NEW YORK (JTA) — The Anti-Defamation League slammed the founder of Christians United for Israel for calling President Obama “anti-Semitic.”
Pastor John Hagee’s “remarks about President Obama were offensive and misplaced,” Abraham Foxman, the ADL’s national director, said in a statement Monday.
“One can agree to disagree about the president and his administration’s record in dealing with Israel, but to apply the label of ‘anti-Semitic’ is a serious denigration and distortion of the term.”
Hagee made his remarks on Sunday at the annual dinner in New York of the Zionist Organization of America.
Citing recent tensions between the Obama administration and the Israeli government, Hagee called Obama “one of the most anti-Semitic presidents in the history of the United States of America.” He also said Obama was “trying to break” the U.S.-Israel relationship.
Foxman countered in his statement: “The president continues to be a staunch ally and friend of Israel and friend of the Jewish community. And while we and members of the Jewish community have not always seen eye-to-eye with this administration on certain issues involving the Jewish State, the fact remains that this administration has continued the strong and unwavering alliance with Israel.”
Hagee was airborne and unavailable for comment Monday, a spokesman said.
Also appearing at the ZOA event was Sen. Ted Cruz (R-Texas), who is considering a run for the presidency in 2016. Cruz slammed the Obama administration’s handling of nuclear negotiations with Iran, warning that Tehran was on the path to acquiring a nuclear weapon.
He predicted Congress would act soon to enhance Iran sanctions. The enthusiastic crowd then urged him, “Run, Ted, Run.”