Simon Cowell gives $150K to soldiers
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Simon Cowell gives $150K to soldiers

Media mogul and 'X Factor' judge attends IDF gala, even agrees to sing in exchange for host's $1-million gift

Debra writes for the JTA, and is a former features writer for The Times of Israel.

Media mogul Simon Cowell (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)
Media mogul Simon Cowell (photo credit: Wikimedia Commons)

For media mogul and celebrity judge Simon Cowell, the Israel Defense Forces, it seems, has the X factor.

Cowell, best known for his acid-tongued judgments on “American Idol” and “The X Factor,” attended a fundraiser for Israeli soldiers on Wednesday and shelled out $150,000 of his own money for the cause. The event was hosted by billionaire Haim Saban, the Israeli creator of “Power Rangers.”

According to the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces — a New York City-headquartered nonprofit that raises millions for the well-being of Israeli men and women in uniform — Cowell was on hand for the Los Angeles event earlier this week, which was also attended by Grammy-Award winning singer Lionel Richie, who crooned for the crowd.

The event brought in a total of $20 million, including a single $4.5-million donation from the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews, according to the Jewish daily Forward.

And according to other media reports, Cowell was coaxed into singing the theme song from the “Power Rangers” by Saban himself, who offered to donate $1 million if the ornery judge joined in a duet of “Go Go Power Rangers” for the delighted crowd. Cowell, reportedly, complied.

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