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May 12, 2015 6:18 pm

How Israeli ‘Human Rights’ Groups Threaten Our Very Existence

avatar by Shimon Ohayon

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A rocket attack on Israel from Gaza. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

The State of Israel was established during a period of intense focus on human rights issues. All the leading political movements during that period dedicated a significant part of their platforms to human rights.

The institutions and laws established in Israel reflect the central place of human rights at the heart of the State’s ideological foundations. It is therefore not surprising that human rights organizations have always been prominent and active in Israeli society.

However, in recent years we have seen the rise of new organizations which, while they call themselves “human rights organizations,” are in fact of a completely different ilk from the tradition. Contrary to what one would assume, these organizations’ activities raise questions as to the sincerity of their concern with human rights, questions that are motivated by the agendas and goals that are guiding them.

These organizations constitute a coordinated coalition, and they have selected a limited number of core issues in which they have invested the greater part of their resources. One major issue is that of the migration of infiltrators into the State of Israel. ‘Human rights’ organizations are doing everything possible to eradicate the Israeli State’s ability to stop this flow of illegal migrants: petitions to the Supreme Court, demonstrations, information centers, and categorical opposition to any law that imposes sanctions on people who cross the border.

Masterminding these efforts is the New Israel Fund, which has created a forum in which members of organizations such as ASSAF (Aid Organization for Refugees and Asylum Seekers in Israel), Physicians for Human Rights, the Hotline for Refugees and Migrants, and others can work together and sometimes operate as a single entity. The stated purpose of the forum is to grant permanent resident status to these migrants. The funding for this forum comes from foreign entities such as the EU, the U.S. State Department, and from the budgets of various European governments.

The result has been the accumulation of approximately 100,000 illegal migrants in Israeli cities, living in poverty and dire conditions and turning entire neighborhoods into hubs of crime. Despite the clear evidence that indicates that these infiltrators were not being persecuted by the regimes in their home countries (for example, masses of migrants were guests at an event in their support held at the home of the South Sudanese Ambassador), these organizations have chosen to present them as “refugees,” and have demanded that Israel should grant them permanent status.

Ironically, recent findings only confirm the true ideological agenda of these organizations. In late march the British Home Office issued a report stating that Eritreans, by far the largest component of the infiltrator population, are actually not subject to persecution in Eritrea by virtue of their having left the country to escape military service.

They are able to return, subject to paying a tax for the service they missed. And since the infiltrators make far more money in Tel Aviv than they would in Eritrea (their real reason for being here), paying a tax is no impediment to their return.

This undercuts the idea that these people are endangered refugees, rather than economic self-seekers. Yet to Israeli NGOs they are stateless, helpless refugees. Of course, what they really represent to these NGOs are ways to diminish the Jewish character of Israel, the ultimate agenda of the NIF and its many funded human rights NGOs.

A second core issue in the activities of these organizations is the “right of Palestinian Arab return.” Groups like Adalah, also supported by the New Israel Fund, and Zochrot, which, while not supported by the NIF, enjoys the support of European governments and NGOs, advocate “Nakba” awareness – which considers the establishment of the national home for the Jewish people a “catastrophe,” and regards Palestinian Arabs as “refugees” who must be restored within Israel’s borders. These displaced people are to be granted citizenship, and will of course (and by design) profoundly impact Israel’s ethnic identity.

The founder of the Zochrot NGO has most incisively formulated the dominant outlook of these organizations: “I don’t know who will want to come back, but whoever wants to – let him come back. And if then there won’t be a Jewish State – then there won’t be one. The concept I prefer is a single state from the river to the sea, in which all the people have rights and the two nations have ties to this land.”

In both cases, those who are being “protected” are in reality being manipulated for the sake of the political agenda of these organizations and their funders.

That agenda is clearly the undermining of the State of Israel as a Jewish and democratic state, by changing the demographic balance in Israel to eliminate its Jewish majority.

Conversely, and not surprisingly, alongside the politically motivated issues on which these ‘human rights organizations’ focus are actual bona fide human rights crises, which these organizations totally ignore.

For example, for years Hamas has been committing crimes against humanity, shooting rockets into population centers, digging terror tunnels leading to Israeli communities, and systematically murdering anyone who opposes it politically within the Gaza Strip. The residents of south Tel Aviv are afraid to leave their homes at night after numerous incidents of rape and severe violence have been committed by infiltrators who harass and intimidate locals, especially the elderly.

On the Temple Mount freedom of worship is denied to Jews, who are prohibited from praying there; recently an Arab attempted to kill a human rights activist who was active there.

In all these cases, so-called ‘human rights Israeli organizations’ have remained silent. In the rare instances when they have spoken out, their response has always been reluctant and half-hearted. Occasionally, their condemnation has referred to “violence on both sides” or to “provocations which led to the attack.”

Once again, and not surprisingly, an important common thread to all these problems is that most of the victims have been Jewish.

One distinguishing feature of this new generation of Israeli ‘human rights organizations’ is extensive foreign funding. Huge amounts are contributed to these organizations from countries and state-like entities such as the UN and the EU, as well as from the New Israel Fund. Many more millions have been funneled by European governmentally-related NGOs, funded by their respective governments.

There is simply no parallel to this extent of intervention by foreign countries in the public activities of a democratic country anywhere else in the world.

Contrary to all logic, this unique state of affairs is fostered by the absence of any legislation that would restrict, or at least regulate, such activities. Such legislation is in fact the norm in other democratic countries, such as the U.S.

This issue has been raised and advanced in Israel, primarily by Im Tirtzu, a Zionist Israeli NGO, which had previously revealed that 16 organizations supported by the New Israel Fund and European countries were responsible for the majority of negative “Israeli” testimonies against Israel and the IDF given to the Goldstone Committee after the Gaza Cast Lead operation of 2009.

Im Tirtzu has issued a number of position papers to counter the narratives slandering Israel, including: Nakba Nonsense, which refutes the Nakba narrative; a report on Palestinian funding of organizations which produced “evidence” against the IDF and Israel during Operation Protective Edge; a report that revealed the organizations behind and the funding of the migrants’ protests; and position papers focusing on foreign governmental funding of Israeli organizations.

A comparison of the issues that are emphasized by these organizations with those they choose to ignore reveals a completely different picture from what one might expect from a human rights organization. In fact, these organizations, which speak in shrill tones in the name of equality, are actually and deliberately perpetrating ethnic discrimination as part of their political agendas.

Organizations that scream in favor of basic living conditions for every infiltrator are encouraging the distress of the residents of entire neighborhoods (and, ironically, of the infiltrators themselves). Adding in the reality of foreign funding produces a frightening picture in which European governments have deliberately sought to promote racist attacks against Jews and their rights in their national home.

The appropriate name for these organizations is actually “organizations for the exploitation of the issue of human rights as a political objective.” Not only the State of Israel, but also its supporters all over the world, must understand the threat that hangs over it from foreign funding intended to prejudice the country’s identity.

Above all, Israel must stop the destructive influence exercised by anti-human-rights “human rights” organizations.

A native of Morocco, Shimon Ohayon was a member of the Knesset from 2013 to 2015. Prior to that he was on the faculty of Bar Ilan University in the Department of Education. He has extensive experience as an administrator in various social action agencies, including serving as the Chairman of the Moroccan Immigrants Association.

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  • H D U Smith

    Check with World Almanac annuals during the mandate years. You will find:
    From 1922 to 1944 (22 years) Egypt population increase: 31.6%
    From 1920 to 1942 (22 years) Iraq population increase: 25.0%
    From 1923 to 1946 (23 years) Syria population increase: 27.8%
    From 1923 to 1946 (23 years) Lebanon population increase: 84.5%
    From 1922 to 1944 (22 years) Palestine Muslim increase: 80.3%

    In 1940’s almanacs they note that Jewish increase is mainly through immigration.
    In 1947 almanac they add (falsely) that Palestinian Muslim increase is through natural increase. This was when the Brits were blocking Ha’apalah with warships.
    Joan Peters, From Time Immemorial,showed that the Brits were lying. Philip Hauser supported her in appendices.

    Questions remain: (a) Why did the Israeli population statisticians oppose Peters, and disregarded Philip Hauser’s support?
    (b) Why did they never acknowledge that Peters was correct?
    (c) Why did the larger world oppose Peters, and never changed their minds?

  • Chui

    Human Rights groups globally are a thorn in the flesh of the moral society. It is increasingly hard to define what they stand for. Because most of their defences have always been around the villains other than the victims. Crime is likely to sore high because the criminal are humans who are sure to be sheltered cosily under the umbrella of human rights lobbyists. Immoralities like gayism, lesbianism, and like filth thrive in this world under the advocasy of human rights supposed values. Nobody is sure what human rights groups stand for. And that includes themselves.

  • Across the EU political parties are responding to the migrant issue, while ISIL says it will send thousands of terrorists into the EU, prepared to attack. European countries with large Muslim populations are noting how many Muslims don’t know how to live in a liberal democratic society. Candidates for public office receive death threats, heads of local authority schools receive death threats. Anyone who disagrees with Islamist extremists risks death threats. Regarding genuine asylum seekers, Australia set the pace. The Australian High Court ruled that no Jew can claim to be an asylum seeker when enterring Australia because the State of Israel has accepted responsibility for any and all Jewish asylum seekers. Let the 24 Arab states agree to accept any Muslim seeking asylum, or the 50+ Muslim states. Those who want to work in the EU can then apply for a work permit in a field where there may be a shortage of workers.

  • Hughie Auman

    I firmly concur with all that Mr Ohayon wrote.
    Now, lets hear a follow-up as to the practical democratic solution to these forementioned threats.
    Anxiously awaiting !

  • I was with you until you wrote “Of course, what they really represent to these NGOs are ways to diminish the Jewish character of Israel, the ultimate agenda of the NIF and its many funded human rights NGOs.” We know all about self-hating Jews there are enough of them in the UK, including Jewish members of parliament but to accuse even NIF of being anti-Israel is ridiculous. Incidentally, the Israeli authorities do not turn up their noses at NIF money. I have seen a NIF executive being courted assiduously by Israel Bonds. The NIF is also very good at collecting money from naive and ill-informedJews in the UK, the USA, etc.

  • manley kiefer

    These so called false “human rights organizations” is an excuse to justify the anti-Semites coming out of the closet using this as a make believe shield to protect them from overtly appearing to be what they are.

  • Any Israeli who live in the country has a right to say what they feel, but I agree it is those who are egged on by anti-Israel groups outside who are a danger. However, I prefer free speech to censorship.

  • Yale

    What really bothers the Europeans and much of the Left is that Israel’s success under coalitions that were composed of the Right and the religious has embarrassed them by demonstrating that their ideological beliefs are actually objectively wrong. Rather than admit that they’re wrong, they seek to destroy the evidence.

  • Linda Rivera

    The funding comes from foreign entities such as the EU, the U.S. State Department, and from the budgets of various European governments.

    The U.S. State Department, European and British leaders and the power-hungry, freedom-destroying, nation-destroying, Jew-hating, fascist, wealthy, unelected evil elites of the devouring satanic monster known as the EU seek the absolute destruction of Israel. And a Second Holocaust of Jews.

    Evil EU elites preside over the destruction of Europe and Britain, allowing into Europe and Britain a never-ending invading Muslim army. ISIS savages declared they are in the boats headed to Europe and said they plan to carry out terror attacks in Europe and Britain.

    ISIS terrorist barbarians have the full APPROVAL of the EU. The EU want ISIS terror attacks to succeed. The EU send out boats to rescue the never-ending invading Muslim army and ISIS terrorists. And announced that none will be turned away.

    Millions, hundreds of millions of hostile Muslim infidel-haters and ISIS fiends are invited to invade Europe by the EU.

    The EU are utterly evil.

  • Debra Michels

    Wow! This is really important – who is responsible for giving this information to people in the Knesset or anywhere else where this kind of activity – treachery – can be exposed and stopped?