Prof. Gerald Steinberg Addresses Knesset Emergency Session on Antisemitism


The following are remarks made by Prof. Gerald Steinberg at an emergency session on antisemitism at the Immigration, Absorption and Diaspora Committee of the Knesset:

  • Since the kidnapping and murder of the three teenagers, throughout the search efforts, and up to these days of fighting in Gaza, we are witnessing a vile escalating demonization campaign on the part of media outlets, Palestinian actors and NGOs claiming to promote human rights, aiming to designate Israel as a ”war criminal state.” This campaign feeds the violent demonstrations and the antiemetic incidents that have broke out across Europe in recent weeks.
  • The groups disseminate false, baseless and unverifiable accusations. On this basis they call for international investigations, arms embargoes and boycott, divestment and sanctions (BDS) against Israel.
  • International NGOs, including Amnesty International and Human Rights Watch, have demonstrated once again their anti-Israel obsession. Since the beginning of the fighting, officials in these groups have published one-sided calls to prosecute Israel, despite their inability to verify the facts on the ground. Israeli, Palestinian, European and American NGOs have also joined these calls. Many of these NGOs are funded by European governments.
  • For instance, B’Tselem has accused Israel of “unlawful actions” and is funded by the EU, Norway, Germany (via EED), Ireland (via Trócaire), UK, Sweden (via Diakonia), the Netherlands (via ICCO) and the Human Rights and International Humanitarian Law Secretariat (joint funds from Sweden, Switzerland, Denmark and the Netherlands). B’Tselem also receives funding from the New Israel Fund ($1,381,969 in 2008-20013).
  • Breaking the Silence (BtS) accused Israel, in an article published in the British Independent, of crossing “moral red lines”, and claimed that the IDF is no longer a defense force but one bent on “revenge.” BtS is funded by the EU, Spain (via AECID), ),  the Netherlands (via ICCO), Belgium (via Broederlijk Delen), the UK (via Christian Aid), Denmark (via DanChurchAid), Germany (via Medico International), Norway, the Open Society Institute and the New Israel Fund.
  • The anti-Israel “Jewish Voice for Peace” (JVP) has called Israeli ambassador to the US, Ron Dermer, a “war criminal”, calls IDF actions “massacres” and calls for BDS against Israel.
  • These false accusations of “war crimes,” “massacres” and “crimes against humanity” which are publicized without any factual or legal basis, and without understanding the complexity of the conflict, feed the terrible antisemitism we are witnessing in Paris, London, Berlin and Turkey.
  • NGOs and their funders-enablers are one of the main pillars of this anti-semitism and they must be held accountable for this.
  • Israeli member of Knesset should take part in the international struggle and engage their counterparts in the European parliament in order to bring to their attention the unreliable character of these NGOs and their statements.