Beck: 'I blew it' comparing rabbis to Islamic radicals
Glenn Beck at last summer's 'Restoring Honor' rally.
February 25th, 2011
12:07 PM ET

Beck: 'I blew it' comparing rabbis to Islamic radicals

By Dan Gilgoff, CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Glenn Beck is apologizing for remarks he made on his radio show comparing rabbis from a major Jewish tradition to Islamic radicals, saying, “I was wrong on this and I also apologize for it.”

“In this case I didn’t do enough homework,” Beck told radio listeners on Thursday, while his website said his comments contained “one of the worst analogies of all time.”

On Tuesday, Beck said on his show that “reformed rabbis are generally political in nature.”

“It's almost like Islam - radicalized Islam,” he continued, “in a way to where radicalized Islam is less about religion than it is about politics."

Beck’s comments came after a group of 400 rabbis, many from the Reform movement, took out a full-page ad in The Wall Street Journal blasting him for comments he made about the Holocaust.

Beck, who also hosts a show on Fox News, had aired a radio series about financier George Soros that accused him of collaborating with the Nazis to send Jews to death camps, according to the Jewish Funds for Justice, which sponsored the ad.

Soros is Jewish.

The Reform movement, founded in 19th century Germany, counts a million and a half Jews in North America, according to the Union for Reform Judaism.

Beck sent a letter to the Anti-Defamation League, a group that works to combat anti-Semitism, to apologize for his remarks.

“I was admittedly misinformed on Reform rabbis, and made a horrible analogy that I immediately attempted to clarify - quite honestly, I blew it on this one,” Beck wrote, according to a copy of the letter released by the Anti-Defamation League.

Anti-Defamation League National Director Abraham H. Foxman says he accepts Beck’s apology.

“Glenn Beck has shown that he understands how his remarks were offensive and out of line,” Foxman said in a statement Thursday. “We welcome his words of apology and consider the matter closed.”

The Jewish Funds for Justice, meanwhile, said Beck’s apology did not go far enough.

“Glenn Beck’s apology for comparing Reform Judaism to ‘radicalized Islam’ is welcome but incomplete,” the group said in a statement.

“While we are heartened to hear him recognize his ignorance,” the statement continued, “he still has not acknowledged that the letter signed by 400 rabbis and organized by Jewish Funds for Justice represented a cross-section of denominations, including Orthodox, Conservative, Reconstructionist, and Renewal rabbis."

- CNN Belief Blog Co-Editor

Filed under: Holocaust • Judaism

soundoff (1,083 Responses)
  1. Random Anonymous Blackmail

    He is only apologizing because his half-wit rants landed him in hot water with who writes his paychecks.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
    • jorge washinsen

      John Wayne said apologizing is a sign of weakness. Failure, due to weakness, to think before speaking.

      February 25, 2011 at 3:16 pm |
    • Reality

      Actually, Glen Beck blows just about everything in his Mormon-tainted tirades but hey it makes for a lot of money as he pocketed about $32 million in 2010. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/04/08/glenn-beck-earned-32-mill_n_529903.html


      February 25, 2011 at 3:21 pm |
    • libertarian

      ummmm...Rupurt Murdoch writes his checks, and he isn't jewish. Why do you assume jews write his checks? Cause you assume jews own the media, the banks and only that tin foil hat you and Beck wear keeps them from reading your thoughts? Idiot.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  2. Marian

    He calls George Soros a Nazi collaborator? So Beck's followers can't add either? Soros was barely 15 at the END of WWII, he was a child during the Nazi Regime - a Jewish child. Not only is Glenn Beck a liar and a bigot, he is incredibly cruel.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
    • Buster Bloodvessel

      "Glenn Beck a liar and a bigot, he is incredibly cruel" You just now figured that out? He's a comedian, and cruel is what his audience demands.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  3. downwithfox

    To whoever said "beck brings the TRUTH" he brings FAlSEHOOD, He promote an imperialistic veiw of the rest of the world in which the republican party has a monopoly on what is right and everyone else is wrong. Beck hasn't brought better jobs, wages, health care, or housing for the people. Where was he when his party was screwing latin america and then deporting immigrants that tried to get away from it? where was he when the bush-ites were covering up torture? He was defending the very people that did it.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
  4. jorge washinsen

    I can not for the life of me figure how everyone on here hates the man but can quote his every move to the second. Does not stack up. Maybe they are little closet Becks.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:11 pm |
  5. Bhavin

    This is what happens when idiots speak without thinking.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  6. Kevin

    Why are people so willing to accept apologies. The ADL should have said thanks for trying but you said what you mean and don't deserve to have your voice heard. The idea that you can just say your sorry even when your only sorry that people took offense is one of the reasons people get away with saying what they do.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  7. Sean

    shocking.. I did not think Beck could ever be wrong about anything!

    February 25, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  8. karate

    glen 'blows it' all the time ..nothing new here.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:09 pm |
  9. Patrick

    "Fact is Fox has more viewers than all of your non-news stations combined, has more reliable reporting, and always offers democrats the opportunity to appear on the network to debate. It's not their fault that the dems (like the ones in WI" are so cowardly that they refuse to appear"

    Yeah keep being duped that they are "fair and balanced" whenever a democrat on Fox makes a correct point they are told to shut up. Just as O'Reilly does all the time.

    Republicans are interviewed on liberal news outlets and they always get a fair shake... such as William Kristol on Jon Stewarts show et cetera. Jon doesn't tell William to shut up when he makes a point or speaks.

    Also... Fox has lots of viewers yes... but lots of democrats watch Fox for a good laugh and if you add up the viewers of all the media outlets that Fox and conservaties label liberal or biased they far outnumber Fox viewers.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
    • Tim Doogan

      I totally agree with what you said, but remember, Jon Stewart isn't news. It's my favorite show, and what we all WISH was the news.

      February 25, 2011 at 3:17 pm |
  10. jorge washinsen

    This audience seems to more fluent in Glenn Beck than anything else.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:08 pm |
  11. DN

    Has FOX News suspended Beck? I have not read any news on that, and that should have been done. If the network has not taken action, their inaction speaks volumes of this cable news netwok.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:07 pm |
    • George

      Fox is not a News network, it is entertainment and they have claimed that already.

      February 25, 2011 at 3:13 pm |
  12. Papa Joe Alaska

    This is Joe Mcarthy's son with a different last name. Beck as he is Joe's illegitimate son. This crazy man's 15 minutes of fame should be over . Have u noticed he has all the conspiracy theories covered so he can say "I told u so" in future shows. Seriously every once & awhile I watch him to laugh my as* off. The man is inane!!!!!!! LOL

    February 25, 2011 at 3:06 pm |
  13. hercme

    Please Mr and Ms Gullible of the ignorantized (my word) elite. Double standard, hypocrite, blah, blah , blah. It is so fitting of the responses from a news network that continues to spiral downward in the ratings. Love him or hate, facts are facts and he has the #1 program at the 5 o'clock hour. Nobody touches him. While the IE's (Ingnorantized Elite) grovel over the View and soap operas for their daily reality feed, This guy supports what he states, his passion is on par with Olberman, but the bottom line is he prevails with his audience, which are mostly according to Gallup polls, very educated with at least 58% are undergrads.

    February 25, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
    • George

      And then there are those who work and don't leave work until after his "show". So he is the #1 rated show of those who don't work or are unproductive during that time slot.
      If you listen and believe this self-professed entertainer as a "truth" teller, you are dumber than you look, if that is possible.

      February 25, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
    • Frank

      His ratings may be more an indication of the ignorance and arrogance of most of our population than it is an indication that Beck has any intelligence or insight.

      February 25, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • Buster Bloodvessel

      Hitler was popular, too. They poured out into the streets to cheer, and in the end they just put him in charge as a king. Didn't mean he was right.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:13 pm |
  14. TeaClown

    Ahh, the real kkk side of glen beck reared it's ugly buttocks

    February 25, 2011 at 3:04 pm |
  15. Nathan

    Someone please clue me in.

    It appears Reformed Judaism is the acceptance of Christ's teachings, but not his personification of his being God.

    On the other hand, It seems Islamic fundamentalism is the law of Moses, the eye for an eye, stoning etc. Ancient Jewish laws.

    And Jewish conservative, Hassidic, etc lies somewher in the middle. We do know that the Jewish law concerning mingling wasn't observed and created the blue eyed or blond haired Jews, right?

    February 25, 2011 at 3:03 pm |
    • Jon

      Just out of curiosity, do you call your mom and dad, "Aunt" and "Uncle"?

      February 25, 2011 at 3:12 pm |
    • Nathan

      The truth disturbs you, huh?

      February 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • Buster Bloodvessel

      "the law of Moses, the eye for an eye, stoning etc. Ancient Jewish laws." The Code of Hammurabi was given to Mankind by the God Marduk. You can just make some stuff up, but it's better to know the truth.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:05 pm |
  16. Fritz99

    I am puzzled, he compared them to Islamic radicals? Is Glenn Beck becoming more sensitive and eloquent? The Glenn Beck I know always compares everything he does not like with Hitler.

    That this guy actually has a following is a bigger mystery than the appeal of Justin Bieber!

    February 25, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  17. terri

    uh, did the reporters listen to his radio show? There wasn't any real apology.........sheesh

    February 25, 2011 at 3:01 pm |
  18. Brittany

    Wait, Glenn Beck apoglized for something he said?!?! Does Jon Stewart know about this?!?!? I'm shocked!

    February 25, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
  19. Jake T

    Jim in Maine, right on! Think the boycott idea is a great one!

    February 25, 2011 at 3:00 pm |
    • MostFelonsRlibs

      A top rated show with powerful sponsorship, boycott? Hillarious libs, you have been boycotting him hence why all the misquotes and villifying that really does not work.....if anything it increases his standing among moderates and independants whom will put your false messiah back as an abulance chaser in 2012.....

      February 25, 2011 at 3:49 pm |
  20. pablo

    Beck is a pseudo-intellectual and a professor wanna be. He and Rush Limbaugh should shack up together as they are a match made in heaven. I would like to see a tag team match between Beck and Limbaugh on the right against Keith Olbermann and Rachel Maddow on the left. None of them have anything to do with the news.

    February 25, 2011 at 2:59 pm |
    • Tim Doogan

      You said it. Just because I don't agree with right doesn't mean I agree with the left.

      February 25, 2011 at 3:14 pm |
    • beanyric

      Radical Islam??.........................I think we better start fearing radical idiotic "journalists" that all they want to do is preach rhetoric to a misinformed, undereducated and misquided public. Glen Beck is just the tip of the iceberg when it comes "radical" journalism. He doesn't care about right or left (if he knows one from the other) all he cares about is "Glen Beck"

      February 25, 2011 at 3:15 pm |
    • alan

      No Pablo Beck and Limbaugh are a match made in HELL. You can NOT put Obermann and Maddow in the same heap with these hate filled idiots. Beck and Limbaugh AND their supportera ARE about HATE. America can not thrive on hate. Hate is unpatriotic as anything will ever be. Take note fellow Christians.

      February 25, 2011 at 3:20 pm |
    • beanyric

      As Socrates said..............I know nothing except the fact of my ignorance. Hello Glenn, ring a bell?????

      February 25, 2011 at 3:22 pm |
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About this blog

The CNN Belief Blog covers the faith angles of the day's biggest stories, from breaking news to politics to entertainment, fostering a global conversation about the role of religion and belief in readers' lives. It's edited by CNN's Daniel Burke with contributions from Eric Marrapodi and CNN's worldwide news gathering team.