On July 21, Ken Roth, the executive director of Human Rights Watch (HRW), sarcastically tweeted, “People accept @HRW reporting as fair & accurate around globe but when it comes to poor, helpless, defenseless #Israel we’re suddenly biased.” Now, the first half of Roth’s statement is specious. HRW is roundly and widely criticized across the globe for its politicized approach and false reporting.
But the more important question relates to the second part of Roth’s antagonistic and unprofessional Twitter rant: Why is Roth so worried about HRW’s work on Israel?
One place to start is the pattern of false accusations and invented or totally distorted legal language, which NGO Monitor and others have identified in HRW’s reports on Israel’s actions in Gaza (2012 and 2008-9), Lebanon (2006), and Jenin (2002). As opposed to rigor and expertise, HRW “investigations” reflect anti-Israel bias, lack of research methodology, and flat-out fabrications.
The same has already occurred during the current fighting.
…HRW’s “reports” lack professional standards and research methodologies, and show a deep-seated ideological bias against Israel. HRW possesses neither the military expertise to conduct proper investigations that would lead to their conclusions. The faux-research is then repeated without question in the international media. And every time the allegations are repeated, new rounds of anti-Israel headlines and condemnations are triggered.
Yet, the media continues to uncritically quote HRW as expert spokespeople on human rights and international law.