The insane story of an American who ended up being a prisoner of war in Libya

Matthew Van Dyke was just a typical American kid. Grew up in suburbia, graduated college, had little world experience. He decided to buy a motorcycle and ride across the middle east. When the Arab Spring broke out, he returned to the region to help friends he’d made there - he was captured and sent to prison. Now he’s helping Christians in Iraq fight ISIS. Incredible.

Below is a rush transcript of this segment

GLENN: I want to introduce you to somebody who a lot of people I think will say, that's crazy, man. You'll appreciate him. But you would never do it yourself.

It is a -- it's a guy who decided -- well, I'll have him tell the story. He decided he needed to grow up. And he wanted to go and motorcycle across the Middle East a few years ago.

[laughter]

That didn't work out well. Matthew VanDyke did that and then and then he had a few experiences that changed the course of his life. And now he is somebody who is rolling up his sleeves and saying, I'm going to do something. Matthew, welcome to the program.

MATTHEW: Hey, thanks for having me.

GLENN: Sure. Tell me about what happened to you on kind of your tour of the Middle East and you found yourself in a prison for Muammar Gaddafi.

MATTHEW: Well, it's a very long story, but the short version is. I graduated with a master's degree from Georgetown in security studies and wanted to go see the region myself. So I took a four-year motorcycle journey in North Africa and the Middle East and did some filming and made good friends in Libya. So a few years later when the Libyan Revolution started and my friends needed help, I went to help them. And I joined the revolution as an American in the rebel forces. Fought in the war. Was wounded and captured. Spent nearly six months as a prisoner of war. Later escaped with other prisoners and returned to combat on the front line until the end of the war. And later did some film about the Syrian Revolution and worked in Syria. And in recent times, I've turned my attention to ISIS after the murder of my friends James Foley and Steven Sotloff at the hands of ISIS. And so I formed a company that operates essentially as a nonprofit in many ways. Called Sons of Liberty International. And we recruit US military veterans to go to Iraq and consult and train Iraqi Christians to fight ISIS. And we also are going to start supplying non-lethal aid to some of these Christian groups as well.

GLENN: Okay. So I'm not sure if I agreed with you in Libya or if I agreed with you in Syria. I mean, they're all really bad horrible guys. But, you know, the destabilization of the Middle East kind of came from that and what we supported in Egypt. And, again, really bad guys so you kind of look at it and go, I don't want those guys. But I also don't want the other guys coming in. I'd really like freedom in the Middle East. But that's not what's happening.

But now you are focusing specifically on the Christians. And when we spoke last time, you were talking about what they're going through. And there's really a Holocaust of Christians that is going on right now. And they're completely defenseless. And nobody in the United States -- our government is not helping them at all.

MATTHEW: Right. It's a quiet genocide that's happening right under our noses. And the administration is doing nothing about it. The administration supports just Kurdish Peshmerga. And also supports actually some Arab tribes that they think will fight ISIS. But the Christians are left completely defenseless. They were defenseless when they were attacked. The Peshmerga did not defend them. They slipped out the back door in the middle of the night, and the Christians woke up to find ISIS in their backyards. It's a serious crisis. The whole future of Christianity is threatened in Iraq.

GLENN: Tell me what their attitude is like, these Christians who have been abandoned by the world.

MATTHEW: Well, that's exactly how they feel. They feel abandoned. They can't believe the world doesn't care about them at all. They feel like they've been left in the hands of ISIS. They're desperate for international help. They like America. They prefer American help. I've taken leaders of one of the Christian militias to meet with the State Department and make their case. We have a good relationship with the State Department. But help for them is still not forthcoming, and it's really tragic. And there needs to be a lot more outreach about it. And a lot more political pressure put on Washington to do something about this.

GLENN: Matthew, tell me about what the situation is with the Christians. I mean, what have you seen? What have you heard? I mean, there are stories of crucifixions. And I've seen the pictures of it. But nobody reports on any of this. Tell me what they're going through.

MATTHEW: Yeah. It's really strange how little is reported on the crisis facing Christians. I don't know if it's not politically fashionable to report on this, except Christians have been beheaded, crucified. Put in cages and paraded around streets. Their homes have been burned down or blown up. In some cases, explosives have been wired to the doors, so if they ever return home, they'll be killed. Christian churches have been destroyed. Ancient manuscripts have been burned. Women and young girls have been kidnapped and sold as sex slaves by ISIS or taken forcibly as jihadi brides. It's a really horrible, horrible genocide occurring.

STU: Matthew, is there some weird like PR thing they're trying to do here? Are they worried that our outreach and help will look like it's too pro-Christian in the region? What could possibly be the reason that we would ignore Christians?

MATTHEW: I'm quite sure that's the reason. The administration has this view that they think it would like sectarian. That it might increase sectarianism. That it does not look good for the United States, in their view, to be supporting Christians against Muslims. That's how the administration thinks. The administration has already had sort of an anti-US power. Anti-US involvement. Apparently anti-Christian involvement.

STU: Gee.

GLENN: I want to get your opinion on this. We just released something last night on Facebook on genocide. And we're setting up the next Root. And it's on the --

MATTHEW: I saw it. It's excellent.

GLENN: Thank you. And it's talking about the genocide that was happening in north Africa that nobody was paying attention to. And the reason why, Turkey, in particular does not want to recognize genocide. And it leads to the Christians. And we're doing a big thing all this summer on the Christians over in the Middle East. And I want to get your -- your thoughts on this. That, we're not -- we're not talking about -- that it's -- let me put it this way. It would not be an overstatement to say, a Christian Holocaust is happening right now.

MATTHEW: That's exactly what's happening. And it's happening across regions, even. I mean, I've gotten emails from Christians in the Philippines who want help. And in Nigeria. And, you know, you saw Egyptian Christians executed in Libya. And Christians being attacked in Egypt. Everywhere that the Islamic State or its followers, and even not just the Islamic State, but also there's, you know, conflicts between religious extremists and Christians all over the globe happening right now. And it's widespread. And the world knows very little about it. And I think a lot of the reason sadly is because it's viewed as not fashionable to report on it. It's not fashionable to think about it. When I started working with the Christian community, I was attacked by people I know accusing me of being a crusader or you know, stoking the flames of sectarianism. It's just, you know, you can help any group except for Christians is what it seems like.

GLENN: We're talking to Matthew VanDyke. He's the founder of sonsoflibertyinternational.com. And I want you to go there. I want you to do your own homework. I want you to check him out. And if you feel prompted to help fund what he's doing, then that would be something that maybe you should do. People want to know, how can I help the Christians? Matthew, tell me specifically what you're doing when you go over there to help the Christians.

MATTHEW: Well, starting in December, we began training a Christian army. They're called the Nineveh Plain Protection Units. We provide consulting and advising to them for the structure of their force. You know, which men they should recruit. How they should deploy -- pretty much everything helping them build up an army. Took over US military veterans who served in Afghanistan and Iraq, and we started training. And in February, we trained an entire battalion. So there's nearly 350 Christian men serving in the force. They're very eager to defend their lands and fight against ISIS. And we continue to take trainers. In April, I'll return, shortly after Easter, with trainers for specialized training. And also, we have leads on supplying them with non-lethal aid and build them into a really legitimate good force. They're very US-friendly. They want to work with -- with the security forces of Iraq on a unified strategy to fight ISIS. They're very intelligent, very motivated. Very high morale and just excellent people to work with.

GLENN: Can I ask you a personal question? What is your relationship with Christianity? Why this passion for this? Is it just oppressed people or why? What role does God play in your life?

GLENN: Well, I became quite religious during my years on the road. You know, like many people, oftentimes when things went wrong, I'll admit. I call it a foul-weather Christian. You know, when things are bad, you pray a lot. I especially learned that lesson when I was a prisoner of war in Libya. For six months, pretty much all my conversations were with God only because I was in solitary confinement. So that really made me more religious in a quiet personal way that I don't talk about too much. I feel an affinity with fellow Christians in the region. They're also oppressed. They've been oppressed for a long time and persecuted for a long time, long before even ISIS came. The population of Christianity dropped from about 1.5 million in 2003 to less than 300 -- 300- to 400,000 now.

GLENN: That is phenomenal. And the idea -- and the -- the -- if ISIS has their way. There will be zero Christians in the area. Zero. I have had people from the Simon Wiesenthal come out and literally ask me to please stop concentrating so much on the Jewish persecution because -- and this is a quote. Because, Glenn, the real persecution that is happening right now is with Christians. And they are being wiped out systematically. So, again, if you would do your own homework and find out if you believe in Matthew's cause and what he's doing. All of the information is up on his website. And a chance for you to participate one way or another. Maybe you can donate. Sonsoflibertyinternational.com. This is somebody who is going over and helping the Christians. Again, with non-lethal aid, but teaching them how to defend themselves. Teaching them how to fight. Sonsoflibertyinternational.com.

STU: Now, Matthew, you're going back to the region this weekend. Right?

MATTHEW: Not this weekend. I've decided to stay for Easter. But after Easter, I'll be returning back.

STU: Wow.

GLENN: You ever concerned about not coming back? Have you considered of being beheaded and being one of those guys on the beach?

MATTHEW: Yes, and especially after my friends James Foley and Steven Sotloff were held by ISIS and executed, I thought, what if I were in their position, and also my experience in Libya. I do have a fear of being wounded and captured again. But, you know, if you believe in something, I think you should go out and do it. It's worth the risk for the cause and I believe in it strongly. So I'll take my chances. But we do take precautions. Myself and personnel. And we do the best job we can and we try to do it as safely as possible.

GLENN: I pray for your safety. God bless you. Thank you very much. Sonsoflibertyinternational.com.

Everything comes down to the two Senate runoffs in Georgia. If we lose both races, we lose the country. Democrats know this and are pouring in millions to usher in a Marxist agenda.

As the Left tries to hide how radical the two candidates really are, Glenn takes us inside the Democrat war room to expose the wolf in pastor's clothing, Raphael Warnock, and America's Justin Trudeau, Jon Ossoff. Socialism, the Green New Deal, and "defund the police" are all on the table. And Glenn warns of what's to come if conservatives don't activate: Chuck Schumer will weaponize the Senate, and the radical Left will launch an all-out assault to ravage the Constitution.

Watch the full special below:

The election and its aftermath are the most important stories in America. That's why we're offering our most timely discount ever: $30 off a one-year subscription to BlazeTV with code "GLENN." With BlazeTV, you get the unvarnished truth from the most pro-America network in the country, free from Big Tech and MSM censors.

Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas) joined the "Glenn Beck Radio Program" to explain how mail-in ballots are typically disqualified during recounts at a far higher rate than in-person, Election Day ballots, and why this is "good news" for President Donald Trump's legal battle over the election.

"One of the things that gives the greatest cause for optimism is, this election ... there's a pretty marked disparity in terms of how the votes were distributed. On Election Day, with in-person voting, Donald Trump won a significant majority of the votes cast on in-person voting on Election Day. Of mail-in voting, Joe Biden won a significant majority of the votes cast early on mail-in voting," Cruz explained.

"Now, here's the good news: If you look historically to recounts, if you look historically to election litigation, the votes cast in person on Election Day tend to stand. It's sort of hard to screw that up. Those votes are generally legal, and they're not set aside. Mail-in votes historically have a much higher rate of rejection … when they're examined, there are a whole series of legal requirements that vary state by state, but mail-in votes consistently have a higher rate of rejection, which suggests that as these votes begin being examined and subjected to scrutiny, that you're going to see Joe Biden's vote tallies go down. That's a good thing," he added. "The challenge is, for President Trump to prevail, he's got to run the table. He's got to win, not just in one state but in several states. That makes it a lot harder to prevail in the litigation. I hope that he does so, but it is a real challenge and we shouldn't try to convince ourselves otherwise."

Watch the video clip below to catch more of the conversation:

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Fox News senior meteorologist Janice Dean is perhaps even more disgusted with New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo (D) for his coronavirus response than BlazeTV's Stu Burguiere (read what Stu has to say on the subject here), and for a good reason.

She lost both of her in-laws to COVID-19 in New York's nursing homes after Gov. Cuomo's infamous nursing home mandate, which Cuomo has since had scrubbed from the state's website and blamed everyone from the New York Post to nursing care workers to (every leftist's favorite scapegoat) President Donald Trump.

Janice joined Glenn and Stu on the "Glenn Beck Radio Program" Tuesday to ask why mainstream media is not holding Gov. Cuomo — who recently published a book about his leadership during the COVID-19 pandemic — accountable?

"I'm vocal because I have not seen the mainstream media ask these questions or demand accountability of their leaders. [Cuomo] really has been ruling with an iron fist, and every time he does get asked a question, he blames everybody else except the person that signed that order," Janice said.

"In my mind, he's profiting off the over 30 thousand New Yorkers, including my in-laws, that died by publishing a book on 'leadership' of New York," she added. "His order has helped kill thousands of relatives of New York state. And this is not political, Glenn. This is not about Republican or Democrat. My in-laws were registered Democrats. This is not about politics. This is about accountability for something that went wrong, and it's because of your [Cuomo's] leadership that we're put into this situation."

Watch the video excerpt from the show below:

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As America grows divided and afraid to disagree with the Democrats' woke plan for America, Megyn Kelly is ready to fight back for the truth. For nearly two decades, she navigated the volatile and broken world of the media. But as America leans on independent voices more than ever, she's breaking new ground with "The Megyn Kelly Show."

She joined the latest Glenn Beck Podcast to break down what's coming next after the election: Black Lives Matter is mainstream, leftists are making lists of Trump supporters, and the Hunter Biden scandal is on the back burner.

Megyn and Glenn reminisce about their cable news days (including her infamous run-in with then-presidential candidate Donald Trump) and to look into the chaotic and shady world of journalism and the growing entitlement it's bred. For example, many conservatives have been shocked by how Fox News handled the election.

Megyn defended Fox News, saying she believes Fox News' mission "is a good one," but also didn't hold back on hosts like Neil Cavuto, who cut off a White House briefing to fact check it — something she never would have done, even while covering President Obama.

Megyn also shared this insightful takeaway from her time at NBC: "Jane Fonda was an ass."

Watch the full podcast here:

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