Last week, Glenn Beck and his co-hosts engaged in an unhinged rant against the widely popular protests in Israel. They characterized the protesters as "obviously from the hard left" and likened their economic demands to Soviet policies. Beck even speculated that the protests are being orchestrated with some sort of "leftist global financing" and that the protesters are working with Islamic extremists.
Apparently the backlash got to be too much for Beck. According to an Israeli news report, Beck is now insisting that his comments were misrepresented. Here's a translated excerpt from Yedioth Ahronoth:
Even though this visit was intended for other purposes, Beck doesn't evade referring to the encampment on Rothschild [the hub of the social protests]. This week his criticism of the protest was published in Israel, where he compared the protesters to communists. This time, he chooses the Margol [popular Israeli singer who attacked the protesters and backtracked after scathing criticism] tactic and says his statement was taken out of context.
"My position was misrepresented. The last thing you need is outsiders telling you what to do on domestic politics. I'm here only to say that Israel has the right to exist as independent Jewish state, with an undivided capital, and you have the right to defend yourselves. On everything else, decide yourselves."
Here's another Israeli report, in which Beck tells Israel Hayom that he was misunderstood:
Recently Beck got entangled in critical comments about the social protest. "I was misunderstood. I don't understand why it matters what I think about domestic Israeli affairs. All I said was 'who are those young people?' It could be that some of their demands are justified."
But as usual, Beck simply isn't telling the truth. Here is the audio and transcript of the relevant portion of Beck's August 10 radio show:
GLENN BECK (HOST): Stu, there's not - they're not getting a lot of play right now, but the 200,000 people on the streets of Tel Aviv demanding change in Tel Aviv and standing against Benjamin Netanyahu. Who are these people?
STU BURGUIERE (PRODUCER): You're going to be--
BECK: No, I won't be.
BECK: Neither will anyone in the audience --
BURGUIERE: No, not completely shocked at all. They have a list of demands. They're obviously from the hard left and they have a list of demands.
BECK: What makes you say that?
BURGUIERE: Because I've read their list of demands.
BECK: What are their list of demands?
BURGUIERE: Number one: increase personal tax brackets for top earners.
BECK: Oh, so hate the rich.
BURGUIERE: Have you heard that one before? Enshrine the right to housing in the law.
BECK: Good, good, alright.
PAT GRAY (CONTRIBUTOR): It worked out well for the Soviets.
BURGUIERE: Introduce rent controls, which is a wonderful economic concept that always works out well.
BECK: And you know what the thing is about Israel? There's no land. There's no undeveloped land there at all.
BURGUIERE: That would be a way to lower rents, wouldn't it? If you were to increase development in areas that -
BECK: Just develop - yeah, isn't that weird?
BURGUIERE: But you can't do that, of course.
BECK: Especially in Judea and Samaria.
BURGUIERE: What's -- what was the name of the--
BECK: Judea. Judea. Judea. You know, Jews - Judah --
BURGUIERE: I'm sorry - you said something before "dea."
BECK: Judea. Judea. Judea and Samaria. They now call it, I think the West Bank or something, but its real name is Judea and Samaria.
BURGUIERE: Boost mortgage relief, which is a -
BECK: Really? That sounds so familiar. It's almost like the AFL-CIO.
BURGUIERE: Stop further privatization of things such as health facilities.
BURGUIERE: Oh, I hate when you have a doctor or works for himself.
BECK: Especially health. Especially you've got a doctor that's doing it because he wants to.
GRAY: Give me Cuban health care every day of the week and twice on Sunday.
BECK: You're about to get it. You're about to get it.
GRAY: I know I am. I can't wait.
BECK: Oh, it's gonna be great.
BURGUIERE: Raise the minimum wage to 50 percent of the average wage.
BECK: It's about time somebody said it.
GRAY: Let's make sure that no one under 25 can ever be employed again.
BURGUIERE: Wait wait, there's one more. I love this one too. Provide free education from - what age would you say is the appropriate?
GRAY: I'd say zero.
BURGUIERE: Two? Two years old?
GRAY: I'd say zero - from the day they're born.
STU BURGUIERE: You're making a joke?
BECK: No, I'm not. No.
BURGUIERE: Because it's three months.
BECK: Three months.
BURGUIERE: Provide education -
GRAY: I was closer
BURGUIERE: For all of those three months old -- the three month olds that need to learn, because there's that - the high learning curve for three-month olds -- you gotta get them into school immediately at three months.
BECK: Immediately. Immediately. When you're right, you're right.
BURGUIERE: They're right, I think, on this.
BECK: And that's not a leftist group. So there's 200,000 people in Tel Aviv, I wonder if there's any financing behind any of that?
BECK: I wonder if -
GRAY: It's all grassroots.
BECK: No, it's gotta be. It couldn't be.
BECK: I mean, why even look? Why even look to see if there's any leftist global financing involved there in Tel Aviv? And you know what, Stu? Whatever you do, do not look to see if there's any kind of Islamist movement that is joining them.
BURGUIERE: Oh I'm sure that's not possible.
BECK: Yeah, sure.
BURGUIERE: That could never - you see the left, and Islamic extremists
BECK: They hate each other.
BURGUIERE: They hate each other. They never work together.
BECK: They hate each other.
BURGUIERE: It's never occurred in history.
BECK: Nope, never occurred in history.
BECK: Not happening now, I'll tell you that.
BURGUIERE: No, certainly not now.
BECK: Socialists and islamacists, they never get together. Okay, well the national socialists got together with the Islam--but that's completely, completely -- okay the communists and the and the and the Islamists got together, but that's completely -
GRAY: Couple isolated incidents -
BECK: Yeah -
GRAY: I mean -
BECK: I mean, okay it was happening in Egypt, and well it's happening in Libya -
GRAY: Again, isolated --
BECK: But, again, yeah there's nothing to even look into there. Nothing to even look - Oh by the way, I hate to even bring this up, the Islamists are saying that in Israel they would like to have these riots - I'm sorry, these gatherings every Friday now. Every Friday. They'd like to - because, they can - they can help. They can help. And they go to mosque, and then bring everybody out in the streets on Fridays. It's gonna be good. Jeffy, remember the first time we went to Israel about ten years ago?
JEFF FISHER (CONTRIBUTOR): Yes I do.
BECK: Wasn't that fun? Remember the Friday night when you get outta - they'd get outta mosque and it was so great, because they were so moved by the spirit and they were so full of love and joy and they would go to - right there to the wall and they would drop giant stones on the heads of Jews that were praying underneath.
FISHER: I thought that was part of the celebration.
GRAY: It's a beautiful gesture.
GRAY: Nothing says love like a giant rock dropping on your head.