Fact Check: Israel Is NOT Commandeering The Three Seas Initiative In East-European Power Grab


  • szerzõ: Lead Stories
Fact Check: Israel Is NOT Commandeering The Three Seas Initiative In East-European Power Grab Not Involved

Is Israel commandeering the Three Seas Initiative (3SI), a bloc of 12 countries in central and eastern Europe, in an effort to seize political control over the region? No, that's not true: 3SI was spearheaded by the presidents of Poland and Croatia to spur infrastructure development in the area between the Adriatic, Balkan, and Black Seas. There is no evidence that Israel has infiltrated the organization in order to usurp power in Europe's east.

The claim appeared in a Hungarian-language video (archived here) on TikTok on October 29, 2023. It shows an article published on the ultranationalist website Magyar Megmaradásért (For Hungarian Survival) on December 26, 2019, under the headline "An Israeli Empire Stretching Out Between Three Seas." The article compares 3SI to the Cordon Sanitaire, an informal association of countries that sought to isolate the Soviet Union from the rest of Europe after World War I, and reads:

There is no question that this entire region will be led by Israel, which has moved here, with help from the scumbag leaders of scumbag peoples...The construction of the Cordon Sanitaire, which stretches out between 3 seas, was implemented under the Obama administration and will be effectuated by the Trump administration, and Israel will control it from the background! The goal is for the Cordon Sanitaire countries to be ruled by Israel after they are settled by Israeli citizens!!!

(All translations by Lead Stories.)

This is what the post looked like on TikTok at the time of writing:

israel three seas.jpg

(Source: TikTok screenshot taken on Fri Nov 10 11:37:46 2023 UTC)

3SI was conceived in 2015 by former Croatian President Kolinda Grabar-Kitarović and her Polish counterpart, Andrzej Duda. It seeks to boost investment in the energy, transportation, and digital-technology sectors of formerly communist states in Eastern Europe in hopes of closing the economic gap with the West, according to the organization's website. At the time of writing, its members were Estonia, Latvia, Lithuania, Poland, the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Hungary, Slovenia, Croatia, Romania, Bulgaria and Austria.

3SI's finance vehicle, the Three Seas Initiative Investment Fund (3SIIF), was registered in Luxembourg in 2019 by Bank Gospodarstwa Krajowego, a development institution wholly owned by the Polish government, and Romania's EximBank (now known as Exim Banca Românească), in which the country's Finance Ministry holds a 95 percent stake. There is no evidence of Israeli involvement in either bank. Nor is there any evidence that Israelis control 3SIIF's investment adviser, the London-based Amber Infrastructure Group.

The claim accurately states that the United States has supported 3SI from the outset. According to 3SI's website, Grabar-Kitarović and Duda were inspired to establish 3SI after reading a 2014 study titled "Completing Europe - From the North-South Corridor to Energy, Transportation, and Telecommunications Union," co-authored by former U.S. National Security Adviser James L. Jones. In 2022, a U.S. State Department official said Washington was "excited about the opportunities" that 3SI might offer U.S. energy companies as Europe weans itself off Russian fuel supplies.

However, there is nothing that points to Israeli involvement. The Dubrovnik Statement, the joint declaration that 3SI's members issued at their first summit in 2016, does not mention Israel. A Google search for the keywords "Israel" and "Three Seas Initiative" conducted on November 10, 2023, (archived here) turned up no links showing any connection between 3SI and the Jewish state.

Claims that Israel is plotting to seize power in eastern Europe have proliferated on Hungarian-language TikTok accounts since the Gaza-Israel conflict broke out on October 6, 2023. Examples of Lead Stories' fact-checks on such claims can be found here, here, and here.


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