Registered as a non-profit organization with the Palestinian Authority, the Bethlehem-based BADIL Resource Center for Palestinian Residency & Refugee Rights was established in 1998 to “provide a resource pool of alternative, critical and progressive information and analysis on the question of Palestinian refugees and displaced persons.” “BADIL” – pronounced bad-eel’ – is an Arabic word that means “alternative.”
Aligned ideologically with Al-Awda (a.k.a. the Palestine Right of Return Coalition), BADIL refuses to recognize Israel as a legitimate state and actively promotes the “right of return” for millions of Palestinian refugees whose influx into Israel would render Jews a permanent minority therein. “The majority of Palestinians became refugees during armed conflict and war in Palestine,” says BADIL. “Sources of flight [also] include indiscriminate [Israeli] attacks on civilians, massacres, looting, destruction of property (including entire villages), and forced expulsion.”
Employing the term Nakba – Arabic for “Catastrophe” – when referring to the creation of Israel as a sovereign nation in 1948, BADIL views the Jewish state as an oppressive entity that has subjected its Arab inhabitants and neighbors to all manner of abuse and suffering in the decades since its founding. As documented by NGO Monitor, BADIL routinely accuses Israel of “apartheid,” “ethnic cleansing,” “genocide,” “war crimes,” “colonization,” and “racism.”
To address these alleged transgressions, BADIL strongly supports the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement which seeks to delegitimize and financially cripple the state of Israel. The organization also has sought repeatedly to prosecute Israeli military officials in international and European courts. In 2009, BADIL published a report titled “Litigating Palestine,” which focused on the need to “hol[d] Israel accountable in the courtroom.”
In 2010, BADIL legal counselor Yasmine Gado authored a pro-BDS paper titled “Principles and Mechanisms to Hold Business Accountable for [Israeli] Human Rights Abuses,” which claimed that the Palestinians were “displaced, dispossessed and oppressed” because the United Nations had failed to hold “Israel accountable for its massive violation of international law and the Nakba over 60 years ago.”
In December 2010, BADIL participated in the 10th Annual Meeting of the Global Palestine Right of Return Coalition, which produced a final statement calling for “the rejection of any settlement to the Palestinian/Arab – Zionist conflict,” so as “to emphasize that the terms of … the Roadmap Plan and the Arab Peace Initiative do not meet the minimum rights of our people but only perpetuate the arrogance of the Zionists.”
In 2012, BADIL co-published a manifesto advocating “the return of displaced Palestinians to the lands from which they have been displaced and denied return for over six decades,” and encouraging the establishment of a “de-Zionized Palestine” – i.e., a single-state with an Arab majority and a Jewish minority.
In July 2014, BADIL was a signatory to a “Joint Call to Action” advocating a “legal intifada” designed to “expand and deepen the global BDS movement” against “Israeli apartheid, colonialism and occupation.”
In March 2015, BADIL and another Israeli NGO, Zochrot, held a speaking tour in four major U.S. cities to discuss “the ongoing injustices of the Nakba.”
Twelve months later, BADIL participated in “The Third International Conference on the Return of Palestinian Refugees.” Funded by the American Friends Service Committee, this conference was founded on the premise that “since the beginning of the Nakba in 1948, hundreds of thousands of Palestinians have lost home and homeland due to the ongoing violence of the State of Israel and Zionist militias against civilian populations.”
In April 2016, BADIL and a few other NGOs co-published a report accusing Israel of “expropriating land and property” in “blatant violation of International Humanitarian Law.” The following month, BADIL participated in a speaking tour of Ireland, which the organization described as a vehicle by which to emphasize the “legitimacy and legality” of BDS “as one of the effective methods of resistance” to Israeli wrongdoing.
In October 2016, BADIL published a working paper.pdf) that accused Israel of implementing “policies of colonization, apartheid, and forced displacement” against the Palestinians. That same month, BADIL and Al-Mezan co-hosted a European Parliament panel on “ensuring accountability for [Israeli] violations of international law in the occupied Palestinian Territories and on the UN database of businesses operating in Israeli settlements.”
In a November 2016 publication co-authored by BADIL, the notoriously anti-Semitic Palestinian activist Manal Tamimi – who had recently tweeted that “vampire zionist[s]” typically celebrate Yom Kippur by “drinking Palestinian bloods” [sic] – was lauded as a “prominent human-rights defender.”
At the United Nations’ Forum on Business and Human Rights in November 2016, BADIL helped moderate a discussion emphasizing the importance of developing “a data base of corporations complicit in [Israeli] human-rights violations” against Palestinians.
In December 2016 BADIL released a working paper that accused Israel of subjecting Palestinians to “forced population transfer,” and of using “excessive force” to “criminalize and suppress demonstrations or even the development and practice of Palestinian culture.”
In February 2017, BADIL and Jewish Voice for Peace co-sponsored a webinar titled “Forced Population Transfer and Colonization,” which focused on “issues such as the 50-year anniversary of the occupation, the 70-year anniversary of the Nakba, and the centennial of the Balfour Declaration.”
In March 2017 at the 34th session of the UN Human Rights Council, BADIL co-facilitated a side event condemning “Israel’s collective punishment measures targeting the protected Palestinian population in Occupied East Jerusalem.” That same month, BADIL exhorted the International Criminal Court “to open an investigation into Israel’s commission of the crime of apartheid against the Palestinian people and to bring those responsible into justice.”
In June 2017, BADIL was a signatory to a written statement – addressed to the UN Human Rights Council – accusing Israel of such transgressions as “colonization,” “crimes against humanity,” and “war crimes.”
For additional information on BADIL, click here.