Glenn Beck jokes about 'Soviet' tent city protest

By Jennifer Lipman, August 16, 2011
Glenn Beck

Glenn Beck

Controversial US pundit Glenn Beck has enraged Israelis after he suggested social activists protesting against rising prices were Communists.

Mr Beck, a darling of America's right-wing, who is known for making outrageous statements, is in Israel at the moment for a rally in Jerusalem.

His "Rally to Restore Courage" will take place on August 24.

In a segment on his radio show, Mr Beck spoke of the activists in "tent city" as members of the "extreme left" and suggested they hated the rich because they wanted higher taxes for those who earned more.

Discussing their demands for housing to be a legally enshrined right, he joked: "That worked out well for the Soviets." He also mocked their demands for healthcare and free education.

He also said the real name of the West Bank was Judea and insinuated that the Israeli protesters were working with the Islamist movement.

Mr Beck recently compared the Norwegian youth camp attacked by an extremist gunman to a Hitler Youth rally.

In a forum on Ha'aretz a reader wrote: "Israelis should mobilise forces to protest the presence of Beck. His libels against the social justice movement should be confronted."

Another, presumably writing from outside Israel, added: "Can you please keep him in Israel ? "

A Facebook page calling for Mr Beck to "stay home" has attracted nearly 900 supporters. Mr Beck's page advertising his rally in Israel has just 86 fans.

Last updated: 3:03pm, August 16 2011