Did Republican Presidential Hopeful Ben Carson Confuse Hamas and Hummus?

U.S. Republican primary candidate raised hackles at a speech before the Republican Jewish Coalition when he repeatedly mispronounced 'Hamas,' turning it into something that sounded just a bit like 'hummus.'

Republican Presidential hopeful Ben Carson speaks during the 2016 Republican Jewish Coalition Presidential Candidates Forum in Washington, DC, December 3, 2015.
AFP

Does hummus really rule the Gaza Strip?

U.S. Republican primary candidate Ben Carson raised hackles at a speech before the Republican Jewish Coalition on Thursday when he repeatedly mispronounced “Hamas,” turning it into something that sounded just a bit like “hummus.” 

The candidate has taken serious heat for his lack of foreign policy knowledge - two weeks ago, his own foreign policy advisers told the New York Times that he is struggling to grasp the subject, stating, “nobody has been able to sit down with him and have him get one iota of intelligent information about the Middle East."

The latest incident isn’t going to improve his standing, but reporters present noted that it did create amusement for the crowd, and it also sparked some witty responses on social media.

Carson was overshadowed by fellow Republican contender Donald Trump, whose speech was criticized as bordering on anti-Semitic.

Carson isn’t the first person to make this slip of tongue. Speaking before the Knesset two months ago, Indian President Pranab Mukherjee accidentally told MKs that Indians enjoy the taste of Hamas.

And more famously, comedian Sacha Baron Cohen led an entire debate between former Mossad agent Yossi Alpher and Palestinian academic Ghassam Khalib that confused Hamas and hummus. The scene appears in the movie “Bruno.”