|Abbas’ Rewards for Terror scheme, chiefly and lavishly funded by the United States and the European Union, is said to hold a “sacred” position in today’s Palestinian Arab public opinion. Time that changed. [Image Source: AP]|
Money has always played an under-appreciated enabling role in the rise and spread of Islamist terrorism, even as those doing the actual channeling to the terrorists have doggedly denied the connection.
Channeled is the right word because the actual money for this sort of funding is never coming from the facilitators’ pockets. It always originates with ordinary, unwitting taxpayers. Those doing the allocating and delivering are invariably paid functionaries in a publicly-funded European, Australia or North American government office.
This is infuriating. We have been writing about it since before we started our blog. See for instance this June 2004 contribution by Arnold Roth to the website of EU Funding (mission: “An Independent Look at the Role of European Funding in the Middle East“) in which he addresses the British political figure who headed the EU’s foreign ministry at the time, Christopher Patten [for background, see our post “9-Sep-13: Snouts and troughs“].
A news article had appeared earlier that day, providing what Roth called:
the clearest possible indication that Arafat and his regime have at all relevant times funded the Palestinian Arab militants. Not to mince words about it, this – for those who actually need such things – is “the smoking gun”. It connects the PA to terrorism, and by extension, implicates the European Commission which has continued to shovel vast amounts of money into the very same PA pipeline against reams of evidence that to do so is to fund murder. Depending on how one looks at it, today’s story is either a revelation, or a very, very good reason for you and your staff to pick up the phone and make some urgent calls.
|Brussels, May 2001: Patten in the company of Yasser Arafat,
Romano Prodi and Nabil Shaath [Image Source]
Naturally Christopher Patten (honored these days to be called Baron Patten of Barnes) never made that call. Nor was he moved by an op-ed in Wall Street Journal that had appeared in September 2003 under the title “Blood, Money and Education“, also written by Arnold Roth. (It’s behind a WSJ paywall. Another version is archived here.) Or by an open letter delivered to Patten that same month and published here.
Having lost a dearly-loved child to the satanic work of Hamas, and then watching in horror as the ring-leader of the plot that took her life and the lives of fifteen other innocents walked free with a phenomenally fat pension made possible by US and European funding of the unspeakable Palestinian Authority, we more than most understand the extent of the evil that aggressively imbecilic management of so-called foreign aid funds can wreak on the lives of innocent people.
So no one should be surprised that we are delighting to learn today of new developments in the US government that, if carried through, will significantly reduce the evil, the imbecility and the lethal amorality exemplified by the Christopher Pattens of international relations and governance.
An Adam Kredo report in Washington Free Beacon yesterday says legislators in the House and Senate of the US Congress met yesterday (Tuesday) to introduce legislation
that would cut all U.S. funding to the Palestinian government, which has been criticized for providing financial incentives to terrorists who kill American and Israeli civilians. The White House signaled its support for the legislation in a vast departure from the Obama administration, which worked against similar efforts when in power… “The Palestinian Authority’s use of its resources to provide material support for terrorism—indiscriminately targeted at American and Israeli civilians—is a grotesque example of how well-intentioned U.S. generosity can be turned against us,” a senior White House official told the Free Beacon… “This legislation highlights practical steps the PA can take to demonstrate a real commitment to ending the vicious cycle of hatred and violence that has prevented the Palestinian people from the prosperity and security they could otherwise be enjoying,” the official said… [WFB, February 28, 2017]
The effort is led by Republicans: Roy Blunt, Lindsey Graham and Tom Cotton in the Senate; Doug Lamborn and Lee Zeldin in the House of Representatives. A , R-N.Y., are carrying the companion legislation in the House. A CBS News report added that it is cosponsored in the Senate by Tim Scott, R-South Carolina, Marco Rubio, R-Florida, John Boozman, R-Arkansas, Ted Cruz, R-Texas, Richard Burr, R-North Carolina and John Thune, R-South Dakota.
The Washington Examiner said yesterday that
only Republican lawmakers attended the press conference…
Kredo, quoting that unnamed White House official, writes that the new law seeks
to tighten the financial noose on the Palestinian government and force it to abandon its practice of paying terrorists, is a first step to reforming the notoriously corrupt government, the official said. “The new legislative effort… cuts off all U.S. aid to the Palestinians as a direct response to its longstanding policy of paying salaries to terrorists and supporting those imprisoned for terrorist attacks” “…We shouldn’t allow killers and ruthless attackers to become recognized as martyrs in a system that we’re part of,” Blunt added… “Most Americans have no idea this is a problem,” Graham said. “Not only are Israelis victims of this practice, Americans are victims of this practice. We’re going to change this. We’re going to get the Palestinian Authority’s attention by withholding their money.”
|And did we mention that not one Democrat attended the Congressional
press conference yesterday? Strange given how involved they have
been in continuing the flow of cash [Image Source]
It’s a scheme we have for years termed “Rewards for Terror“.
Sen. Ted Cruz (R., Texas), who has long backed similar efforts, told the Free Beacon it is long past due for Congress to take the lead on this effort now that Obama administration officials can no longer lead efforts to block it. “After eight years of the Obama administration, the U.S. must take long overdue action to hold the Palestinian leadership accountable for incentivizing and rewarding acts of terrorism,” Cruz told the Free Beacon. “Roughly $300 million annually is provided in monthly salaries and benefits to terrorists jailed in Israel, their families, and the families of those who died committing such horrific atrocities against Israeli and American citizens, including Taylor Force [we wrote about what was done to him here.] Enough is enough. We must stand up for victims of Palestinian terrorism. No more U.S. taxpayer dollars should be provided until the Palestinian leadership stops engaging in this heinous practice. The incitement and glorification of terrorism must end.” [“Trump Admin, Congress Behind Effort to Cut U.S. Aid to Palestinians“, Washington Free Beacon, February 28, 2017]
a broader reassessment of American aid to the Palestinian government… [since] the Palestinian government has used U.S. and other foreign taxpayers’ money to pay generous rewards to the families of terrorists. The deadlier the crime, the larger the prize, up to about $3,100 a month, or several times the average salary of a worker in Palestine’s non-terrorist economy… No U.S. official can plead ignorance. Palestinian law has sanctioned these payments since at least 2004, specifying how much money is earned depending on the circumstances of the attacker and the body count. [WSJ, August 11, 2016]
Over the past 10 years, Washington has provided more than $4 billion in foreign aid to the Palestinian Authority. The goal has been to promote a government in the Palestinian territories capable of assuming the responsibilities of a sovereign state, including the recognition of the state of Israel as a legitimate member of the community of nations. The aid has focused principally on security and criminal-justice programs, U.S. Agency for International Development sponsored assistance for schools, health clinics, water and economic development, and generalized support for the Palestinian Authority’s budget. But unlike the many nongovernmental organizations that contribute charitable funds to the region, American assistance programs, while obliged to vet how the money is spent, have yet to ensure effectively that taxpayer dollars are not diverted to support acts of terror… [“Stop American Aid to the Palestinians Until the Terror Ceases”, David Aufhauser and Sander Gerber in the Wall Street Journal, January 27, 2017]