More than 10,000 people have signed an American Jewish organisation’s petition calling on Rupert Murdoch to fire controversial pundit Glenn Beck because of his “grotesque falsehoods” about Jews.
Jewish Funds for Justice (JFSJ) launched the petition following the showing of Mr Beck’s recent three-part series “Puppet Master” on Fox News. The channel is part of Mr Murdoch’s media empire.
On the programme Mr Beck attacked Jewish businessman George Soros’ Holocaust record and accused him of helping “to send the Jews to the death camps”.
He also suggested Mr Soros was a “puppet master…at the centre” of the economic crisis and made the comment in front of a picture of a star or David.
JFSJ said Mr Beck seemed “to draw his material straight from the antisemitic forgery, the Protocols of the Elders of Zion”.
The group also criticised a programme earlier this month in which Mr Beck examined the nine public figures of the last century who created "the era of the big lie". The list included Jewish psychoanalyst Sigmund Freud and Jewish writer Walter Lippman.
The JFSJ president, Simon Greer, said: "We find it hard to believe that it was only coincidence that eight of the nine individuals on his list alleging a shadowy alliance to control the Americans through propaganda were Jewish.”
Last week Mr Greer accused Fox News of having “a Jewish problem”, in the wake of the furore over Mr Beck’s fellow Fox presenter Sarah Palin’s claim the media had created a blood libel against her.
He said: “In the past two months, Ms Palin and Mr Beck, the most well-known media personalities on Fox News, have abused two of the most tragic episodes in the history of the Jewish people: the Holocaust and the blood libel.
“[These] denigrate the very real pain so many Jews have suffered.”
Mr Greer and his supporters attempted to hand the petition to Mr Murdoch’s staff at the News International headquarters in New York yesterday, but were stopped by security. They have pledged to post it instead.