overwhelming odds, these brave men risked their lives to protect their fellow Americans. And that deserves to be celebrated. CAUTIONS (may contain spoilers):SEE ALSO: Pain & Gain: Lots of the First, None of the Second googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-2'); }); if (gptClientWidth >= 992 && gptClientWidth <= 1000000) googletag.cmd.push(function() { googletag.display('gpt-ad-3'); }); Drugs/Alcohol: Several characters drink alcohol. A group of men is shown smoking a hookah. Language/Profanity: The f-bomb is dropped regularly but not as often as one might expect; other common profanities make an appearance. Jesus’ name is used at least once. A one-finger salute Violence:  This is basically a war movie; people are shot, blown up, and so on. People are attacked or threatened on multiple occasions. Guns, knives, heavy weapons, car crashes, and so on all come into play. There are also a few moments of the ‘blood spurting’ variety but the gore is kept to a minimum. Sex/Nudity:  One man describes how he and his buddies rubbed their sexual organs on the hat of another man they didn’t like. There’s a video of mating rabbits (I’m still not sure why). Several men are shown shirtless, one in tiny shorts, with occasional close ups on bulging muscles. Spiritual Themes: One character reads Joseph Campbell, whose quote “All the gods, all the heavens, all the hells, are within you.” comes up in conversation more than once. One team member says he’s not afraid when the shooting starts because “as long as I’m doing the right thing God’ll protect me.” Publication date: January 15, 2016 ]]>
(Review Source)
Armond White
Michael Bay and Adam McKay both miss what’s important. Neither an exoneration of Hillary Clinton nor a clear explanation of the events of September 11, 2012, which left four Americans dead at the U.S. embassy in Libya’​s capital, Michael Bay’s 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi is something political pundits almost never understand: It’s a movie. Bay focuses on five former military contractors assigned to protect CIA officers at an annex to the U.S. embassy, who eventually fight off marauding Libyan rebels. In these profiles in courage, actors portray real-life figures (some of them former Navy SEALs) Tyrone “Rone” Woods (James Badge Dale), Kris “Tanto” Paronto (Pablo Schreiber), Dave “Boon” Benton (David Denman), John “Tig” Tiegen (Dominic Fumusa), and Mark “Oz” Geist (Max Martini). Bay adds a sixth figure, the fictional Jack Silva (John Krasinski), who joins their muscular elite. He is both “brother” (as the former G.I. Joes address one another) and audience-surrogate. On these terms, 13 Hours is undeniably superficial — not an explicitly political film or a factual historical account. Action director Bay works “apolitically,” which is a more complicated circumstance than partisan pundits may be willing to comprehend. The economic motivations of Hollywood make it unlikely that a mainstream movie will dare indulge in political controversy. (Remember how Clint Eastwood played both sides of the aisle in American Sniper?) Historical tragedies usually make it to the screen through sentimental pandering, and that is the case with 13 Hours: Action-movie suspense is combined with stereotypical tough-guy heroism. Even that simplification has its political aspects, although most pundits customarily praise or condemn movies according to what fits their political bias. (Remember how discussions of Zero Dark Thirty ricocheted across both sides of the aisle?) But since many filmgoers are reluctant to consider that all cinema is ideologically loaded (“It’s just a movie!” fanboys insist), 13 Hours can be sold as an “important” action movie without actually saying anything important. Vague introductory titles assert that Libya’s strongman, Moammar Gaddafi, was “deposed.” In a TV clip, President Obama proclaims the end of a “long and painful chapter for the people of Libya” — conveniently disconnecting U.S. policy from regime change there and setting out Libya’s political chaos as a “turf war” among unspecified factions with American onlookers stuck in the middle. (function($){ var swapArticleBodyPullAd = function() { if ($('body').hasClass('node-type-articles')) { var $pullAd = $('.story-container .pullad').addClass('mobile-position'); if (window.matchMedia("(min-width: 640px)").matches) { if ($pullAd.hasClass('mobile-position')) { $pullAd .addClass('desktop-position') .insertBefore('.article-ad-desktop-position'); } } else { if ($pullAd.hasClass('mobile-position')) { $pullAd .addClass('mobile-position') .insertBefore('.article-ad-mobile-position'); } } } }; $(window).on('resize', function(){ swapArticleBodyPullAd(); }).resize(); })(jQuery); Bay is not of the Eisenstein, Pontecorvo, or Costa-Gavras politically motivated school that dramatizes ideological cause and effect. Bay and screenwriter Chuck Hogan avoid depicting the details that led to the death of Ambassador Chris Stevens. “We didn’t hear any protests,” one soldier says. “It was on the news,” another responds — conveniently glossing over the Obama administration’s convoluted propaganda war that first blamed the attack on an American-made Islamophobic video. Stevens (portrayed by actor Matt Letscher) is respectfully described as “the real deal, a true believer, here to win hearts and minds.” From that “due diligence” pretense, Bay proceeds to do his ad man’s thing. In the same way that Bay’s 2001 Pearl Harbor used history for a pseudo-patriotic blockbuster extravaganza, 13 Hours applies an advertising man’s delirium to the depiction of political turmoil. Whatever political-social comment on the Benghazi locale there is in this movie is presented through visual koans: Ambassador Stevens enjoying a large, blue swimming pool, Libyan kids playing on a rusted car hood, rebels shooting holes in an American flag (seen from on high in typical Bay-vision). Adducing these images never leads one to a political assessment. Yet, finally, when the embassy compound is under fire, Bay shifts gears and does a 360 circling of the rainbow-hued siege: An interior shot shows Stevens and staffer Sean Smith fleeing beneath a ceiling of flames. And among the waves of combatants, a video insert of the black ISIS flag can be glimpsed while ammo flashes punctuate the fighting. How else would Hollywood make a contemporary war movie when our media culture routinely dissociates itself from military purpose and commitment? Since Vietnam, Hollywood always looks at the military with either skepticism or contempt for what it stands for. Bay has inherited this cynicism, but, as an advertising aesthete whose fascination with technology has provoked snotty condescension from liberal critics loath to admit their secret regard for materialism and industry, he exults in the paradox of action-movie extravagance. Bay’s real motivation here is revealed when one soldier says the Libyan raiders are coming from “Zombieland,” and, aiming his weapon, shouts: “I feel like I’m in a fucking horror movie!” More Movies Mark Ruffalo vs. White ‘Conservative’ Women The Mummy Unwrapped: American Guilt and Masochism There’s Still Life in The Mummy Bay illustrates the excessive violence of war in imagery that recalls Vittorio Mussolini’s infamous poetry describing bombs as “budding roses.” The best scenes in 13 Hours occur when Bay imagines warfare as spectacle. Soldiers caught behind a windshield during a street standoff take point-blank gunfire in a montage that would do Eisenstein or Peckinpah proud. In a rooftop bombardment, a barrage of mortar shells raises sparks that ignite into star-like twinkles — in dazzling real time. The audience I saw the film with was stunned by this, but I swear all Madison Avenue will gasp. This is the opposite of peacenik imagery — which doesn’t mean Bay is a fascist warmonger, but it makes his appreciation for fighting men’s bravery more convincing than 13 Hours’s superficial characterizations. Bay’s imagery externalizes the men’s stress as it also visualizes wonder, and this works better than the film’s mawkish view of military heroism, which conservative viewers should not fall for too easily. Krasinski’s Silva repeats a passage from Joseph Campbell’s The Power of Myth, which he and his post-9/11 fighter buddies read as religiously as soldiers in WWII movies read the Bible: “All the gods, all the hells, all the heavens are within you.” Worse than warmongering, this nods to the nihilism of post–Iraq War films like The Hurt Locker that demonize soldiers as psychopaths. In an after-battle scene, Bay contrasts a bullet-ridden American flag in a ditch with scenes of Libyan women in black reclaiming the bodies of dead jihadis. Like other post–Iraq War Hollywood movies, 13 Hours tries to have it both ways. *      *      * Hollywood often pays “Support Our Troops” lip service to soldiers, but the industry’s real heroes are hustlers, which explains the unfathomable acclaim for The Big Short. Adam McKay’s satire about the 2008 stock-market crash completes an impulse he first showed in an angry animated sequence in The Other Guys. Now he’s gotten sanctimonious: His white-collar cast keeps overexplaining the crash (a “short” is an investment bet that depends upon a stock’s losing value), then sentimentalizes the crooks who should have known better. Steve Carell, who throws off every drama he makes, plays hedge-fund manager Mark Baum, who represents McKay’s obnoxious moral center along with Christian Bale as an autistic Wall Street whiz, Michael Burry. Clearly, McKay has no real moral compass. His quick-cut visual metaphors, celebrity cameos (Margot Robbie, Richard Thaler, Selena Gomez), inexactitude, and flippancy suggest a disastrously failed Altman panorama. McKay shows no ethics-based approach to greed, only class sarcasm, self-pity, and snide judgment. These narrative tactics combined with inanity show the influence of Michael Moore’s supercilious moralizing. The Big Short’s superficial cynicism concludes with a Haruki Murakami quote: “Everyone deep in their hearts is waiting for the world to end.” McKay is so smug in his self-righteousness (typical liberal arrogance) that he lacks a genuine sense of tragedy. The chatter, the explanations, the cartoon doodles and celebrity asides are nonstop and tedious. McKay can’t even resist interrupting Mark Baum’s grandstanding mea culpa with another narrative tangent. When not sarcastic, McKay is maudlin, with no capacity for empathy. “All the people I respected won’t talk to me anymore except through lawyers,” Baum says. That’s modern Hollywood in a nutshell. No wonder The Big Short has gotten five Oscar nominations. — Armond White, a film critic who writes about movies for National Review Online, received the American Book Awards’ Anti-Censorship Award. He is the author of The Resistance: Ten Years of Pop Culture That Shook the World and the forthcoming What We Don’t Talk about When We Talk about the Movies.   ]]>
(Review Source)
Armond White
Armond WhiteMoviesmilitary “I love a man in a uniform,” sang the post-punk British band Gang of Four. That highly danceable tune about political and romantic indoctrination could as well be the theme song of the new Michael Bay movie 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi. It’s the secret in the subtitle that intrigues. 13 Hours pays homage to the team of elite contractors—former Navy SEALS—who defended the U.S. Embassy and a nearby CIA annex on September 11, 2012. Four Americans died in that tragedy, including Ambassador Chris Stevens, but the film doesn’t specifically detail that (or the political controversy surrounding the circumstances of the terrorist siege). It’s really your basic action movie, turning political tragedy into escapism and using speed, energy, strength, force, and courage as romanticized definitions of masculinity. In other words, the actors portraying Tyrone “Rone” Woods (James Badge Dale), Kris “Tonto” Paranto (Pablo Schreiber), Dave “Boon” Benton (David Denman), John “Tig” Tiegen (Dominic Fumusa), Mark “Oz” Geist (Max Martini) and Jack Silva (John Krasinski) are hot. But 13 Hours isn’t just a testosterone strut down a cat walk. It enshrines a specific type of hypermasculinity as a principle of camaraderie and that makes it gay. “There’s something to be said for the life of men among men,” Marlon Brando memorably said with a southern twang as gay Army Major Pendleton in Reflections in a Golden Eye. Who ever tweeted the scurrilous lie that the lumbersexual beard was on its way out will have to delete that tweet after seeing 13 Hours. The elite soldiers’ facial hair is part of their government-issue sexiness. It’s a visible passcode that denotes their training, camaraderie and fidelity; the common bond, like the patriotic bond, that each of them will fight for and commit to sacrifice. A clean-cut, pants-creased soldier (squaddie, private or gunner) is also a man to respect but 13 Hours’ bearded tribe denotes a measure of experience. In contrast to the Harvard-grad CIA wonks they’re assigned to protect, these grunts are lions. The look of scruff has a sensual quality, alternately rough or soft. Matched to their forceful, disciplined movements and purposed virility this new militarized look provides a sense of character—personality through iconography. They’re all tough looking (even Krasinski, hulkish after from his role on The Office, has man-upped). Still, they're all boys together. The best part of their camaraderie is the jokes they exchange, the confidences they share, the harmony of tenor and bass. Aside from Michael Bay’s amazing, pyrotechnic battle scenes, the best moment in the film comes as Silva watches the short Libyan aide Amal (Peyman Moaadi) put on a helmet, carry a gun, and timidly join the fight. Silva’s look of concern proves irresistible masculine sensitivity. Long-faced, square-jawed Schreiber as Tonto has jock magnetism—the kind that distracts. His relationship to Amal is expressed in a line that is humorous yet heartfelt: “I’m gonna have to break-up with him.” The round of laughter that follows is not from macho bullies but a compassionate, cross-cultural, sexually-open brotherhood. 13 Hours could almost be recruiting poster propaganda. Hollywood’s post-Vietnam attitude toward the military is usually skeptical yet the social option it offers has been real and admirable, especially since the armed forces opened-up after DADT. The repeal of DADT in 2011 also gave access to the role of the soldier for actors to portray with fresh sensitivity. During downtime, the fighters in 13 Hours watch Robert Downey, Jr. in Tropic Thunder deliver the comic routine “I know who I am. I’m just a guy playing a dude disguised as another dude”—and they all repeat the line. It’s double-edged: embracing the institution as a personal right and also embracing military drag without losing a sense of self. In 13 Hours, these living breathing G.I. Joes are more than just politically correct, they’re also anatomically correct dolls. 13 Hours is out in theaters today. Watch the trailer below: ]]>
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Michael Medved
http://www.michaelmedved.com/wp-content/uploads/Micheal-Medved-Review-13-Hours-The-Secret-Soldiers-of-Benghazi.mp3
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Plugged In
WarAction/AdventureDrama We hope this review was both interesting and useful. Please share it with family and friends who would benefit from it as well.Movie ReviewWe all know about brave men and women in uniform—the soldiers, sailors and airmen who serve in the Armed Forces. They serve their country, often with distinction, putting their lives on the line for the good of the nation and its interests. When they come home, they’re greeted with flags and honors. If they’ve been hurt, they’re given help to get better. And if they sacrifice their lives for their country, their loss is mourned deeply. But there are other patriots who serve even though they no longer wear an official military uniform. These contract soldiers, who work for the CIA’s Global Response Staff, aren’t SEALs or Rangers or Marines anymore, but their experience makes them valuable—and flexible—commodities. They’re not given orders to land in the world’s hot spots; they're hired to go to those places. And they go wherever they’re paid to be, be it Tel Aviv or Timbuktu, Beirut or Benghazi. They don’t come home to cheering crowds. Sometimes they don't come home at all. Jack, one such GRS contract soldier, arrives in Libya at a difficult time. Strongman Muammar Gaddafi has been deposed and killed. Factions squabble for power. Islamic extremists are making deep inroads across the country, and Americans are not always welcomed. But with tension comes opportunity, and the United States sees plenty of it. The CIA has set up shop in Benghazi, operating out of a not-so-secret compound. Ambassador Christopher Stevens is coming to visit, too, with an eye toward opening regular diplomatic channels with the country. U.S. bigwigs would love to squelch the illegal weapons trade there and foster forces more friendly to America. But to do that, they need people on the ground. And those people need protection. That’s why Jack’s there. Same with Tig and Tanto, Oz and Boon. Tyrone Woods, nicknamed Rone, leads them—assigning guards and drivers for CIA agents. And while the ambassador has his compound and employs his own guards, Rone, Jack and the rest of the guys will be just a few dusty streets down should they ever need assistance. Or so they all assumed. On Sept. 11, 2012, the ambassador’s compound comes under attack by dozens of angry, armed Libyans. By dawn the next morning, four Americans are dead, including the ambassador. The events of that night, and those leading up to it, have been the topic of a great deal of discussion, much of it politically charged. But Jack and his fellow contractors—these un-uniformed soldiers who put their lives on the line that strange, chaotic night—know what truly went on.Positive ElementsWhile 13 Hours chronicles a difficult chapter in American history, there’s much more to it than just the tragic loss of four American lives. “Bottom line, this is inspirational,” said director Michael Bay at a press conference attended by Plugged In. The movie is based on a book of the same name, which in turn was based on the stories of these so-called “secret soldiers,” the contract guards, who lived through it. Bay’s mission was simply to tell the story of that violent night (stripped of its political aftermath). And while there are allusions to where things went wrong—a lack of adequate protection at the outset, American dithering during the attacks—the prime focus here is on the heroism of the people on the ground. “A lot of positive things came out of that night,” Kris “Tanto” Paronto said at the press conference. The six GRS contract soldiers at the core of the story are more than a team: They’re a makeshift family, each willing to put his life on the line for his fellow warriors. All six risk their lives to save the CIA agents they're assigned to, of course; it’s what they’re paid to do, after all. But they go above and beyond as well—doing their best to rescue the ambassador and the rest of his staff. And while four people died during the attacks in Benghazi, dozens of lives were also saved, thanks to the skill, dedication and teamwork of these professional defenders. We also get glimpses of other good people at work, too. Ambassador Stevens is called a “true believer,” someone who hopes trust and friendship might foster a better Libya and, by extension, a more secure Middle East. “Relationships between people is the real foundation for democracy,” he says to a group of Libyans. A brave Libyan interpreter stays with his CIA employers through thick and thin, and other Libyans volunteer to fight alongside the Americans (though sometimes, these fighters are acting duplicitously). Spiritual ContentMilitant Islam is, of course, at the root of the problems chronicled in 13 Hours. Islamic extremists were behind the attacks, and we see many Muslims in the act of prayer as their weapons rest against walls nearby. We hear calls to prayer and, ominously, they go silent all at once—a harbinger, Tanto thinks, of another attack. The movie references the controversy over what supposedly started the attacks: a spontaneous reaction to a YouTube trailer for the movie Innocence of Muslims. One of the GRS employees says that he saw on American news that the attacks were connected with huge demonstrations against the movie. “I didn’t see any demonstrations,” Tanto says, confused. In the film's credits, we see how an estimated 100,000 Muslims grieved the attacks, mourned Stevens’ death and held signs apologizing for the extremists' violent acts. Islam is not the only religion represented in the movie, however. During a lull in the action, Tanto voices his belief that the Almighty is watching him, saying, “As long as I’m doing the right thing, God will protect me.” Then he adds, “That’s crazy, right?” When one of the warriors dies in combat, another says a quick prayer over the body. “God, watch over him,” we hear. “Guide him where he needs to be. Take care of his family.” When help finally arrives, another contractor says, “Oh Lord, oh Jesus,” in thanksgiving. Someone suggests ordering a flyby of F-16s in order to put “the fear of God and the United States” into the terrorists. A line from Joseph Campbell’s The Power of Myth is mentioned several times: “All the gods, all the heavens, all the hells are within you.” Sexual ContentTwo contract soldiers pretend to flirt with Sona, a chilly FBI agent. Someone watches a YouTube clip of rabbits having sex, and there's also a joke about sheep mating. We hear crude references to the male anatomy and joking allusions to "bromances" and “spooning.”Recommended ResourceA Chicken's Guide to Talking Turkey With Your Kids About SexKevin LemanEven the bravest parents feel timid about discussing sex with their 8- to 14-year-olds! This resource offers reassuring, humorous, real-life anecdotes along with reliable information to help you with this challenging task.Buy NowViolent ContentThe 13 hours between nightfall on Sept. 11, 2012, and dawn the following day was filled with the sort of terror and death that those of us who've never been in combat can hardly imagine. Accordingly, the movie does its bloody best to replicate the horrors of that night. Dozens of people die, including four Americans. We see their bodies, and watch one as it’s pushed unceremoniously off a rooftop. Other men are horrifically injured. One had much of his forearm nearly taken off by a mortar blast, and we see it hanging from the rest of his arm by tenuous tendrils of flesh. Another suffers a compound fracture, and the bone juts from the body as blood squirts from the wound. Dozens of Libyan terrorists get gunned down, sometimes dying instantly (and bloodily) via shots to the head or chest. After the battle, wives and mothers run to the dead bodies, crying and mourning. Bombs go off. An armored vehicle rumbles through the street, peppered with bullets, dodging explosions and finally arrives in the compound with a flaming flat tire. Libyans everywhere are carrying guns—a really tricky situation, because the contractors can’t always tell who’s a friend, who’s an enemy and who just happens to be carrying a gun. Military weapons are sold freely in an open-air market. The Ambassador’s residence is set on fire in an effort to flush out those inside.Crude or Profane LanguageAbout 75 f-words and more than 30 s-words. Other profanities include “a--,” “b--ch,” “d--n,” “h---” and “p-ss.” God’s name is misused at least 10 times, with about half of those instances getting paired with the word “d--n." Jesus’ name is abused about five times. We hear several crude references to testicles. Drug and Alcohol ContentCharacters drink beer. A contractor laments that his teenage daughter back home has apparently started drinking. Other Negative ElementsPeople vomit. Someone says he needs to urinate. ConclusionWhile the events in Benghazi were horrifically unique, 13 Hours is not, exactly, a unique movie. We’ve seen several similar “based on a true story” combat narratives in the last few years, from Black Hawk Down to Lone Survivor to American Sniper. And little wonder. These wartime tales are always grimly compelling. The action is relentless. And lots of viewers find these true-life combat stories informative and, of course, entertaining. But you get a different perspective when you talk with some of the real people involved. For Mark “Oz” Geist, John “Tig” Tiegen and Kris “Tanto” Paronto, 13 Hours is more than a movie. They lived through it. They watched friends die as the real battle unfolded. So often, onscreen casualties don’t feel like a big deal. We only know these unfortunate characters, after all, for a couple of hours before they’re gone. And, of course, we know they’re not really gone. Death isn’t real in the movies. But the characters in 13 Hours represent real people. Real casualties. Real loss. To hear Tanto talk about his fallen friends … well, it makes it feel disrespectful to munch popcorn while watching those deaths. Make no mistake: Oz and Tanto and Tig are glad Michael Bay made 13 Hours. After all, they helped him make it. They wanted this story told from their perspective, removed from domestic politics and cable-news bluster. They wanted it to be as true to life as possible. But it’s telling that Tig still hasn’t watched 13 Hours. The events in Benghazi still feel too raw for him. He worries he’d get angry all over again. And I can see why: 13 Hours is a well-made, violent, profane, difficult movie. The fact that it depicts real, important events makes it no less difficult. Pro-social ContentObjectionable ContentSummary AdvisoryPlot SummaryChristian BeliefsOther Belief SystemsAuthority RolesProfanity/ViolenceKissing/Sex/HomosexualityDiscussion TopicsAdditional Comments/NotesEpisode Reviews]]>
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Plugged In
What does it take to topple an utterly dominant, seemingly invincible galactic force? You need a vertically challenged, fast-talking cop, apparently. Oh, and maybe a very angry bear. After four weeks bestriding the box office charts like a colossus, Star Wars: The Force Awakens fell to third this weekend—slipping behind both the comedy Ride Along 2 and Oscar powerhouse The Revenant. Ride Along 2, starring Kevin Hart and Ice Cube, squealed its tires to an estimated $35.3 million payday over the regular three-day weekend—$41.6 million if you count ticket sales from Martin Luther King Jr. Day. That practically guarantees that I’ll be reviewing Ride Along 3 before too long. Lucky me. The Revenant, buoyed by 12 Oscar nominations (including ones for Best Picture, Best Actor and Best Director), held firm in second place, banking a $31.8 million. The brutal survival flick has already collected $97.2 million in its month-long run—and only two weeks in wide release—which makes the Best Picture Oscar derby this year feel surprisingly populist. Two Best Picture nominees have already crested the $100 million threshold (The Martian has earned $227.2 million; Mad Max: Fury Road $153.6 million), and The Revenant looks like it’ll join ’em by the time you finish this paragraph. Of course, the grosses from all the Best Picture nominees together wouldn’t equal what The Force Awakens has banked in its own five-week run. The latest Star Wars flick collected another $26.4 million to run its domestic record to a truly cosmic $858.5 million. It’s also banked more than $1 billion overseas now—only the fifth film in history to do so—bringing its overall grosses to a cool $1.872 billion. Disney may need to build its own Death Star just to hold all that cash. 13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi finished fourth with $16.2 million, while the Will Ferrell holdover Daddy’s Home closed out the Top Five with $9.5 million. ]]>
(Review Source)
Plugged In
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
When I speak to youth groups and churches on the subject of media discernment, I encourage audiences to consider asking themselves this question when making entertainment decisions: If Jesus and His 12 disciples were walking the face of this planet today—not 2,000 years ago—and one of His disciples, let’s say Matthew or Peter, came up to our Messiah and asked something along these lines, “Jesus, there’s this movie currently playing in the theater, should we load up the van and all go this weekend?” how would Jesus respond? This question, while necessary and helpful, still leaves a lot of gray area regarding how Christ might answer. So to make this mental exercise more practical, I often tweak the question just a bit: Suppose the film Peter is asking to see with the other 11 is reputed to be inspiring, encouraging and even uplifting, but contains two s-words, then how would Jesus answer? I follow up this second question with a reminder that the answers even strong believers will give can be polar opposites. Some will say, “If it’s just two harsh profanities, of course Jesus would go.” Others will say, “If it contains any profanities at all, I’m pretty sure Jesus would steer clear.” Who’s right? Tough inquiry, isn’t it? And we haven’t even begun to talk about violence, sexuality or drinking. Wrestling with questions such as this is my life’s calling, and an uncomfortable one at times. I’m a black-and-white sort of guy. Ask me if it’s ever OK for a couple to jump in bed outside of marriage, and I know the answer. Ask me if it’s ever OK for a person to get intoxicated (say at a wedding), and I know the answer to that one, too. The Bible’s quite clear on both of these issues. But ask me if a film is in-bounds or out-of-bounds due to a few harsh profanities, and I have to admit the Bible is silent. It talks about coarse talk coming out of our mouths. But what about hearing it at school or at work … or in a movie? A gray area indeed. Still, just because the Bible doesn’t contain a direct admonition such as, “Thou shalt never go see a horror film,” that shouldn’t keep us from asking the gray-area questions and grappling with seeking God’s heart on the matter. We still must be prayerful and intentional about following and obeying Christ even (perhaps especially) when the Bible offers no express guidance. Now, take my question above and go from two s-words to 75-100 f-bombs and ramped-up, R-rated violence (along the lines of American Sniper or 13 Hours), and re-ask the question. Because along these lines, sometime later this year or next, we at Plugged In (and you, the American moviegoer) will be wrestling with exactly that question regarding the movie Birth of a Nation. I caught this much buzzed-about motion picture at the Sundance Film Festival a couple of weeks ago, and I’ve thought a lot about it since. I think the movie will be a big hit when it releases and most likely will be nominated for several Oscars. While it’s easy for me to quickly answer the “Jesus and the disciples in the van” question when it comes to films like How to Be Single, Deadpool or Fifty Shades of Black (or Grey), I still wrestle with flicks such as The Finest Hours and Concussion. Would Jesus watch or skip? I have an opinion, for sure, but I’m not extremely confident that my opinion is “gospel.” Birth of a Nation is a rather unique film. Based on true events, it tells the story of Nat Turner, a slave and preacher who led a rebellion of his fellow slaves against their masters back in 1831. It’s kinda like the Exodus story found in the Bible with Turner being Moses. Except rather than just escaping their captors and heading for the Promised Land, the slaves heap vengeance upon their slave owners. Now, mind you, these slave owners were very bad dudes. But I, for one, wanted these slaves to slip away quietly to Canada. That’s not the way it happened. The film spends quite a bit of screen time showing several gruesome ways slaves killed their owners to get back at them for years of abuse. The film’ll be R-rated for sure. As I drive to work, I’ve been listening to a lot of the Bible on CD. Currently, I’m in the book of Isaiah, and I was re-struck with the portion of that book (Chapter 61) that Jesus read in a synagogue, applying the words to Himself. What’s more, as believers in the Messiah, I’m convinced the words also apply to me (and you). Isaiah tells us that we should be about setting the captives free. God is pleased when that happens. It’s something near and dear to His heart. So what if captive people set themselves free, as they did in history and do in this movie? I think God is pleased. But what if they take revenge after they’re no longer prisoners? Ah, now I think God frowns. And that’s where this film goes. So, is the film in-bounds or out-of-bounds? What would Jesus do? Would he have Matthew load the van? Or would the glamorization of vengeance cause our Savior to say, “Get thee behind me?” Your thoughts? ]]>
(Review Source)
Kyle Smith
benghazihillary clintonmichael bay Coming soon to a theater near you: the movie Hillary Clinton wishes didn’t exist. The trailer has just dropped for Michael Bay’s “13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi,” based on the book by Mitchell Zuckoff, which in turn is based on the eyewitness reports of five of the six CIA contractors present that night. The sixth, Tyrone Woods, perished in the battle. Due Jan. 15, “13 Hours” seeks to continue the winning streak of fact-based military movies released in January: Two years ago “Lone Survivor” attracted a huge audience, and this winter “American Sniper” ruled the box office. “13 Hours,” the book, trained its eye entirely on events on the ground in Benghazi, Libya, on the night of Sept. 11, 2012, when two CIA outposts were attacked by Islamofascist terrorists. It isn’t a political indictment of officials in Washington, and the movie appears to stick close to the style of the book. Unlike other films based on recent history that admit to fudging details for cinematic convenience, “13 Hours” boldly states — at least in its trailer — “this is a true story.” Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton testifies in 2014 before the Senate Foreign Relations Committee on the deadly 2012 attack on the US diplomatic mission in Benghazi, Libya.APThat story is that four Americans, including a US ambassador, died in an all-night terror attack, receiving no help from anyone in Washington. Then-Secretary of State Hillary Clinton isn’t expected to be a character in the film — but just as she is heading into the first primaries of the 2016 campaign, the nation will be reminded that she was in charge, that the administration in which she served tried to deflect blame onto an offensive anti-Muslim video that supposedly angered the militants, and that during congressional inquiries into the matter, she angrily tried to dismiss the whole thing out of hand, shouting, “What difference, at this point, does it make?” Attempts to sort out what happened during the confusing and secrecy-shrouded moving firefight in Benghazi are frequently derided as nutty “conspiracy theories,” but there’s no need to dream up any conspiracy — because the plain facts are horrifying enough. Brave Americans died, and Hillary Clinton — who in her 2008 campaign bragged of being the candidate with the wisdom and experience to take a dire 3 a.m. phone call — stayed out of it. The book, a note explains, “is not about what officials in the United States government knew, said or did after the attack, or about the ongoing controversy over talking points, electoral politics, and alleged conspiracies and coverups.” But Hillary Clinton wants everyone to shut up about the basic intelligence and security failure that was Benghazi, and that it was all, ultimately, her responsibility. “13 Hours” means Benghazi isn’t going to go away. Share this:FacebookTwitterGoogleFacebook MessengerWhatsAppEmailCopy ]]>
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Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
  Friday’s show begins with a quick recap of Thursday’s debates –Carly Fiorina won the day, and Senator Rubio and Governors Chirstie, Kasich and Walker won the second debate, with Ted Cruz helping himself almost as much and the rest left looking forward to the next round in Simi Valley at the Reagan Library on September 16.  No one self-combusted with the possible exception of Donald Trump but he hasn’t proven very flammable, at least not for very long. Meet the Press host Chuck Todd joins me as well before I fly off to D.C. to join him on the MTP panel Sunday. Then comes a lot of my friend mark Levin, talking about his new book Plunder and Deceit.  The interview with Mark will span two hours and you won’t want to miss a minute. Finally hour three is the last of the Hillsdale Dialogues devoted to the Lincoln-Douglas debate, this time the the events debate. Here’sa mother reminder to go and get the magnificent 21 hour recreation of the debates by David Straitharn playing Lincoln andRichard Douglas playing Judge Douglas:   The Audio: 08-07hhs-levin The Transcript: HH: Joined now by the Great One, my old friend, Mark Levin, whose brand new book, Plunder and Deceit: Big Government’s Exploitation of Young People and the Future, number one at Amazon. I’m going to talk to him a lot this hour and next hour as this Friday edition of the Hugh Hewitt Show rolls along. Mark Levin, always a pleasure to have you back, my friend. Congratulations, once again, a rocket launch for Plunder and Deceit. ML: You know, you’re always very generous with your time, and you are a good buddy. I appreciate it. HH: I want to begin with Page 2 where you write the very simple but controversial statement in Plunder and Deceit. “There are accepted norms of behavior born of experience and knowledge, instinct and faith.” I immediately went back to the late, great James Q. Wilson who wrote a book in 1997 called The Moral Sense. And you’re just stating the obvious. But you know, the left will quarrel with you on this, Mark Levin, that there are accepted norms. You and I know there are, but they’ll argue that point. ML: This book isn’t for the left. Of course they’re arguing the point. I’m making the point in this book that the left is the problem, that big government’s the problem. I really don’t seek to understand them. I really don’t seek to psychoanalyze them. What I seek to do here is to put on full display in the most aggressive, persuasive way I know how, in 200 pages, what the left, what big government is doing to this country. I have dug deeply, as you can see, into information that really hasn’t been provided before. I’ve drawn on history and economics and philosophy. I’ve drawn on common sense to explain to people that whether it’s the debt or immigration or the environment or entitlements or what have you, that big government is destroying this country. And even more, I’m saying that our generation, Hugh, has a responsibility to do something about it since we’re the ones that control the instrumentalities of government. And I’m also saying that younger people in this country, you know, under 40 or 45, I call it the rising generation, they have a responsibility to stir themselves and save themselves from it or they’re not going to be free, and they’re not going to be prosperous. HH: You know, Mark, it is what I call a cri de Coeur. That’s what Nixon called his 1980 book, The Real War. And I had no idea that this was predominantly directed to young people. And when I was done reading it on Wednesday night, I tweeted out everyone go get five copies of Plunder and Deceit for the young people in your life. And college professors, and this applies to me as well, go get this book and assign it to the young people in your class, because I had no idea you’ve actually targeted young people to get their attention away from the emotional and the passing and the transient and the faddish to focus on the fact they’ve been handed a time bomb. ML: They’ve been handed a time bomb, and I think we parents and grandparents have a responsibility to assist them in addressing this. You know, we sent them into these public school systems with these tenured teachers that are run by the NEA and the AFT. Let’s face it. It’s not really about students or quality. It’s about the teachers and the administrators. And then they get this ideological claptrap that’s forced down their throats, and then they move on to college, many of them, not all of them. They get the same thing in spades with these tenured professors. They get bombarded by Hollywood and the culture and in entertainment. They get bombarded by the media, bombarded by politicians. And then we wonder. You know, 18, 20, 25, 30 year olds, gee, why are they so liberal? Why are so many of them so liberal? Why do they vote the way they vote? Well, why do you think they do? Because there’s no countervailing force fighting them. so that’s why I’ve collected what I, Hugh, over the years, what I’ve been thinking about, the best case I can make so that parents and grandparents take more responsibility over what’s going on, and that’s right. When your kids go off to college, or if you’ve gone through college, you need to understand, you know, the real world, not the propaganda that’s being fed to you. HH: I want to walk through it in a fairly systematic fashion. And I want to begin with the fact that a lot of people on the left don’t understand how you write, Mark Levin. They talk about your books. They’ve never read your books. I had that happen with a New York Times reporter just this very week who had hard things to say about conservative media, but actually hasn’t read how you write. This book is written very accessibly, but at the same time, you’re throwing Montesquieu out there. You’re urging them to read Burke, the Reflections On the Revolution in France. You’re quoting Walter Williams. I love you bring back Dr. Herbert Stein, Ben’s dad, one of my favorite economists of all time. This is a serious book, but it’s not beyond the capability of young people to absorb and read this. ML: That’s right. You know, I write some books that are tough. HH: Yeah. ML: You know, political philosophy. Ameritopia was one of those, and I’m very proud of it. But this book is really aimed at trying to persuade people in a very, I won’t say rudimentary way, but almost an elementary way that you know, survey after survey, poll after poll, shows that young people distrust authority, they question the status quo, they don’t trust politicians and government, and yet in the aggregate, they vote for all those things. HH: Yeah. ML: In the aggregate, they support all those things. So I’m trying to unravel that. I’m looking at the psychosis behind that. And I’ve just concluded there’s a number of things. First of all, their life’s experience is so limited, and you know, so these quixotic, liberal appeals to utopianism, you know, you can have this for free and we can do that, they are alluring. And then on the other hand, they never really have an opportunity, unless it’s your family and mine and some of the others. But so many, they’ve never really had an opportunity, they really never heard a contrary position. HH: No, and you talk about the record levels of anxiety in the country. I immediately made a margin note. That’s because people really know the game is up, Mark. They may not know how to express it. They may not know why. But they know, was it Herb Stein who said when something’s got to come to an end, it ends? ML: Uh-huh. HH: And so that’s where this anxiety comes from. I think everyone’s in on it. But no one knows what to do about it. ML: Nobody knows what to do about it, and so you know, my prior book, the Liberty Amendments, is my best shot at what to do about it, because you know, some people think, maybe even you think, Hugh, I don’t know, that somehow Washington’s going to fix itself. I’d love to see that. HH: I’m more of an optimist than you, but last, I watched you on Wednesday night. ML: Oh, come on now, it’s not a matter of being an optimist. It’s a matter of being a realist. HH: A realist. Okay, I’m less of a realist than you are. I was watching you with George Will and Bret Baier, by the way, on Wednesday night, terrific interview, where George made the argument that the base is angry. And you said no, no, no, it’s disappointed and it’s frustrated. And I think that’s an important thing to drive home. It’s disappointed that what they vote for doesn’t happen. And it’s frustrated at okay, we’ve done it, we gave money, we wrote checks, we turned out, and nothing happens. ML: Do you know why I made that distinction? Because the establishment, including Will, keep putting down the conservative base. The conservative base is the heart of the Republican Party. I remember when Will in 1976 was accusing the supporters of Reagan in that primary against Ford of being kamikaze conservatives. That’s what he called us, kamikaze conservatives. HH: Did he really? ML: Oh, yeah. HH: But he was a big Reagan guy. ML: And I have the article. What’s that? HH: He’s a big Reagan lover now. ML: Well, he is now, but he wasn’t initially. HH: I didn’t know that. I was with Ford in ’76, by the way. I have to confess. I was a Ford man. ML: All right. HH: But I can repent. ML: That’s all right, you and McConnell. Don’t worry about it. HH: (laughing) ML: But here’s, I was a Reagan guy in ’68 before I even knew what the hell he stood for, but that’s a whole other story. So here’s the thing. So I’m making the point, they want to dismiss passionate, thoughtful, serious people as just an angry mob. That’s why I made the distinction oh, it’s angry, it’s volatile, it’s volcanic, I think he said. Well, listen, no, we are disgusted and disappointed and frustrated with what’s going on. So that’s why I wouldn’t let him get away with that. HH: It was very well said. When we come after break, I’m going to talk with Mark Levin about the Jackie Calmes piece over at the Shorenstein Center. She’s the New York Times reporter. — – – — HH: Mark, when we went to break, I was telling you last week I had on the New York Times’ Jackie Calmes. And she wrote a piece for the Shorenstein Center, got a lot of attention, entitled, They Don’t Give A Damn About Governing: Conservative Media’s Influence on the Republican Party. And I told Jackie, who’s a very smart and very able person, I said you actually should read Levin’s book, because he does give a damn about governing. He gives a damn about governing the Constitutional way. And this book, Plunder and Deceit, is about how to get the country back on the rails. And I think that’s actually all you ever write about, is how to govern the right way. ML: Yeah, I don’t understand this argument that if you don’t embrace this massive federal leviathan, and the liberal group think, that you’re opposed to government and governing. Is the Constitution a document of anarchy? Is the Constitution a document of chaos? It’s a carefully-crafted document for a Constitutional republic. And it seems very strange to me, although not surprising, that people who attack me, and there’s plenty of them, of people who attack me, particularly people who work for Bush, and they write at the New York Times and the Washington Post, say that I reject government. No, I don’t reject government. I support a Constitutional republic. HH: Yup. ML: That’s what’s set forth. Now we don’t have a Constitutional republic right now, not when Anthony Kennedy can do whatever he wants to do, not when Barack Obama is violating separation of powers on a daily basis, not when Congress throws up its arms and surrenders key provisions of the Constitution to the president. In many respects, we’re a post-Constitutional government. I don’t see us as much of a representative republic anymore when the EPA can spit out 3,000 regulations a year. I don’t see us as a federal republic much anymore when the states have little or no say in anything. So I really am defending responsible, Constitutional government. What is it that she’s defending? HH: In fact, on Page 171 of Plunder and Deceit, even though I know this, intellectually, when I see the numbers of rules put out from 2005-2014, every year, 3,500 plus rules reaching its height of 3,900 rules in 2005. And these rules are massive. You and I both know what they are like. It is the erosion of self-government. That’s what, that’s where there are some, you write in the book, in Plunder and Deceit, language becomes a problem, because when they say governing, they don’t really mean governing. They mean dictating from D.C. ML: That’s correct. I mean, they’re governing in North Korea. They’re governing in Zimbabwe. What does that mean? HH: Yeah. ML: And so we’re opposed to government. And of course, who do they talk to? Trent Lott, the quintessential sleaze ball, in my humble opinion, the guy that was running the Republican Party in the Senate all these years. Then he’s a lobbyist? His brother-in-law was a big time slip and fall lawyer who ran into trouble in Mississippi, and among his clients, some bank in Russia? I mean, come on. It’s amazing who they go to, to comment on people like me, or comment on our governing system. And you’re right. They don’t read a damn, if they’re talking about me, they don’t read a damn thing that I’ve written. HH: Yeah, they don’t read, and Plunder and Deceit, though, is going to present them with an obstacle impossible to go around. It is the most accessible of your books, I think, Mark, because I think you wrote it for young people in particular. And they ought to walk away stunned at the enormity of the problem. Let me talk about one particular problem you outlined. A lot of people are entrapped in the system. And this goes to Mitt Romney’s 47% remark, which was poorly explained at the time. He worried, Pete Wilson used to say, used to be three people pulling the cart, one person in the cart. Then it became two and two, then it became one and three. And when it becomes zero and four, the cart doesn’t move. That’s what you’re talking about, the entrapment. And that’s where we’re headed. ML: There’s no question that’s where we’re headed. You know, here’s the problem, Hugh. We’re there. It’s not a matter of us being headed there. We are there. Incredible testimony given in February this year by a brilliant economics professor, and he testified, and you can look at his numbers, he said all these numbers that the government put out are absolute nonsense. We’re not $18 trillion dollars in the hole. We’re $215 trillion dollars in the hole when you look at our obligations, our unfunded obligations. He said in every corporation in America, they have to look at unfunded obligations, whether it’s vacation leave or whatever it is. That counts against the books. In the United States, none of it counts against the books. But these are unfunded obligations. And he said it’s $215 trillion, growing by $5-7 trillion a year, not half a billion. He said that would be bad enough. He says Congress is fixing the books, the president is fixing the books, and he’s absolutely right. Now the typical statist response is tax the rich. And so I said okay, let’s think about that. $215 trillion. If we stopped today, and we take every penny out of the private economy, that creates $7.5 trillion dollars GDP. Let’s pretend it’s $20 trillion. And we do that every year for ten years. We don’t even get close at that point to what the unfunded liabilities are. HH: No. ML: That’s how bad the situation is. And that’s just the debt. HH: Just the debt. I’ll be right back with Mark Levin talking about, that was only the debt. We haven’t talked about Social Security, Medicare and Obamacare. These are all discussed in very blunt, specific terms in Plunder and Deceit, his brand new book which is linked at Hughhewitt.com. — – – – – – HH: Mark, I go back to my interview with Jackie Calmes. She was genuinely surprised that we had been colleagues once long ago, far away, and I told her he’s a much better Constitutional expert than I am. He actually understands what the per capita tax stuff means. But I want to read to you an email I got from my friend, Tim Butler, whose son is now Jonah Goldberg’s research assistant, a brilliant intern. And Tim and I were at Michigan Law together. He sent me an email before yesterday’s debate that said Hugh, I now believe what it comes down to with Donald Trump is non-establishment Republicans are desperate for an alpha male, and Trump is clearly the only alpha male in the campaign. They are tired of having sand kicked in their faces by Obama, ISIS, Mexico, Russia, China, etc., and Trump won’t let them kick sand in our faces. At least that’s their belief. That’s why I think he has staying power, and it really doesn’t matter what he says in this or any other debate, although I think he’ll do surprisingly well. As long as he projects the alpha male appearance, he’ll continue to lead in the primary. What do you make of that, Mark Levin? ML: Well, that’s what they’re saying. I mean, that’s kind of what Will said yesterday. I think there’s some truth to that, but you know, I’m very hesitant to predict what’s going to happen down the road. I’ve seen these things flip over and over and over again, so I’m not going to do that. But I don’t, I kind of like the fact that he’s in this campaign. He likes me a lot, by the way. He wants me to meet him. You know, I don’t belong to any of his clubs. I’ve never golfed on any of his courses. You know me, I’m a hermit. But anyway… HH: I know. Have you ever golfed period? ML: Oh, I’ve golfed. Look, every ten years, come hell or high water, I golf. HH: Okay, that’s what I was going to say. Do you throw your clubs? I don’t think you throw your clubs, but… ML: You want to know what’s funny? I’m living in a place, and behind me is a golf course. But anyway, so I just figure they manicure my lawn, and that’s a good thing. HH: Well, Trump’s a great interview. And he likes your straight talk. And he comes on this show all the time. He’s a terrific interview. I’m not sure he’s really a Republican. I don’t know that he’s a Constitutionalist. I don’t know any of that stuff. But what he is, is outspoken. ML: This is the thing. This is the thing. But I think he will have an appeal for a long time. I think it’ll be strong, but I’m not making any predictions. I will tell you this. From me, whomever it is, they’re going to have to be a solid conservative, they’re going to have to show me that they’re a solid conservative over a period of time. I just think there’s so much at stake now, Hugh. I just can’t see us nominating another one of these milquetoast Republicans. We’re told over and over again they can’t lose, and they get walloped. It’s like I told Will the other day, who said I don’t understand these attacks on conservatives. They can win. You know, we haven’t, look, if you’re 45 years old or younger, you’ve never had an opportunity to vote for a conservative. HH: I saw you make that point. ML: I know you think Romney… HH: You’re right. You’re right. ML: I mean, it’s true. I mean, a real conservative. I don’t mean a “bomb-thrower”. That’s what they call us. I mean, if you look at a Ted Cruz or a Scott Walker, that’s only two of them, or a Bobby Jindal. There are others that we can name. These guys have to break through this Washington establishment in order to give us a chance to take on, in the general election, a Hillary Clinton or whomever. And I think it would be enormously appealing to the American people. This is the battle we had to fight for Reagan. I had to fight it twice myself. Nobody thought he could win. Everybody thought his message was too conservative. And yet, we know that’s not true. HH: Until they sit down and hear people talk. So much of it is in fact hemmed in by the new language of narrative and constructs versus true, objective facts and just listening to people. That’s why I don’t like limiting the debates. I urge everyone to go on every show as much as they can, because if they’re confident of their message, and by the way, Walker and Cruz are among the most available people out there. They’re very comfortable with who they are and what they believe in. And Mark Levin, I always say you don’t win nine Supreme Court cases by accident when it comes to Ted Cruz, do you? ML: No, he’s, I’ve known him a long time. He’s an incredibly brilliant guy. And as you can see, he’s very earnest. People say oh, he did this on the Senate floor to get attention, he did this to be trouble. No, he did it because that’s what he believes in. This is a guy who took on one of the most powerful Republican state establishments out there in Texas. He took on the lieutenant governor, who’s worth a quarter of a billion dollars and spent freely. And he built a grassroots operation and whipped him. He came out of nowhere because of his message, because of his persona, because of his principles. HH: Yeah. ML: And so he gets to the Senate, and he looks around, and he says what the hell is going on here. You set up a vote, Mitch McConnell, that you know you’re delivering for the Democrats on the Export-Import Bank, and you know you’re going to vote against it, then you’re going to go home and tell the people in Kentucky how you’re against the corporate welfare. I have had enough of this. HH: Now when you and I sit down next with our mutual friend, D**k Hauser. We can talk Ex-Im, because I support Ex-Im as an instrument of national power, because the Chinese will fill the gap. ML: Oh, I hear that line all the time. HH: I know. We have a long debate, but I want to talk about something Cruz said on the show Wednesday. ML: Yes. HH: A hurricane is coming. It’s called the next government shutdown, because we cannot allow the government to fund the sale of baby parts. Honestly, it’s a moral crisis. It’s bigger than… ML: Well, did you hear what McConnell said? HH: I know. But that’s, it’s coming. It’s coming. ML: McConnell said he is not shutting down the government for that. Here’s what I don’t understand, Hugh. We both served, to me, the 3rd greatest president in American history, Washington, Lincoln, Reagan. Now I mean that. The government was shut down six times under Ronald Reagan. HH: Right. ML: Did you hear him whine and squeal? He used it as the opportunity to educate the American people, inform the American people, send a message to Congress. Our guys not only surrender in advance, they blame themselves in advance. HH: And my analogy, when you know Katrina is coming, you put the plywood on the windows. We know that the House is not going to vote funding, so we have to start messaging why now as opposed to saying we’re not going to shut down the government. We have to start saying we cannot fund the sale of baby parts. ML: So why is the Republican leadership in the Senate doing what it’s doing? HH: They fear getting hammered again like they did in 2013, although we won in 2014. And people tell me I’m crazy. ML: I’ll tell you what I think. HH: Go ahead. ML: They really don’t mind funding Planned Parenthood. HH: Oh, I don’t know about that. ML: I’m not talking about, well, listen, what the hell have they done ever to stop the funding of Planned Parenthood? Nothing. Nothing. You know who we miss? We miss Henry Hyde. Henry Hyde was a class act. He was articulate. Even the Democrats liked him. He could explain this issue. Mitch McConnell, I’m sorry to tell you this, maybe it’ll even upset you. He can’t explain anything. HH: Well, I do love Mitch, you know that. I think he runs the Senate well. But I think on this, we’re going to be arguing with him, because I do not believe the Republicans, they may be forced to their knees after two months or three months, but they can win this battle, Mark. They can win this. If they pass a CR with the new Defense approps and everything except Planned Parenthood and they send to the President, or they break the filibuster rules… ML: You don’t have to convince me. HH: Okay, I’ll be right back with Mark Levin. — – — – HH: The eventual collapse of a colossal government, Mark writes, will indiscriminately engulf an entire society and economy. Now Mark, some people will say you are a prophet of doom. I point out the fact that great civilizations collapse – Rome completely, Great Britain in the aftermath of World War II effectively collapsed and remained there until Thatcher arrived. You’re a prophet. I don’t know if anyone’s paying any attention to you, though. ML: Did you say we’re number one on Amazon? Did I hear you say that? HH: You were when we taped this interview. ML: And do you think I’ll be number one on the New York Times list? HH: No, of course not, because they kept Ted Cruz off of it, they kept Michael Oren’s book, Ally, off of it. ML: How much you want to be I am? HH: Really? ML: How much you want to bet I’m so far ahead of the number two book, no brags, this. I don’t know. I’m guessing. How much you want to bet that I will be number one? HH: Gosh, I hope so. I don’t want to bet against my friend or the future of the country, so… ML: Let me tell you why. HH: Why? ML: My last three books were number one, and they didn’t want it to be number one, either. There are millions and millions of people, Hugh, who agree with us. The problem is they don’t know what kind of action to take or where to go to get this country back. And all I do is I try to explain different ways to do this. Let’s talk to our children and grandchildren. Let’s talk to each other. Let’s spread our ideas. The Liberty Amendments, I do not believe that Washington’s going to fix itself, so let’s do what the framers suggested. I go out and I make my case. I don’t just argue doom and gloom. I try to explain what we might be able to do. But I’m going to tell you something. What if I’m wrong? What if we did some things to pull back the central government, to unleash the private economy, to defend individual liberty, to secure the border, to improve our national security? What if I’m wrong? That still does what? That still advances liberty and opportunity and wealth creation. HH: You bet. ML: So this agenda is the right agenda regardless. HH: Now Mark, after I finished Plunder and Deceit, I actually was moved to think about what a Republican might do, and I encouraged all of the Republicans to take it to the debate, by the way. And I was thinking about a blanket repeal law, a law of a new Congress and a new Republican president that said every law passed from the beginning of President Obama’s tenure and every regulation is hereby repealed and ineffective. And that would tell people we’re resetting the clock completely. Do you think that would make sense to people? ML: I think it would be wonderful. I think we’re going to need new Republican leadership to do that. And if we have a conservative president, as you know, we can get either new Republican leadership in Congress or that Republican leadership will follow the conservative president. Now that said, I’ve been arguing that they put together a group of really solid conservatives, solid conservative libertarian economists, and give them 90 days to go through all these federal agencies and departments, find out what regulations they passed, and undo them. HH: That’s why I just want a blanket repeal. There’s nothing good that’s come out of the Department of the Interior or the EPA in the least six and a half years, nothing. ML: They ought to take Obama’s pen and phone and use it against him. HH: Right. Now let me ask you, the only chapter I didn’t read, and I will admit this to my friend. I didn’t read the minimum wage chapter, because anyone who supports a minimum wage is in my view economically illiterate. ML: Right. HH: I don’t need to be persuaded of that. ML: Right. HH: But do you think we have to make this argument still? Or does everyone know that’s a joke that’s just a Democrat payoff to special interests? ML: Well, I mean, it’s, apparently it’s popular, because it passes every time these states put it on the ballot. It passed in Arkansas, I believe, passed in New Jersey. So, but what I want people to know is, particularly young people, every time they increase the minimum wage, you’re going to have a harder time getting a job or keeping a job. HH: There’s one intern outside, not two. And you know why? It’s because of California’s minimum wage laws. ML: Isn’t that amazing? HH: Yeah. ML: And look at it this way. Our immigration policies bring in illegal immigrants who are paid under the minimum wage. Then they keep driving up the minimum wage. It’s very schizophrenic. But in the end, it’s the American citizen young person who gets stuck, because the illegal alien will get the job, and the minimum wage is driven up. The American who has the job will be pushed out. It’s just so bizarre. And I provide, you know, fact after fact after fact showing that this unrelenting, endless wave of immigration, which is in fact new to this country, is so destructive particularly of opportunities for young people, and by the way, not just people on the minimum wage, in the stems, in the science, technology, engineering and math. We have people who are running up massive student loan bills, $1.3 trillion dollars. And what the hell for? $1.3 trillion dollars. HH: Yeah, for dance classes. I do part company with Ann Coulter and you a little bit on what to do with the illegals who are here, but not on putting a fence on the border. ML: Well, don’t necessarily throw me in with her. I don’t know what position you’re taking. HH: Okay, that’s true. She was just, I was on with her on Sean’s show on Tuesday night, and Ann just, I don’t know what she wants to do at this point. I think she wants to round up everyone in dragnets, and I’m not for that. Let me go with you to… ML: Hold on. Let me just tell you this. Nobody, listen, the only person who ever rounded up everybody was a moderate president by the name of Dwight Eisenhower, who rounded up one million illegal immigrants, and no, literally… HH: Yeah. ML: …and had them moved out of the country. Today, we don’t even talk about that, Hugh. Let’s be honest. We don’t even talk about deportation. HH: No. ML: You can’t even use the phrase self-deportation. Why not? Why not? If people can’t get jobs in this country as a matter of law because they’re here illegally, they’ll go home. There’s nothing wrong with that. And one other thing, Hugh, 40% of those who are here illegally have overstayed their visas. HH: Overstayed visas, yeah. ML: You don’t think they should be thrown out? HH: And I want the fence on the border, absolutely, because of the need to protect our national security. So let’s go to where we agree, which is your national security chapter, something I want to compliment you on that no one else has written. It’s in Plunder and Deceit. I haven’t seen it anywhere else. The average age of an officer in the United States military is 34.8 years. The average year of an enlisted man in the United States military is 27.3. Mark Levin salutes young people in America for carrying the burden of protecting this country at the very same time that old people in America are shoveling debt onto their shoulders. I’ve never seen that argument made before, Mark Levin. Congratulations on putting it front and center. ML: Well, you’re very kind. You know, people are so busy dumping on younger people, who the hell do they think make up the military in this country? Who do they think is fighting these wars? And you know what? This is the problem also, and you know, I want people to understand. When you support candidates for public office who are diminishing the power of the military, who do not think America should be a superpower, you’re provoking our enemies. Our enemies take advantage of us. Reagan made the point, others have made the point. So who will fight the wars? If there’s a World War III and a draft, who do you think’s going to be drafted? So it is in their best interest to support a robust national security, a strong military. And every time we do this to our military, hollow it out, whether it’s pre-World War II, pre-World War I, and so forth, it begets war. So this is the case I’m making to them, and of course, to our generation, I’m making the case, hey, look, these young people aren’t all that bad. For God’s sakes, they’re defending us. HH: Now you know, I saw the trailer for the new Michael Bay movie, 13 Hours on Benghazi, and those studs who went to save the annex and the ambassador. It was too late for the ambassador. They’re all in their 30s. They’re all 20 year olds. They’re all at the tip of the spear. And that’s what we need to fund, and we need to fund the ships to carry them where they need to go and the submarines to keep the deterrent, because Putin and China are eating our lunch. Let me play something for you, Mark Levin, the President said on Tuesday. Here’s what the President said. BO: It’s those hardliners chanting death to America who have been most opposed to the deal. They’re making common cause with the Republican caucus. HH: 30 seconds to the break, Mark. You ever heard anything like that from a president before? ML: No, and I think that’s a historic speech. It’s a historic speech, because one day, people are going to look back and say oh, my God, how wrong he was. It’s the most outrageous position a president has ever taken. HH: I agree. — – – – – HH: Plunder and Deceit is his brand new book, Plunder and Deceit. I hope it is the number one New York Times bestseller that it, if they don’t manipulate the list, it will be, because it’s flying off of shelves everywhere. It’s going to go further and farther and have more impact than the Liberty Amendments, than Ameritopia, than Liberty and Tyranny. ML: No, no, no, not more than Liberty and Tyranny, but I wish it would. HH: Oh, I think it, you underestimate. ML: Think it’ll sell 1.4 million copies? HH: You underestimate how many kids need to be educated in America. That’s where I think this is really going to resonate, Mark. ML: I hope you’re right. HH: I think every mom and dad out there, and you address it very specifically to inter-generational need, as Burke said, to carry forward principles of governance. Now I’ve got to talk to you about a high principle. The filibuster has been around a long time, but you and I both know it’s extra-Constitutional. I’ve argued with a number of Senators from the middle of the party to the conservative wing. They love the filibuster, including Ted Cruz. I hate it. And Jim Talent said on this show there comes a time when things are so broken you have to break the rules in order to save the country. What does Mark Levin think? ML: Well, I guess I am, I have a middle ground on this. I think filibusters, when it applies to judicial nominations, are unconstitutional. HH: I agree. ML: That’s because the framers made it quite clear that the president and one half of the other branch of the Congress, the Senate, have a role to play. HH: I agree. ML: So the filibuster changes that. HH: Yup. ML: So I reject it there. As for legislation, the Constitution also provides that the Senate can set its own rules. So when it comes to legislation, I think they can filibuster. However, that said, prudence needs to be in play here. And when you’re dealing with a president who thumbs his nose at the Constitution daily, I would suspend the filibuster rule, because the Constitution is far more important. I would stop Harry Reid and Chuck Schumer from gumming up the works, and I would send bill after bill after bill to this president’s desk and make him veto it, because Hugh, this guy has vetoed a total of four bills in six and a half years. It is a modern time low, because he either rules by fiat, or they send him bills that he likes. HH: And we have a Defense appropriations bill that is stuck in the Senate, because Democrats won’t defend the United States. They really, literally, will not fund the defense of the United States. ML: So suspend the filibuster rule. There’s nothing wrong. You know what? They fight harder to defend their own rules than they defend the Constitution. HH: This is my point, and this is where they need, I think we need to tell our audiences it’s time to tell leadership get rid of the filibuster. But Ted is one of our guys, and he defends it because of the good argument that in it’s blocked a lot of bad laws in the past. It blocked global climate change. But they went ahead and did it through the EPA anyway. ML: Not only that, isn’t it interesting that Harry Reid did in fact use the so-called nuclear option and suspended it under certain circumstances. So he’s already set the stage for this. Look, I think when you’re dealing with a president who is as reckless as this, and the nation is in such perilous trouble, you’ve got to stand with the Constitution first and foremost. HH: Amen. ML: And whatever the Senate rules are that are stopping you from supporting or upholding the Constitution, to hell with them. HH: Agreed. Now let me ask you before the break and our last segment. Hillary Clinton has broken 18USC1924. You worked for Ed Meese. I worked for Ed Meese. We both had the top secret and the SCI clearances. If we’d left stuff on our desk when we went home at night, we’d have gone to jail, much less taking it home and stealing it at the end of our tenure. Is this Department of Justice so broken from the one that we served that there will be no prosecution of Hillary Clinton for this? ML: It’s possible it is utterly corrupt, and you’re exactly right. People need to understand how serious this is. When you have top secret or coded information, you know, you go through classes and training on how to deal with it. It is a very serious matter, and they have steps on how it’s supposed to be treated, even what kind of folders they need to be in, and who is not allowed to handle it. You’re not allowed to take it home, let alone a whole damn server with emails coming through it every single day. You’re not allowed to take one document home without certain permission, certain approval. HH: Amen. And we used to get briefed all the time about how we lowly special assistants, you were a chief of staff. I was a special assistant to the Attorney General, would be targeted by the enemy, that we would be trailed, that we would be compromised. The Secretary of State, they were reading her stuff in real time, Mark Levin. ML: Unbelievable. Well, she views the Freedom of Information Act and Congressional oversight and things like that as they’re the real enemy. You know, if the other enemy, the foreigners get a hand of it, you know, China, Russia, so be it. HH: So be it. One more segment with my pal, Mark Levin. — – – – – – HH: People have always marveled that we’re pals, but we’ve been pals since the Reagan revolution. And though that we are opposite each other, we are not opposite each other on 90% of the issues. ML: But can I tell you something? HH: Yeah. ML: You give the best, I shouldn’t even say this, you give the best book interview of anybody I have ever talked to. HH: Well, I read the book. ML: No, but you actually delve into stuff. HH: Well, that’s, I read this and I was riveted, because I’ve got young sons, you know? ML: Yeah. HH: And you write this as an appeal to parents. ML: Yeah. HH: And I’m thinking boy are they screwed. They are just so screwed. And talk about grandkids, they’re screwed. But here’s why they’re really screwed. There’s a chapter on the degrowthers in Plunder and Deceit. I do Endangered Species Act and Clean Water Act law for a living when I’m not on the radio, and you understate the problem, even though you’ve completely, correctly state it. They want to take us back to a pre-industrial, they don’t, our audience, even though we tell them, they don’t really believe us, do they, Mark, about what the environmental left wants? ML: That’s why I quote them. I quote the environmental left. They importation it, they call it, in Europe, the degrowth movement. Here, we call it, you know, Clean Air, Clean Water and polar bears. It has nothing to do with clean air, clean water and polar bears. This is an attack on capitalism. They opposed the Industrial Revolution. They are throwbacks. They are regressive. They reject technological advances. You know, it used to be, Hugh, that the attack on capitalism was that it just created too much wealth and there was inequity. Now, the attack is it creates too much wealth period. HH: Period. ML: So they really do want to throw us back. And Obama is the leader of this degrowth movement. The recent regs on Monday and more before that, you know, we litigate against them at the EPA. And the fact of the matter is, you know, he’s closing down coal mines. The Democrats used to stand for coal miners, for crying out loud. He’s closing down steel mills. He is breaking the back of the industrial heartland of this country, and you’re going to see not just electricity bills go up. You’re going to see brownouts and blackouts. And it’s interesting, I’ve tried to draw the parallel with California and water. The first Governor Brown, you know, he obstructed virtually every project that would develop the reservoirs and canals and the movement of water from northern states more into California and so forth, and unfortunately, you’re suffering from that. HH: Oh, my gosh. And these fires that rage, and Jerry Brown sent a fundraising letter for the Democrats blaming it on global climate change, when it fact we could have desalinization plants up and down this coast if we want. On Page 110, Mark, you write probably the most chilling sentence. “Much of the so-called environmental movement today has transmuted into an aggressively nefarious and primitive faction.” And I want to emphasize that word primitive. They do not, in their minds, imagine what it means to be in a slum in India, or dying of famine in South Sudan. They don’t understand it, and so they blithely recommend it to the world. It’s actually the most immoral part of the left, is the degrowthing people. ML: As I say in the end note to that line or that paragraph, that word primitive was one that was assigned to that movement by Ayn Rand. HH: Right. ML: And she was quite right. And this is a primitive movement. It is a backwards movement. The problem is it now controls the Environmental Protection Agency, and thanks to the Supreme Court, the Environmental Protection Agency now seeks to control every business and enterprise in this country. And that’s the problem. If you follow this to its logical extreme, it’s extremely dangerous. How many cars we can have? What kind of cars we can have? How big our house can be? All in the name of carbon pollution? Well of course, carbon dioxide is not pollution. Carbon dioxide in the end creates oxygen. We’re not talking about carbon monoxide, putting your mouth over a muffler in a car. We’re talking about carbon dioxide. You know, greenhouse gasses, all of a sudden, that’s negative. Without greenhouse gasses, we’re Mars. HH: We’re Mars. “So I ask the rising generation, America’s younger people, what do you choose for yourself and future generations? Do you choose liberty or tyranny? And what do you intend to do about it? That’s how you close Plunder and Deceit. How is your reaction among young people? ML: Well, the book’s only been out since Tuesday, and I am somewhat cloistered. So we’ll know in a week or two or three or four, but I can just tell you that the reports are coming in. I don’t even know if I’m allowed to say this. We’re now in our third printing. So I don’t know. I guess somebody’s reading it. HH: I think it’s hitting that seam of the political season. And as you look at those candidates, the first debate was six, the second debate with ten, who is going to channel, it’s not anger, it is energy and it is passion, and I think it’s what my friend, Tim, said, the need for alpha males, or the need for alpha females, the need for leadership. Who’s going to passion that, Mark Levin? ML: I just think it’s too early to tell. You know, that debate format, ten people at 9pm Eastern, with very limited amount of time, we really need to drill down into the substance of where these guys stand. We know where some of them stand, and sort it out. But Hugh, I’ll just tell you, from my perspective, I’m not going to wait until the end of the process where they cherry-pick the conservatives, and then Jeb Bush slips through. I mean, from my perspective, I’m going to focus in on three or four in the few months ahead, and suggest to at least my audience, these are the people we ought to really focus on. HH: And that means checkbook, that means pocketbook, that means giving time, passion, energy and persuasion. The persuasion’s got to come from facts. Facts are in Plunder and Deceit. Thank you, Mark Levin. It is always a pleasure. Off to do your own show, and I appreciate you taking so much time with me. ML: It’s a great honor. Thanks so much, Hugh, and God bless. HH: And you, too. End of interview. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
HH: I begin this hour as I do on Thursdays when I’m lucky with the Columnist of the World, Mark Steyn, the author of a brand new book, A Disgrace to the Profession: The World’s Scientists in Their Own Words on Michael Mann, his “Hockey Stick,” and their Damage to Science which is available on SteynOnline.Com, better book stores at Amazon.com. Mark, welcome back. It’s always great to talk to you.   MS: Hey, good to be with you.   HH: Mark, I have a proposition. No other politician in the western world in any democracy – whether our’s, Canada, Great Britain, Australia – could survive the conduct that Hilary Clinton has engaged in whose last name was not Clinton. Agree or disagree?   MS: Yeah, I think that’s true, and it’s one of these situations where people think “Oh well, that’s just Bill and Hilary. That’s just what they do. And usually it’s just something that is a personal benefit to them that they – going back to when they used to claim Bill’s used underwear as tax-deductible charitable donations back in the early ‘90s in Arkansas – but the idea that the entire chief foreign policy official of the United States can keep the most confidential business with the United States and its relations with the world powers on a server in some guy’s bathroom in an apartment in Colorado and you can only read about that because a British newspaper – the Daily Mail – thought it was kind of newsworthy, but the New York Times and the Washington Post and the LA Times didn’t – that tells you that this woman thinks none of it matters and she’s got a couple of speed bumps on the path to her coronation, but her carriage is still going to make it.   HH: Now Mark, you were the first to hint at this, and I think you’ve been very cautious, but I think the question has to be raised – you hinted at what would be the consequences of the opponents of the United States reading in real-time the Secretary of State’s internet traffic, and you hinted that would have been very bad. Increasingly people realize that was in fact happening. We don’t know which enemies at what time, but increasingly – whether it’s Mike Morell on this show or other NSA folks or Bob Baer on CNN this week. They had it because it is not even a grade school exercise for cyber-espionage experts to break into a private server like this.   MS: No, and as I said when I first mentioned that, I don’t like to seem like a conspiracy guy, but I think it’s clear that once it was known that this the Secretary of State’s email address, that the Russians, the Chinese, and other major sophisticated nations would’ve no problem getting into it. The question then is, who do they share it with? But it was interesting to me all around that period around Benghazi how well-informed America’s enemies were. I mean, for example, just those guys in Benghazi knew the ambassador was not going to be in Tripoli but was going to be in Benghazi, where he was going to be in Benghazi that very night, and you have to operate on the assumption that Mrs. Clinton prioritized keeping her conversation with Sid Blumenthal private over the risk of keeping her conversations with senior American officials around the planet private and out of the hands of Americans enemies.   HH: Because the question that hasn’t been answered yet – because it’s a highly-technical question is once you have a gateway in – and here you have the Secretary of State’s server not protected – you have a gateway in the State Department’s communication, how many tunnels can you go down? Can you go into the classified material and the actually encrypted material. Once the door’s open – the front door – can you get to the basement? And I don’t know the answer to that, Mark Steyn.   MS: Well, I think when you use these words like “encrypted” and “classified,” everyone thinks that they mean more than they do. They mean as much as the person who is privy to that information wants them to mean. So for example, Michael Mukasey wrote a piece in the Wall Street Journal a couple of days ago explaining how very seriously he took all this stuff and certain confidential documents with certain markings – he didn’t get out and look at until he was in the Maxwell Smart “Cone of Silence” or whatever it was called (laughs) and they begathered around there in the top secret bunker and looking at it. But Mrs. Clinton was being emailed on the kind of thing that Mrs. Scoggin on 27 B. Elm Street has on her emails and she didn’t mind that. And if you look at any American embassy around the world, they all have these little top secret bunkers somewhere in the heart of the thing with concrete walls so nobody can hear what they’re talking about, the communication is super-encoded. But none of it means anything if the head of the entire apparatus is just keeping in some guy’s toilet in Colorado.   HH: Agreed. Now twenty years ago – nineteen to be specific – a different Republican candidate was talking about a different Clinton saying “Where’s the outrage?” They ought to run that Bob Dole tape now because I don’t see any outrage. In fact, when Hilary Clinton engaged with the press, here’s the heart of her back-and-forth with Ed Henry.   HC: I have no idea. That’s why we turn it over–   EH: But you were in charge of it. You were the official in charge, did you wipe the server?   HC: Well, wipe with a cloth or something?   EH: Digitally, did you try to wipe the whole server?   HC: I don’t know how it works digitally at all. I do not have any–   EH: You do not have what?   HH: And so then she walked away and said “Nobody cares about this except you guys.” There should be universal condemnation of this Mark Steyn.   MC: Yeah, but she’s wrong on that. The media are protecting her. The media are protecting. The people understand that actually in some basic way this isn’t about the Clintons, this is about America, and that was a very – at the time when Bill was dallying with Monica, that was a harder argument to make because people kept saying “Oh well, everybody does it and we all are about sex and all of us shouldn’t and people didn’t want to hear about it. This is different. This isn’t her business, this is your business, Hugh. This is your listeners’ business. This is the business of the American people. And she exposed America to grave peril. I mean, this is quite astonishing to me. It always amazes me when you read thrillers. You like reading thrillers.   HH: Yes.   MS: You have Daniel Silva and people on and they go to immense lengths to concoct a plausible scenario as to how the security’s breached. None of the further writers you interviews–   HH: (laughs)   MS: . . . Brad Shaw, Daniel Silva — none of them would think of anything so obvious as the Secretary of State of a major global power keeping the important business of that nation on a server in some guy’s toilet in Colorado.   HH: Yeah, Alex Barensen, Chuck Box, the late Vince Flynn – they’d all have that sent back from the editor saying “No one’s going to be buy that. That’s not going to work.”   MS: Yeah, I know, this is ridiculous. It’s ridiculous.   HH: (laughs) Now I’m one of the few people in America who’s seen [the] Man from U.N.C.L.E. – and I’m sorry that I did – but before I had, there was a preview for the new Michael Bay movie Thirteen Hours and it’s gripping, Mark Steyn, the Benghazi real story of what happened. I think Hilary is going to be forced from this race. I used to think she was inevitable. I wrote the book the Queen because of it. But I now believe she’s going to be forced from this race as people’s awareness of what she has done dawns on folks. What do you think?   MS: Yes, I think that’s true and I think that’s evident that people just want a non-Hilary and right now, Bernie Sanders is quite good. Democrats want a non-Hilary. But once we get nearer the general election – Benghazi is a problem for her and again she says “Nobody cares about Benghazi. Who cares about that?” But in the broader sense, she was in total charge of Libya, and Libya is the reason why Italy is now being destabilized by thousands and thousands of refugees landing on its shores because all those ports on the Libyan coast are now in the hands of ISIS and other jihadists and they’re running all these people into Italy and destabilizing Italy. I don’t believe anything. I don’t believe did as Hilary Clinton did as Secretary of State both operationally in terms of emails, but also in policy terms will be able to stand up to the slightest scrutiny were she to be candidate in the general election.   HH: And a last quick question – Donald Trump continues to gather momentum. The polls out today showing him now winning in many states where he was behind Hilary before in head-to-head match-ups. Is there a ceiling for Donald Trump?   MS: I’m not so sure that there is because the ceiling keeps getting higher. Now at some point everyone bumps up against the ceiling, but it is going higher. And I think the way to look on it, Hugh, is like this – you’ve been quite critical of him. You can say “Oh, this guy is an out-of-control lunatic buffoon” but actually–   HH: I never said that. Let the record be clear.   MS: No, no, no. I know you’ve never said that, but a lot of people, but what he’s saying is actually quite sane, where if you think of the so-called sane candidates like Jeb Bush when he talks about illegal immigration as an “act of love” – he may be a sane man, but what he’s saying is far loonier than what Donald Trump is saying. If you got a loony with the sane position versus a sane man with a loony position that other loony with a sane position.   HH: Mark Steyn, always a pleasure. I just had to correct the record. I have no favorites and no opponents in the race. I’m going to be a very fair debate moderator. Mark Steyn, always a pleasure. SteynOnline.Com to get your copy of a Disgrace to the Professon, America, it’s available now. I’ll be right back with Rick Perry on the Hugh Hewitt Show ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
Carly Fiorina joined me on the show today, with blunt assessments on why the North Korean regime feels no worries about Team Obama, and how a former member of that team, Chicago Mayor Rahm Emanuel, should resign and why the former Secretary of State and the current president should be urging him to do so: Audio: 01-06hhs-fiorina Transcript: HH: As you have no doubt heard by now, North Korea has shaken up not just the Korean Peninsula, but I think the race for the presidency. I’m joined by Carly Fiorina, one of the leading Republican contenders for the nomination. Carly Fiorina, welcome back to the Hugh Hewitt Show, your reaction to the North Korean nuclear test? CF: Well, it reminds us of what a dangerous world we live in. It also reminds us that when we do not respond to provocation and bad behavior, more bad behavior occurs. We did not respond when North Korea attacked Sony Pictures. We did not respond when Iran launched two ballistic missile tests in direct violation to the agreement they had just signed with the P5 + 1. So of course North Korea feels that it can do whatever it likes without impunity. This administration has failed to respond to every provocation. And when we keep allowing bad behavior to occur without response, we’re going to get more of it. HH: Now the original sin with North Korea dates to 1994 in an agreement negotiated, and I have to say this for conflict reasons, by my good friend, Dan Poneman, my college roommate, was up there with Bob Gates when they negotiated this agreement. And it was bad then, and we’ve argued about it since then. But does Hillary Clinton have to own the original flawed deal that her husband approved in 1994? CF: Well, her husband was the president. She wasn’t. But I think it’s a demonstration of the fact that Hillary Clinton and Bill Clinton as well have gotten more foreign policy challenges wrong. Mrs. Clinton has gotten every foreign policy challenge wrong as Secretary of State, whether it was Russia, Syria, Libya, Iran, Iraq. Nothing’s happened on her watch to improve the situation with North Korea or China, which is becoming a rising adversary, and which has probably the most influence over North Korea. And meanwhile, our relationship with others in that part of the world – Japan, the Philippines, Vietnam, Australia, South Korea, are not better, and are probably afraid, because we are not providing them with the leadership and the support they’re asking us to provide. HH: So Carly Fiorina, before we move to the politics of the impact of this, what actually would you do as president to try and contain the North Korean nuclear program? CF: Well, number one, there would be immediate response. So when North Korea attacked Sony Pictures, there should have been an immediate response, an immediate retaliation. We should have put them on the terrorist watch list, which this administration and Hillary Clinton refused to do. Second, we need to be providing the support that our allies in this region have asked for – Japan, South Korea, the Philippines, Vietnam and Australia, all have asked us for very specific kinds of military equipment and support. We are not providing it. I will, because that, too, is a signal. And three, we must engage in very serious conversations now with China, because China has the most influence. And of course, we responded not at all when China attacked our Office of Personnel Management, and stole the records of 23 million people. Every time, all of these things are related. Every time the United States does not respond appropriately to hostile acts and provocation, we will get more of them. And so all the way back to Hillary Clinton and Benghazi, when we do not respond to a purposeful terrorist attack, and instead our Secretary of State lies about it, the signal that is sent to every adversary we have in this world is the United States will do nothing. Forge ahead. HH: Have you had a chance, Carly Fiorina, to see 13 Hours, yet, the new movie about Benghazi? I have, and it’s very riveting, and it’s very damning, though she is never mentioned, nor is the President. It is utterly damning of the Obama administration. CF: I have seen snippets of it, but of course, it’s utterly damning, because we know enough from her own email trail. We know enough from her Congressional testimony that we know warnings were ignored over and over and over again. We know that additional security and support was refused. We know that the American people were lied to about what really happened. I mean, those things are damning, and it is why we must have a nominee who will hold Hillary Clinton to account. I will. HH: Now I want to switch over to some politics. I am taking a redeye tonight to get to D.C. to be part of the post-presidential town hall forum on CNN, Jake Tapper, tomorrow night, 9pm, there’ll be eight of us commenting on whatever the President has to say. And I hope Rahm Emmanuel comes up, and I asked Chris Christie this on Monday, and I want to ask you today, Carly Fiorina. Should Rahm Emmanuel resign? And should the President urge him to do so as a means of communicating seriousness about not only gun violence, but the need to police your police, and to police your community well? CF: Well, yes. Wouldn’t that be nice? Of course, it won’t happen. Rahm Emmanuel clearly believes in the Clinton way. I must say, what’s the Clinton way? Say whatever you have to say. Lie as long as you can get away with it, and do whatever you need to do to get reelected. And that’s what Rahm Emmanuel clearly has done. This whole terrible tragedy has been swept under the rug for a year to assure that Rahm Emmanuel would be reelected. Just imagine for one moment if the mayor of Chicago were not President Obama’s personal friend. Just imagine for a moment if this were a Republican what President Obama would be saying and doing. He has been incredibly silent on this tragedy. HH: So has Hillary Clinton, and she is his good friend, and Rahm Emmanuel caught her… CF: Exactly. HH: Should she call on him to step down? CF: Well, yes, because wouldn’t that be consistent with the rhetoric they usually use when these tragedies occur? I mean, most of the time, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are right out front way before the facts are known in saying that the police have done something terrible here. This time, when the facts are crystal clear, that in fact this policeman did do something terribly wrong, when the facts are crystal clear that their good friend swept it under the carpet, when the protesters march day after day after day calling on Rahm Emmanuel to resign, Hillary Clinton and Barack Obama are dead quiet. HH: Now let me speak about the politics of Iowa and New Hampshire. First of all, earlier today I tweeted that if either Ted Cruz, Marco Rubio or Carly Fiorina is our nominee, then either Doug Ducey or Tom Cotton ought to be on the ticket with them for different reasons. They have different skill sets that bring, you can’t have, though, two white males, I don’t believe, and successfully seek the presidency this year for obvious demographic reasons. What do you make of those two guys? Do you know either of them well? CF: I don’t know either of them well, but I certainly know them, and I agree with you that they each would bring different, but important skills to a ticket, without a doubt. HH: All right, now how about Iowa and New Hampshire, and what is your feel for the momentum there, and in South Carolina, obviously, the first big three competitions? CF: Well, I am in New Hampshire all this week, and I must say our crowds are big, very big and growing. We are needing new space. I was in Iowa right before the holidays. We were needing bigger space. My husband, Frank, is in Iowa as I am in New Hampshire, and we will switch places next week. So I am feeling very good about what’s going on here on the ground. The other thing that I would say to you, Hugh, and we know this from the data, but the mainstream media ignores it, the reality is the majority of people in Iowa and New Hampshire don’t make up their minds until the last two weeks or the last five days, and in some cases, the last 24 hours. So this race is going to get won on the ground. And this race is still very much wide open. HH: Patrick Ruffini, one of our best metrics guys on the right, has said that the overwhelming amount of coverage given to Donald Trump has in fact advantaged him in this race. Do you disagree with Patrick? Or do you think he has something of merit in his argument? CF: Oh, there’s no question Donald Trump has been advantaged by all this media coverage. You know, I’ve compared him to the Kim Kardashian of politics. They’re both famous for being famous. And the media plays along. And when Donald Trump gets so much free media day after day after day, when his ads are playing almost 40 times in full on cable television, of course it helps him. HH: And so that sophisticated voter that you spoke about earlier, do they take that into their OODA loop, their observe, orient, decide and act voting OODA loop? CF: Yes, I think they do. I think they absolutely do. I’m not saying that Donald Trump doesn’t have support. He clearly does. I am saying that his support is propped up by a media that features him way too often. I mean, he gets more coverage than all the other candidates combined. On the other hand, why do I have confidence in the common sense and good judgment of the American people and the people of New Hampshire and Iowa and the early states? Because I started out 17 out of 16. The pollsters didn’t even ask my name. Less than 3% of the people had ever heard of me, and I don’t get nearly as much coverage as Donald Trump, and yet here I am tied with governors who have been in politics all their lives, have spent tens of millions of dollars on television advertising. I haven’t spent any, and I’m right in the hunt. HH: When it comes down to it in New Hampshire, they do vote contrarian. Is Carly Fiorina positioned well to tap into that? CF: Well, I certainly hope so. I certainly think so. That’s what I see here on the ground. I talk every day to the people of New Hampshire, as I have to you and the people of America. It is time to take our country back. HH: www.carlyforamerica.com. Carly Fiorina, thank you, always a pleasure, stay warm out there in the colds of New Hampshire and Iowa. End of interview. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
The audio: 01-07hhs-bush The transcript: HH: Joined now by former Florida Governor and candidate for the Republican nomination for the 2016 presidential election, Jeb Bush. Governor Bush, Happy New Year, great to have you back. JB: Great to be with you, Hugh. HH: Does the North Korean explosion and the Sunni-Shiia confrontation today, Iran is claiming that Saudi Arabia sent missiles into their Yemeni embassy, do these sorts of events impact the race on the ground? JB: Absolutely, they will. And it’s a reflection of a presidency that does not believe that America’s role in the world is to bring peace and stability. As we pull back, we’re not the only reason why these things take place, but we, by our abandonment, you see the fragile world that exists. Without American leadership, things get ugly pretty quick. And by the way, Hugh, that’s, I think, an important point, and probably, hopefully, it will be discussed in the debate next week, that Donald Trump’s first impulse as it relates to the issue of North Korea is to say that’s China’s problem. But really, I mean, you think about it, you asked a good question to Mr. Trump about the nuclear triad in the last debate, and he didn’t seem to have much knowledge about it. But it is our problem when they’re trying to build long range missile capabilities in trying to develop a nuclear weapon that could reach the shores of the United States. And we can’t outsource our national security to the Chinese. HH: He has suggested to me… JB: That is just crazy. HH: He has suggested to me that maybe those 28,000 American troops are not providently deployed. Do you agree or disagree with that, on the Korean Peninsula? JB: They are essential. And put aside the size of it, in fact, they’re looking to relocate some of the, at least the command further south. But it is essential for us to be engaged in the world, whether it’s Japan or with our Navy assets or Korea. How do you, I mean, Korea is a good example where American leadership matters. Do the Koreans provide support financially for this? Yeah, they do. Of course, they do. And put aside the amount of troop level, we should stay engaged. And Trump is an isolationist. And I think it’s dangerous in this world. We see it, we see the unfraying happening. We see the attack in Paris at the police station today. We see North Korea kind of feeling like they need more attention, so they test this bomb. We see the Shiia-Sunni conflict playing out in a very dramatic way, principally, and at least in one reason, because the United States is not sending a signal to one of our strongest allies in the region, Saudi Arabia, that we’re going to be with them. HH: Does Donald Trump have, not temperament, but the deep exposure to and nuanced understanding of American foreign policy and Defense factors to be president? JB: Not right now. He doesn’t. I mean, that’s pretty clear. It was clear on the debate stage last week. It’s clear when he talks the way he does. Just take ISIS. Mr. Trump in the matter of, since late September, where he said that we didn’t have a fight in Syria, then he said let’s let the Russians take out ISIS, and prior to that, he said let ISIS take out Assad. And then he said we’re going to bomb the bleep out of ISIS once the attacks took place. That kind of volatility and lack of seriousness should give people pause. We’re electing a president of the United States and a commander-in-chief, and I think we need a steadiness, and someone who has an understanding of the complexity of how the world works, and certainly an understanding about how America’s presence and leadership in the world can bring about security and peace for the homeland. HH: I want to come back to the ’94 deal in just a moment, but to be clear, if Donald Trump is the nominee, will Jeb Bush support him and campaign for him? JB: Donald Trump will not be the nominee, because of the reasons we’re discussing right now. I think there will be, particularly here, I’m in New Hampshire today, as people begin to realize the responsibilities they have as first in the nation primary voters, that they will take into consideration that we’re nominating a candidate to beat Hillary Clinton, which I don’t think he can do, and we’re nominating someone who could be president, which requires leadership skills and understanding of how the world works. HH: But if he were, and I asked this question, I have to ask it twice of everyone. JB: Yeah. HH: If he were, would you support him? JB: Donald Trump’s not going to be the nominee. So you asked me twice, and I answered you twice. HH: Okay, I’ll try three times. Just go with me, because he’s ahead in New Hampshire, he’s ahead everywhere. Would Jeb Bush do the loyal Republican thing and support the nominee? JB: I have been a loyal Republican my entire adult life. I have supported and voted for every Republican candidate since Richard Nixon. That should give you some indication of my loyalty to the conservative cause. HH: So is that a yes, Governor? JB: That’s not a yes, it’s not a no. I’m just telling you, I don’t think it matters. I have been a loyal Republican, and is past is prologue, then I’m confident I’ll be supporting the Republican nominee. HH: But if Donald Trump hears that, and I’ve got to break and then I’ll come back and talk about it after the break, he might say the same thing, which would send shudders down the spine of the Republican Party, right? JB: I’m just telling you what I believe. I believe that we need to have a candidate that can beat Hillary Clinton, and that candidate cannot be a candidate that tries to insult their way to the presidency. Perhaps Mr. Trump will change his path, start taking lessons on how things work. It’s possible, I don’t know. But I’m organizing myself to become the nominee to beat Hillary Clinton. That’s all I can tell you. HH: More on that in a moment. JB: That’s what I know from the bottom of my heart. HH: More on that in a moment. I’ll be right back with Jeb Bush. Go nowhere, America. —- – — – HH: Now I want to go back to the 1994 deal in the North Korean crisis, but one more political question. You are in New Hampshire. You’re getting great crowds. New Hampshire brought Bill Clinton back from the brink in 1992. You don’t have his problems, because they were moral problems, but you’ve got political problems. Do you think New Hampshire will do for Jeb Bush this time what it did for Bill Clinton in ’92? JB: I feel really good about where we are. We have a great ground game. We are, look, we have this superPAC that’s not, that I’m not coordinating with or affiliated with, but they are advertising. I see it when I get home to my home away from home at the Hilton Garden Inn. And it seems like we’re making good progress. The crowd sizes are bigger, the conversion rates are growing. I’m excited about it. It’s fun to campaign here. People actually, really, ask incredibly good questions. And so I can’t predict how this outcomes, this is a pretty volatile year to be making political predictions, but I feel good about where we are. HH: You know, I didn’t get to ask you during the debate about the triad. I took the follow on to Marco Rubio. What would be your priority among the three systems to update and modernize? JB: Well, first of all, had I been asked that question, I would have ripped into Trump saying he had no understanding of the first obligation of a president, which is because he has unique responsibility as it relates to the deterrent effect of what the nuclear triad brings. So I would have prefaced my answer by saying that, rather than ignoring it as Marco did. And then I would have said that all of them are important, but I think the submarine part of this needs to have the highest priority. I think our Navy has been devastated just by neglect. The sequester has been bad across all the Armed Forces for sure, but the United States Naval superiority needs to be maintained. And certainly, the submarine capabilities, which are stealthy, mobile, are not, all of them are important, but that would be, perhaps, the most important thing to modernize and to focus on. HH: There is a Seth Crosby piece in the Wall Street Journal today, Governor Bush. We’re down to 272 ships, and Ash Carter said we’re going lower, not the other way. I’m kind of stunned by this. What was your reaction? Have you had a chance to see the piece? JB: I’ve seen the piece, and I was stunned as well. We are at levels that are dangerous for our country. I mean, think about it. We now announce when we’re going near the island, the manmade island that China has built a hundred miles off in the South China Sea, as though that’s a sign of strength that we just announce that we’re doing it. We should do this as a matter of course, but if we don’t have the naval assets to be able to engage in the Persian Gulf, engage in Asia. The rest of the world sees this, and they take advantage. They immediately, the Chinese aren’t waiting for us to figure out how to deal with sequester. They’re engaged in a major modernization, and building up of a navy. And there’s going to be a tipping point at some point. And I think this is a really dangerous time. The gestation time for getting new ships into the seas, and new arms into the hands of the warfighters, and new planes which haven’t been built in ages is not just a month. This takes years, and yeah, we need to modernize the procurement process and lower the costs and all that. But we need to make a commitment that we’re going to have the greatest fighting force in the 21st Century, not just holding together by Band-Aids the greatest fighting force of the 20th Century. HH: Now I want to switch to the subject of the day. I’m in D.C., because the President is holding a gun forum tonight, and I will be on CNN with Jake Tapper talking about that forum after it concludes. First question that I think is directly related to guns, the President did not ask during the Omni negotiations of last month for anything that he demanded yesterday. How seriously do you take his demands in light of the fact he didn’t even bring them up last month when everything was on the table? JB: I don’t take his interest in dealing with Congress seriously, for sure. I do take, unfortunately, his interest, even though he claims he’s a Constitutional lawyer, to trample the Constitution. He doesn’t have the power to sign executive orders where the authority hasn’t been delegated to him. And every time he does this, he makes it harder and harder to find common ground. And the presidents that are successful have to lead. They can’t just always be pushing down someone who doesn’t agree with him. Look, our gun control laws, I think, are done best from the bottom up, that reflects the uniqueness and the diversity of our country. Florida is a 2nd Amendment state. And I worked to create a support for law abiding citizens being able to access guns. We have background checks. People that are, that have restraining orders because they committed domestic violence, cannot get guns. We have good gun laws, and we punish people that commit crimes with guns. That’s the idea that I think reduces gun violence. And I don’t think we should expect Washington to oppose a one, you know, to create a one size fits all approach to this, and certainly not by executive authority when the president doesn’t have it. HH: Now up in Chicago, a Hillary Clinton/Bill Clinton protégé, and Barack Obama protégé, Rahm Emmanuel, is the mayor, and he’s been involved in a cover-up and a scandal involving police violence. Should Rahm Emmanuel resign? JB: I think that Rahm Emmanuel should embrace an outside investigation of the practices of the police in Chicago, where you have extraordinary increases in violence and death, and you have cover-ups that clearly have taken place. And for his own reputation, he should embrace an outside view of this. Whether he should resign or not, I’d leave that up to him. But I think that there should be, to kind of defiantly go about this, when there are these scandals that have taken place, I think is just plain wrong. Government works when people trust that the people in government are working on their behalf. But when elected officials do the things that they do, that trust is violated, then you have a really dangerous situation. And I think Mayor Emmanuel is a gifted politician. He understands the challenge that’s faced. He should just turn the tables, accept an independent investigation, and then do what politicians used to do that seem not to do it anymore. Stop saying the dog ate my homework. Start fixing things. Accept responsibility. My goodness, you know, there are people that run to the fire, and there are people that run away from the fire. And we have too many politicians right now that when they see a problem under their watch, run away, blame somebody else, blame their predecessor, blame the climate, blame whatever it is, instead of saying this happened on my watch, I’m going to fix it. That’s what he should be doing. HH: Boy, you know, you sound like, I don’t know if you’ve seen the movie, 13 Hours, yet, but that’s the impression one gets of Hillary Clinton when Benghazi was on fire, Governor Bush. Have you seen 13 Hours, yet? JB: I haven’t. Doesn’t it come out next week? HH: Yeah, but I got to see a screener, and some people, there are screeners out there. I’ll be right back, one more short segment with former Governor Jeb Bush. — – – — HH: Governor Bush, there was an interesting piece today that suggests 43, your brother, W., is going to hit the campaign trail with you. Do you have plans for that? JB: Not yet, but my brother happens to be one of the most popular Republicans out there, maybe the most popular Republican, and he’s going to vote for me, and he supports me, and he’s given me good advice and it’s been helpful. And we’re trying to sort all that out. Look, I love my brother, and I’m honored to have his support, but I know at the end of the day, I’ve got to go earn this as well. There are high expectations on me, given my family. The only higher expectations that exist are on myself, by myself, and I know that ultimately, this is my challenge. But having a brother that has done this is, you know, and by your side to help, is great. HH: Yeah, in South Carolina especially… JB: The rest of my family has been supportive as well. HH: In South Carolina, especially with Cologne attacks on New Year’s Eve, with the attack today in Charlie Hebdo anniversary, which thank God was stopped short, with the Paris attacks, San Bernardino attacks, I think people have an appreciation for what he did that would be powerful on the campaign trail after the first couple of touching gloves in Iowa and New Hampshire. Have you talked about it with him? JB: I haven’t talked to him directly about it. I intend to do it. I’m really focused on making progress in the first two states, as you said, as we touch gloves. But there’ll be time to talk about this, and it’s certainly under consideration for sure. HH: All right, last question, you’ve got brother and father down in Texas, so Jerry Jones has got to come across your radar occasionally. JB: (laughing) Once in a while. HH: So the Ohio primary is coming up. Can you persuade Jerry Jones to take Johnny Manziel off the Browns’ hands? That could get you Ohio. JB: I saw, the last Cowboy game that Robert Griffith’s family was dressed up in a Cowboy jersey with his number. HH: Yeah, everyone’s trying to get to Dallas. But I’m telling you… JB: I know you’re a Cleveland fan. HH: Yeah. JB: I think you’re stuck with Manziel for a little bit more, my friend. HH: This is an unfortunate development, and you guys did not come through for, and you did not come through for Ohio State when Florida took on Alabama in the SEC championship, either, Governor… JB: Hey, but Hugh, just remember, you stole the national championship from the University of Miami. HH: Oh, dear, he’s still bitter. Governor, good luck out there in New Hampshire, I will talk to you again in a couple of weeks, and I appreciate you taking the time today. Thank you, Governor. JB: Thank you. End of interview. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
Congressman Mike Pompeo, a member of both the House Intelligence Committee and the Select Committee on Benghazi, joined me in the second hour of today’s show, and gave a pretty detailed roadmap of what is ahead, and all of it is bad news for former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton: Audio: 08-26hhs-pompeo Transcript: HH: Welcome back America. It’s Hugh Hewitt. Joined now by Congressman Mike Pompeo, a member of the House Intelligence Committee. He represent great district in Kansas – Kansas 4th. Congressman, welcome back. It’s great to have you back. MP: Hugh, it’s great to be on the show. HH: I am alarmed by the number of people with sensitive compartmented information outside of skiffs – special facilities for the use of compartmented information. Are you scratching your head at how it managed to get into – I mean, David Kendall is a lawyer, but that doesn’t mean you get to give him his SCI stuff. MP: It’s absurd Hugh. We still don’t frankly have a handle on exactly the chain of custody of how exactly this material moved around, and your point is well taken. We give some level of clearance to attorneys for particular matters, but still have handling requirements attached to the information transfer and top-secret SAF information goes only to a very few. It appears Mr. Kendall didn’t have that. HH: Has the FBI approached the committe as sometimes happened the Benghazi Special Investigation Committee of which you were a member and asked you not to proceed because you’ll interfere with their investigation or compromise the indictability of some people? MP: Our committee continues to move forward, Hugh. We’re still working. We still got a number of interviews. We have Cheryl Mills and Jake Sullivan – senior State Department employees that will testify next week, and so I intend to move forward October 22nd with former Secretary Clinton and lots of folks in between. HH: Now the Cheryl Mills and Jake Sullivan interviews – will those be closed to the public and can go as long as you want them to go? MP: They are going to be close to the public. They’ll be conducted by members and staff and we will get a chance to ask all of our questions just as we expect to do with former Secretary Clinton as well. HH: Have you been informed of Miss Mills and Mr. Sullivan will be accompanied by counsel? MP: I don’t know the answer to that. The committee would know. I guess I don’t know. I fully expect they’ll have counsel with them just as Sydney Blumethal had counsel with him. Many of them were senior witnesses that had shown up with their own personal attorneys. HH: I’m curious with if you’re allowed to tell me if Blumethal’s attorney made objections repeatedly in the course of the conversaton if he or she played a passive role. MP: Well, I’d rather not get into it. We tried our best to keep the content of these interviews private. I rather just not comment on that, Hugh. HH: Do witnesses receive the 18 USC 1001 warning that any statement that they make that is false is in fact a crime? MP: Every single witness that has testified before – both in the Intelligence Committee related to Benghazi and the Benghazi Committee – has been under the clear instructions that are to speak truthfully and completely, and the results of that could in fact could violation of federal law. I think they all were well-aware of that when they spoke to our committee. HH: Now Congressman Pompeo – you’re a former prosecutor, Harvard Law guy. Trey Gowdy’s a prosecutor. You got all these prosecutors up there. This is a very serious committee that everyone said should never have started on the Democratic side. Have they at least shut up about that now on the Democratic side or are they still complaining about the province of the committee? MP: Hugh, its been remarkable, to be honest with you, to watch the Democrats on the Benghazi Committee actually advocate on behalf of the administration instead of doing their duty. We have a charter -this entire committee has a charter, including the Democrats – they have not moved on from this. Mr. Cummings and Mr. Schiff continue to assert that this is pure politics, but last time I checked, the FBI wasn’t part of the vast right wing conspiracy. And we now have a broad swath of Americans understanding that our committee has behaved precisely as the Speaker demanded – get the facts. Find out why it is the case the four Americans were killed. Now almost three years ago, Hugh, get those facts and answers and get them out to the public and when we’ve done, we will have completed our mission. HH: Have you happened to see the trailer for the Michael Bay movie? I think it’s Thirteen Hours. Is that what this is? MP: I have not seen the trailer. I know the movie you’re referring to, but I’ve not seen the trailer. HH: It’s gut-wrenching. Okay, last couple of quick questions. Other than Mills and Sullivan, are there other witnesses between now and the Secretary? MP: There are. We have other State Department employees. We have a handful of folks that were in other places in government and so we still got a fairly long list of folks to get through and I don’t think they’re scheduled yet, but they will all occur between now and October 22nd and that wouldn’t surprise people what we have a few interviews to complete even after that day. HH: And does Mr. Kendall get access to the interviews prior to the Secretary’s testimony in order to conform her story to whatever’s been said? MP: Well, the information is supposed to be private. I’m hopeful that none of the members of the committee would’ve provided this information anyone. But there would have been counsel to some of the witnesses who would have been there and they certainly would have had access to their witnesses’ testimonies, so I suppose it’s possible. He’ll have had access to those interviews before she speaks to us on the 22nd. HH: But the 22nd is public. MP: The 22nd is public, open. Mr. Kendall has made the committment that former Secretary Clinton will stay until we are done asking questions and I expect them to honor that committment. HH: Oh, that could go twent-four, thirty hours. MP: Well, I’ll buckle in, Hugh. HH: I’m looking forward to that one. Congressman Mike Pompeo, thank you. Great to speak with you. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
It is going to be one great year for political talk radio, and mine began with New jersey Governor Chris Christie: Audio: 01-04hhs-christie Transcript: HH: So great to begin it with New Jersey Governor Chris Christie, who gave a major speech on his campaign today in New Hampshire. Governor Christie, Happy New Year to you. CC: Thank you, Hugh, and Happy New Year to you. HH: There’s a lot to talk about in this speech, but I have to begin with some less-than-serious questions first of all. CC: Right. HH: You’re friends with Jerry Jones, right? CC: I am. HH: All right. Can we get you to call him to take Manziel off our hands? I mean, don’t you think… CC: (laughing) No thanks, buddy. HH: Now look, look, he would do great in Dallas, Governor. He’s just not our guy in Cleveland. I just renewed my Cleveland Browns season tickets. We’re going to draft a new QB. He would be great in Dallas. CC: Listen, he hadn’t, no one’s ever gotten in trouble for partying in Dallas, right, Hugh? So Johnny Manziel would be perfect for Dallas. That’d be great. HH: So you’re not buying my pitch, huh? CC: No, that’s classic New Jersey sarcasm. HH: Okay, okay, just asking, then. CC: (laughing) HH: Second question, are you a Downton Abbey guy? CC: I am not. HH: Is Mary Pat a Downton Abbey person? CC: Mary Pat is not a Downton Abbey person, either. No, neither one of us. HH: Because it had a prosecution in it that took four seasons to wrap up. And I was going to ask you about that. Are you a Homeland person? Do you watch Homeland? CC: I do not watch Homeland, either. HH: What do you do for popular culture? CC: (laughing) Run for president, Hugh. That’s what I do. HH: Well, there is a piece of popular culture coming out called 13 Hours. It’s a movie by Michael Bay, which I happened to have seen a screening of. It’s about Benghazi. CC: Yeah. HH: It’s an amazing movie. It doesn’t say a word about Hillary, or President Obama. But it damns them. Do you think Benghazi is going to be an issue through this campaign? CC: Yes, as will all the judgments that the Obama-Clinton team have made in foreign policy and that have put us in such an awful position – weakness, timidity, that have been interpreted appropriately by the world as weakness and timidity, and have caused more violence, more danger for Americans and other freedom-loving folks around the world. And all of that, including Benghazi, will be a part of her record, and part of the record that I will prosecute against her come next September. HH: Here’s what the former First Lady and former Secretary of State had to say yesterday about the Saudi Arabian-Iranian confrontation. HRC: I think that even our friends who we work with on so many other areas should not be immune from our criticism and our questions about rule of law, about their treatment of minorities. But clearly, this raises serious questions that we have to raise directly with the Saudi government. I think this is counterproductive for them. This will inflame the region even more, and I think cause even more dissent and more upheaval within Saudi Arabia. So even in the short and medium term, I don’t think it was a smart decision for them to make, and I will criticize them publicly about that. HH: Now Governor Christie, after screwing up Libya, Egypt, Iraq, Syria, she condemns one of our last remaining allies in the region? Isn’t that astonishing? CC: Well, I mean, if you want to talk about inflaming the region, she and the President know a lot about inflaming the region by doing what they did with Iran. That’s done more to inflame the region and cause danger for folks in the region, and now having Iran continue to play this role in Syria, the fact is that Mrs. Clinton has done enough. She’s done enough damage. And it’s time to get her out from behind the foreign policy wheel, because she doesn’t belong there. She is a dangerous driver of American foreign policy. She doesn’t know what she’s doing. And what she’s causing now is to have us have even fewer and fewer friends. Should we be concerned about human rights abuses in Saudi Arabia? Of course, we should. And we should have those conversations quietly and public as friends do. HH: Now do you see an emerging possibility of, there apparently are talks between Saudi Arabia and, of all people, Israel. Egypt and Israel are apparently cooperating on the war against ISIS in the Sanai Peninsula. King Abdullah is doing everything he can to keep Syria from spilling over. Is there a possibility that with leadership, we could put together a Sunni alliance that would be strong and enduring? CC: Absolutely, there is. And they’re begging for us to do it. Include the Emirates in that group as well. They’re begging for us to do it. But they want to know that we’re going to be good to our word. They want to know that when we say we’re in, we’re in, and that we’re going to work with them and not face every policy decision on the next poll or focus group, which is what this administration has done, or the opinions of the Nobel Committee. I mean, so you know, the fact is that we have to put American interests first. And having a strong Sunni Arab alliance with the United States is, in my view, in American interests. HH: Now Governor, I want to turn to your St. Anselm College speech today. Chris Cillizza over at the Washington Post has posted the entire thing, which I actually don’t think I’ve seen in the Washington Post for a long time. But the key takeaway, as I read through it, is anger alone is not a solution. So clearly, you’re feeling the heat out there that is generating so much turmoil on the Republican side. CC: No question. Listen, we see it around the country, Hugh. It’s not just up here in New Hampshire. It’s all over the country. The voters are angry, frustrated and anxiety-ridden because of the incompetence of this government. The way to solve that is to make the government work again. The way to solve that is to put somebody in charge who’s a grown up, who’s made difficult decisions in executive positions before, and knows how to execute upon them and make it work. And so my argument today in the St. Anselm speech is there’s much more that unites us than divides us as Republicans. And if we divide each other, we guarantee a Hillary Clinton victory. And what we need is someone who understands this anger, who’s heard it, who has internalized it, and now can turn that anger into productive results for the American people. HH: Now at one point, you write show time is over. We are not electing an entertainer-in-chief. Showmanship is fun, but it is not the kind of leadership that will change America. If we were going to turn our frustration and anger with the D.C. insiders, the politicians of yesterday and the carnival barkers of today into something that actually changes Americans’ lives, we must elect someone who has been tested. Is that a broadside at Donald Trump? CC: That’s a broadside at all the people who have used this on that stage as an opportunity to just say things that people want to hear, and who don’t understand what it means to actually have to then get those things done. And it’s failure of our government leaders to get things done, both Republicans in Congress and the Democrat in the White House, that has led to the enormous frustration and anger of the American people. And so anyone who is not proposing serious solutions like I have on entitlement reform, which no one else has done, proposed serious solutions on military preparedness, as you know I have done across the board with new military support levels, and the modernization of our nuclear capability, doesn’t belong sitting behind the desk in the Oval Office. When I say show time is over, I mean it’s time for us to demand serious answers from the folks who are running for president, and to then test those serious answers. And that’s what I’m saying. HH: At the last debate, you just referenced our nuclear triad. I brought that up to both Donald Trump and Marco Rubio. I did not have a chance to put the question to you, though I would have loved to. What did you make of Donald Trump’s response and of Marco Rubio’s response? CC: Well listen, as for Donald’s response, it just sounded like he did not know what the nuclear triad was. And if he did, he didn’t give any specific priorities or answers as to you know, exactly what he would do and address as president on the nuclear triad. I made it really clear, as you know, that I believe the Ohio-Class submarines need to be dealt with first. I think that’s the most important part of the nuclear triad for us. It’s the most flexible, it’s the most mobile, it’s the most protectable, and it’s the one that we should modernize first. And so my priorities have been set, and you know, we said those in a speech in Portsmouth, New Hampshire, back in May of 2015. HH: Right. CC: So we’ve been on the record on this, and you know, I think that I’ve given a direct and very substantive response on this. And I think that’s what you should demand of anybody who’s a serious candidate for president of the United States. HH: Do you have a senior foreign policy cabinet, something I ask Donald about whenever he comes on, and he keeps promising it to me. I’m sure he will eventually deliver it. But who is the senior foreign policy advisory circle around Chris Christie? CC: Well, you mean currently? HH: Yeah. CC: Well listen, as I think we’ve talked about this before, you know, the first and most important mentor I’ve had on this is Henry Kissinger, and that I’ve been meeting directly with Dr. Kissinger for 18 months now going through issues of foreign policy. And he’s been incredibly generous with his time and with his advice. Brian Hook is another person who I’ve worked very closely with over the course of time. And he’s coordinated briefings with me with people both in the Defense realm who have been very helpful, and in the foreign policy world. HH: So they’re sticking with you? Are they putting their name on the endorsement line, especially Dr. Kissinger? CC: Well, I don’t think Dr. Kissinger is in the position where he’s endorsing anyone. I think Dr. Kissinger has made it really clear that he wants to be a resource for serious candidates for president of the United States. But I know that he and I have met frequently. We’re meeting again in the near future. And it’s been an enormous help to me to help to get his input on the strategic view of the world not only as events occur now, but also looking down the road and anticipating events that could happen. HH: All right, let me turn to back to the speech you gave today. There’s a line in there that resonated with me. The election of 1980 took place in another atmosphere of crisis as the Carter administration had presided over economic hardships at home and embarrassments abroad. Carter also made a change in his last year. Do you see any change in this president’s last year? CC: No. I think we’re going to get more of the same from this president in his last year. In fact, you’re going to get more of the same on steroids. I think he’s just going to continue to be the petulant child that he is. The more the American people reject his policies, the more he attempts to implement them. I mean, if you look at what’s happened, Hugh, over the course of his presidency, when he came in, in 2008, he ushered in a big House majority for the Democrats. He ushered in a filibuster-proof Democratic majority in the Senate. And he had 29 of the 50 governorships in the country were in the hands of Democrats. What’s happened seven years later? The largest House majority for Republicans since 1928, a now-Republican majority in the United States Senate, and 31 of the 50 governorships are now in the hands of the Republican party. The voters have made wholesale rejection of his liberal, Democratic policies, and those of Hillary Clinton. And it’s on that basis that I am going to fight this election come this fall against Mrs. Clinton. HH: Now if I know my President Obama, and I follow him pretty closely, the Hammond, Oregon takeover of the wildlife refuge empty building will become very important to him. It will become an occasion for him to preen and to proclaim. Do you agree with me about that? CC: Yeah, I think it sounds like something the President will pontificate on. HH: And what ought the Republicans to be saying about what is a lawless action? CC: Listen, this is what I’ve said. I’ve said that the most important thing is you have to make clear to folks that the law will be enforced, that laws matter, and that the law will be enforced. Now you should attempt to do that if you can, Hugh, without the loss of human life. That should always be the goal of law enforcement when enforcing the law, that if we can enforce the law without the loss of human life, we need to do so and at least try to do so. But in the end, the guiding principle must be that we must enforce the law. HH: Okay, now a lot of African-Americans who hear that think Tamir Rice, LaQuan McDonald. They think about everything that we have seen over the last year. Are they wrong to believe that there are two standards at work here? CC: Listen, justice in this country is a constantly evolving, challenging thing. And as a member of the Department of Justice for seven years, let me tell you what I used to tell every assistant United States Attorney when I walked them in before I swore them in for their office as a federal prosecutor. I would ask them to read aloud the seal of the Department. And they would say out loud the Department of Justice. And I said right. That doesn’t say the Department of Prosecutions. It says the Department of Justice. And your job is to make sure that in everything we do and oversee, that justice is done. Enforcing the law will make that happen. And if you have law enforcement officers who operate outside the line, you need to hold them to account by enforcing the law in the exact same way against them that you would against any other American citizen. That’s the type of Attorney General I’ll hire as president. And that’s the type of president I will be – enforcing the law, fairly, evenly and justly. It’s the job of the Department of Justice, and that’s the kind of Attorney General I’ll have. They will execute their job in that way. HH: It’s pretty clear that Chicago is melting down. Should Rahm Emmanuel resign? CC: Listen, you know, resignation is a very personal decision. I think that first, the Mayor of Chicago has to answer some questions. He has to really come clean with what went on in Chicago, and why there has been such a disintegration of order in Chicago, and why the people of Chicago fear that they’ve been lied to. And so I think before we even discuss resignation, Hugh, we need to discuss transparency from the Mayor of Chicago. HH: Does he need to do a Chris Christie two and a half hour press conference like you did after the Bridgegate thing? CC: I absolutely think that what would be smart for the Mayor to do is get out there in front of the Chicago press corps and the national press corps and answer every question just like I did for an hour and 50 minutes until they have no questions left. And that’s where you start to regain the trust of the people that you represent. HH: Well said. Back to the speech, you said today there’s been a lot of wild talk lately about third party runs or a brokered convention, or big GOP donors switching to Democrats if they don’t like our nominee. I’m one of those people that don’t think it’s wrong to think we might have an open convention because of our rules set. But I also don’t think that’s wild talk. That’s just kind of the way the rules are. Would an open convention be the worst thing in the world, Chris Christie? CC: Listen, I don’t think it’s the best thing in the world to defeat Hillary Clinton. And I am singularly focused on defeating Hillary Clinton, and I would like us as a party to come to a consensus and have a nominee prior to the convention. I think that makes the process of focusing on our general election opponent as quickly as possible, easiest. And so listen, as you said, given our rules and everything else, you know, you can’t control what’s going to happen. The voters in the Republican Party are going to determine what’s going to happen. But yeah, I think it would be much better for us to avoid a brokered convention if we could, and have a consensus nominee by the time we walk into the Q Center in Cleveland this July. HH: Where Johnny Manziel should not be a member of the Browns, but should be… CC: (laughing) HH: I’m telling you, you could do very well on March 15th in Ohio if you work… CC: Look, let me just, Hugh, let me just say this. I’m really glad we drafted Zack Martin, All-Pro Zach Martin from the University of Notre Dame. HH: Okay, going back to what I was going to ask you about politics, you’re doing very well in New Hampshire. You’ve got a sneaky campaign on the ground in Iowa. A lot of people aren’t looking at it. I want to ask you about South Carolina. And Dan Balz is coming up after you. And I’ve been making notes. South Carolina is a coastal state driven by tourism with a lot of people who are new to it with a lot of different ethnic identifications and a governor you’ve worked with for a long time. Has Chris Christie got a campaign in South Carolina we should be looking at? CC: Chris Christie has a campaign in South Carolina you should be looking at. And what’s going to happen is after I do very well in Iowa and New Hampshire, we’re going to head immediately to South Carolina personally, and we are going to work that next ten days. We’ll be in South Carolina at least two more times in the month of January to be working down in South Carolina. And so you know, yeah, you should be looking at what we’re going to do in South Carolina. And the fact is that we hope to be able to attract a lot of new and different voters who are Republicans in South Carolina, as you said, who have come to South Carolina recent vintage, and are wanting a real strong, direct, blunt leader to help lead our country. And I think we’ll do well there. HH: Are there some coastal development issues that are unique to states like Jersey and South Carolina that live in the hurricane world? CC: Absolutely, there are. And you know, quite frankly, I think that in many ways, South Carolina was a little bit ahead of New Jersey pre-Hurricane Sandy in terms of the way they dealt with coastal development. And so we’re adopting a number of the things that have been done in South Carolina for some time in New Jersey in the post-Sandy world in terms of elevation of homes, and protection of the coastline. We’re getting some help from the federal government and the Army Corps of Engineers in that regard as well. And I think we’ll be much better positioned if and when another storm comes than we were on October of 2012. HH: And back to the speech to wrap up, you said there are many Republican voters who are supporting what the media calls protest candidates like Donald Trump, Ted Cruz and Ben Carson. But most, if not all, of these same voters are loyal Republicans who voted for Mitt Romney in 2012 and John McCain in 2008 and President George W. Bush in 2000 and 2004. These same voters, these voters so demonized in the press, played a critical role of putting the Republicans in charge of the House and the Senate, and put 31 governorships into the state capital. Do you think they can become Christie voters? CC: Of course, they can, because what they’re looking for is someone who is tough, who stands on principles, who is blunt and direct, and who can get things done for them. So absolutely, those folks can become Christie voters. Some of them already are Christie voters. And I think we’ll win many more converts in the course of the next four weeks in Iowa, and the next five weeks in New Hampshire. But my point today in the speech, Hugh, was that a divided Republican Party ensures a Hillary Clinton victory. And so while we need to have our arguments in the primary about who is best, I think what we need to have is a tested, mature leader who has gone through the wars, and gone through them recently, because that’s what it’s going to be against Hillary Clinton. And there are no silver medals in this one, Hugh. This is not like the Miss America pageant. The first runner-up doesn’t get to substitute for Miss America if she doesn’t work out. You know, you go home if you lose. And we need to put someone on that stage who can prosecute the case against Hillary Clinton, and I absolutely believe I’m the person that can more effectively do that in the current field. HH: So I want to close by talking about immigration, which you do a lot in this speech. The last time you were on, you said you were against the wall. I’m a big proponent of the wall. I have been for ten years as the visible expression of an invisible resolve to control our border. Are you open to arguments on that, Chris Christie, because I do think it’s a major touchstone for Republican primary voters, many of whom are not hard-liners on deportation, or in fact are like me, big fans of regularization, but who want control? CC: I am open to putting fencing and walling in the places where it’s most appropriate, which in my view, are in the most highly-populated areas. But I am not someone who believes in a thousands of miles of wall. I don’t think it’s necessary. I don’t think it’s effective. I don’t think it’s efficient. I think we can use electronic means like drones and cameras to be able to oversee the most remote parts of the border. We should be increasing the presence of the FBI, the DEA and the ATF at the border with Border Patrol agents to interdict drugs and guns. Those are the things that I think we need to be doing, in addition to walling or fencing in the appropriate areas, but not a wall across the entire border. I just don’t think that makes sense. HH: All right, last question is political. What are the expectations that you are managing for Iowa and New Hampshire, Governor? CC: We need to do well, Hugh, but you know, I think in the next week or two, we’ll have a much better handle on how that’s defined. You know, experts who have been around New Hampshire politics a lot longer than I, and Iowa politics, have told me that most polls in Iowa and New Hampshire don’t really matter until January 15th forward. And so we’re going to be taking a look at those, and then you know, I’m happy to come back on the show and set specific expectations for you about what we consider to be a good result on primary night in New Hampshire, and on Caucus night in Iowa. But suffice to say, if you’re any one of the 12 members of this race now, you have to do well in Iowa and New Hampshire. If you don’t do well in Iowa or New Hampshire, then you’re going home. HH: I also have to remind you to win the presidency, you’ve got to win Ohio, Governor, and I know Jerry Jones is on your speed dial right there. Third round, fourth round, that’s all I want. CC: (laughing) Let me tell you something. You want a third or fourth round pick for Johnny Manziel? HH: Yeah? CC: Are you kidding? Hugh, please, who do you think, I’m Barack Obama you’re negotiating with? HH: (laughing) On that note, Governor Chris Christie, I’ll talk to again mid-Iowa. Have a great speech today and thanks for spending so much time with me. CC: Thank you, Hugh. End of interview. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
When the blockbuster movie “13 Hours” opens this week there will follow a hard few days for President Obama and former Secretary of State Hillary Clinton. Hard, but not as hard as the years that have followed the families of Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens, Sean Smith, Tyrone Woods and Glen Doherty. The movie mentions neither the president nor the then secretary of state by name, and no expressed argument is made as to what the two did or didn’t do to assist their embattled ambassador, his staff, and the CIA Benghazi outpost on Sept. 11, 2012. But the overwhelming impression of the huge number of people certain to see the first big release of the year, will be that they did not do enough. In fact, it will be that they did nothing at all. Nothing. The producers of the movie gave gifted director Michael Bay exactly what he needed: an exact replica of the layout of the special mission and the CIA “annex” as well as the chaos that pulsed through the city before and during the attacks. The warrior heroes of the film get the honor they deserve, but the sense of their bravery is mirrored on the downside by the recognition of the cowardice of the political leadership that put them in Benghazi to fend for themselves in the first place. Four died. Many more were wounded. And then the lying began. That lying continues still, though as recently as last week it may have begun to break. Former CIA Director and retired Gen. David Petreaus was in closed session before the House Select Committee on Benghazi as the Trey Gowdy-led panel continues its painstaking inquiry into just what happened that night. “13 Hours” is going to tell everyone who is interested — and millions will be interested, and riveted, by the intense gunfight that breaks out early and never lets up until the dead are sent home — that the cries for help from the brave civilians and soldiers of Benghazi were many and urgent throughout the hours of attack. But the response was … silence. Hillary, of course, famously testified that she talked to the No. 2 in Tripoli, Gregory Hicks, and that later in the evening, as Hicks and his team evacuated to safer quarters and the ambassador’s death was confirmed, that she simply went home. It was, after all, late. She was tired. She had a private server at home to keep her up to speed. We still don’t know what the president was doing as brave men fought and some died. We do not know why Hillary didn’t call back Mr. Hicks. We do know she cut and ran that night. We also now know, thanks to the document dump Friday, that Hillary knew the rules about using private email (she was shocked others did so) and that she directed her staff to alter classified documents and send them to her via non-secure means, a violation of 18 U.S.C. Section 1924. But we don’t know if it will matter to the election of 2016. If Donald Trump makes an issue of her lawlessness regarding the server, the public will get the education it deserves on that front. It is director Bay, however, who will leave those who will open their eyes and ears to see and hear seething about Hillary’s massive fail that night in 2012. Democrats say Americans don’t care, that it is old news, that she testified for 11 hours, et cetera, et cetera. But now they get to see — to feel — what happened. “Game Change” is a book, a movie and yes, now a cliche. “13 Hours” and the latest smoking gun emails aren’t “game changes” in that sense. It doesn’t make political arguments or seek political changes. Rather the movie is simply and completely an indictment. Let’s hope that at least one from the Justice Department follows on some aspect of the corruption that pervaded the State Department, and the secretary and the president who superintended it.   This column was originally posted on WashingtonExaminer.com. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
Erwin Stoff is one of Hollywood’s most successful producers and he joined me today to talk about the release of the new blockbuster “13 Hours”: Audio: 01-14hhs-stoff Transcript: HH: Special show for you today. Of course, the Republican debate will be happening tonight, and I will cover that. I’ll also be on ABC News’ Nightline and Hannity later tonight. A Jakarta terror attack yesterday, a terror attack in Pakistan at a polio clinic, gives context to this hour’s interview. I’m so pleased to welcome, honored to talk to Erwin Stoff, who is the producer of 13 Hours, a fabled film executive whose list of credits include, among others, the Matrix, and the Blind Side, and The Lake House, and The Devil’s Advocate, and Unbroken. But 13 Hours, I think today’s Oscars were announced. A year from today, you’re going to see lots of mentions of 13 Hours. Erwin, welcome to the Hugh Hewitt Show, congratulations on a magnificent film. ES: Thank you very much. Thank you. HH: I’ve got to begin by asking you, I saw the film at the Paramount lot in December, and I wasn’t sure, I was sitting with a warrior who told me it was the most technically proficient movie about war that he’d ever seen. And I have seen the reviews, and they all pay homage to that. Are you surprised that you’ve swept everyone’s acknowledgement that you got it right? ES: I’m actually not surprised. I mean, I’m thrilled about it. But at the risk of not sounding humble, I’m not surprised only because of the amount of effort that went into this insofar as getting it right. If there was one thing that we, that was of greater importance to us than anything else, it was getting it right. HH: Now I want to walk through the story of how 13 Hours came to the screen. It opens tonight in a few places, and across the United States broadly. It will do incredible business, because the reviews are so extraordinary, and it’s a Michael Bay movie. But I want to begin with the central theme. Thucydides said 2,500 years ago the secret to happiness is freedom, and the secret to freedom is courage. This is a movie about warriors and courage, Erwin. And I don’t know if you set out to make that, but that’s what you got. ES: That is exactly what we set out to make. When I first met these guys, to be perfectly honest, or actually, I’ll backtrack for one second. I was very reticent about doing the movie only because by the time this came about, the sort of political fracas over Benghazi had already started. And I was very reticent about wading into that. Once I was persuaded to meet these guys, and once I met them, there was nothing that was going to keep me from making the movie, only because they are such extraordinary guys. They were so selfless, gave of themselves so much. A couple of them made the ultimate sacrifice. And so to me, it really was from the outset a movie that was going to be about courage, self-sacrifice, and you know, what one is willing to do insofar as giving of themselves for the sake of others. HH: Now I will tell people, and this is a center-right audience, obviously. It’s carried across the United States. This is not a political movie, though it will have a political impact. It is relentlessly not political in fact, Erwin. Would you agree with me about that? ES: I would. There’s nothing in this movie that is conjecture. Everything in this movie has been verified by at least two sources. The movie is based on a book by the same title, written by a very respected journalist by the name of Mitch Zuckoff. And he really set out to write a true accounting of what happened that night. And to be honest with you, to make a political movie would be short-changing what these guys did. HH: Yup. And the chief critic of Variety calls 13 Hours and experiential tour de force, but a contextual blur, a movie that captures the confusion of the events as they unfolded on the ground. And I have told people since December when I saw it, I’m not a warrior. I’m not a soldier, a sailor, an Airman or a Marine, and I haven’t stayed at a Holiday Inn. But I think I know a little bit more about what it’s like to be in the middle of a firefight and a gunfight now because of this movie, and I don’t know that I’ve ever said that about a movie before. ES: Yeah, again, we had, these guys were intimately involved in the writing of the book. It is their account of what happened on the ground. And they were intimately involved in the actual production of the movie. So again, there is nothing in the movie that didn’t occur. Some of the smallest details in the movie are in fact what occurred on the ground. HH: I have to tell you a funny story. ES: There are scenes… HH: I got a call from USA Today to ask me, they saw that I had seen the movie, and they wanted my opinion of how John Krasinski did as a special operator, and how he held a machine gun. And I said you might as well ask me how he holds a ketchup bottle. I don’t know anything about that. But you obviously had technical advisors of the greatest sort. You had the guys who were there on the ground. ES: Well, we had sort of two levels. We had the real guys that were there on the ground, and then a lot of the background players who were other SEALs and Delta guys and so on, are all real former SEALs. Michael Bay is a nut for authenticity, and Michael Bay, there’s never been a SEAL or a special operator in any of his movies that is not a real former SEAL or a real former special operator. HH: Oh, that’s why it has that obvious ability to take an active duty warrior, who I was with, who said wow, they got it exactly right. Now let me ask you how you came to this. You can make any movie you want, Erwin, and we’ll talk a little bit about that. By the way, it’s a sad day, Alan Rickman passing today. Did you ever work with Alan Rickman? ES: I did not, but I was an enormous fan. HH: Yeah, as was, I think, all of us. Michael Collins came to mind, but many other fine movies. So you can make any movie that you want. Why did you take on what could become a politically-charged hot potato? You’ve avoided that, but why would you do it? ES: The reason that I really wanted to make the movie was that when I met the five guys, I just felt so strongly that they deserved to have their story told, because what I thought was so unjust was that their story had been eclipsed by all of the politics surrounding it. And what I felt was it was so unjust that these six guys, one of whom, as I said, gave his life and make the ultimate sacrifice, who were responsible for saving the lives of 30-some odd people, because that’s the story that has not been told. 30-some odd people got to return home to their wives, to their husbands, to their children, et cetera. And 30-some odd Americans today are alive because of what these guys did. And as such, I really felt it was my privilege and it was my honor to tell their story. HH: Now Glen Dougherty and Ty Woods among the dead, along with Sean Smith and Ambassador Stevens, and they’re all depicted with extraordinary appreciation for their sacrifice. I mean, Chris Stevens’ family, I don’t know if they’ve seen it, I can’t imagine they won’t be happy with the representation of a selfless hero, the Ambassador to Libya, who went into the war zone. I can’t imagine that anyone will be unhappy with this. But you tell me. Have you heard from any of the families of the victims? ES: Yes, a number of the families have seen the movie. One of the more difficult moments in this whole process was actually watching the movie with Tyrone Woods’ mom. HH: Wow. ES: And that was a very tough, that was a tough thing, and I can’t even imagine how tough it was for her. Then, a couple of days ago, we watched the movie together with Glen Dougherty’s sister and brother-in-law. So a lot of the families, the movie has been screened for Tyrone Woods’ wife. And again, I mean, if nothing else comes of it, one of the things she said is when their children, when their child is old enough, she looks forward to being able to show him the movie and go that’s the kind of hero your dad was. HH: Wow. Now I know Dorothy. I have met Dorothy. So that is the highest compliment you could possibly get. ES: That’s what I feel. So if nothing else happens out of it, that in itself has been an enormously gratifying thing. HH: Well, a lot is going to happen. I think you’re going to have a tidal wave box office. I know it is testing well, because your colleagues in the production of the movie who stay in touch with me tell me whatever the quadrant system is that the studios use, everybody loves the movie. Is that still holding to be true? ES: Yes. One of the really extraordinary things is that when you make a movie, you go and do some market research. And one of the really extraordinary experiences that I’ve had in this movie is that the quadrant, or the group of people whom the movie actually tested higher with were women 35 and above. HH: That’s so remarkable. We’ll come back and talk about that, as well as some of his other movies and how they compare. I’m a huge fan of Erwin Stoff. One of my favorite movies ever, actually, he produced, maybe I’ll play a clip from that when we come back. — – – – – HH: That, of course, is Al Pacino from The Devil’s Advocate, one of the movies of my guest, Erwin Stoff, who is the producer of 13 Hours, which debuts tonight and over this weekend. I thought of that, and it’s one of my favorite sequences in film, Erwin, because you got the best out of Al Pacino in that scene, and you get the best out of John Krasinski and everybody in this scene, and I mean, Michael Bay does. How do you go about staffing a movie about heroes and not pick superstars? John Krasinski, of course, is big, but he’s not Pacino big. What was the choice there? ES: The reason that we made the casting choices we did was that again, what was most important to us was not to make a Hollywood movie, but what was most important to us was to keep a sense of our similitude. What was most important to us was to keep the audience involved with the real story, and to continue to have the audience feel that they were there on the ground with these real guys. And we didn’t want the audience distracted by movie stars. So we very purposely set about casting the best actors, again, I think we have just a spectacular, spectacular cast, but they are not people whom you have identified with a particular role or a particular set of movies, or anything like that. We really wanted the event and these real guys to continue to feel like they are the stars of the movie. HH: Now Krasinski was an interesting choice. I got asked by the USA Today person what I think about it, and I said look, I saw him in Away We Go with Maya Rudolph, and I knew he could act in anything other than sitcoms and other big things, but I’d nevertheless, it’s a revelation. But what’s good is most people don’t get this. Special operators come in all sizes and shapes. They don’t come, they’re all not breachers and big behemoth guys. They come in all sizes and shapes. ES: Exactly. The thing about John Krasinski, and it’s funny, I made a movie about two years ago called Edge Of Tomorrow with Tom Cruise. HH: Yes. ES: …and Emily Blunt. And Emily is married to John, so I got to know John in that context. I knew that he came from a military family. I knew this was a world he really understood. And it was pure instinct. I asked John to come in and audition, and in the very audition, he completely knocked us out. HH: Huh. That is a, I didn’t understand it worked that way. How did you get Michael Bay to say yes, because obviously, he can do whatever he wants to do? ES: Well, it was interesting. There were a couple of other Benghazi movies that were circling around, but they were not movies, they were not scripts that had this level of truth and reality to them, only because we had the rights to the guys’ stories that were there on the ground. The others were all based on say so. So I had known that Michael had turned the others down. It was a shot in the dark, and I wasn’t particularly optimistic, only because I knew he had turned the others down, and I wish I could say it was particularly hard. We got him the script, he read it over a weekend. The following Monday or Tuesday, I was sitting with him at his house. By then, he had a script that was fully annotated and he had notes written on it, both on the script and the book. And by the end of that meeting, he said I want to make this as my next movie. I want to start it in the spring, which was six months ahead from the time that we sat and met, and we were green lit, as it were, as a movie, within a matter of weeks. HH: Now I will come back after the break and talk about the actual physical making. But I have a question for Erwin Stoff. We’re about the same age. And so we’ve seen war movie heroes evolve from John Wayne in The Longest Day, to John Krasinski in 13 Hours. And it’s a great change, which you’ve lived as a movie producer. I think it is a tribute to what they do that we actually get the real worldview. Have they told you that? ES: Yes, completely. Completely. You know, I think what’s happened in the last number of years is because of the media and because of television, the media documentaries, reality shows, etc., etc., etc., we’ve all become much more savvy. And I think whereas John Wayne spoke to a particular tone in the country and so on at that time, I think we know it’s a much more complex and complicated and shaded and gray world today. So I think today, depiction of heroes have to really, those depictions today have to exist in a very real world context. HH: Erwin Stoff, I also was asked by one of my law partners, Robert O’Brien, who has been on the ground in Afghanistan as part of the rule of law effort there, he’s been all throughout the Middle East as part of the U.N. He was Bolton’s deputy. How did they get the so-called Arab Street? And I said the chaos and the confusion is there from the moment of the first opening. And I don’t know how long it took to get that right, but I’m sure people will agree with me that that is accurately portrayed. Have you heard that? ES: Yes. Yes, and again, Michael is a master at this. You know, life got much easier for me when Michael Bay came on to make the movie. HH: I’m sure. I’ll be right back with Erwin Stoff. The movie is 13 Hours. — – – – – HH: The score is magnificent. Before I move on to the set, who did the score for you, Erwin? And tell people about how integral that is to this particular movie. ES: Well, the score was one of the most important, the score was one of the most important elements only because again, what was so important to us was to make an emotionally compelling movie. So the score was done by Hans Zimmer, who’s won I don’t know how many Academy Awards. HH: Right. ES: He’s one of the foremost composers in the movie business. HH: And how long did it take him to do? I’m fascinated by the challenge that this presents, of a real drama with real people and real heroes that is a political hot potato. How long did it take Hans Zimmer to score this? ES: Oh, again, just because you’re dealing with a consummate professional, it just took a couple of months, only because we were under great pressure to get the movie out. We wanted the movie out tomorrow, so we had an unusually short post-production period. And again, only with a pro like Michael Bay can you get a movie like this out quickly. The movie was started nine months almost to the date before the movie is released. HH: Why do you want a January release? For years, the cliché is that’s a bad time to release a movie. Why did you want a January release? ES: Because traditionally, these movies, similarly-themed movies have done very well in January. It’s the window that American Sniper was released in, and it’s the window that Lone Survivor was released in. HH: A-ha. Okay. Now going back to the sets, because I am blown away by the accuracy of the detail of the diplomatic compound as well as the CIA annex, where did you build these? And who helped you get them built to detail? ES: Well, again, what we did is we had actual plans and satellite images of the original structures, and we had the guys. So we exactly, we built these, we replicated both the annex and the diplomatic mission exactly to the inch of… HH: Has that been done before? ES: Not to my knowledge. HH: That’s why it’s so, yeah, the loss of Chris Stevens in the safe room is much detailed and is public knowledge. But you don’t really understand how it can happen until you see this movie. That’s what I think a lot of people may have gotten from Mitchell Zuckoff’s 2014 book. And your writer, Chuck Hogan, gets kind of the chaos and the desperation of it. But you would have had to actually, did they try and recreate the movements as best they knew of the victims? ES: Yes, absolutely. HH: Gosh, that is so hard to do. Now Chuck Hogan is your writer. ES: Yeah. HH: Mitch Zuckoff is the author of the book. What’s that collaboration like? ES: It was actually really close. Mitch Zuckoff and I told him, I told him not to get used to having this kind of continued involvement in movies that he makes in the future, because in all of the movies that I’ve ever directed, I never had an author stay this involved with a movie. And while Chuck Hogan certainly had the ability and the freedom, and he availed himself of it, to call the real guys and say I’m writing this scene, where did you walk to, where did you sit, what was exactly the dialogue in the scene and so on. Mitch Zuckoff spent huge amounts of time with these guys. So Mitch was an enormous, enormous asset for us all throughout production. HH: And so where was the set built? ES: We built the set on two empty lots. Both sets were built on two empty lots in Malta. And most movies you see now, and for the last, I don’t know, ten, fifteen years that depict the Middle East, most of those will be shot, were all shot in Malta, only because the architecture in Malta is of Middle Eastern origin, but it’s a completely safe environment to work. And so we built the sets in Malta. We shot in Malta for nine weeks. And then we went to Morocco for one week. HH: And I want to emphasize to everyone, you’ll think you’re in Benghazi, because you’re hot from the moment the movie begins. And what was the temperature at the time of filming, by the way? ES: It was really hot. I mean, I don’t think we ever had a day under a hundred degrees. HH: Yeah, I’ve been on Malta, and it’s a lovely place, and it’s a historically significant place, but I wouldn’t want to work there for nine weeks. Honestly, I just wouldn’t want to…I’ll come back. One more segment with Erwin Stoff. — – — – HH: I saw it at a screening at the Paramount lot in December. I saw it with a warrior. I saw it with a flack. I saw it with a bunch of career Navy professionals who were there. And we were all blown away. And everyone I’ve talked to who have seen it has said the same thing. It’s an intense experience. You won’t know how long the movie is. I have no idea how long the movie is, because you can’t look up from it. And I’m talking with producer Erwin Stoff, who was kind enough to meet me before and after the flick, and talk a little bit. So Erwin, personal question, does, I don’t know if movies change producers. I really have no idea what your life is like, or if it’s just another movie. But does this movie change you in any way? ES: Absolutely. The experience of, first of all, the experience of every movie changes you, like every life experience changes you. Getting, first of all, to meet and work with the real guys that, I mean, I should say, the real heroes of Benghazi, the guys that were completely committed to giving their lives to save 34 fellow Americans, that has to change you. So that was one thing. The other thing that changed me was for three months, I was in the company of all of these former SEALs. That’s who I was with all day long, and that, of course, also changes you. HH: That’s what I want to get to. What is your impression of this select group of special operators? And they’re all retired now, but what do you, what did you learn from that experience? ES: They’re a breed unto themselves. I found them to be incredibly thoughtful guys. I found them to be not boastful. I found them to be incredibly intelligence, and very, very clear in their view of life, very clear in what they are willing to give of themselves. I mean, for lack of better comparison, you know, it is like meeting John Wayne. I mean, these guys are just extraordinary, extraordinary guys. But they’re real. HH: Given how many movies you have made, and how much history is in your movies, do you think that the nature or the soul of a warrior has changed much in 2,500 years of recorded human history? Are they the same people? ES: I don’t. I don’t. I think that they are the same people. HH: I agree with that, but that’s from reading history, not making movies or hanging out with them. Now let me ask you about Toby Stephens, who played Glen Dougherty, and James Dale, who played Ty Woods. They play two of the casualties. It’s a special obligation. John Krasinski plays a pseudo-anonymous Jack Silva, that’s not his real name, and you make sure that people don’t know that. What did they say about the obligation of these roles to you? ES: Well, again, they felt, I mean, there’s a real onus and a real sense of responsibility when you’re playing somebody who’s no longer with us, who as I said, made the ultimate sacrifice. And they both did copious amounts of research. They spoke to relatives, friends, etc. And the special operator community and the SEAL community per se is so, is such a small, tight community, that for instance, the guy that John Krasinski played was a student of the guy that James Badge Dale played. So the pseudonym character Jack was taught in the SEALs by Tyrone Woods. HH: Yeah, see, and they all know their class when they go through BUDS. They know all that stuff. ES: Yes. HH: And it’s so obvious that you had folks doing your homework with you. Let me close by asking you about the impression that everyone had that I have seen, and it’s not a political movie. It’s not a political statement. But they all have the same question, which is where was the cavalry? Where were the reinforcements? They didn’t know how long this was going to go on. In fact, the guys on the roof don’t know how long it’s going to go on. And it goes on and on and on. It’s a long 13 hours. Is that a ubiquitous reaction, Erwin? ES: Yes. And to be perfectly honest, I don’t know. That is not a question that the movie tackles. What is clear in the movie is that folks all over the world were watching this from an unarmed drone that was flying overhead, but as far as, you know, I mean, reasons have been given why no one came from outside, other than the small team that came in from Tripoli that night. But the honest to God answer is I don’t know. HH: Nobody knows. In fact, General Petraeus was in closed session last week for two and a half hours. ES: Yes. HH: And he has to come back on this question, because the members of the Benghazi Committee are my friends. And they can’t tell me what goes on inside of the closed session, but they can tell me that they still don’t know the answer to that question. So the movie is not political, because it can’t answer a question that hasn’t been answered, yet. ES: Correct. And what we try to do is give you the sense of what that was like on the ground. HH: There is one character who will not be happy with this movie, how they are played and portrayed, and it’s Station Chief. People can see it when it comes down. Have you heard from that individual or that community, yet, as to that representation? ES: We have not, nor do I expect to. HH: Yeah. ES: And look, even he, we try to portray him in a way that I think, that I think, at least, is fair. When, there are two issues that are conflated. One is the issue that no help came from the outside. The other issue is that he gave an order, again, according to our five guys, he was very clear in the order that he gave to not leave the annex to go to the compound. But he gives it for a reason. HH: Oh, yeah. ES: The reason is if they leave the annex, they leave the annex unguarded. If they get into trouble, then there is nobody to go rescue them. HH: It is so fair, and I think the Agency personnel will also applaud this movie, because it salutes their heroism as well as the warrior heroism, and how they operate in the middle of very dangerous circumstances. It’s just a relentlessly fair movie, so my hat is off to you, Erwin. ES: Thank you. HH: I don’t think anyone could have walked this tightrope, and I believe that the consensus from the huge crowds that will see it, will be the same. Congratulations, and good luck on this weekend of the opening of 13 Hours. I appreciate you taking the time. End of interview. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
The audio: 01-15hhs-rubio The transcript: HH: From Hillsdale College’s Kirby Center in Washington, D.C., where I am for Meet The Press on Sunday, I’ll also be on with Don Lemon tonight. I’m pleased to begin the day after the debate with one of the two people I think won the debate, and I wrote that in CNN opinion this morning, Senator Marco Rubio. Senator Rubio, welcome back to the Hugh Hewitt Show, congratulations on a great debate performance last night. MR: Thank you, Hugh, and I’m glad you’re at Hillsdale. It’s a great school and a great campus there in D.C. We love doing events there with them. HH: It is a terrific place to broadcast from as well. Now before I go and congratulate you on the Debate, I have to say I’m sorry about your Miami Dolphins coming in second in the race for Hue Jackson. MR: (laughing) They got their guy. They got who they wanted. HH: Okay, I’m just saying, I’m looking at the draft list here, and it says you basically need everything. All we need is Jared Goff. But nevertheless, let’s go to your biggest moment last night. It came early. One came early, one came late. This is the first big moment for Marco Rubio last night, where you talk about Hillary Clinton, cut number one, please. MR: Well, I would go, first of all, one step further in this description of Hillary Clinton. She wouldn’t just be a disaster. Hillary Clinton is disqualified from being commander-in-chief of the United States. (applause) Someone who cannot handle intelligence information appropriately cannot be commander-in-chief. And someone who lies to the families of the victims in Benghazi can never be president of the United States (laughing). HH: Now Senator Rubio, that sent the meters off the chart, and I think that resonates with everyone. Do you believe she violated 18 USC 1924 or other statutes concerning the handling of sensitive intelligence information? MR: I think that if it is indeed proven that she deliberately asked her staff to delete the labels of intelligence information on there, then she absolutely is in violation of federal law and should be held accountable for it. Let me say on the first part about the Benghazi issue, that’s indisputable. She knew the facts. She was emailing people about the facts, including family members and foreign leaders, and yet she had the faith to go meet with the families, the victims, families of these victims in Benghazi, and tell them this was a spontaneous uprising that caused their death. How can you do that? I don’t understand how you can do that and still think you can be commander-in-chief. HH: Have you had a chance, yet, to see the movie 13 Hours, which opens tonight? MR: No, I have not. But I mean, I know Michael Bay, who’s a producer and the director of the movie, and I know about the project, but I haven’t had a chance to see it. But I’m trying to figure out a way to see it here in the next week or so. We’re on the road a lot, but we’re trying to figure out a way to see it. HH: I think it’s going to profoundly impact public opinion. Do you have confidence in the Federal Bureau of Investigations and the Department of Justice, Senator Rubio, to bring charges that should be brought against Mrs. Clinton? Or is it too corrupt? MR: I have confidence in the FBI. I think the FBI are people of great integrity, and I think they are going to do their investigation, and they’re going to present the evidence to the Department of Justice. I do not have confidence that the current attorney general will do the right thing. I do know that I am going to appoint someone when I am president, an attorney general, that’s going to enforce the law, and that no one will be above the law. And not just Hillary Clinton, but whoever, you know, those responsible for Fast and Furious will also be brought to justice. And again, I have confidence in the FBI’s investigation. I do not have confidence that the current Justice Department leadership will do the right thing. HH: That raises the stakes, however, for those who are currently in the government if they hear a Senator Rubio saying as President Rubio, no investigation will be closed, it won’t be Ollie Ollie In Free. You’re going to go back and look for the lawbreakers? MR: Yeah, people will be held to account. For example, Fast and Furious, someone did something terribly wrong, maybe even criminal. People lost their lives there, and the covering up and the impeding of information, and the constant claiming of executive privilege to avoid the truth coming out, all of that will end. The truth will come out, and the people who have committed crimes are going to be held accountable. And if it were short of a crime but something else, they’re going to be fired on Fast and Furious. And on the issue that you’re talking about with classified information and others, if there was a crime committed, people will be prosecuted. HH: Let me go back to Benghazi. Have you got any idea, yet, why the cavalry never arrived? That is the question that haunts at the end of the movie. MR: You know, again, I mean, they claim, you’ve got conflicting reports here. You’ve got people saying we were ready to go, and we were told not to deploy. Others are saying we weren’t, you know, it gets down to semantics. Basically, these people were ready to go, and they were told, but they were never ordered to go. That is not in dispute. They were never ordered to go. Now you’ve got people like Panetta and others saying well, no one stopped them from going. Well, that’s not the question. The question is not whether somebody stopped them from going. The question is why didn’t someone order them to go when you had personnel in danger? And there’s only two outcomes. Either number one, we didn’t have a force ready to protect them and go save these people, which is incompetence, or number two, we did have one, but they were never ordered to do it, which in my mind is gross incompetence, not ordering them to move in and save these people’s lives. HH: Senator Rubio, at the last debate in which I participated, I asked you a question about the nuclear triad, and you killed it. I want to go back to that for a moment and broaden it out. And at the March 10th debate when I’m back, you can expect more of the same, because I care about Defense. Do you think we have enough soldiers, sailors, airmen and Marines, particular emphasis on Marines? And do you think we have enough ships or even a plan to get to the number that we need? MR: No, we do not, and I’ve said that repeatedly. We’re about to have the oldest Navy in a hundred years, the smallest Navy in a hundred years, I should say. And so I’ve heard some in the Navy argue well, we don’t need that many ships, our ships are very technologically capable, which is true. They are. But they still can’t be in two places at once. So for example, there are months at a time where we do not have a carrier group in a specific region, which is inexplicable given the fact that China’s growing increasingly aggressive in that region, as an example. So you talk about Marines. Absolutely, the Marine force is too small. The Army’s about to be the smallest it’s been since the end of the Second World War. And the Air Force is the oldest and the smallest we’ve ever had very soon. This is just inexplicable and unacceptable in an era where we face multiple global threats all working at the same time against our interests here and around the world. HH: Now there is a new study out by retired Navy Captain Jerry Hendricks, who works over at the Center For New American Security. He’s a very centrist guy, that says, it’s titled Retreat Beyond Range. Maybe we’re past the era of carriers. Maybe they’re too vulnerable to long range missiles either from the PRC or from emerging threats. What do you think about that argument, Senator Rubio? MR: I don’t believe that. First of all, I think carriers will never be obsolete. I mean, they’re important in terms of being able to quickly project air power anywhere in the world. They’re a critical part of our ability to forward project power. In addition, they’re not just about warfare. They also serve a valuable role in terms of symbolically, in terms of American leadership, and in a humanitarian crisis. It’s carrier groups that respond, whether it’s what happened in Haiti or the nuclear accident that happened in Japan. So they serve a very important and valuable role. Otherwise, why would China be building a second one now? The second thing I would say is, about that, and the importance of carriers, is we need to be able to protect them from these asymmetrical threats. The answer is not to stop building them. The answer is to develop the protections necessary to prevent them from being struck by an asymmetrical threat like a surface-fired anti-ship missile that the Chinese are developing. We need to be able to defeat those systems. And we need to invest more in that technology to stay ahead of the curve. HH: Back on the Marines, in 2010, and I’m sure you saw this during your service in the Senate, the USMC said they need 186,800 Marines. They’re below that, and they’re falling. And they came to the conclusion that women ought not to be in close quarters combat, and they’ve been overruled. What do you make of both decisions? Will both decisions be on the table for review under President Rubio? MR: Well, anything is always reviewed. I mean, you want to make sure that things are appropriate. On the women in combat role, look, I personally believe, I always defer to commanders on important issues such as this, but I’ve talked to many about it. And I think ultimately, what I’ve settled on based on the input I’ve had, is if someone is physically capable of doing the job, then I don’t, their gender should not be relevant to that decision. They should be able to do the job. But they’ve got, what you can’t do is lower standards in order to meet these sort of political aims. That, we cannot do. And there are women that are physically capable of doing this. In fact, many are doing it now. It’s not defined as combat role, but in fact, they are in those roles. So again, I give great deference to the military commanders. There’s some difference of opinion on different roles. But I’d just say if you are physically capable of doing it, then I am open to that happening. As far as the number of Marines, the Marines are the first force we’re always going to send in when there’s an emerging situation anywhere in the world. And the problem that we have is if you don’t have a sufficient number, what you are doing now is placing tremendous strain on our current Marines. You’re now going to see longer deployments, more redeployments. You’re just putting more strain on them and their families in terms of being able to rotate them back home and send them back out again. The less people you have, the more you need to rely on reservists, on National Guard, for example, and the Army. Again, I think that’s why having a sufficient number is so critical. The Marines play multiple roles, by the way. They don’t just provide combat forces. They provide embassy security around the world. And they’re the first line of defense. We always send them in first when there’s something that happens quickly. And so we need to have sufficient numbers to be able to do that on multiple fronts. HH: Last question on Defense, it goes to combatant commanders. Generals McChrystal, Petraeus, and Mattis were the best war fighters we’ve had in a generation. They’re all on the bench. Would a Senator Rubio becoming President Rubio reconsider whether or not these men ought to be back on active duty? MR: Yeah, and I’m not sure they want to as this point. I mean, they’ve all moved on to different stages in their lives, but I certainly think that they can still serve in a public role, if that’s what they desire to do. I also believe we have young people coming up the ranks that are of equal caliber, and they would tell you that. And I think you always want to look to that next generation. Here’s the thing that we’re blessed with, is despite some of the flaws that we have in many areas of our government, the one thing I can tell you is that the people in this country graduating from West Point, from Annapolis, from the Air Force Academy, are among, are the cream of the cream of the crop. I interview every year the nominees. We review the applications every year, the nominees that are going to these academies, and the people that aren’t making it are extraordinary, so you can just imagine the people that are getting in there. We are really blessed to have such a great generation of young people serving us in those roles. And that’s been happening for a long time. So we’ve got some really talented people in the military who are ready to assume those roles, and we’d have to make sure that we find them and elevate them. HH: Let me turn to your second home run moment last night. Here is the cut where you went after your colleague in the Senate, Ted Cruz: MR: Senator Cruz, you used to say you supported doubling the number of green cards. Now you say that you’re against it. You used to support a 500% increase in the number of guest workers. Now you say that you’re against it. You used to support legalizing people that were here illegally. Now you say you’re against it. You used to say that you were in favor of birthright citizenship. Now you say that you are against it. And by the way, it’s not just on immigration. You used to support TPA. Now you say you’re against it. I saw you on the Senate floor flip your vote on crop insurance, because they told you it would help you in Iowa. And last week, we all saw you flip your vote on ethanol in Iowa for the same reason. TC: I appreciate you dumping your oppo research folder on the debate stage. MR: No, it’s your record. HH: It’s your record. This is widely considered a decisive moment in the debate, Senator Rubio. Did you hold it back to the end? Were you counting on a crescendo? MR: No, if you recall what happened there, I had been asked a question. I answered it, and then Ted jumped in and attacked. And so I responded. And what I responded is because, it’s not, I like Ted Cruz. He’s my friend, and we’ll be friends after this campaign. But he does campaign with a message that he is the only consistent conservative in the race. And to be frank, his record is not one of, on key issues, he has shown consistent political calculation. And I pointed out to those instances, whether it’s flipping his vote on crop insurance on the Senate floor, I watched him do it, whether it’s changing his position on ethanol last week in Iowa for the same reasons, in order to gain support there, where he’s been on immigration. I mean, he used to want to double the number of green cards. Now, he’s against it. And 500% increase in guest workers. Now, he’s against it. He was in favor of legalizing people that are here illegally. Now, he’s against it. On TPA, he wrote an opinion piece with Paul Ryan supporting TPA. He was actually whipping people to vote for TPA. And now, suddenly, he’s flipped positions and he’s against it. So you can’t go around saying you’re the only consistent conservative when your record is far from consistent. It’s more of the record of the someone who is politically calculating. HH: Let me turn to the issue of eligibility. I have a law partner, a former federal judge, former head of organized crime for the Los Angeles U.S. Attorney’s office. His name is the Honorable Stephen Larson. Judge Larson, still practicing before the Supreme Court last month, I called him up yesterday to ask him about this. He said if anyone had standing, and he’d doubt that anyone does, it would be dismissed as a political question, and it is a silly question. Do you agree with him and conclude that Ted Cruz is eligible to be president? MR: Yes, I think that Ted is a natural born citizen, because there’s only two kinds of citizenship – natural born and naturalized. And Ted Cruz was natural born. He was not naturalized. And so he is eligible to run for president, and to me, it’s never been an issue. I’ve never raised it. I’ve, form the very beginning, said I thought it was a non-issue, and I think it’s important we refocus on the issues before our country, the ones that we really should be debating. HH: Now let me ask you, do you believe it is easier to beat Hillary Clinton or Donald Trump? Is it easier to win the nomination or the general election, Marco Rubio? MR: Oh, you know, well, neither will be easy, obviously, but I think our nomination, we have a very talented field. And I think that’s going to make our nominee stronger. I believe I’m going to be our nominee. And I think I’m going to be a stronger candidate because of the competition that this field is providing. And I think that’ll be true of anyone if they’re the nominee. Hillary Clinton will not be easy. She’s going to have a lot of advantages, whether it’s money, or the mainstream media, or the political establishment in this country, and her long history of politics in America. But I do think she will be beat. I know this. I will beat Hillary Clinton. I know she doesn’t want to run against me. I am the candidate with the best ability to unite the Republican Party and conservative movement, attract new people to the conservative movement, and take the right to Hillary Clinton. If I’m our nominee, we will beat her, and she knows that. And that’s why they are constantly attacking me. Last night, as soon as the debate ended, the first person they attacked was me before anybody else, because they don’t want to run against me. But I can’t wait to run against her. HH: Three last political questions. You’ll bring Florida along with a nomination if you’re the nominee of the Republicans. But we also need Virginia, Ohio and Colorado, and the latter is the hardest, 4 ½%. Dope cuts against us there, but guns work for us. How do you win Colorado, Marco Rubio? MR: Well, we’re not in a general election stage, yet, in terms of strategy. I can tell you I think the message works everywhere that we have, and that is that Barack Obama is trying to redefine and change America, and we want to reembrace the principles that made us great, and apply them to the challenges before us. On the issue of the 2nd Amendment, there’s a reason why the Democrats talk about it the way they do. They understand that a majority of Americans support the 2nd Amendment, support the right of all Americans to defend themselves and their family. And a growing number of Americans realize now that if ISIS comes to our life, in our neighborhoods, or we are confronted by a terrorist attack, our right to bear arms is our last line of defense. When I am president, we are defending the 2nd Amendment, not undermining it. HH: Penultimate question, what did you make of Nikki Haley’s response? MR: I thought it was fine. I know, look, I like Nikki. I was proud of her. I thought she did a really good job. I know after the fact, people always go out and make all this noise about it, and you can parse words all you want about it. But I thought she did a good job, and I thought it was a good contrast to the White House’s message. She talked about what real unity looks like, not what the President did, it’s me. I was sitting there at the State of the Union, and it was just ironic that a president that has deliberately divided us and pitted us against each other for six years, seven years, now is going to his last State of the Union pleading for civility and unity after all he’d done for seven years to pit Americans against each other. When I’m president, that will change. I will never pit Americans against each other, and I will ascribe to a politics that will lift everybody up without tearing anyone down. HH: Last question, before I got on the plane today, I was handed a book, Pope Francis has a new book out on mercy, and about being open to the poor. Can the GOP effectively communicate with the people who are poorest in this country, and for whom the Pope speaks often as the dispossessed? MR: Absolutely, and we should, because the fact that someone is poor means that something is impeding them from accessing the promise of free enterprise, whether it’s the lack of skills that they need or some other issue in their life. And that’s why I want our anti-poverty program to cure poverty, not simply treat the pain of poverty. When I am president, we’re going to take our federal anti-poverty programs, we’re going to bloc grant them to the states, and we’re going to allow states and local communities to design innovative programs that cure poverty, not simply treat its symptoms. HH: Marco Rubio, a great pleasure, congratulations on a great debate last night, and we’ll talk to you again before the Iowa Caucuses. Thank you, Senator. MR: Thank you. End of interview. ]]>
(Review Source)
Hugh Hewitt
(”13 Hours: The Secret Soldiers of Benghazi” is briefly mentioned in this.)
Congressman Jason Chaffetz (a supporter of Marco Rubio in the GOP contest) is Chair of the House Oversight & Government Reform Committee joined me and we spent a lot of time discussing the facts behind “13 Hours,” and, as a reminder Chaffetz was the first member of Congress to reach Benghazi in the weeks after the attacks: Audio: 01-21hhs-chaffetz Transcript: HH: Joined now by Congressman Jason Chaffetz. He is, of course, the chairman of the House Government Affairs and Oversight Committee. I just got, just hung up the phone with Chris Christie, Congressman Chaffetz, and obviously he’s in New Hampshire campaigning. He may have to go back to Jersey because of the storm. Are you trapped in D.C. by what we would call a little bit of snow in Ashtabula, Ohio, or Warren, Ohio? Are you trapped there? JC: No, I’m in the blazing sun of Nevada out here, out trying to help Marco Rubio. So I’m basking in the glory of the sun of Nevada. HH: So you got the heck out of Dodge before the big storm arrived. Very smart on your part. The, it’s interesting. I didn’t know you were a Rubio endorsement. When did that endorsement happen? JC: You know, I’ve known Marco for about five years now, just love the guy. I did it a couple of weeks ago. I’ve been traveling with him in New Hampshire and South Carolina, and today, I’m in Nevada for him. HH: All right, so I’ll come back and talk about that, but you went to the House Leadership Retreat with the Senate, I assume. What is the sense within the House Caucus about what’s happening to the party as a result of this fight? JC: It’s totally different atmosphere. Paul Ryan is much more energetic. He’s got new, fresh, creative thinking. I think he understands the commitments we made to the American people, and we’ve got to live up to those. And with all due respect with Speaker Boehner, that just wasn’t happening. And so you know, we’ve made the change midstream, and there’s consequently a lot of optimism. HH: But in terms of the Republican presidential battle tearing the party apart and bricks flying through every window, does that, did that flow over into the retreat as a source of some concern, at least? JC: No, look, hey, we’re the party of the big tent, and we ought to be discussing policy. I don’t want to get into the politics of personal destruction. I want to be able to talk about policy and not be afraid to have those discussions, unlike the Democrats, who just, you know, line up behind their leader and do whatever the heck she says. HH: Now Chris Christie just called Marco Rubio a hypocrite for attacking, for claiming he never attacks when in fact he does attack, and complaining about attacks when he is in fact attacking. You know, this is kind of 101 in Politics for me, but what do you make of the Governor’s charge about the Senator? JC: Oh, come on. Look, let’s debate issues. And there are substantive issue differences, everything from the 2nd Amendment to Planned Parenthood to others that differentiate the candidates. But either one of them, any one of the ones on the Republican side would be better than Hillary Clinton. My number one goal is beating Hillary Clinton. That’s the whole reason I support Marco. I’ve known him, I’ve had a chance to spend a little bit of time with Chris Christie. I think he’s a good person. I don’t have anything disparaging to say about him. I just think that Marco matches up better against Hillary and would be a better president. HH: Now Congressman Chaffetz, have you seen 13 Hours, yet? JC: Yes, I have. HH: What did you make of the movie? JC: Loved the movie. I wish every American would see that. You know, I’ve been to Libya twice. I was right in the thick of the Benghazi when nobody was talking about Benghazi. There’s no way Hillary Clinton should even be a candidate for president if you go watch that. You know, there’s some shocking things. These are true American heroes, and the reality is we had proximity and capability, and we did not go in to save those people. And Hillary Clinton was part of that decision making tree. HH: Now, oh pause there, because that is still the open question. I always press your colleague, Mike Pompeo, and he never tells me anything, because the investigation is still underway, and a lot of the questioning has been under oath and under seal. But the key question is were there assets, and you just said we had proximity and capability, which says in your mind, in the mind of Jason Chaffetz, who knows the most about this of anyone who can talk about it, and you’re not on the Select Committee, why do you think we had proximity and capability? JC: Because days after the attack, I was the first member of Congress to get my butt on a plane. I went with General Ham to Stuttgart. I flew with him in his plane into Tripoli. I met with the people that were on the ground. I spent time with General Ham, who was the four star general in charge. He was there with the President when they made that decision. And he was unequivocal in telling me that they had capability, proximity, and they were not ordered to go in. And if you look at October 26th of 2012, the first comments publicly done by Secretary Panetta, he said the reason he didn’t go in is they didn’t have enough intelligence. He said that there was a ship off the coast. He said that they could have done it, but you go back and read that transcript, which I posted on my Facebook page and others, they had that. They said it at the time. Now, they’re changing their story. HH: Now General Petraeus, then director of the CIA, was just questioned by the Select Committee last week. I think he’s coming back. He was two and a half hours. That tells me a lot, that he’s got to come back, that this is the key question, and after you watch 13 Hours, isn’t that the key question that you come away with? Where was the cavalry? JC: Look, you could have gone from Salt Lake, flown to Dulles Airport, changed planes, flown to Paris, and then go into Tripoli faster than our United States military responded? I mean, the movie is very accurate. When they finally got in the daylight, after dawn, into Benghazi, there was an oil tycoon who provided an airplane. The second plane that showed up was a Libyan military. It was not the United States military. We have assets in NATO and NATO allies that are less than an hour away, and that attack went on for 13 hours, and they still didn’t send those people. In fact, one of the things that happened after the movie is that the movie didn’t have a chance to show, is when those planes took off, they flew to Tripoli. What a bunch of idiots. We’ve got wounded people, people like David Ubben, who almost died and bled out, they could have flown to Italy which is just about as far away and been in a NATO facility. Instead, they flew into Tripoli where we didn’t have the medical assets. HH: Has the question been asked and answered why fighter pilots were not dispatched to fly low over the terrorists, because I am told by former, by fighter pilots who have done this, that they have gone low, even without armament, over bad guys in order to scare them. And clearly, we could have sent a fighter pilot or two from Aviano, couldn’t we? JC: We had assets and NATO allies that were less than an hour away. You fly an F-16 or a Tornado 200 feet off the deck and drop a sonic boom, you’re going to get their attention. You’re going to scatter people. And you’re going to let them know that the United States is there. But they didn’t do that, and that was a conscious decision. You’re telling me with all the assets we have, the $600 billion dollars a year, and in 12 hours, we can’t get a plane over Northern Africa? Bull crap. I don’t buy it. They’re lying about that, and that’s why Trey Gowdy and what they’re doing is the right thing, and why I feel so passionately about it. HH: Now when we come back from break, we have a three minute segment. I want to find out where you think that decision was made. Don’t go anywhere, America. I’m talking with Congressman Jason Chaffetz, who is out campaigning for Marco Rubio in the state of Nevada. He is a Rubio surrogate, but he is also intimately familiar with the details of Benghazi. I want to ask him about the server when we come back. Don’t go anywhere, America. — – – – — – HH: It’s great to have you back, Congressman Chaffetz, of course, from Utah, is chairman of the House Oversight Committee on Governmental Affairs. Congressman, Mr. Chairman, when you talk about Hillary Clinton, the server is at the center of all this. And the Inspector General of the intelligence community sent a scathing letter to the Senate Foreign Affairs and Intelligence Committees this week saying it was chock full of dozens of SAP, and I would call it sensitive compartmented information from my days. What does that tell you about her culpability on the intelligence acts that prohibit the careless storage of classified material? JC: Look, assuming that’s true, she put American lives at risk for her own personal political convenience. She purposefully hid records that under the Federal Records Act you’re not allowed to do to set up this convenient private server so that nobody would have access to this information. She hid that for years so that any FOIA requests, a Freedom Of Information Act request, request from Congress, or documentation, would not be provided. And I think they’re trying to run out the clock, delay it as long as they can, and play hide the documents. And she should be held accountable, as was General Petraeus, as others, because if anybody else in the government had done it, they’d probably be in jail about now. HH: So do you expect her to be indicted? JC: Based on the facts that I’ve been reading about in the media, assuming they’re true, I believe in Mr. Comey as the FBI director is going to do a serious and thorough job, but assuming those things, I don’t, I would conclude that they would have to. I don’t know how you come to any other conclusion. If there’s another answer, the American people need to sort it out sooner rather than later. And they need to do that. HH: All right, and last question goes back to what we were talking about in the last segment about the proximity and capability. General Ham told you he was never ordered to provide relief. Where do you, that’s not a stand-down order. That’s not, that’s a different sort of order. That’s a non-order. Where does that come from? And I know you don’t know, Jason Chaffetz, but you must have a theory of the case. What do you think happened? JC: Look, from my viewpoint, my own personal viewpoint, you had General Ham and the Secretary of Defense meet with the President of the United States, and that is the food chain, right? You go from the president to the Secretary of Defense to General Ham, who’s in charge of Africom, and had combat and command responsibilities in trying to move assets. I would think most instructive are Secretary Panetta’s first public comments on October 26th. I also believe that Hillary Clinton was not necessarily engaged. Keep in mind the night of the attack, the Secretary of State and the Secretary of Defense never even spoke. The Secretary of State, who’s in the same town as the President, supposedly, they never even met. And you had a fast team coming out of Europe that was going to protect the embassy in Tripoli. What did they do? They were ordered to get out of their military uniform and put on civilian clothes, because the State Department, Hillary Clinton, was concerned. So there’s a lot of culpability there, and you’ve got to hold Panetta, Secretary Clinton and the President responsible for that. They are the top of the food chain. HH: Jason Chaffetz, always a pleasure, Congressman, talk to you again soon. End of interview. ]]>
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Sonny Bunch
If you’re flummoxed by the current political landscape — one that sees self-proclaimed socialist Bernie Sanders and Spy-proclaimed short-fingered vulgarian Donald Trump at or near the top of polls in both of the first two primary and caucus states — you should check out a couple of movies currently in multiplexes: “The Big Short” and...
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