Glenn Beck reached to the right-wing fringe for validation of his discredited conspiracy theory about the coming Islamo-Communist global takeover: Andrew Roberts, who advocated for mass internment of Iraqis and reportedly spoke at a dinner commemorating "the white supremacist government of Rhodesia"; and David Horowitz, who has a long history of pushing the same discredited conspiracy theories that Beck peddles.
Beck Asks Andrew Roberts To Validate His "Crazy Conspiracy Theory"
Beck Prompts Andrew Roberts To Dismiss Criticism Of Beck's "Crazy Conspiracy Theory." From Beck's interview with Andrew Roberts:
BECK: Tonight we're talking about history's failed revolutions and what they can teach us today. Still with us, Robert Gellately, and Andrew Roberts, and David Horowitz. Andrew, I want to come to you before we go to David. I got a lot of heat here in America for saying that radicals, Islamists, communists, socialists, labor unions from all over the world are working together, even though they don't agree with each other on everything, to destabilize and start revolutions and that's what happened in Middle East and it started with Tunisia, and then Egypt, and Libya, and it's headed all over the Middle East. Do you think that's a crazy conspiracy theory?
ROBERTS: No. No, I certainly don't think it's a crazy conspiracy theory at all. If these organizations want the same thing, then of course, it's in their interests to work together. They won't necessarily work together in the same way that you would expect democrats to. They won't necessarily even have to communicate much with one another. But the fact is that, if they want the same thing they will go out and get it. And we see that again and again in history.
And also the other thing that's terribly unimportant is numbers - you don't need large numbers to create a revolution. Sometimes like the Bolsheviks, the very word Bolshevik in Russian means minority. They can always be very small number, small numbers starting these huge and disastrous historical phenomena.
BECK: And doesn't that work actually to their advantage? Because people dismiss them - they dismiss them -
ROBERTS: That and also they can stay organized. They can have a central series of commands which are unquestionably obeyed in the way that a large mass movement often can't have. [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 3/04/11]
Roberts "Celebrates The Most Murderous Acts Of The British Empire"
Roberts Offered "An Extraordinary Rationalisation For Killing Women And Children In Cold Blood." Johann Hari of The Independent profiled Roberts in a 2009 column, writing that he "celebrates the most murderous acts of the British Empire." Hari wrote that Roberts' writing "consists of elaborate defences for the crimes of a white man's empire - and a plea to the US to continue its work":
How should this empire exercise its power? One useful tactic, Roberts appears to believe, is massacring civilians. The Amritsar massacre is one of the ugliest episodes in the history of the British Raj. In 1919, Brigadier-General Reginald Dyer opened fire on 10,000 unarmed men, women, and children who were peacefully protesting, and about 400 died. Dyer was even repudiated by the British government. As Patrick French, an award-winning historian of the period, explains: "The biographies of Dyer show that he was clearly mentally abnormal, and there was no way he should have been in charge of troops."
Yet Dyer has, at last, found a defender - Andrew Roberts. In his book A History Of The English-Speaking Peoples Since 1900, he says that after Dyer shot down the peaceful crowd, "[i]t was not necessary for another shot to be fired throughout the entire region". He later comments: "Today's reactions to Dyer's deed are of course uniformly damning ... but if the Amritsar district, Punjab region or southern India generally had carried on in revolt, many more than 379 people would have lost their lives."
It is an extraordinary rationalisation for killing women and children in cold blood, and rejected by virtually all other historians. It was only after I exposed this passage that Roberts finally said: "I have never approved of massacring civilians." [The Independent, 7/31/09]
Roberts Advised Bush To Adopt "Mass Internment" Of Iraqis. Hari also wrote:
But in his writings Roberts is even supportive of politicians who take mass punishment to its most extreme conclusion: concentration camps. His political hero is Lord Salisbury, the British prime minister who, during the Boer War, constructed concentration camps in South Africa that inspired Hermann Goering. Under Salisbury, the British burned Boer civilians out of their homes and farms and drove them into concentration camps, so they could grab control of one of the most strategically important parts of Africa. The result was that about 34,000 people - some 15 per cent of the entire Boer population - died in the camps, mainly of disease and starvation.
Roberts presents a very different picture. He says the British introduced "regime change" in Pretoria out of a concern "for human rights". Far from being a "war crime", the concentration camps "were set up for the Boers' protection". The mass deaths there were not a result of British policy. No: they were primarily the prisoners' own fault, because they didn't know how to take medicine or treat disease, and deliberately spread lice.
The "evidence" he gives for this is the word of a single British doctor who worked in the camps. What would our picture of the German camps look like if we relied on the words of a Nazi-employed doctor? Professor Mike Davis, an academic expert on the British Empire, says: "His arguments about the Boer concentration camps are similar to the arguments of the apologists about the Nazi camps."
This is not merely a matter of the past. Roberts sees his histories as road maps to the future, advising George W Bush, at a White House dinner to celebrate his histories, to adopt "the whole idea of mass internment", saying: "I think it is the way the administration of Iraq should go." Incredibly, he cited Ireland as a model of how internment can work, a claim that provokes incredulity in Irish historians. [The Independent, 7/31/09]
Roberts Spoke At A Meeting Celebrating Apartheid. From a July 31, 2009, article in The Independent:
Roberts, who has a new book out this week, describes himself as "extremely right-wing". To understand him, you need to look at a small, sinister group of British-based South African and Zimbabwean exiles he has associated with. In 2001, Roberts spoke to a dinner of the Springbok Club, a group that regards itself as the shadow white government of South Africa. Its founder, a former member of the neo-fascist National Front, says: "In a nutshell our policy can be summed up in one sentence: we want our countries back, and believe this can now only come about by the re-establishment of civilised European rule throughout the African continent."
The club, according to its website, flies the flag of apartheid South Africa at every meeting. The British High Commission has accused the club of spreading "hate literature".
The dinner was a celebration of the 36th anniversary of the day the white supremacist government of Rhodesia announced a unilateral declaration of independence from Great Britain, because it was pressing the country to enfranchise black people. Surrounded by nostalgists for this racist rule, Roberts, according to the club's website, "finished his speech by proposing a toast to the Springbok Club, which he said he considered the heir to previous imperial achievements".
When I first pointed out this connection, Roberts said he gave a "historical speech", hadn't realised the Springbok Club was a racist organisation, and didn't recall anyone saying anything racist. Wasn't the apartheid flag, and the fact they were there specifically to celebrate the anniversary of a white supremacist declaration, a hint? [The Independent, 7/31/09]
The Economist: Roberts' Work Is "Larded With Its Author's Prejudices" And "Errors." From The Economist:
Mr Roberts limits his range to countries where English is the first language: America, Britain and its former dominions, core countries which he sees as "the last, best hope of Mankind", the source of the Rights of Man, free markets and the British Empire.
George Bush described this recently as a "great book". But Mr Roberts's work is less a history than a giant political pamphlet larded with its author's prejudices, with sneers at those who do not share them and with errors. [The Economist, 11/02/06]
Beck Asks David Horowitz To Justify His "Crazy Conspiracy Theory"
Horowtiz Says Beck's Conspiracy Theory Is "The Truest Thing Anybody Has Said About The Crisis In The Middle East." From the March 4 edition of Glenn Beck:
BECK: David, I know you don't have - I don't think Fox doesn't go to LA, they don't let it in - LA. So you can't see these, but I'm holding them up. And one is the International Socialist Organization logo, and the other is the AFL-CIO Stand With Wisconsin logo. They're identical. Would you guys agree they're identical? Yeah, they're identical.
HOROWITZ: Well of course. The socialist radical left took over the AFL-CIO years ago.
BECK: So when --
HOROWITZ: And I think your statement that the international left including the unions is working in the same direction with the Islamic jihadists and Muslim Brotherhood is the truest thing that anybody has said about the crisis in the Middle East. I wanted to say you hear people saying America has to get on the right side of history. You have to ask yourself, you know, would you have wanted to be on the right side of history in 1917, which led to the slaughter of 40 million people, or in China in 1949, or in Germany in 1933, or in Iran in 1979 when the Ayatollah came to power, or in Cuba in 1959.
Progressives have this idea that history is a forward march, and that just around the corner there is a better world, and a miraculously better world. And that's why when they get power they kill so many people.
BECK: David --
HOROWITZ: But it's obviously false. If that were true the 20th century would have been the best century - and actually from the point of view of human rights and the murder of innocents, the 20th century is the worst century in the history of mankind. So be careful before you stabilize - or applaud the destabilization of a whole region --
BECK: OK David, let me --
HOROWITZ: -- Such as is happening now. [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 3/04/11]
Previously: Horowitz Applauded Beck For "Educat[ing] Americans About The Unholy Alliance Between The Secular Left And The Islamic Jihadists." From David Horowitz's NewsReal Blog:
Bill Kristol is entitled to his optimism about democratic revolutions in the Islamic world. Perhaps the elections in Egypt will turn out better than those in Gaza where Hamas now rules a terrorist state; Iraq, which has instituted an Islamic Republic; Lebanon, where Hezbollah now rules a terrorist state; and Afghanistan, which is a kleptocracy wooing the terrorist theocracy in Iran. What he should not be doing as a conservative leader is demonizing Glenn Beck, who has done more to educate Americans about the unholy alliance between the secular left and the Islamic jihadists than anyone else. Kristol needs to apologize to Beck for comparing him -- outrageously -- to the conspiracist Robert Welch, and should be embarrassed by his own ignorance of the agendas of both American radicals and their jihadist allies. At this point in time, such ignorance is not only inexcusable but dangerous. [NewsReal Blog, 2/08/11]
Horowitz Has Pushed Conspiracy Theories, Fringe Views
Horowitz: DiscoverTheNetworks Shows "That There Are Only A Couple Of Degrees Of Separation Between Anybody On The Left And The Terrorists." In a March 24, 2005, interview about his website DiscoverTheNetworks, Horowitz said:
For 20 years, I dreamed of writing a book about the left, based on the reality I carry around in my head, as somebody who spent decades on the left or studying it. ... The Web provides a wonderful format, because you can put up hundreds of tables of contents, indexes and links, and you can even provide visual maps, which will show you the network on one screen. ...
What I've shown is that there are only a couple of degrees of separation between anybody on the left and the terrorists - and that includes people in the Democratic Party, even those who are anti-terrorist.
For example, the coalition of civil liberties groups that attacked the USA Patriot Act are thoroughly penetrated by pro-terrorist radicals based in organizations like the National Lawyers Guild and the Center for Constitutional Rights. This doesn't mean that every Democrat or every Republican who opposes the USA Patriot Act is a "useful idiot." ... But it does mean that they need to be more mindful of the arguments they are being presented with and supporting. [The Washington Times, 3/24/05, accessed via Nexis]
Horowitz's Website Pushed Brazilian Oil Conspiracy. Like Glenn Beck, DiscoverTheNetworks pushed the conspiracy theory that Obama is trying to enrich financier and philanthropist Soros through a Brazilian oil company. The theory is based on the false claim that Obama issued a loan to Brazil's Petrobras oil company; in reality, the loan was approved by appointees of the Bush administration to the Export-Import Bank of the United States. Kevin Varney, senior vice president and chief of staff of the bank has reportedly said that the decision to approve the loan "did not even rise to the level of presidential awareness." Furthermore, Soros decreased his stake in Petrobras before the funds for the loan in question were distributed. [Media Matters, 10/11/10]
Horowitz Claimed There Was A Muslim Brotherhood "Infiltat[or]" At CPAC. On February 12, at CPAC, Horowitz attacked conservative activists Suhail Khan and Grover Norquist, claiming that Khan, with Norquist's aid, "infiltrat[ed]" CPAC, the Bush White House and the conservative movement on behalf of the Muslim Brotherhood. [David Horowitz's CPAC speech, 2/12/11]
Horowitz: "Blacks Are The Human Shields Of The Democratic Party." Horowitz called Jimmy Carter an "anti-Semite" and said "blacks are the human shields of the Democratic Party." [Fox News, Glenn Beck, 9/16/09]
Horowitz: Professors "Are Recruiting For Radical Parties, Terrorist Supporting Parties, No Question." Horowitz claimed that university professors are "recruiting for radical parties, terrorist supporting parties, no question." [Fox News, Hannity, 9/03/10]