|In their own words||"An Israeli-Palestinian grassroots movement...[in a] struggle against the gross injustice and folly that has forced a number of Sheikh Jarrah’s Palestinian residents out of their homes and many others to live under the shadow of imminent eviction.”|
- Democracy Defense Fund LTD was the legal entity for channeling funds to Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement (SJSM). According to a Sheikh Jarrah brochure, donations could also be made via the New Israel Fund (NIF).
- Democracy Defense Fund’s 2013 financial report stated that “In 2013, the organization ceased operations.”
- In 2013, Democracy Defense Fund received donations from New Israel Fund (United States), Rosa Luxemburg Foundation (Germany), and the Ford Foundation (United States).
- Until February 24, 2011, the Sheikh Jarrah Solidarity Movement website included directions for tax deductible donations in the US via IsraelGives.org. “Democracy Defense Fund” continues to be listed with Israel Gives, however it states that it is not accepting donations.
- Sheikh Jarrah’s website has been taken down, but as of February 2017, the organization has a Facebook page, under the name “Sheikh Jarrah- Fighting for Jerusalem,” that is active from time-to-time. It is unclear what/if any activities the organization undertakes.
- According to the organization, “The struggle in Sheikh Jarrah is a political one in which an Israeli settlement organizations, with the support of the Israeli authorities, are trying to expel the Palestinian residents and replace them with Jewish settlers. However, the framework that is being used most frequently to further this goal is the Israeli legal system. As such, it is important to explain what is going on in this context, especially since the evictions have been approved by the various courts in Israel, including the Israeli Supreme Court, thus giving the Jewish settlement an appearance of legality.”
- The organization claimed to have no offices or paid members. Donations are used to “help pay for buses that bring demonstrators from all over Israel, flyers and posters, and, above all, the rising costs of legal counsel and representation.”
- A Jerusalem Post article (E. J’lem activist organization to arrange weekly protests, February 24, 2011) revealed that the group had been taking steps to widen its activities under the name “Solidarity.” A new manifesto called for anti-Israel sanctions, including the “liquidation or fundamental change of organizations that contribute to the dispossession of Arabs, including the Jewish Agency, the Jewish National Fund, and the Israel Lands Authority.”
- In March 2012, Sheikh Jarrah posted on its Facebook page a poster depicting a women being raped as a metaphor for Israel allegedly being “raped” by “settlers.” Following criticism, Sheikh Jarrah offered an apology claiming “The poster using the Vaseline jar was posted on our Facebook page, where it remained for about 30 minutes and then removed after several people found it vulgar or offensive,” as well as stating that a similar poster depicting the rape of a woman “was never used or posted by SJS, since the movement’s leadership deemed it too harsh.”
- At the 2011 J Street conference, Sara Benninga was honored on behalf of the group.
- Benninga accuses Israel of “fascism,” “ethnic discrimination against its residents,” “dispossess[ion] of individuals from one ethnic affiliation and privileges those of another,” “blatant injustice and discrimination,” and “national and racial prejudices.”
Closely linked to J Street. According to documents published in the Washington Times (reported leaked), the group’s activists were involved in an attempt to raise funds for demonstrations through J Street U.