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Robin Margo (“Hello Robin, Hello Ron”) claims that the Coalition of Women for Peace (CWP) – a leader in the global boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel – “had not received any NIF grant for two or three years and had also been removed by NIF from its list of approved donor-advised organizations”.
NIF is correct to stop funding CWP. However, this action came years too late – NIF issued a statement only on May 15, 2011 declaring that “CWP is no longer on the list of approved donor-advised organizations.” But CWP was known as the leader of the BDS movement years ago, and NIF’s funding provided a “stamp of approval” that legitimized the group and allowed it to raise funds from foreign governments.
Furthermore, as of May 16, 2011, CWP’s “Who Profits?” BDS website continues to recommend that tax deductible donations to the group be made via the NIF, with the following in the memo line: “For the Coalition of Women for Peace – Who Profits Project” (http://www.whoprofits.org/Donations.php). When will NIF take legal action so that CWP stops this false advertising?
In addition to breaking ties with CWP, NIF also should reconsider funding for NGOs that comprise CWP – they participate in and add legitimacy to the group’s BDS activities. One such NGO, Machsom Watch, received $204,698 in NIF grants from 2006-2009 (2006, 2007, 2008, 2009).
After a series of coarsely uncivil and slanderous attacks, in December, NIF announced the adoption of funding guidelines that reflect NGO Monitor’s recommendations, but the implementation has been reluctant and slow. It is our hope that Mr. Margo will use his influence to ensure that much needed reforms are adopted by the NIF, including transparency, and put an end to all funding for groups that participate in BDS and other delegitimization activities. These changes can be made without further outbursts of uncivil language and unfounded accusations on the part of NIF.