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US rabbis urge halt to Jewish charitable donations to far-right Israeli hate groups 

Israeli police officers stand in front of demonstrators linked to the Lehava Zionist hate group at Damascus Gate in al-Quds. (File photo)

Charitable donations from the US Zionist Jewish community are funding far-right Israeli hate groups and inciting anti-Palestinian violence across the occupied territories, 19 American rabbis privately warned in a letter following the Israeli regime’s 11-day military aggression against Gaza last May.

The group, which includes several prominent rabbis, decided to go public with their pleas after reportedly being rebuffed by the purported Jewish charity and the persistence of growing attacks against local Palestinians by extremist Zionist militants across occupied Palestine, the UK-based Middle East Monitor reported Friday.

In the letter, organized by the Jewish human rights group called T'ruah, the 19 New York rabbis stated that donations from the so-called Jewish Communal Fund (JCF) -- a major US-based “charity” with a $2.4 billion fund -- is going to Lehava, a far-right Israeli hate group that promotes Jewish supremacy in historic Palestine, according to the report.

The rabbis, it noted, focused on the “charitable donations” from the JCF to yet another purported US non-profit group called the Central Fund of Israel (CFI).

"We have been disturbed to learn that one recipient of JCF funding is the Central Fund of Israel, which is one of the primary US vehicles for donations to Israeli groups that funnel money to Lehava," the letter read, insisting that the extremist Zionist group led a violent march through Jerusalem (al-Quds) last June.

Lehava members, the rabbis further emphasized, "helped to incite war" and to organize a "hate-filled march through East Jerusalem."

During last year's annual flag march in occupied Palestine, Israeli far-right supremacists shared selfies posing with guns and messages such as "Tonight we are not Jews, we are Nazis." A report by international human rights groups on the conduct of Israeli regime police officers during May and June's crackdown on Palestinians found that the regime’s forces had failed to protect Palestinians from Zionist supremacists who had organized attacks and publicized their violent plans in advance.

The rights groups further verified 29 text and audio messages on open Telegram and WhatsApp channels revealing how the apps were used to recruit armed men and organize attacks on Palestinians in the Israeli-occupied cities such as Haifa, Acre, Nazareth and Lod between May 10 and 21.

In their letter, the rabbis described Lehava as a group "which bases itself in the genocidal philosophy of Meir Kahane," referring to the late hawkish rabbi who was the founder of the designated terrorist group called the Jewish Defense League (JDL) which operated across the US and Israel. 

They warned about the annual flag march and JCF's alleged complicity in funding groups connected to it. "Violent marches like these are not new," the rabbis insisted. "Every year on Jerusalem Day, Lehava and partners organize the Flag March, which similarly terrorizes Palestinians in East Jerusalem."

Another group mentioned in the letter as being funded by the CFI is the Od Yosef Chai Yeshiva. The American rabbis stress that the group is also “infamous for incitement and violence against Palestinians."

The report then goes on to cite the New York-based Jewish Telegraph Agency as revealing that CFI has been drawing criticism for over a decade because it is used as a financial conduit by extremist Zionist groups in occupied Palestine when they solicit donations in the US. 

Besides Lehava, the report added, the Central Fund is also linked to groups such as Honenu, “which gives money to Israeli Jews convicted of violent acts against Palestinians,” and Im Tirtzu, which once released a viral video in which it labeled the leaders of four major Israeli human rights organizations "foreign agents," predictably igniting a wave of death threats.

According to the US tax-collecting agency -- the Internal Revenue Service (IRS), CFI received $1.6 million last year from American “charitable donations” and a total of $23 million since 2002.

Many purported “Jewish” organizations across the US in effect operate as lobby groups to promote the Israeli regime’s interests in American domestic and foreign policies. They are widely censured for racist practices and falsely linking any criticism of the Israeli regime as “anti-Jewish” or “anti-Semitism.”

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