| Beginnings: Incorporated
in New York City in 1982 as a "charitable, tax-exempt
Ideology: Dedicated to transforming "the center
of Hebron into a Jewish city."
Noted For: Moving Jewish settlers into the Palestinian
city of Hebron, one of the hot spots in the Jewish-Palestinian
struggle. Hebron has been the site of some of the worst
violence in the West Bank.
Key Leaders: Irving Feigenblum, David Seidermann,
Jerry Platt, Judy Grossman (the fundraising director whose
salary is over $100,000 a year)
Money from Moskowitz's Bingo: $754,300 between 1991
Hebron is a Palestinian city located in the middle of the
West Bank with a population of over 160,000. Most settlers
live in an exclusive Jewish suburb of Hebron called Kiryat
Arba while a small number - about 500 - live among the Arab
majority. The settlers are infamous for their radical ideology
and violence against Arabs.
In 1996 an on-duty Israeli soldier, Noam Friedman, went
on a shooting spree in the Hebron central market; he wounded
eight Palestinians. In an interview with Israeli television,
an unapologetic Friedman said that all Palestinians, women
and children included, are "not innocent. They hate
the Jews." In 1994 another Hebron settler, an extremist
from New York, Baruch Goldstein, killed Arab worshippers
and wounded 125 as they prayed at the Ibrahimi mosque in
the "Tomb of the Patriarchs" in Hebron. The Hebron
settlers hailed Goldstein as a hero.
The Hebron Fund leadership seeks to create conflicts with
Arabs by staging marches and other events such as the 1995
Pessah (Passover) trips sponsored by the Hebron settlers
to various Jewish sites. They also held a cornerstone laying
ceremony for a new apartment building at the settlement.
Peace Now tried to stop the controversial events, but Hebron
went ahead, according to a 1995 Jerusalem Post article.
In 2000, Hebron Fund president David Siedermann wrote an
open letter to Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Barak in which
he contested the Oslo Accords and called Israel "G-d
given land" and called Arabs "enemies."
A 1997 Salon.com article described the Hebron Fund as "a
New York foundation that raises money for the ultra-nationalist
Jewish settlers in the West Bank city of Hebron. The settlers'
presence in the overwhelmingly Palestinian city has caused
constant friction and unrest, the latest example of which
occurred a few months ago when a settler put up posters
in the town depicting the prophet Mohammed as a pig."
An article by Margot Patterson
in National Catholic Reporter described the tension and
violence that exists in Hebron: "If the settlers attack
me and I respond back, I will either be shot dead, shot
wounded or arrested. But if it's a settler who attacks a
Palestinian, he will be protected by the soldiers at least
and many times by the police," said Muhtaseb, a Palestinian
In Patterson's article, resident and spokeswoman for the
municipality Rachel Klein states: "We shouldn't give
up one inch of Israel, whether this will bring war or not.
We're in the middle of a war because the Arabs are trying
to take over bit by bit the whole of Israel."
Read articles about Hebron Fund:
Peace Now wants Hebron events
Hebron protocol consolidates
The Ideology Behind Hebron