‘Assault Weapons’ Ban, Firearms Licensing Did Not Stop Terrorist with AK-47 in Istanbul Airport

AFP/Ozan Kose
AFP/Ozan Kose

Turkey, which recently suffered an attack in the Istanbul airport by a terrorist with an AK-47, has a complete prohibition on private ownership of semiautomatic rifles, firearm licensing requirements, and background checks.

In American leftist lingo, an AK-47, a type of semiautomatic rifle, is an “assault weapon.” AK-47s are completely banned from private possession. That, however, did not keep a terrorist from getting one. And that alone highlights the foolishness of House Speaker Paul Ryan’s (R-Wisc.) pursuit of more gun control following the June 12 Orlando terror attack.

In fact, the gun controls in Turkey are so strict that a terrorist in position of an AK-47 only highlights what we should have already learned from Chicago–namely, that gun control empowers wicked people, while making law-abiding citizens vulnerable.

According to The University of Sydney’s GunPolicy.org, Turkey’s gun controls are “restrictive.” In addition to the semiautomatic rifle (“assault weapon”) ban and firearms licensing, Turkey has background checks that are so invasive an applicant undergoes an examination of his “criminal, mental health, domestic violence, medical and addiction records.” If an applicant passes all aspects but a “likelihood of family violence” is discovered, the license is denied.

Moreover, the licensing requirement to own a firearm is complemented by a licensing requirement to own ammunition–and “authorities” maintain a record of both.

This is what “restrictive” looks like, and one of the three terrorists who struck Istanbul’s airport was carrying an AK-47.

France has “restrictive” controls, as well, yet 12 were shot and killed at Charlie Hebdo headquarters on January 7, 2015, and terrorists shot 130 to death on November 13.

Here’s the lesson: Gun control does not keep bad guys from getting guns. Rather, it keeps law-abiding citizens unarmed.

AWR Hawkins is the Second Amendment columnist for Breitbart News and political analyst for Armed American Radio. Follow him on Twitter: @AWRHawkins. Reach him directly at awrhawkins@breitbart.com.


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