Contributing to the recently-released report Tip of the Iceberg: Religious Extremist Funders against Human Rights for Sexuality and Reproductive Health in Europe 2009 – 2018, Petra Bayr–President of the European Parliamentary Form for Sexual and Reproductive Rights–states:
“When it comes to opposing feminism, women’s self-determination, and access to sexual and reproductive rights, alliances between religious extremists seem to be close-knit. Across all religious and geographical boundaries, money flows to those who still claim to fight against the spectre of ‘gender ideology’; against those who have fought for women to decide freely about their bodies and their offspring and who stand for comprehensive sexuality education to empower all people to act independently and responsibly to protect their own health and their partners’, as well as their well-being and dignity.”
As mentioned in yesterday’s piece, the report was conducted by radical feminist and LGBT extremist Neil Datta and is used as an attack on all those individuals and organizations from around the world fighting for traditional morality and the traditional family in Europe.
And prominent in Datta’s crosshairs are the International Organization for the Family (IOF) and its leadership. Indeed, on multiple pages in the report, Datta specifically attacks the World Congress of Families (WCF), a project of IOF, and IOF board members Brian Brown, Ignacio Arsuaga, and Alexey Komov, as key players in the movement against the radical leftist agenda in Europe.
The World Congress of Families is mentioned prominently in the Tip of the Iceberg report. So much so, it could be said the report is obsessed with the WCF and its influence in Europe against the radical feminist and LGBT agenda. In the chapter “European Anti-Gender NGO Networks,” the report states: “Religious extremists [read: traditional Christians] from the three regions [the United States, Russia, and Europe] meet regularly in various fora where they jointly strategise, coordinate and network. These fora include…the global and regional gatherings of the WCF since the 1990’s…The WCF is the largest such gathering, with participants from across the whole world, the majority coming from the US Christian Right, European religious and political extremists, and Russian actors.” In the chart “Funders and Actors Involved in Selected Trans-National Anti-Gender Activities and Events,” the WCF is listed first among six prominent conservative international organizations and is shown to have the support of leading pro-family and pro-traditional morality groups from around the world. In the conclusion to the report, Datta again references the WCF: “Anti-gender funders from the US, Russia, and Europe, while primarily active in their respective geographies, interact with each other in trans-national settings such as the WCF….” Then, in Annex 1, Anti-Gender Transnational Fora, Networks and Organizations, the WCF is mentioned yet again:
“The World Congress of Families (WCF)…now gathers European far-right and populist actors, Russian personalities, US Christian Right leaders, and anti-gender Christian actors…WCF organizers have made Europe a priority target and have consequently held their most recent conferences in Verona, Italy (2019), Chisinau, Moldova (2018), Budapest, Hungary (2017), and Tbilisi, Georgia (2016), often with decisive state support.”
Significantly, by repeatedly attacking the World Congress of Families, the report is just confirming the prominent leadership role it and its parent organization the International Organization for the Family play in the international pro-family movement.
Datta also attacks the board members of the International Organization for the Family throughout the report. Indeed, in Annex 2, Religious Actors involved in Anti-Gender Activism, IOF board members Brown, Arsuaga, and Komov are each pictured in their own sections. As a matter of fact, mentions and pictures of the three men can found on multiple pages throughout the report. And what are their sins?–being involved with the World Congress of Families and other conservative organizations fighting for the family and traditional values. For example, Datta writes that “Brian Brown has been involved in numerous US and global anti-SRR [sexual and reproductive rights] organizations….” Ignacio Arsuaga is attacked for speaking at WCF conferences and for founding Citizen Go, which “serves as an ultra-conservative [read: mainstream] social mobilization platform by offering a ‘community of active citizens who work together, using online petitions and action alerts as a resource, to defend and promote life, family, and liberty.’” Alexey Komov is denounced for being involved with the WCF, Citizen Go, the Orthodox Church, and Orthodox-affiliated church organizations. Yet again, by attacking these IOF leaders, the report is merely confirming their effectiveness in the pro-family movement.
In the report Tip of the Iceberg: Religious Extremist Funders against Human Rights for Sexuality and Reproductive Health in Europe 2009 – 2018, the European Parliamentary Forum for Sexual and Reproductive Rights and report author Neil Datta are obsessed with denouncing the International Organization for the Family, its project the World Congress of Families, and IOF board members Brian Brown, Ignacio Arsuaga, and Alexey Komov. However, by its incessant attacks, the report is actually giving a back-handed compliment to IOF and its board members by confirming their prominent leadership roles in the international pro-family movement. Let’s hope that in the next report by extreme feminist and LGBT activist Neil Datta, IOF and its leaders will again be severely attacked for all their significant work on behalf of the family and traditional morality.