Israel Bombarded by Rockets, Human Rights Watch Nowhere in Sight
While Israel is being bombarded by rockets from Palestinian terrorists in Gaza, placing more than one million civilians in danger, Human Rights Watch (HRW) is nowhere in sight. Apparently the human rights of Israelis are just not a concern to them. This is just another example of how HRW has not just lost its moral compass, but how the anchor has been thrown overboard as well.
In 2012 alone, Palestinian terrorists in Hamas-controlled Gaza have fired at least 850 rockets and mortars on southern Israel, however you would be hard pressed to find even a syllable of condemnation of the attacks from HRW.
Although the mission statement of HRW might begin with their pledge to be "... protecting the human rights of people around the world," when it comes to the human rights of Israelis, HRW is nowhere in sight.
In the 48 hours from November 10-12, towns in southern Israel have been bombarded by over 160 rockets from Palestinian terrorists in the Gaza Strip, who have sent over a million Israelis running for bomb shelters. That is more than three rockets an hour.
To put things in context: one million Israelis amounts to roughly 13% of the population. The American equivalent – 13% of the U.S. population – would amount to about 40 million people, or five times the population of New York City.
One Israeli resident, Moshik Levy, remarked "every time my [3 yr old] son hears a 'Code Red' [rocket siren] it takes years off my life," while another recently said "we just lie on top of our children and try to protect them with our bodies."
So, one might be forgiven for thinking that HRW would speak up to condemn the indiscriminate firing of rockets by Palestinians on Israeli civilians for the blatant war crime and breach of international humanitarian law that it is. But nope. Nothing. Not a word.
During the most recent rocket bombardment from Gaza a few weeks ago, in which Palestinian terrorists also fired over 100 rockets at Israel in the space of several days, HRW was also nowhere in sight.
In what can only be described as Orwellian, HRW instead used that opportunity to fire a few salvos of their own – at Israel – condemning everything from 'settlements', to Israel's policy on asylum seekers and even Israel's entirely legal decision to detain Abdullatif Ghaitha, a Palestinian accused of committing offences which threatened Israel's national security.
HRW's anti-Israel bias and pathological obsession with the Jewish state -- while neglecting or whitewashing more grievous crimes committed by Arab regimes in the Middle East -- has been abundantly documented in the past.
That double standard was primarily what led HRW's founder, Robert Bernstein, to turn on the organization he create in 1978, when he stated that HRW had lost its "critical perspective." In a scathing New York Times op-ed in October 2009, Bernstein wrote that despite being the "repeated victim of aggression," Israel still faces the brunt of HRW's criticism, notwithstanding that the "region is populated by authoritarian regimes with appalling human rights records."
NGO Monitor, an independent think-tank devoted to monitoring non-government organizations (NGOs) active in the field of human rights, has noted that "[f]or the past decade, HRW has played a major role in the destruction of the moral and universal foundations of human rights and the exploitation of these principles for ideological objectives."
One need only look at a brief sample of HRW's recent track record.
In 2011, HRW appointed Shawan Jabarin to its Middle East Advisory Board. Jabarin was a senior figure in the Palestinian group PFLP (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine), responsible for carrying out dozens of suicide bombings against Israeli civilians, and recognized as a terror group by over 30 countries, including the United States and the European Union.
In 2007, Jabarin was convicted by the Israeli Supreme Court of recruiting other terrorist members, and was sentenced to 24-months in jail. In its judgment, the Court described him as "Dr. Jekyll and Mr. Hyde" because of his moonlighting as a director of a Palestinian human rights organization (Al Haq) by day and a senior activist in a terrorist organization (PFLP) by night.
In 2009, NGO Monitor also helped disclose how HRW held a fundraising dinner in Saudi Arabia, in which they cited their anti-Israel focus, battles with "pro-Israel pressure groups" and activities in the United Nations to solicit funds from "prominent members of Saudi society." That HRW would use the Jewish state, the sole democracy in the Middle East, as bait to elicit funding from Saudi Arabia – one of the most egregious abusers of human rights in the world – ought to speak volumes.
Further, in 2009, Sarah Leah Whitson, Director of HRW's Middle East and North Africa Division, also visited Libya, where she praised Muammar Gaddafi's son Seif al-Islam as a leading "reformer" and "just the sort of modernizer Libya needs," while in 2011 attacking Israeli President and Nobel Peace Prize laureate Shimon Peres, and accusing Israel of "racial segregation."
This is the same Ms Whitson who went to Riyadh on a fundraising tour two years earlier.
With this record of moral inversion, HRW has not just lost its moral compass, but the anchor has been thrown overboard as well.
HRW proclaims it is dedicated to defending and protecting human rights around the world, yet when it comes to Israel, it seems Jewish blood is cheap and the human rights of Israelis just do not matter.
Reader comments on this item
|We all wore red on Sunday, doubly poignant as it was Remembrance Sunday. Why?... [179 words]||Kate Brennan||Nov 15, 2012 04:33|
|Why do we call it the Israel-Arab conflict? [43 words]||Batya Casper, Israelathebook.com||Nov 14, 2012 23:04|
|Human Rights Watch and Palestinians [29 words]||Sam McFarland||Nov 14, 2012 15:08|
|Nowhere in sight! [31 words]||Ethan P.||Nov 14, 2012 10:43|
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by Mudar Zahran
"If Hamas does not like you for any reason all they have to do now is say you are a Mossad agent and kill you." — A., a Fatah member in Gaza.
"Hamas wanted us butchered so it could win the media war against Israel showing our dead children on TV and then get money from Qatar." — T., former Hamas Ministry officer.
"They would fire rockets and then run away quickly, leaving us to face Israeli bombs for what they did." — D., Gazan journalist.
"Hamas imposed a curfew: anyone walking out in the street was shot. That way people had to stay in their homes, even if they were about to get bombed. Hamas held the whole Gazan population as a human shield." — K., graduate student
"The Israeli army allows supplies to come in and Hamas steals them. It seems even the Israelis care for us more than Hamas." — E., first-aid volunteer.
"We are under Hamas occupation, and if you ask most of us, we would rather be under Israeli occupation… We miss the days when we were able to work inside Israel and make good money. We miss the security and calm Israel provided when it was here." — S., graduate of an American university, former Hamas sympathizer.
by Ben Cohen
Now, with the Islamic State's self-proclaimed caliphate having captured key oil wells in the Middle East this year, foreign oil has become an even more lethal financial weapon-of-choice for those seeking to destroy democracy and further escalate the War on Terror.
That President Barack Obama failed even to mention oil as a critical factor in the war against IS during his speech to the nation on September 10, is an omission both revealing and dangerous in terms of how his administration wants to depict the stakes involved in this latest confrontation with the jihadis.
by Lawrence A. Franklin
One Pakistani recruiter of child suicide bombers describes these children as "tools provided by God."
Another Muslim cleric in a madrassa [Islamic boys' school] describes child suicide bombers as "a gift from Allah that we have an unlimited number willing to be sacrificed to teach Americans a lesson."
Using children as suicide bombers will stop when... they stop "condoning the killing of innocents."
by Denis MacEoin
"No religion condones the killing of innocents." — U.S. President Barack Obama, September 10, 2014.
"Islam is a religion of peace." — U.K. Prime Minister David Cameron, September 13, 2014.
"There is a place for violence in Islam. There is a place for jihad in Islam." — U.K. Imam Anjem Choudary, CBN News, April 5, 2010.
Regrettably it is impossible to re-interpret the Qur'an in a "moderate" manner. The most famous modern interpretation by Sayyid Qutb (d. 1966), the Muslim Brotherhood ideologue, leads the reader again and again into political territory, where jihad is at the root of action.
If they deviated from the true faith -- as we are seeing in the Islamic State today -- "backsliders," like pagans, were to be fought until they either accepted Islam or were killed.
In India alone, between 60 and 80 million Hindus may have been put to death by Muslim armies between the years 1000-1525.
by Yaakov Lappin
Hamas's long-term ambitions are indistinguishable from those of Islamic State and al-Qaeda.
Hamas will now focus on its next goal -- trying to strengthen its presence in the West Bank and eventually toppling the Palestinian Authority from power there, just as it did in Gaza. If Israel were to withdraw from the West Bank, Hamas would certainly find such a goal easier to accomplish.
Nothing keeps the flames of jihad alight, and Hamas's popularity secure, like frequent wars.