On this Sunday's "GPS," CNN host Fareed Zakaria blasted Glenn Beck's assertion that around ten percent of Muslims are terrorists.
Beck first made the claim in a 2003 book, but it didn't attract major coverage until he repeated it last week on his radio show. Zakaria said Beck's claims were ludicrous.
"Beck wondered why this wasn't receiving any media coverage," he said. "Well, let me suggest one reason. It is total nonsense. A figure made up by Glenn Beck with absolutely no basis in fact."
Zakaria noted that, according to the State Department, there were around 11,000 terrorist attacks committed in the world in 2009. He said he would be "generous" to Beck and assume that a hundred people carried out each attack -- even though, in reality, most involved from one to three people.
"One hundred people times 11,000 terror attacks equals 1,100,000 people," Zakaria said. "But Glenn Beck's figure is 157 times higher than that. If in fact there are 157 million Muslim terrorists in the world, what would the other 155,900,000 of them doing last year?"
Zakaria also debunked the response from Beck's producer Steve "Stu" Burguiere to the controversy Beck created. On his blog, Burguiere said that Beck was citing polls showing that many Muslims advocated or supported violent action against the United States, and that this matched the dictionary definition of terrorism.
"Of course, the FBI, the State Department and most other organizations define terrorists in the more common sense that they are well, terrorists, but never mind," Zakaria said. "Hating America is not the same thing as being a terrorist."
Zakaria also noted that many polls show a substantial percentage of Americans are angry with the government.
"Does supporting such anger against the American government make one a terrorist?" he said. "According to Glenn Beck's producer and his dictionary.com definition, maybe, but in that case, how would one describe a man who has been fueling such anger against the American government on television daily for the last two years? How, in other words, would one describe Glenn Beck?"
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