Christian Zionist pay for Iranian Jews move to Israel
About 40 Jews who left Iran in secret arrived in Israel yesterday — one of the largest such defections — and got a Christmas present of $10,000 per person from U.S. evangelicals.The so called Christian Zionist are a much larger voting block in America than Jews. It is a factor that many Muslims and especially Arabs do not comprehend. It explains a good deal about the support for Israel it the US. Some of these groups believe a return of Jews to Israel is necessary for some biblical prophesy. Others believe that God gave Israel to the Jews and that should be the end of the argument over who owns it.
The number of Iranian-Jewish emigrants to Israel more than tripled to 200 in 2007, according to officials from the Jewish Agency for Israel, the quasi-governmental organization that promotes immigration to Israel.
A Jewish Agency spokesman credited the increase to a stipend program financed by donations to the Christian Zionist group International Fellowship of Christians and Jews (IFCJ).
"The money is a major consideration" to come to Israel, said Michael Jankelowitz, a spokesman for the agency. "These people come with the clothes on their back and their suitcase. Iranian money has no value."
Family members of the Iranian emigrants screamed in delight and threw candy at the newcomers as they emerged into the reception hall at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv after a long bureaucratic procedure, the Associated Press reported.
Officials from the Jewish Agency refused to divulge details of the immigrants' journey, such as the airline that brought them to Israel or stopover countries, and kept identities secret for fear of endangering Jews still in Iran.
The $1.4 million donated in 2007 by IFCJ for Iranian-Jewish immigration is the latest example of the growing involvement of evangelicals in pro-Israel philanthropy that was once the exclusive turf of Diaspora Jewry.
Numbering 28,000, the Jewish community in Iran is the largest in any Muslim country and enjoys a comfortable standard of living and generally good relations with fellow Iranians. But they are forbidden from visiting Israel, and the possessions left behind in Iran are subject to confiscation.