Outgoing Ambassador to Israel Tom Nides personally approved a $1 million grant to a program aimed at delegitimizing Israel, the Washington Free Beacon reported this week.
The report, verified by emails obtained by the America First Legal Foundation through a Freedom of Information Act request, says that Nides personally signed the documents needed for the State Department to grant $987,654 to groups investigating alleged human rights abuses in Israel, the West Bank, and the Gaza Strip.
Those applying for the grant were instructed to probe the Israeli government for “documentation of legal or security sector violations and housing, land, and property rights.” In other words, the grant money empowers groups critical of Israel to delegitimize it by advancing the false agenda that Israel abuses Palestinians and steals their land.
“Best news to wake up to on a Monday!” one State Department employee wrote upon receiving confirmation that the grant had been approved.
A State Department spokesman refused to comment on the report, saying, “as a general matter, we do not discuss internal government communications.”
The Free Beacon‘s first report on the taxpayer-funded grant in March 2022 prompted a congressional investigation and accusations from Republican politicians that the Biden administration is working to strengthen the BDS movement against Israel.
However, the State Department told the Free Beacon that the grant had been canceled but later clarified that “no grant was awarded for this funding opportunity.” The spokesperson would not explain further or provide the Free Beacon with updated information about the funding proposal.
“As the review of proposals is part of internal deliberations processes within the Department of State, we are unable to publicly share details regarding status or outcomes,” the spokesperson said.
(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)