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A conservative talk show host has taken a swing at Detroit, making an unfavorable comparison between the Motor City and Hiroshima after the United States dropped an atomic bomb there during World War II.
On his self-named Fox News show Monday, Glenn Beck showed photographs of the devastated Japanese city after the bomb was dropped on Aug. 6, 1945 and then shots of the modern metropolis that the city has since become. Beck credited the turnaround of the city's fortunes on a culture of entrepreneurship and the free market system.
Beck then displayed black and white images that he said depicted wartime Detroit, and more recent shots of dilapidated buildings in the city such as the long-vacant Michigan Central train depot. He blamed the lack of corresponding development on Democratic city leaders who "embraced progressive policies and corrupt government and unions."
He also lashed out at Detroit stalwarts General Motors Co. and Chrysler LLC. He said the automakers are so rotten that they "stunk on ice" and that they had "begged for a bailout" from the government.
On Tuesday, Detroit's mayor lashed out at the critic.
"Like many national media members, Glenn Beck has probably never been to Detroit, understood Detroit, and doesn't care about Detroit," Mayor Dave Bing's office said in a statement. "We welcome him to see and experience Detroit for himself so that he can deliver facts, rather than repeat fiction."
The Associated Press left e-mails with "The Glenn Beck Show" and was unable to reach anyone through a telephone number on its website.
It's not the first time that Detroit has been the target of criticism on a high-profile TV show.
Late night talk show host Jimmy Kimmel joked that the city would burn if the Detroit Pistons won the 2004 NBA title, referring to the riots that followed the team's 1984 victory.
Kimmel later said he was sorry if he had offended anyone.
Fox is owned by News Corp.