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Speaking in private about Secretary of State John Kerry's efforts to continue Israeli-Palestinian peace negotiations, the Israeli Defense Minister described Kerry as someone with "misplaced obsession and messianic fervor."

Messianic, which means "marked by idealism and an aggressive crusading spirit," does not suggest a sense of realism associated with effective diplomacy. The minister later apologized for his remarks.

Messianic comes from Messiah, a word used in the Jewish and Christian scriptures to refer to a God-sent savior. It comes from the Hebrew and Aramaic words that mean "anointed" (i.e. "chosen by or as if by divine election.").

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March 29, 2015
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