Why does World Council of Churches support freedom for terrorists who murdered innocent Jews?

The following post was originally published by This Ongoing War, a blog edited by Arnold and Frimet Roth

A question to the politically engaged Geneva-based leadership of the World Council of Churches:

You very publicly called in mid-April, via an official WCC statement of solidarity, for expressions of Christian sympathy for what you termed (this is a direct quote) “some 5000 Palestinian men, women and children, languishing in Israeli jails“. When you did that, did you understand that solidarity for that cause means being solid with people who are this week whipping up the masses and calling for acts of calculated Palestinian Arab murder directed at ordinary Israelis?

We pointed out to you some time ago [“17-Apr-14: Christian solidarity with unrepentant murderers: where’s the outrage?“] that many of those “men, women and children” for whom you express your compassion are self-confessed murderers. Many more of them are proudly unrepentant terrorists. This did not stop your chief executive, the Reverend Doctor Olav Fykse Tveit, from calling on the 500 million worshipers belonging to WCC churches around the world “to pray for, visit, and tend to the needs of all [those] prisoners, no matter the reason for their detention.

No matter the reason for their detention is exactly the expression he used. A careful and well-prepared clerical gentleman, he surely understood and meant what those words, in their plain sense, mean. So we can surmise that, for the WCC, the key thing is not that they are murderers of innocent Jews but that they are ‘languishing‘. And so Mr Tveit’s address called upon the Christian faithful to

remember Palestinian prisoners through prayers and acts of solidarity that restore to them their freedom with justice and dignity

We wrote at the time that the justice and dignity denied – permanently and irretrievably – to victims of Palestinian Arab savagery like our own 15-year-old daughter Malki have failed over the past decade to rise to the level at which the WCC sees fit to speak out.

Malki Roth

Malki Roth


It’s difficult for us to not notice that the WCC leadership has been consistently silent, and remains silent, about the victimhood of Israeli children, women and men.

Tveit and the learned elders of the WCC are, of course, not alone in their appalling moral blindness. 

Hamas calls on armed wing to kill soldiers and settlers| Elhanan Miller | The Times of Israel | June 10, 2014, 12:48 pm | Hamas has called on members of its armed wing in the West Bank to target Israeli soldiers and civilians in a bid to ease the plight of its prisoners in Israeli jails, a party spokesman said on Monday. “We call on the men of resistance in the West Bank, primarily the Al-Qassam Brigades, to fulfill their duty in protecting the prisoners on hunger strike by targeting the occupation soldiers and its settlers,” Hamas spokesman Hussam Badran wrote on his Facebook page Monday. “The occupation must pay a high price in the blood of its soldiers and settlers until it is persuaded to solve the issue of prisoners on hunger strike. This is everyone’s task, on the individual and organizational levels,” he wrote… [Times of Israel]

This Husam Badran happens to be someone about whom we know a thing or two.


Husam Badran depicted on a Hamas website

In “3-Feb-13: Little noticed, unjustly-released terrorists are in charge of the ongoing jihad attacks against Israelis“, we quoted the British newspaper, The Guardian, certainly no great friend of Israeli policies, reporting on Badran’s part in the ‘Gilad Shalit for Terrorists’ transaction of October 2011:

Fresh lilies are regularly laid at a monument by the Tel Aviv Dolphinarium bearing witness to an evening in 2001 when 21 Israeli teenagers were killed while queuing outside a nightclub. Another 132 were injured in the attack by Saeed Hotari, a young Palestinian suicide bomber affiliated with Hamas. But last week flowers arrived more in protest than in sorrow. Husam Badran, the former head of Hamas’s military wing in the West Bank and instigator of the Dolphinarium attack, is expected to be among 477 Palestinian prisoners released on Tuesday in a deal to free Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. A further 550 will be freed within two months. “It’s surreal. It’s beyond belief,” said one young mother angrily as she looked at the monument. “I may be the only one against it, but no good deal sees the release of 1,000 killers. People say Netanyahu showed courage in agreeing to set them free, but I say he has given in to terrorism.” [The Guardian, October 16, 2011]

Badran, a monstrous man, walked free in the Gilad Shalit transaction in 2011. He has been living since then in Qatar where he re-established a career doing what he knows best – plotting against the lives of Israelis, and encouraging others to execute. (A terrorist cell connected to him was penetrated by the Israeli security establishment in February 2013 with numerous subsequent arrests – see our post.) Our guess is that Badran, the convicted and unjustly freed murderer, must be thrilled to bits by the moral support given to him and his co-conspirators by the WCC via its call for “freedom with justice and dignity… [for] all [those] prisoners, no matter the reason for their detention.”

If you’re new to our angry criticism of the World Council of Churches, then please know that as the parents of an innocent child murdered by those prisoners, we have made sincere efforts to engage the appropriate people at WCC Geneva in discussion. We felt a mission to explain to them the very bad things they are doing and to hear their self-justifications, if they can offer any. So far, they have not.

But it’s actually worse than that. As we wrote here [“6-Jun-14: Fear and loathing at the World Council of Churches“], the WCC (self-described as “the broadest and most inclusive among the many organized expressions of the modern ecumenical movement, a movement whose goal is Christian unity… breaking down barriers between people, seeking justice and peace“) says via its Director of Communications that it’s unwilling to get into a discussion. Here’s the full text of his letter to us dated June 5, 2014:

Dear Mr. Roth, Yes, I believe we would have nothing further to say.  Best wishes to you and your family. Mark Beach, WCC Director of Communication

So take it from this non-Christian, non-Moslem couple: there’s something seriously wrong with a major global-facing church roof-body that wishes freedom, justice and dignity for convicted murderers and rolls down the shutters when a family devastated by the actions of those very murderers engages them in serious discussion.

We hope some of our church-going readers will see fit to pass this post around. If you’re not sure, the names and websites of all the WCC member churches are here: “23-May-14: On the dignity of murderers and their victims: An appeal to Christian friends“. 

We’ll sign off with a word to the WCC management team sitting there in Geneva:  and to come back and openly discuss these very serious life-and-death issues with us.


Logo for WCC “peace pilgrimage”

Israel launches operation ‘Pillar of Defense’ to cripple Gaza terrorist infrastructure

After a period of four days which saw more than 120 rockets fired by Gaza terrorists at Israeli cities, causing injuries and endangering the lives of hundreds of thousands of citizens, the IDF  has launched Operation ‘Pilar of Defense‘ with the aim of hampering the terrorist organizations’ rocket launching and weapons build up capabilities.”

IDF Spokesperson told The Algemeiner that “the operation began about an hour ago with a pin-point strike on Hamas terror chief al-Jabari”, adding that “since then…we have targeted about 20 different sites in the Gaza strip focusing specifically in long-range rocket capabilities that have been developed in Gaza.”

We’ll keep you posted on the Guardian’s coverage of the operation as it develops.  

You can follow The Muqata who’s live blogging on the operation.  Our Twitter feed for updates is here.

Hamas’s immutable malice towards Jews that the Guardian won’t report

Trying to convince Zionists’ critics that Israel’s conflict with her neighbors is not about land, borders, refugees or the status of Jerusalem, but, rather about the immutable malice, and annihilationist antisemitism, of Islamist terrorist groups’ which seek the Jewish state’s destruction is often a fool’s errand.

Many in the West are convinced that such a suggestion – that the malice of a group, people or nation can be endemic and not dictated by the action of the target of such enmity – denotes a form of racism on behalf of those making the accusations.

Such folks are therefore not going to be convinced by even the most irrefutable evidence that there are some in the world who don’t share their liberal assumptions and good will.

This dynamic – what Richard Landes refers to as Liberal Cognitive Egocentricsm – is certainly the most serious intellectual challenge Israel faces in seeking Western support to fight back hard against movements such as Hamas.

As such, I was wondering how Israel’s Western presumably liberal critics (yet alone their not so liberal critics) would respond to Hamas’s recent boasting about the effectiveness of their attacks against “Zionists” over the years, in the context of a celebration in Gaza marking their 24th anniversary.

From the Hamas website:

Al Qassam website- Gaza- Ezzedeen Al Qassam Brigades (E.Q.B), the armed wing of the Islamic resistance movement Hamas released on Wednesday morning a new military stats on the occasion of the 24th anniversary of Hamas founding.

The brigades (E.Q.B) said in an official stat released by its Information Office that it has mourned 1848 martyrs from its militants during the past 24 years, since Hamas foundation.

E.Q.B said in its military statement that it has targeted the Zionist occupation entity with 11093 homemade projectiles and mortars, while it has managed to kill 1365 Zionist soldiers and injuring 6411 others since the foundation of the Hamas movement.

The brigades added that total number of the Jihadist operations conducted by its militants since the establishment  of the movement reached to 1117, 87 were martyrdom operations, however, the number of the Zionist soldiers who were killed and injured by the hands of the Qassam Brigades mentioned  in the stat as (7776).

Relating the abduction operations, the brigades announced that it has implemented 24 abduction attempts against Zionist occupation soldiers since the inception of the movement in 1987.

The brigades said that it has succeeded in releasing 1050 male and female prisoners from Zionist jails in an honorable exchange deal with the Zionist occupation forces, most were from long term and life sentences . 

Here’s the graphic which accompanied their story.


I blog every day about the Guardian’s breathtaking moral indifference in the face of such egregious examples of modern antisemitism, such blind hatred towards “Zionists”, and I’m certainly not the most eloquent writer who ever put pen to paper.

But, just perhaps, my one asset as a pro-Israel commentator is that I’m still not morally numb to such a profound injustice, and am still outraged at such an excruciating and piercing lack of empathy towards my people and my nation.

While the Guardian often rhetorically distinguishes between Jewish victims of terrorist attacks who live outside or within pre-June 1967 borders (“Settlers vs. Israelis), our enemies, as the Hamas headline above indicates, are not burdened by such moral categories.   

We’re all just “Zionists”, and, they want us dead.

What the Guardian won’t report: Hamas website celebrates death of Israeli teen, Daniel Viflic

The website of Al-Qassam Brigades, the military wing of Hamas, posted an article on the recent death of Israeli teen Daniel Viflic, who died as the result of brain injuries sustained after Hamas terrorists fired an anti-tank missile at a school bus he was on.

Here’s an exact translation of the story, from Arabic into English (with clarifications in parenthesis), provided by a friend of CiF Watch who is a professional translator: 

With pictures – Death of a Zionist soldier in the “Kfar Sa’ad” Operation (carried out) by Al-Qassam

 April 18, 2011

Al-Qassam exclusive

On the evening of Sunday, 17 April, one of the wounded in the Kfar Sa’ad convoy died, after a Zionist convoy was targeted by the Al-Qassam Brigades as it was passing on a military road connecting military positions weeks ago.

The Zionist “Ha’aretz” newspaper mentioned that the Zionist killed (i.e. dead) met his death (sic!) weeks ago east of the city of Gaza, after the convoy which was transporting him was targeted by the Al-Qassam Brigades.

The newspaper mentioned that the killed (i.e. dead) was a Zionist conscript who was treated in intensive care in the Soroka hospital in the occupied city of B’ir Al-Sab’ (Beer-Sheba) after a major deterioration in his medical condition.

(The newspaper) added that the dead “Daniel Fiflich” (sic, there is no “v” in Arabic) was buried in the cemetery of the village of Noham (sic) last night. He died of the serious wounds which he received ten days ago when Al-Qassam (Brigades) targeted a Zionist convoy in the occupied Western Naqb (Negev).

Al-Qassam carried out the operation

The Brigades of the shahid ‘Izz Al-Din Al-Qassam announced Thursday (April 7) evening that they targeted a Zionist convoy near the Kfar Sa’ad mughtasaba (this is an Arabic term for Israeli settlements, both inside and outside the Green Line. It comes from the word “rape”, and is meant to say that the place is being raped, or taken from its original inhabitants by force), east of Gaza.

The (Al-Qassam) Brigades announced in a military communiqué that its mujahids (jihad fighters) targeted a convoy of the occupation exactly at 3:15 pm, near the Zionist Kfar Sa’ad mughtasaba (see above), east of Gaza. This (targeting) led to it (i.e. the convoy) being hit directly. The occupation admitted that two of the Zionists were wounded at the time of the targeting (I know it sounds idiotic, but this is how it translates into English), one of them serious (wounds), and he died last night.

The Brigades added that “we claim responsibility for this Jihad operation, and we stress that this is a primary response for the crimes of the occupation and that more responses are on the way Allah willing, and its Jihad-waging Brigades will remain the spearhead in waging resistance against the occupation, and that it will respond twice as much if it (the occupation) will dare to commit any new stupid acts.”

It (the Al-Qassam Brigades) pointed out that this heroic operation comes as a response to the ongoing and repetitious crimes of the occupation and its increasing taghawwuls (probably a typo, and he meant “tawaghghul”, which means “incursions”) against our people in Al-Quds (Jerusalem), the (West) Bank and the (Gaza) Strip, the latest of which was the murdering of the Qassam leaders Isma’il and ‘Abdallah Labad and Muhammad Al-Daya.

The words above the first two pictures (Below): “Pictures of the killed (i.e. dead) Zionist”

The words above the rest of the pictures: “Pictures of the targeting of the Zionist convoy by Al-Qassam (Brigades)

What the Guardian won’t report: Video shows Hamas firing rockets from civilian areas

This footage further confirms IDF claims that Hamas fires from civilian areas thereby endangering Palestinian residents and using them as human shields. Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades, the Hamas military wing, released footage of operatives firing rockets from densely civilian population areas. At 0:14 a rocket can be seen being fired in front of a school and a mosque.

Is Hamas’ “Charm” Offensive?

Both pieces below were inspired by an article on Voice of the Copts.



If you see Ismail Hanniyeh with a grin from ear to ear

And you have to lie down for a while,

And if Fathi Hamad looks contented and glad

And you feel that you’ve missed it by miles;

If al-Qassam Brigades pitch up at parades

Eyes a-twinkle without any guile,

Don’t be worried or sad

You’re not poorly or mad –


Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Hanniyeh begins charm offensive on Gaza's children.

Continue reading

Thought experiment: Imagine if the Deputy Editor of the Guardian hosted a forum at a pro-Jihad, pro-Hamas event

H/T Harry’s Place

Suppose there’s a group which is known to be a pro-Hamas propaganda operation. And, suppose the leader of this group is the former deputy secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain, a signatory of a pro-Jihad, pro-extremism, pro-terrorism document which called for:

Jihad and resistance against the occupation until the liberation of all Palestine”.

Suppose, further, that the leader of this group has such a prolific record of promoting hate and extremism that the co-director of a counter-extremism think tank said that “the man is a fanatic.”

Wouldn’t progressives be shocked and appalled to learn that the Deputy Editor of the Guardian – the world’s leading liberal voice – hosted such an event?

Close your eyes for a second.

Now open them:

The Guardian's Michael White on left

Here’s The Guardian’s Deputy Editor, Michael White, hosting an event (with Sir Gerald Kaufman, MP) by MEMODaud Abdullah‘s organization. Abdullah, deputy secretary-general of the Muslim Council of Britain (MCB), attended a conference of Islamic extremists in Istanbul - an assembly for jihad. Delegates at the February conference included representatives of Hamas and theological and political supporters of some of the worst forms of Sunni extremism.

Abdullah’s deputy at MEMO is Ibrahim Hewitt, chairman of Interpal, another British charity that serves Hamas.

On MEMO’s pages you will find work such as the vile accusation of dual loyalty against the Jewish British ambassador to Israel, support for blood libel charges, and multiple essays by Abdel Bari Atwan, the journalist who has said he would “dance in Trafalgar Square” if Israel were annihilated by Iran in a nuclear strike.

Of course, White is no stranger to extreme anti-Israel bias.  During a discussion on BBC Radio London’s Breakfast Show, concerning the physical vulnerability of political leaders, he said:

“In Israel they murder each other a great deal. The Israeli Defense Forces murder people because they don’t like their political style and what they’ve got to say and it only means that people more extreme come in and take their place.”

Regarding the killing of Mahmoud al-Mabhouh (allegedly by Israel), a senior Hamas military commander and one of the founders of the Izz ad-Din al-Qassam Brigades – who was prolific in smuggling deadly weapons into Gaza – White said this:

“I’m not ‘one of those’ liberals who relentlessly denigrates Israel, but murdering Mahmoud al-Mabhouh was a crime.”

White then added:

“The trouble is with killing [such terrorists], you never know when you’ve just killed Nelson Mandela. Apartheid South Africa was wise in that respect.”

(Right, you just “never know” when leaders of Hamas and Hezbollah are going to lay down their arms, cozy up, and reconcile with Jewish citizens of the “Zionist entity,” and join the Arab equivalent of Peace Now.)

Still, White’s attendance at – indeed, endorsement of – an event by an openly Jihadist organization makes such comments seem mild by comparison.

So, to sum up:  White is “not one of those liberals who relentlessly denigrates Israel”, but sees nothing inappropriate about legitimizing Jihadists who openly seek that state’s annihilation and routinely engage in explicit classic anti-Semitism.

As Harry’s Place noted:

“If the Guardian and Kaufman are not aware of [MEMO’s] record, they are incompetent. If instead they are [aware], their decision to attend a MEMO event is nauseating”

That deafening silence you’re currently hearing is the outrage expressed by the progressive community to the Guardian’s tacit support for such a reactionary, and extremist, movement.