Analysis of New Israel Fund grants in 2020
NGO Monitor analyzed New Israel Fund (NIF) 2020 financial reports (latest available), detailing grants to 270 Israeli non-governmental organizations (NGOs). We focus specifically on the approximately 10% of NIF’s funding that is distributed to 32 political advocacy NGOs claiming to promote human rights in the context of the Arab-Israeli conflict. Many of the NGOs in the NIF network receive large grants from European governments, in some cases providing 90 percent or more of their total budgets.
NIF’s financial reports show:
- 2020 revenue — $50.9 million, 52% increase from 2019 ($33.4 million).
- 2020 total contributions — $40.7 million, 48% increase from 2019 ($27.6 million). NIF’s donor advised contributions also increased 95% to $8.4 million from $4.3 million (2019) (See Table 1).
In analyzing NIF’s financial documents, NGO Monitor found that:
- The NIF continues to fund a number of NGOs centrally involved in political advocacy activities related to the Arab-Israeli conflict, as documented by NGO Monitor. Of note are coordinated and concerted efforts by B’Tselem, Adalah, Breaking the Silence, Gisha, Combatants for Peace, Kerem Navot, Physicians for Human Rights-Israel, and Yesh Din to demonize Israel with the “apartheid” label.
- In 2020, the NIF authorized $3.7 million in grants to 32 political NGOs — a 6% increase (see Table 2), and 22% of total grants.
- NIF increased its grants to Adalah, Haqel, Kerem Navot, Physicians for Human Rights –Israel, and Standing Together, and decreased funds for B’Tselem and Akevot. It is unclear if these changes reflect a policy change or are due to multi-year grants in which the amounts fluctuate through the cycle.
- Adalah portrays Israel as inherently racist and discriminatory, and regularly lobbies media platforms and international bodies to adopt its agenda. Adalah also partners with other anti-Israel pro-BDS groups, and supports the “transformation [of Israel] in to a transnational regime in all historical Palestine” (translation by NGO Monitor), i.e. a one-state formula.
- Kerem Navot, an NGO focusing its advocacy on land policy in the West Bank, joined Human Rights Watch in an international media and political campaign that accused Israel of “appear[ing] more determined than ever to continue upholding and perpetuating an apartheid regime throughout the area under its control.”
- Under the guise of medical expertise and aid, Physicians for Human Rights – Israel promotes distorted and false narratives, used to demonize and delegitimize Israel in the international arena.
- Standing Together, founded in 2015, has been involved in a number of protests in Israel and the West Bank. This NGO also organizes “alternative Memorial Day” ceremonies, alongside Combatants for Peace, another NGO in the NIF network. In April 2018, one of the group’s founders, Ye’ela Ra’anan, advocated for “eliminating the fascist regime in Israel.”
- Funding decreased to B’Tselem by 43% and Akevot by 48%,
- NIF did not provide funding to Social TV or Terrestrial Jerusalem.
- NIF resumed funding to Baladna Arab Youth Association after not funding the NGO since 2014.
- In October 2021, Baladna hosted an event in support of Arabs arrested during the May 2021 riots. As part of the event, a mural was painted featuring the terrorists who murdered Israeli police officers on the Temple Mount in 2017.
- Mossawa only received funding through the Progressive Jewish Fund (see below).
Progressive Jewish Fund
- The Progressive Jewish Fund was launched by the NIF in October 2019, as a donor-advised “national progressive Jewish platform from which to make both US and Israel-based grants… to give to organizations – Jewish or non-Jewish – whose values are consistent with NIF’s principles and policies.” In part, this appears to be an attempt by NIF to attract Jewish donors to specific recipients and seeking an alternative to local federations, some of which had refused to transfer donations to radical anti-Israel groups.
- 181 NGOs (28 of which are also grantees under the existing NIF donor-advised framework) received funds through NIF’s Progressive Jewish Fund in 2020, including:
- IfNotNow is a US-based fringe group that uses highly polarizing tactics in attacking American Jewish institutions, citing supposed “support for occupation.” IfNotNow has organized protests and sit-ins at the headquarters of leading American Jewish communal organizations, infiltrated Birthright trips, as well as “run small, weekend-long orientation trainings on our movement DNA – our collective strategy, story, and structure.”
- Tides Center
- The Tides Center provides fiscal sponsorship for “social change leaders and ventures,” including funding to a number of NGOs that promote anti-Israel narratives, lawfare, and discriminatory BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) campaigns — including the Adalah Justice Project, Arab Resource and Organizing Center (AROC), and Palestine Legal.
- Tides Foundation
- The Tides Foundation serves as a “grantmaking organization primarily through the management of close to 400 donor advised funds.” The Tides Foundation has provided fundingto a number of NGOs that regularly contribute to the international demonization and delegitimization of Israel, including American Friends Service Committee (AFSC), Center for Constitutional Rights (CCR), CODEPINK, Grassroots International, IfNotNow, Jewish Voice for Peace, and National Lawyers Guild.
Table 1: Overview of NIF Finances 2015-2020 (amounts in USD)
Table 2: Multiyear Review of Authorized Core and Donor Advised Grants to Political NGOs (2014 – 2020, USD)
|Breaking the Silence||572,134||629,926||510,942||359,219||438,766||104,304||2,615.291|
|Combatants for Peace||45,348||37,636||25,449||21,180||22,862||20,243||172,718|
|Gisha: Legal Center for the Protection of Freedom of Movement||92,431||97,790||82,516||37,803||6,687||29,150||346,377|
|HaMoked: Center for the Defence of the Individual||60,387||78,189||104,119||83,375||1,300||37,450||346,377|
|Haqel: Jews and Arabs in Defense of Human Rights||4,502||305||60,590||140,972||78,375||-||284,744|
|Human Rights Defenders Fund (HRDF)||171,745||200,550||116,892||175,984||21,7695||199,000||1,081,866|
|Molad: The Center for the Renewal of Democracy||35,833||25,000||47,206||68,857||101,196||417,694||695,786|
|Kerem Navot (Naboth's Vineyard)||15,000||5,000||5,000||12,610||40,902||-||78,512|
|Negev Coexistence Forum||46,813||59,766||82,000||73,406||61,672||49,888||373,545|
|Nine Seven Two: Advancement of Citizen Journalism||274,119||313,219||151,540||127,531||17,332||38,117||921,858|
|Parents' Circle: Bereaved Parents||3,048||2,666||13,456||73,406||4,972||16,902||114,450|
|Physicians for Human Rights - Israel||320,728||274,997||317,174||86,894||102,906||91,679||1,194,378|
|Rabbis for Human Rights||43,861||43,985||37,120||42,775||107,648||296,420||571,809|
|Reut Sadaka Jewish-Arab Youth Movement||3,100||4,050||4,049||11,050||6,844||38,430||67,523|
|SISO - Save Israel. Stop the Occupation.||-||-||-||101,242||120,100||-||221,342|
|The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel||79,639||45,800||35,550||38,450||36,000||41,643||277,082|
|Women's Fund for Human Rights (Machsom Watch)||104,107||117,171||112,234||129,397||87,077||243,535||793,521|
|Zazim - Community Action||211,852||327,793||190,948||314,022||182,013||-||1,226,628|
Table 3: 2019-2020 Progressive Jewish Fund Funding (amounts in USD)
|Alliance for Middle East Peace||2,500||500,000|
|Breaking the Silence||1,800|
|Combatants for Peace||4,000||2.500|
|Nine Seven Two: Advancement of Citizen Journalism||2,500||7,500|
|Parents' Circle: Bereaved Parents||5,000|
|Physicians for Human Rights||5,000|
|The Public Committee Against Torture in Israel||1,800|
|Women's Fund for Human Rights (Machsom Watch)||1,800|