(CNSNews.com) – The almost $1 billon that Secretary of State Hillary Clinton pledged as humanitarian and economic development aid for Palestinian civilians in Gaza and the West Bank in 2009 also will be used to promote terrorism and teach the next generation of Palestinians to hate non-Muslims and oppose the existence of Israel, a panel said Monday at the Heritage Foundation.
Two of the panelists--Matthew Sinclair of the UK-based TaxPayers’ Alliance and Barbara Crook of the Jerusalem-based Palestine Media Watch (PMW)--said western nations are giving millions to the Palestinian Authority without oversight to ensure the money is not being used to promote terrorism or teach “hate” to young Palestinians.
In a report distributed at the event, evidence of terror-promotion by the PA was documented in everything from school textbooks that celebrate the martyrdom of young people and state-controlled anti-Israel media reports, to soccer stadiums and schools being named after suicide bombers and other terrorists.
“The United States has known, since 2002 at least, that U.S. taxpayer money has gone to terror promotion, glorification of terrorists, hate education and incitement to genocide,” Crook said.
“Palestinian Media Watch has presented evidence of this to House and Senate Committees, to the media, and to presidential advisers,” Crook told CNSNews.com, adding that her organization has not met directly with Secretary of State Hillary Clinton since she was a senator from New York and has not met with anyone from the Obama administration.
Crook said, as a senator, Clinton was briefed about the PMW’s findings and was supportive of their cause.
“In 2007, then-Sen. Hillary Clinton described the PA education system as, quote, ‘the most horrific child abuse,’” Crook said. “So why is the United States about to give another $900 million to the Palestinian Authority when it’s absolutely clear that the PA has failed in the past and continues to fail to meet a single condition attached to this funding?”
Crook cited the U.S. Foreign Operations Bill that prohibits giving federal dollars “to or through any individual, private or government entity or educational institution that the secretary knows or has reason to believe, advocates, plans, sponsors, engages in or has engaged in terrorist activities.’
“When then-Senator Clinton introduced our report on Palestinian school books in 2007, her comment was, ‘These textbooks do not give Palestinian children an education – they give them indoctrination,’” Crook quoted Clinton as saying. “‘It basically profoundly poisons the minds of these children,’” Clinton said, according to Crook.
“And she made much the same comments when she saw music videos aimed at children,” Crook said.
When Clinton pledged the $900 million at the International Conference in Support of the Palestinian Economy for the Reconstruction of Gaza in Egypt on March 2, the secretary of State said, “time is of the essence,” in giving the money to the PA.
“Time is of the essence--we cannot afford more setbacks and delays, or regrets about what might have been had different decisions been made,” Clinton said. “And now is not the time for recriminations. It is time to look ahead.
“We gather today to address the humanitarian and early recovery needs of the Palestinian people after the recent conflict, and the United States joins with others in generously stepping forward to help,” Clinton said.
“Our pledge of over $900 million, designed in coordination with the Palestinian Authority and to be submitted to the United States Congress, will deliver assistance to the people of Gaza and the West Bank,” she added.
“So we will work with our Palestinian partners, President Abbas and Prime Minister Fayyad, to address critical humanitarian, budgetary, security, and infrastructure needs,” Clinton said.
“We have worked with the Palestinian Authority to install safeguards that will ensure that our funding is only used where, and for whom, it is intended, and does not end up in the wrong hands,” she said.
Some of the evidence of terror promotion cited in The Taxpayers’ Alliance report includes an article in the official newspaper of the Palestinian Authority, Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, about Samir Kuntar, who crushed the head of a 4-year-old Israeli boy and also killed his father. Kuntar was later released in a prisoner exchange with Hezbollah.
“President Mahmoud Abbas congratulated yesterday’s exchange of prisoners and bodies of martyrs,” the article said in June 2008. “The president sent blessings to Kuntar’s family.”
The same article had praise for Dalal Mughrabi, a female Palestinian terrorist who with fellow terrorists killed 37 civilians in 1978, including an American photographer. The PA has named schools and summer camps after Mughrabi.
“Blessings to the spirit of Dalal Mughrabi and to the friends of the heroes,” the article said.
A school textbook is quoted in the report as encouraging martyrdom for young Palestinians.
“Your enemies seek life while you seek death,” it reads. “They seek spoils to fill their empty stomachs while you seek a Garden [Paradise] as wide as are the heavens and the earth … death is not bitter in the mouth of the believers.”
President Barack Obama has pledged his support for the $900 million in aid to the PA and is expected to speak about it when President Abbas meets with him in Washington later this month.
“So let’s ask the question again,” Crook said as she concluded her remarks. “Why is the United States about to write a check for $900 million to the Palestinian Authority when it is very clear from history and present examples that they have not met and continue to not meet the demands of U.S. law?
“The answers range from bureaucratic intransigence – look at USAID’s refusal to monitor the abuses of its funding – to lack of political will, to just plain denial of the facts,” Crook said.
“We are so desperate for peace that we convince ourselves that we have found a partner for peace despite all the evidence to the contrary,” Crook said. “But the fact remains that this loss of control over what is being done with U.S. dollars has resulted in U.S. money being used to promote hatred and terror.”
“[Giving the aid] constitutes criminal negligence,” she said.