IDF joins assault on Israeli human rights community
As international pressure mounts on Israel the government assault on civil society is reaching new lows. Now it appears that the IDF and GSS [Shin Bet] are working in tandem with Im Tirzu, which over the weekend launched an unprecedented campaign reminiscent of Der Sturmer, against Prof. Naomi Chazan, President of the the New Israel fund. Here’s an excerpt from a report by Ben Caspit on Maariv’s website this morning.
Now it turns out that the materials exposed on the weekend are familiar to the IDF authorities and the legal authorities in Israel. Some of them were given half a year ago to the Military Advocate General Brig. Gen. Avichai Mandelblit.
He checked the material and gave it to the Atty. Gen., with a recommendation to open an official investigation. No such investigation has been made so far. The Israel Security Agency [Shin Bet; GSS] is also familiar with the material and the sensitive issue. Taking action against this is not simple because NIF is a registered association in the US. Also, it is noteworthy that a large part of the fund’s activities in Israel are devoted to social and public issues of the first order.
“It will be hard to connect this activity to political subversion,” said a security source, who is well familiar with the affair. “But on the other hand, there is clearly a worrisome pattern here that is causing Israel serious damage and helping its worst critics tie the IDF’s hands and undermine the legitimacy of the Jewish state in general and its right to defend itself in particular.”
Im Tirtzu is now planning to launch a large public campaign, both against the New Israel Fund in general and personally against its head, Prof. Naomi Hazan. Dozens of movement activists demonstrated last night in front of Hazan’s house dressed up as Hamas activists and carryied signs thanking Hazan and the fund. As far as we know Hazan herself is presently in the U.S.