Tuesday, January 4, 2011

Hamas Contradicts Swedish-backed NGO’s Anti-Israeli Claims

In an op-ed article published this week, Anne Herzberg, legal advisor to NGO Monitor points out that recently Hamas released its own casualty statistics for the Gaza War of December 2008- January 2009. These figures are nearly identical to the Israeli government statistics cited on the number of military vs. civilian casualties:
-“According to the data gathered by the Research Department of the Israel Defense Intelligence, there were 1166 names of Palestinians killed during Operation Cast Lead. 709 of them are identified as Hamas terror operatives, amongst them several from various other terror organizations.
Herzberg cites a November 2010 Al-Hayat interview of Hamas’ Interior Minister Fathi Hamad in which the Hamas minister “acknowledged that 600-700 Hamas members were killed in the Gaza fighting – more than double the number of combatants published by the NGOs’ and Richard Goldstone’s unreliable version of events.”

One of the main NGOs engaged in “lawfare” against the Israeli government and the Israel Defense Forces is the Palestinian Center for Human Rights (PCHR). Regular readers of this blog will not be surprised that PCHR is only one of a number of anti-Israeli, pro-terror NGOs which receive support from the Swedish government.  The PCHR’s  anti- Israel  propaganda report opens with this false claim in its lengthy title:
-“Confirmed figures reveal the true extent of the destruction inflicted upon the Gaza Strip; Israel’s offensive resulted in 1,417 dead, including 926 civilians, 255 police officers, and 236 fighters.”
Actually, nothing is “confirmed” about these figures. In addition to the inflated casualty figures, notice that the total number of “fighters” is about one-third of the actual number, and that “police officers” are not included as combatants, which is also inaccurate. (Perhaps the NGOs relied on the fact that many Hamas “fighters” were intentionally not in uniform—contradicting accepted rules of combat by failing to distinguish themselves from the civilian population—and thus were easily counted as “civilian” casualties.)
So-called “statistics” like these were used by NGOs such as PCHR to smear the Israeli military, which worked hard to minimize civilian casualties. The IDF actually made cell-phone calls and dropped leaflets to citizens in dangerous areas, warning citizens to vacate areas to be targeted in order to reduce civilian casualties. Conversely, Hamas urged or threatened citizens to remain in areas which the IDF had alerted, increasing the civilian death toll.
NGOs’ false statistical and other claims provided impetus for and the basis of results of the U.N.’s Goldstone Commission inquiry. Herzberg states:
-“NGOs issued dozens of publications purporting to document the number of Palestinian civilian casualties…To pursue their political objectives, NGOs often deliberately and grossly inflated the Palestinian count, mislabeling combatants as civilians or “children,” and made other false accusations.”
Herzberg points out a number of hypocrisies evident in the reports issued by NGOs such as PCHR. We note that these include failing to criticize Hamas for:
·       firing rockets continually at the Israeli civilian population,
·       recruiting and using underage minors as combatants,
·       failing to protect the Christian minority population in Gaza, and
·       severely restricting the rights of women.
PCHR’s report based on falsified information is still posted on its website, making it clear that there is more interest at PCHR in pursuing an agenda than in pursuing truth or justice. The question for the Swedish government is: Why are you shelling out taxpayer money for propaganda even Hamas contradicts?
Additional information is available on Swedish-supported, anti-Israeli NGOs . More info on the Gaza War  can be found here and here.

1 comment:

  1. Hej

    En utmärkt artikel, speciellt för de som instinktivt fattar att det är något som är fel med de fakta som palestinierna och deras fränder kör ut på marknaden.

    Tyvärr lär de som redan beslutat sig för att palestinierna har rätt i allt och att Israel är ett imperialismens verktyg inte bli påverkade av bloggposten. Men det var det väl ingen som trodde.