Saturday, April 08, 2006

US Withdraws Aid to PA, EU Lapdog Follows suit

In a particularly rushed and ill-advised move, the US is cutting financial aid to the PA, in a show of hands regarding Hamas and the recognition issue. The US claim it will at the same time boost humanitarian aid to the Palestinian people.

The US's lapdog when it comes to all matters Middle Eastern, the EU, will also cut funding to the PA.

The move to cut funding to the PA to try and force Hamas to change position is the moral equivalent of shelling civilians: we know from past experience it doesn't work and rather achieves the opposite effect of the desired one. Rather than break morale and force people into submission, it antagonises them, leading to even greater intransigence.

It also raises serious questions about the West's "democratisation efforts" in the Middle East: here we have a democratically elected Government, elected with a landslide election victory, having its wings clipped from day one, simply because it doesn't do as we tell it to do, whenever we click our fingers.

The move also raises the spectre of other backers stepping in: Iran or another Arab state, further muddling the situation and adding to the West/Middle East polarisation.


The Palestinians' new Hamas prime minister, Ismail Haniya, has attacked the European Union and United States for cutting direct financial aid.

He said the move, taken in protest at Hamas' hardline position on Israel, was "hasty and unjust" and would not serve the interests of the Middle East.

The EU and US are calling on Hamas to recognise Israel, renounce violence and accept past peace agreements.

Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas said the aid cut would hit ordinary people.

Behind Mr Haniya's bravado, he and his ministers are deeply worried, the BBC's Caroline Hawley reports from Gaza City.

The new Palestinian government does not have the money to pay the salaries of its civil servants - it is broke and in debt, our correspondent says.

Officials say they will seek urgent help from Arab and Islamic countries.

Referring to his group's election victory in January, Mr Haniya said "the world should respect the choice of the Palestinian people".

"These decisions were hasty and unjust," he remarked after meeting Mr Abbas, the Palestinian president whose allies lost the election.

Mr Abbas said the Palestinian people "should not be punished for their democratic choice".

By cutting aid, the EU and US were "punishing all the people, workers and families", he added.

The suspension of EU money covers all direct aid to the government and payment of public employees' salaries with EU funds through the World Bank.

All this will play into Kadima's future plans for a "unilateral solution": valuable time is being lost here because the US/EU decision is unlikely to make Hamas reconsider its position any time soon.

actual shelling also takes place...

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At 8:31 PM, Blogger Timmer said...

Gert -

Do you realize that your LAST 6 ARTICLES were slamming Israel, policies on Israel, or hitting up steps in opposition to Hamas/PA? Man, if ever a position were made so clear...;-)

So you hate Israel - I get it. But what is it that endears you so to the Palestinians? Hamas?

And finally, I have been meaning to ask you this question (with all respect): When on Earth are you going to change the name of your blog? You may have started out because you are keen on computer and web technologies, but yours has morphed into a very political blog - and a fairly liberal one at that.

How about "Developing your Left Presents" or some such? ;-)

At 1:58 AM, Blogger Sophia said...


Did you notice that every time Palestinian teritories get selled by the Israeli army and palestinian civilians and children get killed and every time there is an unjustice being made to the palestinians, there is a terror attack in Iraq ?
These are not pure coincidences. There is definitely a link and Dahr Jamail tried to explicit the link in the following article:

At 1:57 PM, Blogger Gert said...

At 2:08 PM, Blogger Gert said...


"So you hate Israel - I get it."

No, you don't get it. You're now aligning yourself with a couple of twits who've blogspammed me, even to the point of trying to take my blog down, simply because they are unconditionally pro-Israel. That's the level you're stooping to.

I don't hate Israel, but I do hate what it does in respect of the Palestinian question.

Your position, predictably, is almost certainly a blinkered pro-Israel and "anti-terror", like the good American that you are.

I find in your comment precious little of substance, related to the actual post.

At 2:36 PM, Blogger Gert said...


Your's is the old "critisising Israel equals hating Israel". The more radical version of this ridiculous stance is "everyone who criticises Israel is an anti-Semite". I've been at the receiving end of that rather a lot of lately.

Complete bollocks. Try and develop a perspective, rather than following this stupid doctrine, designed only to try and silence Israel's critics.

At 4:53 PM, Blogger Richard said...

Hating governments' policies does not equate to hating all the people of said governments' policies.

If it did, I would be labled a 'Britain hater' because of my constant criticism & condemnation of my country's government & policies -- but I am not -- definitely not. I love my country. I just hate what this British government's doing.

The same is true in the US. I know so many Americans who love their country but despise it's government & policies.

Criticising countries' governments and policies has absolutely NOTHING to do with racism. To think and/or claim that it has, is either disingenuous or naieve.

At 9:09 AM, Blogger Wolfie said...

Timmer - Your complaint presupposes that a government's strategy is always in the best interests of its people which seems to me to be a simplistic outlook. It is not uncommon for governments to seek to antagonise external threats in order to distract its people from internal fractures, secure greater public spending, reduce personal freedoms (increase security) and illicit national unity. Regular observers of the region would I think readily submit that IDF activities always intensify when the government is in internal crisis and this very time is an excellent example as the prime minister of Israel attempts to broker coalition deals. I would submit that Gert would like (as I do) peace and happiness for the people of Israel as well as Palestine but we do not share your optimistic appraisal of the abilities (or will) of the Israeli government to secure that future.


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