Jerusalem-based NGO Monitor released a report on Thursday stating that USAID-funded Palestinian NGOs introduced children to released convicted terrorists.The terrorists were imprisoned for various acts, including carrying out shooting attacks, stabbings, arms smuggling, illegally funding terror organizations, kidnapping and murder of Israeli citizens, ministers, IDF soldiers as well as tourists, among others.
The report noted that the NGOs presented the terrorists as role models while publicly demonstrating “support for terrorists and US-designated terrorist organizations,” whether via social media, statements, events or protests.NGO Monitor worked off of public information that was readily available to USAID while it vetted secondary-grantees to implement the US-funded projects in the Palestinian territories.”Between the years 2015-2019, USAID allocated approximately $500 million on programs in the West Bank and Gaza,” NGO Monitor said in a statement.
“As detailed in this report, the agency awarded $7.2 million to 6 Palestinian NGOs whose activities are inconsistent with American values and policies.”Some activities available to the youth organizations included the meetings with convicted terrorists, protests or events organized with “umbrella” organizations for various Palestinian terror groups and other events that incited children to advocate for the release of Palestinian prisoners in Israel – who are either known cells of Palestinian Islamic Jihad, Hamas or other terror organizations of the like.One such youth organizations was observed chanting: “We are with the prisoners until death… We are behind you until liberation… Resist until death… Intifada until death,” at a recent event. cnxps.cmd.push(function
Other examples included children participating in photo ops with the convicted terrorists, acting out plays condemning Israeli security tactics and singing songs about prisoners carrying out hunger strikes in prison, among others.Within the report, executive committee members, staff and official social media accounts belonging to many of these organizations also publicly showed their support for released terrorists.NGO Monitor further noted that many of these occurrences took place before grants were issued to these organizations, “indicating a failure to properly vet grantees” – several occurring within the grant period itself, indicating the need to continue monitoring these organizations after the grant period passes.It added that there have been “numerous failings” with regard to following the United States’ anti-terror vetting procedures performed before delving out grants to these groups.”To guarantee the integrity of US funding, USAID and primary grantees must conduct thorough vetting of potential partners,” said Director of Research at NGO Monitor Yona Schiffmiller.
“This must include publicly available information such as the websites and social media accounts of potential grantees and their key officials, as well as media reports, court documents, and other public records.””At this critical juncture, when the US intends to direct tens-of-millions of dollars for Gaza aid, ensuring a robust and effective vetting process is an absolute necessity to prevent aid diversion by terrorist organizations and extremist actors,” Schiffmiller said.