(Updated April 27, 2010) Blog entries written in 2009 by NGO activist Lizi Sagie, recently hired by B’Tselem, using Nazi rhetoric and anti-Israel demonization, are incongruous with the mission of a human rights organization, according to Jerusalem-based NGO Monitor.
Sagie’s statements, published by Yonatan D. HaLevi and in the Israeli media, include (translations by NGO Monitor):
- “The IDF Memorial Day is a pornographic circus of glorifying grief and silencing voices.”
- “Israel is committing Humanity’s worst atrocities... Israel is proving its devotion to Nazi values... Israel exploits the Holocaust to reap international benefits.”
- “We don’t erect gas chambers and extermination camps, but if there were any, how many people would actually resist it, and not only in their hearts?”
“This is another example of the immorality and ideological extremism among some who exploit the rhetoric of human rights and strip these principles of any value,” said Professor Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor. “Many NGOs activists, who claim to represent Israeli ‘civil society’ but are funded by European Commission, New Israel Fund, and individual European governments, are responsible for highly uncivil behavior.”
Sagie, currently B’Tselem’s data coordination director, co-authored a March 2010 report for Israeli-Arab NGO Mossawa labeling the current Knesset as “the most racist in history,” and organized a rally against the “Nakba bill.” Sagie is also a Machsom Watch activist; a member of New Profile, where she “works to change the militarization of society, supporting persons who have refused military service”; and, according to NIF-Israel, a volunteer with Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP).
Other examples of her online rhetoric include: “In the name of the State of Judaism [sic] we have stolen lands, murdered, starved others and made them thirsty, betrayed, and lied to ourselves and the whole world, have created ghettos to all kinds of ‘others’ [and] allowed fascists to raise their heads.” “Israel has invented antisemitism in order to escape responsibility for its crimes.” “Israel is turning IDF casualties into celebrities and encourages children to become Shaheeds (Martyrs).”
UPDATE: Lizi Sagie has resigned from B’Tselem because of this controversy.