john hagee 88.
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Speaking to a roaring crowd of more than 1,000 members of Christians United for Israel at the Jerusalem Convention Center on Monday night, Pastor John Hagee reaffirmed his organization’s unwavering support for the Jewish state and Jewish people around the world, during the group’s annual Night to Honor Israel.
However, the San Antonio, Texas-based Hagee also warned the crowd about the threat of a nuclear Iran and labeled that country’s president, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, the “Hitler of the Middle East.”
Hagee also slammed the UN-sponsored Goldstone Report on Israel’s Gaza offensive last winter, calling the document a “fallacious report,” and putting the onus for war crimes on Hamas members, whom Hagee said, “hid behind the skirts of women to increase civilian casualties.”
But Hagee also spoke of the “debt of gratitude” Christianity owes to Judaism, telling the crowd that “without Judaism there would be no Christianity.”
To demonstrate that gratitude, Hagee presented Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu, who was in attendance, with a 73-meter-long scroll containing upwards of 200,000 names of Christian supporters of Israel who had pledged their support with a signature.
“What that says,” Hagee said of the scroll, “is that we believe the Jewish people have the right to live in their modern homeland, and that Israel has the same right as any other nation to defend herself from attacks.”
As Netanyahu took the stage to a standing ovation, he returned the pastor’s warm words, telling him and the crowd, “I salute you, the people of Israel salute you, the Jewish people salute you.
“Time after time, through thick and thin, you have stood shoulder-to-shoulder with our state,” Netanyahu said. “Today that friendship is more important than ever, because Israel faces unprecedented challenges to its security.”
And there was no greater challenge, Netanyahu said, than Iran gaining nuclear weapons.
“There is no greater threat to mankind than a radical Islamic regime gaining nuclear weapons,” Netanyahu said. “If Iran develops nuclear weapons, the world would never be the same.
“Remember that for the tyrants in Iran,” Netanyahu continued, “Israel is only the little Satan. Their real target is America.
“As we speak, the United States is leading an international effort to impose sanctions on Iran,” Netanyahu said. “We believe those sanctions must have teeth – and to have teeth, they must bite deep into Iran’s energy sector.
“Simply put,” Netanyahu continued, “they should prevent Iran from
importing gasoline and exporting oil. I believe that such measures
might convince the regime to choose between continuing its weapons
program and ensuring the regime’s future.
“But there must be tough, biting sanctions,” he added, to raucous applause.