U.S. Threatens to Cut Off Aid to Palestinians if They Go to UN


This is interesting because the other day the State Dept. press spokeswoman, Victoria Nuland, was asked about this issue and she said that Palestinian aid is based on the needs of the people, ie. it’s not a carrot or stick. It seems she wasn’t telling the truth.

From Haaretz:

The United States will stop all financial aid to the Palestinian Authority if they proceed with plans to ask the United Nations for recognition of an independent state in September, a U.S. official warned Friday.

U.S. Consul General in Jerusalem, Daniel Rubinstein, told chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat in the name of the Obama administration, that the U.S. would veto a UN Security Council resolution calling for recognition of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip within the June 4, 1967 borders and for UN membership.

[snip]

The United States will stop all financial aid to the Palestinian Authority if they proceed with plans to ask the United Nations for recognition of an independent state in September, a U.S. official warned Friday.

U.S. Consul General in Jerusalem, Daniel Rubinstein, told chief Palestinian negotiator Saeb Erekat in the name of the Obama administration, that the U.S. would veto a UN Security Council resolution calling for recognition of an independent Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza Strip within the June 4, 1967 borders and for UN membership.

“If the Palestinian Authority insists on going to the Security Council, the U.S. will use the veto,” he told Erekat during a meeting in the West Bank city of Jericho, according to a statement issued by Erekat’s office.

“And in case the Palestinian Authority seeks to upgrade its position at the UN through the General Assembly, the U.S. Congress will take punitive measures against it, including a cut in U.S. aid,” he said.

Rubinstein said his country sees the Palestinians’ UN bid as “useless,” and that it would be better to conclude a peace agreement with Israel through direct negotiations, according to Erekat.

Erekat said U.S. support for the Palestinian UN bid would actually enhance the two-state solution and peace in the Middle East.

He called on the U.S. to reconsider its position on the issue because “the right decision is to support Palestine’s membership of the UN.”

If Europe had any balls they would tell the U.S. to go screw and they would vote for the Palestinian statehood bid. Anyone who is seriously interested in ending that conflict has to be hugely disappointed with the Obama administration’s constant refusal to do anything other than pander to right-wing Israeli interests. Our standing in the Middle East is on shaky ground to begin with- and yes, that matters- if we veto the resolution and then cut off aid to the Palestinians it will be the final nail in the “we’re an honest broker” coffin. This is just more proof that the U.S. shouldn’t be in charge of these negotiations so long as our political system demands that we promote policies which harm our own national interests for the benefit of a foreign country- Israel.

And what will be the punishment for Israel’s intransigence regarding the thousands of new settlements in occupied E. Jerusalem? Tacit approval.

The Obama administration’s empty soundbites about the two sides getting together, sitting down etc. etc. just sounds like clueless hectoring. Unless Israel sees that there is a cost to continuing settlement expansion, there is no reason for them to stop.

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About Stacy

Attorney, Publisher, Foreign Policy wonk

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2 Comments on “U.S. Threatens to Cut Off Aid to Palestinians if They Go to UN”

  1. thainjacobs Says:

    Hey Stace, hope all is well. I heard a tree fell on your house!

    Thinkin’ of ya

    Reply

  2. tovah8 Says:

    I think it’s congress that’s pushing it but I don’t think the administration official should have said what he/she did. The administration shouldn’t be rubber-stamping or encouraging Congressional extremism on Israel-Palestine.

    Hope your house is ok stacy!

    Reply

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