Evangelicals who White-wash terrorism

In recent years, the actions, words and theology of Christian Zionists have been scrutinised and criticised by academics, theologians and conspiracy theorists alike. Such people are also likely to appreciate Ben White’s article ‘The Other Evangelicals’ from April 2008.

Ben White has written for various Christian newspapers. White is typically critical of Israel, sympathetic towards Islamist terrorism, and openly claims to understand Jew-hatred. It is no coincidence that he is so keen to write about other evangelicals like himself.

White commends Christian evangelicals who dispute Christian Zionism such as Stephen Sizer, Don Wagner, Tony Campolo, Gary Burge, Colin Chapman, and Evangelicals for Middle East Understanding. To this list we may wish to add Sabeel, Amos Trust, Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT), Anthony McRoy and David Rushworth-Smith.

By criticising Israel and her supporters without taking into account Israel’s security concerns, all of the above contribute to a distorted view of the Middle East conflict which is just as one-sided as that of the Christian Zionists. The backlash from many Christian denominations and evangelical leaders against Christian Zionism must be seen in the wider context of the propaganda war being fought over Israel.

What is also disturbing is how these Christian leaders, directly or otherwise, contribute to ‘non-violent resistance’ against Israel.

Some of the Other Evangelicals have also supported terrorists, with Dr Anthony McRoy praising Hizbollah suicide bombings, Norman Kember of CPT funding the bail of an Al Qaida leader, Sabeel endorsing Hamas, and Stephen Sizer defending intifada against Israel on Iranian TV.

Whilst many of the Other Evangelicals may give lip service to the idea that they condemn violence from both Palestinians as well as Israelis, the reality is that they rarely if ever speak out directly against terrorist groups or terrorist incidents. The Other Evangelicals have been silent about rocket attacks on southern Israel over the last 8 years, and tend to be vitriolic in their criticisms of the Jewish state.

Recent statements regarding Gaza have confirmed the suspicion of many that, for all their talk of “peace”, the Other Evangelicals willingly contribute ideological ammunition to the jihadists.

Stephen Sizer and Friends of Sabeel actively promote ‘non-violent resistance,’ which primarily seems to involve racist sanctions and boycotts against Israeli Jews.

Interestingly, Ben White sees violent resistance and non-violent resistance as ‘two sides of the same coin’. For White, both forms of ‘resistance’ are necessary and useful, being part of the campaign to bring down the Jewish state. White writes:

“Popular struggle, like violent resistance, is not an end in and of itself; it is a method, a strategy. It is the end goal, decolonization and liberation from occupation and Zionist apartheid, that is ferociously opposed by the self-declared international guardians of the “peace process” and their friends in the Palestinian elite. The rest is just smoke and mirrors.”

Ben White and the Other Evangelicals are also guilty of playing down legitimate concerns of the Israeli public. Just last week, Stephen Sizer compared the Hamas rockets fired into southern Israel with ‘slingshots’. Similarly, Ben White is a proponent of the ‘Fluffy Hezbollah’ theory (quite similar to the ‘Fluffy Hamas’ theory), describing Hezbollah as a ‘nationalist resistance movement’ (which nation?), and claiming that the view of Hezbollah as ‘a nasty fundamentalist body’ is a myth. Furthermore, White advocates a ‘one-state solution’, refusing to take seriously the concerns that this will lead to a bloodbath.

Whilst Ben White’s writings are reproduced by Hezbollah TV, Stephen Sizer’s writings are propagated by VHO, Israel Shamir, Aaargh!, Stormfront, the National Front, and various other neo-Nazi and Holocaust-denying groups. It is clear that Ben White and the Other Evangelicals are key contributors to the current global wave of antisemitism, and the creeping Gallowayisation of some parts of Christendom.

Having repeatedly ridiculed the Christian Zionists for their theology, perhaps it’s time for the Other Evangelicals to analyse their own contributions to peace in the Middle East.


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7 responses to “Evangelicals who White-wash terrorism

  1. I sent this to the Church Times yesterday. I reproduce it here as they may not print it. . .
    The piece from Ben White in the January 16th edition of Church Times was unhelpful.

    The Muddle Middle East situation has been the cause of more Christian polarisation than any other geo-political issue in our time.
    It seems that for many if a person is “pro-Israel” then they are perceived as being “anti-Palestinian” and vice versa.
    We could, like Mr White, cast allegations and counter allegations regarding the actions of the various groups.
    We could, like Mr White, attempt to demonise one side or the other.
    We could, like Mr White, call for boycotts of Israeli goods, services, academics because of perceived abuses; or we could call for boycotts of Arab goods &c for the same reasons (or almost any other Country – China? Saudi Arabia? Qatar? Venezuela? The United States? The list could become unworkably long)
    However the truth is that no-one in this has clean hands. There are actions and views on both sides which are indefensible. The militant Arab factions such as the Hamas and the Hizbullah have as stated aims the desire to destroy the State of Israel and both groups seek the deaths of all Jewish people around the world. The militant Israeli factions such as the Kach Party (the only Party to be banned in Israel) seek a “Jews only” State.
    As a Follower of the Jewish Messiah, the Prince of Peace, I believe it to be my calling to seek reconciliation. This is borne out of my reading of 2 Corinthians – ours is the ministry of reconciliation.
    CMJ has been working to this end in the area since almost a Century before the establishment of the present State, and this is still our driving mandate. Therefore CMJ run or are involved with 3 schools in Jerusalem – the Anglican International School, which is a multi-national school serving all Communities and having students from more than a dozen nationalities enrolled; Makor HaTikvah, a Messianic Jewish school; and the Sunshine School in the east of Jerusalem, educating Arab children in a Christian context.
    Mr White’s views are well known and well documented and I am not going to counter them.
    My purpose in writing this is to encourage Church Times readers not to become involved in the “blame-counter claim” thing.
    We are to pray for the peace of Jerusalem, not to exacerbate conflict. Our Messiah and King told us that peace makers are the happy ones, not those who seek to delegitimize entire people groups.
    While Mr White and those on his “side” are of course entitled to express their views, it is not helpful to print those views in a Christian publication.
    In a Christian publication we should rather be reading articles which encourage those reading them to be more Christ-like.
    Thanking you for your time, I am and will remain
    Yours in Yeshua our Messiah and King
    Adrian Glasspole

  2. You’ve recently noted that Stephen S. has been subtly distancing himself of late from his earlier antisemitism. I perceive that he and his critique of Christian Zionism are being enlisted in the culture wars here in the States, since dismissing Christian Zionists as biblical literalists via seminars and conferences is one way of undermining the Religious Right. However, given the near hopelessness of forging a theologically liberal interfaith partnership with a fellow who runs with Holocaust deniers and other antisemites, the squeeze is being put on him to cool it. That is my perception.

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  4. VoP

    Great site, similar to my goals of eradicating Evangelical Terrorism

  5. Dear gentlemen ,I hope you have enough time to reconsider the concept of “terrorism”.Unfortunately the cunning Zionist planners could penetrate this concept to be applied to those helpless ,oppressed ,forgotten non Eropeans who fight for their simplest human rights.We are humen beings ,you humans! my family was forced to flee our village in 1948 when The Zionist heavily armed groups occupied it ,this is a fact ,when will you believe it? The major mistake of our fathers and grandfathers was : they accepted to live peacefully along centuries with the Eastern jews ;the poor and helpless jews during the Islamic reign .They couldn’t imagine that those who were sometimes nicknamed ” the children of the dead “will cooperate with the English Evangelist colonialism to drive them out of their lands.We do not shout to have some of your donations,just stop your support to the zionist occupiers,Hamas and Hizbullah are freedom fighters.They appreciate the heros of the American revolution as well as the secret resistance of the French against the Nazist.So why to deny their struggle .

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  7. Mike N

    You have to read this tool’s web posting reply. Richard Silverstein..

    English Pro-Israel Cyberbullying Alive and Well

    He wails about free speech right after justifying your banning from public computers for doing something much less severe than the hard left “boycott Israel” movement does on a regular basis.
    He says he’s all for free speech but you should also be banned from using public computers to enter blog entries. (of course because he dislikes your opinions)

    Here was my reply to this “nebisha” self appointed morality king –

    Amazing how you change course and use Wiseman’s old quote against him regarding free speech.. however, you wail like a little 12 year old girl when someone criticizes you and threaten to sue on the drop of a dime… you’re such an pathetic hypocrite it’s hilarious.
    Then you finish off with how he’s a big boy and his being prevented from using public facilities bcs of his opinion differing with an Anglican priest who used his authority to quash him is hilarious.

    He has every right to notify sponsors of and places he’s speaking at… and they have every right to decide if they then want to ignore this information and let him speak anyway.. however, but in your world it’s ok to banish him from public facilities because he doesn’t hold your opinion.

    What’s even more hilarious is how your blind flock suck down the multitude of ridiculous hypocrisy you dish out in just one postg and hum along… meanwhile you filter comments, ban anyone who disagrees and then tar and feather as well, while beating your chest, diminutive as it is… all the while writing in your post about free speech – right after justifying banning someone from public facilities for doing nothing different and MUCH less severe than the boycott Israel movement does on a regular basis.

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