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Netanyahu spearheads populist 'madness'

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has changed strategy, and instead of operating behind the scenes he is now spearheading efforts to adopt a law against foreign donations to NGOs.
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Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's decision to task Tourism Minister Yariv Levin with formulating a stricter new version of the "NGO law" simply shows how serious he is about it. Levin is more than just Netanyahu's loyal cohort in the Likud Party and his personal envoy for all sorts of special operations. He has been working hard to ensure the rapid advance of this proposed law, which would completely ban Israeli nongovernmental organizations from receiving donations from foreign governments. Levin is already well-known for his struggle to reduce the power of the Supreme Court, which he sees as a branch of the Israeli left. He is, therefore, the ideal candidate to implement Netanyahu's most recent instructions.

Netanyahu made the announcement June 11, at a meeting of coalition party leaders. He explained that the existing law, which obligates NGOs to reveal their sources of foreign funding, is still too weak, since it only resolves the problem of transparency. Now the prime minister wants to block the flow of money from overseas to those NGOs that he believes are operating against the Israel Defense Forces.

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