Rush Limbaugh talked about the Hugh Hewitt interview with Donald Trump today on his radio show and basically said that Trump had a fairly decent answer to Hewitt’s questions about the names of the terrorist organizations in the Middle East. And because of that and the fact that both Reagan and Bush had a similar problem and were both elected twice, he really doesn’t think this is going to hurt Trump at all.
Note: There’s a portion near the bottom of the transcript that I didn’t get the audio of and it’s ‘one more theory’ Rush say she has on this. You can read it if you wish. I’ll note where it begins with ***.
Transcript via Rush Limbaugh:
RUSH: Okay, let’s get… First, I think probably what everybody here wants some clarification on — or at least some analysis of or explanation of or discussion of — is Trump and his inability to identify certain names thrown at him on the radio, names of Al-Qaeda leaders, Hamas, Hezbollah, Iranian Quds Force leaders and so forth. It’s real simple here, folks, and I guess I should address this to the Republican establishment and like-minded. If you think this is going to harm Trump with his supporters, it won’t.
It didn’t hurt George W. Bush when he was unable to do the same. It didn’t hurt Ronaldus Magnus when he was unable to do the same thing. But it specifically isn’t gonna hurt Trump’s people because Trump, A, had a fairly decent answer. (summarized) “It doesn’t matter. These guys are all gonna be gone by the time I’m elected.” But, anyway, that’s not the point. I want to get some historical perspective. Let’s start here first off with what Trump said. This was on the Hugh Hewitt show last night. He’s interviewing Trump.
This guy Hewitt, by the way, is one of the CNN moderators. He is the conservative Republican moderator CNN has chosen. He used to be in the Reagan White House. He’s a graduate of Harvard. Solid guy, nice guy. No problem with Hugh Hewitt. He has his own technique, has his own way of doing his program and vetting presidential candidates. He asked the same questions later of Carly Fiorina. She was able to ace them all. So now we got comparisons, by the way.
“You know what? You know what?” they’re saying in the Drive-By Media. “Why, this just like Sarah Palin! Sarah Palin, she didn’t do the homework. She didn’t study. She thought she could wing her way through and look what happened to her.” They’re saying that Trump is on the same path that Sarah Palin was on. Not, of course, noting the profound differences.
Anyway, here’s the question. We have one of two. “At the debate…” Hugh Hewitt was telling Trump, “At the debate, I may bring up Nasrallah being with Hezbollah and al-Julani being with al-Nusra and al-Masri being with Hamas. Do you think if I asked people to talk about those three things and the differences, that that’s a gotcha question?”
TRUMP: Yes, I do. I totally do. I think it’s ridiculous. I’m a delegator. I find great people. I find absolutely great people and I’ll find them in our Armed Services, and I find absolutely great people. When you start throwing around names of people and where they live and — you know, “Give me their address” — I think it’s ridiculous. The names you just mentioned they probably won’t even be there in six months or a year.
HEWITT: So the difference between Hezbollah and Hamas does not matter to you yet, but it will?
TRUMP: It will when it’s appropriate. I will know more about it than you know — and believe me, it won’t take me long. It won’t matter. I will know far more than you know within 24 hours after I get the job.
RUSH: By the way, you might think that Trump is putting Hewitt down. What he’s actually saying is, “I’m gonna have some experts in there. We’ll know everything there is to know about these guys 24/7 after I’m be elected. We’re gonna know everything. We’re gonna know everything we want to know. We’re gonna know everything about who they are because we’re gonna destroy them in the first 24 hours that I’m there. We’re gonna get rid of them.” That’s the unspoken message that the Trump supporters will hear. So let’s go back to November 4 of 1999. This is Boston on the educational staked WHDH TV. Political correspondent Andy Hiller is interviewing former governor of Texas, George Bush.
HILLER: Can you name the president of Chechnya?
BUSH: No. Can you?
HILLER: Can you name the president of Taiwan?
BUSH: Yeah, Lee.
HILLER: Can you name the general who’s —
BUSH: Wait. Is this a 50 questions?
HILLER: No, it’s four questions of four leaders in four hot spots.
BUSH: The new Pakistani general that’s just been elected — not elected. This guy took over office. He appears he’s gonna bring stability to the country, and I think that’s good news for the subcontinent.
HILLER: And you can name him?
BUSH: General… I can’t name the general.
RUSH: Bush got away with it ’cause he called it “the subcontinent.” See, only the insiders in foreign policy know what the hell “the subcontinent” is. Do you know what the subcontinent is, Snerdley? (interruption) You don’t know what it is? (interruption) Are you kidding me? You don’t know what the subcontinent is? This is my point. I remember. I’m gonna get back to Trump here just a second, but when this all happened I remember Condoleezza Rice.
They sent her out for damage control after this and she kept using the term. “The governor was clear in his understanding of the subcontinent and the issues of the subcontinent and what was happening in the subcontinent,” and I’m thinking, “Okay, I know what the subcontinent is, but nobody ever talks about it except in these circles.” This is sort of like foreign policy lingo they’re entitled to use but you aren’t.
Not that you’re not entitled. They use and you don’t. It’s one of those words or ways of referring to a geographical place on the planet that lets you know, “These people are special. They are talking about the subcontinent, and only real insiders do that.” It’s like the way economists talk about their business. They start throwing around these terms that most people don’t know, and it lets you know that they are insiders and you aren’t.
So Bush using the word “subcontinent” overcame all of the other things he wasn’t able to answer because he knew what the subcontinent was; that meant he was schooled and of the right mind-set. (interruption) You still don’t know what the subcontinent is? Do you know…? (interruption) Do you know what sub-Sahara is? What is it? (interruption) Right. Right. Sub-Saharan Africa is what? (interruption) No. No. No. (laughing)
Let me take a break here before.
RUSH: So when you talk about sub-Saharan Africa, most people when they hear the word “sub” (not all but a lot of people) think “substitute.” “Okay sub-Saharan. Substituting what for Africa?” They don’t get it. Rather than thinking of sub as in submarine, as in underneath. So sub-Saharan is about half of the continent, maybe a little bit more. It’s the green part. It’s everything below the Sahara Desert.
The Brits are responsible for this, folks.
The British and their foreign policy diplomats — trying to distinguish themselves and the plebes that make up the rest of the world, don’t you know — created all these terms. The subcontinent is essentially India. You have Europe. It’s just a blob up there. And you have this thing like an udder. It’s sticking down there from the continent, and it’s India. The subcontinent, it’s beneath the continent. So to make themselves out to be really sophisticated, “Yes, of course! India, Pakistan, Bangladesh, Sri Lanka? The subcontinent, don’t you see?” So when Bush started talking about the subcontinent in that answer 2000, I knew it was okay.
And then Condoleezza Rice went out doing damage control, and she kept talking about how (she kept calling him “the governor,” ’cause that’s what he was at the time, governor of Texas), “The governor is clearly versed on the issues ranging foreign ones subcontinent.” She never defined what subcontinent was, never talked about it in the issues. Just kept using the term. So it was all okay. This was even done to Reagan, folks. Reagan was running for president.
He and the other candidates were asked if they knew the names of various obscure heads of state. These questions are never asked of Democrats, by the way. Make note of this: The question that Trump got, Democrats will never get those questions in the normal ebb and flow of things. Hillary will never get them. Clinton will never get ’em. Never did. It’s just… They are questions that are designed to further the narrative that Republicans are just not bright; they’re just not hip.
And when it works on one of them, then every other Republican is gonna start getting the same treatment. For example, if they can expose, say, a Sarah Palin who doesn’t know an answer like this, “A-ha! Let’s start asking the others, too.” So Reagan got questions like this. He was asked to name various obscure heads of state. Reagan’s answer was the best. Reagan said… I’m paraphrasing. He said, “It doesn’t matter if I know their names. They need to know mine,” and that shut it down. Trump saying, “It doesn’t matter. They’re not gonna be there by the time I get inaugurated, and even if they are, in 24 hours I’m gonna know more about these people.
“Because I’m gonna go out and I’m gonna find the wonks, and I’m gonna find the geeks. I’m gonna find the foreign policy experts are gonna tell me all about this. I’m a delegator. I’m gonna tell ’em to deal with it. We’re gonna deal with it once and for all. Hamas, Hezbollah, what do you need to know? They’re terrorist organizations, and they need to be wiped out. That’s all anybody needs to know,” and answers like that are gonna resonate. Trump’s inability to name names or identify certain names? It’s not gonna hurt him with his supporters.
***One more theory on this and we’re gonna keep going after this***
RUSH: Now, one of the names that Donald Trump was given — and he knew who he was. He was not stumped by this — the head honcho, the leader of the Quds forces in Iran. That’s the equivalent of their Delta or Ranger, SEALs, you name it, Special Forces, and this guy is an absolute bad guy. His name is General Qasem Soleimani. He heads the Quds forces.
Obama just lifted all sanctions on Soleimani and the Quds in this Iran deal. Part of the original sanctions prevented Soleimani from traveling and doing nuclear related business with, say, the Russians or anybody else. It was recognized what a viciously, dangerous bad guy he was and the sanctions limited his movement, if they abided by them. Those sanctions now have been lifted, and this guy, Soleimani, is free to travel all over. Obama (paraphrasing), “It’s accidental. We didn’t intend for this to happen,” lifted all sanctions on Soleimani and the Quds in this Iran deal.
Soleimani is also the guy who sent all of the IEDs to Iraq that maimed and killed so many of our troops. Qasem Soleimani. He didn’t personally manufacture them, of course, but he made sure that they got to Iranian allies in Iraq. These roadside IEDs, and positioned elsewhere, were used specifically to kill Americans and Iranians. So let me ask you, which is worse? Not knowing his name off the top of your head, but knowing who he is. Trump knew who he was, or is. But what’s worse here, not knowing the name of this guy off the top of your head or rewarding him with sanctions relief, as the Obama administration has done.
I tell you, folks, there’s even a part of me that is disgusted. I’m not sure if that’s the right term. We have to know the names of these thugs, as though it’s giving them some sort of respect? The only thing we need to know, and if identifying their names helps, is where they are so they can be targets. Every one of these groups, every one of these names, Al Zawahiri, everybody knows that Zawahiri inherited Al-Qaeda from bin Laden. Ayman al-Zawahiri, he’s Egyptian. He’s been running Al-Qaeda for 14 years essentially, even before bin Laden was captured and killed.
To the extent that these guys are known because they become targets, fine and dandy, but I guarantee you, I think the American people are sick and tired of these names. They’re sick and tired of hearing about these names. They’re sick and tired of nothing being done about these names, if you ask me. I would go so far as to say that a majority of the American people want these names out of our lives. The American people want something done about this. We’re not fighting a War on Terror.
I haven’t spoken much about this on this program, because it’s a bit, I think, in the weeds for a lot of people.