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The Second Coming of John Hagee to Denver

September 13, 2010


“I’ll buy you a diamond ring my friend if it makes you feel alright
I’ll get you anything my friend if it makes you feel alright
‘Cause I don’t care too much for money, money can’t buy me love” … or respect or culture


It’s an open debate as to whether or not money can or cannot buy love, despite the Beatles’ lyrics. But if can’t buy love, for Larry Mizel it seems, money can buy many other things that compensate for it quite nicely, – fame, fortune, political influence and the – most importantly – the remolding of his image from something akin to a small time developer, wheeler-dealer type from Colorado’s `Silverado’ Bank days  to a philanthropist and `humanist’ of national, if not international stature. Heck of an image reconstruction,


John Hagee with Christian devotee and then presidential candidate John McCain before the 2008 election


With a little help from his friends here in Denver, and possessing undeniable shrewdness and savvy, Larry Mizel has come a long way from his boyhood days in Tulsa Oklahoma. While politically `flexible’ – he’s as friendly with Democratic Colorado gubernatorial candidate John Hickenlooper as he is with John Hagee -Mizel’s politics have been consistent in what could accurately be described as a neo conservative tradition: supporting deregulation of much of the economy and tax breaks for the rich on domestic policy and a hard line on US foreign policy, supporting the war on terrorism in all its aspects and Israel’s special relationship with the USA. He has supported the US invasions of Iraq and Afghanistan to no one’s great surprise.

The Mizel-Hagee relationship is more than personal.

It is what could be called `a strategic alliance’ between those elements of the Jewish Community – not inconsiderable – who put support for Israel, right or wrong, pretty much above all else, with the ultra-right wing of the political spectrum in this country. It also includes some of the more zealous neo-conservatives of the far right, militarists hoping for more U.S. wars abroad to feed the military industries. This alliance has no small amount of support from elements of the Democratic Party as well – especially those tied to the Democratic Leadership Conference and it has always had an element of bipartisanship about it.

But at its heart and soul it is driven by the likes of Larry Mizel and John Hagee and if anything, the relationship between a `moderate’ Republican (Mizel is not a Tea Party type to my understanding) and a wacko Christian fundamentalist organizing for a world-ending world war as a prelude to the second coming of Christ… but more on that below

A savvy local `Mizel Watcher’  adds another dimension to the relationship:

Mizel  is seeking publicity to gain recognition from 50 million Hagee cult followers which, in a way, will firm his position with Israeli officials. Help business efforts. This will gain him traction to do business in Israel and expand his lobby influence in the United States on whatever issue he supports.

This is not unreasonable speculation.

Recently Mizel has bought into the Israel Discount Bank, Israel’s third largest as well as bidding for a license to develop Israeli natural gas in the Mediterranean through Israel’s Natural Gas Authority,  despite the fact that ` so far as is known, MDC (Mizel’s holding company) has no experience in the oil and gas exploration business, it has $1.78 billion in cash reserves’. Mizel is also the chairman of the board of directors of the Simon Wiesenthal Center in Los Angeles that is building a `museum of [in]tolerance atop the Mamilla Cemetery in Jerusalem. The project as sparked much opposition from Palestinians. It is possible that Mizel is also using this project as a springboard for other business enterprises.


Larry Mizel and John Hagee

John Hagee, the right wing (even that is too moderate a description of him) Texas based Christian evangelist who calls for war with Iran and uses bible quotes from the Book of Revelations to defend his support for Israel and profound racism – I do think that is the right word – against Arabs and Moslems, is returning to Denver


Larry Mizel


thanks to his connection to a local real estate developer and influential figure in Colorado’s Republican Party.

Hagee’s coming at the invitation of Denver based developer and MDC Holdings (a real estate development company in the main) C.E.O. Larry Mizel to address to address the Allied Jewish Federation of Colorado’s annual Men’s Event from 6-9 pm on November 21 at the Wings Over The Rockies Air and Space Museum at Lowry. According to its own press release,

`Federation’s Men’s Event is reputed to be the largest annual gathering of Jewish men west of the Mississippi.  This year the Federation hopes to attract 1,400+ people to the gathering.  The event raises approximately $1 million annually in support of the Federation’s mission to build and sustain Jewish life in Colorado, Israel, and around the world.  The Men’s Event is once again being generously underwritten by the Mizel Family Foundations.  Additional support is provided by Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck, LLP.’

This year the Federation event hopes to attrach 1,400+ people

Although the event is two months away, already there are rumblings in Denver’s Jewish Community at Mizel’s choice of speakers. Hard to tell if it will amount to much at this point though but there are indications that Hagee’s appearance is too much for growing elements of Colorado’s Jewish Community. For example, there have been so many complaints about the Hagee invitation that the Allied Jewish Federation (AJF) has – through its executive director – Doug Seserman – issued MENS EVENT FAQ on Hagee. These complaints have come from many quarters – a gay Jewish academic, a member of West Denver’s Orthodox Community,  several prominent members of Denver’s Community, a retired influential rabbi, a former civil rights organizer among them. And that possibly is just the tip of the iceberg. Younger members of Denver’s Jewish Community, those under the age of 30, seem especially offended. Tim Gill, founder and major contributor to the Gill Foundation personally lobbied the AJF to cancel the Hagee appearance.

As Seserman noted in response to one letter of protest.. that Hagee is `only our keynote speaker’ and that `his monumental advocacy and fundraising in support of Israel are unrivaled’. Perhaps, but they are giving Hagee the floor to an audience of what could be 1400 people.

Many of these people – it has been said – are planning to boycott the dinner in protest, although the boycott has not yet reached any formal stage. Still, this negative reaction, some two months before the dinner has forced the Allied Jewish Federation to mount a public relations campaign and engage in what is more and more active damage control effort.

Undeterred by this uncharacteristic yet pronounced protest within Denver’s Jewish Community, and its aversion to the Hagee invitation, the Allied Jewish Federation has no plans for cancelling Hagee’s appearance. To the contrary, they defend the visit by arguing that the Federation is `not honoring’ Hagee. As Seserman noted in response to one letter of protest.. that Hage is `only our keynote speaker’ and that `his monumental advocacy and fundraising in support of Israel are unrivaled’. Hagee’s spokespeople claim that Christians United For Israel chapters throughout the United States have more than 40 events a month in support of Israel. Perhaps, but, in return,  the Allied Jewish Federation  giving Hagee the floor to an audience of what could be 1400 people in Denver and through this relationship a national audience.

Hagee’s message has been more or less the same for some time now.

Hagee and `Christians United’ have long been against any compromise settlement with the Palestinians that would lead to an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza, is an ardent supporter of and contributor to the growth of settlements in the Occupied Territories and in Israel is linked to the right wing and


Redyavik (Iceland) Mayor Opens Gay Pride Parade In Drag...


far right wing political parties, including the ruling Likud Party. He has shown not one ounce of sympathy for the Palestinians and has been virulently hostile to their situation and fate. Furthermore he is an outspoken and open advocate of a US-Israeli pre-emptive military strike against Iran. According to the Allied Jewish Federation `Frequently Asked Questions’ sheet (see link above), Hagee’s organization has contributed more than $60 million to Israel since 2005 – as I recall, much of that goes to settlement building.

For all his support for Israel, Mizel’s gesture of inviting Hagee to speak at a Jewish luncheon would be akin to inviting David Duke to keynote a Louisiana NAACP conference. Among Hagee’s other views, well known and in accordance with the highest starndards of Christian fundamentalist rightwing  bigotry include:

  • He might believe in God, but not in global warming; he considers the Kyoto Protocol as a conspiracy to manipulate the US economy
  • He denounces abortion and has, as a result of its practices, stopped giving money to Israel’s Hadassah Medical Center for performing the operation
  • He has a special place in his heart for gays. He describes Hurricane Katrina as `God’s wrath’ for having a gay pride parade at which, he claimed `that was going to reach a level of sexuality never demonstrated before in any of the other gay pride parades’. Likewise he considers the Harry Potter series as little more than `contemporary witchcraft’
  • Interviewed on Terry Gross’s `Open Air’ in 2006, he asserted that all Muslims are programmed to kill and we can thus never negotiate with any of them.
  • Even as he cheerleads for more settlements in the Occupied Territories, Hagee has no compunction about spewing anti-Semitic poison. In the introduction to one of his books, `Jerusalem Countdown: A Prelude To War’, Hagee essentially `blames the victim’, arguing that Jews deserved their suffering throughout the centuries essentially because they refused to become Christians. So is the logic here is, `yes, he’s a holocaust denier, but he’s our holocaust denier and it’s ok to deny the holocaust as long as he supports us on Israel/settlements?
  • In a like manner, he takes this analogy further, arguing that the Nazi holocaust was `the will of God’ in judgment against his `rebellious people’ and in like manner, he has gone on record as making excuses for the Nazi concentration camps.

Rapturous Hagee Needs A War, Not Just Any War But a World War..

Hagee’s support for Israel has its sources in his understanding of `the rapture’ – the supposed return of Jesus Christ to bring peace and harmony to the earth – at least to his followers after an apocalyptic war. Hagee is faced with a problem of no small proportions: how to create the conditions for the end of the world, ie. triggering World War III, so as to usher in the new millennium of peace and harmony.

But the man has a plan: he has written about it and shared it with the world. Here is how it goes:

  • Hagee interprets the bible to predict that Russia (have to throw in a bit of anti-communism here even if it is outdated) and the `Islamic countries’ will invade Israel and be destroyed by God.
  • This will cause the `anti-Christ’, which Hagee now exposes to the world as being `the head of the European Union’ to a confrontation over Israel between China and the West (as according to the script, Russia and the Islamic countries have been eliminated in Round One).
  • In Jerusalem Countdown, he argues that a confrontation with Iran is a necessary precondition for Armageddon (which will mean the death of most Jews, in his eyes) and the Second Coming of Christ. Hagee insists that the United States must join Israel in a preemptive military strike against Iran to fulfill God’s plan for both Israel and the West. And he is, along with his allies in AIPAC lobbying for such a cause in the US Congress, not without some support.
  • All this will produce the cataclysm necessary to awaken Christ from his heavenly slumber, take notice of us earthlings and come down to save that which remains…but only the faithful will be so blessed.
  • There is room only for a tiny percentage of the world’s Jews – 12,000 for each of the 12 original Jewish tribes or 144,000 (thanks RK) – of the world’s current Jewish population of 12 million. Further it is only those Jews who `repent’ and accept Jesus Christ who will be eligible for Noah’s Ark II in the sky. So about 12 million would perish, making Hagee’s rapture something of a double holocaust for Jews, who can’t win in any event.


Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp near Potsdam, Germany. Here the gasses used at Auschwitz to kill Jews at Auschwitz were experimented with on French miners and Soviet POWS. But Hagee while not completely denying the Holocaust, has argued that it is exaggerated.


All the above – and more – is well known to anyone wanting to know. And although I’m not particularly good at predictions, mine is that as the criticisms of Israel’s intransigence in the Occupied Territories continue, that the likes of Larry Mizel will grow ever more closer to and dependent upon Hagee and his ilk, drawing Jewish communities throughout the United States into an even closer and more uncomfortable embrace.

With friends like these….?

Not kosher, Larry, but typical

Not kosher, Larry, but typical. Someone who knows Mizel well,  summed him up recently  in a letter:

“Larry wanted class to go with his money, but had to settle for corn pone. For instance, he thinks `Beethoven’s Fifth’ is a bottle of whiskey.”

Larry wanted class to go with his money, but had to settle for corn pone. For instance, he thinks `Beethoven’s Fifth’ is a bottle of whiskey

As Mizel subsidizes the luncheons he thinks that he can invite whomever he wants, and probably has a point


Faith Bible Chapel delegation in Ariel, Jewish Settlement, West Bank, Palestine in 2006


here.  As his tastes gravitate toward the political gutter – inviting a Christian fundamentalist bigot to address a Jewish men’s luncheon — only weeks after having connived to give Newt Gingrich (through The CELL) to Denver – is about right.

But already, two months prior to the speaking engagement rumblings and dissatisfaction are beginning to surface from both Jewish and Christian quarters here in Denver.

  • Several orthodox rabbis have made it known to their congregations that they will not attend.
  • Some of the younger, more culturally liberal reform oriented Jews are offended by Hagee’s message. One of them joked about buying a table for the dinner and inviting  friends to all attend in drag as a sign of cultural protest
  • Others within Denver’s Jewish Community, have long been ill at ease with the solid political cooperation that the nation’s Zionist leaders have long made with Christian fundamentalists – making a united front in support of Israel, justifying and defending the Israeli settlements policy in the Occupied Territories, and pushing hard for the annual and massive US military aid appropriations to Israel.
  • Some Denver Christians are also offended by Hagee’s visit. A number of them are insisting that Hagee represents them as little as Mizel represents Denver Jews.

Will it amount to more than a hill of beans? Dunno. But Denver’s Jewish Community deserves better than to have to swallow John Hagee’s particular brand of drivel for dinner, and act like it’s kosher.


– Some links to articles in the Jewish Press on John Hagee – click here (note – he has gotten a fair amount of play in `The Forward’, one of the more interesting Jewish newspapers)

– blog entry was slightly updated on September 22, 2010

14 Comments leave one →
  1. September 13, 2010 2:59 pm

    It seems to me that the most demeaning thing a sincere Jew can do is to give assent to the twisted Biblical propaganda of so called Pastor Hagee. For in the end, literally a Jew is doomed for not having accepted Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior. For Hagee, Armageddon and Rapture may be the ultimate day off for his nutty brand of Christian but it will be the ultimate off day for anyone still waiting for the Messiah who in Hagee’s view will come on his war horse to elimnate all those who refuse to recognize that he was just kidding about love and tolerance and justice at his earlier incarnation.

  2. Ed Augden permalink
    September 19, 2010 8:21 pm

    Is Larry Mizel really the latest incarnation of Quisling?

  3. October 4, 2010 9:58 am

    t’s such a great site. fanciful, extraordinarily stimulating!!!


    Opony Mozgowe


  4. lela kay permalink
    October 4, 2010 6:27 pm

    you are a piece of shit. I wonder who’s going to wack you – don’t you????

    • October 4, 2010 6:34 pm

      note… thought of deleting this…but I have gotten a number of such emails and want to keep one up as an example of how people respond to this particular blog entry. have put the others in the trash where this one too belongs. rjp

  5. November 9, 2010 2:24 am

    This is laid out extremely very and you are able to see from the top quality, that it has been researched and thought out very extremely. I’ve bookmarked it and am going to forward it to others that i know will likely be really interested within the info. My father is in this industry, he’ll love the way you laid out the data, I’ve sent him your hyperlink. I have alos posted a permanent link on my website for other to locate this. It’s challenging for any person to disagree with this, the information is fantastically put together.

    • November 9, 2010 3:20 pm

      It’s complicated business. I’m just trying to get a handle on it. rjp

  6. May 16, 2013 3:49 pm

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