Co-winner of prestigious literary prize donates winnings to anti-IDF NGO

A co-winner of this year’s Man Booker International Prize will donate a portion of her winnings to the European Union-backed B’Tselem, which works against the interests of the Jewish state. 

The translator of Israeli author David Grossman’s novel, A Horse Walks into a Bar, a fictional work that awarded her and Grossman the prestigious Man Booker International Prize on Wednesday, said she will donate a portion of the £50,000 ($64,000) in winnings to the NGO B’Tselem.

“I will be donating half of the award money to an organization called B’Tselem,” Jessica Cohen said during her acceptance speech at the Victoria & Albert Museum in London, which earned applause from the crowd.

“For almost 30 years, they have been reporting on human rights violations committed by Israel in the ‘occupied territories,’” she added, referring to Judea and Samaria.

B’Tselem, largely financed and funded by the European Union, uses Palestinian photographers to document alleged human rights violations in Judea and Samaria on the part of the IDF. Grossman has also praised B’Tselem, referring to the organization as “bold” in a letter he wrote in 2012.

Cohen, who was born in England but grew up in Israel, said she maintains hope for peace because of organizations like B’Tselem rather than the elected Israeli government.

“I’m not going to waste my breath hoping for change to come from the current Israeli administration, but I do hope that Israeli and Palestinian people can rekindle whatever shred of humanism and empathy they still have,” she said.

“It’s not easy to tell unflattering and uncomfortable truths, and it’s certainly not easy to hear them, but it is essential, not only in literature but in life, and I hope that organizations like B’Tselem can continue to do so.”

NGO Monitor, which demands transparency from NGOs and government funders, notes that b’Tselem’s claims are marked by major omissions and distortions.

B’Tselem ‘Cause[s] Friction that Did Not Exist’

“There is a fundamental difference between filming an incident while it is taking place and creating an incident by going to a specific place with a camera,” Maj. Gen. Moti Almoz noted recently on Facebook, addressing the NGO as “slanderers.”

“Most of the time you choose the latter option and cause friction that did not exist beforehand…

“You keep on producing videos in the name of freedom of expression, even though the expression is out of touch with reality, and we will continue to protect the citizens of Israel,” he stated.

B’tselem’s participation in an anti-Israel effort at the UN last fall was the last straw for Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, who was determined to put an end to national service opportunities with the anti-IDF organization, which continuously works against the interests of the Jewish state, siding with the enemy.

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By: World Israel News Staff