MSNBC's Chris Matthews was wrong to say Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu "tried to take over U.S. foreign policy" by addressing Congress, says Ben Stein, actor, author and former speechwriter for Presidents Richard Nixon and Gerald Ford.
But in no way did Matthews' remarks about the leader of the Jewish state smack of anti-Semitism, Stein said Wednesday on "The Steve Malzberg Show" on Newsmax TV
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Following Netanyahu's speech about his belief that Iran poses a nuclear threat, Matthews raged: "This man from a foreign government walked into the United States legislative chamber and tried to take over U.S. foreign policy. He said you should trust me, not your president on this.
"I'm the man you should trust, I'm your true leader on this question of U.S. geopolitics, to protect yourself you must listen to me and not to this president … This was a takeover attempt by Netanyahu, with his complying American partners, to take American foreign policy out of the hands of the president."
Stein told Steve Malzberg while he vehemently disagrees with Matthews, "I would never in a million years accuse Chris Matthews of being an anti-Semite, he is a wonderful man."
Stein, the author of Newsmax Magazine's Dreemz column, applauded Netanyahu's speech, saying it was a learning experience.
"We learned things, at least I did, [and] I consider myself fairly knowledgeable about foreign policy and defense," he said.
"I didn't know the [proposed Iran nuclear] deal expired in 10 years, I didn't know it still allowed [them] to keep several thousand centrifuges [for nuclear production]. Those are important points to know about.
"I didn't know that Hezbollah said it's going to hunt down every Jew in the world and kill him or her. These are things I'd like to know about."
He said for Matthews, "a very intelligent and well-informed man and a gentleman," to pooh-pooh Netanyahu is "just nonsense."
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