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Israel government minister slams George Soros for funding groups ‘demonizing’ Jewish state

JERUSALEM Israel’s minister of diaspora affairs and social equality told Fox News Digital on Thursday that Alex Soros is a mirror image of father George’s anti-Israel agenda. Alex recently took over the reins of the 92-year-old’s $25 billion fortune.

When asked if Alex will continue to fund anti-Israel entities that bash the Jewish state, Amichai Chikli said it “looks like the son is a replica of his father. We have no expectation that his son will be a big Zionist.

Chikli, an outspoken critic of organizations that seek to strip Israel of its legitimacy as a Jewish state, singled out two American NGOs that he said George Soros and his Open Society Foundations fund.

“Human Rights Watch (HRW), this organization is attacking Israelis heavily and attacking Israel as an apartheid state and delegitimizing and demonizing Israel,” the minister said.

Chikli added that Soros and his Open Society Foundations also funds J Street, an organization that claims to be pro-Israel but has faced criticism because of its support for positions that allegedly favor Iran’s regime and the Palestinians, including a recently reported anti-Israel event in Congress by Democrat Rep. Rashida Tlaib of Michigan.

Israeli's rally in support of judicial reforms

More than 200,000 people demonstrated in support of the Israeli government and its controversial legal overhaul in Jerusalem on April 27, 2023. (Matan Golan/SOPA Images/LightRocket via Getty Images)

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Chikli said “J Street pushed for her Nakba event in Congress. When they compare the Nakba with the Holocaust, this is the twisted Palestinian way of distorting reality.”

The Palestinians use the word “Nakba” or “catastrophe” on May 15 – the same day as the 75th anniversary of Israel’s modern founding – to commemorate Palestinians who, they claim, fled or were forced from their homes.

Chikli noted that the Soros foundation “gives money to radical small Palestinian organizations in Israel that describe Israel as a colonial state and a moral sin.” He cited the NGO Adalah, which means “justice” in Arabic, as an organization “denying the vision of Israel as a Jewish state” in its “published vision for Arab society in Israel.”

Minister of Diaspora Affairs Amichai Chikli

Israeli Minister of Diaspora Affairs Amichai Chikli speaks during the Israeli American Council 8th annual National Summit on Jan. 19, 2023, in Austin, Texas. (Shahar Azran/Getty Images)

Adalah, HRW and J Street did not respond to Fox News Digital requests for comment by time of publication.

Chikli also took George Soros and his funded NGOs to task for their refusal to recognize the modern definition of antisemitism as outlined by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA).

The Israeli minister said George Soros is the “No. 1 activist fighting the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance,” adding that a “Holocaust survivor” opposing IHRA is “absurd.”

Alex Soros, son of George Soros

Alex Soros attends a dinner speech event hosted by his father, George Soros, billionaire and founder of Soros Fund Management LLC, at the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, May 24, 2022. (Jason Alden/Bloomberg via Getty Images)

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Chikli said George Soros is not opposing the IHRA definition with his name but with donations to organizations that he funds (HRW and J Street), which seek to block the implementation of the definition.

In a June 3 opinion article for CNN, Alex Soros, the chair of the Open Society Foundations, blasted the IHRA definition of antisemitism because it includes language that deems some attacks against Israel as antisemitic.

For example, the IHRA definition defines antisemitism as “Drawing comparisons of contemporary Israeli policy to that of the Nazis.” The IHRA definition of modern antisemitism has been adopted by the European Union, the United States and more than 40 countries. 

Kosovo became the second Muslim-majority country last week to adopt the IHRA definition when its parliament voted in favor of it. The president of Kosovo, Vjosa Osmani-Sadriu, tweeted that the move means Kosovo is “standing against antisemitism, hatred and prejudice.”

Critics of Alex Soros view his efforts to undercut a popular and mainstream definition of antisemitism as turning back the clock on the fight against antisemitism in the name of a backward left-wing ideology.

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Palestinians protesting

Palestinians wave their national flag during a protest against an Israeli parade through Jerusalem’s Old City on May 18, 2023. (AP Photo/Fatima Shbair)

Alex Soros wrote that “critics grew increasingly concerned that the definition had been ‘hijacked’ by some pro-Israeli groups to shield the government from accountability for its human rights policies, as a group of 100 scholars wrote in a statement urging the U.N. not to adopt the IHRA language.”

Fox News Digital has reported over the years on alleged anti-Israel and antsemitism scandals that have plagued the world body.

Alex Soros added in his article that “It is essential that the tools used to combat antisemitism cannot be repurposed to target academics, activists, students and advocacy groups that voice support for Palestinian human rights.”

Chikli fired back: “Shamefully, his son is fighting the International Holocaust Remember Alliance.”

Alex Soros and the Open Society Foundations did not immediately respond to Fox News Digital press queries.

Rabbi Abraham Cooper, the associate dean of the Los Angeles-based human rights organization Simon Wiesenthal Center, told Fox News Digital, “If I had $25 billion to put in play, I would stay far from politically linked institutions and instead focus on helping to transform societies by helping guarantee universal education and health care for billions of people who currently do not have full access to these fundamentals. In the Gulf and Maghreb, I would invest in projects that would give young people jobs and with it hope for a brighter future; environmental projects that would provide clean water, air and energy – would benefit all people.”

Cooper continued “If Soros Junior wants to make a long-lasting contribution to transforming the world, he would also do well to roll up his sleeves and personally help the poor and indigent. Money alone will never guarantee results – not in parts of the world where billions in aid have poured into countries, some of which are failed states.”

Protests

Protesters wave flags as thousands of Israelis attend a rally against the Israeli government’s judicial overhaul plan on March 27, 2023, in Jerusalem. (Amir Levy/Getty Images)

The prominent rabbi added, “And as for Israel and Jewish people the world over, remember Jews also have needs and also have rights. Show respect to the lone Jewish state, which had it existed in 1939, the Nazi Holocaust, the murder of 6 million Jews and the disastrous impact on children, like his father, would never had happened.”

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George Soros survived the Holocaust in Hungary. Rachel Ehrenfeld, who published “The Soros Agenda” in April, told Fox News Digital that she expects “Alexander to increase his funding of progressive left, globalized and woke agendas and support anti-U.S. and anti-Israel organizations.”

Her book devotes a chapter to Soros-funded organizations that “criminalize the state of Israel,” she said.

Former federal prosecutor Will Scharf, a co-founder of Jews Against Soros (JAS), told Fox News Digital that “Alex Soros should go back to being The Hamptons playboy he used to be and steer clear of politics before he does even more profound damage to the United States, Israel and every other country that Soros groups are currently active in.”

Scharf, who is running for Attorney General in Missouri on the Republican ticket, added” Where George Soros goes, destruction follows. Soros has spent billions funding causes that I would spend a lifetime opposing, ranging from soft-on-crime prosecutors in large American cities to the BDS movement and anti-Israel activism. It is an honor to speak out publicly against him on behalf of Jews around the world who oppose his agenda.”

George Soros delivers a speech during the 2023 Munich Security Conference on Thursday.

George Soros delivers a speech during the 2023 Munich Security Conference. Soros has backed the campaigns of progressive prosecutors across the U.S. (Open Society Foundations/YouTube/Video screenshot)

Former Deputy Assistant Secretary of State Joel Rubin told Fox News Digital, I think that what is really important to understand is that American Jews are overwhelmingly liberal and democratic. And their support for peace between Israel and the Palestinians is accepted.”

Rubin added, “Chikli is making an argument that is out of date and ignores the reality of the American Jewish community. The way to engage American Jews is not to call them anti-Israel. It would be more useful to understand this perspective to strengthen [the] relationship between Israel and the United States.”

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Antony Blinken

Secretary of State Antony Blinken speaks during the J Street National Conference at the Omni Shoreham Hotel in Washington, D.C., on Dec. 4, 2022. (AP Photo/Carolyn Kaster)

The perspective of American Jews is “nothing out of the mainstream” and can be “compared to Israelis who oppose [the] current government” in the row over judicial reform in the Jewish state, he said.

“It is important to grow support for Israel, and that means engaging the Jewish community who have different views. That is what we get in a democratic culture,” said Rubin.

When asked about the Open Society Foundations funding anti-Israel NGOs, Rubin said, “The Open Society has been one of the most significant and impactful organizations in over three decades in promoting democracy. That funding has advanced human rights and democracy around the world.”

He cited the groundwork of Open Society Foundations in promoting democracy in the post-communist states in Eastern Europe.

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