Christian Leaders Converge on DC to Lobby Against Hagel Confirmation

January 30, 2013 9:03 am 5 comments
Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg (left) raises a question to Rabbi Pesach Lerner at the CUFI (Christians United for Israel) emergency lobbying session against the nomination of Chuck Hagel for defense secretary in Washington, DC, Monday. Photo: Maxine Dovere.

WASHINGTON, DC - Hundreds of pro-Israel Christians descended on Washington, DC, on Monday to raise heated voices against the confirmation of former Nebraska senator Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.

The Action Fund of Christians United for Israel (CUFI) brought more than 400 Christian leaders, in addition to some rabbis, from 46 different states to Capitol Hill to lobby their U.S. senators and U.S. representatives to vote against Hagel’s confirmation.

At Monday’s preliminary session of the CUFI Emergency Summit, which began with a dinner and policy briefing, Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX), CUFI Founder and Chairman Pastor John Hagee, and CUFI board member and President of American Values Gary Bauer presented the organization’s positions—which were conveyed to House and Senate members Tuesday.

“We Jews like to stand before God,” said Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg as he led the ceremonial blessing of the bread at the rapidly convened Emergency Summit dinner.

Hagee laid out CUFI’s objections to an attentive audience, concluding “we pledge that we will stand with Israel when push comes to shove.”

“Well,” extolled Hagee, “push has come to shove!”

Hagee acknowledged Hagel’s record as a Vietnam veteran and senator “with all due respect,” but stressed that the positions the former senator has taken on Iran and Israel make him unsuitable as Secretary of Defense.

“The biggest threat to the security and safety of our front line ally, Israel, is an aggressive Iran in pursuit of nuclear weapons and regional domination… Hagel is not the man for this job: not now and not in the future!” Hagee said.

Hagee suggested Iran “is so excited about Chuck Hagel’s nomination that they have endorsed him.”

“Connect the dots: Iran is a nuclear threat to Israel and America’s candidate is Chuck Hagel. He is not ours!” Hagee said.

“Iran wants to wipe the Jewish people off the face of the earth and their candidate is Chuck Hagel,” the pastor added.

Hagee reminded that Hagel has complained about what the former senator called the “Jewish Lobby.” In 2008, Hagel took a direct shot at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), telling former Middle East negotiator Aaron David Miller in a quote that appeared in Miller’s book, The Much Too Promised Land, that “the Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people” in Washington. He also said, “I’m not an Israeli senator. I’m a United States senator.”

“Well,” said Hagee, “we are the Christians of America and we stand with Israel.”

“We have pledged our loyalty and our love for Israel and the Jewish people,” he said. “We have pledged our solidarity and love for Zion.  We will not be silent.”

CUFI (Christians United for Israel) is the largest American pro-Israel organization. Its membership reflects a wide base of North American evangelical and other pro-Zionist Christian denominations, representing tens of millions of pro-Israel Americans.

Hagel chairs the Atlantic Council think tank, which in December published a column titled “Israel’s Apartheid Policy” as well as a policy paper predicting that Iran “should be viewed as a potential natural partner” for the U.S.

The former senator declined to sign an August 2006 letter asking the European Union to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organization (12 out of 100 senators did not sign), a November 2001 letter asking President George W. Bush not to meet Yasser Arafat until Arafat took steps to end violence against Israel (11 senators did not sign), and an October 2000 letter in support of Israel (four senators did not sign). Hagel did, however, sign a March 2009 letter asking Obama to directly negotiate with Hamas.

Hundreds of pro-Israel Christians descended on

Washington, DC, on Monday to raise heated voices against the confirmation of former Nebraska senator Chuck Hagel as Secretary of Defense.

The Action Fund of Christians United for Israel (CUFI) brought more than 400 Christian leaders, in addition to some rabbis, from 46 different states to Capitol Hill to lobby their U.S. senators and U.S. representatives to vote against Hagel’s confirmation.

At Monday’s preliminary session of the CUFI Emergency Summit, which began with a dinner and policy briefing, Senate Minority Whip John Cornyn (R-TX), CUFI Founder and Chairman Pastor John Hagee, and CUFI board member and President of American Values Gary Bauer presented the organization’s positions—which were conveyed to House and Senate members Tuesday.

We Jews like to stand before God,” said Rabbi Aryeh Scheinberg as he led the ceremonial blessing of the bread at the rapidly convened Emergency Summit dinner.

Hagee laid out CUFI’s objections to an attentive audience, concluding “we pledge that we will stand with Israel when push comes to shove.”

Well,” extolled Hagee, “push has come to shove!”

Hagee acknowledged Hagel’s record as a Vietnam veteran and senator “with all due respect,” but stressed that the positions the former senator has taken on Iran and Israel make him unsuitable as Secretary of Defense.

The biggest threat to the security and safety of our front line ally, Israel, is an aggressive Iran in pursuit of nuclear weapons and regional domination… Hagel is not the man for this job: not now and not in the future!” Hagee said.

Hagee suggested Iran “is so excited about Chuck Hagel’s nomination that they have endorsed him.”

Connect the dots: Iran is a nuclear threat to Israel and America’s candidate is Chuck Hagel. He is not ours!” Hagee said.

Iran wants to wipe the Jewish people off the face of the earth and their candidate is Chuck Hagel,” the pastor added.

Hagee reminded that Hagel has complained about what the former senator called the “Jewish Lobby.” In 2008, Hagel took a direct shot at the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), telling former Middle East negotiator Aaron David Miller in a quote that appeared in Miller’s book, The Much Too Promised Land, that “the Jewish lobby intimidates a lot of people” in Washington. He also said, “I’m not an Israeli senator. I’m a United States senator.”

Well,” said Hagee, “we are the Christians of America and we stand with Israel.”

We have pledged our loyalty and our love for Israel and the Jewish people,” he said. “We have pledged our solidarity and love for Zion.  We will not be silent.”

CUFI (Christians United for Israel) is the largest American pro-Israel organization. Its membership reflects a wide base of North American evangelical and other pro-Zionist Christian denominations, representing tens of millions of pro-Israel Americans.

Hagel chairs the Atlantic Council think tank, which in December published a column titled “Israel’s Apartheid Policy” as well as a policy paper predicting that Iran “should be viewed as a potential natural partner” for the U.S.

The former senator declined to sign an August 2006 letter asking the European Union to declare Hezbollah a terrorist organization (12 out of 100 senators did not sign), a November 2001 letter asking President George W. Bush not to meet Yasser Arafat until Arafat took steps to end violence against Israel (11 senators did not sign), and an October 2000 letter in support of Israel (four senators did not sign). Hagel did, however, sign a March 2009 letter asking Obama to directly negotiate with Hamas.

5 Comments

  • I am so sick & tired of the “crocodile tears” shed by Pastor Hagee and his crowd. Their Christian theology forsees the ultimate conversion of all Jews (necessary for their “salvation”) and their embrace of Jesus as their “savior”. In the future world of these Evangelical Christians the Star of David, the Menorah, images of the Ten Commandments, mezzuzahs, etc. adorning Jewish temples, homes and other Jewish institutions would be replaced by The Cross. We Jews are merely their predecessors who’ve yet to accept a higher state of spiritual enlightenment. I, for one, ain’t buyin’ it.

  • Wake Up America.
    Iran is a threat not only to Israel but also America and Europe. It is America’s vital national interest at stake here – i.e. survival. The mad Mullahs would not hesitate to attack America even if it meant death for millions of ianians. They would also supply such weapons to terrorists. Read “Marked for Death” by Geert Wilders. Geert clearly sets out the historical precident for the kind of Islamic duplicity that Iran is engaging in. This is a must read.

  • Where is AIPAC? Apparently missing two pieces of male anatomy….

  • Where is AIPAC? Apparently missing two pieces of male anatomy.

  • Yoel Nitzarim

    On Thursday, January 31, former Senator Hagel will be vetted as President Obama’s Secretary of Defense nominee. Without a doubt, he will state any and everything that he opines, thinks, believes, and feels the committee wants to hear. In fact, it appears that he has already convinced Senator Schumer that he is the man for the job. Wow, what a turnabout! How could a man of principle, of respectable conviction, of impeccable dignity and honest disposition present a diametrically opposed testimony to men and women of conscience and yes, receive the position that America’s greatest nemesis wishes wholeheartedly for him to commander? America, watch out: your greatest nightmare may be in the making!

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