Secretary of State Mike Pompeo said it’s possible that President Donald Trump may exist to “save the Jewish people” from what an interviewer called “the Iranian menace.”
The statement came during an interview with the Christian Broadcasting Networkpublished Thursday. During the interview, CBN’s Middle East bureau chief Chris Mitchell referenced the Jewish celebration of Purim, in which adherents commemorate the Jewish people being saved from genocide in Persia, which is modern day Iran.
Mitchell compares Trump to Queen Esther, who saved the Jews according to The Old Testament story.
“Could it be that President Trump right now has been sort of raised for such a time as this, just like Queen Esther, to help save the Jewish people from an Iranian menace?”
“As a Christian, I certainly believe that’s possible,” Pompeo answered.
The U.S. has placed sanctions on Iran for what the administration has claimed is their funding of violent and destabilizing activities throughout the Middle East. The U.S. placed more sanctions on Iran on Friday just as Pompeo said the U.S. will continue to curb the influence of Iran and Hezbollah.
The secretary of state is overseas for a Middle East swing, having visited Israel and Lebanon. On Thursday, he visited the Western Wall with Israel Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The visit is seen as a show of support for Israel.
The president tweeted on Thursday that “it is time” the U.S. recognize Israel’s sovereignty over Golan Heights, a disputed piece of land that Israel captured from Syria in 1967. Trump argued the decision, which was welcomed by Netanyahu, is critical for Israel’s security. However, critics say it could further inflame Middle East tensions