Meanwhile, Robertson has reportedly issued an apology. Delivered by hand to Sharon's son (does anybody wonder how Robertson gets money for this stuff?), the letter ascribes Robertson's "inappropriate and insensitive" words to Robertson's "concern for the future safety of [Israel]."
This apparently was not enough to placate the tourism minister. Meanwhile, Hugo Chavez could not be reached for comment.
All this raises a question: now that Israel has broken ties with Robertson, will the rest of the world follow?
We can hope. And it seems that some have.
Over at the Conservative Voice, Adam Graham offers that Robertson has "jumped the shark" and calls for him to step down from the 700 Club. Graham's voice is heartening as he still finds means of viewing Robertson's legacy as positive in some regards, that is, "complex," like a "Christian Citizen Kane." He cites Robertson's notable achievements with Operation Blessing and Regent University, while noting his less than stellar record in politics.
But with Robertson's presence on TV, Graham nails the point succinctly:
CBN News is the crown jewel of the network. I remember how the reporters and anchors showed professionalism and poise while covering stories the mainstream media ignored. It is indeed for this reason that Robertson needs to step down from the 700 club. His comments detract from the professionalism of the committed men and women who work for his network. ... A man with foot in mouth disease should not be a broadcaster.
So what is Robertson's complex legacy? Again, we'll quote Graham:
Certainly, if at the end of my days, if it could be said that I helped feed millions, spread the Gospel across the globe, wrote a book on the end times that was better than Tim LaHaye's and rejected the pre-trib rapture, and hosted a TV show with a former Miss America that'd sound like a successful life to me. If on the other hand, I provided a forum for heretics and conmen, brought shame on my network through ill-chosen and unwise pronunciations, and had my political organization shrink to a shell of its former self because of my organizational decisions, than I'd have to consider my life a failure. What then if both were true? I guess that makes him human. For the flaws of great men are very great indeed.
SWNID, being SW but NID, says that Robertson's views of the end times are only marginally less flawed than LaHaye's. But we'll grudgingly grant Mr. Graham's assessment of Robertson's legacy, especially if doing so will in any respect hasten Robertson's departure from the airwaves.