To give money to people who, to this day, support the murder of Jews and Americans is absurd. The "elections" are a sham and have nothing to do with democracy. The leader of Fatah is in fact the leader of the Palestinians and that position is unelected. Whether it happens directly or indirectly, this money will end up towards contributing to the deaths of innocents. - EoZ
Bush Gives Palestinians $20 Million
WASHINGTON (Reuters) - The Bush administration on Wednesday announced it was giving $20 million in direct aid to the Palestinian Authority to help it through a financial crisis.
A senior Bush administration official said it hoped the aid would encourage additional donations from other countries 'at a time when the Palestinian Authority is in desperate need of budget support to pay its bills, maintain stability and allow it to focus on the larger question of governing.'
The Palestinian Authority is facing a severe financial crisis due to falling tax revenues during four years of violence which has paralyzed the Palestinian economy.
The $20 million in direct aid was to be announced during an international donors conference for the Palestinians in Oslo.
It is part of a push to help the Palestinians before their Jan. 9 election, at which President Bush hopes the Palestinians will elect a democratic leader willing to negotiate peace with Israel.
'The upcoming Palestinian elections have made a functioning Palestinian Authority more important than ever,' the official said. 'The United States has a national security interest in helping to end the ongoing violence and terror in the Middle East and to make progress toward the president's June 24, 2002, vision of peace.'
The money is to help pay utility services, including the payment of arrears to Israeli utility companies.