Surgeon General C. Everett Koop, who has been criticized by many of his fellow evangelical Christians for his positions on AIDS, has struck back in an interview in the June issue of Charisma & Christian Life. The 72-year-old Koop, who will leave his federal post Oct. 1, challenged positions taken by James Dobson, president of Focus on the Family, and the Rev. D. James Kennedy, a prominent television preacher. Koop also disputed assertions made by author Gene Antonio in his book "The AIDS Cover-Up," such as the contentions that AIDS could be spread by kissing and mosquito bites. Commenting on the same statements made by Dobson and Kennedy, Koop said, "The Christian activity in reference to AIDS of both D. James Kennedy and Jim Dobson is reprehensible. The first time that Kennedy ever made a statement about AIDS, I saw it on television. It was so terrible, so homophobic, so pure Antonio that I wrote him a letter." He said he wrote to Kennedy, who is pastor of the Coral Ridge Presbyterian Church in Fort Lauderdale, Fla., "and told him how far off base he was in his comments about AIDS." The surgeon general said he had offered to give Kennedy a briefing about AIDS, but that he never got an answer to that letter. Then, he said, "Kennedy wrote me a letter full of this trash and rubbish out of Antonio's book. I responded to it thoroughly, paragraph by paragraph. I never heard a word from him." Koop recalled that he and Dobson had made some films on the AIDS epidemic and that the Focus on the Family president "was with me completely." But later, the surgeon general said, "I don't know what happened to him. He changed his mind, and last August in his paper he attacked me for two pages as leading people down the garden path. But again his arguments were full of holes. I just cannot believe the poor scholarship of so many Christians."