A recent photograph posted by the former US ambassador to the UN has stirred online controversy as she was accompanied by a Texas pastor accused of making pro-Nazi remarks in the past.
Michael and I are blessed to be back in Israel with our friends @PastorJohnHagee and Diana Hagee. pic.twitter.com/XOHq5DnWzh— Nikki Haley (@NikkiHaley) June 11, 2021
The photograph was taken in Israel during a visit by Nikki Haley, a republican politician who is considered one of the strongest supporters of former US President Donald Trump, featuring well-known Pastor John Hagee.
Haley met Hagee during a Shabbat dinner held in Israel, one that was also attended by the former US ambassador to Israel David Friedman.
We were thrilled to enjoy a Shabbat dinner with Ambassador Haley and Ambassador Friedman. We are honored to call such upstanding advocates for Israel and the Jewish people our dear friends. ???? pic.twitter.com/jIoRkxGRxA— Christians United for Israel (@CUFI) June 12, 2021
Meet Pastor John Hagee. He preaches that Hitler was a “hunter” sent by God to kill the disobedient Jews who "ignored" Herzl.”— Ariel Gold אריאל ? ☮️?✡️ (@ArielElyseGold) June 12, 2021
Israel welcomes him into the county but deported me for supporting Palestinian rights ??? https://t.co/MtnFTvrjXt
Even though John Hagee is quite famous for his support to Israel, having established a Christian Zionist organization named Christians United for Israel, he has faced multiple accusations of making anti-Jewish remarks over the past few years. These accusations have been highlighted by many online commentators who attacked Haley's celebration of the photo with him, saying that it goes against supporting the Jewish people.
In a 1990s sermon, Hagee claimed that "God had sent Adolf Hitler to punish the Jews of Europe who didn't follow Theodor Herzl's plan of migrating to historic Palestine to create the state of Israel."
This pastor John Hagee is an antisemitic bastard that doesn't actually care about Jews. https://t.co/ELAsYrM9Ct https://t.co/owQ9CwFjDM pic.twitter.com/w5zI1QcvGT— ?א⃝ ? ✡︎ הִירשׁ טְבֶרְיָה (@hirsh_tveria) June 12, 2021
Nikki, this man thinks Hitler was sent by God to kill Jews. What is wrong with you???— Aliza, An American Jew For Palestinian Liberation (@LeezaLizeIT) June 12, 2021
Hagee had also added that Hitler was "a hunter sent by God to shepherd the Jewish people into Palestine" to re-establish the state of Israel.
Over the years and despite Hagee's strong support of Israel, several American politicians had distanced themselves from him in response to his statements, which had been largely deemed antisemitic, including the former Republican US senator John McCain who ran for office in 2008, rejecting Hagee's endorsement.