The bishops are members of the St. Pius X Society, which was founded in 1970 by a French archbishop, Marcel Lefebvre, in opposition to Vatican II reforms. They were excommunicated by Pope John Paul II in 1988 after Archbishop Lefebvre consecrated them in unsanctioned ceremonies.
One of these four is a holocaust denier:
Bishop Richard Williamson recently told Swedish TV: "I believe there were no gas chambers. I think that two to three hundred thousand Jews perished in Nazi concentration camps but none of them by gas chambers."
Brilliant tactics, there Pope. What's the message you're sending out to the world? If you are GLBT or a feminist, it's a really, really awful thing for the world. But someone who denies the mass slaughter of six million of the world's population in WWII? Not such a bad dude, apparently. But, this is the same loon who thinks that 9/11 is part of some larger conspiracy, and that women shouldn't be educated - so I don't think we're talking about the most broad minded of humanity somehow.
It's not like the world as a whole knows, or really cares, about some doctrinal squabbling within the Catholic faith. What they will see - I guarantee it - will be a hardline, conservative Pope cuddling up with what amounts to a neo-nazi in a cassock.
Good thinking! Just the image the Church needs to project right now.