Both Zelensky and Netanyahu claim God has chosen them to be victorious
05/13/2024 // Cassie B. // Views

Many politicians appear to have a “god complex,” but two world leaders who are currently involved in wars have openly claimed that God has chosen them and their people to emerge victorious.

First up is Ukrainian President Volodymyr Zelensky, who has said that God is an “ally” of Ukraine in its current conflict with Russia. In a video address that he released on Easter from Saint Sophia Cathedral in Kiev, he accused Russia of “breaking all the commandments.”

“The world sees it, God knows it, and we believe God has a chevron with the Ukrainian flag on his shoulder. So, with such an ally, life will definitely win over death,” he asserted.

It’s an interesting stance for someone who has been cracking down on the Orthodox Church in recent years. The Ukrainian parliament is currently exploring legislation that will shut down the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, which is the biggest Christian Church in the country. This law is currently sitting in parliament, but the Zelensky government has been restricting its activity since the conflict first erupted.

The Ukrainian Orthodox Church has been historically tied to the Russian Orthodox Church, although it renounced it and declared autonomy from it following the Russian invasion. Despite this, Zelensky has repeatedly accused the Ukrainian Orthodox Church of serving as an “agent of Moscow.” The Secret Service of Ukraine has launched a series of criminal cases against priests with the Ukrainian Orthodox Church, sanctioned clerics, seized church property and stripped bishops of Ukrainian citizenship. However, he's happy to bring up God when it serves his goals.

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Netanyahu brings up God in hopes of appealing to religious Israelis and Americans

Not to be outdone, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has invoked the name of God to help sell his war to the Jewish people as well as religious Americans. Netanyahu is known to be secular in his private life but has no problem saying whatever it takes to promote his objectives.

The frequent references made by Netanyahu and other Israeli leaders to biblical figures are also an attempt to legitimize the civilian casualties they are causing in Gaza. Netanyahu said about the attacks in Gaza: "With shared forces, with deep faith in the justice of our cause and in the eternity of Israel, we will realize the prophecy of Isaiah (against Hamas)."

He famously used the biblical narrative of Amalek when inciting IDF soldiers to carry out operations in Gaza. When announcing the second phase of the war in Gaza, he said: "You must remember what Amalek has done to you,” a reference to a nation in the Hebrew Bible whose soldiers ambushed Israelites on their way to the Promised Land. After they overcame the attack, God told them to never forget what happened and carry out an eternal war until no trace of the existence of Amalek was left – and this is widely being interpreted as a call to obliterate Gaza.

His comments were even presented as evidence by the South African legal team pursuing a genocide case against the Jewish State before the International Court of Justice.

Creating the image of a religious war is working well for Netanyahu so far, as Israel is enjoying an overwhelming amount of support from many Americans who identify as religious yet don’t appear to have any problem with the tens of thousands of civilians who have died as a result of Israel’s war and the devastating toll it has taken on the people of Gaza. Cut off from food and essential supplies, those on the ground are reporting unimaginable suffering. It’s hard to imagine anyone’s idea of God approving of what Israel’s actions are doing to the people there right now.

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