(Jerusalem) – As documented in NGO Monitor’s detailed report on HRW, Marc Garlasco, HRW’s “senior military expert” in the “Emergencies Division”, has written numerous reports condemning Israel which combine unreliable Palestinian claims and pseudo-technical analyses. In addition to his HRW work, Garlasco is an active writer on The Guardian website and other blogs. Garlasco’s professional credentials appear to be greatly overstated, and his work contributes to the overall bias and lack of credibility in HRW’s reports on Israel.

Now, Garlasco has also been exposed as an avid collector of Nazi memorabilia and fetishist. Omri Ceren (Mere Rhetoric) writes that he is “obsessed with the color and pageantry of Nazism, has published a detailed 430 page book on Nazi war paraphernalia, and participates in forums for Nazi souvenir collectors.” This activity was not limited to earlier periods in his life but continues in parallel to his work for HRW, much of which focuses on Israel.

This background, when combined with his central role in the condemnations of Israel under false banners of “human rights” violations and “war crimes”, shows that Garlasco is entirely inappropriate as a human rights reporter. His HRW publications and activities include:

  •  Involvement in writing the 2004 “Razing Rafah” report used by HRW to justify participation in the Caterpillar boycott campaign;
  • The high profile “investigation” into the Gaza Beach incident in 2006, which falsely condemned Israel and included numerous contradictions;
  • The report on white phosphorous use in the recent Gaza War, which revealed his lack of expertise in this area;
  • The June 30 2009 publication of his “investigation” of Israeli use of drones to deliver precision-guided warheads, with numerous errors, such as relying on Palestinian claims to have heard and seen weapons that are neither audible nor visible in the circumstances claimed by Garlasco.

Given the evidence of Garlasco’s lack of credibility, HRW officials have an obligation to submit all of his activities to independent investigation. In parallel, the numerous journalists and others who repeated and gave credence to these reports should now publish retractions.

Editors Notes:

Click here to view NGO Monitor’s report “Experts or Ideologues?”

Click here to view the NGO Monitor review of HRW’s 2008 activities

Other recent publications and reports by NGO Monitor include:-

The Goldstone ‘Fact Finding’ Mission and the Role of Political NGOs
– September 7, 2009

HRW’s ‘Rain of Fire’:  Neither Thorough Nor Impartial
– April 2, 2009

HRW and White Phosphorous: Condemn First, Correct (Maybe) Later
– January 14, 2009

Amnesty and HRW Lebanon War Claims Discredited
– Dec 28, 2006