NGO Monitor and AIJAC respond to Breaking the Silence
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From Professor Geral Steinberg, President of NGO Monitor:
The ABC Four Corners programme on the treatment of Palestinian children is part and parcel of the ongoing political warfare through which a number of radical and often marginal non-governmental organizations (NGOs) seek to demonize Israel. In his attempt to defend the central role of one such group — Breaking the Silence (BTS) — Yehuda Shaul continues this warfare, through the gross exploitation of human rights principles and the distortion of international law.
Mr. Shaul conveniently omits many facts that are inconsistent with his personal crusade, starting with the fact that his activities are part of “the Durban NGO strategy”, adopted in 2001 with the explicit objective of promoting the “complete isolation of Israel as an apartheid state.” In the context of this dirty war, self-appointed warrior-activists the front-line aggressors carry the heavy weapons of demonization.
Another inconvenient fact is that the money that BTS and its NGO allies receive from European governments and the New Israel Fund is officially provided in order to contribute to the debate “within Israeli society”, and clearly not for touring the world, including Australia, with false allegations of Israeli war crimes. A thousand videos and a million pages of “testimonies” are irrelevant when they are based on unverifiable and second-hand allegations, stripped of the context of Palestinian mass terrorism.
Similarly, by selling these second-hand and unverifiable allegations to reporters looking for quick and spectacular headlines, as in this case, Mr. Shaul and his friends are avoiding precisely the actions necessary for a moral agenda. If they had a real case, they would present the evidence to the Israeli authorities and public, where the charges and their credibility could be investigated.
A few years ago, Judge Richard Goldstone had the moral courage and honesty to renounce the 500 page “report” that bears his name. This indictment, as part of the Durban strategy, was based on false and unsupported allegations designed to demonize Israel, including many that came from BTS and other fringe Israeli NGOs. Instead of pursuing his own personal and immoral war against Israel in Australia, Mr. Shaul could learn about about morality from Judge Goldstone, among many others.