Post 89: Washington Post’s factS about campaign funding against Likud: ASSERSTIONS THAT Israeli Election WAS Subject to Massive and Blatant Subversion: some funny sayings for your seder, goat milk Ice-cream permitted on Passover

Here’s the evidence for Natanyahu’s claim that “Millions” were spent to defeat him. And what’s his evidence for his claim?

The Facts

Netanyahu’s claims of foreign involvement were not new to Israelis. In recent months, his party, Likud, has made repeated accusations that “leftist” NGOs were illegally getting funds from foreign donors in order to influence the election outcome — claims that were repeatedly denied.

Netanyahu campaign officials provided The Fact Checker with a list of organizations that they said were active in the Israeli elections “with the political goal of replacing Netanyahu as prime minister.” In a statement, the campaign said “the costs of their activities far exceed $10 million.”

Notably, the campaign did not claim that any of this funding came from the U.S. government. Netanyahu, in his election-eve statement, carefully spoke of “foreign associations.”

Among the organizations cited by the campaign:

  • “A Million Hands,” an NGO, organized the massive demonstration “Israel Wants Change.” Netanhayu says it was funded by foreign donors, primarily Daniel Lubetzky and S. Daniel Abraham, and “cost hundreds of thousands of shekels, and its promotion cost hundreds of thousands of shekels more,” the campaign said. (A shekel is worth about 25 cents.) The total cost of the activity of “A Million Hands” to replace Netanyahu was $6 million to $7 million, the campaign asserted, though an article it cited did not contain that figure. (Update: Dror Ben-Ami, co-founder of Million Hands, denied the claims by the Netanyahu campaign. He said in a statement that “the campaign’s total budget, including the rally, was several hundred thousand dollars, only part of which was raised in the U.S.” He said that Million Hands was founded by three Israelis, on a volunteer basis and that “much of the funding was raised from the founders’ own pockets, friends and concerned individuals in Israel.” He added that “we approached U.S. funders; they did not seek us out. In particular, Mr. Lubetzky has never contributed to our campaign.” He also said Million Hands is not affiliated with any political party.)
  • V15 (“Victory 15”), which is tied to a U.S. group called OneVoice and included the involvement of a former top Obama campaign aide. “The activity of V15, and especially its activity on election day, was several million dollars, the overwhelming majority of which came from American donors,” the campaign claimed. A spokesman for OneVoice promised a response, but we have not received one–despite repeated requests, even after the publication of this column.
  • “Commanders for the Security of Israel,” a group of former generals, which the campaign said was funded to the tune of “hundreds of thousands of shekels.” That’s maybe $100,000 to $200,000.
  • Ameinu, another group, sponsored a get-out-the-vote campaign in the Arab community. The campaign cited a fundraising documentfrom December that sought $3 million, but Ameinu president Kenneth Bob said it turned out to be “closer to $2 million.” He said the effort was “nonpartisan” and intended to improve Arab participation. Though he acknowledged that Arabs tend to support left-leaning candidates, he noted that a Druze candidate on the Likud list also benefited from the group’s work.
  • Activities of political strategist Eyal Arad, which the campaign said was funded primarily by American donors and cost “several million dollars.” Arad has denied that claim, shooting back back that in 1994 Netanyahu had offered him a job that would have been funded by a “foreign and unnamed businessman.” (Netanyahu’s campaign denied it.)

The campaign added that “there are many other organizations” dedicated to replacing Netanyahu funded by foreign donors, pointing specifically to the New Israel Fund, which aims for a resolution of the Israel-Palestinian conflict and doles out about $25 million a year. But the Israel Fund has vehemently denied any funding, directly or indirectly, to pro-peace organizations active in the campaign.


Watchdog Group Says Professor Gerald M. Steinberg, President of watchdog group NGO Monitor, Israeli Election Subject to Massive and Blatant Subversion

MARCH 20, 2015 3:47 PM


avatarChris Coffey

Professor Gerald M. Steinberg, President of watchdog group NGO Monitor, said today that Israeli democracy suffers from the “severe problem of foreign interference.” Steinberg was responding to a Washington Post article, in which he was quoted, analyzing the role of foreign money in the Israeli election.

“No other democratic country in the world is subject to such massive interference and blatant subversion,” said Steinberg.

“Groups like V-15, OneVoice, Ameinu and the powerful New Israel Fund operate entirely outside Israeli government regulations and campaign financing laws, and this must end — no democracy can allow itself to be manipulated by unaccountable and irresponsible political frameworks.”

Earlier this week, Netanyahu warned that his political opponents in Israel’s general election on Tuesday were benefiting from “tens of millions” in foreign support.

The Washington Post published a story today about the amount of foreign money injected into the elections. While the paper said that there were millions in foreign money spent on the race, there was no evidence of tens of millions having been spent.

Steinberg praised The Washington Post piece for “highlighting the severe problem of foreign interference in and efforts to manipulate Israeli democracy,” but he thought it was too dismissive of European efforts to influence the elections.

“Kessler’s piece gave short shrift to the tens of millions of dollars provided annually by European governments to political groups such as B’tselem, Peace Now, and dozens more,” Steinberg said. “This practice is a form of modern imperialism, with the Europeans using money for NGOs as the main form of influence. All of these forms of interference and manipulation will be examined in detail in the Knesset in coming months.”

פינף קעגן איינס
אַן אָרעמאַן האָט זיך אַמאָל צערעדט פאַר זײַן חבר:
פינף זאַכן האָבּ איך שוין אויף פּסח. “דער פינגערצו די צען מכּות, “די זײַטאויף אָנלענען זיך, דאָס מויל אויף צו עסן, מרור פעלט מיר אויך נישט און כהאָבּ שוין מקיים געווען דעם פסוק פון ולא יראה לך חמץעס זאָל קײַן חמץ בּײַ דיר נישט געזען ווערן. נאָר דער איין מצוה פון שבעת ימים תּאכל מצותזיבּן טאָג זאָלסטו עסן מצה, מיט דעם מוטשע איך זיך נאָך דאָס צוזאַמענשטעלן
finf kegn eyns
an oreman hot zikh amol tseredt far zayn khaver:
finf zakhn hob ikh shoyn af pesakh. “der finger” tsu di tsen ma’kes, “di zayt” af onlenen zikh, dos moyl af tsu esn, moror felt mir oykh nit un khob shoyn meka’yem geven, ‘es zol kayn khomets ba dir nit gezen vern. nor der eyn mitsve fun, “zibn tog zolstu esn ma’tse”, mit dem mutshe ikh zikh nokh dos tsuzamenshtleln.”
Five vs. One
A poor man once disclosed to his friend: I already prepared five things for Pesach. 1)a finger for the ten plagues. (Every time one of the plagues is mentioned, we dip our finger in the wine and spill a drop. This reminds us that our cup of joy is not complete because people had to die for our salvation) 2) a side to lean on. (When the matzah is eaten for the first time, you eat it while leaning to the left) 3) A mouth to eat the food. 4)Marror I have no lack of. (Marror is bitter herbs eaten in keeping with the biblical commandment “with bitter herbs they shall eat it.” (Exodus 12:8) A bitter life is considered eating Marror). 5) I also fulfilled the Mitzva of “and there shall not be seen with thee leavened bread.” Only the one commandment of “thou shallt eat matzah for seven days” I am still struggling to put together…..
חמש נגד אחד
פעם עני אחד סיפר לחברו, חמש דברים יש לי כבר לפסח. האצבע כדי לטבול אותה ביין כשאומרים את המכות. הצד להישען עליו כשאוכלים מצה. הפה לאכול את הסעודות. מרור לא חסר לי. וקיימתי את הפסוק ולא יראה לך חמץ.”רק מצוה אחת של שבעת ימים תאכל מצותאני עדיין מתאבק בו..”.
רנפתלי ראָפּשיצער האָט איין יאָר נאָך דער שבּת הגדול דרשה געזאָגט, ” רבּונו של עולם מיר וועלן בּאַזאָרגן אַ כּשרן פּסח און דו בּאַזאָרג אונדז מיט אַ פריילעכן פּסח.”
R’ Naftali Ropshitser hot eyn yor nokh der shabes hagodel droshe gezogt, “Ribono Shel Olom, mir veln bazorgn a koshern Pesakh un du bazorg undz mit a freylekhn Pesakh.”
in English
Rabbi Naftali Ropshitzer said one year after he finished his Shabbos Hagadol ceremony, “Creator of the Universe, we will supply a kosher Passover and you supply us with a happy Passover.”
in Hebrew
רנפתלי מרופשיץ בדרשה של שבת הגדול ביקש מאלוקים בקשה. ”ריבונו של עולם ,אנחנו נדאג שהבית שלנו יהיה כשר בחג, ואתה תדאג שהבית שלנו יהיה שמח בחג“.

Goat milk ice cream


4 C goat’s milk (aka 1 Quart)

1 C sugar

3/4 tsp vanilla

zest of 1 lemon

pinch of kosher salt

4 egg yolks


Warm milk, sugar, vanilla and salt in sauce pan until sugar dissolves. Beat and temper egg yolks, add to milk. Add lemon zest. Cook for ~2 mins, stirring constantly. Remove from heat and strain. Refrigerate until completely chilled.

Churn and freeze.


Read More



Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s