UKLFI: Supporting Israel with legal skills

Open Collective suspends Palestine Action donation page

Open Collective, a fundraising platform, has suspended Palestine Action’s donations page.

Palestine Action’s potential donors had been directed to donate via Open Collective, after another donation platform, GoFundMe,  stopped Palestine Action from withdrawing further funds at the end of October.

A notice on Palestine Action’s Facebook page on 2 November said “GoFundMe are withholding monies given by you to Palestine Action; so help us #ShutElbitDown by donating instead to”(the Open Collective page).   However, if potential donors follow the link to Open Collective they are faced with a message saying “This collective is not active and can’t accept financial contributions”.

UK Lawyers for Israel (UKLFI) pointed out to both Open Collective and to GoFundMe that Palestine Action was raising money to assist criminal activity, which may have resulted in these fundraising platforms suspending Palestine Action’s accounts.

Palestine Action boasts openly about its illegal activities on Facebook. For example:

  • On 19 October 2020 at 19:56 , a video was posted shortly after several members of Palestine Action were charged with criminal offences and released on bail conditions which include not going near premises of the company Elbit. The speaker says:

“The law has been shown to be an ass, right, and it is our sacred duty now and right to carry on and break the law because it is a load of bollocks. OK we can’t protest, we can’t go there, well they’re not going to stop us. It doesn’t matter what they do, it is your right and your duty to get out there and, like Huda said, throw paint on them, smash their batteries, go there, continue to cause damage, until Elbit Systems fuck off and leave this country. And the Police only serve to protect war criminals. They are not our friends. They are not upholding any rightful law. So we disobey the Police. We disobey anyone who tells us what we should or shouldn’t do.”

  • A post at 12:37 the same day states “All activists who occupied and destroyed an Elbit Systems factory pleaded not guilty today”.

  • A post at 11:46 on 2 October states: “Vandalism against arms companies is ok. Vandalism against companies complicit in apartheid should be condoned. Vandalism, when wielded with intent of political action and political conscientization (critical consciousness raising) for the sake of protecting human life, dignity and freedom, most definitely should be supported.”

  • Below that item there is a video showing red paint being sprayed onto the door of one of their targets. Above it they write “Elbit stays / Palestine Action sprays”.

Caroline Turner, director of UKLFI commented: “We are pleased that Open Collective is now reviewing its provision of services to Palestine Action, which not only flaunts its illegal actions, and encourages others to participate in them but also spreads lies and misinformation about Israel.”