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March 12, 2015 7:48 am

Why is the Jewish Communal Fund Allowing Grants to NIF?

avatar by Ronn Torossian

The Temple Mount. Photo: Wikimedia Commons.

The Jewish Communal Fund (JCF) is the largest Jewish donor-advised fund in the United States, managing $1.3 billion in charitable assets for 3,100 funds. They work solely with the super rich, providing support to a myriad of Jewish organizations – secular and religious, healthcare, educational, and medical related, and more. Like every other non-profit organization, the JCF follows rules and procedures.

As such, a review of the organizations’ policies handbook reveals the organization is “committed to supporting causes that promote the welfare and security of the Jewish community here and abroad. Consequently, as part of the grant review process, the Board of Trustees of the Jewish Communal Fund retains the right to deny any grant request where the purposes and activities of the recommended charitable organization are deemed to be adverse to the interests of the Jewish community.”

A review of the organization’s tax-return filings reveals that JCF funneled many millions of dollars to the New Israel Fund (NIF) in the last few years. The NIF funds organizations like the Human Rights Defenders Fund (HRDF), whose Executive Director has called Israel “racist,” and “murderous,” and described the country as a “temporary Jewish apartheid state.” That is not in line with the JCF’s self-described policies.

The NIF supports numerous organizations that fund the anti-Israel Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) campaign, and in July 2014, 10 NIF grantees launched a campaign to convince the UN Human Rights Council that Israel must be brought to justice for war crimes and targeting of civilians. There is more.

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Professor Gerald Steinberg, an Israeli academic, said recently that “While the leaders of the New Israel Fund… claim to support Israel and human rights principles, they enable the highly destructive activities that do the opposite. By the time these funders acknowledge this failure and end their support, the damage will be done.”

A few months ago, Birthright Israel cut all ties with The New Israel Fund.

Knesset Deputy Speaker Yoni Chetboun noted that the NIF was bent on “erasing the Jewish identity from the Jewish State.” In February 2015, both the ruling Likud Party, as well as the Jewish Home party, described the NIF as “anti-Zionist.”

The Jewish Communal Fund must follow their own policies and deny grant requests from the New Israel Fund.

As political strategist Hank Sheinkopf wrote recently, “Those who stand with New Israel Fund are standing against Israel. To suggest otherwise is a lie. I urge anyone affiliated with the NIF to stop supporting this organization financially. The New Israel Fund must be ostracized by the Jewish community.”

Refuting the New Israel Fund must cross all religious and political differences. As we stand against Neturei Karta, we must stand against NIF

The Jewish Communal Fund is mandated to follow their policy handbook.

Stand up and be counted.

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