by Lori Lowenthal Marcus Arutz Sheva February 25, 2007
Jewish funds are supporting anti-Zionist groups.
If your favorite child advocacy organization used a portion of your donations to fund Internet child pornography sites, you would be furious. Many mainstream Jewish donors may find themselves in a similar situation. Some of the money they think is being used to help preserve Israel as the Jewish homeland is actually being used to end Israelâ€™s existence as a Jewish state.
Most American and other Jews use Jewish Federations as a kind of mutual fund advisor, which makes decisions about and invests their donorsâ€™ funds in programs they have vetted and determined to be in accordance with the donorsâ€™ wishes. In turn, most Jewish Federations channel funds designated for Israel programs through the Jewish Agency for Israel. (A very few, such as the Fede
Some of the Federation money is actually being used to end Israelâ€™s existence as a Jewish state.
ration in Philadelphia, independently decide which programs in Israel to fund.) JAFI acts as a second-tier investment advisor for Israel programs.
Three of the principal goals of JAFI are to: develop Jewish communities in the Galilee and the Negev, encourage Aliyah (i.e., the movement of Jews to Israel), and promote Jewish continuity, with Israel as the linchpin. All three of those goals, however, are considered illegitimate colonizing enterprises by at least one of JAFIâ€™s grantees – the Mossawa Center, an Arab Israeli think tank. Mossawa is committed to thwarting every one of them.
A recent article revealed that the Mossawa Center, which is funded indirectly by the Jewish Agency for Israel, disseminated a report declaring that Israel cannot be both a democracy and a Jewish state. According to that document, which represents the view of the Arab-Israeli elites and of the Arab local authorities as stated in separate, but nearly identical, manifestos, the Jewish state of Israel is inherently illegitimate. It must be recast as a bi-national state. In addition to purging any identification with the Jewish people, Israel must also make reparation to, and elevate everything about, the Arab Palestinians and their culture, history, language and nationalist desires.
Not sated by demanding such changes as de-Judaizing the Israeli flag and Israelâ€™s anthem, the document also calls for abolishing the Jewish Law of Return. At the same time, Israel must acknowledge and grant Israeli Arabs (and all their descendants) the right to return to the places from which they fled when the Arab states attacked Israel upon its declaration of 20th-century statehood.
And who provides financial support to the institution from which the report issued? In addition to the usual suspects, there are some surprises.
The New Israel Fund is a non-profit organization that focuses on eliminating any special role for religion in either Israeli society or government. NIF grants reflect that orientation. One of the largest grants the NIF gave in the latest year for which information is available was to an organization it co-founded: the Mossawa Center.
An NIF document states that organizationâ€™s belief that efforts should be expended to prevent efforts to â€Judaize the Galilee and Negev.â€ In other words, there is no part of Israel the NIF thinks should be, or remain, officially “Judaized.” More than 33 percent of NIF grants go to programs that exclusively serve Arab Israelis, and fully 40 percent of the money of Shatil, NIFâ€™s â€œempowerment center,â€ is used for assistance to Israelâ€™s Arab minority. Those programs actively promote the erasure of any special status for Jews in Israel.
But what about donors to Jewish Federations? It is unlikely that many consider the creation of Israel to have been a plot by the Jewish-Zionist elite to further a colonialist policy of â€œJudaizationâ€ of Arab land through the â€œexpulsionâ€ of the Palestinian people, as it is described in the Arab Israelisâ€™ documents. Nor would many of those donors agree that the creation of the Jewish state was a tragedy (Nakba) that should be rectified through, minimally, the paymen
The principal goals of JAFI are considered illegitimate colonist enterprises by at least one of JAFIâ€™s grantees.
t of compensation to Palestinian Arabs and the recognition that the Palestinians are â€œthe indigenous peopleâ€ of Israel, or that Arabic should be elevated to the status of the state’s â€œmother tongue.â€
Jewish Federations, the Jewish Agency for Israel and the Jewish Joint Distribution Committee base their existence on Jewish support for Jews and, with respect to Israel, a Jewish state and the Jews who live there. Why would those organizations help undermine the birthright of Jews anywhere to become Israeli citizens, or to negate Israel as the homeland of the Jewish people?
Yet, a perusal of a recent NIF Annual Report reveals large donations from both the Jewish Agency for Israel and â€œthe Joint.â€ In fact, the Jewish Agency is in the NIF’s highest donor category, the one for those giving more than $100,000. â€œThe Jointâ€ shows up in the donor category of $25,000 to $50,000, as do the Jewish Federation of Grand Rapids, Michigan, and the Jewish Womenâ€™s Foundation of Metropolitan Chicago. There are several other Jewish Federations in the $10,000 to $24,999 category, including those from Durham-Chapel Hill, Greater Los Angeles, Greater Atlanta, Greater Houston and that of New Hampshire. The Jewish Womenâ€™s Foundation of the Greater Palm Beaches appears in this donor category, as well.
In other words, rather than steadfastly working to support the Jewish nature of Israel, the Jewish Agency and other mainstream Jewish organizations, unwittingly or otherwise, are helping to fund its demise.
In the mutual fund business, when advisors do not follow an investment policy that accords with their clientsâ€™ intentions, they can be sued for breach of trust. It is time for Jewish donors who wish Israel to remain a Jewish state – and there is nothing inconsistent with it being a Jewish state and a democracy – to scrutinize the actions of their investment professionals.
7 Adar 5767 / 25 February 07