Less than six weeks after nationally syndicated Clear Channel radio host Glenn Beck aired the audio of the execution of American civilian Nick Berg and called Berg's father "despicable" and "a scumbag" for criticizing President George W. Bush and the war in Iraq, Secretary of State Colin Powell was Beck's guest on the June 23 edition of The Glenn Beck Program.
Earlier in the same show, before Powell's appearance, Beck read aloud a list of interrogation techniques that had been approved for extracting information from detainees at Guantánamo Bay, several of which were rejected by Defense Secretary Donald Rumsfeld. After reciting the list of techniques, including "[r]emoving a detainee's clothing" and "[u]se of dogs to frighten a detainee" (techniques USA Today reported as "apparently dropped in April 2003"), Beck asked, "Can we please move on with the torture? Is there anybody who has a problem with these techniques?" Beck then asserted his belief that "releasing this stuff [the list of interrogation techniques*] I don't think necessarily hurts us."
BECK: [I]f I'm an interrogator and they say, [imitates Arabic accent] "I read in your papers that you cannot torture me," I'll say, "Yeah, you know, you saw another thing in the papers, you saw pictures of people being tortured. And I just want you to look around, little, uh, Habib, here, I want you to look around the room. Notice one thing is missing, and that's called a camera."
In contrast, Secretary Powell has condemned the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib as "immoral," "despicable," and "totally out of character of what we would expect from our men and women in uniform."
The Philadelphia-based Glenn Beck Program is syndicated on more than 100 stations across the United States by Premiere Radio Networks, Inc., a subsidiary of Clear Channel Communications Inc. According to the Associated Press on April 30, Clear Channel Communications is "the nation's largest radio chain and owner of 1,182 of the nation's 13,000 radio stations." Beck's show airs Monday through Friday 9 a.m. to noon (ET).
*Correction: When this item was first published, the bracketed text was incorrect. The bracketed text [photos of the abuse of Iraqi prisoners at Abu Ghraib] has been corrected above to read as follows: [the list of interrogation techniques]. We regret the error. [back to article]