US Congress launches investigation into outside funding to anti-Israel campus demonstrations

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An anti-Israel encampment at NYU. (Twitter Screenshot)

The inquiry follows suspicions that recent anti-Israel protests on college campuses, involving illegal occupations, were backed by significant external funding and support.

By Dion J. Pierre, The Algemeiner

The US House of Representatives has launched an investigation into 20 nonprofit organizations that are currently funding anti-Zionist student groups mounting pro-Hamas demonstrations on college campuses, an effort aimed at uncovering long suspected links to terrorist organizations and other hostile foreign entities.

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As part of the inquiry, US Reps. Virginia Foxx (R-NC) and James Comer (R-KY) wrote to Treasury Secretary Janet Yellen on Tuesday, asking her to share any “suspicious activity reports” generated by the activities of Students for Justice in Palestine, Jewish Voice for Peace, American Muslims for Palestine, Tides Foundation, Rockefeller Brothers Fund, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, the Council on American-Islamic Relations, and other groups.

Foxx and Comer chair the House Committee on Education and the Workforce and the House Committee on Oversight and Accountability, respectively.

“The committees are investigating the sources of funding and financing for groups who are organizing, leading, and participating in pro-Hamas, antisemitic, anti-Israel, and anti-American protests with illegal encampments on American college campuses,” Foxx and Comer wrote in their letter to Yellen.

“This investigation relates to both malign influence on college campuses and to the national security implications of such influence on faculty and student organizations.”

The inquiry comes amid widespread suspicion that an eruption of anti-Zionist protests on college campuses, in which students illegally occupied sections of section and refused to leave unless their schools agreed to condemn and boycott Israel, was fueled by immense financial and logistical support from outside groups.

Foxx and Comer said in their letter that the investigation’s findings will inform recommendations for new federal laws requiring increased transparency and reporting of foreign contributions to American colleges and universities.

On Tuesday, Foxx told the Washington Free Beacon, which first reported the investigation, that the protests were a symptom of a larger threat to national security.

“It’s no coincidence that the day after the October 7 Hamas terrorist attack, antisemitic mobs began springing up at college campuses across the country,” Foxx said.

“These protests have been coordinated and well organized, indicating that outside groups or influences may be at play. American education is under attack. It’s critical that Congress investigates how these groups — who are tearing apart our institutions — are being funded and advised before it’s too late.”

Foreign links to the anti-Zionist student movement have been the subject of numerous comprehensive studies.

Last week, the Network Contagion Research Institute (NCRI) published a report showing a connection between the anti-Zionist group Shut It Down for Palestine (SID4P) — a group formed immediately after Hamas’ massacre on Oct. 7 — and the Chinese Communist Party (CCP).

NCRI explained that SID4P, which organized numerous traffic-obstructing demonstrations after Oct. 7, is an umbrella group for several other organizations which compose the “Singham Network,” a consortium of far-left groups funded by Neville Roy Singham and Jodie Evans.

The report describes Singham and Evans as a “power couple within the global far-left movement” whose affiliation with the CCP has been copiously documented.

“The Singham Network exploits regulatory loopholes in the US nonprofit system to facilitate the flow of an enormous sum of US dollars to organizations and movements that actively stoke social unrest at the grassroots level,” the report said.

“Alternative media outlets associated with the Singham Network have played a central role in online mobilization and cross-platform social amplification for SID4P.”

In 2022, the National Association of Scholars (NAS) revealed that one of the founders of Students for Justice in Palestine, Hatem Bazian, is also a co-founder of American Muslims for Palestine, an advocacy group which, NAS said, “retains ties to terrorist groups operating in the Palestinian Territories.”

NAS added that the Palestinian Campaign for the Academic Cultural Boycott of Israel — which has been influential is steering the boycott, divestment, and sanctions (BDS) movement against Israel in academia — is “structurally linked” to Palestinian terrorist organizations through the Council of National and Islamic Forces in Palestine — a member of the Palestinian BDS National Committee which comprises Hamas, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), Popular Front-General Command, Palestinian Liberation Front, and Palestinian Islamic Jihad.

“On the one hand, BDS is designed to secure political legitimacy vis-á-vis Israel, with boycotts and divestment offering Palestinian activists and terrorists new domains to assert their cause,” NAS senior fellow Ian Oxnevad wrote. “On the other hand, BDS, along with the formation of multiple NGOs and nonprofit organizations, offers the Palestinians new avenues by which to access funding in a post-9/11 international financial system designed to curtail funding for terrorism.”

Source: World Israel News

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