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‘Extremely Bad Precedent’—Mohler Points Finger at Biden Administration’s Hostage Deal With Iran Following Hamas Attack on Israel

R. Albert Mohler, Jr., president of Southern Baptist Theological Seminary in Louisville, Ky., speaks during the joint seminary report June 15 at the 2022 Southern Baptist Convention annual meeting. Photo by Adam Covington (courtesty of Baptist Press)

On Monday (Oct. 9), author and theologian Albert Mohler weighed in on the unfolding war in Israel on his podcast, “The Briefing.” In his analysis, Mohler, the president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, pointed the finger at the foreign policy decisions of the Biden administration as contributing to the circumstances that enabled the unprecedented attack on Israel.

On the morning of Saturday, Oct. 7, Israeli citizens near the Gaza Strip were awoken by war sirens as Hamas, a Palestinian militant group with backing from Iran, launched an all-out assault on Israel, launching thousands of rockets, as well as a ground incursion. 

As of Sunday evening, AP News reported that the death toll had surpassed 1,100, with thousands wounded on both sides. At least 700 people have reportedly been killed in Israel, and more than 400 have been killed in Gaza. At least nine Americans have reportedly been killed.

Hamas fighters have been brutalizing Israeli citizens during their ground incursion, taking hostage both soldiers and civilians, some of them women and children. Some estimate that Hamas is holding hundreds of hostages. 

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In his analysis of the conflict, Mohler remarked that “the brutality of this attack is almost beyond our imagination.”

“Behind all of this is the nation of Iran,” Mohler said. “There is simply no doubt that Iran is behind the attack funding it and helping to orchestrate it if not directly involved in the attack itself.” Mohler added that this attack is part of “a larger and more sinister plot, and that plot is to bring Israel to an end, and that has been the determination of many nations in the region for a very long time.”

“Iran is a major force for destabilization throughout that entire region of the world. And frankly, its terrorist involvements go far beyond the Middle East,” Mohler said. “One of the rallying points for Islamic identity, particularly when that identity is being forged or at least influenced by a nation like Iran, one of the arguments has been that it is an Islamic cause to bring about the end of Israel. And that’s not a new thing.”

“That has been an Arab and increasingly an Islamist goal for decades going all the way back to 1948,” he added, referencing the year modern Israel was established as a nation.

Given Iran’s presumed proxy involvement in the conflict, Mohler went on to criticize the Biden administration, which unfroze $6 billion of Iranian assets in exchange for the release of five American hostages in September. 

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Mohler believes that at least some of those funds have been used for terrorist plots, including the attack on Israel.