Jeffrey Goldberg Smears Human Rights Watch

LindsayLindsay Beyerstein over at her blog dissects Goldberg’s claims of corruption at HRW:

A non-profit calling itself NGO Monitor picked up on the story nearly two months ago in a post entitled, “HRW Raises Funds in Saudia Arabia by Demonizing Israel.” The author was incensed by the following passage in the Arab News story:

Human Rights Watch provided the international community with evidence of Israel using white phosphorus and launching systematic destructive attacks on civilian targets. Pro-Israel pressure groups in the US, the European Union and the United Nations have strongly resisted the report and tried to discredit it,” said Sarah Leah Whitson, director of HRW’s Middle East and North Africa Division. [AN]

That’s exactly what happened. HRW presented evidence that Israel was exploding white phosphorous shells in heavily populated areas of Gaza and inflicting hideous burns on civilians. Pro-Israel pressure groups absolutely freaked out about the HRW report and did their best to discredit it. HRW defended its work.

The IDF stopped using white phosphorus in the middle of the occupation after media reports revealed its effects on civilians. Yesterday, HRW published accounts of Israeli soldiers who admit using white phosphorous indescriminately in Gaza under unprecedently loose rules of engagement. HRW, FTW.

Predicatably, Israeli officials denounced HRW for its latest report.

Would it surprise you to learn that NGO Monitor is a pro-Israeli pressure group? According to his official bio, the group’s founder and executive director, Professor Gerald Steinberg is a consultant for the Israeli Ministry of Foreign Affairs and serves on a steering committee sponsored by the office of the Israeli Prime Minister.