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Saturday, July 05, 2008

US seeks to name Hamas TV a specially designated global terrorist organization

A resolution presented to the US Congress on June 26 seeks to name Hamas' Al-Aqsa television as a "specially designated global terrorist" organization. The resolution specifically mentions a March program in a child stabs President Bush to death and turns the White House into a mosque as part of a 'puppet show.' Hamas reacted with fury to the resolution.
The resolution, presented on June 26, was "politically motivated and aims at silencing every free voice uncovering U.S. and Zionist acts," said Fathi Hamad, a lawmaker who heads the satellite channel operated by the Hamas Palestinian militant movement.

The draft condemned Al-Aqsa for incitement to violence against Americans as well as sponsoring recruitment and fundraising for terrorism against the U.S.

Hamad said the channel "was mainly a resistance broadcaster that presented programs showing the Palestinian cause."
Al-Aqsa's broadcasts are beamed by the Egyptian government satellite channel Nilesat, which is mentioned in the resolution. The bill also mentions five other television stations but does not propose making them designated terrorist organizations. They are Hezbullah's al-Manar, Iran's (English language) Press TV and al-Alam and Iraq's al-Zawra and al-Rafidayn.

The resolution may be found here. (It's House Resolution 1308 in case the link doesn't work).

I find it curious that the resolution did not propose making the other stations designated terrorist organizations (the bill describes all of the stations' activities in great detail). I am also disappointed that the bill takes no action against the satellite providers, stating only that the President should "designate as SDGTs [specially designated global terrorists. CiJ] satellite providers that knowingly and willingly contract with entities designated as SDGTs to broadcast their channels for providing financial, material, or technological support to terrorist entities," implying that such actions will only be in the future, as if those satellite providers did not know what they were doing until now.

However, it is positive that the resolution also calls on the President to "take into consideration state sponsorship of anti-American incitement to violence when determining the level of assistance to, and frequency and nature of relations with, regional states." Let's hope Congress uses this to cut Egypt's foreign aid (Nilesat broadcasts all of the stations mentioned)!


At 8:15 AM, Blogger NormanF said...

I see no reason for American taxpayers to finance foreign hate America TV broadcasts with their own money. The generosity of American taxpayers is not an entitlement and yes - there should be such conditions placed on foreign aid to further American national interests. It can't happen too soon.


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