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"Ken Roth, who heads Human Rights Watch, used a visit to Ottawa to blast Canada for its decision not to participate in the Durban Review Conference. Roth’s brash pronouncement that "the Canadian policy boycott is a mistake" came after the Obama administration sent a delegation to Geneva to explore the options for negotiation. But NGO activists such as Roth and Alex Neve, head of Amnesty International’s Canadian branch, got it wrong, and not for the first time. Principled compromise in a hate-filled anti-democracy environment is impossible, and the Americans pulled out after a week. They recognized that "the document being negotiated has gone from bad to worse, and the current text of the draft outcome document is not salvageable." This is one of many examples in which powerful groups that use human rights rhetoric are on the wrong side of the moral divide. In the NGO Forum of the 2001 Durban conference, Human Rights Watch and Amnesty were active participants in the racist proceedings, and they have often joined in gratuitous Israel-bashing in the UN and elsewhere. In the flood of statements on the complex Gaza conflict, there was almost no discussion of the human rights violations by Hamas, including the thousands of rocket attacks and the extensive use of human shields. Such behaviour highlights the enormous damage that results from NGO double standards and political bias. The bias is reflected in Roth’s pronouncements, and his attacks on Canada should be viewed skeptically. Leaders on both sides of the parliamentary divide have long recognized that the United Nations has come to be dominated by anti-democratic blocs such as the Organization of the Islamic Countries, and their power must be confronted. Instead, Roth preaches accommodation, claiming that democracies "such as Canada have to put up with the thugs of the world praising each other so they get a chance to call China et al on the carpet." Co-operation with Libya, Iran, and Saudi Arabia is justified on the basis of illusory confrontations with China. But the Chinese recognize that the UN human rights mechanisms and allied NGOs only pay lip service to human rights principles. Instead of lecturing Canadians, NGO officials should set their houses in order. Human rights cannot be advanced by diatribes against democracies, or by negotiating with thugs."