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The Durban Strategy, NGOs and Human Rights

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NGOs define human rights, 'war crimes', violations of international law, etc. ... apartheid state in which Israel's brand of apartheid as a crime against humanity... – PowerPoint PPT presentation

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Title: The Durban Strategy, NGOs and Human Rights


1
The Durban Strategy, NGOs and Human Rights Gerald
Steinberg Conference on Ethical Norms in a
Political World NGOs, Human Rights NGO
Monitor www.ngo-monitor.org
2
THE POLITICAL POWER OF NGOs
www.ngo-monitor.org
  • Non-Governmental Organizations are powerful
    political actors
  • NGOs define human rights, war crimes,
    violations of international law, etc.
  • NGOs are not subject to accountability or
    checks and balances
  • NGOs have no systematic basis for determining
    the boundary between legitimate criticism and
    demonization

3
www.ngo-monitor.org
NGO SUPERPOWERS Annual budgets
Human Rights Watch                             
56 million  Amnesty International (23.7
million)  43 million   Christian Aid   
(58.5 million)  90 million Oxfam  
368 million  MSF/ Doctors Without (366
million) 468 million Borders
4
www.ngo-monitor.org
NGO POWER ON DISPLAY DURBAN SEPTEMBER 2001
5
www.ngo-monitor.org
DURBAN CONFERENCE NGO DECLARATION
  • We declare Israel as a racist, apartheid state
    in which Israels brand of apartheid as a crime
    against humanity
  • we declare and call for an immediate end to
    the Israeli systematic perpetration of racist
    crimes including war crimes, acts of genocide and
    ethnic cleansing
  • "Call upon the international community to
    impose a policy of complete and total isolation
    of Israel as an apartheid state"

6
www.ngo-monitor.org
NGOs
Durban
Media
Jenin
UNHCR
UN and Diplomats
UNGA and ICJ
Boycott and Divestment
Academia
7
www.ngo-monitor.org
NGOs and the Jenin Massacre Myths April 2002
  • Derrick Pounder (Amnesty) on the BBC the
    signs pointed to a massacre
  • Roth (HRW) and Kahn (Amnesty) spoke about
    Israeli war crimes, erasing the context of
    terror
  • Christian Aid film Peace under Siege dedicated
    to Palestinian victims of Jenin

8
NGOs, ACADEMIC BOYCOTTS AND DIVESTMENT CAMPAIGNS
  • SABEEL Ecumenical Liberation Theology Center, in
    cooperation with Jeff Halper (ICAHD)
  • Mennonite Central Committee (CIDA)
  • al Mezan (SDC, Sweden, Netherlands Representative
    Office,)
  • Miftah (European governments)

9
www.ngo-monitor.org
RESEARCHING NGO AGENDAS HRW IN THE MIDDLE EAST
2004
Data based on the number and relative weight of
documents produced in 2004, compared to other
countries in the Middle East, and excluding
Iraq-related documents, of which actually
pertained to US policy.
10
www.ngo-monitor.org
CAPITAL RESEARCH CENTER STUDY OF AMNESTY
INTERNATIONAL
  • AI has adopted double standards on human
    rightsand propaganda against America and
    Israel. 
  • http//www.capitalresearch.org/pubs/pubs.asp?ID5
    11

11
HRWs use of Durban Rhetoric- 2005.
  • In HRW Middle East publications, Israel was the
    only country charged with "collective punishment"
    and "war crimes".
  • Israel charged with "grave" and /or "serious"
    human rights "violations" and/or "abuses" 32
    times Egypt 22 all other countries fewer than
    10.

12
www.ngo-monitor.org
WHO SETS THE AGENDA? REPORTS ON ISRAEL/PA AND
SUDAN SEPTEMBER 2000- 2004
13
QUESTIONSPOLITICS, HUMAN RIGHTS AND THE ROLE OF
NGOs
www.ngo-monitor.org
  • What is the status of NGOs in international
    diplomacy? What is the basis for their role in
    the UN?
  • Where is the line between legitimate criticism
    and demonization rhetoric -- war crimes,
    violation of international law, collective
    punishment, excessive /disproportionate
    force, etc.
  • How can NGO officials and funders be held
    accountable?

14
www.ngo-monitor.org
QUESTIONS NGOs and Ideology
  • To what degree do NGO officials use universal
    norms to pursue their own particular objectives?
  • To what degree do NGO officials promote
    post-colonial and post-nationalist ideologies,
    assigning virtue to victims, and guilt to
    others?
  • To what degree to NGOs provide informed criticism
    vs. becoming parties to the conflict?

15
Human Rights NGOs and the Media Is there a Halo
Effect?
www.ngo-monitor.org
  • Do what degree do journalists examine the
    credibility of NGO reports and claims?
  • Are NGO claims credible? What are their
    research capabilities?
  • To what degree do their political and
    ideological biases determine NGO reports and
    allegations?

16
Who Funds Political NGOs?
www.ngo-monitor.org
  • NGO participation in Durban was funded by the
    Ford Foundation, other private funds, European
    governments, Canada, and others
  • Despite pledges by Ford, funding for most Durban
    NGOs continues
  • EU, Canada, Swiss, Japanese, etc funding for NGO
    under Partnership for Peace, Human Rights and
    Palestinian civil society

17
EUPFP "PARTNERSHIP FOR PEACE PROGRAMME" AWARDED
IN JULY 2005 - Israeli NGOs -- 3.6 Million Euros
18
EUPFP "PARTNERSHIP FOR PEACE PROGRAMME" AWARDED
IN JULY 2005 - Israeli NGOs -- 3.6 Million Euros
CONTINUED
19
EIDHR (HUMAN RIGHTS) GRANTS -- AUGUST 2005
20
Examining NGO Credibility
www.ngo-monitor.org
  • Most global NGOs (Amnesty, HRW) have essentially
    no independent research capability.
  • They rely on Palestinian eyewitness testimony
    and journalists who use the same sources.

21
www.ngo-monitor.org
NGO Credibility
Amnesty International has reported that Israeli
soldiers deliberately aim at Palestinian
children. When asked to document that they
couldn't come up with a single case. Human
Rights Watch has made up stories that have had no
corroboration whatsoever. .. I spoke with
Donatella Rovera, who is AI's researcher and
asked her to provide the data Rovera
acknowledged that the report was based on
anecdotal information, from Palestinian NGOs.
It is impossible for any outside researcher to
replicate AI's study and to confirm or disconfirm
its conclusions. - Prof. Alan Dershowitz
22
HRWs Credibility In Gaza
www.ngo-monitor.org
  • On June 13, HRWs Mark Garlasco held a press
    conference in Gaza claimed evidence pointing to
    Israeli responsibility for the Friday beach
    incident
  • Garlasco was also the author of HRWs Razing
    Rafah report (11/2004), which was highly
    political and contained numerous inaccuracies.
  • How does the press verify Garlascos allegations?

23
www.ngo-monitor.org
NGO Anti-Semitism
24
Addressing NGO Political Agendas
www.ngo-monitor.org
  • Code of Conduct/Ethics for NGOs.
  • Application of a single universal human rights
    standard equally to all countries, including
    Israel
  • Accountability
  • Transparency
  • Education

25
www.ngo-monitor.org
Watching The Watchers NGO MONITOR
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