The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) supports Senator Rand Paul (R-KY)’s proposal for legislation to cut off U.S. aid to Mahmoud Abbas’ Palestinian Authority (PA) unless it recognizes Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state. Senator Paul has said that he will introduce a bill to that effect next week.
Last week, Abbas’ Fatah/PA concluded a reconciliation agreement with Hamas, the U.S.- and E.U.-recognized terrorist group that calls in its Charter for the destruction of Israel and the murder of Jews. Senator Paul, a member of the Senate Foreign Relations Committee, said that the Fatah/PA/Hamas agreement:
“…brings both danger and opportunity to the peace process, and the next five weeks may prove critical. Israel cannot be expected to negotiate with an entity that does not believe it should exist and that has used terrorist tactics to seek its end. That being said, the new unity government has a chance to put itself on the record as clearly believing in the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state, as Israel recognizes the right of a Palestinian state to exist … In the absence of such a clear, unambiguous statement on the part of the newly unified Palestinian government, the United States should act to enforce the law and cut off aid to the Palestinian government until they recognize Israel’s right to exist … I will introduce a measure when Congress returns this week to make all future aid to the Palestinian government conditional upon this statement, with a cutoff date of five weeks from now if, upon its formation, the new government does not take this vital step toward peace” (‘Sen. Paul: End Aid to Palestinian Government until They Recognize Israel’s Right to Exist,’ April 28, 2014).
The PA officially recognizes Israel, but not as a Jewish state, while the constituent bodies of the PA, including the Fatah Party, headed by Abbas and which controls the PA, have never even done that. In fact, Mahmoud Abbas and other senior PA officials have said publicly in Arabic to Arab audiences that Fatah does not recognize Israel and that neither Fatah nor other Palestinian groups must do so. For example, Abbas said in 2006, “It is not required of Hamas, or of Fatah, or of the Popular Front to recognize Israel,” adding only that the PA government must recognize Israel for the purposes of extracting concessions from it. Abbas and the PA have also publicly stated countless times up to the present day that they will not recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
Other Fatah/PA pro-terror, anti-peace acts:
- Abbas uses U.S. aid to pay salaries and pensions to convicted and jailed Palestinian terrorists and the families of Palestinian suicide bombers who have murdered Jews.
- Though required to condemn and fight terrorism, Abbas’ PA regularly holds parades and ceremonies glorifying deceased terrorists and names streets, schools and sports team in their honor. Large posters of these terrorists are on display in PA schools, universities and public places.
- The Fatah Party’s last two emblems both show all of Israel labeled ‘Palestine’ and draped in a Palestinian headdress, a Kalashnikov rifle and a picture of arch-terrorist Yasser Arafat. The latest Fatah emblem also shows a key, representing the Palestinian refugees of the 1948-9 war and their millions of descendants for whom the PA demands a legally baseless ‘right of return’ –– not to a future Palestinian state, but to Israel.
- Official PA maps, stationary, atlases and textbooks all airbrush any frontier lines with Israel and indeed Israel itself. Instead, they show all of Israel labeled ‘Palestine.’ Such maps can be purchased in virtually any Palestinian shopping center. It is common to find in such shops jewelry, rings, hats, t-shirts, dishes, cups and so on showing all of Israel as ‘Palestine’
- Abbas said in a September 2011 speech to the UN that “we have been under occupation for 63 years” –– meaning all of Israel is illegal so far as Palestinians are concerned. But then the Palestinians rejected plans offering Palestinian Arabs a state in 1937, 1947, 2000 and again in 2008, because it entailed accepting the Jewish state of Israel. During the 1948-67 Jordanian and Egyptian occupations of Judea/Samaria and Gaza respectively, there was no Palestinian struggle to establish a state in these territories, indicating that preventing or ending Jewish statehood, not establishing a Palestinian state, has been the goal all along.
- In a May 2011 New York Times op-ed, Abbas even wrote that a Palestinian state will lead the P.A., not to peace, but to “internationalize the conflict as a legal matter … paving the way for us to pursue claims against Israel at the U.N., human rights treaty bodies and the International Court of Justice.”
- In a September 2011 speech to the UN, Abbas called Israel the land of Mohammad and Jesus –– carefully excluding the city’s Jewish heritage and origin.
- Only a few weeks ago, Abbas told President Obama that, even if the Palestinians obtain statehood, the PA will refuse to sign a clause ending all claims against Israel, refuse to stop their campaign for the 1948-9 refugees and their millions of descendants being resettled in Israel, and that he will never recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
ZOA National President Morton A. Klein said, “We praise Senator Paul’s initiative on defunding the PA in the absence of a commitment by the PA to recognize Israel as a Jewish state.
“The ZOA has long argued that U.S. funding of the PA should be conditional on the PA recognizing Israel as a Jewish state and fulfilling its 20-year old commitments under the Oslo agreements to arrest, jail and extradite terrorists, disband and outlaw terror groups and confiscate illegal weaponry, and to end incitement to hatred and murder against Jews and Israel in the PA-controlled media, mosques, schools and youth camps that fuel terrorism and conflict.
“Two months ago, I had a private meeting with Senator Paul and raised the issue of U.S. aid continuing at the level of some $600 million per year, despite PA non-compliance with its obligations under the Oslo agreements. Senator Paul strongly agreed that the PA must not continue receiving this U.S. aid while they continue violating every commitment they undertook under Oslo. We are very pleased to see Senator Paul is taking action on this important issue.”