On Thursday, “The Young Turks” (TYT) co-creator Cenk Uygur had network commentator Hasan Piker, who is Uygur’s nephew, on the program to discuss controversial statements he made on Tuesday night about 9/11 and Rep. Dan Crenshaw (R-TX). During a Twitch livestream, Piker said “America deserved” the terror attacks on September 11, 2001 that left 3,000 innocents dead and viciously mocked Rep. Crenshaw, a former SEAL, for losing his eye during an IED explosion while serving overseas.
Uygur disavowed the statements made from Piker throughout the discussion, but noted his nephew should have a chance to explain the commentary. For his part, Piker said he used imprecise language when he declared “America deserved 9/11,” underscoring that he is “anti-war,” and suggested one could “chalk” up the apparent error “to English being [his] second language.”
“I thought that I was saying that, you could draw a direct line, basically, that it was a consequence all of the things that we (the United States) have done in the region,” Piker told Uygur, explaining his 9/11 comment.
The TYT host told Piker that it was still “wrong” to say “Americans deserve 9/11.”
“No, I didn’t say, ‘Americans deserve 9/11,’ I said, ‘America deserves 9/11,'” Piker said.
“And that’s still wrong,” replied Uygur.
“Well, maybe you could chalk it up to English being my second language, or whatever you wanna chalk it up to,” Piker responded, adding that he “should have used more precise and better use of the language there.”
According to his Politicon profile, Piker was “born in New Brunswick, New Jersey, and raised in Istanbul, Turkey.”
“It’s messed up that I would even give the opportunity to the Right to try to morally grandstand on an issue like this when they are 100% responsible for all the bloodshed that has been caused, even some other outlets in the mainstream media are also culpable in this circumstance,” he added.
— KEEM 🍿 (@KEEMSTAR) August 21, 2019
During the Tuesday livestream, Piker also viciously mocked Crenshaw’s wartime injury. “This guy has the understanding of foreign policy of, like, a 12-year-old. What the f***. What the f*** is wrong with this dude? Didn’t he go to war and like literally lose his eye because some mujahideen — a brave f***ing soldier — f***ed his eye hole with their d***?” he ranted. “Isn’t that how he f***ing lost his dumba** eye, because he got his f***ing eye hole f***ed, by a brave soldier?
Cenk's Nephew called the man who took @DanCrenshawTX's eye a "brave fucking soldier" This is what happens when you're gifted a job by your Uncle you know you didn't earn & it eats away at your mental state. pic.twitter.com/BohESrbvJ6
— Sean Fitzgerald (@IamSean90) August 21, 2019
Defending the vile remarks, Piker emphasized that he does not owe Crenshaw respect for serving in our military, though he noted that the Republican took the mockery “like a champ.”
“I have to make one note: Service does not guarantee respect. It should not. I’m sorry,” the commentator told Uygur, adding the accusation that Crenshaw is using his veteran status “to continue sending loads of young men and women overseas to die or to come back home and fail to reintegrate into society just exclusively for the profits of the military-industrial complex.”