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ADVOCACY PROJECT (AP) Printer Friendly Page

Advocacy Project and Grassroots International
By NGO Monitor
February 11, 2003

 


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1326 14th Street NW
Washington, DC
20005
Phone :202-332-3900
Email :
dcoffice@advocacynet.org
URL: Website
Advocacy Project (AP)'s Visual Map


  • Washington, DC-based NGO with anti-Israel ideological emphasis
  • Identifies its chief concerns as social justice, peace, and human rights
 

A 501(c)(3) public charity, the Advocacy Project (AP) describes itself as "a non-profit organization, based in Washington DC, created in 1998 to help advocates who are working on the front lines for social justice, peace and human rights." AP gives “special attention to helping NGOs and networks become self-sufficient in the use of information and communications technologies.” For its first two years, the Advocacy Project was a "virtual" organization, with its members working solely through email.

AP’s directors are professionals with experience in international NGOs and governmental organizations. Kevin Murray, for example, worked with Oxfam America before becoming Executive Director of Grassroots International (GRI). Jock Covey served on the Middle East desk in the U.S. State Department and as deputy High Representative in Bosnia with the United Nations. Lucy Nusseibeh founded and directs the Middle East Center for Non Violence and Democracy. 

The Advocacy Project forms what it calls “partnerships” with organizations whose objectives are compatible with its own. AP identifies these as groups that are:
  • working in a country that is recovering from war or gross human rights violations
  • working for human rights or social justice
  • strongly recommended by a respected NGO, donor or friend of the Advocacy Project
  • advocating an issue of universal significance

The newsletter “AdvocacyNet” is the flagship product of the Advocacy Project. Sent bi-monthly to e-mail subscribers, it highlights the campaigns and projects of AP and its partners. Back issues of the newsletter are archived here. In addition, AP issues press releases with topical or urgent partner news to its e-mail subscribers on an occasional basis.

Below is a list of programs that the Advocacy Project administers, followed by AP’s descriptions of each:

(a) Information Capacity Building: “We support our partners in over 5 continents [and help] them exploit and use information in a way that empowers their members and strengthens their organizations.”
(b) Internship: “Our ‘interns without borders’ program sends graduate students to work with partners [to places like] Sri Lanka, Nepal, Afghanistan, Kosovo, Bosnia, Nigeria, Italy, Guatemala, Ecuador, the Czech Republic, Lebanon, Israel and the Palestinian territories, and Brazil.”
(c) Dissemination: “AP disseminated information about our 20 plus partners through an online news service that comprises a website, newsletter and press releases.”
(d) Outreach and Promotion: “AP's outreach and promotional program organizes events and online campaigns, creates support group for individual partners, produces promotional material, and arranges forums for speaking events.”
(e) Networking: “AP works as a designated representative of its partners in steering information to national and Western governments, the UN, International Monetary institutions, and Diaspora communities.”
(f) Fundraising: “By disseminating information about our partners, AP generates resources about our partners even though we so not raise funds directly for partners.”

Notwithstanding its apolitical self-description, the Advocacy Project has an anti-Israel ideological emphasis and a strong political agenda that is reflected in its reports. Articles on the AP website frequently distort facts and draw a moral equivalence between Palestinian terrorism and Israeli counter-terror measures, and include accusations that Israel practices "apartheid" and "racism." One recent report, for example, said that nothing AP had seen “in Bosnia, Kosovo, Cambodia, and Guatemala… prepared us for what we saw in Palestine.”

Another article published on AP's website reveals even more of the organization’s political agenda. It reads, in part: “But from the first day of this uprising, when Israelis killed four unarmed Palestinian protesters, the Israeli response has been completely disproportionate to whatever threat exists. The strategy of closure -- cutting off Palestinian communities -- is by definition indiscriminate. It is a vengeful act, aimed at crushing the spirit of the Palestinian people. It is also guaranteed to provoke desperate acts of retaliation. If there is terrorism, it certainly comes from both sides.”

The AP website makes use of references and quotes from known anti-Israel academics, describing 'Bantusian areas', with no attempt to balance these claims or place them in their political and ideological perspective.While AP does condemn Palestinian suicide bombings, it places them on the same moral plane as Israel's military protection of its civilian population.

To AP’s credit, it sharply criticizes the Palestinian Authority for its corruption. In one article, it states:  “Community and non-governmental organizations in Palestine face a Herculean task -- to build a civil and democratic society within a population that is on the one hand besieged by an occupier and on the other governed by a regime that is authoritarian and often corrupt.” AP does not, however, attribute the Palestinians’ humanitarian suffering and terrorism to this "authoritarian and often corrupt” regime. Instead the Advocacy Project and likeminded NGOs prefer to talk of “Bantustanization” and an “unending occupation.” 

Major funders of the Advocacy Project include Amnesty International, the Coalition for an International Criminal Court, the International Coalition of Voluntary Agencies, the Ministry of Development Cooperation of the Dutch Government, and UNICEF. In addition, the Advocacy Project is sponsored by a number of private funds, including the Arigatou Foundation, and the John D. and Catherine T. MacArthur Foundation. From 2001 through 2003, AP took in just over $726,000, with a high of $265,140 in 2003

AP is a member of OneWorld Network, an umbrella organization of more than 1,500 leftwing groups that, according to the OneWorld website, seek "to promote sustainable development, social justice, and human rights."


This profile is adapted, with permission, from the NGO Monitor.

 

 

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