Funding anti-Semitism, denies human rights

  • NGO MONITOR logo
Funding anti-Israel activity denies vital funds required for human rights issues – so says respected think-tank “NGO Monitor” who released a comprehensive new report Monday in advance of the 2015 Global Forum for Combating Anti-Semitism in Jerusalem. The report on double standards & “egregious anti-Semitic activities,” gives extensive evidence of rising anti-Semitism in Europe. NGO’s & governments “continue to fund these groups with hundreds of millions of dollars, pounds, euros, and kroners.” PDF OF 22-PAGE REPORT.
by ANT KATZ | May 12, 2015

"NGO Monitor's research shows that by funding NGOs that engage in anti-Semitic activities and rhetoric, governments highlight a persistent double standard: hatred of Jews is tolerated in a way that would be unthinkable for other racial, ethnic, or religious groups." stated Professor Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor.

NGO MONITOR logo"Jewish and Israeli targets are often denied the right to define what constitutes discrimination against them." The Report, published in full as a PDF on this website, also highlights the rising levels of hatred in Europe.

RIGHT: Professor Gerald Steinberg, founder and president of NGO Monitor - see  "Who and what is NGO Monitor?" below


NGO Monitor’s detailed new report details the cost of international, Palestinian, and Israeli NGOs (non-governmental organisations) that engage in egregious anti-Semitic activities and rhetoric.

It also highlights the rapidly-rising levels of hatred in Europe. According to the report, despite the extensive evidence of NGO anti-Semitism, which contradicts claims to promote human rights and humanitarian agendas, governments continue to fund these groups with hundreds of millions of dollars, pounds, euros, and kroner.

Incidents discussed in the Report include the July 2014 "Open Letter for the People of Gaza", published in the leading British medical journal “The Lancet”. The letter, which accused Israel of "war crimes" while ignoring Hamas' crimes of rocket fire and terror tunnels, was signed by Drs Mads Gilbert, Iain Chalmers, Paola Manduca, Swee Ang Chai and others associated with highly politicised NGOs and anti-Israel campaigning.

Manduca and Ang promoted a virulently anti-Semitic video by the white supremacist, David Duke. The editor-in-chief of The Lancet, Dr Richard Horton, never apologised for the letter, and the article is still available on The Lancet website. 

NGO Monitor's publication also documents the inaction of NGOs to report on or condemn anti-Semitism. On April 19, 2015, Amnesty International's UK branch held its Annual General meeting. Out of 17 proposed motions, the only resolution that was rejected called on Amnesty-UK to "Campaign against anti-Semitism in the UK," as well as "Lobby the UK Government to tackle the rise in anti-Semitic attacks in Britain", and "monitor anti-Semitism closely".


LEFT: Despite extensive evidence of NGO anti-Semitism, the new report says governments continue to fund NGOs with hundreds of millions of dollars

In this context, it is notable that Amnesty-UK employee Kristyan Benedict has repeatedly used social media platforms to circulate anti-Semitic content. In addition, this report documents ongoing anti-Semitic content among church groups involved in anti-Israel demonisation. 


"NGOs and governments must enact clear policies and establish where campaigns regarding Israel cross the line," said Professor Steinberg. "Funders bear responsibility for the hate-filled activities and rhetoric of their grantees. Such funding, as well, must end," he said.

Who and what is NGO Monitor?

The organisation was founded in 2002 – a few months after the UN “World Conference Against Racism” in Durban. The 1 500 organisations that participated in the NGO Forum at this conference adopted a "Final Declaration" that revived the notorious 1975 UN resolution declaring Zionism to be a form of racism. In the Durban declaration, the NGOs painted Israel as an “Apartheid” state, guilty of “war crimes”, genocide, and ethnic cleansing, and similar accusations.

NGO MONITOR logoOn this basis, the document called for the international community to impose a complete and total isolation of Israel as an apartheid state through boycotts, exploitation of legal frameworks, and other measures.

Right: Download the 22-PAGE REPORT - it will make a fascinating Shabbos read. As it is in a PDF format, you can also copy the link and forward it to friends and family.

As a student of international politics and power, Professor Gerald Steinberg, founder and president of NGO Monitor, discovered that these NGOs were using the façade of the 1948 Universal Declaration of Human Rights to systematically promote a radical ideological agenda, and becoming very influential.

“As an academic, I looked for analysis of NGO power, and after finding almost no substantive work in this area, initiated my own research,” explains Prof Steinberg.

 “Large-scale funding was clearly central to this development, and I found that significant support came from Western governments, primarily in Europe (and, at that time, also Canada), as well as major foundations.”

No accountability & transparency 

However, he says, it was apparent that most donors had no independent information on what was being done with this funding – the NGO network was largely immune from the requirements of accountability and transparency.

In parallel, the leading NGOs involved in the Durban Conference, including Human Rights Watch and Amnesty International, were moving forward with a broad campaign to delegitimise and demonise Israel. These and other NGOs were clearly manipulating human rights principles, and the media, as well as many diplomats and academics, generally blindly accepted and quoted the unsubstantiated NGO allegations and publications. It was this initial realisation and research that expanded into the founding of NGO Monitor.


NGO Monitor’s mission & goals

NGO Monitor is a research organisation which provides detailed information and analysis regarding the reports and activities of NGOs claiming to advance human rights, particularly in the Middle East. This process, says Prof Steinberg, “involves finding and disclosing funding sources for politicised NGOs, and noting when their rhetoric and reports are inconsistent with their claimed principles or missions”.

He adds that as the only independent source of NGO evaluations and accountability, their research is often cited by media, government officials in Israel and abroad, diplomats, and other organisational heads.

“While political NGOs and their supporters often react angrily to our reports, the research is always shown to be entirely accurate and complete,” he says.

NGO Monitor is still the only such research framework in the world, and the issues are extremely wide and growing. Over the next five to ten years, says Steinberg, they hope to expand their capabilities and impact, “in order to end the exploitation of human rights as a weapon against Israel; establish best practices to offset NGO reporting bias and double standards; and promote the restoration of the universal moral foundations”.

The principled guidelines that the organisation wrote were influential in changing the funding practices of the Ford Foundation after the Durban fiasco.

More recently, the leaders of Jewish Federations and the New Israel Fund have also started to adopt NGO Monitor’s recommendations, particularly regarding ending support for groups involved in BDS and demonisation.

“This co-operation across the Jewish political spectrum (with the exception of the extremes) in funding guidelines for NGOs is a major objective,” says Prof Steinberg.

No accountability & transparency

No accountability & transparency

No accountability & transparency

1 Comment

  1. 1 Harold 15 May
    Why are we surprised ?
    Prof Robert Wistrich called anti semitism " The Longest Hatred "

    It will never be expunged from the Non Jewish world and we will just have to manage it as best we can by continued attempts at education of the masses and by being vigilant when it arises.


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