Visitors to the People’s Forum in New York City can attend a seminar on Karl Marx, learn about Vladimir Lenin and “the path to revolution,” or help activists organize anti-Israel protests. It’s all made possible by a $12 million donation from Goldman Sachs’s charitable arm.
The People’s Forum was the single largest recipient of aid from the Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund in 2019, tax filings show. The group received more than the American Friends of Cancer Research, Salvation Army, and Hamilton College—Goldman Sachs chief executive officer David Solomon’s alma mater—combined.
The eye-popping donation helped the People’s Forum move to the forefront of far-left politics in New York. With an on-site cafe offering subsidized paninis and a fully-stocked library named after a Cuban revolutionary, the People’s Forum, according to its website, “nurtures the next generation of visionaries and organizers.”
The group has helped organize anti-Israel protests since Hamas’s Oct. 7 attack that left 1,200 Israelis and at least 32 Americans dead. From its luxurious retail space in New York’s ritzy Hudson Yards, the city’s most expensive neighborhood, the self-described Marxist group helped organize the now-infamous Times Square protests on Oct. 8. Republicans and Democrats alike denounced the protests as anti-Semitic.
Now, the People’s Forum is threatening to “shut down” New York on Nov. 24 in an effort to demand a ceasefire.
“Are you ready to disrupt business as usual? No celebrating in peace while genocide takes place!” The People’s Forum posted on X, the website formally known as Twitter. “This Black Friday, 11/24, we will boycott, disrupt, and rally at commercial centers to #ShutItDown4Palestine.”
The Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund, which did not respond to a request for comment, manages around $8 billion in charitable funds for its parent company’s clients. It’s an odd match: the world’s premier investment bank facilitating the transfer of millions of dollars to a far-left “incubator for working class and marginalized communities” that hosts Communist Manifesto readings.
The source of the Goldman Sachs Philanthropy Fund’s donations to the People’s Forum is likely Neville Roy Singham, a communist with a nine-figure tech fortune. Singham has given at least $20.4 million to the People’s Forum from 2017 to 2022 and is the single individual responsible for the group’s operations, the Free Press reported.
Singham does not hide from his infatuation with Marxism and authoritarians who govern in its name. A man who has “long admired Maoism,” and lives in China, Singham works with the Chinese Communist Party to finance “its propaganda worldwide,” according to the New York Times.
Singham was spotted at a Chinese Communist Party propaganda forum in July brandishing a hammer-and-sickle notebook. Records show he has donated hundreds of millions of dollars to organizations that parrot Beijing’s anti-Western talking points.
Singham’s pro-China philanthropic empire is largely guided by his wife, former Democratic operative Jodie Evans. As leader of the far-left activist group Code Pink, Evans has steered the organization’s message towards lionizing China as “a defender of the oppressed and a model for economic growth without slavery or war.”
Code Pink protested the offices of Rep. Seth Moulton (D., Mass.) in June over his criticism of the Chinese Communist Party’s treatment of the minority Muslim Uyghur people. Evans has justified China’s treatment of the Uyghur people, which includes forced labor and imprisonment, as antiterrorism measures.
Asked in June whether she had a single criticism for the Chinese Communist Party’s regime, Evans replied, “I can’t, for the life of me, think of anything.” She later said her only complaint was that Chinese merchants “don’t take American credit cards.”
The People’s Forum’s headquarters is also home to 1804 Books, a far-left publisher whose books include selected essays from former Vietnamese leader Ho Chi Minh and speeches by African dictators. The publishing house is also a leader in the movement to free Walid Daqqah, a terrorist serving time in an Israeli prison for his role in the 1984 kidnapping and murder of an Israeli Defense Force soldier. In June 1804 Books heralded Daqqah as “a revolutionary writer and thinker.”
“We demand the immediate release of Walid Daqqah to his family and immediate access to medical care,” the publisher wrote in an open letter. “We raise our voices in firm solidarity with Walid Daqqah, the almost 5,000 Palestinian prisoners who remain unjustly behind bars, and the imprisoned and repressed voices of reason who suffer the attacks of imperialism across the world.”