tv The Journal Editorial Report FOX News April 4, 2015 11:00am-11:31am PDT
he easter eggs out and the kids can find them. >> a wonderful, inspirational story to make sure the kids feel connected. >> you heard the father there say how much his daughter wanted to be like everybody else. and now she can. see you tomorrow. this week on "the journal editorial report," president obama hails an historic agreement with iran, but is the framework likely to lead to a nuclear free middle east? and can the administration get israel and congress on board? plus, the furor over indiana's religious freedom law offers a preview of the culture wars going into 2016. are republicans ready for that fight? a brutal massacre in kenya this easter week remind us once again of the grim reality facing christians in africa and the middle east. as president and commander in chief, i have no greater responsibility than the security
of the american people. and i'm convinced that if this framework leads to a final comprehensive deal it will make our country our allies, and our world safer. >> welcome to "the journal editorial report," i'm paul gigot. that was president obama thursday announcing that the united states and its negotiating partners had reached a quote historic understanding with iran. agreeing on the framework of a deal meant to block the islamic republic from developing nuclear weapons in exchange for the lifting of western sanctions. joining me now with a look at the details of the accord and what's left to be accomplished before a final june 30th deadline is "wall street journal" columnist and deputy editor dan henninger and foreign affairs columnist bret stephens. so dan, a lot of details that we're going to talk about. big picture the president said a good deal. you agree? >> no i think it's a weak deal, paul. let look at the big picture. when they began these
negotiations in early 2013, the goal was to stop iran from getting a nuclear weapon. >> still is, the president says. >> well, halfway through, they decided and they claim they saw this coming iran was not going to dismantle its nuclear infrastructure. what we have ended up with is a country that has one year called the breakout period to build a nuclear weapon. so they still remain with the ability to do what they wanted to do from the beginning. this is what's known as a threshold nuclear state and because we have a threshold nuclear state in iran that puts in motion the other dynamics we have been worrying about about proliferation around the middle east, among other countries. >> all right, let's talk about some of the specific weaknesses, holes in this framework agreement. even the president concedes they have a lot of work to do, which is odd considering how really cheering he was about the broader deal. where are the big holes in your view? >> well the biggest hole has to
do with the inspections process. the president trumpeted the additional protocol to the nuclear nonproliferation treaty which is a tougher set of inspections rules. but the deal does not include what you might call any time, anywhere inspections which are the thing that you have to do have any kind of deal is going to be honored. look, the terms of this deal could have been even better at least on paper. but if you can't inspect it, our experience from past episodes of inspection like north korea these types of regimes will cheat and this deal provides iran with ample opportunities to cheat and to rely on the russians especially to cover for them at the u.n. >> there's -- also iran retaining the nuclear infrastructure in reduced form. i mean, the facilities are essentially going to remain there. i guess the one exception is the
plutonium facility, arak will be dismantled. >> it's basically being redone. >> but it will be a research reactor instead of a plutonium reactor. >> for all the pages of detail they listed in the parameters, the sanctions piece is very unclear. the iranians said their negotiators said we expect the sanctions to be lifted when the final agreement is signed. >> immediately. immediately. >> in june. the obama administration has always insisted that that was not going to happen unless iran was in compliance. but once the sanctions begin to break apart in western commercial interests go in there -- >> yeah, the president said that the sanctions will be phased out. i think he's being slippery there. the toughest sanctions those are the ones -- they'll go as the
iranians suggest immediately. >> let's recall, paul, this is still an outline of an agreement details to be worked out presumably by the end of june. with any of these agreements you know, the proper -- the devil is in the details does apply. here the question is what the iranian method of cheating and also the iranian method of negotiation hasn't been to sort of flagrantly flout terms of any agreement. they have basically kind of worked their way out of it. step by step, so no one particular violation is enough to trigger a major international response. and by the way let's remember, we have been here before. i mentioned the additional protocol earlier. the iiranians agreed once before and walked oud a couple of years later. >> that raises the question of what happens if they do cheat or suspected cheating in the summary of the agreement. looks like they have to go to the process in the united nations.
>> to be specified later. >> we know what that means. that sounds like a united nations committee which might as well be, you know, lost in space. it's just -- it's going to take forever to kind of settle these things before anybody could ask to stop iran. >> right. while the world is going through these processes the iranians will be sitting there albeit with somewhat restricted nuclear program, building forward to that bomb. >> and the president i think did achieve what he wanted politically, which is to get the appearance of momentum going forward. he's probably stopped congress from being able to reimpose or strengthen sanctions between now -- >> no question he's bought time with the constituency, which is to say the 16 democrats in the senate who had signed on to a previous version of what we called the kirk menendez bill on -- >> tougher sanctions. >> he'll be able to take the case to them. look, we made enough progress but you have to give me the benefit of the doubt. i suspect that's going to be the process going forward. by the way don't expect june
30th to be the date when we get a final deal. there are a lot of internal politics most of all in iran to take place. >> that's the on thing that will stop it, because i think the president will grab ahold of zarif's leg. >> no doubt. >> i agree with that. when we come back the firestorm over indiana's religious freedom law offers a glimpse into the war that culture wars can play in 2016. is it an easy win for democrats or are republicans ready to respond?
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i've just arrived in atlanta and i can't wait to start telling people how switching to geico could save them hundreds of dollars on car insurance. but first, my luggage. ahh, there it is. uh, excuse me sir? i think you've got the wrong bag. >>sorry, they all look alike, you know? no worries. well, car's here, i can't save people money chatting at the baggage claim all day. geico®. fifteen minutes could save you fifteen percent or more on car insurance. under growing pressure from groups inside and outside the state, lawmakers in indiana moved third to quell the fuhrior over the religious freedom restoration act signed by mike pence unveiling an amendment to ensure the law does not allow businesses to discriminate against gay and lesbian
customers. the firestorm over the bill and a similar one passed in arkansas this week offers a glimpse into the role the so-called culture war is likely to play in the 2016 election. so are republicans ready for that fight? we're back with dan henninger, wall street editorial board member dorothy rabinowitz and assistant editor james freeman joins us. dorothy, indiana and arkansas adjusted their laws this week. in arkansas they hadn't passed it yet, but they adjusted what they had intended to pass. were they right to do that? >> no. i mean, in a word, well, i give grudging sympathy to the pressure they're under. you know what we're up against. we are here, where ferguson and all of the rest of the corruptions of reality started based on a lie and an irrational belief in the martyrdom and victimization of groups. if the republicans were wise and foresight and had some foresight, but having to deal
with these things, they would instead of making speeches about taking back our government and government overreach and government is broken in washington, they would go to what is really broken, what is really broken is the basis of the sanity we have almost always had. we are now in a state of pathological driven bullying sensitivity, driven by the democratic left. which has sought and will undermine the sense of our institutions as just, which leads to the police -- >> so you're saying that this law, the -- with the law that indiana passed was not discriminatory -- >> that's right. >> it was described as being. >> that is exactly right. and in lock step all of these brave lulling herds -- >> but if the law was not as you say, then why did mike pence feel, dan i want to get to you here, why did mike pence feel he
needed to clarify it? >> because they were under this tremendous pressure from businesses and the ncaa and so forth. i mean, they got carpet bombed and the thing is, pushed aside the legal context in which all of this took place. their law was simply a duplicate as 19 other states have done of the religious freedom act of 1993 passed by 97-3 which set up compelling state interest, say to bar discrimination versus an individual who feels substantially burdened by these things and a judge was to decide these sort of things. as to the private interest four appellate courts decided they were covered -- >> under the federal statute. >> under the federal statute but that only applied to federal laws. >> there's never been a case where a court has upheld somebody denying services to a gay couple that i have -- >> because -- >> that i have seen. i have not found --
>> the critics make it sound -- it's happening all over the country. i -- we can't find one where that has happened in court, that -- that's been upheld. >> you have seen the history. it doesn't matter if it's not true. it didn't matter in ferguson. it didn't matter at the scandals of the sport -- the sports scandals where you're accused of racism where truth does not matter. we're in trouble. >> well to your point, when you look at individual cases, there is a situation with the photographer in new mexico served gay customers. didn't refuse to serve anyone. said i'll take portraits that's fine. when asked to participate in the gay wedding ceremony said my religious beliefs preclude me in doing that. that's where the lunch counter analogy breaks down. we are not seeing people being denied service around the country. we are saying people given that it's the first freedom the reason this country was --
>> religious freedom. >> religious freedom. they have a right to say i don't want to participate in a ceremony that i don't believe in. i mean, will they be forced to photograph divorced proceedings? if they don't believe it? >> i want to read you something from richard epstein, the libertarian scholar he told the federalist website, you believe to believe in freedom of association both ways. if somebody doesn't want to serve somebody in a competitive market, let it be. what do you think of that? >> this -- this thought is anathema to real live -- we have living in a taliban like driven world now where utter puritanism prevails. i'm sure prized they didn't put the governor of indiana into the stocks. >> i would predict, james we'll have one of the fights every two weeks. >> sure. >> between now and 2016.
why? because democrats feel they're on the offensive. they can stigmatize republicans who are acting haver defensively here. and they're going to have the fights real or imagined going right up through 2016. >> right. for a lot of people it's a free shot to show how enlightened they are. the ncaa is just thrilled to be asked to comment on a controversy they didn't create. and it's -- and as for cook, he is probably happy to pound -- go through indiana trying to get every last person in the state to agree with him, ignoring the fact he does business with people all around the world who have horrible human rights records, including toward gays. i think that you're going to see more of this. but i do think that mike pence has taken himself out of the presidential conversation. >> thanks. when we come back, islamic terrorist target students for their faith. leaving scores dead in a college in kenya. the fate facing christians in africa and in the middle east.
five masked gunmen from al shabaab terror group stormed a group, separating out christian students before shooting and beheading them. up to 150 were dead by the time the 13-hour siege ended. it is believed to be the worst terror attack on kenyan soil since the bombing in nairobi in 1998 and it is a grim reminder of the fate of christians in africa and the middle east. we are back with columnist and editorial board member mary anastasia o'grady. horrific episode. if you couldn't recite an islamic prayer they killed you. >> yeah it was heart breaking the stories of the survivors are
that they came in around 5:30 in the morning. they went in the dorms, they threw people on the floor. they asked them if they were muslim. if they said yes they told them to recite the muslim creed. there was one individual actually who was interviewed who did that and escaped and he said as he was running out he heard these bloodcurdling screams and they just finished off anybody who didn't pass the test. >> this is becoming a pattern every easter. we see this with attacks seeming to be aimed this week in particular at christian churches. we see it every year in nigeria. boko haram seems to blow up a church on easter. it's a time to target christians. >> right. radical islam wants to eliminate all infidels and the first step is to get rid of all christians because they're the biggest barrier to the total control in these countries. and you know, there's quite a large christian population in
places like nigeria. there's a large catholic population. and obviously, we know that the coptic christians in egypt have been under assault for a very long time now. and are -- the numbers are shrinking considerably. >> this not a recent phenomenon paul. a century ago about 20% of the middle east was christian. towns like bethlehem were christian towns. iraq had a huge christian population and there has just been a massive exodus that predates 9/11, the war on terror, the rise of groups like al shabaab. now it's really accelerated. it's not just the phenomenon with islamist rampages of the kind that we saw, but also discriminatory laws even in muslim states that we consider quite moderate. in malaysia, christians are not allowed to use the term allah. there are systematic, informal discrimination in indonesia. which is held up as a moderate muslim state. >> it is -- >> but only in the context of
sort of the broader middle east. so this is -- this is a much wider process than people -- >> you have some of the statistics of that -- to illustrate bret's point. >> there were well over a million christians in syria. at least 700,000 have fled. iraq had 1.5 million christians. these are not immigrants. these people have lived there since the time of jesus and coexisted there. they're down to 300,000. we have to make clear, this not only real, but symbolic. islamic jihadist, the islamic armies are targeting the groups for extermination. they want to eliminate them and their fight is -- is everybody's fight. including of course israel which is targeted from the beginning. >> for centuries. >> exactly. so what we are going to need is coalitions as these egyptians
now and the saudis are going up against the islamists in yemen. >> mary has there been enough push back in your view on the part of the pope or western leaders against the systemic extermination? >> absolutely not. i think one of the big problems is as you have seen with our president, you know people don't want to draw a line that this has to do with the muslim religion. there are modern moderate muslims, in the majority. but this is a radical muslim movement. and step one really is to call it that. and to define what that entails which means as dan says eliminating other religions so -- that they consider infidels. we are not hearing that language from the leadership in the world. >> well, pope francis has been weaker than his predecessor benedict on the subject.
time now for "hits & misses" of the week. >> this is a miss to the u.s. department of justice. they they declined to prosecute lois lerner on contempt of congress charges. reasonable people can disagree on whether this particular charge could have stuck, but the lack of interest lack of resources that the justice department has put into investigating what is really the political crime of the century is to their eternal discredit. >> all right. mary? >> paul, this is a miss for the dea. as you know the war on drugs
which is 40 years old isn't going so well. maybe this inspector general's report gives us a hint as to why. apparently, a report released last week from the dea says that the dea agents were having sex parties with prostitutes in colombia and they were hired by the drug cartels. ten of the agents said they attended some of the parties and surprisingly enough, the inspector general says the dea did not totally cooperate with the probe. >> okay. >> paul, a big hit for the world's oldest person who died this past week. a lady died at the age of 117 in japan. she said she felt her life actually had been kind of short. and i think it's also worth noting for whatever it's worth her husband died in 1932. so -- >> that may explain it. >> yeah. who knows? >> all right. remember, if you have your own hit or miss, be sure to tweet it
to us. that's it for this week's show. thanks to my panel and to all of you for watching. i'm paul gigot. hope to see you right here next week. a framework is in place to forge a deal that would prevent iran from building a nuclear bomb. and now the politicking for public opinion kicks into high gear as president obama says he's convinced the agreement makes the world a safer place. but critics are skeptical saying it's a path toward a nuclear iran. hello and welcome to america's news headquarters. >> i'm julie banderas. among the skeptics is benjamin netanyahu who wanted it to have a clear recognition of israel's