Paul Criticized by Pro-Israel Group for ‘Promised Land’ Comments

by Andrew Johnson

An official with a top pro-Israel Christian group condemned Rand Paul’s recent comments he made about some Christians’ willingness to go war to defend “the promised land.” 

The Kentucky senator made the remarks to BuzzFeed in an article published earlier Friday; Christians United for Israel reached out to the website to respond, though the objection came anonymously.

In the initial BuzzFeed article, Paul said, “I think some within the Christian community are such great defenders of the promised land and the chosen people that they think war is always the answer, maybe even preemptive war.”

“And I think it’s hard to square the idea of a preemptive war and, to me, that overeagerness [to go to] war, with Christianity,” he added. In the Senate, Paul has been a vocal proponent of a less hawkish foreign policy.

An unnamed official with CUFI criticized Paul’s comments, saying that “it hurts us to see a leader we respect — and a Christian one at that — engage in such slanders of Israel’s Christian supporters.” The official emphasized that the group considers war a last resort and has never supported more than economic sanctions against threats to Israel.

A senior Paul adviser responded that the CUFI official took the senator’s comments too personally, noting that Paul never referred to or hinted at any group in particular. “He simply is asking all Christians to join him in reexamining our foreign policy and in working to make war a last resort, a goal we should all share,” the adviser explained.

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