Middle East Forum Education Fund
To help realize its mission, the Middle East Forum established an Education Fund (MEFEF) in early 2008, building on an initiative that began in 2006. MEFEF disburses close to $2 million annually to researchers, writers, moderate Muslims, investigators, and activists whose work focuses on the Middle East and Islam.
MEFEF recipients—from leading Arab reformers and moderate Muslims to independent watchdogs and think tanks—are active in the United States and around the world, including Australia, Austria, Canada, Denmark, France, Germany, Greece, India, Israel, the Netherlands, Poland, the United Kingdom, and the Middle East. Much of their efforts are kept confidential to prevent their being exposed to danger.
The work of MEFEF recipients complements the Forum's two main areas of concern:
Promoting American interests: Funds go to organizations that monitor U.N. actions, fight anti-Israel bias in the media, assess U.S. policy in the region, assess the threat of nuclear proliferation, provide translations from Middle Eastern languages, seek to reform Saudi Arabia, assess school materials' representation of America, and influence attitudes in India.
Combating Islamism: Funds go to organizations that combat Islamist activities, forward moderate Muslim views, assess problems with school materials dealing with Islam and the Middle East, investigate covert Islamists, defend free speech from Islamist reprisals, and combat the indoctrination and deployment of child suicide bombers.
Recent achievements by MEFEF recipients include:
A 32-minute video made by Americans for Peace and Tolerance, exposing rampant anti-Semitism at Northeastern University, has led to the removal of four professors from the university.
NGO Monitor released an extensive report proving that European NGOs leak stories containing demonstrably false information about Israel, such as that only Jews may buy land in Israel. It led to briefings for members of the European Parliament and other European and Israeli officials by Gerald Steinberg, president of NGO Monitor. Its staff also published op-eds on this issue in the Times of Israel, Public Service Europe, and Jewish Chronicle (UK). The EU policies highlighted in this report are also being raised at high-level meetings between Israeli and European officials.
Patrick Poole, whose work serves as a standard reference point for Congressional questioning of Administration officials, briefed several dozen members of Congress and congressional staff in recent months. His expose of Islamist infiltration of U.S. institutions has been the subject of a two-part documentary by The Blaze; his exclusive story on the scuttled prosecution of CAIR co-founder Omar Ahmad is currently the subject of a federal FOIA lawsuit by Judicial Watch; and his report on the FBI shutting down intelligence-sharing with state and local fusion centers prompted a complete reversal of policy.
Daniel Pipes, president of the Middle East Forum, observes that the MEF Education Fund "supports key actors fighting to preserve our civilization and develop a sensible foreign policy."
Two notes: (1) MEFEF donations are initiated internally; applications are not accepted. (2) Funds received for MEFEF are earmarked to distribute to recipients; these monies are independent from Middle East Forum income.