Features Australia

German attacks on Israel

6 May 2017

9:00 AM

6 May 2017

9:00 AM

It might be thought that Germany would still feel a bit… er… sensitive in its dealing with Jews. Indeed, the German government has paid Israel considerable reparations for the Holocaust. The German government might be expected to give any activities which could be labelled anti-Semitic a very wide berth indeed. However, Israeli officials are blaming Germany for leading an effort to push a Unesco resolution that rejects Israeli sovereignty over Jerusalem.

Germany has apparently garnered support among European countries for a resolution by Algeria, Morocco, Egypt, Lebanon, Oman, Qatar and Sudan. With the EU countries expected to vote in favour, the resolution is likely to pass.

The anti-Israel activities of many Non-Government Organisations (NGOs) have also become a major factor in German politics. A principal cause of this appears to be an uncritical acceptance of Arab anti-Israel propaganda, propelled by Islamic money (and votes?) which could easily lead to violence against Jews in Germany. Research by the NGO Monitor has shown that the German Government is providing millions of Euros to anti-Israel NGOs in the West Bank and Gaza, and Israel itself.

The money is channelled through a variety of organisations, including German federal government funding programmes of the Ministry for Economic Co-Operation and Development, the German Foreign Office, government aid to left-wing churches, and independent NGOs in a noisome hybrid of extreme left, Islamist and extreme right organisations. This NGO-associated anti-Semitism (let’s not kid ourselves that it is anything but anti-Semitism) is relatively new. It is safe to say that the mainstream German politics of the days of Adenaur or Erhardt would not have had a bar of it. This coincides with the huge influx of Moslem immigrants to Germany and Europe.

German federal funding is allocated to, among others, organisations that promote anti-Israel BDS (boycott, divestment, and sanctions) campaigns aimed at destroying Israel’s economy and legitimacy, and ‘lawfare’ campaigns (using law to silence critics), anti-Zionism, a ‘one-state’ (ie. Jew-free) vision and outright violence.

Professor Gerald Steinberg, President of NGO Monitor, has said: ‘German funding to organisations like B’Tselem and Breaking the Silence is a small part of the problem; the government also provides money to radical organisations that delegitimise the right of the Jewish people to sovereign equality… Since the late 1990s influential human rights NGOs such as Human Rights Watch (HRW) and Amnesty International have been at the forefront of attempts to delegitimise Israel. These international NGOs often work in concert with the Arab League and the Islamic bloc in UN frameworks, as well as with Israeli and Palestinian NGOs, promoting false allegations of ‘war crimes’, ‘massacres’ and other violations of human rights… These NGO condemnations fuel BDS campaigns, as well as lawfare campaigns in the International Criminal Court and other venues.’

He also wrote: ‘Non-governmental organisations are very big business in Israel. Various NGOs — most of them from the Left and claiming to promote human rights and democracy — are very active in the Knesset, in filing lawsuits with the Supreme Court that seek to overturn government policies, and in the media.

‘They receive hundreds of millions of shekels from large foundations and foreign governments — primarily European. While the activities of these NGOs are criticised by the Israeli Right, much of the mainstream Israeli media supports them. As a result, the “halo effect” that protects these NGOs from independent investigation is particularly strong.

‘But that halo was shattered recently when the popular Israeli television news program Uvda featured a hidden-camera exposé of a little-known “peace group” known as Ta’ayush, led by activist Ezra Nawi. The footage showed Nawi, along with Nasser Nawaja, a Palestinian employee of the NGO B’Tselem, plotting against an Arab who was negotiating to sell private land in the West Bank to Jews. They were trying to lure the Palestinian into a trap where he would be captured by the Palestinian Authority’s security services. As Nawi coldly noted in the video, under PA law, the sale of Palestinian land to Israelis is punishable by death.

‘The broadcast became headline news and the fallout continued for weeks. Nawi was arrested at Ben-Gurion Airport when he tried to flee the country.

‘A few days later, a follow-up program aired more hidden-camera footage, this time showing Nawi with officials from two other prominent “human rights” NGOs — Breaking the Silence and Rabbis for Human Rights. Both groups were shown giving money to Nawi, who then handed out checks to Palestinians, apparently for taking part in violence.’

The German government funds, directly and indirectly, a number of organisations with alleged ties to the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a designated terrorist organisation by the EU, US, Canada, and Israel. The Palestinian NGO Al-Haq has been receiving German Government funding since 2013, and indirectly through the German-funded NGO Medico International (MI). Al-Haq’s General Director, Shawan Jabarin, is alleged to have ties to the PFLP and has been denied exit visas by Israel and Jordan, NGO Monitor revealed.

A German-funded project on ‘strengthening non-violent initiatives’ also involved the Palestinian NGO Popular Struggle Coordination Committees. Despite the name, PSCC board member Manal Tamimi has promoted terrorism, violence, and virulent anti-Semitic rhetoric and imagery, as well as using Nazi and Holocaust rhetoric on her Twitter account. NGO Monitor has informed the German Government of this, without response. Matan Peleg, CEO of the Zionist organisation Im Tirtzu told German Foreign Minister Sigmar Gabriel: ‘I wish to tell you on behalf of Im Tirtzu, the largest Zionist movement in Israel, that we view your statement as inherently flawed, hypocritical and insulting.’

‘The only organisations in Israel that the German government funds are political propaganda organisations that promote defamatory criticism against Israel including false accusations of war crimes, ethnic cleansing and additional crimes against humanity.’

‘This is subversion, and nothing less. It is a breach of fundamental agreements between two friendly democratic countries that have no business interfering in the internal affairs of one another.’ So far, the German government has not replied.

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