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No Play, No Pay

On Tuesday, January 2, 2017 US Ambassador to the UN, Nikki Haley stated that the United States will cut off funding to the United National Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA) which is the Palestinian Refugee Agency aimed at funding Palestinian refugees.

However, numerous credible reports verify that the funds are used to reward families of terrorists. This falls in line with typical terrorists actions of using refugees as human shields.

Ms. Haley’s announcement came in concert with the US President’s proclamation of the same stating that the Palestinians are refusing to engage in peace negotiations with Israel, so why should the US continue to fund a country who shows “no appreciation or respect” by refusing to “negotiate a long overdue peace treaty with Israel.”

I will bless those who bless you, and I will curse him who treats you with contempt. All the families of the earth will be blessed through you.”  Genesis 12:3

The Palestinian Authority’s refusal to engage in peace talks came shorty after the United States announcement of their intention to move the US Embassy from Tel Aviv to Jerusalem, therefore declaring Jerusalem as the capital of Israel. The US President Trump noted that this declaration did take Jerusalem out of the peace process negotiations so, in effect, the PA withdrew from the talks altogether.

The Palestinians have stated on various occasions that they have abandoned US-led negotiations with Israel. Instead, they will seek full UN membership and seek further UN Security Council resolutions with intention to prosecute Israel at the International Criminal Court.

The US was the biggest donor to UNRWA in 2016, giving $368,429,712. With some of the US funding going directly to the PA or PA projects, the annual US contribution to the PA is $600 million. Overall, the US is also the largest supplier of financial support for the Palestinians. Additionally, in December, 2017 the UN Administrative and Budgetary Committee rejected a request from Palestinians to increase funding to the UNRWA for 2018-19.

The Israeli Ambassador to the United Nations explains. “It is inconceivable for the UN budget and the funds of countries intended for humanitarian assistance and development to be diverted toward incitement and to turned into a political battering ram.”

Malcolm Hoenlien, Executive VP and CEO of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations echoes the US action. The Trump Administration “has a right to standards for aid that it provides, and where countries of violate those standards, or trample human rights, then the US absolutely has a right to withhold aid-especially when all the US is asking the PA to do is to negotiate.”

David Harris, CEO of the American Jewish Committee agrees. “If the Palestinian Authority balks at advancing the peace process, or if it engages in anti-American rhetoric or behavior, then, of course, it’s appropriate to send a strong message of disapproval, including a cut in support.”

There is also the matter of the relocation of the US Embassy to Jerusalem, which Palestine claims as its own (remembering that the US declaration of Jerusalem as the capital of Israel lead to this point).

Clearly by the ongoing conflict between Israel and Palestine, the US presence in Jerusalem could give rise to more intense conflict from the Palestinian forces instead of a rise in peaceful concessions from the PA. This follows the announcement earlier this week that the US intends to cut funds to Iran, who funds various Palestinian terrorist organizations including Hamas and Hezbollah.

In fact, Hamas Deputy Political Bureau Chief, Saleh al-Arouri, declared: “Our relations with Iran are based on the fact that Iran is the most hostile country in the world toward the Zionist entity. Iran is the only country that says that this entity is cancerous. This is Iran’s official position. Iran is the only country providing military support to Hamas in its war to destroy Israel. The aid Iran provides is not merely symbolic. This is real aid, which is essential for the resistance to continue and be effective.”

The United States has made it very clear in the past month that the tide is turning from supporting countries and organizations that oppose Israel to cutting funding that supports the terror to Israel. The ramifications remain to be seen, but the stance is clear. By the proclamation of God Himself, may those who bless (Israel) be blessed and those to curse Israel be cursed. Genesis 12:3

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