Starving the terrorists of cash -opinion

Published date20 September 2022
Publication titleJerusalem Post, The: Web Edition Articles (Israel)
The reason given was that those particular NGOs had been diverting to the PFLP (Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine) charitable funding provided to them for their own use. The PFLP is designated a terrorist organization by Israel, as well as by the US, the EU, Japan, Canada and Australia. The UN immediately condemned the closures as "totally arbitrary."

In October 2021, Israel accused six Palestinian civil society groups of funneling donor aid to militants, in particular the PFLP, and consequently designated them terrorist organizations. Justification for this can be traced back to a document published by the Israeli government in February 2019 titled: "Terrorists in Suits."

It presented dozens of examples of ties between NGO activists who delegitimize Israel, and the PFLP and Hamas. The ideological connection between them is that all reject the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish and democratic state, and oppose any normalization between Israel and its neighbors.

The report, which lists in detail the ties between the various bodies, also found that many of these NGOs were led or staffed by members and operatives of known terrorist organizations.

In designating the six NGOs as terrorist-linked, the Defense Ministry said that the groups had "received large sums of money from European countries and international organizations, using a variety of forgery and deceit," and that the money had been passed to the PFLP to support its activities.

"Those organizations present themselves as acting for humanitarian purposes," it said. "However, they serve as a cover for the 'Popular Front' promotion and financing."

"Terrorists in Suits" is not the only exposé of this connection between non-governmental and terrorist organizations. In November 2021, the Institute for National Security Studies, a research body associated with Tel Aviv University, published an 11,000-word academic research paper.

It analyzed the extent to which the EU, as well as individual European nations, consistently pour millions into the coffers of certain Palestinian NGOs nominally concerned with economic development, peace and human rights.

The recipients, however, are "substantial political and economic actors, and are among the leaders of intense soft power conflict, voicing repeated allegations of fundamental Israeli wrong-doing and encouraging anti-Israel campaigns through boycotts and lawfare."

"The EU and West European governments provide funding and access (particularly to media...

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