The Alliance for Global Justice, a prominent left-wing charity platform based in the US said on Tuesday it lost its ability to process credit card donations over its ties to a terror group.
The Alliance served as a conduit for donors to receive tax deductible receipts for donations made to Samidoun, an organization affiliated with the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), which has been designated as a terrorist organization by Israel, the US, European Union, Canada, Australia and Japan.
Concerns about the connection between the Alliance and Samidoun were first raised by the Zachor Legal Institute, a US-based legal advocacy organization, which filed a complaint with the Internal Revenue Service. The complaint caught the attention of the Washington Examiner‘s investigative reporter Gabe Kaminsky. Zachor’s letter to federal authorities noted that Samidoun was one of seven NGOs banned by Israel as fronts for the PFLP in 2021.
Although Samidoun is not a registered charity in the US, donors could receive US tax receipts through the common fundraising practice known as “fiscal sponsorship.” This is where non-profit organizations provide their legal and tax-exempt status to other groups engaged in like-minded activities. This arrangement is usually contractual.
Kaminsky reached out to NGO-Monitor, a Jerusalem-based organization that monitors the activities of non-governmental organizations. NGO-Monitor’s director of communications, Itai Reuveni told the Tazpit Press Service that his organization had researched the Alliance several years ago, “but nothing interesting came up.”
Reuveni told TPS that NGO-Monitor did some new checking and found that one of groups receiving money from the Alliance was Samidoun.
“Samidoun is a designated terror organization in Israel. It’s affiliated with the PFLP,” Reuveni said. “Both Germans and Dutch leaders blocked Samidoun officials from entering their countries over incitement and antisemitism.”
Reuveni explained that Samidoun “is in charge of the civil activities of the PFLP in Europe. They are very invested in pushing discussions of ‘political prisoners’ who are members of the PFLP.”
Samidoun is also involved in Boycott Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) activities in Europe.
The Alliance announced on its website that it is unable to process credit card donations and insisted it did not support terror.
“We do not support terrorism,” the Alliance said. “We do not raise money nor do we give any material support to terrorist groups in Palestine or elsewhere – and we have the evidence to back this up. We do work for a just peace and an end to the real terrorism of warfare, sanctions, imperialism, global capitalism, and white supremacy.”
Ron Machol, COO of the Zachor Legal Institute said, “We are delighted that the first of the major American charities fundraising for terrorist organizations is now unable to collect credit card donations. Money is the lifeblood of terror organizations, and drying up their resources will make it impossible for them to carry on business as usual.”
Samidoun wasn’t the only problematic organization receiving money from the Alliance. Another organization getting money was the France-based Collectif Palestine Vaincra, which was shut down by French authorities in March 2022 for being antisemitic and anti-Israel.
But Reuveni said the Alliance has not been transparent about how much money was transferred or to where.
“The Alliance doesn’t have to reveal its figures to the public. They do have to report to the IRS and maybe you can find all the money they gave, but not the original donors,” he said.
“I don’t think we’re talking about huge amounts of money, but the Alliance is a tax-exempt organization that can deliver money to terror groups around the world.”
Asked about the significance of the Alliance losing its fundraising platform, Reuveni stressed that it’s hard to say, because, “Maybe in a few months, the credit card companies and the IRS will decide that there was no major harm.”
Reuveni added that this isn’t the first time that terror groups were able to receive money through “fiscal sponsorship” arrangements.
“Our experience shows that for a long, long time when it comes to credit companies and companies like Paypal, they’re not playing games.”