Contribution by Soros Should be Used to Revamp Organization
08 September '10
Jerusalem – A $100 million “challenge grant” from George Soros to Human Rights Watch (HRW) will not contribute to universal human rights, but will instead allow expansion of the biases and ideologies that have severely damaged this organization’s reputation, notes NGO Monitor, a Jerusalem-based research institution.
“Human Rights Watch was founded to promote a noble moral mission, but unfortunately acts in a very immoral manner,” says Professor Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor. “HRW claims to be ‘even-handed’ and to publish ‘credible reports,’ but this is contradicted by highly biased activities in the Middle East, particularly on the Arab-Israeli conflict. Time and again, HRW reports on Israel are based on false or unverifiable claims, and the analysis strips away the context of the conflict, denying Israelis the right to self-defense. George Soros has supported this travesty.”
NGO Monitor’s monograph, Experts or Ideologues: Systematic Analysis of Human Rights Watch, demonstrated a consistent anti-Israel agenda within the organization, as shown in detailed analysis of the publications in the Middle East and North Africa from 2002 to 2009. This report showed that MENA division director Sarah Leah Whitston and her deputy, Joe Stork, as well as other officials, come from backgrounds in anti-Israel advocacy, rather than human rights and international law.
These biases, which are particular to the Middle East and North Africa (MENA) division, have intensified at HRW. In May 2009, Whitson went to Saudi Arabia to raise funds, selling the message that HRW’s role is central in countering “pro-Israel pressure groups.” Whitson also emphasized HRW’s anti-Israel reporting on the Gaza war, which provided the foundation for the one-sided Goldstone report, as the basis for donations from Saudi funders.
This and other scandals under the leadership of Ken Roth (since 1993), including the Garlasco affair that led to the firing of HRW’s “senior military analyst,” alienated many core HRW donors, and created the crisis and the need for a bailout from Soros.
(Read full report)
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