It’s strange that groups claiming to be well-versed in human rights seem so unfamiliar with the concept of free speech.
03 February '10
Those who make a full-time pursuit of criticizing others probably should grow thicker skin. Yet the New Israel Fund (NIF) and its NGO grantees have launched a thin-skinned offensive against an Israeli student group that criticized them. And they have dragged NGO Monitor into the fray.
As soon as Im Tirtzu released its report detailing how Israeli human rights organizations contributed to the Goldstone Report, NIF backers unleashed ad hominem attacks against the student group and against NGO Monitor (though we were not involved in the report). NIF has threatened to sue Im Tirtzu and any newspaper that repeats its findings. It also sent a letter to Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu calling NGO Monitor “the rotten fruit of Israeli democracy.”
The record needs to be set straight regarding many troubling aspects of NIF’s combative reaction. To avert criticism of their activities, many of the non-governmental organizations highlighted in Im Tirtzu’s report – such as B’Tselem, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel and Physicians for Human Rights-Israel – are promoting the canard that if only Israel had cooperated with Richard Goldstone and his UN fact-finding mission on the Gaza war, his report would not have been as outrageously one-sided as it turned out to be.
In truth, there is no evidence that Israeli participation in the Goldstone mission would have changed the outcome of the widely panned report.
Goldstone’s mission was the product of a political war conducted against Israel in the UN Human Rights Council. Led by some of the world’s most abusive regimes – including China, Cuba and Saudi Arabia – this corrupt body has ignored mass atrocities such as the genocide in Darfur, the slaughter of more than 25,000 Sri Lankans and the forced starvation and enslavement of North Koreans. Indeed, the Goldstone mission was created by the Organization of the Islamic Conference to deflect attention from the horrific abuses of its member states and their supporters. In fact, according to the International Criminal Court prosecutor, Goldstone’s mission was financed by the Arab League.
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