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. elo

    BECK is not scary. He's out to make money for himself and probably doesnt believe 80% of the crap spewing from himself.
    WHAT IS SCARY though...are BECK followers. The easily persuaded, easily molded, LOW IQ, INBRED WHITE TRASH PIGS.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
    • JR

      AWESOME. You captured it. THe scariest thing about America is... AMERICANS. And yes, I am one since birth. Nation of morons, just waiting for the next persuasive Liar. 200+ years of pratice. And we are getting better and better at it.

      February 25, 2011 at 5:10 pm |
  2. RRP

    beck is losing his appeal and this calculated rant just gave him another fifteen minuets.. Fox won't fire him they love what he does to the bottom line regardless of how disgusting it is for Americas reputation.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  3. Rabbi Malachi

    Beck clubs baby seals with dead baby seals

    February 25, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  4. Miriam Hamsa

    People with ethics resign for less. And companies with ethics fire them for less. This man is repulsive.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:21 pm |
  5. Rabbi Malachi

    Beck clubs baby seals with deal baby seals

    February 25, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  6. BenB

    Beck is a complete jerk. If you listen to him, you need to check your brain cells, if you can find them. I gave up on Fox years ago. They are nothing more than the cheering team for the Republican Party. Truth is totally lost.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
  7. Benyamin

    I always new Beck was a Nazi from his book cover. This is typical of closet white supremacists, you can always count on them to hit on Jews at some point. That train is never late.

    The fact is, he has no idea who he's dealing with.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:19 pm |
  8. mick

    Actually, fundamentalist Christians are far more similar in nature and extremist beliefs to extremist, radical terrorists who also happen to be Muslim.
    But, I find it awesome that Beck and his employer felt so compelled by the influence of the Jewish community that he had to apologize for one of his ridiculous, stupid rants.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • JR

      Oh yeah. The Jews are trying to take over the world. Again. Amazing how persistent they are after almost 6,000 years without suceeding. ay whole.

      February 25, 2011 at 5:07 pm |
  9. geoffreyf

    I am Jewish and I do not accept his apology. You don't get off with a "Whoopsie" Glenn. It was more than misspeaking, it was a pattern of conduct which cuts deep into this anit-intellectuals black heart. It is time for him to leave the air.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  10. pdshane

    I'm surprised he didn't mention "The Protocols of Zion." What a psychotic retard.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:17 pm |
  11. Finnigan O'Hara

    Imagine Beck comparing orthodox Jews to Islamic extremists. Next he'll be saying Israel is a theocracy. Everyone knows God gave Israel to the Israelis. It's in the Bible.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:16 pm |
  12. ana

    Rick Sanchez got fired from CNN when he made comments on Jews, but Beck can keep his job....hmmmm....

    February 25, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  13. Mark Silvers

    Apology is not accepted. He's an idiot.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:15 pm |
  14. MostFelonsRlibs

    Had not watched his show in a while think I will tonight to do my part for his ratings hahaha......

    February 25, 2011 at 4:14 pm |
    • JR

      I'm sure he'll be excited. His ratings welcome another empty-headed parrot!

      February 25, 2011 at 5:05 pm |
  15. Paula

    Dear Glenn,

    How many minds do you think you poisoned today? Oh – sorry getting the stoy straigt is not on yur list of priorities. So sorry I got it wrong. Neverrrrrrr mind. Ooppps. Thanks for apologizing. I just wish that I could forget everything that you said. By any chance, do you know Sarah Palin??????

    February 25, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
  16. Nick

    He should apologize for his continued existence, next.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:12 pm |
    • Bejoth

      You provided the best comment yet.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:20 pm |
    • Shellz

      Amen to that!

      February 25, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
  17. MostFelonsRlibs

    Beck is more of a advocate of Jews and Israel than any liberal......really funny how the little fangs of liberal land come out anytime they sense blood in the water...hillarious, Libs they love the palistinians who danced in the streets at 911 and like them think 911 was a conspiracy but their not nuts..........hillarious. Rosie Odonnel "I think Bush did it, steel does not just melt from fire!"

    February 25, 2011 at 4:11 pm |
    • Fred Evil

      Liberals danced in the street at 9/11?!
      You are as big a disgrace as Beck, which is to say, monumental.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • AngryAtGov1

      Wow! I really wish the law required a minimum IQ to vote. It's scary that someone as moronic as you can vote.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:24 pm |
    • JR

      Beck likes (ie wants to reclaim) Israel. That doesn't mean he likes Jews. He just feels like his people will have an easier time of recapturing Jerusalem upon the second coming if the Jews have control of the place instead of the Muslims. So he supports the Jewish State of Israel. That he wants his people to control after everyone else is wiped from the Earth. ("Well, yes. Jews too. sorry.")

      February 25, 2011 at 5:01 pm |
  18. AIMolina

    Silly Beck, all topics can be touched, but for insulting Jews. Thats a no-no in our world

    February 25, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • Joe of Kent Island

      No, Jews just learned long ago that words of hate or lies unchallenged can become deadly actions.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:30 pm |
  19. e rod

    i don't even like glenn beck and i don't see anything wrong with what he said. as much as i hate to admit it, he was actually right about the reformed rabbis being the political ones. call a spade a spade. i never, ever thought i'd agree with anything from beck's lips.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
  20. Laura

    I am Jewish and I listen to Glenn Beck. In fact I have seen him live a few times. I accept his apology, as I'm sure once again, please took it out of context.

    February 25, 2011 at 4:10 pm |
    • Jan

      wow that makes you stupid in two different ways!

      February 25, 2011 at 4:18 pm |
    • Rabbi Malachi

      Ha ha ha! Pretty funny Jan. Hee hee.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:22 pm |
    • Dave

      Anyone BUT a wingnut who says this and you'd be all upset. Conservative hypocrisy is shameless

      February 25, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • elo

      LAURA, you are a disgrace to the Jewish people then. In fact, how dare you call yourself Jewish. Thats like saying Jewish Nazi. Oxymoronic. Get a life. Trash.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:23 pm |
    • John Galt

      Laura you are an ignorant troll..

      February 25, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • Rabbi Malachi

      I agree Laura is no Jew! neither is she remotely intelligent...

      February 25, 2011 at 4:25 pm |
    • John Galt

      I don't mean Laura is the troll I mean the rest of you D-bags.

      February 25, 2011 at 4:29 pm |
    • JR

      You are easily led, then. Just listen to this guy. Somebody please listen to this guy. If you are a jew and think he's just dandy then put on a hat... your ignorance is showing. You are no different than our foolish ancestors who said the same about the anti-Semite mouthpieces of their particular time in Europe. Every other thing out of his mouth is a diatribe against those who do not share his religious views. And he couches all of his hate in a cloak of American patriotism. This act is as old as the Mayflower! This country has seen that act before, but our memories are so da-n short! His demonization of Islam and all Muslims is at least as offensive as and no different than the anti-Catholicism of the early settlers, anti-Semitism of Father Coughiln and so many others from the first days of mass Immigration into the 21st century, the anti-intellectualism of McCarthy or the gay-bashing agenda of the present day conservative evangelicals. And he doesn't just focus on the easy target of our times... he is still hating on Jews! And somehow this country keeps giving him a free pass! He doesn't have your interests at heart dear. Yes, he is pro-Israel. Not because he is so supportive of a Jewish homeland. But only in the hopes that it will belong to "his" people after all the 'non-believers' are wiped from the earth. All the muslims, buddhists, atheists, hindi, and JEWS. His constant wailing about the disintigration of america is just a way to get into the empty minds of people just like you through fear and deception. This country is no more or less "good" than it ever has been. Founding fathers? You mean the slave-owning, woman-repressing, class-segregated ones? Please.
      In his head, he just wants to convince us that the only way to 'recapture our nation' is to start thinking like him when it comes to what is right and just. Which, of course, is the equivalent of following his religious beliefs.(I am not demonizing LDS. Just him!) I hope that we collectively come to terms with this nut soon. Before he does as much damage as Coughlin or McCarthy did. Coughlin definitely impacted america's initial hesitance to support the Brits/French against Hitler and (un)willingness to accept or assist german/occupied jews. People died. 'Your' people. There were plenty of Americans that bought his diatribes, hook line and sinker. Do you really want to end up on the wrong side of history this time?

      February 25, 2011 at 4:55 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.