One of the more intractable components of our foreign policy dating back to the Clinton years has been the obsession of creating a Palestinian state. The career egghead diplomats in the State Department believed that if we would only send billions in aid to the venerable leaders of the Palestinian Authority and grant them statehood, they would put down their terror toys and sing kumbaya. To that end, we have given them billions in aid and provided them with military training during the past two decades.
Some conservatives have done a good job exposing the absurd expenditures that taxpayers fund, such as wine-tasting sessions and reality TV in India. But wine-tasting is certainly not as offensive as funding terrorists. It’s time to end this insanity once and for all.
Congressman Ron DeSantis (R-FL), a member of the Foreign Affairs Committee, is introducing legislation today that will finally halt the open-ended commitment to the so-called Palestinians. No, a few hundred million dollars in cuts will not balance the budget; however, we should not be sending one red cent to terrorists anywhere in the world.
The Palestinian Accountability Act would cut off all aid to the PLO, estimated at $500 billion, until among other things:
- An audit of the PLO’s governing authority is conducted
- They dismantle the terrorist organizations
- All incitement in their media and education is halted
- Israel’s right to exist is publicly recognized and accepted
The bill also prohibits official state documents from referring to areas of Israel as “Palestine” until those benchmarks are met. This comes as the Obama administration refuses to recognize Jerusalem as part of Israel on the map depicting Obama’s visit.
The same accountability measures are applied to funding for the United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA), the organization that harbors Palestinian terrorists under the guise of humanitarian aid. We are the largest bilateral donor to UNRWA. Finally, the bill would cut off all aid to the UN if they recognize a Palestinian state at the general assembly this year.
This bill also sends a powerful message to Obama while he is harassing Netanyahu on his trip to Israel. We all know that he is only in Israel for one purpose – to let Abbas know he has his back and to pressure Israel. It’s ironic how he demands we accommodate those who come here illegally, yet he is railing against the “illegal settlement” of Israelis who want to live in their homeland. Maybe he will become the housing czar there and grant them amnesty. Anyway, by standing behind this bill, Republicans will telegraph the message to Obama that we are done playing the Palestinian game. We have better things to do with our foreign policy and limited resources than funding terror.
I would encourage all members to cosponsor this bill. Republicans on the foreign affairs committee should incorporate this bill into the annual State-Ops appropriations bill as well.