Organization Trends

The Anti-American Left: Alliance for Global Justice

The Anti-American Left (full series)
Communophilism | IPS and the National Lawyers Guild
Democratic Socialists of America | Alliance for Global Justice
The War on Terror and Code Pink | Russian Invasion of Ukraine

Alliance for Global Justice

All told, the Alliance for Global Justice is among the most radically leftist nonprofits in the United States. Its overarching goal is to challenge “the economic and foreign policies of our government and corporations” through four primary areas of “struggle for liberation from Empire”:

  1. Opposition to free-market capitalism,
  2. Opposition to American “militarism,”
  3. Opposition to “US democracy manipulation efforts” in foreign countries, and
  4. Opposition to the “consumptive excess of wealthy nations and their constant search for new resources to exploit.”

A 501(c)(3) nonprofit that itself administers dozens of separate projects, the Alliance’s revenues exploded from under $7 million in 2020 to over $56 million in 2021. The jump was largely driven by its sponsorship of the Movement for Black Lives (which has since been transferred to the Common Counsel Foundation) and several other groups associated with the Black Lives Matter movement. As the self-described “accounting department for the movement for social change,” the alliance exercises considerable influence across the anti-American Left.

It also embodies some of its most virulent radicalism. The alliance has posted material calling the United States “the most significant threat to peace in this world,” and until recently, it listed the rejection of “the myth of US exceptionalism” as one of its core principles. It has committed itself to “revolutionary change” in America’s government, calling it “the best gift we could possibly offer . . . the world.” The alliance has also not been shy about proclaiming its hostility toward the “sham” of Western-style liberal democracy, which it dismisses as “the governing principle of the US/NATO Empire, which serves global capitalism.” Like much of the rest of the anti-American Left, the alliance favors the various forms of left-wing authoritarianism practiced in places like Cuba, Venezuela, and Nicaragua.

Indeed, it has always been closely linked to Nicaragua. The alliance’s roots date back to the formation of a group called the Nicaragua Network in 1979, established by American activists in order to support the far-left Sandinistas, who reportedly asked the Americans to help them by changing their own government.

That support continues today. After Sandinista strongman Daniel Ortega pulled virtually every trick in the autocratic playbook to secure for himself a fourth consecutive term as the country’s president in 2021—via elections that were described as a “pantomime” by the United States—the alliance celebrated Nicaragua’s “firm commitment to democracy” and published material declaring complete confidence in the electoral results and reminding readers that “every victory against U.S. authoritarianism is significant.”

One main activity of the Alliance for Global Justice is fiscal sponsorship—an arrangement through which it houses “project” groups that have not been granted their own 501(c)(3) tax-exempt status from the IRS. For an 8 percent fee, the alliance provides a variety of administrative services to its projects and accepts tax-deductible donations on their behalf. Sponsored projects must subscribe to the alliance’s vision and mission statement and be approved by its board of directors. As of January 2023, it claims to sponsor over 90 different projects, a number of which are deeply hostile to the United States.

One such project, the United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC) asserts categorically that “the U.S. government, and the corporations it serves, are the major cause of conflict and misery in the world today.” At the same time, it serves as a virtual apologist for the governments of North Korea, Cuba, Syria, Russia, Venezuela, and Iran—a rogues gallery of state violence and repression. The UNAC has even equivocated on international terrorism. In a statement entitled “We are NOT Charlie Hebdo!” it criticized the innocent victims of the eponymous 2015 terrorist attack in Paris for “their racist, chauvinist and hateful Islamophobic caricatures of oppressed people.” The UNAC also blamed the United States government for bringing about what it called the “unfortunate” 2012 killing of U.S. Ambassador J. Christopher Stevens in Benghazi and accused President Barack Obama of exploiting the “murder” of Osama bin Laden to “re-legitimize U.S. militarism” and bolster his own re-election prospects.

Another alliance project, the Venceremos Brigade, organizes annual trips to Cuba for American activists who wish to demonstrate their solidarity with the country. The first iterations of the Venceremos Brigade were organized in 1969 by radical activists who included members of Students for a Democratic Society (SDS), the Black Panther Party, the Communist Party, and others. Individuals associated with the Institute for Policy Studies (IPS), including the notably pro-Castro IPS fellow Saul Landau, were also involved with early trips. Thousands of brigadistas have participated since the 1960s, and today the brigade’s “Points of Unity” include an affirmation that “the imperialist policies of the US government which constrain Cuban development and seek to overthrow socialism in Cuba are the foreign arms of a system which at home dehumanizes, criminalizes, exploits, and punishes with impunity masses of oppressed people.”

Other Alliance projects include Refuse Fascism, which was formed in 2016 by various leftists including members of the Revolutionary Communist Party after they supposedly recognized “the fascist character and danger of the looming Trump/Pence Regime.” The mission of the Alliance’s World Can’t Wait project is to “stand up and stop war on the world, repression and torture carried out by the US government.” The alliance also fiscally sponsors the International People’s Tribunal on U.S. Imperialism, which intends to hold “hearings” in 2023 to “challenge the economic atrocities committed by the United States through the use of the law.” The tribunal will apparently hear “evidence” against America from witnesses claiming to represent the interests of Cuba, Iran, Nicaragua, North Korea, Syria,  Venezuela, and other countries, with the primary purpose of denouncing “imperialist sanctions” against those governments.

All of this—which is a mere sampling—makes the fact that the Alliance for Global Justice receives substantial philanthropic funding rather remarkable. Tax returns posted on its website reveal that between April 1, 2020, and March 31, 2021, the alliance received nearly $6 million from the Tides Center, over $2 million from the affiliated Tides Foundation, $3 million from the National Philanthropic Trust, $2 million from the JPB Foundation, $500,000 from the Kolibri Foundation, $500,000 from the Clara Lionel Foundation, $450,000 from the Marguerite Casey Foundation, and $450,000 from the Women Donors Network, alongside smaller six-figure contributions from the New Venture Fund, the Planned Parenthood Federation of America, the Robert Sterling Clark Foundation, the Park Foundation, the Colorado Health Foundation, the Wallace Global Fund, the Raikes Foundation, NEO Philanthropy, the Greater Houston Community Foundation, and others.

Some of these funders (such as Tides) have funneled substantial sums to the alliance in the past as well. In recent years significant grant money has come from donor-advised fund providers such as the Amalgamated Charitable Foundation and the American Online Giving Foundation. George Soros’s Foundation to Promote Open Society gave $250,000 in 2020, while Peter Buffett’s NoVo Foundation provided a total of $275,000 from 2018 to 2019. The Alliance has also received funding from the Proteus Fund ($247,500 from 2017 to 2019), the Wellspring Philanthropic Fund ($500,000 from 2018 to 2019), the New World Foundation ($367,000 from 2015 to 2018), the New York Women’s Foundation ($310,000 from 2018 to 2020), and Borealis Philanthropy ($748,700 from 2017 to 2020).

It is not always possible to determine whether a particular grant was made to support the Alliance for Global Justice itself or was earmarked for one of its fiscally sponsored projects. That said, because the alliance accepts projects only if they subscribe to its mission and because that mission is distinctly hostile to the United States and its international influence, any funding routed to or through the alliance may properly be considered direct financial support for the anti-American Left.

In the next installment, the War on Terror brought ANSWER and Code Pink to national prominence.

Robert Stilson

Robert runs several of CRC’s specialized projects. Originally from Indiana, he has a B.A. from Hanover College and a J.D. from University of Richmond School of Law, where he graduated…
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