Mike Flynn Calls Nancy Pelosi a 'Modern-Day Pontius Pilate'
21:46 GMT 13.01.2022 (Updated: 21:47 GMT 13.01.2022)
© AP Photo / Patrick SemanskyMichael Flynn, President Donald Trump's former national security adviser, departs a federal courthouse after a hearing, Monday, June 24, 2019, in Washington.
© AP Photo / Patrick Semansky
On Wednesday, retired Lt. General Michael Flynn called US Speaker of the House Nancy Pelosi a “modern-day Pontius Pilate,” (the Roman governor who purportedly sentenced Jesus Christ to death around the year 30 CE), over the supposed persecution of supporters of former US President Donald Trump.
In an interview on Lindell TV, Flynn was critical of Democrats and the House Select Committee regarding the 1/6 attack. He called the committee “crazy,” and suggested that their investigation was an "insurrection persecution by Nancy Pelosi."
The US House Select Committee to Investigate the January 6th Attack on the United States Capitol is composed of seven Democratic and two Republican Congress members. Pelosi is not a member of the Committee.
Flynn’s disdain for Pelosi saw him claim that she was a "modern-day Pontius Pilate, you know, of this era."
He complained that the US is “persecuting people who are expressing” dissatisfaction and distrust in the government. He clarified, however, that he was not referring to those who are currently facing prosecution over their involvement in the deadly 1/6 Capitol attack.
23 December 2021, 11:31 GMT
Who was Pontius Pilate?
Historical records concerning the Roman politician Pontius Pilate are murky at best. His first name is unknown and some historians believe he first rose in the ranks of Roman bureaucracy through the military due to his name being a reference to ‘Pilatus’, meaning ‘skilled with the javelin.’ This historical assertion is not universally accepted, however, and is considered by many experts in the field as a hypothesis only.
Little is known of his life before his apparent appointment by the second Roman Emperor Tiberius as governor of the Roman province of Judea around the year 26 CE. The post was considered low prestige, and little of his supposed ten-year stint has survived the historical record.
Pilate is thought to be most famous for purportedly sentencing the Christian religious prophet Jesus Christ to death, via crucifixion, around the year 30 CE. There are no direct historical records concerning Pilate’s motivation for sentencing the man to death.
His governorship was dogged by consistent civil disturbance between the ruling Romans and the local, predominantly Jewish, population. Crucifixion was a common tool used in the Roman provinces and there is said to have been little oversight over Pilate during much of his reign.
Later depictions of Pilate, particularly those in the Christian Bible, are varied. Some portray him as coerced into the execution of Jesus, while others portray him as a villainous and brutal ruler.
Flynn’s Religious Bias
Flynn is likely referencing villainous portrayals of Pilate in his comparison to Pelosi, harkening to the persecution that early Christians faced in the Roman Empire.
He has a history of portraying political opponents through a lens of religious Christian dogma.
Flynn has claimed, "Biblically speaking, at the age of 13, Jesus Christ went into the temple and he ransacked it. They would call him a domestic terrorist today."
His reference confuses two distinct sections of Christian biblical myth. According to the Christian Bible, Jesus Christ did visit the temple of Jerusalem as a teenager, but it wasn’t until days before his death, purportedly while he was in his 30s, that he “ransacked it.”
Flynn has also claimed that the United States should have “one religion,” meaning Christianity, and suggesting that all other religions, including Islam and Judaism, be permitted to function, but with vastly reduced visibility.
"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 at a conference in Texas.
Flynn’s sentiments are in stark contrast to the First Amendment of the US Constitution, which prohibits the government from, “respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof.”