The Trump administration has announced that it will help end one of the most odious practices in American foreign policy.
As reported by The Times of Israel:
The Trump administration declared its firm support Thursday for a bill that would suspend US financial assistance to the Palestinian Authority until it ends what critics have described as a long-standing practice of rewarding Palestinians who kill Americans and Israelis.
The State Department announcement comes nearly six weeks after the Senate Foreign Relations Committee backed the measure. The legislation, which is named after an American who was stabbed to death in Israel by a Palestinian, reflects bipartisan outrage over what lawmakers have termed a “pay to slay” program endorsed by the Palestinian Authority.
“The Trump administration strongly supports the Taylor Force Act, which is a consequence of Palestinian Authority and Palestine Liberation Organization’s policy of paying terrorists and their families,” the State Department said.
Although not funding an organization this kills Americans and Israelis seems like a no-brainer, there is surprising hesitancy by some to support the Taylor Force Act.
For example, as one would expect, the Taylor Force Act has been endorsed by Israel. But Israel has also expressed some concerns that ending funding to the Palestinian Authority [PA] might have unintended negative consequences for the Jewish state.
As the left-leaning Haartz.com argues:
The PA is far from perfect – it is corrupt, authoritarian, unimaginative, concerned with maintaining its power above actually accomplishing anything productive, and paralyzed by indecision. But it is the best of the bad options out there, and that has to be balanced against the wholly understandable and laudable desire to punish official remuneration for terrorism.
Perhaps less surprising is the opposition to the Taylor Force Act being led by the former U.S. ambassador to Israel from the very pro-Palestinian Obama administration.
In ForeignPolicy.com, Dan Shapiro, along with scholar Ilan Goldenberg, argues that American economic investments keep the West Bank stable, which is in everyone’s interests. Much of U.S. investment goes towards schools, roads, and similar infrastructure projects critical to keeping the Palestinian economy running.
However, it is difficult to take the argument seriously that the U.S. must continue to fund anti-American activities in Palestine in order to prevent instability in the West Bank.
The PA, by giving a portion of the American aid they receive to those who would kill us and their families, are clearly almost literally biting the hand that feeds them.
And as many a hungry dog will tell you, doing that will eventually result in an empty belly.