Friday, March 11, 2005

Secretive manipulation

European groups are trampling on and distorting Israeli democracy through funding left-wing groups.

"And large sums have poured in from the European Union and its member states to so-called non-government organizations in Israel for use in "empowering Palestinians" and "ending the occupation." Jeffrey Halper's one-man NGO, whose agenda consists primarily of attacks against the "apartheid wall," and rhetoric aimed at undermining Israel's legitimacy, has received hundreds of thousand of dollars from the European Union.

“These lapses in civil behavior are not the result of bad judgment on the part of funders, or, in the case of the Friedrich Ebert Stiftung, the gross offensiveness of a German organization seeking to mold Israeli views on war and peace.

“More broadly, such examples demonstrate a consistent and blatant attempt to manipulate a democratic process from the outside. Would France tolerate a mass advertising campaign aimed at civil society by American-government supported radical anti-abortion groups?

“In sharp contrast to the U.S., much of Europe is blind to the differences between Israeli democracy and Arab tyranny. The European Mediterranean Policy framework, also known as the Barcelona Process, uses the same methods and approaches to "civil society" in the Palestinian Authority, Syria, Egypt and North Africa as it tries in democratic Israel.

“However, since most of these funding organizations, including the European Union and its member governments fail to practice the transparency that they preach to others, Israelis do not have access to reliable information.

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