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Combatants for Peace

Profile

Country/TerritoryIsrael
Websitehttp://cfpeace.org/
In their own words“raise the consciousness in both publics regarding the hopes and suffering of the other side, and to create partners in dialogue”; “educate towards reconciliation and non-violent struggle in both the Israeli and Palestinian societies”; “create political pressure on both Governments to stop the cycle of violence, end the occupation and resume a constructive dialog.”

Funding

  • 2014 annual budget NIS 952,699.
  • Based on financial information submitted to the Israeli Registrar of Non-Profits, in accordance with the Israeli NGO transparency law, Combatants for Peace received NIS 483,687 from foreign governmental bodies between the years 2012 to 2015 (see chart below for detailed funding information).
  • According to annual reports, donations from foreign countries comprised 26.1 percent of total donations, from 2012 to 2014.
  • Funders include: Rosa Luzemberg Stiftung (Germany), ZFD-Germany, Switzerland, Belgium, and SIVMO, among others.

Activities

  • According to its website, the “‘Combatants for Peace’ movement was started jointly by Palestinians and Israelis, who have taken an active part in the cycle of violence; Israelis as soldiers in the Israeli army (IDF) and Palestinians as part of the violent struggle for Palestinian freedom. After brandishing weapons for so many years, and having seen one another only through weapon sights, we have decided to put down our guns, and to fight for peace.”

Political Advocacy

  • While claiming to “allow each side to understand the other’s narrative,” Combatants for Peace activities reflect a strong affiliation with the Palestinian agenda and narrative, placing most of the blame for the conflict on “the occupation.”
  • Combatants for Peace was part of the “Remove the Siege – Stop the War” coalition that stood “in defiance of the siege and the destruction and military bombardment…being exercised in Gaza with careless disregard…[and] protest the ongoing massacre” in partnership with highly politicized NGOs, including: New Profile, Alternative Information Center, Israeli Committee Against House Demolitions (ICAHD), Coalition of Women for Peace, and others.
  • Meets “with ministers and political parties, in order to promote it’s (sic) positions into the political scene. On the Palestinian side, members of the movement have met the president Mr. Mahmoud Abbas (Abu Mazen) twice….”
  • Itamar Shapira, a well-known IDF “refusenik” and member of Combatants for Peace, was released from his position as a docent at Yad Vashem Holocaust museum for comparing the Holocaust to the “Nakba” (Palestinian labelling of the founding of Israel as a “catastrophe”) during a guiding a tour.
    • At a Breaking the Silence exhibition in Sweden, Shapira claimed: “We are the oppressors, we are the ones that are violating human rights on a daily basis. We are creating the terror against us, basically.”
  • Organizes “alternative” Remembrance Day ceremonies, featuring the families of fallen Israeli soldiers and victims of terror, as well as the families of Palestinian terrorists. The ceremony equates acts of terror with measures of defense, diminishing the importance of commemorating those who fell defending the state of Israel.
  • Participated in ICAHD “Summer Rebuilding” trips.
    • ICAHD’s utilizes highly demonizing language, accusing Israel of “ethnic cleansing,” “genocide,” “collective punishment,” and “apartheid”; promotes BDS campaigns against Israel; and explicitly advocates for the end of the state of Israel as the nation state of the Jewish people.
  • Organizes political theatre performances in the West Bank, titled “Theatre of the Oppressed,” in which members “take examples of suppression from their own personal experiences.” The performances “take place on the ground: in the village or at the road-block” in an effort to “present[] an opportunity for non-violent resistance.”
  • During a panel of fringe NGO activists as part of a May 2014 conference on “transitional justice” organized by Hebrew University’s Minvera  Center, a representative for Combatants for Peace, Larry Lester, made the following comments1:
    • “We demonstrate against expropriating land for settlements; against activities carried out by the army, the settlers, and the secret service . . . To avoid violence we try and take ahold of our demonstrations and have a circus in front of the army.” He also noted that a feature of these demonstrations is to “bring kids from the villages around.” He claimed that Israel has implemented “road closures” in the West Bank because “settlers don’t like smell of Palestinians going down their roads.”
    • “CFP is essentially an activist organization to draw pressure of course on the Israeli government; only way change will come about is through int’l pressure; if we don’t get press coverage for an event, we regard it as a total failure.”

Partial List of Foreign Donations

Based on reports to the Israeli Registrar of Non-Profits. Figures for the years 2012-2014 are based on annual reports; figures for 2015 are based on quarterly reports

Donor20162015201420132012
Switzerland56,45228,993161,172
Rosa Luxemberg Stiftung (Germany)38,00053,52860,83960,000
ZFD (Germany)4,000

Footnotes

  1. Notes from conference taken by NGO Monitor researcher. On file with NGO Monitor.

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