Ter­ror­ists use for­eign aid to fund killing of Is­raelis, Amer­i­cans.

In­no­cent Amer­i­cans and Is­raelis are be­ing mur­dered by fi­nan­cially re­warded ‘mar­tyrs’

The Washington Times Daily - - FRONT PAGE - By Doug Lam­born and Elazar Stern

On July 14, three Arab cit­i­zens of Is­rael en­tered Jerusalem’s Tem­ple Mount armed to at­tack. They shot and killed two Is­raeli po­lice of­fi­cers — Hayil Satawi, 30, and Kamil Dhanaan, 22, mem­bers of the Is­raeli Druze com­mu­nity. The ter­ror­ists were shot and killed. Their fam­i­lies will re­ceive monthly re­ward checks from the Pales­tinian Author­ity for the rest of their lives.

A week later, on July 21, a 19-year-old Pales­tinian ter­ror­ist walked into a Jewish home dur­ing a Shab­bat meal and stabbed three Is­raelis to death: Yosef Salomon, 70, and two of his chil­dren; Chaya Salomon, 46, and Elad Salomon, 36. The Pales­tinian Author­ity will send a monthly check to this ter­ror­ist who will sit in prison for the rest of his life — as com­pen­sa­tion this heinous at­tack.

In March of last year, a 28-year-old Amer­i­can stu­dent named Tay­lor Force was vis­it­ing Is­rael on a school trip. While walk­ing near the beach in Tel Aviv, a 22-year-old Pales­tinian stabbed him to death in a ter­ror at­tack. Tay­lor Force was an Ea­gle Scout, West Point grad­u­ate, and a veteran of both Iraq and Afghanistan. He rep­re­sents ev­ery­thing any par­ent could want their son or daugh­ter to be.

Shortly af­ter his son’s mur­der, Stu­art Force said, “All dads and all moms are proud of their kids. Tay­lor ba­si­cally did ev­ery­thing right, but he was hum­ble about it.” Mr. and Mrs. Force lost their trea­sured son in this ter­ror at­tack. They were left with only pho­to­graphs and mem­o­ries. The ter­ror­ist who mur­dered Tay­lor was killed shortly af­ter by po­lice — but his fam­ily was left with some­thing else, a lu­cra­tive fi­nan­cial re­ward.

The Pales­tinian Author­ity, led by Pres­i­dent Mah­moud Ab­bas, gives

The Pales­tinian Author­ity, led by Pres­i­dent Mah­moud Ab­bas, gives fi­nan­cial re­wards for ter­ror at­tacks. The more peo­ple killed in an at­tack, the higher the fi­nan­cial re­ward.

fi­nan­cial re­wards for ter­ror at­tacks. The more peo­ple killed in an at­tack, the higher the fi­nan­cial re­ward. Fam­i­lies of ter­ror­ists re­ceive a pen­sion for life which is triple the av­er­age salary in the West Bank, free tu­ition and health in­sur­ance, a cloth­ing allowance, and a monthly stipend.

In 2016, the PA paid $135 mil­lion to ter­ror­ists jailed in Is­rael, and $183 mil­lion to fam­i­lies of ter­ror­ists. That adds up to more than $300 mil­lion to re­ward and in­cen­tivize acts of mur­der — in one year alone.

This issue has brought us — mem­bers of the United States and Is­raeli leg­is­la­tures — to­gether, since Pales­tinian ter­ror im­pacts both of our coun­tries. It mat­ters to Is­rael be­cause the Pales­tinian fund­ing in­vites con­stant at­tacks against Is­raelis. It mat­ters to the United States not just be­cause in­no­cent Amer­i­cans and Is­raelis are be­ing mur­dered, but also be­cause in the last 25 years the United States has sent more than $5 bil­lion in for­eign aid to the Pales­tini­ans. This aid is meant to fos­ter sta­bil­ity and pro­mote peace in the re­gion. Yet the Pales­tinian Author­ity is us­ing our aid for the ex­act op­po­site pur­pose. The two of us have de­cided to take action. In the U.S., we are hold­ing the Pales­tinian Author­ity ac­count­able through the Tay­lor Force Act. This leg­is­la­tion would with­hold eco­nomic as­sis­tance to the Pales­tinian Author­ity un­til the PA stops its pay­ments for acts of ter­ror­ism, in­clud­ing re­wards to fam­ily mem­bers of ter­ror­ists.

In the Is­raeli Knes­set, a law has al­ready passed the first stage of the leg­isla­tive process that would im­pose a dol­lar-for-dol­lar de­duc­tion in the amount of tax rev­enues Is­rael trans­fers to the Pales­tinian Author­ity based on the amount the PA pays ter­ror­ists. Is­rael col­lects th­ese funds in ac­cor­dance with pre­vi­ous agree­ments, yet th­ese agree­ments also com­mit the Pales­tinian Author­ity to fight against — not glo­rify — ter­ror. That money to the PA can be trans­ferred as soon as the Pales­tinian Author­ity stops sup­port­ing ter­ror. Hu­man life, on the other hand, can never be re­turned.

Some will ar­gue that money is not fun­gi­ble; that we know ex­actly where our for­eign aid is go­ing; that our money is pro­mot­ing peace and hu­man­i­tar­i­an­ism. But the re­al­ity is that, de­spite our good in­ten­tions, when the U.S. pays for gov­er­nance, util­i­ties, and so­cial wel­fare pro­grams, it is free­ing up P.A. money to pay for ter­ror­ist stipends, such as the stipend go­ing to the rel­a­tives of Tay­lor Force’s mur­derer.

Oth­ers ar­gue that th­ese Amer­i­can and Is­raeli bills could desta­bi­lize the West Bank — but prom­i­nent Is­raeli na­tional se­cu­rity fig­ures re­ject this pre­dic­tion, and the fact re­mains that the sta­tus quo it­self is un­sta­ble. Fund­ing that en­ables the Pales­tinian Author­ity to re­ward vi­o­lence and killing is not a recipe for calm­ness, whereas re­mov­ing an in­cen­tive to carry out acts of ter­ror will be an im­por­tant step to­wards peace and sta­bil­ity. But above all, the rea­son why both coun­tries must pass th­ese bills into law, is that our most ba­sic moral value is the sanc­tity of hu­man life. It is sim­ply un­ac­cept­able to al­low our money to pro­mote mur­der.

While th­ese bills bring us to­gether as leg­is­la­tors in Is­rael and the United States, the en­tire free world should rally to sup­port their pas­sage. All civ­i­lized coun­tries should seek moral and po­lit­i­cal clar­ity to stop the use of aid money go­ing to com­pen­sate acts of ter­ror. Through leg­is­la­tion in the U.S. and Is­rael, we can turn words into action. We urge the rest of the world to join us as we seek to put an end to this hor­rific prac­tice and bring a mea­sure of peace to a re­gion that des­per­ately needs it.

IL­LUS­TRA­TION BY GREG GROESCH

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