Blank-Check Aid To Israel Costs U.S. Tax Payers $10 Billion
By James P. Tucker Jr.
Free Press) “U.S.
aid to Israel has some unique aspects, such as loans with repayment
waived, or a pledge to provide Israel with economic assistance equal
to the amount Israel owes the United States for previous loans,”
says a Library of Congress “briefing paper.”
This paper, Israel:
U.S. Foreign Assistance, was prepared by the library’s
Congressional Research Service in April and is available to all
congressmen. It confirms assessments made previously by American
Free Press that blank-check aid to Israel costs taxpayers $10
billion a year.
“Israel also receives special benefits
that may not be available to other countries, such as the use of U.S.
military assistance for research and development in the United States,
the use of U.S. military assistance for military purchases in Israel,
or receiving all of its assistance in the first 30 days of the fiscal
year rather than in three or four installments as other countries
do,” the report said.
Because, in the age of deficits, the
United States has to borrow the money it gives Israel in one chunk at
the start of the fiscal year, taxpayers are paying interest on all the
money given Israel for the entire year.
These revelations come as Israel is
demanding $12 billion—in addition to all other aid—because tourism
is down dramatically and its economy is in shambles. The traditional
celebrations of Christmas and Easter attracted fewer believers because
they feared a premature trip to heaven in the war-ravaged land.
Israel is also asking for more money in
Bush’s “road map” to peace in the Middle East, which was
unveiled after Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat named Mahmoud Abbas to
the new office of prime minister.
Israelis are unhappy with the road map
because it requires withdrawal from part of the occupied territories.
So they are asking for money to finance the withdrawal. The United
States finances Israel’s war machine so it can invade and occupy
Palestinian lands. Now, the United States is being asked for money to
pay for withdrawing from part of those lands.
The United States and Israel hope they
have a patsy in Abbas, a close associate of Arafat who has little
support from ordinary Palestinians. But Abbas said on April 28 he
would not visit foreign capitals until Israel allows Arafat to travel
Though Arafat receives support from
Europe, many Palestinians believe he is ineffective and corrupt.
President Bush said he would invite
Abbas, who dresses in business suits and speaks English, to the White
House for peace negotiations but not Arafat. Bush said he will regard
Abbas, not Arafat, as the Palestinian leader.
Middle East experts said Abbas fears
that accepting a White House invitation would make him appear a U.S.
lackey in Palestinian eyes unless Israel stops trying to isolate
“I will not travel anywhere before
Israel lifts a siege on President Arafat so that we can get a
guarantee he will be able to go abroad and come back freely without
Israeli objection,” Abbas told Reuters News Agency.
The government of Israeli Prime Minister
Ariel Sharon said Arafat is free to go abroad but it will not
guarantee letting him return.
Arafat has denounced suicide attacks
targeting Israeli civilians.
On assuming office on April 29, Abbas warned Israel that it must abandon Jewish settlements in the West Bank and Gaza to achieve lasting peace. He again denounced terrorism and said peace is the Palestinian goal. The “road map” envisions an independent Palestinian state by 2005.
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