NGO Monitor Responds

July, 05 2011

By Naftali Balanson, NGO Monitor (From the July/August Issue of Moment)

Letty Cottin Pogrebin’s uncritical piece on the Israeli NGO known as Breaking the Silence, or BTS (“The IDF’s Silent Whistle-Blowers,” May/June 2011), omits crucial information about the group. A significant portion of the organization’s activities targets foreign audiences, not Israeli public opinion, while demonizing the Israeli army. Events in Sweden, Ireland and the U.S. (in one case, Pakistani and Egyptian diplomats were in attendance) are part of the BTS contribution to the global de-legitimization campaign.

The absurdity of BTS faux-suffering peaked with its nomination for the EU’s Sakharov Prize for Freedom of Thought. In sharp contradistinction to BTS, the other nominees were real dissidents and opponents of totalitarian regimes, including a Cuban who had conducted 23 hunger strikes and others who had languished in prison. In the words of an Italian newspaper, “Israeli pacifists risk at the most coming late to their Tel Aviv café.”

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4 thoughts on “NGO Monitor Responds

  1. sue swartz says:

    Oh please. Are you really saying that the 700 Israeli soldiers who have provided testimony to Breaking the Silence in the last decade are all Tel Aviv pacifists and Israel de-legitimizers? I’ve been on tours with BTS — they do not hesitate to criticize Palestinians nor do they revel in talking about the “bad” IDF. Maybe it just drives you crazy that they have told the truth about their experiences serving in the West Bank. Since when is the truth a bad thing? Or perhaps they’re liars to boot?

  2. sue – here is a one minute piece that was on israeli tv a few weeks ago about breaking the silence. i think the points that they make bear consideration. it certainly is how i feel – i have been here 26 years, and have served in the IDF for more than 12 years in exclusively arab areas with some of the most criminal arab terrorists out there. never among my unit (of about 90+ people) was there anything like this.

  3. גדעון says:

    NGO Monitor is been lead by a Professor from the religious university “Bar-Ilan” that one of there ex student killed the Israeli Prime Minster Rabin.
    In this Professor home page of his university, there are regular newspaper articles, in between his professional work. There so called objective and professional view should be taken in consideration to there truth believes.
    Does this site seems appropriate for an academic faculty in a university ?

    I would love as well to know, it Mr Balanson did a full army service?

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