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Tel Aviv University
Tel Aviv U's B'Tselem, an Extreme-Leftist Group Disguised as Keeper of the Gate of Universal Human Rights
 B’Tselem and Its True Colors – Extreme Leftist Israeli
Group disguised as “Keeper of the Gate of Universal Human




– This article is an amalgamation of three articles written in Hebrew by
the journalist Jonathan Dahoah-Halevi,  as they appeared in
http://www.news1.co.il/Home/L02-S-00281-00.html, and edited to give it
wholeness as an article in itself; 


– About B’Tselem, from “NGO Monitor”

“Analysts have shown that B’Tselem’s methodology is problematic,
often inconsistent, and reflects the organization’s political agenda. The
organization identifies casualties according to their supposed activity at
the moment of death, and therefore those “killed while not engaged in
hostilities” – including terrorists, terror leaders and organizers, and
rioters – are occasionally mislabeled “civilians.” Relies on
statistics and reports of other NGOs, despite the political agendas and
credibility problems of these other groups.” 


– Mr. Dahoah-Halevi and B’Tselem – In an act of true journalism,
Dahoah-Halevi sent queries to B’Tselem regarding all the
issues detailed here, queries which were left unanswered time after time.
In one instance though, the infamous Ba’alusha family massacre of Dec.
2008, committed by fellow Palestinian rivals, act that went by without any
mention from B’Tselem, contrary to what B’Tselem falsely claims, when
all the main media venues mentioned it – the organization, in a defiant
and arrogant act of condescension so characteristic of such elitist,
patronizing and snobbish Leftist organizations, chose to react to
Dahoah-Halevi’s article about this lamentable lack of re/action on its
part, employing the means of last resort: falsehoods, lies and utterly
ridiculous accusations directed against Mr. Dahoah-Halevi.  

I condemn strongly B’Tselem’s dilettante, childish reaction. From an
organization claiming what it claims, more, and truth, is expected. 




B’Tselem has some problematic postulates. 


First among them, is the premise that it does not have a political agenda.
Let’s see. Is this true, correct, accurate and faithful to the
organization’s statement? I think not! 


Mr. Dahoah-Halevi has investigated for two years (2006-2008; DB) and published part of the results on
www.news1.co.il. Beside other important and interesting things, the
investigation shows its political goals.  


Prof. Anat Biletzki, (anatbi@post.tau.ac.il) a principal figure in B’Tselem – high-ranking
management member and past chairwoman (2001-2006), is herself exposing the
connection between the organization’s activity in the field of human
rights and its political goals. According to it, B’Tselem supports the
implementation of the Palestinian “right of return” to what is now
Israel and the final goal according to Biletzki, is the annulment of the
State of Israel and the establishment of “one state” that will include
also the West Bank and the Gaza Strip. 


B’Tselem’s CEO, Jessica Montel, claims adamantly that the organization
does not take any political stance that is connected to the
Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Is that so? Prof. Anat Biletzki, who,
apparently, is the ideological life and soul of the organization and the
main influence in it, is supplying the key that explains the connection
between B’Tselem’s ‘innocent’ activity in the field of human rights
and its conspicuous political aspect.   


In an interview to the bulletin Precis (MIT – Massachusetts Institute of
Technology, Winter 2007 issue), Biletzki stated and detailed broadly the
objectives of B’Tselem, and, among other things, she remarked that the
placing of a delegation of the organization in Washington, DC, is intended
to influence the politics and the politicians in the USA:  


“What I say, is that our political conversation needs to be a
conversation on human rights and activity [in the field of] the human
rights needs to see itself not only as its envelope but as the real essence
of the politics. 

“All these things that I've not spoken about and that I've spoken about
are literally human rights means doing politics because how else could or
should one do politics?... How else if we are not worried about human right
can we talk about working for peace? Because talking about work for peace
has to be talk about work for a just peace and a just peace cannot ignore
in any sense human rights violations. So what I'm saying is that our
political conversation has to become a human rights conversation but a
human rights work has to take upon itself not just the cloak but the real
substance of politics.” 


To understand from where those things come, one has only to point to a
self-definition by Biletzki on herself: [She is] non-Zionist [and is seeing
herself both as leftist], Communist and Marxist, and [as] humanistic: 

“I see myself both as a leftist – a communist, a Marxist – and as a


 This, by the way, for anyone who is acquainted with the Communist
ideology and philosophy, is an oxymoron, because the whole Communist
edifice is based on the Leninist conception of the totalitarian
Dictatorship of the Proletariat, which, in turn, makes use, as a directive,
of brute, unrestrained ultimate violence and terror aimed at the
elimination of all other societal classes from the frame of the governing
of the state, and installing by sheer force and coercion the Proletariat
class as sole and absolute ruler of it. 


Adding, she says, “Observing the matter from a political point of view,
we understand that the issues are very complex.  

“What has happened now... it is impossible physically [the two state
solution] you travel the ground you travel the land and you see that there
is no way getting physically the two states solution…. I'm afraid that
we'll go another way, deeply it will be apartheid, I think that Abbas
[Mahmoud Abbas "Abu Mazen" chairman of the Palestinian Authority] and many
Palestinians are so tired and so demolished that they might sign onto
something which will be called a Palestinian State. The world will wave the
flags of hurray, they will say that we have two states and then we will
have to try to persuade the world that that is not a just solution. That is
hard if the Palestinians or some of the Palestinians will accept that…So
we are looking politically… it will be very, very complicated, it will be
our job to tell them that this is now apartheid, it will be a much harder
fight after the world said that they had taken on the two states


So, Prof. Biletzki does not think that the solution of two states is
unattainable, but sees it as her duty to fight resolutely against the
implementation of a political arrangement between Israel and the
Palestinian Authority consisting of two states living side by side in the
territory of the State of Israel and Palestine. She adopts a patronizing
approach towards the Palestinians and claims, actually, that the
Palestinian leadership does not have any authority to concede parts of the
Palestine area to Israel as a Jewish state or as a state for all its
residents. As far as she is concerned, the single solution is to be found
in the establishment of “one state” that will annul the State of Israel
and will establish in its stead another, multinational, state, in the
boundaries of current Israel, the West Bank and Gaza Strip.  


Biletzki: “So, sadly, we have to be patronizing and tell him that he has
no right to agree to it... I once took part in a discussion with Sari
Nusseibeh. He said he was willing to forgo the right of return for the sake
of his freedom, and he asked who was I to tell him he couldn’t do that.
After all, he said, the right of return is his own, so it's also his right
to forgo it in exchange for freedom. I was nonplussed when he said this,
but I slept on it, and the next day I told him he's naïve if he thinks
that yielding up his right of return will give him his freedom. But more
important, I said that I fight for the right of return not for him, but for
my own society: that it should become a just society. In order to transform
ourselves into non-occupiers, we must recognize the rights of the


Under the banner of human rights, of course, B’Tselem supports
unwaveringly the implementation of the right of return of Palestinian
refugees to the State of Israel and it decided to engage itself in this


For this, Biletzki is willing to employ a transparent manipulation: “I
think that the only way to allay the Israeli fears is to talk about ‘the
rights of the refugees’. Even when you talk to Leftists, everyone will
agree that the refugees have rights, but when you talk about ‘the right
of return’, oh no, heaven forbid!”   


B’Tselem, unwaveringly also, supports the initiative of the infamous
spying-for-Hizb’allah MK Bishara to change the constitutional structure
of Israel; one can make a successful guess in what direction.  


Apropos Bishara, she signed a petition which she distributed (May 13,
2007) among Israeli academicians in which she expresses her absolute faith
in Bishara’s version of the spying affair and refutes that of the GSS
(General Security Services). 


As another political act, because this has nothing to do with human
rights, Biletzki demands the evacuation of all the settlements in the West
Bank and the return to the pre-67 lines. As chairman of the B’Tselem
directorate, in an interview with the magazine Challenge, she refutes the
Gaza disengagement efforts at the time as traps and not the real thing (and
even betted on it with some of her friends! Some sense of humor, she has,
the lady, and her entourage...). If the government really means it, she
says, it has to tell the settlers that after a certain date they are on
their own, including their physical protection.   


Biletzki: “What we see on the ground are just the trappings of
disengagement, not the real thing. The case is clear. If they really
wanted to evacuate 7000 people, they'd say: ‘Friends, here's your chance.
On August 15 your cell phones, electricity and water will be disconnected,
the army will leave, and you'll need to fend for yourselves.’ That's what
they did in Algeria, remember, where the number was much larger,

The horror probable scenario in which thousands of Jewish settlers will be
murdered by the terror organizations in such a case, doesn’t seem to
bother Ms. Biletzki, the chairman of B’Tselem, the “apolitical” human
rights organization. Truly a heart of gold. 


Now, here is a very good question that Mr. Dahoah-Halevi presents: If
B’Tselem supports the establishment of one state that will comprise the
territory of Israel, the West bank and Gaza, as some of its high-ranking
members say, then why is B’Tselem demanding the dismantling of all the
settlements in the West Bank (amounting to an ethnic cleansing of Jews),
including property that there’s no question that it is under Jewish
ownership or was purchased legally?  


Second in our perusal of B’Tselem’s “apolitical” gems, is the
premise that killing soldiers is “legitimate”. Of course, killing IS a
human rights issue, but because THIS kind of killing cannot but be
perceived as part and parcel of the highly politically charged conflict
between the Jewish Nation, the lawful owners of the Land of Israel in their
absolutely lawful State, that of Israel, and the unlawful occupiers of it,
the Palestinian Arabs, I state that this point is yet another smoke screen,
to enable the “good souls” to be in peace with it, toward the
envisioned dream of B’Tselem to see an additional Arab state, this of the
Palestinian brand, as if there is a difference between it and all the
others, all twenty two of them.  


Prof. Anat Biletzki sees the Palestinian violence as “a legitimate
revolt against the colonialist occupation” and claims that the killing of
soldiers guarding settlements is “a legitimate action” and is not to be
considered “terror”; B’Tselem refrains from condemning attacks
against soldiers even if they “didn’t participate in fighting”. 


On the other hand, B’Tselem blames Israel frequently of killing
Palestinian civilians that “didn’t participate in fighting”, though
such persons are terror operatives or, simply, terrorists, and even heads
of terror organizations. For B’Tselem, the travel of such terror
operative in a car from place to place, even while being armed, is not to
be considered “participating in fighting” but considered at that time a
“civilian”; in other words, he is a “terrorist on  vacation” not
to be attacked. Such an attack, in B’Tselem’s opinion, is a war crime. 


Moreover, B’Tselem does not see “stone throwing” as an act of
“participating in fighting”. Bear in mind, many times in the past,
“stone throwing” caused death fatalities and injuries, sometimes
serious ones; also, bear in mind that a stone is considered lethal weapon,
for ex. in the US (DB).  


Third in our line of issues with B’Tselem, is the doubtful, dubious and
questionable subject of the veracity of their data and statements.  


Doubtful, as witnessed by the main criticism against it, the lack of
accuracy and its inconsistency (see NGO Monitor above, in NOTES).  


Dubious and questionable, because, after all, it is designed to uncover
the actions of what it defines as an oppressing and occupying force, the
State of Israel, against the population which it claims to watch. Now, as
detailed above, the State of Israel is the very entity which B’Tselem
seeks to dismember and replace, at least partially, with the watched
entity, so the notion that its actions do not reflect its political agenda
is ridiculous, to say the least, and, by definition, it is in a permanent
state of conflict of interests.    


B’Tselem’s data on the Palestinian deaths is deficient by being
partial, inaccurate and biased, as Dahoah-Halevi showed in his research on
the number of deaths of 2007 and his series of articles about what
B’Tselem’s spokeswoman calls “death circumstances”. 


An example. Two years passed from he time that Sarit Mikhaeli,
B’Tselem’s spokeswoman, wrote her article in which she blamed him,
Dahoah-Halevi, of “cynical exploitation” of the Ba’alusha family
tragedy and boasted that “the investigative work of B’Tselem is famous
as accurate, credible, and courageous”. Two years passed, and
B’Tselem’s investigators did not see it fit to include in the list of
the “Palestinian deaths perpetrated by Palestinians” the murdered
children of the Ba’alusha family and their father’s companion. The
murder was a news item at the time, but, apparently, B’Tselem didn’t
hear about it. 


So, the demagoguery of B’Tselem is all the more striking. How can it
claim that its work is accurate and credible? How could they blame
Dahoah-Halevi of cynicism and exploitation of a human tragedy? 


No answer to that. But why am I not surprised? I’ll tell you why.  


When I read and hear all the lies that are thrown and heaped on the Jewish
people and their country, the State of Israel, by the Fascist Left with its
Israeli Fifth Column – comprised by many academicians beside other
“good souls” among us, and the inhuman Communist Biletzki among them
– in the lead, I am not surprised. 


My compliments to the accurate, courageous journalist Dahoah-Halevi. Go,
Jonathan, go!  
 By Dan Barkye, a poet and writer
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