General Michael Flynn, Trump’s first (albeit short-lived) National Security Adviser, made a speech, citing the New Testament as saying that the US needed to be “one religion.”
Gen. Flynn: One nation, one religion
On Saturday, Flynn spoke at the “ReAwaken America” conference held at the sanctuary of Cornerstone Church in San Antonio, Texas. The event was run by Pastor John Hagee, founder of Christians United for Israel.
“When Matthew mentioned it in the Bible, he wasn’t talking about the physical ground that he was on. He was talking about something in the distance. If we are going to have one nation under God, which we must, we have to have one religion. One nation under God and one religion under God,” Flynn said.
Michael Flynn tonight: “If we are going to have one nation under God, which we must, we have to have one religion. One nation under God, and one religion under God.” pic.twitter.com/ShGVrsQ9hW
— Ron Filipkowski (@RonFilipkowski) November 13, 2021
Flynn’s speech turned towards religious imagery when he spoke about the indictment of Steve Bannon, labeling the investigation into the January 6 riots an “insurrection crucifixion”.
“This is a crucifixion of our First Amendment, freedom to speak, freedom to peacefully assemble,” Flynn said. “It’s unbelievable.”
ADL: Flynn’s comments “anti-American”
The ADL’s CEO, Jonathan Greenblatt, tweeted, “To suggest that the United States of America, a nation founded on twin bedrocks of pluralism and the freedom to practice any religion, should ‘have one religion’ is anti-American, anti-democratic and downright dangerous.”
Greenblatt associated Flynn’s comments to the January 6 riots.
“We are living in a post-traumatic moment as a nation, reeling from the fallout of the Jan. 6 insurrection,” he said. The ADL “is deeply concerned that rhetoric like Flynn’s — which elevates one religion over others — has the potential to further those rifts and incite political violence.”
“To suggest that the United States of America, a nation founded on twin bedrocks of pluralism and the freedom to practice any religion, should ‘have one religion’ is anti-American, anti-democratic and downright dangerous,” Greenblatt said.
“Michael Flynn’s statements are both unacceptable & anti-American,” the American Jewish Congress said. “Such dangerous rhetoric runs counter to American values and threatens the foundations of our democracy.”
Josh Mandel, a Republican candidate for senator in Ohio, came to Flynn’s defense, tweeting, “We stand with General Flynn.”
Rep Ilhan Omar who is known for her anti-Semitic comments tweeted, “These people hate the US Constitution.”
Fred Guttenberg, who lost his daughter Jaime in the school shooting in Parkland and is now an anti-gun activist, tweeted: “I am assuming when Michael Flynn tells his GQP followers we need to be a nation with “one religion” he probably is not thinking Judaism. And so, it begins. Maybe teaching history about things like race in America and the Holocaust do matter.”
Flynn was a retired US Army General who served as the 25th U.S. National Security Advisor for the first 22 days of the Trump administration. An FBI probe into Flynn led to him pleading guilty to a felony count of “willfully and knowingly” making false statements to the FBI in February 2017. Later revelations about the case against him raised serious questions about the FBI investigation. In November 2020, Flynn was issued a presidential pardon by Trump. The criminal case against Flynn was dropped one month later.