The Tennessee Star: CJV Defends Tennessee U.S. Rep. Andy Ogles’ ‘Death to Hamas’ Comment
March 2, 2024

by Kaitlin Housler in The Tennessee Star

The Coalition for Jewish Values (CJV) came to U.S. Representative Andy Ogles’ (R-TN-05) defense over comments he issued last month in response to an activist who pressed him on the situation unfolding in the Middle East, specifically between Israeli and Hamas forces in Gaza.

“Given that Rep. Ogles stated unequivocally that he was speaking about Hamas, a terror organization that has both declared and evidenced its intent to massacre all Jews, his is the only morally correct position,” CJV Midwestern Regional President Rabbi Ze’ev Smason said in a statement. “It is deplorable that organizations and even left-wing media outlets have deliberately falsified his words in order to malign and slander him.”

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“Whether through ignorance or malice, they are advocating for those who seek genocide against the Jewish People, and we commend Rep. Ogles both for his moral compass and his backbone when confronted with their virulent hate,” Smason added.

Footage shared on social media last month shows Ogles being pressed by the activist while walking through a corridor in the U.S. Capitol.

During the exchange, Ogles said, “Let’s be clear – Hamas raped and murdered babies,” to which the activist replied, “They did not, that’s fake news.”

“There’s no evidence of that,” another activist is heard stating before Ogles said, “I’ve seen the footage, and you haven’t,” referencing the 45-minute long screening of footage showing Hamas’ October 7 attack on Israel, which was shown to lawmakers in November 2023, just one month after the attack.

In response, the activist said, “I’ve seen the footage of shredded children’s bodies. That’s my taxpayer dollars going to bomb those kids.”

Ogles then said, “So I think we should kill them all, if it makes you feel better. Everybody in Hamas…Hamas and Palestinians have been attacking Israel for 20 years, and it’s time to pay the piper…Death to Hamas.”

The Tennessee congressman has since doubled down on his remarks.

In a statement, Ogles said he was “clearly referencing Hamas terrorists during the exchange” and stands by his “Death to Hamas” remark.

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