Beck Turns To Dubious Sources To Tie The Left To Radical Islam

On tonight's edition of his Fox News show, Glenn Beck claimed that “those on the left here in America are using people they think are just ridiculous to create the instability to change the world but they are playing with people that they don't understand at all.” To support his claims Beck turned to Christian Broadcasting Network's "terrorism analyst" Erick Stakelbeck and Reza Kahlili, a pseudonym for a person who is a self-proclaimed former CIA spy inside Iran.

It turns out that both of these guests fit within Beck's pattern of hosting guests with extremist or controversial backgrounds to validate his theories.

Stakelbeck has previously falsely claimed that all Muslim Arab countries see the West as the “infidel” attacking Muslims when they conduct military operations in the Middle East. He has also used debunked claims on radicalized mosques to support his views. His network was founded by televangelist Pat Robertson who has repeatedly made controversial statements towards Muslims.

Furthermore, according to The Washington Post, Kahlili's claims have been greated with “widespread skepticism.”

And both of them certainly did parrot Beck's own views. Stakelbeck claimed that the “left and radical Islam” “share a common goal,” and Kahlili attacked President Obama over his handling of Iran, a view shared by Beck.

During the segment, Stakelbeck stated:

STAKELBECK: Look, Glenn, at the end of the day, the left and radical Islam are very strange bedfellows on the surface, but they share a common goal. And that goal is the overthrow, the destruction of the Western Judeo-Christian civilization. So the left will get in bed with jihadists who stone homosexuals because basically, the jihadists are not Western. They're not Christian. They're not Judeo-Christian.

Beck then turned to “Reza Kahlili” to support his attacks on the Obama administration, which he had painted as anti-Semitic earlier in the program:

KAHLILI: The Iranian people have been aspiring for freedom and democracy and every time they've come out, they've been betrayed by the West. I mean, recently in the 2009 uprising, it was close to overthrowing this government, but President Obama chose to appease Ahmedinajad and Khamenei thinking that he could negotiate with them and the government suppressed the people.

In fact, the Obama administration spoke out in support of the protests. During a press conference President Obama remarked:

We will continue to pursue a tough, direct dialogue between our two countries, and we'll see where it takes us. But even as we do so, I think it would be wrong for me to be silent about what we've seen on the television over the last few days. And what I would say to those people who put so much hope and energy and optimism into the political process, I would say to them that the world is watching and inspired by their participation, regardless of what the ultimate outcome of the election was. And they should know that the world is watching.

In July 2010, The Washington Post's Jeff Stein did a piece on Kahlili, in which he reported that people greeted Kahlili's claims with skepticism and eye-rolling:

Reza Kahlili, a self-proclaimed former CIA “double agent” inside Iran's Revolutionary Guards, appeared in disguise at a Washington think tank Friday claiming that Iran has developed weapons-grade uranium and missiles ready to carry nuclear warheads.

The pseudonymous Kahlili, whose previous accounts have been greeted with widespread skepticism, also said Iran was planning nuclear suicide bombings with “a thousand suitcase bombs spread around Europe and the U.S.”


Several current and former U.S. intelligence officials in the audience “rolled their eyes” at Kahlili's claims, said one observer who was present.

Some in attendance compared Kahlili with Ahmed Chalabi, the former Iraqi exile who helped convince the George W. Bush administration that Iraqi leader Saddam Hussein had weapons of mass destruction. After the U.S.-led invasion of Iraq, the claims were proved false.

CIA spokesman Paul Gimigliano, who was not present, challenged the some of Kahlili's implications.

“As our government as a whole has made clear, Iran's nuclear program is a high-priority security issue. It would be wrong for anyone to suggest that the United States doesn't recognize that.”

One has to wonder where Beck finds these validators for his theories.