Glenn Beck has a conspiracy theory about the Boston Marathon bombing, but it’s having a hard time catching on with those outside the fringes of American life.
The conservative radio and television host has been promoting the idea that the US government is in on a plot to hide details of the Boston bombing plot and is covering up the involvement of a Saudi national once reported as a suspect. The mysterious Saudi Arabian man was once (falsely) reported to be a suspect, though it later turned out the Tsarnaev brothers were responsible.
Beck went further on The Blaze network, saying he has law enforcement sources who claim the Saudi Arabian was detained and later cleared all in the name of a government cover-up.
“The government has not come clean,” Beck said. “Some of this information has come out over the weekend, and immediately the government tried to discredit it.”
Beck said two FBI sources told him the man was in custody on the day of the bombing, and had “demonstrated [himself] to be a proven terrorist and to be engaged in proven terrorist activity.” But after a secret meeting between President Obama, Vice President Joe Biden and the foreign minister and ambassador from Saudi Arabia, the man was released, Beck said.
On his show Wednesday morning, Beck cited a document that he claimed is an official US “event report” showing that the Saudi in question was on a no-fly list and in the midst of having his visa revoked.
Glenn Beck’s conspiracy theory seems to have caught on with some politicians including members of Congress. Several members of the Congressional Committee on Homeland sent a letter to the Department of Homeland Security asking for more information.
Secretary of Homeland Security Janet Napolitano essentially laughed off Glenn Beck’s conspiracy theory. She said a letter from Rep. Jeff Duncan demanding more information on the alleged Saudi suspect was “so full of misstatements and misapprehensions and it’s just not worthy of an answer.”There’s a problem with Glenn Beck’s conspiracy theory, and Napolitano hinted to it — he’s got no real evidence to back it up. Brett Baier, a Fox News reporter and former colleague of Beck, looked into the Saudi Arabian Boston bombing conspiracy and found the same “event report” that Beck cited as evidence. He reached a very different conclusion than Beck.
It is “false and misleading” to use the internal document on the Saudi’s immigration to prove any kind of relation to the Boston Marathon bombing, US officials told Baier.
“The FBI says the Saudi [in question] was just a victim of the terrorist attack,” Baier said in a Fox video blog.
Others have treated the Glenn Beck conspiracy theory with equal disdain. Peter Grier, writer of DC Decoder for the Christian Science Monitor, noted that Beck’s evidence is at best flimsy and confusing and entirely reliant on what appears to be bad information to begin with. Grier writes:
“Of course, it’s easy to point out that all this is based on the word of US officials, and that they’re eager to cover up the conspiracy, since it makes them look bad, or they are part of it, or something like that.
“But that’s why conspiracy theories persist: it’s easy to dream them up, and hard to disprove them, especially to believers.”
And that is precisely why the Glenn Beck conspiracy on the Boston bombing is likely to persist.