This is a rush transcript from "Hannity," July 19, 2019. This copy may not be in its final form and may be updated.
SEAN HANNITY, HOST: This is a Fox News alert. Welcome to this live Friday, breaking news edition of “Hannity: Iranian Aggression.” Buckle up.
Breaking just moments ago, the U.S. defense secretary, he just authorized the deployment of military personnel to Saudi Arabia as the U.S. now moves to counter the hostile state, the rogue regime of Iran. U.S. Central Command is increasing surveillance in the Straits of Hormuz tonight.
And now, Sky News reports out of Britain that the United Kingdom is advising ships to stay away from the Straits of Hormuz for an interim period. Major developments, a lot of breaking news. And at this hour, all eyes are on the Middle East. Iran's hyper aggressive actions in the region, around the world have reached a boiling point.
Let me speak tonight, stop for a second with the news. I want to speak directly to the Iranian mullahs. I want to tell you, I have known President Trump for 20 -- well, about 23-plus years. Let me tell you what's not going to happen to help you out tonight and what could happen.
You keep pushing this button, and I can promise you the president is never going to engage in a boots on the ground, long protracted conflict. No. He is going whatever -- if he acts, he is going to act and it's going to be over quickly. That's my prediction.
And you have been warned. It will be over and it will be over quickly. That is my prediction to the Iranian mullahs. So, you'll keep acting the way you're acting, and you will see like we've been right on so many over the years. We will be right on that prediction.
Now, we all know if we're going to be honest tonight, we know the prime minister. We know the mullahs in Iran know it. I know the President Trump knows it that the prime minister of Great Britain is weak.
President Trump is not weak. If he decides to act, it will be over quickly. And let me add one other thing, you will lose. Today, the rogue regime seized two British tankers sailing in international waters. One ship was ultimately released. The other vessel and its crew are now held hostage by Iranian forces.
Just the latest in a string of illegal seizures of tankers passing through the Straits of Hormuz, three in the past six days alone, including a Panamanian-flagged ship from the UAE and a Liberian-flagged ship owned by the U.K. And it's just more hostile action from a malignant government that is just hell-bent on sowing chaos and extremism and terrorism all over the world. We're going to have a lot more in this very important developing story throughout tonight's monologue.
We've got to first take a break. We've got the very latest developments from our West Coast newsroom. Tonight, our own Trace Gallagher.
Trace, a lot happening just in the last 15 minutes.
TRACE GALLAGHER, CORRESPONDENT: Yes, Sean. Those additional military resources you mentioned in Saudi Arabia are on top of numerous bombers, battleships and a carrier strike group already in the Persian Gulf. Of course, this all ramped up today when the British flagged oil tanker Stena Impero which has a crew of 23 was in the Strait of Hormuz headed towards Saudi Arabia when it was approached by Iranian small boats and a helicopter.
Iran's Revolutionary Guard later said the ship was seized for noncompliance with international maritime laws, which is a vague blanket charge that offers no specific violations.
The British ship is now in an Iranian port, but the company that owns the tanker says it has been unable to contact any crew members. And less than an hour after the Stena Impero was seized, the Liberian tanker Mesdar with a crew of 25 was also held by Iranian forces. But now, as you mentioned, we're told the Mesdar has been set free to continue its journey.
Here's British Foreign Secretary Jeremy Hunt. Watch.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
JEREMY HUNT, BRITISH FOREIGN SECRETARY: We will respond in a way that is considerate but robust, and we're absolutely clear if this situation is not resolved quickly, there will be serious consequences.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GALLAGHER: Remember, in recent weeks, U.S. authorities say Iran has attacked various oil tankers, shot down a U.S. drone that was in international airspace, captured several foreign tankers, and yesterday, flew a drone within 1,000 feet of the USS Boxer, the amphibious assault ship. The U.S. Navy brought down the drone by using an electronic jamming device to disable it.
Iranian officials say the drone is not theirs. The Pentagon says it is. And today, President Trump said this about the latest escalation. Look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT: Iran is in big trouble right now. Their economy is crashing. A lot of bad things are happening to them. It's very easy to straighten out or very easy for us to make it a lot worse.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
GALLAGHER: Finally, U.S. Central Command says they have aircraft in the Strait of Hormuz that are monitoring and in contact with U.S. ships operating in that area -- Sean.
HANNITY: All right. Trace Gallagher in our West Coast newsroom tonight, thank you.
We'll have so much more on this urgent situation in the Middle East. My monologue just mere moments away.
But we do have another piece of breaking news to report tonight with our own Catherine Herridge. According to Catherine's sources tonight, Nellie Ohr who was working with Christopher Steele and Fusion GPS is now a top target of a congressional investigation.
Joining us now more with this huge news, Catherine Herridge.
Catherine, you've been great on this story from the get-go. This is a big part of the puzzle tonight.
CATHERINE HERRIDGE, CORRESPONDENT: Well, Sean, the significant developments. Sources tell Fox News that House Republican investigators are seeking the opposition research from Nellie Ohr that focused on the Trump family. Nellie Ohr testified on the hell at the end of last year, she told lawmakers that she was willing to provide the research that focused on then-candidate Donald Trump, his children and the first lady specifically, any foreign travel and foreign contact.
Ordered the opposition research on the Trump family for Fusion GPS, the same firm behind the DNC, Clinton funded dossier. Nellie and her husband, Bruce, who also testified on the Hill last year, go to the heart of the genesis of the FBI Russia probe. Bruce Ohr was demoted at the Justice Department because of his relationship with Fusion GPS. And as you reported broadly, in the fall of 2016, he became the back channel to the FBI for the unverified dossier.
Sources tell Fox News that House Republican investigators want to understand if Nellie Ohr's research got to the FBI or got into the Steele dossier. Fox News reached out to her attorney and asked if she was still willing to provide the research if she needs a subpoena and what accounts for the six-month delay, but there was no immediate comment, Sean.
HANNITY: All right. Catherine Herridge in Colorado tonight, Catherine, thanks for working overtime. We appreciate it.
We get back to our stop story. Tonight, the British, they're working to free its tanker that was seized by Iran in international waters. Of course, this act of aggression is not isolated in anyway, shape, matter or form. Remember, not long ago, Iran shot down a U.S. surveillance drone that was flying in international airspace. And just a couple days ago, an Iranian drone was downed by a U.S. Navy ship after coming perilously close to our vessel after numerous warnings.
Let's not forget, Iran is the world's leading state sponsor of terrorism. At this very moment, radical Islamic militants all over the world are collecting a paycheck from the mullahs of Iran. This hostility cannot and will not stand.
The president was very clear today in his warning. I will repeat what I said. The mullahs in Iran, I promise you, if you push this too far, this is not going to be a long conflict. The president will act decisively and it will be over quickly. I am 100 percent confident.
Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
TRUMP: We're going to be speaking with the U.K., and this only goes to show what I'm saying about Iran. Trouble, nothing but trouble. And remember this, the agreement, the ridiculous agreement made by President Obama expires in a very short period of time. It was a short-term agreement.
When you're dealing in countries, you have to deal in 50 years and 100 years. You don't deal in the short term. It was a ridiculous agreement. It goes to show you, I was right about Iran.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: The president was right about Iran, as is the prime minister of Israel, Benjamin Netanyahu. What happens next is incredibly important for a number of reasons. Two specifically: one, the Straits of Hormuz is the single most important artery for the world's oil supply and its most narrow point, very narrow point. The strait is only 21 miles wide with shipping lanes of two miles in either direction. That is how precise you have to be.
Now, it is bordered to the north by Iran and on the south by the UAE in Oman. That little skinny piece there -- well, that connects all of the oil-rich gulf states to the Indian Ocean. And thankfully, because of the president's pro-energy policies as he mentioned today, we are now less reliant on Middle Eastern oil than at any time in modern history.
Now, let me add this. This has been the Straits of Hormuz, the most strategically important venue for the free-flow of oil at market prices. Of course, oil represents the life blood of every economy.
Since Donald Trump has been president, now for the first time in 75 years, America is energy independent. We're now officially a net exporter of energy. It is less strategically important those straits than ever before.
Now, nearly 20 percent today of the world's oil supply is shipped through those narrow Straits of Hormuz. Any disruption has a district impact on the global oil market and the price you pay at the pump but every economy, the worldwide economy.
And tonight, something much more important at play than the price of oil, and that is the protect of international commerce, because right now, at this hour, the safety, the security of the free world is at stake. The mullahs of Iran have stated clearly, numerous times, numerous occasion, they want to wipe the United States of America off the face of the map. They want to wipe Israel off the face of the map. They chant "death to America, death to Israel".
Their stated main goal is an Islamic caliphate that controls the world. The sick, twisted, convert or die mindset. The Iranian regime has killed hundreds of U.S. soldiers in Iraq and tens of thousands of innocent civilians all over the Middle East.
They are the world's number one state sponsor of radical Islamic terrorism. As we speak, they're fighting numerous proxy wars with armed Islamic militants in multiple countries across the globe. These are the facts. And now, they desperately want a nuclear weapon.
This must and can never happen. Look, it's a simple mathematical formula. A squared plus B squared equals C squared. If you have radical Islamists that believe in a caliphate, convert or die, and you add B squared, weapons of mass destruction, well, that is a clear and present danger to the world which could result in a modern day holocaust. This cannot happen.
Now, Hannity, is this hyperbole? Is this scare tactic? No. I wrote a book called "Deliver Us From Evil".
Let's look at the history of the world in the last century alone, where almost 100 million human beings slaughtered, let's see, in the name of communism, fascism, Nazism, Imperial Japan. We've got the killing fields in Cambodia and Pol Pot and it goes on and on.
All of our lives depend on radical Islamic militants like the mullahs in Iran not getting nuclear weapons. That it's serious for the world.
And tonight, let me be very clear, I want to be very clear, I am not calling for war. I'm not calling for one American boot on the ground in Iran. Frankly, I think that would be a really dumb idea. America doesn't want or need another years and years long bloody war. The president has been more than clear, he will not have that and that is not his stated foreign policy.
And, by the way, I don't want to send any of this country's precious treasure, members of our U.S. forces to fight and die in Iran, especially after the wars of Vietnam, Iraq are politicized. We send kids to fight wars, then the wars were politicized by these idiot politicians in Washington, D.C. that stop thinking about winning the war. We don't fight to win these wars anymore.
And then, in a sick, ugly twisted way, like in the Biden-Obama years, we handcuff our military with insane rules of engagement. Wow, we're going to tell the military what to do from Washington?
One thing has become very, very clear -- Iranian aggression must and it will be stopped eventually. Iran's nuclear ambitions must be extinguished. And they must never be allowed to get a nuclear weapon. It's that simple.
At some point, probably in the near future, the United States will have to use our highly advanced and capable weapons to take out every possible nuclear site inside of Iran. It's that simple. That's why the president's urgency for his military build-up after the decline of the military and the Biden-Obama years was crucial and necessary. Year one, the president spent $718 billion for the next generation of American weaponry, $700 billion in year two.
And tonight, we've got to learn from our mistakes. Politicians can no longer be trusted to win wars. That's why I have been saying for quite a bit of time now, that America must be forward-thinking. We must build the next generation of weaponry offensive and defensive. So, that means we can easily, when necessary, counter hostile regimes and in this case that would be the Iran mullah’s ambitions for nuclear weapons.
Now, future wars with the next generation of weaponry that the brightest minds in the world are creating, future wars can be fought by pushing buttons in an office in Tampa. We have already seen that generation at its very infancy stage. It will become more so sophisticated. We will lead the way and it will also lead to defensive weapons so that people can't do it to us.
In other words, no more old-school boots on the ground, door-to-door fighting by American sons and daughters only to politicize it later and say, never mind. No nation building and hoping that we can change the hearts and minds of evil regimes.
No more bribing dictators. Oh, Bill Clinton, this is a great deal for the American people, while he made a deal Kim Jong-il, Kim Jong-un's father, bribing him.
And, of course, the bribe of -- well, the dumbest thing ever in the history of foreign affairs of the United States, that would be the Biden-Obama Iranian deal where they took $150 billion in cash and other currencies and put it on cargo planes and they dropped it in a tarmac for the mullahs in Iran. Is that not the dumbest thing any politician, president, vice president has ever done?
Here's a fact. Bribing dictators is never going to work. Temporary nuclear deals with zero accountability when you don't have anywhere any time inspections, that's not going to work either. And you better believe the world, our enemies, people that want to see a weakened America, China's watching tonight.
The hostile regime of Russia -- by the way, we can bring Russia and Putin to their knees tomorrow if we just out-produce the energy and get it our Western European ally. It's over for them. Putin, Russia will be on their knees. No more Russian interference.
North Korea is watching tonight. What happens in Iran will have ramifications all over the globe.
So, the question is, how did we get here. Time for a quick history lesson.
2015, Obama and Biden loosened sanctions, a dumb idea, on Iran. And as we just mentioned, they gifted the mullah’s cargo planes of cash. In exchange, the government of Iran promised not to build nukes for, well, ten years.
Of course, the radical Islamic extremist government of Iran continued to fund terrorism with our money all over the world. They continue to chant death to Israel, death to America. They continue to be the number one state sponsor of terrorism around the world and thanks to Biden-Obama, well, they had cash to burn.
And that means this all changed. Donald Trump was sworn in as president. He's not Biden, he's not Obama and I'll be very frank, he knows, the world knows, he's not Theresa May either, who I think, the president knows, even the Iranians know, is weak.
He pulled the United States out of that horrific Iranian nuclear deal, reimposed devastating sanctions. Iran's economy is in a freefall and because of the reimposed sanctions, they're facing years-long recession.
And meanwhile, inflation is spiraling out of control. It's working. The president's policies are working. This year alone, it will likely top 40 percent. Iran is clearly feeling the pain, so this saber-rattling, desperately wanting to disrupt the world's supply of oil to force more money in a new deal on their terms. That is not going to happen under President Trump. I can tell you 100 percent.
The U.S., well, we're going to send -- their nuclear program if they push this, I promise the mullahs of Iran, it will be over and over quickly and your nuclear ambitions will be in the Stone Age. You'll be sent a message that any new deal will be on America's terms.
And obviously, this is incredibly serious situation. Lives are at stake. The free world is at stake. We have to think about the consequences for Israel if we take action.
But, today, the mainstream media, they don't care about any of that. They spend all of their time asking the questions, absurd, the president, absurd questions about Congresswoman Omar and the squad and accused them of racism. I'll show that later in the program.
Journalism is dead and buried. Each day, they just keep digging in, and digging in and digging in. And it's critically important news to cover.
Joining us now, Fox News contributor, retired CIA senior intel officer, 30 years CIA analyst and officer, Dan Hoffman. Fox News military analyst, Colonel David Hunt.
Let's go to you, Colonel, and ask you, OK, do you agree with my assessment? I've known the president 23 years. I probably have interviewed him more than anybody else in media today.
He is committed. There won't be boots on the ground. If he does act, he's going to win. It will be over fast. You agree with me?
COL. DAVID HUNT, MILITARY ANALYST: Not entirely. The problem you've got with your analysis is going after the Iranian nukes. They're buried deep. And the problem will be to get at those bunkers.
We probably have to use nuclear bunker busters which is probably unacceptable.
HANNITY: If the choice is this -- the choices are nuclear armed Iran and having to use very powerful weapons, what will America choose? What must the world choose?
HUNT: Well, very powerful weapons are nuke -- I just said, nuclear bunker busters. We can't contemplate that. This is on a backdrop of 17 years of war, and so, I think what we've got to do is probably try the U.N. but also put more sanctions and we have to strangle Iran more economically. A military strike to go after that won't work.
HANNITY: Daniel Hoffman, so I have talked to numerous people both in the United States, friends of mine in Israel and others. They're convinced that they're talking about, yes, spread around the country, yes, the Colonel Hunt is right. It's deep underground, but about four to five sites.
I have been told by numerous people, militarily, it's tough but more than doable. Your thoughts?
DANIEL HOFFMAN, CONTRIBUTOR: Well, without getting in to the classified nature of this discussion too much, what I'd say is it's a key requirement for the intelligence community and working with our allies among them the Israelis to gather all the intelligence we can about those nuclear sites, determine where those vulnerabilities are and there are vulnerabilities and we've proven that before and determine what options we have if needed to strike them.
Now, as you mentioned, Sean, that's not where we want to go. We would like to talk the off ramp to negotiations. Iran is practicing nuclear brinkmanship, mounting increasingly aggressive attacks against us in the Persian Gulf, enough they think to induce us to eliminate the sanctions which are crippling Iran's economy. But we know that's not going to happen.
HANNITY: Well, the reality is and I do think, Colonel, it's a simple math formula, we lost 100 million souls in the last century alone, and evil exists. They're evil. You couple their evil ideology with these weapons of mass destruction, that's a potential modern day holocaust. You agree with that?
HUNT: Yes, of course. But the problem is, we shouldn't be doing this alone. We need a coalition to help. The Straits of Hormuz analysis is very, very accurate. The problem is the U.S. the only one doing anything.
HANNITY: Colonel, hang on a second.
HUNT: They have to take those boats back.
HANNITY: We have the Brits. I would assume we have -- I know for a fact we have Israel, Jordan, Egypt, the Saudis, the Emirates. They have aligned their way that was unimaginable five years ago. They're all in. They don't want Iranian hegemony and aggression and a nuclear armed Iran. They're all against Iran.
HUNT: I understand except for Israel, Sean. I don't see any of those other countries doing a damn thing. They never have.
It's going to be very difficult. We can do it. But I -- we've got to be very sanguine about shooting missiles at Iran right now.
HANNITY: I've got to run -- no, I'm not rushing into anything. Trust me, I don't want any -- Dan, do you agree there's an unprecedented alliance? Real quick, I've got 10 seconds.
HOFFMAN: Look, the tanker that was seized today had Filipino, Russian, Indian and Latvian sailors on board. We might be looking at those countries too to help us out because they are right now held hostage in Iran.
HANNITY: Except for Russia and a couple others, Iran is isolated. That's the biggest problem. Well, a few weak Western European allies.
Rudy Giuliani next as we continues this live special edition of “Hannity.”
HANNITY: This live breaking news, special edition of “Hannity: Iranian aggression across the globe.”
Today, the president blamed the escalating tensions on Iran in part on the outrageous deal that Biden-Obama made with the rogue state, probably the dumbest foreign policy decision in the history of mankind. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
DONALD TRUMP, PRESIDENT: We're going to be speaking with the U.K. and this only goes to show what I'm saying and Iran. Trouble. Nothing but trouble.
And remember this, the agreement, the ridiculous agreement made by President Obama expires in a very short period of time. It was a short term agreement. It was a ridiculous agreement. It goes to show you I was right about Iran. And let's see what happens.
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Also, today, the president confirmed Senator Rand Paul will be assisting in negotiations with Iran. I don't know if I agree with Rand Paul on this one.
Here with reaction to this dangerous, unfolding situation, President Trump's attorney, former New York City Mayor Rudy Giuliani.
I want to say this delicately because I have sources that I know are sources you know well. And I know you have been told what I have been told. We know exactly which nuclear sites are the most dangerous and we know the plans have been long drawn up to take them out.
And I have been told and I think you have been told, Mr. Mayor, and feel free to go as far as you want to go with this, that it is beyond doable and it will happen if this continues.
RUDY GIULIANI, PRESIDENT TRUMP'S ATTORNEY: Well, I have benefit of having been in Albania for four days in a conference in which we had 50 nations represented, significant numbers of our military, including several general offices, a four-star general, two four-star generals.
And I think the colonel was saying, couldn't we effectively take them out 100 percent? Maybe we would need nuclear weapons for that. But the point is, we could set them back five or ten years. I'd be happy with that.
If we could make it impossible for them to develop nuclear weapons in the next five to 10 years, I'm convinced there'll be regime change there. I mean, it could happen this year or next year.
The other thing that's underestimated - and I saw significant video evidence of this, and I have a couple of interviews I want to show you. The protests in Iran are very significant.
HANNITY: By the way, that's for real.
GIULIANI: --very significant. I saw the video evidence of thousands of people in the street. And it's gone beyond just political protests. Taxi drivers, all the teachers in Iran went on strike, and they are carrying posters "Down with the ayatollah." That's in risk of their lives. "Down with Rouhani." And they're chanting support for Madam Rajavi and the people in the coalition government. And this is fact. You can see it.
You also see signs. I saw several signs of men selling their kidneys for $500 in order to feed their families. So they're in significantly difficult trouble. So if we - if we had to hit them back - and I agree, that should be the last resort. We could do serious damage to all of their nuclear facilities. We take some of them out. We set the others back five or 10 years. We also should immediately take out their naval capacity so they stop screwing around with the Strait of Hormuz. The U.K. should help us with that or they should resign from NATO (ph).
HANNITY: You know Theresa May is weak. The President knows she's weak.
GIULIANI: Well, we may have Boris Johnson.
HANNITY: The Iranians know she's weak. Let's be honest here.
GIULIANI: And when the colonel said before we've to get allies, well, good luck getting France and Germany. I mean--
HANNITY: Forget it.
GIULIANI: --they're doing business with Iran. Now, remember, Iran regime has been in power for 40 years. They have committed hundreds of thousands of crimes against humanity, slaughtering people in the street. I have seen pictures of 120,000 of those people. I have a book at home that has 20,000 of them, all listed and completely authoritative.
I also can tell you that in 1988, they killed 30,000 people in two months. And since Rouhani has been in office, they killed almost twice as many people as Ahmadinejad did. So this man is another murderer, a mass murderer.
These people commit-
HANNITY: Let me ask you this.
GIULIANI: --crimes against humanity, and Europe gives them money.
HANNITY: That's insane.
GIULIANI: And we gave them over a billion dollars. That billion dollars went to kill people. And Obama and Biden should be ashamed of themselves for doing that.
HANNITY: You know the President longer than I know the President. I just want your insight. This is just what--
GIULIANI: Don't push--
HANNITY: --I know. He is serious. This is my take. He's not going to put boots on the ground ever. There will not be a protracted war if Donald Trump is President. Also, you know about this emerging coalition as I do, something that was never possible five years ago. Maybe they don't have the weaponry, but the Saudis, the Egyptians, the Jordanians, (inaudible) with us.
So my question to you is, do you agree with me that the President will stand by his campaign promise, no boots on the ground, but if he strikes, it will be over quickly? Do you agree with that?
GIULIANI: I would not test him. I think that is absolutely right, and I think he's capable of doing that. And at this conference, they were representatives of the Saudi Arabian government.
GIULIANI: And they have joined the coalition. There is an alternative. The MEK is an alternative, the NCRI, group of 50 organizations, is an alternative to the government. And they're willing to go in there and do the tough work. All they need is our support. And if they test him - if they test him, they're going to be - they're going to be very, very - they're going to regret it. He could take them out in significant ways and also set their economy back 10 years. And they can't stand that right now.
HANNITY: It's funny. My prison guard mother used to always say this to me, "You'll rue the day." And I'll, well, rue the day.
GIULIANI: Just like the general right after - just like the admiral rather right after the attack on Pearl Harbor, the Japanese admiral who said we've awakened a sleeping giant--
HANNITY: The sleeping giant. Right. All right.
GIULIANI: What happened to Japan?
HANNITY: And we also know--
GIULIANI: And God forbid--
HANNITY: --Israel is really good at this. The Israeli took out--
GIULIANI: This can be done--
HANNITY: --Iraq in the '80s. The world condemned them. And they took out Syria going under the radar, and nobody even talks about it.
GIULIANI: I base this on three military generals that I spoke to who know this better than I do and I think better than the colonel does.
GIULIANI: We are capable of doing such significant damage to them without nuclear weapons that we could set them back, their nuclear capacity and their economy, 10 years.
HANNITY: We have many similar friends. I know you know what you're talking about because I have--
GIULIANI: I don't know what I'm talking about. The people that I speak to know what they're talking about. And I just had the opportunity to spend four days with them--
GIULIANI: --and see it firsthand.
HANNITY: I know for a fact you're correct. Thank you, Mr. Mayor. Appreciate it.
GIULIANI: Thank you.
HANNITY: Today, mainstream media, they hit a pathetic new low, if that's even possible. So they know that Iran seized British - these tankers, right? They have an opportunity to question the President. I want to ask about The Squad and paper straws, and I'm not making any of this up. Dr. Gorka, Charlie Hurt react next as we continue.
HANNITY: All right. Now the media mob is hitting, if you can believe it, new levels of delusion and an insanity continuing to act in their role as the extension, the arm of the Democratic Party, basically their press offices. Now, just listen to the questions.
Listen to this. President comes out to talk to the media today right after the news breaks that Iran seized these tankers in the Straits of Hormuz. You think they had a lot of questions about that. No. Take a look.
(BEGIN VIDEO CLIP)
UNIDENTIFIED FEMALE: How would you feel if somebody asked the first lady to go back to her country? And what has she said to you about the chants, the tweets, about this entire episode?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you think, Mr. President, that this political feud that you're having with Congresswoman Omar and the rest of those Democrats that you mentioned is a good thing politically for your or do you think it turns people off?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Do you see not agreeing with you as the same thing as hating the country, sir?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Why did you have a falling out with Jeffrey Epstein?
UNIDENTIFIED MALE: Are you in favor of banning plastic straws?
(END VIDEO CLIP)
HANNITY: Plastic straws. Here with reaction, nationally syndicated Salem Radio talk show host, Sebastian Gorka; author of the new book "Still Winning," Washington Times columnist, Fox News contributor, Charlie Hurt. Good to see you both.
SEBASTIAN GORKA, SALEM RADIO'S "AMERICA FIRST" HOST & FORMER DEPUTY ASSISTANT TO THE PRESIDENT: Yes.
HANNITY: --I don't know. I'm just thinking maybe the Iranians seizing tankers on top of their previous hostilities and their saber-rattling might have taken precedence for just a second. No. Your reaction.
GORKA: Precedence over plastic straws, Sean?
GORKA: Look, there's a reason that you and Fox crush it. You get 5 million viewers a night. Poor old Anderson Cooper, maybe he gets 500,000. There's a reason that the fake news--
HANNITY: I think the Cartoon Network does better - somebody said that once.
GORKA: I said that a long time ago--
HANNITY: I know you did. I'm quoting you.
GORKA: --and Anderson Cooper has never - never - he's never forgiven me for that that Yogi Bear reruns in HTV (ph) TV are more popular than Anderson's 360. Look, that's why the fake news label stuck so well because it is a fake news industry. And when the President says - God bless you - when he says they are the enemy of the people, the fake news - not the real news, the fake news - he's absolutely right. They have become - remember the Cold War - you're old enough, Sean.
GORKA: In the Cold War, there was Pravda. This is Pravda. Look, this week, the 50th anniversary of one of the greatest accomplishments of the United States and mankind, and what does The New York Times say, oh, well, the Russians, the Soviets put a woman in space first. Whose side are they on, Sean?
HANNITY: Yes. It's funny. This month of July 2019, Charlie, The New York Times said, Oh, it's likely that the Russian - that the FISA warrant used the dirty Russian dossier as the bulk of information. Like, where have you been for two years after the lies, conspiracy theories and hoaxes? Look, there's a part of me that I think the American people know. They understand. This is fake news, CNN. This is - Washington Times - The Washington Post, New York Times, the networks, fake news CNN, MSDNC, they get it. They know.
CHARLES HURT, CONTRIBUTOR & "STILL WINNING" AUTHOR: Yes.
HANNITY: They don't believe them anymore. I don't think they get their credibility back ever.
HURT: No. I think you're exactly right. And I think that - we've always known that the sort of media - so-called mainstream media leans a little bit left. And they're not so mainstream anymore, by the way. They're increasingly in the ghetto of the left - crazy left over the cliff now more than they are mainstream.
But - we've always known that they sort of lean to the left. But what we have seen over the past two years, two-and-a-half years with this Russia coverage has been the most appalling thing I have ever witnessed.
And I've been - I've worked for newspapers for 25 years. And I've always - I've always understood that they were sort of left-leaning. But we have seen, the dishonesty and the willingness to shrug off - all pretenses of trying to cover somebody fairly in order to persecute a guy has been astonishing.
HURT: And I've lost so much respect for so many people that I once regarded.
HANNITY: Dr. Gorka, I've said it many times. If the President cured cancer, gave every American $10 million, they'd still - every second, minute, hour of every day, they'd still hate him. And even if he adopted their crazy agenda.
HURT: That's true.
GORKA: If he walked out of the oval, down to the Potomac River and started walking down the river on the surface of the water, they would say "he can't swim," Sean.
HANNITY: Touche on his game. Dr. Gorka, Charlie, good to see you.
When we come back, more reaction to Catherine Herridge's huge breaking news about Nellie Ohr tonight. Gregg Jarrett and Sara Carter live. Also Trace Gallagher has an update on these escalating tensions with Iran, as we continue this breaking news special edition of Hannity.
HANNITY: U.K. Foreign Secretary is warning Iran that there will be serious consequences if it does not release a British flagged tanker after two ships seized in the Gulf earlier today. More on this coming up.
First, big developments tonight. And our quest to investigate the investigators and expose the deep state efforts to target the President and his family goes as Catherine Herridge reported tonight, GOP investigators, they are continuing to seek records related to Fusion GPS's paid Nellie Ohr - that's right, the wife of Bruce Ohr, the fourth highest ranking member of the DOJ back in the day, two demotions. And by the way, her work targeting the first lady of the United States, Melania Trump, and other members of the Trump family just when you thought it couldn't get any more disgusting.
And meanwhile, the deep state continues to try to rewrite history like super-patriot Jimmy (ph) Comey published today his own list of questions for former Special Counsel, Mueller, which conveniently excludes questions about his FISA abuse, his spying on the Trump campaign, him using the bought-and-paid-for Hillary dossier that even the FBI concluded 90 percent plus was BS.
Here with reaction, author of the upcoming book "Witch Hunt", Fox News Legal Analyst, Gregg Jarrett; investigative reporter, Fox News contributor, Sara Carter.
Sara, let's go to the news first. I find this pretty fascinating because Jimmy (ph) Comey, well, he's got a lot of questions I want to ask him, and I'd be glad to send them out to him anytime he wants. And I think--
SARA CARTER, CONTRIBUTOR & INDEPENDENT WOMEN'S FORUM VISITING FELLOW: Oh, sure--
HANNITY: --he will be asked at some point.
CARTER: Oh, I certainly hope so. Look, Sean, what's happening here, even with Mueller's testimony with this article that James Comey published today, this is what the military calls the FPF. This is their final protective fire. This is it. This is all they have left.
We already know there was obviously no collusion with Russia and the Trump administration or the Trump campaign. Absolutely out of the question. There's been no collusion. We know there was - there was nothing else that the Trump campaign - as far as obstruction of justice, we know there was no obstruction of justice. But what they're trying to prove here, Sean, right now, is they're laying the groundwork for the Democrats to move forward with any kind of impeachment because now they're in the hot seat.
There is an investigation. This investigation is wide and expansive with the Department of Justice. We have people looking into not only Comey's actions and the FBI's actions, but into everybody else's actions that was associated with the investigation into President Trump. And this is all the ammunition they have left, and that's what they are trying to do. They are just spreading their ammunition out and hoping that something will save them. And it won't.
HANNITY: It's interesting. This has gone on, Gregg, as we know, for such a long period of time. It's so fascinating, the developments. Look at Comey tonight, like, the super-patriot who said he never spied. He signed the FISA warrant for spying, but he never spied. How many FISA warrants did Comey sign?
GREGG JARRETT, LEGAL ANALYST, "WITCH HUNT" AUTHOR: See, he signed three of the four. So - look, I looked at these questions. They are so inane and pointless that they're almost laughable. For example, he wants Mueller to be asked "Isn't it true that the Trump organization explored a construction project in Moscow?" Well, yes, he's a developer. That's not a crime.
Another one was, "Well, isn't it true that the Trump campaign met with a Russian lawyer?" Well, yes, but that's not a crime. My favorite though is, "Isn't it true that a Trump associate heard a rumor that the Russians had Hillary Clinton's e-mails?" Well, yes, but it's not a crime to hear a rumor. It's very tempting to dismiss.
Comey is a guy who just doesn't know anything about the law. He thinks everything is a crime somehow. But it's more than that. He is a malevolent and pernicious, partisan, and the audacity of a guy.
Remember, he's the guy who stole government documents that were privileged, leaked them to the media to trigger the Special Counsel, and now he has the temerity to pen a column of here are the questions that the Special Counsel should be asked. He is insufferable, he is sanctimonious, and I think most people just wish he'd crawl in a dark hole somewhere and go away.
HANNITY: I talked to somebody last night. They made the case in a strong way for Rod Rosenstein. I'm not going to say who. Somebody that knows him. Either one of you - can either one of you make that case?
JARRETT: No. No. That's an impossibility. This is a guy who is conflicted and with impunity, ignored the conflicts of interest. This is a guy who also signed a verified FISA search warrant--
HANNITY: The last one - the third--
JARRETT: --without verified information.
CARTER: Yes. I agree with Gregg here. Remember, he also signed off on a litany of reasons of why Comey should be fired. And when President Trump did that and then Comey leaked - illegally leaked his documents, then called for a Special Counsel, I just don't see it. I don't see any kind of salvage for him.
HANNITY: It'd be a great week next week. I have a lot of questions for Mueller, too. I know how to ask them. I might tell people what I think about that. I'd come up with my own list of questions.
When we come back, Trace Gallagher, another update on Iran seizing this British tanker as we continue tonight, the sly, breaking news edition of Hannity.
HANNITY: All right. Iranian aggression escalating. Trace Gallagher from our West Coast newsroom with the very latest. Trace, big day today and not a good day for Iran, in my view.
TRACE GALLAGHER, CHIEF BREAKING NEWS CORRESPONDENT: Yes. And breaking right now, Sean, amid rising tension with Iran, the Pentagon says additional military resources are now being sent to Saudi Arabia saying, "This movement of forces provides an additional deterrent and ensures our ability to defend our forces and interest in the region from emerging credible threats."
Today the British flagged oil tanker Stena Impero with a crew of 23 was in the Strait of Hormuz when it was seized by Iran's revolutionary guard. Iran says the ship violated maritime laws and is now being held in an Iranian port. But the company that owns the tanker says it has been unable to contact any crewmembers. A Liberian oil tanker was also seized by Iran today but has now been set free.
Today the British Foreign Secretary said, "If the situation is not resolved quickly, there will be serious consequences," and U.S. Central Command says it has aircraft in the Strait of Hormuz that are monitoring and are in contact with U.S. ships operating in the region. Sean.
HANNITY: All right. Trace, thanks for that update. I'll go back to the mullahs in Iran. I'll say it again. Keep pushing the envelope like you are. The President will show some patience, lot of restraint. He acts a lot quickly and decisively. And you'll lose.
Let not your heart be troubled. See you next Monday.
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