Major NGOs continued to issue numerous statements condemning Israel’s policy on Gaza, while minimizing terrorism, including the continued rocket attacks on Israeli civilians. These statements also ignored the attempts by the Hamas-led government to manipulate and exacerbate the situation.
Human Rights Watch repeated the charge of "collective punishment" by Israel in its photo campaign on Gaza fuel cuts. [See NGO Monitor’s report on HRW in 2007, which highlights HRW’s disproportionate use of multimedia to demonize Israel and biased application of legal terms such as "collective punishment".]
Gisha published two statements — a news release on April 14, 2008 and a fact sheet on April 17, 2008. As in the past, both publications ignore Israel’s ongoing commitment to supply Gaza with essential provisions, even under attack; and repeat distortions of international law, including the allegations of “collective punishment” (a repeated theme of political NGOs) and claims that Israel is legally obligated to supply Gaza. (See "Is Israel bound by international law to supply utilities, Goods and Services to Gaza," JCPA Issue Briefs, Vol 7 no. 33, February 2008 and "International Law and Gaza: The assault on Israel’s right to Self Defense," JCPA January Vol 7. No, 29, both Avraham Bell)
The pro-Palestinian International Commission of Jurists (ICJ) concluded a "second high level mission to the Occupied Palestinian Territories and Israel" in March, 2008. Their report discussed "witnessing the devastating human rights and humanitarian consequences the Israeli Government’s siege has imposed on Gaza’s civilian population," and that "Israeli practices amount to collective punishment of the Palestinian population." However, the statement does acknowledge "indiscriminate rocket attacks …against civilians..[which] put civilians at risk and impose a state of permanent fear," although it condemns Israel’s "disproportionate and excessive military response."