By Prof Steven Plaut
1. You know things are REALLY going well when Haaretz and the radical Left in Israel are hysterical. And hysterical they are this week. It seems there is a new Knesset initiative to regulate and restrict the funding from foreign sources of the legions of picayune anti-Israel leftist NGOs and “organizations” in Israel. Basically these groups all have the same Israeli members, who migrate from group to Potemkin group to make it look like there are oodles of such organizations. These “organizations” could not exist at all were it not for the funding they get from hostile foreign organizations and governments. It is a bit like pro-Nazi organizations being allowed to operate in the UK and the US in 1942 where they are funded by the Third Reich and by “organizations” operating in Germany.
Organizations representing foreign interests are required to be registered as agents or lobbyists for foreign powers in the US and in some other places. A few years ago Knesset Members from the Non-Left proposed requiring that leftist NGOs in Israel provide disclosure of the sources of their funding. The Left sobbed that this was anti-democratic and Bibi Netanyahu had a sudden attack of cowardice and ordered the Likud not to support the initiative. That bill would not have stopped the trouble-makers’ funding, just expose it.
Now a new bill is being introduced into the Knesset, sponsored by Knesset Member Ayelet Shaked, from the “Jewish Home” party of Brother Naftali. Here is her web pagehttps://www.knesset.gov.il/mk/eng/mk_eng.asp?mk_individual_id_t=904 and her email, should you wish to send her a Yasher Koach, is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Her bill evidently goes further than the earlier Due Disclosure proposal that Bibi shot down and it would restrict governmental funding from abroad for some anti-Israel NGOs operating in Israel. Specifically, it would ”limit foreign governmental funding to Israeli NGOs that oppose Israel’s Jewish character or Israeli democracy, advocate boycotting Israel or trying its soldiers in international courts, or incite to racism or terrorism.” (http://www.timesofisrael.com/facing-ngo-bill-lefts-sweeping-opposition-could-prove-counterproductive/) The Left is whining that the bill seeks to harm “human rights” groups, and the “human rights” groups in question are far-Leftist anti-Israel propaganda groups who care about human rights about as much as the Muslim Brotherhood and the Hamas do so.
As I say, anything that makes the Left hysterical must be something of sublime value, beauty and importance. The best manifestation is the Haaretz editor, and it goes well beyond the usual Stalinist-era screeching inside Haaretz. See it here: http://www.haaretz.com/opinion/ignorant-of-democracy-extreme-right-is-after-ngos-once-again.premium-1.535094> According to the editors of the Palestinian newspaper printed in Hebrew:
“The extreme right (sic) has been obsessively trying to introduce nationalist content into the education system, exclude Israel’s Arab minority and make a mockery of the very idea of democracy by subordinating it to religion in the guise of Zionism. To all this must now be added an idiotic new initiative, which, if successful, would eliminate freedom of expression in Israel and thwart legitimate criticism.”