A number of NGOs (non-governmental organizations) have been exploiting the complex issue of Bedouin land claims in the Negev to demonize and delegitimize Israel, including Negev Coexistence Forum for Civil Equality, Adalah, Association for Civil Rights in Israel, Bimkom, Rabbis for Human Rights, Human Rights Watch, and others.

As seen in NGO Monitor’s report,  “NGOs and the Negev Bedouin Issue in the Context of Political Warfare” (November 6, 2013), the activities of political advocacy NGOs have increased significantly, particularly after 2010, including reports, calls for action, media visibility and lobbying in frameworks such as the European Union and the United Nations.

These NGOs use inflammatory rhetoric with unsupported claims, accusing Israel of “apartheid,” “ethnic cleansing,” “racial discrimination,” “disinheritance,” and “human rights violations” against the “indigenous” citizens of the Negev. Many NGOs conflate Bedouin issues with the broader Arab-Israeli conflict, in an effort to isolate the state of Israel in the international arena, as epitomized by the 2001 Durban Strategy of demonization.

Professor Gerald Steinberg noted in his presentation to the Knesset Internal Affairs Committee that, in 2012, approximately NIS 10 million in foreign government funding was provided to highly politicized NGOs, many of which lobby the same governments from which they receive funding, while excluding Israeli officials and dissenting views.

NGO Monitor’s report, “NGOs and the Negev Bedouin Issue in the Context of Political Warfare


Professor Gerald Steinberg’s presentation to the Knesset Internal Affairs Committee.


Media Impact


The Cynical Manipulation of Israel’s Bedouin Citizens, Shira Michael, The Jerusalem Post, November 11, 2013

Tensions Run High During Knesset Debate Over Bedouin Resettlement, Ariel Ben Solomon, The Jerusalem Post, November 14, 2013

Bedouins Plead to Supreme Court: Don’t Throw Us Out to Build Jewish Village, Yonah Jeremy Bob and Ariel Ben Solomon, The Jerusalem Post, November 20, 2013

Israel’s Negev Bedouin Challenge and the Exploitation of Human Rights, Emily Ziedman, Moment Magazine, November 25, 2013

For Boycotters, the ‘Occupation’ Began in 1948, Gerald Steinberg, The Canadian Jewish News, December 6, 2013


In the Negev there is no Expulsion- Only Exploitation, Shira Michael, Walla, November 6, 2013

Report: The Palestinians are Exploiting the Bedouin Controversy, Ariel Kahane, NRG, December 3, 2013

NIF is Playing with Fire, Ben Dror Yemini, NRG, December 7, 2013

Further Reading

The Blood Libel Film, Ben Dror Yemini, The Times of Israel, November 29, 2013

Sound and Fury Masking True Debate Over Bedouin Resettlement, Haviv Rettig Gur, The Times of Israel, December 3, 2013