On March 16, 2003, on the eve of the United States’ invasion of Iraq, Pastor John Hagee took to the pulpit to warn of the coming Antichrist. In his sermon, “The Final Dictator,” Hagee described the Antichrist as a seductive figure with “fierce features.” He will be “a blasphemer and a homosexual,” the pastor announced. Then, Hagee boomed, “There’s a phrase in Scripture used solely to identify the Jewish people. It suggests that this man [the Antichrist] is at least going to be partially Jewish, as was Adolph Hitler, as was Karl Marx.”
This “fierce” gay Jew, according to Hagee, would “slaughter one-third of the Earth’s population” and “make Adolph Hitler look like a choirboy.”
Hear Pastor Hagee’s latest Judeophobic, anti-gay rant in this video, created by Bruce Wilson of Talk2Action.org
Exposed here for the first time, Hagee’s comments identifying the Antichrist as a partly Jewish homosexual arrive in the wake of a furor the pastor provoked by describing the Holocaust as an act of God. Hagee’s chilling sermon about the Holocaust prompted Sen. John McCain to reject the preacher’s support, an unexpected turnabout after McCain spent over a year soliciting his endorsement.
Days after McCain’s rejection, I reported that a key McCain ally, Sen. Joseph Lieberman, planned to deliver the keynote speech at Hagee’s upcoming Christians United For Israel (CUFI) summit. As the story exploded into the mainstream press, pressure mounted on Lieberman to withdraw.
But Lieberman stayed the course, declaring in a prepared statement, “Pastor Hagee has devoted much of his life to fighting anti-Semitism and building bridges between Christians and Jews… I will go to the CUFI Summit in July and speak to the people who have come to Washington from all over our country to express their support of America and Israel, based on our shared eternal values and our shared contemporary challenges in the war against terrorism.”
Lieberman will be joined at CUFI’s conference by Rep. Elliot Engel, a Democratic congressman from New York with a fairly progressive voting record. On Thursday, May 29, I asked Engel’s press secretary, Joseph O’Brien, if Engel still planned to attend Hagee’s gathering in light of his remarks about the Holocaust. O’Brien told me Engel would respond shortly. So far, Engel has said nothing.
Engel is slated to speak on CUFI’s “Middle East Briefing” panel this July. He will be joined on the panel by Republican Rep. Mike Pence, Weekly Standard editor and New York Times columnist Bill Kristol, and Christian right activist Gary Bauer.
Perhaps these Hagee allies could not fathom that a zealous “supporter” of Israel like Hagee could also be an anti-Semite. They may have believed, as conservative Jewish columnist Jeff Jacoby apparently did, that Hagee’s remarks on the Holocaust, as jarring as they were, were theologically correct, and therefore excusable. “As anyone even fleetingly familiar with the Hebrew Bible knows,” Jacoby wrote, “it is not ‘crazy,’ let alone anti-Semitic, to believe that Jewish suffering can be a punishment from God.”
But now that Hagee’s political allies have listened to the preacher’s sermon identifying the Antichrist as a homosexual Jew, how can they still share a stage with him? Is attributing Jewish ancestry to the Man of Sin not anti-Semitism in its most classical form? Are the conspiratorial screeds of Nesta Webster,Henry Ford, and David Duke not replete with passages disturbingly similar to this most recently revealed jeremiad of Hagee and to many of his past sermons?
Hagee’s allies must ask themselves what price they are willing to pay for the backing of his political empire. All of them diminish themselves by standing by side. But those who are Jewish like Lieberman, and who have highlighted their faith to enhance their moral authority, must know now that the price of entering Hagee’s kingdom is their soul.
No more excuses. All elected officials must withdraw from Hagee’s upcoming summit.