Christian Right kidnappers
Nicole Colson reports on the accusations against missionaries who were arrested after trying to take Haitian children out of the country–and the media’s tolerant attitude.
February 17, 2010
“HELP US…That’s the message I would give to Mr. Obama and the State Department. Start helping us.”
You might think that was the plea of a Haitian citizen following the devastating earthquake in January. But no, those words came from Carla Thompson–one of a group of 10 U.S. missionaries arrested by Haitian authorities on January 29, accused of trying to kidnap 33 Haitian children and take them across the border into the Dominican Republic.
At least 22 of the supposed “orphans” were found to have at least one parent still alive in Haiti.
The 10 missionaries are mostly from a Baptist church based in Idaho. Following the earthquake, the group apparently set out with a trailer full of children’s clothes and a vow to help Haiti’s orphans “find healing, hope, joy and new life in Christ.” The group’s creepy leader, Laura Silsby, told reporters: “God wanted us to come here to help children, we are convinced of that. Our hearts were in the right place.”
But Silsby at least knew that the missionaries were flouting the law. In a letter to the United Nations, Anne-Christine d’Adesky, a writer and human rights activist, said she met with Silsby on January 24 in a hotel in the Dominican Republic. Silsby allegedly told d’Adesky that her authorization to pick up Haitian orphans and bring them into the Dominican Republic came from an unnamed Dominican official.
“I informed her that this would be regarded as illegal, even with some ‘Dominican’ minister authorizing, since the children are Haitian,” d’Adesky wrote, adding that she directed Silsby to UN agencies dealing with orphans and adoptions in the country.
D’Adesky told the Wall Street Journal that Silsby responded: “We have been sent by the Lord to rescue these children, and if it’s in the Lord’s plan, we will be successful.”
Silsby’s personal motives may not have been so noble. Back home in Idaho, she faces a string of lawsuits for allegedly failing to pay employees of her Web site shopping business. MSNBC noted that “the $358,000 house at which she founded her nonprofit religious group, New Life Children’s Refuge, was foreclosed upon in December.” Which raises the question of whether Silsby thought she might have profited from arranging for Haitian children to be adopted by people in the U.S.
The other people with Silsby on her “mission,” including at least two teenagers, may have been victims of their own arrogance and stupidity–but that doesn’t excuse their crime. On the contrary, there’s something stomach-turning about using a tragedy like the earthquake in Haiti to promote religious beliefs. (Right-wing Christians aren’t the only ones guilty–the Church of Scientology flew in volunteers after the quake to “minister” to Haitians.)
In the case of Silsby’s group, the Eastside Baptist Church Web site laid out the missionaries’ plans for a “Haitian Orphan Rescue Mission.” According to the itinerary for January 23, the group would “Drive bus from Santo Domingo into Port-au-Prince, Haiti, and gather 100 orphans from the streets and collapsed orphanages, then return to the D.R.”
The group apparently planned to take the children to a hotel in the Dominican Republic, where they would live until a permanent orphanage was constructed. According to the New York Times, the Web site said the group would “strive” to “provide opportunities for adoption through partnership with New Life Adoption Foundation,” which subsidizes adoptions “for loving Christian parents who would otherwise not be able to afford to adopt.”
There’s no evidence that the missionaries were in any way prepared to care for the children they planned to “gather” from the streets–it’s unknown whether any spoke Haitian Kreyol or had any familiarity with the country’s culture or legal system.
Even in the best of times, international adoptions can be fraught with corruption and difficult questions about the rights of birth parents. Those questions are especially complicated when the adoptive parents are white and wealthy, and the birth parents and children are poor and people of color. Closed adoptions, where all ties are cut between children and their birth parents, are especially prone to abuses.
In Haiti, it seems that the desperate parents contacted by the missionaries weren’t told that their children might one day be adopted. Instead, they were told the children would be cared for and schooled in the Dominican Republic–and that they could visit one another. “If someone offers to take my children to a paradise,” a mother told the New York Times, “am I supposed to say no?”
As adoption expert David Smolin of Cumberland Law School commented in the New York Times:
The risks are very high that children with families would be “adopted” into families in the United States, based on the pretense that they are “orphans.” We know from past history that those children most likely would never be returned to their original families, even if those original families were able to find them and sought their return.
– – – – – – – – – – – – – – – –
IN SPITE of the fact that the missionaries are accused on strong evidence of kidnapping and child trafficking, the U.S. media has positively fawned over them–stopping just short of portraying them as the victims.
In one story after another, the missionaries have been allowed to plead their innocence–and even complain that the Obama administration has not done enough to help them. Typical was the Today show, which described the “frustrating few days” in jail for people “who insist they had only the best intentions.”
Imagine the level of sympathy in the media if the disaster had been, say, a hurricane in South Florida, and a group of Black missionaries, or perhaps Muslims, from another country came to “rescue” white children in the U.S.–with “only the best intentions.”
One writer for the right-wing National Review, Kathryn Jean Lopez, even stooped to citing a Human Rights Watch report detailing the deplorable conditions in Haiti’s prisons–as if the American missionaries have been suffering like an ordinary prisoners. On the contrary, the alleged kidnappers have been giving access to the media, were allowed to speak to relatives via satellite phone, have a large legal team of American lawyers standing by and were allowed to receive food and other supplies from other missionaries.
That’s a far cry from conditions a couple hundred miles to the west, at the U.S. government’s Guantánamo Bay prison camp. As Salon.com’s Glenn Greenwald pointed out, referring to one of the missionaries, Jim Allen, singled out by right wingers:
Why would National Review–which endorses far worse abuses when perpetrated on Muslims convicted of nothing–take up the cause of an accused child smuggler and possible child trafficker, and suddenly find such grave concern over detainee conditions?…Because, as a Christian, Allen is deemed by National Review to deserve basic human rights, unlike the Muslim detainees whose (far worse) abuse they have long supported…
The very same people who have been demanding for years that Muslims be imprisoned for life, tortured and killed with no trials or charges of any kind suddenly become extremely sensitive to the nuances of due process and humane detention conditions. They start sounding like Amnesty International civil liberties extremists–the minute it’s a Christian, rather than a Muslim, who is subjected to such treatment.
1 Comment »
or go to
From the Archives
Early in 1935, a passenger ship bound for Haifa in Palestine left the German port of Bremerhaven. Its stern bore the Hebrew letters for its name, “Tel Aviv,” while a swastika banner fluttered from the mast. And although the ship was Zionist-owned, its captain was a National Socialist Party member. Many years later a traveler aboard the ship recalled this symbolic combination as a “metaphysical absurdity.”/1 Absurd or not, this is but one vignette from a little-known chapter of history: The wide-ranging collaboration between Zionism and Hitler’s Third Reich. … continue
Aletho News Exclusive Content
This article will examine some of the connections between the US and UK National Security apparatus and the appearance of the anthropogenic global warming (AGW) theory beginning after the accident at Three Mile Island. … continue
Also by Aletho News:
September 19, 2011
March 8, 2011
January 2, 2011
October 10, 2010
July 5, 2010
February 25, 2010
February 7, 2010
January 5, 2010
December 26, 2009
December 19, 2009
December 4, 2009
May 9, 2009
- Apologists for Israel, Touted in The NY Times April 26, 2016
- President Obama: The Race for the Imperial Legacy April 29, 2016
TagsAfghanistan Africa AIPAC Al-Manar al-Qaeda American Civil Liberties Union Argentina Bashar al-Assad Benjamin Netanyahu Brazil Canada Central Intelligence Agency China CIA Colombia Cuba Da’esh Egypt EU European Union FBI Federal Bureau of Investigation France Gaza Germany Hamas Hebron Hezbollah Hillary Clinton Honduras Human rights India International Atomic Energy Agency International Solidarity Movement Iran Iraq Iraq War ISIL ISIS Israel Israeli settlement Japan Jerusalem John Kerry Latin America Lebanon Libya Mexico Middle East Military National Security Agency NATO New York Times NSA Obama Pakistan Palestine Police Press TV Qatar Russia Sanctions against Iran Saudi Arabia Syria Turkey UK Ukraine United Nations United States USA Venezuela Washington Post West Bank Yemen Zionism
Visits Since December 2009
- 2,560,286 hits
Contact:atheonews (at) gmail.com
- Drafting Women Means Equality in Slavery May 2, 2016
- Israeli Justice Ministry drops probe after report that contractor behind Qalandiya killings May 1, 2016
- The man who killed Billie Holiday May 1, 2016
- Historic Ruling Opens Discovery Phase for CIA Torture Victims’ Lawsuit May 1, 2016
- NATO Prepares Four Battalions for Russian Border May 1, 2016
- Neocons Make Trump Sound Like Peacenik on Foreign Policy May 1, 2016
- ALEPPO, SYRIA: Remember Benghazi Before You Buy the Latest Propaganda… May 1, 2016
- Israeli police refuse to release video of Qalandiya murder May 1, 2016
- Guardian’s Peter Beaumont “Piles on” Ken Livingstone, Mangles Nazi-Era and Zionist History May 1, 2016
- The Observer Calls on the Benign Empire to Fix Syria May 1, 2016
- Zionism and the Third Reich May 1, 2016
- Baghdad State of Emergency, Green Zone Stormed April 30, 2016
- Pentagon Whitewashes Mass Murder April 30, 2016
- Chemical vapors sicken 20 nuclear facility workers, cause evacuation, work stoppage April 30, 2016
- Hanford, Not Fukushima, is the Big Radiological Threat to the West Coast April 30, 2016
- House committee holds hearing on modernizing US nuclear infrastructure April 30, 2016
- Strengthening Biological Weapons Convention requires constructive approach April 30, 2016
- Russian MoD States US Spy Plane Intercepted in Accordance With Int’l Law April 30, 2016
Looking for something?
Categories"Hope and Change" Aletho News Civil Liberties Corruption Deception Economics Environmentalism Ethnic Cleansing, Racism, Zionism False Flag Terrorism Full Spectrum Dominance Illegal Occupation Islamophobia Mainstream Media, Warmongering Malthusian Ideology, Phony Scarcity Militarism Nuclear Power Science and Pseudo-Science Solidarity and Activism Subjugation - Torture Supremacism, Social Darwinism Timeless or most popular Video War Crimes Wars for Israel
This site is provided as a research and reference tool. Although we make every reasonable effort to ensure that the information and data provided at this site are useful, accurate, and current, we cannot guarantee that the information and data provided here will be error-free. By using this site, you assume all responsibility for and risk arising from your use of and reliance upon the contents of this site.
This site and the information available through it do not, and are not intended to constitute legal advice. Should you require legal advice, you should consult your own attorney.
Nothing within this site or linked to by this site constitutes investment advice or medical advice.
Materials accessible from or added to this site by third parties, such as comments posted, are strictly the responsibility of the third party who added such materials or made them accessible and we neither endorse nor undertake to control, monitor, edit or assume responsibility for any such third-party material.
The posting of stories, commentaries, reports, documents and links (embedded or otherwise) on this site does not in any way, shape or form, implied or otherwise, necessarily express or suggest endorsement or support of any of such posted material or parts therein.
The word "alleged" is deemed to occur before the word "fraud." Since the rule of law still applies. To peasants, at least.
This site contains copyrighted material the use of which has not always been specifically authorized by the copyright owner. We are making such material available in our efforts to advance understanding of environmental, political, human rights, economic, democracy, scientific, and social justice issues, etc. We believe this constitutes a 'fair use' of any such copyrighted material as provided for in section 107 of the US Copyright Law. In accordance with Title 17 U.S.C. Section 107, the material on this site is distributed without profit to those who have expressed a prior interest in receiving the included information for research and educational purposes. For more info go to: http://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/17/107.shtml. If you wish to use copyrighted material from this site for purposes of your own that go beyond 'fair use', you must obtain permission from the copyright owner.
This is information for anyone that wishes to challenge our “fair use” of copyrighted material.
If you are a legal copyright holder or a designated agent for such and you believe that content residing on or accessible through our website infringes a copyright and falls outside the boundaries of “Fair Use”, please send a notice of infringement by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
We will respond and take necessary action immediately.
If notice is given of an alleged copyright violation we will act expeditiously to remove or disable access to the material(s) in question.
All 3rd party material posted on this website is copyright the respective owners / authors. Aletho News makes no claim of copyright on such material.