News & Politics

Palestinians Will Have to Make Do With $200 Million Less from U.S. Taxpayers

Russian President Vladimir Putin, right, shakes hands with Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas, during their meeting in the Kremlin in Moscow, Russia, Monday, Feb. 12, 2018. Maxim Shipenkov, Pool Photo via AP)

The Trump administration announced that the U.S. contribution to the Palestinian Authority would be cut by $200 million until they can assure the government that the money will not be used to fund terrorism.

Just recently, Congress passed the Taylor Force Act, which would provide greater oversight of taxpayer funds sent to the PA. There have been accusations that the Palestinians use the funds to carry out terror attacks against Israel.

Washington Free Beacon:

President Donald Trump directed his administration to freeze $200 million in aid dollars allocated to the PA for economic support, according to an announcement by the State Department issued just a short time after lawmakers on Capitol Hill were informed of the move, sources said.

One senior U.S. official familiar with the decision to cut U.S. aid told the Free Beacon the administration will no longer enable the Palestinian Authority and those in the Hamas terrorist government to use aid dollars in their war against Israel.

“Hamas is fighting a morally-bankrupt war at the expense of the Palestinian people,” said the official, who was only authorized to speak on background. “Hamas’s corrupt and illegitimate control has provoked conflict and led to poverty and hopelessness, while hampering the ability of the international community to help.”

The administration’s decision is separate from Congress’ mandate in the Taylor Force Act but designed to work in parallel with it, the source said.

“Regarding why the decision was made, this decision is separate from but consistent with Congress’s purpose in passing the Taylor Force Act, which restricts assistance to the Palestinian Authority unless it ends the abhorrent practice of payments to imprisoned terrorists and the families of terrorists,” the official explained.

For decades, the international community has rewarded the Palestinians for their terror campaign against Israel by funneling billions of dollars into the coffers of the Palestinian Authority. Some might make the argument that the PA is different than Hamas because they favor negotiations with Israel. This doesn’t even pass the smell test. Check out the PA’s idea of “negotiations” and you’ll see why they are calling for the virtual destruction of Israel.

Humanitarian aid? There is evidence that non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are funneling aid meant to relieve the suffering of Palestinian refugees to terrorists. The hold the Palestinian Authority and Hamas have on the people is total. Sadly, many Palestinians have accepted this state of affairs and won’t protest much if the food is taken out of their mouths to fund attacks on Israel.

This announcement by the Trump administration is long past due. The notion that paying the Palestinians will make them more responsible citizens is not borne out by the facts. Unless they can demonstrate a commitment to peace and the safety of Israel, not one dime from the U.S. taxpayer should be sent.