I have burned many electrons over the years highlighting reports about the abuse of financial aid to the Palestinians. The Funding for Peace Coalition probably did the most comprehensive job back in late 2004 with their report Managing European Taxpayers' Money: Supporting The Palestinian Arabs - A Study In Transparency. Not much seems to have changed since then.
The Palestinian Authority continues to be led by the same corrupt cronies, and continues to provide “terrorist insurance” payments to imprisoned murderers and their families. The Abbas led PA continues to incite violence against Israel through its public statements, television shows and hate education. And the JCPA reports that the internationally funded PA still has Hamas and other terrorists on the payroll.
In Gaza, the criminal Hamas government has been caught red handed time and again stealing international aid – either selling it back to the people to fund their war crimes, or diverting it directly to their guerilla terrorist forces. And Hamas keeps firing rockets into Israeli towns using their own human shields every day. And the smuggling tunnels bring in more weapons all the time.
James Lindsay, former legal counsel for UNRWA, issued a report Fixing UNRWA: Repairing the UN's Troubled System of Aid to Palestinian Refugees, where the recommendations are more than telling. He argues that implementing them would return Palestinians “to what most of them so desperately seek: normal lives.” Lindsay directly and indirectly argues that much of the UNRWA budgets are spent providing services to people who simply don’t need the charity, and many are not refugees, and some are not even Palestinians. In summary, Lindsay says:
No justification exists for millions of dollars in humanitarian aid going to those who can afford to pay for UNRWA services. In addition, UNRWA should make the following operational changes: halt its one-sided political statements and limit itself to comments on humanitarian issues; take additional steps to ensure the agency is not employing or providing benefits to terrorists and criminals; and allow the UN Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO), or some other neutral entity, to provide balanced and discrimination-free textbooks for UNRWA schools.
Gunnar Heinsohn of the Raphael Lemkin Institute at the University of Bremen, an institute devoted to comparative genocide research, argues quite cogently that UNRWA and other international aid exacerbate the problems of the Middle East, providing unlimited indiscriminate welfare which encourages a high birth rate, but no useful employment. The result is a “youth bulge” of young men who provide “cannon fodder” for their unscrupulous leadership to indoctrinate and send into battle against their fellow Palestinians or Israel. Heinsohn compares Gaza to other areas of conflict, where “The warring stopped because no more warriors were being born.” His recommendations parallel those of James Lindsay.
Heinsohn also points out, as have many before him, that the Arab world is well aware of the issues. “UNRWA is benevolently funded by the U.S. (31%) and the European Union (nearly 50%) -- only 7% of the funds come from Muslim sources.” They allow the West to develop the cannon fodder, while Iran, Syria and others provide the cannons.
US president Obama’s most recent proposal to provide $900 million for Gaza restoration via the Palestinian Authority flies in the face of all this evidence and professional advice that international funding feeds the conflict.
I can only wonder. During the current world economic crisis, why do Western governments continue to pour so much money into UNRWA, the PA and other Palestinian causes, knowing full well that it will never achieve its stated objectives?
Why don’t you write to your local representative and ask how much of your tax money is being handed over to the Palestinians? I am sure that you could suggest some more effective uses for your money right now!