NEIL CAVUTO, HOST OF “YOUR WORLD”: In the meantime, it did not take long to turn the riots into a class warfare fight, a left-leaning British lawmaker blaming the violence on rich bankers, and others saying conservative policies are the culprit.
Nile Gardiner is not surprised at all -- Nile director of the Margaret Thatcher Center for Freedom at the Heritage Foundation.
Is it what it’s purported to be or what Amy just said it was?
NILE GARDINER, DIRECTOR OF MARGARET THATCHER CENTER FOR FREEDOM: Neil, I mean, clearly, we have large numbers of mindless thugs and hooligans on the streets of London and several other British cities causing a huge amount of damage.
I mean, these are absolute barbarians, frankly, carrying out this looting on the streets of British cities tonight. This has nothing at all to do with poverty, austerity measures, government cuts. This has everything to do with lawlessness, with criminal behavior.
And I hope now that the police are going to crack down very severely upon these criminals. There are even calls now for the army to be brought on to the streets of London if the riots continue. Without a doubt, I think we’re going to see the introduction of water cannons, potentially even the use of plastic bullets again some of these rioters and looters.
But we cannot allow anarchy to reign on the streets of London and several major British cities. I mean, this is a very, very sad week for -- for Great Britain, where we have seen the forces of disorder and anarchy taking over whole swathes of the capital city of one of the most prosperous, free nations on the face of the Earth.
CAVUTO: But, you know, there are those that will take a look at the European press and try to lump what’s going on in Britain to what has happened in Greece and protests in Italy and in Portugal and in Spain, and by inference then say, well, we got a class struggle going on.
You’re saying that’s way, way, way overdone?
GARDINER: Yes, absolutely. And certainly you have had a number of left-wing politicians and commentators blaming these riots on the conservative government or on Thatcherism.
But at the end of the day, these are acts of mindless criminality conducted in a very wealthy city, London, by individuals who’ve no respect at all for the rule of law, who have no sense of common decency.
And I do think that one of the biggest problems we have faced in London in the last couple of decades or so has been the rise of lawlessness, the rise of social disorder. And it’s vital that the conservative government of Britain to send a very clear message that there will be zero tolerance for these thugs and hooligans, they will be arrested en masse, they will be sentenced, and they will serve long periods in jail.
But we cannot allow in any way this sort of behavior to be excused by the -- by the far left. And let’s face it. I mean, the left is continually trying to find excuses for violent criminal behavior. We are seeing that today in the United Kingdom. We’ve seen it across Europe. We’re even seeing it in the United States as well, where the left has justified acts of sheer anarchy in the past.
CAVUTO: All right, Nile, hopefully, we’ll get beyond this craziness.
But thank you, my friend. Always good seeing you, even under these circumstances.
GARDINER: My pleasure. Thank you.
CAVUTO: Nile Gardiner of the Heritage Foundation.
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