05/14/2008 10:10 pm ET | Updated May 25, 2011

Hagee in 2003: God Raised Up Bush to "Crush Saddam Hussein"

In this video from March 2003, just before the start of the Iraq War, televangelist and Armageddon lobbyist John Hagee maintained that the impending war with Iraq would fulfill a divine purpose: "I believe God has raised George Bush up for this time in history to crush Saddam Hussein." He then goes on to opine that Bush became president because a Jewish neighborhood in Florida voted for him, and that the United States would "prevail in this war against Iraq":

Hagee made these comments -- suggesting perhaps, that the chosen people helped fulfill God's plan? -- on televangelist Benny Hinn's program, and three years later he was back on the airwaves drumming up support for war with Iran, and promising God's punishment on America for not defending Israel from Iran's nuclear ambitions. See, it's Hagee's own "God damn America" moment, only he's had a lot of these moments. Here's Hagee promising that God would punish America with more terrorist attacks if it pressures Israel to make land concessions to the Palestinians:

These are not isolated instances of Hagee going off the rails while preaching in a moment of intense emotionalism. These are the essential tenets of Hagee's theology, laid out over many years in many books and sermons. In my book,