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Thursday, May 11, 2006

Aid for the Palestinians Hamastan

Yesterday, I said that I was willing to reserve judgment on the proposal to help the 'Palestinian people' out of their self-imposed financial crisis, because I felt that the US would orchestrate the manner in which aid was given so that it would be temporary, in-kind and not useful to the 'Palestinian Authority.' I take back everything I said.

Last night, I really thought I had called this correctly, despite what other bloggers had said. HaAretz reported that US Ambassador to the UN John Bolton - a hero in my book - said that the U.S. has not yet agreed to the proposed Quartet plan to channel aid to the Palestinians. According to Bolton, the U.S. is waiting for the European Union to complete drafting the proposal, and will decide afterwards.

But it wasn't even the Europeans who caved in this time. It was Israel's leftist, defeatist government. And once the Israeli government caved in, there was nothing anyone else was going to do to keep the 'Palestinians' cut off. After all, if Israel is going to give them aid, why shouldn't the rest of the world.

It began with Foreign Minister Tzippy Livni, a political opportunist who left the Likud with Olmert to get out from under Limor Livnat's shadow as top woman in the Likud (Livni doesn't come up to Livnat's ankles in terms of stature or smarts). Livni told Army Radio
"As far as we are concerned, the Quartet's decision to give further humanitarian support to the Palestinian Authority, bypassing the Hamas government, is definitely okay." At least there was still a figleaf there - bypassing the 'Hamas government.' Later, Livni added Israeli money into the mix, saying that Israel was willing to release tax revenue it has withheld from the Palestinian Authority since February to pay for humanitarian aid. Later, Livni said that Israel would consider releasing the tax funds "for direct humanitarian needs, such as medicines, such as health needs." However, she told Channel 10, the money could not go to the Palestinian Authority to pay salaries. How she planned to get the money to the 'Palestinians' at that point is not clear. Still later, Foreign Ministry spokesman Gideon Meir said the money would only be used to buy "goods and services for medical care that can help the Palestinians."

But now, all the pretenses are off. The JPost article linked above reports that Defense Minister Chief Histadrut Thug Amir Peretz requested on Wednesday that Yusuf Mishleb, the government's coordinator in the Palestinian territories, prepare a detailed plan that would facilitate the transfer of some NIS 50 million in tax funds to the Palestinian Authority. That's right folks, the government of Israel is going to give money to Hamas.

Now that Israel is giving money directly to Hamas, why shouldn't the 'quartet'? And so,
EC external affairs spokeswoman Emma Udwin told The Jerusalem Post this morning that "The mechanism under development by the European Commission to ameliorate the humanitarian situation in the PA territories will likely not funnel money through the office of PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas as initial reports had suggested, EC officials in Brussels said Wednesday. But against the wishes of Israel and the US, the mechanism may be used to pay salaries of some PA officials. Game, set and match.

Need to hear more? Here are a couple of more choice paragraphs from the JPost report:

Palestinian Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh did not comment on the Quartet's decision, instead attacking it for persisting with its demand that Hamas accommodate Israel.

"The Quartet brings from time to time conditions to force the government to concede the rights and recognize the legality of the occupation," Haniyeh said early Wednesday.

Abbas aide Nabil Abu Rdeneh pronounced the decision satisfactory, and called on the Quartet to "find a mechanism to rapidly provide our people with aid." Hamas's political chief in exile, Khaled Mashaal, while on a visit to Qatar on Wednesday, asked "Hamas supporters throughout the world, as well as Arab states, to send weapons, fighters and money to the Palestinian Authority."

Maybe they should ask the 'quartet' for weapons and fighters terorrists too.

Now that the horse is let out, the US is continuing to try to shut the barn door:

However paying salaries is a different story, with both Israeli and American officials saying Wednesday that they could only support such a move under extremely limited circumstances, to a select few PA civil servants and with the money being transferred directly from the international community to the employees.

Direct funding of a health clinic and its doctors, an Israeli official said, might be acceptable. But "schools are a problem because Hamas schools will teach kids to hate; they will teach Palestinian kids to become suicide bombers," the official said.

If the new mechanism helps pay the salaries of some civil servants, the decision could represent the first backtracking by the international community from its declared policy of not funding a Hamas-led PA.

But that statement was likely made well before Amir Peretz decided to transfer tax money 'to the Palestinian Authority.'

As if this were not enough, the JPost reports this morning that the scandal-ridden, Euroweenie funded Peres Center for Peace Dismantling Israel Piece by Piece released a 'position paper' calling for the immediate and continued opening of Karni, citing severe economic damage suffered in Gaza and lost revenue to Israel businesses caused by the closures. [Lost revenue to Israeli businesses? Somehow, I suspect that's a typo. CiJ]

Although the paper acknowledged legitimate security concerns at Karni, it said the long-term benefits of its steady operation outweighed short-term risks.

"Movement at the crossing is key to defining the economic relationship between Israelis and Palestinians," the paper said. "Indeed, the solution, or non-solution, of the problem will play a major role in determining the future economic relationship between Israel and the Palestinians, shedding light on the possibility for future cooperation."

What are a few dead Israelis R"L compared with economic cooperation with the 'Palestinians' - right Shimon?

And lest you think that any of this will satisfy the 'world,' the New York Slimes has yet another puff piece on the 'Poor Palestinians' this morning. I think that makes three this week.

Fellow Jews and Israelis, our lack of faith in God has left us a sick and defeatist people. The Gemara says that each generation gets the leadership it deserves. Clearly our generation is a complete failure.

And for those of you who stayed home on election day, do you feel guilty yet?


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