Reports emerging out of the White House indicate that it is highly likely that President Trump will potentially cut off some, or all, American taxpayer funding to the Palestinians next month. Over the years, the Palestinian government has defied the U.S. demands at every turn. Today, they are no different. They pay salaries to families of terrorists and jihadi’s that are being held in Israeli prisons. Meanwhile the Palestinian watchdog group known as Palestinian Media Watch reported that the Palestinian Authority’s 2018 budget allocated a large portion, $355 million or approximately 7 1/2% of its budget, to the “martyr fund”, an account marked for Palestinian terrorists and their families. Furthermore, they reported that “In open defiance of the US, other donor countries, and Israel, the Palestinian Authorities new budget reveals that it is continuing to reward terror.” Palestinian Media Watch reports. “The amount equals 44% of the funding they hope to receive in foreign aid in 2018.
It is for this reason that Congress passed the Taylor Force Act in the Omnibus bill last week. The Taylor Force Act, named after a US Army veteran murdered by a Palestinian in Jaffa in 2016, was signed into law on Friday by President Donald Trump, as part of an omnibus spending package passed by Congress. The PLO excoriated Congress on Friday for passing the Taylor Force Act, a law that threatens to freeze State Department funds that are dispersed to the Palestinian Authority. That is unless it ends its longstanding practice of compensating terrorists, and the families of terrorists, convicted in Israeli courts.
The Taylor Force Act is designed to:
- Take steps to end acts of violence against U.S. and Israeli citizens perpetrated by individuals under its jurisdictional control, such as the March 2016 attack that killed former Army officer Taylor Force.
- Publicly condemn such acts of violence and is investigating, or cooperating in investigations of, such acts.
- Terminate payments for acts of terrorism against U.S. and Israeli citizens to any individual who has been convicted and imprisoned for such acts, to any individual who died committing such acts, and to family members of such an individual.
With the passage of the Taylor Force Act in December, the United States Congress now has teeth behind their threats to cut off aid to the Palestinian Authority over its funding to terrorists and terrorist organizations. Currently, the United States is the largest donor to the Palestinians. Taxpayers shell out some $600 million annually to the Palestinians through USAID (a State Department program), U.S. economic assistance, and U.S. contributions to the United Nations Palestinian refugee program (UNRWA).
The Taylor Force Act is named after the 28-year-old U.S. Army veteran Taylor Force, who was killed in a Palestinian terrorist attack while he was visiting Israel in 2016. Force graduated from West Point in 2009 and served in both Iraq and Afghanistan. At the time of his death, he was an MBA student traveling Israel while studying its entrepreneurial sector. Force was a victim of a system that financially incentivized Palestinians to turn to terrorism. The family of Force’s assailant continues to receive a monthly pension from the Palestinian Authority “martyr fund.” A problem that the President and his Administration have addressed. However, now the State Department must certify to Congress that the Palestinians have stopped their “pay-for-slay” program by April 21, 2018. If it is determined that the Palestinians did not do so, then the State Department has 15 days to report back to Congress about how much U.S. funding should be withheld from the Palestinian Authority. After that, Congress has until May 22nd to implement the funding restrictions against the Palestinian authority.
Despite America’s warnings and threats of defunding the Palestinians, the Palestinian Authority has made it ever-so-clear, yet again. They continue to pay terrorists, and terrorist families. Palestinian Media Watch’s report on the new Palestinian Authority budget shows that over 7% or $355 million will go to the same old, “Pay to Slay” program.
In all, it is a slap in the face to America and the American taxpayer, since it is American money that is financially subsidizing the violence against not only Israelis, but American’s as well. It is for that reason, that the Taylor Force Act was passed.
Now, the father of the murdered Iraq and Afghan war veteran Taylor Force, who was slain in Israel, has made it clear that this issue is far from being over. His father said that although he is pleased with the passage of the act, and that he believes that the United States will retract its funding for the Palestinian Authority, he hopes that it will set a precedent for the rest of the world.
President Donald Trump has called for the defunding of the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, which is known to provide aid to Palestinian refugees. Taylor Forces’ father said that the shelling out of international funds to families of murderers,”
“is a global matter… and in the end, it only hurts people.”
The Palestinians have abused the Israelis and America far too long. They have taken advantage of America’s kindness and generosity for entirely too long. It is high time for America to cut-off funding to terrorism, wherever it resides. Radical Islamic terror is a cancer on the soul of our planet. It should be snuffed out, like so many lives that they have snuffed, simply because of theological differences. If America simply stands by and does nothing, we are no better than them. Therefore, President Trump is right! America must defund the Palestinians, and the United Nations Relief and Works Agency, and do our part to put an end to radical islamic terror, and the senseless slaughter of innocent Israeli’s and Americans.