Honenu, an organization that provides legal services to extreme-right terrorists and violent settlers, and which gives financial support to their families, receives tax-deductible donations recognized by both Israel and US tax authorities.
Calling itself an “Israeli Zionist legal aid organization,” Honenu is based in Kiryat Arba, a Jewish settlement of 7,500 encroaching on and regularly disrupting life for the 250,000 Palestinians residents of Hebron. The organization has tasked itself with a clear vision: to come to the aid of “soldiers and civilians who find themselves in legal entanglements as a result of their defending themselves against Arab aggression, or due to their love for Israel.” In Honenu’s eyes, they are defending “noble citizens” who have “acted on behalf of Am Yisrael [the People of Israel].”
Among the Jewish terrorists the organization has raised funds for are: Yigal Amir, the assassin of Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, whose wife also has enjoyed financial support from the group; Yaakov Teitel, who murdered two Palestinians in 1997 and attempted to kill two Israelis with explosive devices in 2008, whom they provided with legal representation during his trial; Ami Popper, convicted of the murder of seven Palestinians workers in 1990; members of the Bat Ayin Underground, who were convicted of attempting to blow up a Palestinian girls’ school in Jerusalem in 2002; the three Israeli suspects in the 2014 murder of the teenager Mohammed Abu Khdeir; and one of the members of the terrorist group Lehava indicted for arson at the Jewish-Arab Hand in Hand school in Jerusalem last year. Currently, Honenu attorney Itamar Ben-Gvir is also representing Yinon Reuveni, the main defendant in the case of the torching of the Church of the Multiplication in the Galilee this year.
According to a recent report televised by Israel’s Channel 10, donations to Honenu from within Israel are tax-deductible, meaning that the organization is de facto subsidized by the government. Similarly, donations from the US are funneled via a charity that has tax-deductible status there, meaning that the organization also benefits from American taxpayers’ money.
Honenu’s work goes far beyond legal support. As was revealed in the Channel 10 report, providing financial support to convicts and their families forms a significant part of the organization’s mandate. According to the report, Honenu has provided financial support to, among others, the families of Ami Popper and the Bat Ayin Underground members.