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Obama releases $147 million in aid to Palestinians

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American aid officials said they will restore development programs for Palestinians after President Barack Obama ended a six-month funding freeze that shut down several community projects, including the local version of “Sesame Street.”

An official with the U.S. Agency for International Development, who spoke on condition of anonymity because of the sensitivity of the situation, confirmed April 28 that $147 million, which pays for infrastructure, education, humanitarian aid and health projects, had been restored.

The official could not say specifically whether the Palestinian “Sesame Street” would resume.

In October, Rep. Ileana Ros-Lehtinen (R-Fla.) froze $192 million earmarked for assistance to Palestinians in response to their United Nations membership bid the previous month.

Congress later released about $45 million of the funds. Then in March, Congress released another $88.6 million, but with strict limitations that the money could not be used for road construction or Gaza aid, among other areas.

Obama announced he would override Congress and waive restrictions on all the remaining funds. He explained the move as in the “national security interests of the United States.”

Israeli Foreign Ministry deputy spokeswoman Ilana Stein said “the U.S. may allocate its funds as it sees fit,” but added, “apparently the Palestinians are developing a sense of entitlement to these funds.”

The United States has contributed about $500 million annually to the Palestinians over the past decade, including millions to train security forces. — ap


Posted by Frank
05/03/2012  at  11:36 PM
Overriding Congress

No surprises here.  The most anti-Israel president in history.

(I wonder if they’ll bring back the palestian terrorist “Micky Mouse” show?)

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Posted by Joel Rubinstein
05/04/2012  at  02:15 PM
Stop lying about Obama

None of the twelve U.S. presidents since 1948 have presided in an anti-Israel manner. Some of them made decisions that were difficult for Israel to accept, such as Eisenhower forcing Israel to withdraw from occupied Sinai and Gaza in the wake of the 1956 Suez Crisis. But none of them, and certainly not Obama, have been anti-Israel. Obama doesn’t do everything that the prime ministers of Mexico or Canada want, so does that mean Obama is anti-Mexico or anti-Canada?

This story is about money that Congress authorized for various non-military, humanitarian purposes in Palestine. The U.S. Agency for International Development, which administers foreign aid, is doing what it is supposed to do. This money will go for peaceful humanitarian purposes.

Did you know that during the civil war in El Salvador, each year both sides laid down their arms for a few days so that children could be immunized against killer diseases? The warring parties in that conflict recognized that children’s health was more important than their conflict. The same story is true here. Palestinians want their children healthy. Americans want Palestinian children to be healthy. Israelis want Palestinian children to be healthy. Everybody wants Palestinian children to be healthy, except Frank, for whom every dollar spent making Palestinian children healthy is proof that Obama hates Israel. Sheesh.

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