Simon Wiesenthal Center: White Supremacy Hate and Nazi Symbols Motivated Mosque Massacres

March 15, 2019

The Simon Wiesenthal Center (SWC), a major Jewish Human Rights NGO condemned the mass murder of 49 people in two New Zealand Mosques and the wounding of many others.

“An attack on any House of Worship, whether a Church in France or the US, synagogues in Jerusalem or Pittsburgh or yesterday’s horrific mass murder in two mosques in Christchurch is an assault on human dignity and our rights as people of faith to pray to G-d,” lamented Rabbis Marvin Hier and Abraham Cooper, the SWC’s Dean and Founder and Associate Dean and Director of Global Social Action.

“While we join in mourning those killed at the mosques and pray for the recovery of all those injured, it is clear that the shooter was motivated by the hateful ideology of White Supremacy and the Sunwheel which stands alongside the Nazi Swastika as an icon of hate.

“In many ways his hatred was inspired and validated by the same volent online narrative that motivated the Pittsburgh Synagogue mass murderer, Richard Bowers, who was involved with online platforms of the extreme alt-right, including Voat and Gab.

“The fact that the heinous crimes were live-streamed via social media is an especially ominous development,” Hier and Cooper added.

Just yesterday the SWC released its 2019 Digital Terrorism and Hate Report at a press conference at New York City’s City Hall. Rabbi Cooper was surrounded by Jewish community leaders from Crown Heights which has suffered scores of violent attacks targeting Jews over recent months. “In 2019, social media is the main platform for and target of racists, anti-Semites and terrorism’s propagandists and recruiters,” said Cooper.

For more information, please contact the Center's Communications Department, 310-553-9036, join the Center on Facebook,, or follow @simonwiesenthal for news updates sent direct to your Twitter feed.
The Simon Wiesenthal Center is one of the largest international Jewish human rights organizations with over 400,000 member families in the United States. It is an NGO at international agencies including the United Nations, UNESCO, the OSCE, the OAS, the Council of Europe and the Latin American Parliament (Parlatino).

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