|Sizer with Arafat|
Stephen Sizer, who has been warned in the past about sharing Holocaust denial and Zionist conspiracy articles, linked on Facebook to a page entitled ‘9-11/Israel did it,’ which alleges Israel was responsible for the terrorist assaults in 2001 that killed nearly 3,000 people. Under the link to the page on conspiracy theory website Wikispooks, he wrote: “Is this antisemitic? If so no doubt I'll be asked to remove it. It raises so many questions.”
On Friday morning the Church responded, apologising for both the content and timing of the post, coming as it did during a week of Holocaust memorial services. The statement read: “Our attention has been drawn to comments by the Rev. Stephen Sizer made earlier today on social media. In those comments Rev. Sizer linked to an article entitled ‘9/11 Israel did it’. “These comments would rightly be seen as unacceptable whenever they were posted. It is a matter of deep sorrow and shame that they have been posted in this week of all weeks. “The Diocese of Guildford, where the Rev Sizer is licensed, is taking immediate steps to investigate. The diocese is aware of the seriousness of the matter and are also in touch with the Board of Deputies of British Jews.”
The Board of Deputies has complained to the Church about previous posts by Rev Sizer, and in 2013 met with him to agree on an acceptable level of behaviour. Reacting to the latest post, Board vice president Jonathan Arkush accused the vicar of breaking this agreement. He said: "Posting a link and giving approval to an article which in effect accuses Jews of responsibility for the 9/11 atrocity is unquestionably antisemitic, just as it is beyond absurd. "I am extremely concerned that a Minister of the Church of England could possibly have considered it appropriate or becoming to his position to advertise such racist nonsense. "I regard Rev Sizer as having breached the terms of his undertakings given to the Board of Deputies as a result of the disciplinary complaint against him. This is a very serious matter and the Board will be taking further action."
Last year, Rev Sizer attended a conference in Iran where Israel was accused of plotting the attacks on New York’s World Trade Centre buildings in a session called ‘Zionist Fingerprints on the 9/11 Cover-up’.