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For many years, the powerful realm of nongovernmental organizations (NGOs) has been infiltrated by bad actors who exploit the image of altruism to get big donations and promote agendas of hate.

While the evidence of manipulation and corruption is readily found, many politicians, journalists and academics continue to automatically give organizations claiming to support moral principles—peace, democracy, human rights, free speech etc.—a stamp of approval and are eager to be featured on their platforms. This “halo effect” surrounds and protects the powerful political NGO industry from scrutiny. In contrast to the governmental and business sectors, these organizations have no frameworks for oversight, checks and balances, or independent oversight.

However, occasionally this NGO halo effect gets punctured, the carefully manicured images exposed as frauds and the immoral reality becoming visible, causing embarrassment and worse for all involved.

Human Rights Watch, a mega-NGO, maintained a façade of credibility despite a long history of false claims and obsessive condemnations targeting Israel. Top officials, aided by a well-paid public relations staff, carefully polish HRW’s reputation and attack critics. (I am a frequent target.) Recently, however, evidence has emerged of secret funding from Qatar. Also, Danielle Haas, who spent 13 years as a senior editor at the NGO, confirmed and provided details exposing HRW’s “research” and deeply embedded antisemitism. As the halo disappears, everyone associated with this organization, including staff members, donors and board members, is tainted.