"In any case, the Libyan transition is now burdened with charges of human rights violations by Human Rights Watch, the bona fides of which I don’t especially trust. Still, on these present matters I have no evidence—only hunches. HRW is especially harsh, has an especial tick for blasting the good guys who aren’t perfect or who can’t impose the discipline of tolerance on angry young men in the midst of a revolution. And then there are the internecine quarrels of tribes and religious groups. I do not pretend that these are inventions. The central HRW figure in the Middle East is one Sarah Leah Whitson. She is a mendacious lady in a post that requires judgment, balance, and an allergy to bullshit. As a New Republic article by Ben Birnbaum proved, Whitson has led a jaundiced crusade against Israel with the kind of laughable indiscretion that in better days would have put her on the margins of public debate. But she has an obsession with an evil Israel that faces no enemies but itself. For example, in these days when any left-wing crackpot with a doctorate can get a job at some respectable institution, Norman G. Finkelstein, with a bibliography of anti-Semitic tracts, was denied tenure at DePaul University in Chicago. He is actually laughable—if he weren’t so skillfully deceitful. Whitson calls his work “thankless but courageous.” I suppose she also thinks of her own libels of Israel as thankless but courageous."