'A danger to Israeli democracy'?
The proposed law, introduced by Justice Minister Ayelet Shaked, was approved by a cabinet committee Dec. 27 and sent to the Knesset, where it faces additional debate and votes. It would apply to those organizations that receive more than half their funding from “foreign government entities.” The groups would be required to identify themselves as principally funded from overseas in any public communications and in interactions with government officials, and they would have to list the sources of funding in reports. Members of the groups would also be required to wear a special badge when present in the Knesset, with their name and the name of the NGO. This is now a requirement of lobbyists. Violations could result in stiff fines.Apparently the Post has never heard of a US law called the Foreign Agents Registration Act. This was lifted from a Facebook page.
The Foreign Agents Registration Act (FARA) was enacted in 1938. FARA is a disclosure statute that requires persons acting as agents of foreign principals in a political or quasi-political capacity to make periodic public disclosure of their relationship with the foreign principal, as well as activities, receipts and disbursements in support of those activities. Disclosure of the required information facilitates evaluation by the government and the American people of the statements and activities of such persons in light of their function as foreign agents. The FARA Registration Unit of the Counterintelligence and Export Control Section (CES) in the National Security Division (NSD) is responsible for the administration and enforcement of the Act.Most of the groups that would be forced to register in Israel are Leftist groups which are funded by foreign governments. The Post itself notes that most Rightist groups will not be affected because their foreign funding comes mostly from individuals.
The Post blinds itself to the difference between the pernicious influence of a foreign government which acts out of its own self-interest and those of an individual who in any event is unlikely to be an actor in foreign relations. Hopefully Israel's Knesset will be smart enough to ignore the Post and see the difference - just like Congress did nearly 80 years ago.
The bill is definitely not a danger to Israeli democracy.