Don’t believe the Zionist Christian hype

001-20110824-palestine-0297

The headline “The Decline of Christian Zionism” was written by an editor and I thought a bit … optimistic—though also hopefully prophetic in the best sense of the term. But my point was more to point at the questionable tactics and rhetoric of America’s undoubtedly largest pro-Israel organization, Christians United for Israel (CUFI), and to place them on the wrong side of history. And now that Jewish Voice for Peace has passed 200,000 Facebook likes, I think I can take at least partial credit for giving them the Ryan-Rodrick-Beiler-Bump:

Christians United for Israel (CUFI), the largest Zionist Christian organization in the U.S., recently sent an email blast celebrating the milestone of “2 million members.” … However, as reported by conservative Christian magazine Charisma, “insiders know such membership consists of nothing but CUFI having your email address. There’s nothing to pay, nothing to sign. And even if you drop out, you’re still counted as a member. Given this, insiders say the number of actual donors is closer to 30,000 to 50,000.”

So I guess CUFI counts me as a “member,” since I get their emails in order to keep tabs on their antics. (I always want to change the wording on their action alerts to Congress, but they don’t allow you to edit their talking points. Typical.) So at best they can only boast 1,999,999 actual supporters. I also happen to know that +972’s own Ami Kaufman has even “liked” CUFI on Facebook, and I’m pretty sure he doesn’t really like them like them.

But the numbers game does not diminish CUFI’s significant impact. They certainly have far more influence than any Palestinian solidarity organization. (Fun fact, though: Jewish Voice for Peace is kicking AIPAC’s ass on Facebook, 199,412 to 93,902. Help JVP get over 200,000—but only if you really like them like them!)