Hagel sketched out

Too much SNL love for Israel?

Unaired Saturday Night Live skit parodies senators’ full-throated support for Israel during the Hagel confirmation hearing

Haviv Rettig Gur is The Times of Israel's senior analyst.

SNL's unaired Chuck Hagel skit (photo credit: NBC screenshot)
SNL's unaired Chuck Hagel skit (photo credit: NBC screenshot)

NEW YORK — In an unaired skit cut from its Saturday night broadcast, NBC’s popular sketch comedy show Saturday Night Live took aim at the full-throated support for Israel expressed by some senators during the Senate Armed Services Committee confirmation hearing for Chuck Hagel.

The video shows the dress rehearsal from Saturday afternoon. The skit was cut from the final show aired that night.

The skit begins with a parodied South Carolina Senator Lindsey Graham quoting a 1998 statement by Hagel that “the United States will always have an extremely close relationship with the state of Israel, but that’s not to say that in every single instance our interests and those of Israel will be identical.”

Graham expresses dismay at the words, and wonders at great length if he’s “slipped into some parallel dimension.”

SNL's unaired Chuck Hagel skit (photo credit: NBC screenshot)
SNL’s unaired Chuck Hagel skit (photo credit: NBC screenshot)

Graham’s fellow South Carolina Republican Tim Scott then notes emotionally, barely able to contain tears, that he “just loves that little country so much.” He claims Israel has the best food, most beautiful women and tallest mountain in the world, among other subjective or downright inaccurate attributes.

The competition reaches its debauched crescendo when a parodied Senator John McCain asks Hagel if he would commit a sex act with a donkey if Israel’s survival was at stake.

The mock hearing quickly degenerates into full-blown competition over support for Israel and a discussion among senators of the technical definitions of various sex acts. Hagel is scarcely able to respond throughout the skit, and at its end sneaks out of the hearing unnoticed.

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