During a live TV interview between an Anonymous member and Shirley Phelps-Roper from the Westboro Baptist Church, the escalating war between the two has peaked. In the 10-minute-plus interview, Phelps-Roper repeatedly blamed Anonymous for a letter released earlier this week promising to attack the infamous Westboro Baptist Church. Anonymous has been claiming since the accusation that it was not the author of the widely circulated message, and insists the entire operation was likely a ploy for attention on the congregation’s part.
During the interview, Anonymous continuously and calmly reiterated it was not responsible for the original letter, and that the church’s site had been taken down earlier by another hacktivist widely known as “th3j3st3r.” The Jester took credit for the hack via his Twitter on February 21.
But Phelps-Roper would have none of it. Between hurling insults and thanking Anonymous for the increased attention to the church’s cause (which includes degrading fallen US soldiers and homosexuals), she refused to hear out Anonymous’ defense. After nearly nine minutes of listening to her crazed diatribe, the hacktivist group took action. “I was just going to say in the time that Shirley was blabbing her religious preachings I actually did some business and I think if you check downloads.westborobaptistchurch right now you’ll see a nice message from Anonymous.”
Indeed, after insisting that no hacker could take down its controversial website, Anonymous was able to do so in a matter of moments, and seemingly without prior planning. “We just put up a nice release while Shirley was preaching there…Yeah we just, we had enough. We responded [to the original letter from Westboro Baptist] maturely…then Shirley comes on the show, [says] I’m going to hell, so we’ve given her something to look at.”
Phelps-Roper, somewhere between resilient and irate, seems to misinterpret the episode and asks, “So are you saying you did take down the websites or you did not take down the websites?”
The domain is currently inaccessible, but you can view a cached page here. It begins, “Greetings Westboro Baptist Church, if you’re reading this, it means that Anonymous has lost its patience with you, likely because you’ve threatened us again after we denied you a war.” The group also points out the organization is far and away below its standards, and that operations involving Middle Eastern countries in revolution and the HBGary controversy are more deserving of its time and effort. In addition to the message, Anonymous also included access to Westboro Baptist’s internal server.
Anonymous has established itself as a force not to be tampered with, and gained notoriety along the way. Various organizations may be willing to attach themselves to its name for publicity, or even to belittle its cause – which Westboro Baptist has obviously learned the hard way. “The world (including Anonymous) disagrees with your hateful messages, but you have the right to voice them. This does not mean you can jump onto Anonymous for attention. God hates fags: assumption. Anonymous hates leeches: fact,” concludes the letter.
Check out the video in full below.