Revealed: HRW Researcher’s Bizarre Background

Human Rights Watch’s Marc Garlasco has appeared regularly in the media,  touted as a military “expert”. Garlasco played a prominent role in promoting the 2006 Gaza Beach Libel, which wrongly blamed Israel for a “massacre” of Palestinians. (See HonestReporting’s interactive Big Lies presentation for more on this story.)

But what does Garlasco get up to when he isn’t producing one-sided reports attacking Israel? The Mere Rhetoric blog reveals:

There are two Marc Garlascos on the Internet. One is a top human rights investigator who, having joined Human Rights Watch after several years with the Pentagon, has become known for his shrill attacks on Israel. The other is a Marc Garlasco who’s obsessed with the color and pageantry of Nazism, has published a detailed 430 page book on Nazi war paraphernalia, and participates in forums for Nazi souvenir collectors.

Both Marc Garlascos were born on September 4, 1970. Both have Ernst as their middle name. Both live in New York, NY. Both have a maternal grandfather who fought for the Nazis. I’ve put links and screenshots on all this after the jump, and you can click through for full-sized versions. It’s hard to escape the conclusion that both Marc Garlascos are the same person.

Read the full story here.

We and many other blogs that have picked up this story are certainly not suggesting that Marc Garlasco is a neo-Nazi or engaging in anything illegal. However, some, including Elder of Zion, have received a response from HRW accusing them of doing just that.

Irrespective of this, as the Elder says: “It is extraordinarily bad taste and truly offensive that the same person who habitually castigates the Jewish state to a worldwide audience has a creepy obsession with the symbols of those who tried to destroy all Jews.”

Garlasco joins other colleagues at HRW with unsavory backgrounds such as:

  • Joe Stork, who has a long history of support for Israel’s destruction and Palestinian terrorism.
  • Sarah Leah Whitson, who tried to fundraise from wealthy Saudis by highlighting battles with “pro-Israel pressure groups in the US, the European Union and the United Nations”.
  • Lucy Mair, who previously wrote for the anti-Israel “Electronic Intifada” propaganda site before working for HRW.

=lead>Yet the media still looks unquestioningly to HRW and its staff as virtuous models for addressing univeral human rights.

A new NGO Monitor report Experts or Ideologues: Systematic Analysis of Human Rights Watch examines HRW’s activities related to the Arab-Israeli conflict, and particularly on Israel — including  analysis of key HRW staff members.