HomeStuff2016 . 04That time Ted Cruz said, “If you will not stand with Israel and the Jews, then I will not stand with you,” and walked out?

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That time Ted Cruz said, “If you will not stand with Israel and the Jews, then I will not stand with you,” and walked out?

American Politics

The headline on The Right Scoop read: “THIS IS AWESOME! Ted Cruz walks off stage after being BOOED for supporting Israel.” And the take-away:

Boom! That’s what I call a leader.

AllahPundit was, unsurprisingly, less effusive: “Video: Ted Cruz booed for defending Israel at conference of Middle East Christians.” But AP did add some interesting color:

Interesting backstory: The conference was a minor political headache for Cruz by the time he came to the podium thanks to this Free Beacon story yesterday noting that a few of the other speakers were known to back Hezbollah and Bashar Assad, a.k.a. our new allies against ISIS. (The Beacon’s headline: “Cruz Headlines Conference Featuring Hezbollah Supporters.”) If his audience had sat quietly during his passages on Israel, the Beacon would probably be pressing him today to explain why he deigned to speak at an event with people like that sharing the dais. How pro-Israel can he really be? Instead, the crowd started booing him — Lebanon’s ambassador to the U.S. supposedly left the room in anger — and he not only stood his ground, he pressed the point. That’s brilliant political signaling, not just in terms of demonstrating his commitment to Israel but in showing his conservative base that he refuses to retreat under political pressure. We already knew that too from last year’s “defund” effort and the ensuing shutdown but it’s a point that can’t be repeated enough. If you’re a tea partier yearning for someone to support who won’t budge under withering fire from the left, the media, and from people like this, Cruz has done everything he can in his 20 months in the Senate to say “I’m that guy” . . .

The Free Beacon has a new story today about Cruz and the conference, by the way. Headline: “Ted Cruz Stands Up to ‘Hatred and Bigotry’ at Conference of Middle Eastern Christians.” Consider this narrative changed.

AP’s links, my emphasis.

Cruz’s take, in hindsight:

When I spoke in strong support of Israel and the Jewish people, who are being persecuted and murdered by the same vicious terrorists who are also slaughtering Christians, many Christians in the audience applauded. But, sadly, a vocal and angry minority of attendees at the conference tried to shout down my expression of solidarity with Israel . . .

I told the attendees that those who hate Israel also hate America, that those who hate Jews also hate Christians, and that anyone who hates Israel and the Jewish people is not following the teachings of Christ.

These statements were met with angry boos. I went on to tell the crowd that Christians in the Middle East have no better friend than Israel. That Christians can practice their faith free of persecution in Israel. And that ISIS, al Qaeda, Hamas, and Hezbollah, along with their state sponsors in Syria and Iran, are all part of the same cancer, murdering Christians and Jews alike. Hate is hate, and murder is murder.

I came to this event tonight to help shine a light on the tragic persecution and slaughter of Christians by ISIS and Islamic radicals throughout the Middle East. American leaders have been far too silent as to this horrific evil.

But bigotry and hatred have no place in this discussion. Anti-Semitism is a corrosive evil, and it reared its ugly head tonight.

So, what happened?

The complete video and transcript follow.

Ted Cruz Speech, In Defense of Christians (IDC) Summit, September 11, 2014

Cruz

Good evening. Today we are gathered at a time of extraordinary challenge. Tonight we are all united in defense of Christians.

Applause.

Tonight we are all united in defense of Jews.

Applause.

Tonight we are all united in defense of people of good faith who are standing together against those who would persecute and murder those who dare disagree with their religious teachings.

Applause.

Religious bigotry is a cancer with many manifestations. ISIS, Al Qaeda, Hezbollah, Hamas —

Applause.

and their state sponsors like Syria and Iran —

Applause.

are all engaged in a vicious genocidal campaign to destroy religious minorities in the Middle East.

Sometimes we are told not to loop these groups together, that we have to understand their so-called nuances and differences. But we shouldn’t try to parse different manifestations of evil that are on a murderous rampage through the region. Hate is hate and murder is murder.

Our purpose here tonight is to highlight a terrible injustice, a humanitarian crisis. Christians are being systematically exterminated.

In 1948, Jews throughout the Middle East faced murder and extermination and fled to the nation of Israel. And today Christians have no greater ally than the Jewish state.

Scattered applause, argument.

Let me say this. Those who hate Israel hate America.

Argument, “No!”

And those who hate Jews hate Christians.

Argument, “No!”

Cruz folds up his speech.

And if this room will not recognize that, then my heart weeps that the men and women here will not stand in solidarity with Jews and Christians alike who are persecuted by radicals who seek to murder them.

Applause.

If you hate the Jewish people, you are not reflecting the teachings of Christ.

Scattered applause, argument.

And the very same people who persecute and murder Christians right now, who crucify Christians, who behead children, are the very same people who target and murder Jews for their faith, for the same reason.

Scattered applause, argument.

I will say this. I am saddened —

Argument, “Enough!”

IDC

Please, respect, respect. Respect for dialog.

Argument.

Respect, please. We are in America.

Cruz

I will say this. I am saddened to see that some here, not everyone, but some here are so consumed with hate —

Argument.

that you cannot address your brother. I will say this.

Argument, “Enough!”

If you will not stand with Israel and the Jews, then I will not stand with you. Thank you, and God bless you.

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