JERUSALEM (VINnews) — Recently US President Joe Biden promised to restore part of the aid to Palestinians cut by the Trump administration and provide them with $235m of aid, with two thirds of the aid being earmarked for the Palestinian Refugee organization UNRWA. Biden claimed then that he wished to “restore credible US engagement” with the Palestinians and Israel, after the Palestinians had accused Trump of being biased towards Israel.
It may not be too late for the Biden administration to rethink their aid policy, since the only credible engagement which the US can maintain is to defend Israel against the wanton, indiscriminate and belligerent targeting of its civilian population by a cynical enemy intent on disrupting Israeli life and causing as much mayhem as possible. There is no possible justification for the attacks, Israel has done nothing to raise tensions on Temple Mount and in an extraordinary move even barred Jews from ascending to Temple Mount on Jerusalem Day in order to ease tensions during Ramadan.
All these conciliatory steps have been met with violence, riots and rockets, with Israeli Arabs joining Hamas in causing damage and harm to Israeli property and near lynches of innocent Israeli citizens. Any attempt at equivocation on the part of the Biden adminstration will simply embolden Israel’s enemies and cause more violence and casualties. Only a determined condemnation on the part of the US may reduce Hamas’s hubris and discourage it from its barbaric attacks on Israel.
Israel’s foreign ministry has long claimed that UNRWA “in its current form perpetuates the conflict and does not contribute to its resolution”. The renewal of US aid “should be accompanied by substantial and necessary changes in the nature, goals and conduct of the organisation”, according to the Israeli foreign ministry. The current conflict may help Israel to persuade the current administration of the futility of handouts to its implacable enemy in Gaza, which will invariably be used to fund more arms and more belligerence and will not provide the true aid needed for the Gazan people.