Ford Foundation, Big Funder of Israeli NGOs, Pulling Out

After being a target for political attacks during the past year, progressive nongovernmental organizations in Israel are now bracing for another hit: the loss of one of their largest donors. The Ford Foundation, which has provided $40 million to civil society NGOs in Israel since 2003, will not resume its funding for programs in Israel once its current grant round ends in two years. The reason, the organization explains, has to do with changing priorities, not with politics.

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Israelis Argue on Behalf Of U.S. Detainee Rights

The contending sides in Zia-ur-Rahman’s detention case are hardly a surprise. On Rahman’s behalf, the American Civil Liberties Union argues that the 27-year-old Afghan’s indefinite detention by American authorities — without right to counsel or judicial review — at Bagram airfield, outside Kabul, violates his right to due process. On the other side, the Pentagon, under President Obama no less than under his predecessor, President Bush, maintains that a noncitizen being held on foreign territory in an arena of combat does not enjoy the due process rights of this country’s citizens.

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Juliano Mer-Khamis, Activist Who Lived in Two Worlds, Murdered in Jenin

Like his life and his work, Juliano Mer-Khamis’s funeral procession cut across boundaries: It made its way from Haifa, crossing an Israeli army checkpoint to stop in the West Bank Palestinian town of Jenin and ended up at Kibbutz Ramot Menashe in northern Israel, where the slain filmmaker and actor was laid to rest and where his mother and fellow activist Arna Mer is buried.

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Paul Libin, Broadway Powerhouse and Alum of Workman’s Circle Schools, Honored

“In 1922, in a small village in Russia, not far from Minsk [Moghilev], my father returned from the warehouse he was in charge of,” said Paul Libin, executive vice president of Jujamcyn Theaters and recipient, at UJA-Federation of New York’s March 28 dinner, of the Excellence in Theater Award. The dinner was held at the St. Regis New York. “Villagers broke into the warehouse. Unable to explain the food shortage and fearing he would be tried and most likely executed, that night, he left for America. He was 23…..

Rabbi Jill Jacobs Will Head Rabbis for Human Rights-North America

Jewish social justice guru Jill Jacobs is known for her vocal advocacy work on behalf of society’s most marginalized, including undocumented workers and the poor. Now, as newly appointed executive director of Rabbis for Human Rights-North America, she will engage with the most incendiary issue in American Jewish life: public criticism of Israel for its treatment of Palestinians.

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