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"Therefore, it was striking that some of the most prominent Israeli NGOs boycotted the December 1st Knesset conference on "Foreign Government Funding for NGO Political Activity in Israel." The agenda included the political, diplomatic and legal issues raised by the phenomenon of NGOs which receive tens of millions of shekels from foreign governments, often without the knowledge of the Israeli government and public. Legislative proposals were also considered." "These NGOs have a vested interest in making their voices heard, and they were given an open platform. But they refused to attend. Instead, NGOs and their allies initiated a campaign to delegitimize the conference and silence its organizers. They pressed MKs like Daniel Ben-Simon to cancel participation in the event, and wrote angry op-eds in The Jerusalem Post (David Newman) and Ha’aretz (Didi Remez). Reflecting the pervasive secrecy and lack of full disclosure, Remez did not reveal that he works for Ben-Or Communications. In this role, he has a direct and personal interest in many of the organizations he was defending: the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), Bimkom, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel (PHR-I), and Yesh Din. These over-the-top reactions and silencing of critics reflect the "democracy deficit" and secretive nature of human rights NGOs in general. This trend is more pronounced among Israeli groups that rely heavily on foreign government funding."