An unusual letter from 20 IDF reservists, including officers, was delivered Monday to Rabbi Gordon Tucker and the Leadership of Temple Israel of White Plains, New York, regarding the community’s donations to the New Israel Fund. Similar letters were sent to 100 other NIF donors.
The letter notes that the community donates significantly to the New Israel Fund, and asks that the community demand that the New Israel Fund cease supporting organizations that defame IDF soldiers, in Israel and around the world, and protect terrorists....
The full text of the letter follows:
“In recent years, you have donated significantly to numerous Israeli organizations and associations. The goal that you sought to achieve with your donation was to support Zionism and support organizations working for human rights and against anti-democratic activities. You support organizations that you believe work towards creating a better, saner, more democratic, and more moral Israel.
“The reason why you donate funds is not in doubt, nor has it ever been. However, the funds you donate are not being used to serve the purpose for which you donated them. We also know that you donate to the New Israel Fund and we wholeheartedly believe that you love the New Israel Fund, support its activities, and want to strengthen it. We won’t argue the point.
“However, there is one thing we ask, and, as active-duty and reserve soldiers in the Israel Defense Forces, we feel it is our right to ask.
“Please demand that the New Israel Fund cease and desist from supporting organizations that defame us IDF soldiers, in Israel and around the world. These include organizations such as Breaking the Silence, B’Tselem, Yesh Din, the Public Committee Against Torture in Israel (PCATI), Gisha – Legal Center for Freedom of Movement, and Machsom Watch.
“Please demand that the New Israel Fund cease and desist from supporting organizations which protect terrorists who have attacked and stabbed Israelis, even in the current wave of terror which has been plaguing Israel for over a year. These organizations, which are supported by the New Israel Fund, include: B’Tselem, Breaking the Silence, the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), HaMoked: Center for the Defense of the Individual, Gisha – Legal Center for Freedom of Movement, Bimkom – Planners for Planning Rights, Ta’ayush, Adalah, Physicians for Human Rights – Israel (PHR-IL), and Rabbis for Human Rights.
“Just this week, Israel’s Minister of Defense, Moshe Ya’alon, forbade the entrance of Breaking the Silence to all IDF bases. This is an extraordinary move expressing how deeply Israeli society perceives that is has been hurt by this organization. Israel’s Minister of Education, Naftali Bennett, announced that he forbade the entrance of Breaking the Silence to all Israeli schools.
“Those same organizations are delegitimization organizations. Their purpose is solely to defame the soldiers of the Israeli Defense Forces and the State of Israel around the world. The activities of Breaking the Silence are extremely anti-Israeli and are perceived as such by the majority of Israeli society.
“The organization works in various ways against Israel: They lie both within Israel and around the world, claiming that many IDF soldiers are ‘war criminals.’ Several of these organizations deal with promoting lawsuits against IDF soldiers and officers in Israel and around the world. They hold events at the United Nations and participate in conventions held by the European Union, where they falsely present the State of Israel as an apartheid state, a state that practices ethnic cleansing, and other horrifying lies. In interviews to the international media they claim that the soldiers of the IDF are war criminals, that the State of Israel is a war criminal. They defend terrorists in court, even those who were caught in the act, and file petitions for their release and against revoking their Israeli citizenship. These organizations take legal action to prevent the destruction of terrorists’ houses by the state, and defame the state of Israel in every arena possible.
“Their actions, the things they say and write against the State of Israel and IDF soldiers in the foreign press feeds anti-Israel and anti-Zionist campaigns, and even terror organizations such as Hamas quote from things Breaking the Silence say during Hamas actions against the State of Israel on the international stage.
“The worst of it is not that you support and fund these organizations, but that so do European countries and Palestinian foundations. Palestinians fund their actions. The question is whether you, dear donor, knew of this activity. Does it reflect your values and do you agree that this is the use for the money which you donate to these organizations?
“Dear lover of Israel – don’t let these Foreign Agent organizations, funded by foreign governments, tear away at Israeli democracy. Don’t let them tamper with the State of Israel.
Sergeant Bar Shalev, Judea and Samaria Division
Air Force Officer Daniel Salame
Lieutenant Ofir Levine, Engineering Corps
Staff Sergeant Ori Moskovich, Unit 926
Sergeant Major Matan Milles, 3 Squadron, The Navy
Staff Sergeant Chaim Prince, Engineering Corps
Staff Sergeant Aviad Harush, Unit 7002
Staff Sergeant Ilana Valdman, The Home Front Command
First Sergeant Hanani Ladel, Regiment 188
Staff Sergeant Almog Qashty, The Military Police
Sergeant Major Ze’ev Lev, Unit 7012
Staff Sergeant Eli Baraz, Regional Brigade Binyamin
Staff Sergeant Matan Haratz, Unit 710
Sergeant Major Lev Liberman, Central Command
Sergeant Major Matan Arad, Supply Unit 91
Staff Sergeant Naama Carmel, Intelligence
Staff Sergeant Tzur Ofir, Unit 9135
Staff Sergeant Ariel Iskov, Unit 868
Staff Sergeant Uria Peled, Air Defense Forces
Sergeant Major Nadav Simantov, Unit 43