NGO MONITOR 4th SEPT. 2012
“The Politics of Human Rights and Assaults on Israel.”
It was a very interesting and informative evening during which Prof. Steinberg detailed at length, and in detail, how that certain Non Governmental Organisations (NGO’s) have, in recent years, become politicised and biased against Israel. This bias has gone on largely unchecked by the world’s media and Western Governments, even to the point where so-called “impartial” groups are now actively campaigning to de-legitimise Israel’s continued existence as a State.
He reported that at the 2001 Durban Conference 1,500 NGO’s described Israel as an “Apartheid State” which was a declaration of a Propaganda War against Israel. Zionism has become equated with racism.
In 2009 Richard Goldstone published his oft quoted report into the Gaza Mission. This report is often quoted and used to back up evidence of Israeli Human Rights violations. Yet in 2011 Goldstone retracted his claim that it was Israeli government policy to deliberately target citizens:
In a 1 April 2011 article in the Washington Post reflecting on the Commission’s work, Goldstone wrote that the report would have been different if he had been aware of information that has become known since its issuance. While expressing regret that Israel’s failure to co-operate with the Commission had hindered its ability to gather exculpatory facts, he approved Israel’s subsequent internal investigations into incidents described in the report as well as their establishment of policies to better protect civilians in future conflicts. He contrasted the Israeli reaction with the failure of Hamas to investigate or modify their methods and procedures. Goldstone said he had hoped that the Commission’s inquiry “would begin a new era of evenhandedness at the U.N. Human Rights Council, whose history of bias against Israel cannot be doubted”. In addition, according to a report in Haaretz, Goldstone told associates in early 2011 that “he has been in great distress and under duress” ever since publication of his report.
Robert Bernstein has openly denounced the organisation he founded “Human Rights Watch” for what he believes is HRW’s obssessive preoccupation with Israel. In a letter to the Guardian newspaper in November, 2009, Bernstein spoke about how this was damaging HRW’s valuable work:
As I wrote in a letter to the current and immediate past chairs of HRW, Jane Olson and Jonathan Fanton, who succeeded me in that position: “I believe Israel should be judged by the highest possible standard and I have never argued anything else.” I added that “the current argument is whether HRW’s facts and judgments about the Gaza conflict are correct. That is certainly a necessary and legitimate discussion.” I have spoken out because I have come to believe quite strongly that they are not correct and that is causing great damage to some outstanding work that HRW does around the world.
HRW itself came under severe criticism itself for seeking Saudi funding:
This is a serious allegation, and one I found difficult to believe, because Human Rights Watch has always been moderately careful about the optics of its fundraising efforts. The group’s credibility, of course, rests on its neutrality; playing traditional enemies off each other as a way to collect money from one (or both) sides in a conflict seems beyond the pale. (Let’s put aside for now the queasy-making image of a human rights organization venturing into one of the world’s most anti-democratic societies to criticize one of the Middle East’s most democratic states.)……
I wrote back: “That’s not what I’m getting at. I’m simply asking the question, did your staff person attempt to raise funds in Saudi Arabia by advertising your organization’s opposition to the pro-Israel lobby?”…….
In other words, yes, the director of Human Rights Watch’s Middle East division is attempting to raise funds from Saudis, including a member of the Shura Council (which oversees, on behalf of the Saudi monarchy, the imposition in the Kingdom of the strict Wahhabi interpretation of Islamic law) in part by highlighting her organization’s investigations of Israel, and its war with Israel’s “supporters,” who are liars and deceivers. It appears as if Human Rights Watch, in the pursuit of dollars, has compromised its integrity.
See full article at:
To read about the work of Prof. Steinberg and NGO Monitor see:
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