February 20, 2019

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News you won’t read in the @NYTimes: Israel investing $560 million in Arab areas of Jerusalem


From Israel Hayom last week:

The Israeli government on Thursday unveiled what it billed as a groundbreaking program to invest hundreds of millions of dollars in long-neglected Palestinian neighborhoods of east Jerusalem.

The “Leading Change” program aims to reduce the huge social gaps between the Arab and Jewish populations in the capital.

Palestinian neighborhoods suffer from poor infrastructure, neglect and subpar public services, and nearly 80% of the city’s Palestinian families live in poverty.

The program will invest 2 billion shekels ($560 million) in three core areas: education, infrastructure, and helping Palestinian women enter the workforce. The funds will be spent on a variety of programs, including nine pilot projects in the coming five years, with the aim of attracting further government and private investment down the road.

Various government ministries, along with the Jerusalem Municipality, will carry out the program, which was launched at a ceremony at President Reuven Rivlin’s official residence on Thursday.

Rivlin praised what he called “the most comprehensive attempt by the government to date to narrow the gaps and to develop the economy” of east Jerusalem, which has experienced “lost generations” over the decades.

Since this is exactly opposite of the worldwide meme of how Israel neglects its Arab population, this story will not be mentioned by the media.

Even Netanyahu’s critics who call him a racist grudgingly admit that he has spent a lot of money helping the economy of the Arab sector in Israel.

However, there is some potential on this story being picked up by the Israel haters, where they will spin it to say that Israel is spending money in order to annex “East” Jerusalem.

Once that message gets out there, then international reporters will find an angle to report on this story while continuing to demonize Israel.

(h/t Yoel)

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