George Soros’ foundations doled out millions to groups behind anti-Israel protests, rhetoric

George Soros' Open Society Foundations have funded anti-Israel groups that blame Israel for violence and helped organize protests against the country in the aftermath of the deadliest attack against Jews since the Holocaust.

Published: October 31, 2023 11:00pm

Before the Israel-Hamas war began, a nonprofit called Adalah—The Legal Center for Arab Minority Rights in Israel routinely released reports and filed petitions in the Israeli Supreme Court accusing the government of serious misconduct.

One report alleged Benjamin Netanyahu's administration was "instituting racial segregation" and engaging in "Judaization" through its housing policy. Another claimed that Israeli police forced had "total impunity" to kill Palestinians. A third unsuccessfully argued that Israel should lift its travel ban on a Palestinian sheikh previously arrested in 2003 over allegations of raising millions for Hamas. He entered a plea agreement which banned foreign travel and requires monthly check-ins. Most recently, he spent 16 months in prison after being convicted of “inciting to terror.”

Over the years, the Palestine-based group had a solid backer across the ocean in America: liberal megadonor George Soros' massive nonprofit in New York.

The Adalah legal center has received at least $1.5 million since 2016 from the Open Society Foundations, the Soros-backed nonprofit which has doled out millions to groups inside and outside the United States that have blamed Israel for violence in the Middle East, accused its citizens of being colonists, and cheered anti-Zionist protests, a Just the News review of grant records shows.

Soros' charitable giving to anti-Israel groups soared to national attention last week when two groups he previously funded—Jewish Voice for Peace and If Not Now—staged an unlawful protest inside the U.S. House of Representatives Cannon office building. JVP received at least $350,000 in OSF funding and has labeled Israel as an apartheid state and an occupier.

The Adalah legal center did not immediately respond to a request for comment from Just the News on Tuesday.

The funding extends beyond these groups, to some that are less well known, but advance anti-Israel and anti-Zionist messages in the United States and abroad.

OSF gave $277,000 in grants to the Palestine Institute for Public Diplomacy (PIPD), earmarked to improve “the Grantee’s work on advocacy capacity online in Europe.” PIPD is an advocacy organization based out of Palestine that provides "educational materials" and advocacy toolkits to its audience in order to better understand and advance “justice and freedom in Palestine.” Some of that material includes disseminating theories that ChatGPT has an "anti-Palestinian bias."

PIPD’s website also links to another organization called Decolonize Palestine, which provides resources on “myths” about Palestine and accuses Israel of “rainbow washing” its record to deflect criticisms. According to that website, rainbow washing involves Israel appealing to things like equality or progressive politics, environmentalism, and women’s rights in order to distract from its “dismal world image.”

This website also perpetuates the narrative that all Israelis are colonists, taking the rightful land of local Arabs. In reality, only about 45% of the Israeli Jewish population is Ashekenazi—or descendants of European Jews. The remaining Jews are from other groups, like the Mizrahim, who are descendants of Jews from throughout the Arab world, including from places like Morocco, Libya, Egypt and Iraq. They also prominently push the narrative that the "two-state" solution is a myth. The website does not disclose its donors.

PIPD also provides “talking points and messaging guidance” for the Palestinian issue which place the blame squarely on Israel for any violence. “The situation we find ourselves in is not some sudden, out-of-the-blue crisis that began just last week. This is not an isolated incident. The root cause of this never-ending turmoil is seven decades of settler colonialism, military violence, expulsion of entire communities, and the continuous dehumanization and humiliation of Palestinians for generations,” the talking points memo reads.

“We cannot equate the violence of the oppressor with the violence of the oppressed. Responsibility for this violence lies squarely on the occupier, the colonizer who wields the power to end it,” it continues.

PIPD did not provide statement in response to inquiries from Just the News.

OSF has also given funds to the Association for the Promotion of Jewish Secularism, which publishes the Jewish Currents magazine. The magazine was founded in 1946 “as a secular magazine affiliated with the Communist Party USA.” Today, it describes itself as “a democratic socialist, secular Jewish publication.” OSF has provided $300,000 in grants to this organization since 2020, according to OSF records.

The magazine includes a slew of articles on the recent tension in Western cities between pro-Palestine protestors and governments as well as Israel’s response to the Hamas terrorist attack. One Jewish Currents author wrote that European governments were increasing “repression” against pro-Palestine protestors while giving a “carte blanche” to Israel to “embark on what experts have called a genocidal assault on the Gaza Strip.”

Indeed, some European governments have cracked down on these protests. For example, the government of the United Kingdom is enforcing anti-terrorism and hate speech laws, targeting individual participants who express views such as “I fully support Hamas” or display images of paragliders, an apparent reference to tactics used by Hamas in its terrorist attack.

One protestor filmed in Glasgow told Jewish people “Don’t forget where the Jews were in 1940,” a reference to the Holocaust at the height of World War Two. London police have said that antisemitic offenses under British law were dramatically higher in the month of October than in the same period last year, from 28 last year to 408 this year, according to The Guardian.

Jewish Currents X account was active in reposting content defending the popular pro-Palestine slogan “From the River to the Sea,” which the was adopted by Hamas leadership in 2012 in calling for an end to the illegitimate “Israeli occupation.” The slogan is often shouted at Anti-Israel protests and is interpreted to mean eradication of the Jewish state.

George Soros and his Open Society Foundations have a long history of contributing to domestic and international causes, including criminal justice reform and elections. Recently, the elder Soros passed control of his billion-dollar philanthropic empire to his son, Alexander Soros who told The Wall Street Journal that he is “more political” than his father. To this end, the younger Soros seeks to influence U.S. domestic politics in a bigger way, announcing his first push as head of the organization is to support voting and abortion rights.

The Open Society Foundations did not respond to a request for comment from Just the News about its funding activities, particularly regarding the anti-Israel groups.

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