How 'NGO Tactics' Shape US Condemnation of Israel

New report reveals anti-Israeli NGO actions to delegitimize Israeli self-defense, which has led to US and UN 'excessive force' claims.

Ari Yashar ,

Border Police respond to Jerusalem Central Station stabbing (file)
Border Police respond to Jerusalem Central Station stabbing (file)
Hadas Parush/Flash 90

Israeli security forces have in recent weeks been forced to deal with a growing wave of Arab terror, and in parallel, with a growing wave of international condemnation which criticizes the shooting of terrorists conducting lethal attacks as "excessive force."

The criticism has been heard from the UN, UNRWA, and on Wednesday was echoed by the US State Department. Experts argue that the condemnation has been fueled by anti-Israeli NGOs, which have published the claims in international forums.

NGO Monitor, a Jerusalem-based research institute, released a report on Thursday detailing how NGOs have raised the international uproar in their attempts to delegitimize Israeli defensive actions, while ignoring how emergency responders save the lives of wounded Arab terrorists.

"These statements are central to the tactic of politicized NGOs seeking to criminalize Israeli self-defense," said Professor Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor, on Thursday.

"The NGO-led campaigns are another example of the false allegations that demonize Israel, feed BDS, and prepare the ground for legal cases, or 'lawfare,'" added Steinberg.

The new report also details how NGOs even question or reject whether the Arab terror attacks even took place, despite video evidence and the presence of seriously wounded Israelis.

"There are many examples of NGOs distorting reality to promote their political agendas," pointed out Steinberg. "As in many other instances involving the Arab-Israeli conflict, their attacks on Israel stand in direct contrast to the human rights principles these groups claim to advance. Worse yet, some NGOs are ignoring terror and rewarding violence."

One example in the report details how a group of Israeli NGOs including B'Tselem, Adalah, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, and Yesh Din, most of which are funded by the New Israel Fund, described "a worrying trend to use firearms to kill Palestinians who have attacked Israelis or are suspected of such attacks."

The NGOs said that public "support for such actions endorses the killing of Palestinians in the Territories and in Israel."

Likewise Amnesty International condemned "the widespread use of excessive force by Israeli forces against demonstrators across the occupied West Bank."

That condemnation came despite the NGO's acknowledgement that "Palestinian demonstrators have thrown rocks and firebombs towards Israeli forces in many demonstrations, and there are reports that Palestinians have shot at Israeli forces in isolated cases."

Human Rights Watch for its part claimed it has "documented the unlawful use of force by Israeli security forces...over many years." The NGO's Director Kenneth Roth tweeted, "Horrible deadly cycle: 'lone wolf' Palestinian attacks, excessively lethal Israeli response."