RIGHTS GONE WRONG
Human Rights Watch ( Comment, October 16) was founded over 30 years ago with the admirable aim of protecting political dissidents from oppressive regimes, but today its leaders have lost sight of its original ethos. Nowhere more so than in regard to the Middle East.
In a region dominated by regimes that horrendously violate human rights, HRW has instead chosen to single out Israel for condemnation, often using unreliable and politically motivated witnesses to do so. Not only have they failed to allocate proper resources to monitoring the dictatorships that are rife throughout the region but senior HRW officials even recently went to Riyadh to raise funds from people associated with the Saudi regime, emphasising HRW’s work demonising Israel while doing so.
It has also been revealed that HRW’s MidEast division deputy director supported comments sympathetic to the 1972 Munich Olympic massacre of Israeli athletes, and HRW’s “senior military analyst” for the MidEast is an avid collector of Nazi memorabilia which he referred to as “so cool” .
In order that HRW can once again fulfil the role for which it was created, we call upon HRW’s board members to institute a full independent review of the organisation for which they are responsible.
This should include urgently reviewing the conduct of those senior officials, particularly in the Middle East division, who have been instrumental in HRW’s decline, and the adoption of firm guidelines to prevent such abuses in future. Elie Wiesel; (Professor) Alan Dershowitz; R. James Woolsey; Elliott Abrams; (Professor) Judea Pearl; Tom Gross; Douglas Murray International Advisory Board members c/o email@example.com