By: Morton A. Klein
May 29, 2008
ZOA Defends Pastor Hagee and Applauds His Support For Israel
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New York –Today, Morton A. Klein, the National President of the Zionist Organization of America (ZOA), issued the following statement in defense of Pastor John C. Hagee, the Evangelical Christian leader and head of Christians United for Israel (CUFI), against attacks upon his work in support of Israel and the Jewish people:
“Pastor John C. Hagee is a staunch friend and supporter of the State of Israel, of Zionism, and of the Jewish people. The recent attacks on him that have surfaced in the media are ill-informed, offensive and deceitful ploys to marginalize and isolate particular pro-Israel opinions and sow further seeds of dissension between Jews and Christians. The political context of this controversy is no less troubling.
“Pastor Hagee has dedicated his life to combating anti-Semitism in the Christian world and supporting the State of Israel, and to ensuring that there will never be a second Holocaust. He and his ministry has given over $30 million for humanitarian causes in Israel, and he founded the group Christians United for Israel (CUFI) to organize and coalesce pro-Israel Christians into a large movement solely to support and build support for the State of Israel. Along the way, Pastor Hagee has traveled across the country spreading his message to Christians to love the Jewish people and stand with Israel.
“As a child of Holocaust survivors, born in a displaced persons camp in Gunzberg, Germany, I do not necessarily agree with every theological interpretation or spiritual message that Pastor Hagee, or anyone else, has sought from the Shoah. But one thing is clear — any interpretation by Pastor Hagee about the Holocaust is not based on any animus towards the Jewish people, which his lifetime of extraordinary pro-Jewish, Pro-Israel work clearly demonstrates. In fact, many leading rabbinical scholars have offered the same interpretations and found the same spiritual messages. It is not incumbent on anyone to agree with such interpretations as a prerequisite to embracing Pastor Hagee in the larger cause of strengthening and protecting the Jewish people by standing firm with Israel and against her enemies. There is no one who can doubt Pastor Hagee’s love of the Jewish State and of the Jewish people. He is a Zionist, in the purest sense of the term.
“The State of Israel remains besieged by her enemies and under enormous pressure with few friends, defenders, and supporters. Pastor John C. Hagee is a friend, a defender, and a supporter of Israel and his support is critical. He sends a message to the President and Congress and to the media and to the State of Israel that the Jews are not alone, thank G-d. Pastor Hagee teaches a love of Israel and love of the Jewish people, and actively confronts and combats anti-Semitism. He has reawakened the hearts and souls of many thousands of Christians, inspiring them to realize G-d’s holy land was given to the Jews, his chosen people. He has worked long and hard to educate others about the threats Israel faces, and about the dangers of pursuing mistaken or wrong policies. I thank G-d for instilling in Pastor Hagee the courage, wisdom and leadership to stand with Israel and to combat anti-Semitism. On behalf of ZOA, I thank him for his continued friendship and support.”