The line between fact and fiction is becoming increasingly hard to recognize. No one knows this better than bestselling author Brad Thor, who speaks to people in all areas of America’s intelligence agencies to find out what keeps the people really in the know up at night. But it’s hard to believe that some of the most outrageous story lines from his novels have actually become a reality under the Obama administration. For instance, his book First Commandment depicted the swap of five high value prisoners held in Gitmo. So what’s next? Brad Thor discussed his new book Code of Conduct and much, much more on Thursday's radio show.
MIKE: Welcome. It is the Glenn Beck Program. My name is Mike Broomhead, in for Glenn today. We start things off, the brand-new book. It's called Code of Conduct. I've been told Glenn Beck says it's the greatest thriller ever written. Joining me is Brad Thor, the author of the book. Fourteen in the series. Tell us about the book.
BRAD: Well, Mike, it's good to be with you. Code of Conduct. Glenn says that what I do is faction. Glenn coined this term. Where you don't know where the facts end and the fiction begins.
MIKE: But he says the same things about politicians.
BRAD: He would be correct on that one. But with Code of Conduct, I picked two things that I thought were fascinating, real life things that a lot of people aren't aware of and put them in as the bedrock of this thriller. Number one, down in Georgia, somebody put together. Somebody spent a fortune to erect these huge granite slabs. People are calling it the American Stonehenge. And on them, in 12 languages, including ancient Babylonian and Sanskrit, is written this terrifying agenda for the United States and the rest of the world. It's bizarre. People don't know if it's Ted Turner who did it or what. I've heard about this and investigated and thought, that's a fascinating, fascinating oddity. And I saved it in the back of my mind. And a couple of years ago, Ban Ki-moon, the UN secretary general, got together his inner circle and took over the chalet high in the Austrian Alps, sounds like something out of a Bond movie, tons of security. And they got together and said, you know what, let's figure out how to get the United States off the world stage so we can become number one and we can set the agenda for the rest of the world. And their agenda, what they wanted to do, got leaked out of this meeting. And several of the things they wanted matched up with the stones down in Georgia. And I thought, you know what, that's going to be the bedrock for my thriller.
MIKE: Now, watching the video -- the preview of the book. It's about a three-minute preview on your website. You talk about a one-two punch. You know what the first punch was going to be. Can you give us some insight without giving it away? Or can't you do that?
BRAD: No. I can tell you a little bit. So I have developed over the years with my thrillers a great network of active and retired people from the CIA, special operations community, and I like to ping them every once in a while and say, A, how are you doing? And, B, what's keeping you up at night? What are you afraid of happening? And there's something they've been worried about for a long time potentially coming out of Mecca in Saudi Arabia. It is the potential for an attack, a terrorist attack that would be simultaneously kicked off around the world. And it would be so crippling and so devastating that every single country would be affected at the same time and nobody would be able to come to anybody else's aid. So when I talk about the one-two punch in the book, what I do is I set up a particular line, a plot line, and you think you've got it figured out. Just when you think you have it figured out, the characters in the book are starting to tune in, and then this secret thing comes around the side. That's that second punch. Readers that have read the book so far have loved it, and nobody saw that second thing coming. It's a fun thing to do as a thriller writer.
MIKE: So when you write the book -- you say Glenn calls it faction. So tell me where something you've put in the book is fiction has become fact.
BRAD: All right. So several books ago, I wrote a thriller called the First Commandment. The first commandment in the War on Terror is thou shalt not negotiate with terrorists.
So on page one of the First Commandment, the very first page, I have a scene in Gitmo where not four, not six, but five high-value detainees are being released in a swap. That's exactly how many, five, were exchanged for Bowe Bergdahl.
MIKE: All right. So now I'm a little -- that is creepy. Does it creep yourself out yourself? How did you predict this? Or did you just take credit and say you knew it was coming?
BRAD: It's this funny kind of weird thing that I do where I look at the tea leaves and try to see over the horizon. It's one of the reasons that the Department of Homeland Security, I believe, brought me in to help them brainstorm as part of their analytical Red Cell Unit, what future terrorist attacks might look like, where and when they might happen. You know, it sounds conceited to call it a gift. That's not how I refer to it. My wife says I have ESP. If you pay attention, I'm on the Blaze.com all the time. I'm a voracious reader of news and all the articles that are popping. I think when that happens, you can kind of project forward and see what's coming. Maybe not everybody. For me, I can.
MIKE: Number 14 in the series, the book is Code of Conduct. What keeps it fresh 14 books in? How is this different 14 books?
BRAD: That's a great question. Glenn and I have had this talk before. That I'm a small businessperson. So the product that I create, that's my thriller. I'm selling escape to people. This is the kind of book I want to read when I go on vacation. Take to the pool, the lake, the beach. So my goal is to get better with every single book. With Code of Conduct, I set the bar really, really high. And I want to see if I can get over this bar. I want to see if I give my readers something they've never seen before from any other thriller author. It's setting that bar high which really makes it exciting to write and I hope exciting to read. This book is completely fresh because I'm pointing out threats to the readers that I think even they don't know exist. Real life threats that are after the United States, in particular.
MIKE: So you talk about Scot Harvath. And you allude to -- or, in the video you talk about Indiana Jones and James Bond and learning about them as opposed to -- you know, the character development of learning more about them. You accomplish that here in the book?
BRAD: Absolutely. That was another goal I set for myself. What I said on my website in that little three-minute video, describing the book and what people can expect of it, is that we want Indiana Jones to still be Indiana Jones at the end of the book -- or, at the end of the film. We want James Bond to still be James Bond at the end. But a trick for an author who brings back a recurring character -- which I do. All my books are meant to be standalones. So you can read them in any order. You don't have to start with the first one. You can start with Code of Conduct. The challenge is, how do I reveal a little bit more of Scot Harvath my main character in each book. This one, when my wife read it, she's my first reader, when she read it, she came and found me, she said, you know what, I love all your books. But what you did with the character developments, with the surprises on practically every page in this thriller, she said this is the best book you've ever written.
MIKE: On the Blaze tonight, you'll be in for Glenn. Tell us what will be on the show. All the usual outlets to get the book?
BRAD: Amazon with all its algorithms is predicting this will be the best-selling thriller of all time. Glenn was right when he said it was the best. Now Amazon is catching on. Tonight, we'll talk about serious stuff on the Blaze. We'll be discussing ISIS rebuke Iran, and Orwell and how all these things are tying together and why Americans need to be better tuned in to what's happening and what the Obama administration is doing both domestically and abroad and what it means for us as a nation moving forward. It's going to be a fascinating episode tonight.
MIKE: So I want to ask you before I lead into what I'm going to start talking about. I'll ask the expert. When you're looking at the deal that was just cut with the Iranians, as the president tries to sell this to the Congress and the American people and our allies in that region, the alliance now it seems to be between the Saudis and the Israelis. Is that just a small little picture of how dangerous this deal is? And what do you predict the next six to 12 months?
BRAD: Well, I'll tell you, it's amazing that anything could get the Arabs and the Israelis together on the same page. I mean, that's big, big deal.
You know, we talk a lot about if you could go back in time and stop Hitler and the Nazis, would you do it? This is one of those incredibly historic moments, and we made the wrong choice as a nation. Instead of stopping Hitler and the Nazis, we handed them a check for $150 billion and drew them a map straight to Czechoslovakia. It's a bad, bad deal. It's bad for stability in the region, and it's bad for stability overall in the world.
This is something -- the president plays an incredibly short game. He does not look long-term. And I don't think there's been a greater force for destruction in the history of this country than the Obama administration.
MIKE: All right. Well, Brad is in for Glenn. Brad Thor.com is the website. Code of Conduct. Fourteenth in the series. Predicted to be the best-seller ever.
BRAD: Only behind the Bible. That's how many copies they think it will sell.
MIKE: That's a high. You better do something special for number fifteen, right?
Thanks for being here. We'll be back here in just a moment. My name is Mike Broomhead. It's the Glenn Beck Program.