KAIROS and Political Advocacy: The Facts
In November 2009, the Canadian International Development Agency (CIDA) denied KAIROS’ application for a $7 million/four-year grant. This resulted in scrutiny of the organization’s advocacy, including its politicized involvement in the Arab-Israeli conflict.
In response, media statements from KAIROS and its supporters have claimed that there is no evidence that the organization was active in anti-Israel campaigns, such as BDS (boycotts, divestment, and sanctions). This information is inconsistent with information published by KAIROS:
- On January 7, 2008, KAIROS published a “strategy paper” entitled “Economic Advocacy Measures: Options for KAIROS Members for the Promotion of Peace in Palestine and Israel.” This document endorses divestment from Israel, explicitly promoting the campaign in the U.S. Presbyterian Church and led by the radical Palestinian NGO known as Sabeel. The text also describes KAIROS’ plans to coordinate these activities among its member churches.
- KAIROS’ “Resources for education and action” webpage (accessed Dec. 30, 2009) includes material from “KAIROS partner” Sabeel: (a) a call for anti-Israel divestment, and (b) a statement describing Zionism as an “ideology of empire, colonialism, and militarism.”
- Although the KAIROS’ press release (Dec. 18, 2009) asserts that “KAIROS took a public position opposing sanctions and a boycott of Israel,” there is no reference to divestment. Indeed, as seen above, KAIROS is very active in this element of political advocacy.
- Sometime after Dec. 8, 2009 (when NGO Monitor reviewed the website) KAIROS added a disclaimer to its resources page (accessed Dec. 22, 2009): “Note that some of these resources are not written by KAIROS and do not necessarily reflect KAIROS policy.” (Version without disclaimer can be seen on the Oct. 15 cache of this page.)