Connect with us

International

Biden admin considering resuming aid to Palestinian Authority, despite terrorist payments

Published

on

Screen Shot 2021 03 24 at 2.18.04 PM

This story was first published by The Dark Wire Investigation Foundation

The Biden administration is considering resuming aid to the Palestinian Authority (P.A.), despite acknowledging its continued funding of terrorism. The Washington Free Beacon first reported Monday that the State Department had “privately confirmed” to Congress that the P.A. continues to fund its “pay-to-slay” program to terrorists and their families.

Under the Taylor Force Act of 2018, however, a move to restart funding on the part of the Biden administration would likely be illegal, according to the House sponsor of the law Congressman Doug Lamborn, R-CO, who spoke to this reporter on Zoom Tuesday.

The law conditions U.S. aid to the P.A. on its ending of terrorist payments. According to Israeli watchdog organization Palestinian Media Watch, the P.A. spent $155 million on its “pay-to-slay” program in 2020 and there’s been no indication that the payments will stop.

A State Department spokesperson told this reporter Wednesday that the information disclosed to Congress was part of a normal procedure. Moreover, the spokesperson assured that the Biden administration hopes to ‘reform’ the P.A.’s “pay-to-slay” program and that aid will be compliant with the Taylor Force Act.

“This is a routine report submitted to Congress as required by the annual appropriations act and the Taylor Force Act,” the spokesperson said. “ The information provided in the report mirrors last year’s reports and is consistent with earlier reports under the previous administration, regardless of the previous decision to discontinue U.S. assistance to the Palestinians.”

They added, “This Administration is committed to working to reform the prisoner and martyr payment system.   In administering assistance for the West Bank and Gaza, the Biden-Harris Administration has made clear it will comply with applicable requirements under U.S. law, including the Taylor Force Act.”

During Tuesday’s conversation, Lamborn called the possible move to restore U.S. aid to the P.A. “reprehensible,” adding “This is illegal on the part of the Biden administration if this is actually what they intend to do and it’s immoral.”

Further, Lamborn emphasized that the Taylor Force Act “says that no money can go to the P.A. while they are turning around and using money to pay stipends to those who are in prison for having committed acts of terrorism, including killing Jews or in the case of Taylor Force, an American, or they’re surviving families if they get killed during a terrorist attack. It is illegal for them to do that.”

Lamborn did point out a loophole in the law, which allows for the funding of “limited humanitarian” aid for hospitals, water infrastructure, and vaccinations for children. “But the amount of money the Biden administration is talking about would go way beyond that,” he added.

When asked by this reporter if the Biden administration would need proof that “pay-to-slay” has ended before aid is resumed, the State Department spokesperson declined to comment and couldn’t offer any further information on the matter.

“The reason it’s immoral is, and I can’t understand how in the world the Biden administration, Joe Biden and Kamala Harris and the others are even thinking about this, is because the Palestinians are taking money from U.S. taxpayers, should this materialize, and turning around and paying rewards to terrorists who have killed innocent people,” Lamborn explained.

“Taylor Force was an American student,” he told this reporter. “He had served in Afghanistan as a U.S. Army soldier and he was in Israel as part of his studies for his business degree and he was killed in a senseless terrorist attack as an innocent bystander. But whether it’s Israelis or Americans, we can’t reward terrorist attacks by paying money to them after they are imprisoned or to their families if they’re killed, frankly.”

“What’s the worst of all about this whole setup is that they will pay more money to those who kill more people. It’s a reward for acts of terrorism and Joe Biden and Kamala Harris should be ashamed of themselves,” he said.

Ultimately, if the Biden administration were to restore payments to the P.A., Lamborn said it would be ‘rewarding bad behavior.’ He also says it would be a show of U.S. weakness in the Middle East.

“When someone is flouting your laws, and the P.A. is doing that, they’ve basically said ‘we don’t care what you said,'” Lamborn said. “They brazenly are making these payments despite the U.S. law… so rewarding them I would think would not be good diplomacy. You’re rewarding people for bad behavior and I don’t see how that furthers any interest of the United States, I don’t see how that furthers peace in the Middle East, I don’t see how that furthers an impression of U.S. strength in the region, it does none of those things.”

The Taylor Force Act was passed into law with strong bipartisan support in 2018 and Lamborn hopes a bipartisan group of lawmakers will hold the Biden administration accountable if they move forward with plans to restore funding to the P.A.

“It’s bipartisan in the U.S. Congress that there is support for Israel. Now, some are more sincere about that than others and there’s a few that don’t give any acknowledgment at all to the need of having a strong U.S.-Israel relationship. But I would say the great majority of the Republicans and many of the Democrats do give that verbal support. Now this will test how sincere and how serious they are if it comes to light that the Biden administration is breaking the law,” Lamborn concluded.

WATCH THE INTERVIEW HERE & CLICK HERE TO READ THE REPORT ON THEDARKWIRE.COM

Follow Jennie S. Taer on Twitter @JennieSTaer

Continue Reading

International

VP Kamala Harris publicly mourns Palestinians killed in hostage rescue operation

Published

on

Screen Shot 2021 06 07 at 3.24.24 PM

Vice President Kamala Harris mourned the Palestinians in Gaza who were killed in the successful Israeli hostage rescue operation this weekend during an address delivered over the weekend.

Israeli forces say Hamas intentionally kept the hostages in a “civilian environment.” They also said even the Palestinians who were holding the hostages were also “civilians.”

Rear Adm. Daniel Hagari of the IDF said Hamas has been holding hostages inside civilian buildings, including the locations where Israeli forces rescued Noa Argamani, 26, Almog Meir Jan, 22, Shlomi Ziv, 41, and Andrey Kozlov, 27.

“Before I begin, I just say a few words about the morning which I know weighs heavily on all of our hearts,” she said.

“On Oct. 7, Hamas committed a brutal massacre of 1,200 innocent people and abducted 250 hostages,” she continued. “Thankfully, four of those hostages were reunited with their families tonight. And we mourn all of the innocent lives that have been lost in Gaza, including those tragically killed today.”

The Israeli operation retrieved four hostages who were taken into Gaza by Hamas on Oct. 7. Harris, speaking before the Michigan Democratic Party, celebrated their retrieval but spent more time lamenting the deaths of Palestinians killed in the operation, many of whom Israel has described as terrorists.

“We have been working every day to bring an end to this conflict in a way that ensures Israel is secure, brings home all hostages, ends ongoing suffering for Palestinian people and ensures that Palestinians can enjoy their right to self-determination, dignity and freedom,” Harris added. “As President Biden said last week, it is time for this war to end.”

Fox News reports that Hamas-run authorities in Gaza claim over 270 Palestinians were killed in the Israeli operation, though they make no distinction between militants and innocents. Israeli forces claim the number was fewer than 100.

White House national security adviser Jake Sullivan also confirmed reports on Sunday that some number of innocents appeared to have been killed in the operation.

“We the United States are not in a position today to make a definitive statement about [the death toll],” Sullivan said in a Sunday interview with CNN. “But we do know this: innocent people were tragically killed in this operation. The exact number we don’t know, but innocent people were killed.”

“Every day that we see more innocent people lost is another horrible, awful, tragic day,” he added.

Continue Reading

Trending