Questions like this simply have to be asked in light of the organization’s ongoing attacks against Israel and its Jewish defenders. The WCC’s attacks do not promote peace, but do demonstrate that the organization is willing, for whatever reason, to blame the Jewish victims of jihadist violence and propaganda in the Middle East.
Just recently the organization issued a statement condemning Israel for defending its borders against a Hamas-organized invasion from the Gaza Strip. The statement, which does not mention Hamas by name, makes no mention of the antisemitic chants uttered by the rioters, nor does it mention the Molotov cocktails thrown at Israeli soldiers or the Palestinian gunfire that took place at the confrontation. Instead, the statement condemned Israel for depriving the rioters “the denial of the right to nonviolent protest on the border” as if a riot is an example of “nonviolent protest.”
It gets crazier. The statement calls on Israel to among other things “guarantee human rights” and “the freedom of speech.” This is simply an inversion of reality. It is Hamas and the Palestinian Authority that should be condemned for violating the human rights and freedom of speech of the Palestinian people, particularly in the Gaza Strip. In August 2017, Amnesty International condemned both the PA and Hamas for rounding up journalists and shutting down websites critical of their governance.
Magdalena Mughrabi, Deputy Middle East and North Africa Director at Amnesty International declared that, “By rounding up journalists and shutting down opposition websites the Palestinian authorities in the West Bank and the Gaza Strip appear to be using police state tactics to silence critical media and arbitrarily block people’s access to information.”
It is these organizations — Hamas and the PA — that are sending rioters to the security fence between Israel and the Gaza Strip. But the WCC condemns Israel for violating freedom of speech.
As in the past, the organization seems hell-bent on maintaining its habit of getting it wrong—drastically wrong—when asked to choose between submitting to and opposing violent political movements that seek to deprive people of their dignity and freedom. If Jesus died to make men free, the WCC lives to make Christian elites safe and comfortable, even if that means betraying Christ on the Cross.
A huge betrayal took place during the Cold War when the WCC was manipulated by the Soviet Union, a reality dramatized in an episode broadcast during season five of FX’s The Americans. When the spy couple’s cover risks being blown by a local pastor, the KGB intervenes by having the WCC offer him a job working in Argentina just to get him out of the picture.
Sure, it’s drama, but it is rooted in fact. The Soviets did use the WCC as a tool to undermine Western democracies. For example, prior to the WCC’s 1983 General Assembly in Vancouver, Canada, the Soviets instructed a group of women affiliated with the Christian Peace Conference (a Soviet front group) to work with delegates from the Russian Orthodox Church to oppose a resolution condemning the Russian invasion of Afghanistan.
A report issued by the U.S. State Department in 1987 stated that “The Russian Orthodox and CPC representatives argued successfully that if the General Assembly voted to condemn the invasion, the East European women and Soviet Clergy would not be permitted to attend future WCC meetings. For similar reasons the WCC declined to take note of or act on messages from persecuted East European Christians at the same gathering.”
In sum, the WCC abandoned its mission to speak the truth to the proponents of an expansionist and hateful ideology in the 20th century—the Soviet Union.
It’s doing the same thing again in the 21st century.
This time for Hamas.
Dexter Van Zile is Christian Media Analyst for the Committee for Accuracy in Middle East Reporting in America (CAMERA). His opinions are his own.