"These are the records of the Mishkan, the Tabernacle of the Pact, which were drawn up at Moses’ bidding..."
According to Midrash, after the Mishkan (Tabernacle) was completed, some Israelites accused Moses of misusing their donations. Moses’ response was a full accounting of every piece of jewelry, gold, and precious stone that the people had offered.
We should ask no less of our communal leaders today.
T’ruah seeks transparency and accountability in how U.S. donor funds are spent in Israel and the occupied Palestinian territories. A "follow the money" approach not only brings transparency to the foreign actors shaping realities on the ground, but has the potential to reduce the funding these groups receive and meaningfully reduce their ability to do harm.
Our work includes:
Ending tax benefits for terrorists.
T'ruah shines light on far-right American Jewish charities that fund Israeli terrorist groups — in direct violation of U.S. law, which forbids tax-exempt dollars from going to terrorist organizations.
Since 2016, T'ruah has filed a series of complaints with the IRS about the Central Fund of Israel (CFI), the Charity of Light Fund, and others.
T’ruah achieved a major victory in 2016, after exposing that Honenu — a group that was giving cash payments to Israelis convicted of terrorism and to their families — was receiving tax exempt donations through the Central Fund of Israel, a U.S. foundation. The IRS investigated, and Central Fund of Israel cut off funding to Honenu until the latter ended this practice.
In 2022, we organized a letter from 19 prominent New York City rabbis to the donor-advised Jewish Communal Fund, warning them that some of their donors' money is making its way to Lehava via CFI. In the past 20 years, JCF has sent over $23 million to the Central Fund of Israel, which in turn funds groups that funnel money to Lehava, a militant offshoot of Kahane Chai, led by Kahanist Rabbi Bentzi Gopstein. As of today, the Jewish Communal Fund has not taken action to ensure their donors' money does not fund terrorism.
Bringing attention to the far-right donors in the U.S. eroding democracy in Israel
From the American billionaires behind the Kohelet Policy Forum — originator of some of Israel's most undemocratic legislation — to the powerful Miami-based Falic family, which funnels cash to Lehava, funds from individual American donors have helped to drive the current attack on Israeli democracy, including the ongoing occupation and the chipping away of basic civil rights. Read our CEO Rabbi Jill Jacobs's op-ed in The Forward: "How did Israeli democracy come under threat? Follow the money."
Monitoring and exposing how American Jewish charities spend U.S. donor funds to promote settlement expansion and occupation.
The American arm of the Jewish National Fund, JNF-USA, is well known for planting trees in Israel. In 2015 and 2016, as part of T'ruah's successful “Transparency in Funding” (also known as “Eifo George,” after the campaign video) campaign, we produced two videos calling on the JNF-USA to be transparent about the fact that a portion of the money it raised went over the Green Line to Jewish settlements in the West Bank.
As a result of our campaign, which was covered in the Forward, Haaretz and elsewhere, JNF-USA began listing its funding in Israel and the West Bank in greater (although not complete) detail on its 990 tax forms.