Step aside Sheldon Adelson — One Florida family responsible for half of Netanyahu campaign contributions

Israel/PalestineUS Politics
on 14 Comments
simon falic
Simon Falic (right) speaking at a North American Free Trade Agreement event in 2005. (Photo: The United States-Mexico Chamber of Commerce/Flickr).

After it was announced yesterday that Israeli elections will take place this January, Haaretz revisited Benjamin Netanyahu’s campaign contributions and found a staggering 96.8% of the prime minister’s support came from foreign donors. And of these donations, over half came from one American family –  the Falic family of Miami, Florida. The Falics own the airport chain Duty Free Americas and are the former owners of the House of Christian Lacroix. Through their private foundation they support excavations in the West Bank, built a “welcome center” in a settlement, and fund student field trips to illegal outposts in the occupied Palestinian territories.

falic family
Archeological site funded by the Falic Family Foundation. (Photo: My Right Word)

Pictures posted in 2011 on the blog My Right Word confirm the Falic family is sponsoring an archeological dig near the settlement of Shilo.

Additionally after the family patriarch, Fima Falic, passed away in January of this year, an obituary by the Zionist Organization of America applauded the family foundation and Fima’s son, a Netanyahu and Romney donor, Simon Falic, for funding youth trips to a settlement vineyard:

ZOA has greatly benefited from the Falics’ generous support in Judea and Samaria. Only a few weeks ago, during the ZOA Student Leadership Mission to Israel, ZOA students were brought to the Psagot Winery and Binyamin Welcome Center owned by Fima Falic’s son, Simon Falic. Several of the students attending the mission had even been sponsored by the Falic Family Foundation.

Falic
Falic (right) with with John Boehner, speaker of House.
(Photo: Col live/Haaretz)

At the beginning of this month Alex Kane and Phil Weiss reported the Falic family not only financed Netanyahu’s campaign but also American politicians. Kane and Weiss said the Falic family donated to both Mitt Romney’s presidential campaign and gave over $130,000 to Debbie Wasserman Schultz. Earlier this year during Romney’s publicity trip to Israel the Falic family was one of 47 donors who topped the GOP nominee’s “united Jerusalem” excursion off with $1 million in campaign contributions. During Netanyahu’s last campaign the Falic family raised NIS 165,000, approximately half of the total contributions.

Relying on overseas support is commonplace for top Israeli officials. Haaretz reported over half of all campaign contributions come from overseas:

More than half of the contributions to politicians in the past two years – 53 percent of the NIS 13 million – came from people who live overseas, cannot vote in Israel and are not directly impacted by the elected officials’ decisions.

And one minister of Knesset from the Likud party, Moshe Ya’alon, even received all of his campaign support from foreign donations.

Israeli campaign finance laws limit the amount of donations from foreign supporters, but in the case of the Falic family, multiple members of the same immediate family donated to the Prime Minister’s campaign. Haaretz said in total around 550 foreigners “are responsible for the big money behind Israel’s politicians.”

 

14 Responses

  1. Keith
    October 12, 2012, 4:57 pm

    This has interesting implications. Should Israel require Netanyahu and other Israel politicians to register as foreign agents of major donor countries? Does Netanyahu try to please Israeli voters or US Jewish Zionists? Is the dog versus tail analogy hopelessly outdated, what with the dog and tail both securely tethered to the US fat-cat leash? Are both US and Israeli politicians merely the hired employees of the global corporate empire?

    • Boston
      October 13, 2012, 8:29 am

      It ain’t like that. When it comes to Israel uber alles, they are all on the same page. All one. It’s not like it is Israeli Zionists vs. American Zionists

  2. pabelmont
    October 12, 2012, 7:42 pm

    Well, AIPAC is “like” Israel giving USA’s politicians money (money which USA gave Israel much, much more than), and so THIS is like Americans (well, I guess they are in fact Americans) giving Israeli politicians lots and lots of money.

    What is clear from both these facts is that MONEY and not democracy governs politics in both countries (probably also UK and perhaps many other countries as well) (most Anglophone countries, I’d surmise, and most unfettered-capitalist countries, because the money comes from the cheerfully-unfettered ones).

    So we’re all in the same happy basket, all us eggs, and certain parts of it sure look like echoes of a certain report (perhaps untrue at the time) of Protocols.

    Well, well.

  3. DICKERSON3870
    October 12, 2012, 10:16 pm

    RE: “And one minister of Knesset from the Likud party, Moshe Ya’alon, even received all of his campaign support from foreign donations.” ~ Allison Deger

    MY COMMENT: Bogie! ! !*

    BOGIE ‘EARNING HIS (FOREIGN) KEEP': “US [Read 'US' as 'Obama' - J.L.D.] is undermining military threat against Iran”, By Reuters, JPost.com Staff, 8/31/12

    . . . Vice Premier Moshe ["Bogie"] Ya’alon said on Friday he feared Iran did not believe it faced a real military threat from the outside world because of mixed messages from foreign powers, including the United States.
    “We have an exchange of views, including with our friends in the United States, who in our opinion, are in part responsible for this feeling in Iran,” he told Israel’s 100FM radio station. . .

    . . . Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu has said he will speak out about the dangers of Iran in an address next month to the UN General Assembly in New York.
    He is also expected to hold talks with US President Barack Obama during his visit. A senior Israeli official told Reuters this month that Netanyahu would be looking for a firm pledge of US military action if Iran does not back down. . .

    SOURCE – link to jpost.com

    • ALSO SEE: “Vice PM Moshe Ya’alon: Regime change in Ramallah will ultimately be necessary for peace talks to progress”, By Paul Mutter, Mondoweiss, 9/30/11
    LINK – link to mondoweiss.net

    • AND SEE: “Yaalon: Iran Has Choice to ‘Have Bomb or Survive’”, by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 12/15/11
    LINK – link to richardsilverstein.com

    • LASTLY SEE: “Bogie Yaalon’s Excellent Adventure with Feiglin, Kahane Kids” , by Richard Silverstein, Tikun Olam, 8/07/09
    LINK – link to richardsilverstein.com

    * Bibi’s “butt boi”!

  4. chauncey
    October 13, 2012, 2:40 am

    This goes beyond donorship. These people are Falic symbols for Israel.

  5. traintosiberia
    October 13, 2012, 8:36 am

    “On January 25, 1995, Bill Clinton issued Executive Order 12947: Prohibiting Transactions With Terrorists Who Threaten To Disrupt the Middle East Peace Process.” link to counterpunch.org

    Settlers are illegal occupant and settlements are illegal activities and it threatens the peace process.
    How many of these are still out there scuttling the peace process and violating US laws openly while Justice Dept maintains unfathomable silence from the crimes?

  6. American
    October 13, 2012, 10:34 am

    Two friends, one who use to be a WS trader and the other who worked in the Senate for a number of years have both been telling me the same thing for years…..that the corruption in the financial sector and in politics will ultimately fatally crash the US. That the ‘systems’ can’t hold up under the corruption because it undermines all the “fundamentals” of necessary balance….and the public will have no warning, it will just collapse. I tend to somewhat believe it.

  7. seanmcbride
    October 13, 2012, 10:53 am

    After it was announced yesterday that Israeli elections will take place this January, Haaretz revisited Benjamin Netanyahu’s campaign contributions and found a staggering 96.8% of the prime minister’s support came from foreign donors. And of these donations, over half came from one American family — the Falic family of Miami, Florida.

    !!!!!

    Am I the only one here who is blown away by the above two sentences? Can they possibly be true?

    If they are true, Israel is the most bizarre and abnormal nation in the world. Does the head of state of any other nation in the world receive more than 95% of his or her political contributions from foreign donors — and over half of those donations from a single family?

    What does this state of affairs say about the essential character and nature of Zionism?

    Why haven’t the American mainstream media been discussing the Falic family for years now since they play such an extraordinarily important role in Israeli, Mideast and American politics?

    Where are the political donations of Israeli billionaires and millionaires in this mix?

    Can this story possibly be true?

    Looking at the original Haaretz article:

    More than half of the contributions to politicians in the past two years – 53 percent of the NIS 13 million – came from people who live overseas, cannot vote in Israel and are not directly impacted by the elected officials’ decisions, Haaretz has found.

    I don’t understand the connection between the 96.8% and 53% figures. (I don’t have access to the full article.)

    • seanmcbride
      October 13, 2012, 11:20 am

      Ok, I get it: 96.8% of political donations to Netanyahu come from foreign sources. 53% of political contributions to all Israeli politicians come from foreign sources.

      Is Israel a real country at all? Particularly when one takes into account that it has been artificially propped up by the remarkable generosity of Americans? Remove all that foreign money, and Israel would probably collapse very quickly.

  8. Gus
    October 13, 2012, 1:59 pm

    This can’t be true. Netanyahu’s domestic numbers are too good for these numbers to be believable.

  9. Ellen
    October 13, 2012, 7:53 pm

    This is an aside, but related

    link to reporting.sunlightfoundation.com

    Interesting the sunlight foundation is exposing pro Israeli activists setting up pacs against the Obama re-election.

    Message to US politicians: foreign funded super pacs can work against any campaign and will.

  10. Shawshank
    October 15, 2012, 10:47 am

    Talk about a Falic symbol.

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