Last week Israeli diplomats complained to their Belgian counterparts over Brussels’s funding of anti-Zionist nongovernmental organizations with such goals as “mitigating the influence of pro-Israel voices”—some of which have ties to terrorist groups. The editors of the Jerusalem Post comment:
Belgium would not fund other similar groups, such as Catalan or Kurdish separatists, under the same logic. . . . We hope that Belgium’s decisions reflect not having enough information about where the funding goes and the way in which some Palestinian groups use the money they receive through legitimate charities in Europe to disseminate extreme anti-Israel content produced in Ramallah and spread around the world.
Unfortunately, many Palestinian groups, such as the PFLP, [an unrepentant terrorist group with a bloodstained history], have wrapped themselves in a false flag of human rights, and even children’s and women’s rights, so they can systematically hijack international forums to advance their extreme anti-Israel agenda.
[Channeling funds to such groups] is not countries show respect for one another’s sovereignty, [especially if] they claim, [as Belgium does], to want to have a future of fraternal relations. Belgium needs to understand that the goals of these groups are clear: when they use maps that do not show Israel or celebrate “martyrs” who murdered civilians, they are not partners to work with to advance human rights.
In the past, Israel tended to ignore this funding and not challenge it, not seeing the full forest of implications that it had on the education of future generations. We now know better.