The likely Democrat nominee for U.S. president, Joe Biden said if elected he would restore financial aid to the Palestinians — money that is believed to be used in large part as payouts to terrorists.
“A priority now for the cause of Israeli-Palestinian peace should be resuming our dialogue with the Palestinians and pressing Israel not to take actions that make a two-state solution impossible,” Biden told the Jewish Telegraphic Agency. “I will reopen the U.S. consulate in East Jerusalem, find a way to reopen the PLO’s diplomatic mission in Washington, and resume the decades-long economic and security assistance efforts to the Palestinians that the Trump Administration stopped.”
President Donald Trump, who is considered one of America’s most pro-Israel presidents, if not the most, cut off financial aid to Palestinians and closed the Palestine Liberation Organization mission in Washington, D.C. in an effort to stop rewarding terrorism. The amount that the U.S. was donating was almost identical to the amount that Palestinian leaders were paying to the families of suicide bombers and terrorists, thus create a incentive for poor Arabs to commit mass murder. Trump also moved the American embassy to Jerusalem, the first nation to do so in recognition of the city as Israel’s capital.
Biden has said he would not reverse Trump’s decision to move the embassy, but he also said he “wouldn’t have done it in the first place.”
“My administration will urge both sides to take steps to keep the prospect of a two-state outcome alive,” he said. “Palestinian leaders should end the incitement and glorification of violence, and they must begin to level with their people about the legitimacy and permanence of Israel as a Jewish state in the historic homeland of the Jewish people.”
Two years ago, Trump signed into law the Taylor Force Act, named for a U.S. citizen murdered by a Palestinian in a March 2016 terror attack in Jaffa. The act stopped payments that were being used to support terrorists or their families.
Jewish groups in the U.S. were outraged by Biden’s comments. The Zionist Organization of America (ZOA) and the Coalition for Jewish Values both criticized the former VP.
“Biden’s stated intention to resume sending U.S. tax dollars to the PA will enable the PA to finance terrorism, and the murder and maiming of more innocent Jews and Americans,” ZOA national president Morton Klein and ZOA chair Mark Levenson said in a statement.
Rabbi Dov Fischer, Western regional vice president of the Coalition for Jewish Values, said it wasn’t just about Jews.
“Every American should be outraged,” he said. “Joe Biden has just said he would break U.S. law to do something which is also, of course, morally repugnant—to re-involve the American taxpayer in incentivizing terrorism against innocent Americans like Taylor Force and others.”