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Romney Told Donors ‘No Way’ on Israeli-Palestinian Peace


The Cost of Israel to US Taxpayers

For many years the American media said that “Israel receives $1.8 billion in military aid” or that “Israel receives $1.2 billion in economic aid.” Both statements were true, but since they were never combined to give us the complete total of annual U.S. aid to Israel, they also were lies—true lies.
Recently Americans have begun to read and hear that “Israel receives $3 billion in annual U.S. foreign aid.” That’s true. But it’s still a lie. The problem is that in fiscal 1997 alone, Israel received from a variety of other U.S. federal budgets at least $525.8 million above and beyond its $3 billion from the foreign aid budget, and yet another $2 billion in federal loan guarantees. So the complete total of U.S. grants and loan guarantees to Israel for fiscal 1997 was $5,525,800,000.
One can truthfully blame the mainstream media for never digging out these figures for themselves, because none ever have. 

Republican presidential candidate Mitt Romney told campaign donors that the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is going to “remain an unsolved problem” and that pressuring Israel to make concessions to get the Palestinians to act “is the worst idea in the world.”
The Palestinians are “committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel” and are uninterested in peace, Romney said in a video from a private fundraiser in May posted yesterday by Mother Jones magazine.
In the video, Romney discounted the prospects for Middle East peace between Israel and the Palestinians, a goal that has been sought for decades by presidents from both parties.

‘No Way’

Romney said the problems of borders, Israeli security and other elements in the peace process are “very hard to solve.”
“I look at the Palestinians not wanting to see peace anyway, for political purposes, committed to the destruction and elimination of Israel, and these thorny issues, and I say there’s just no way,” Romney said

American ‘Victims’

Romney’s comments will limit his ability to fault President Barack Obama’s handing of the Israeli-Palestinian tensions, said Richard Armitage, former U.S. deputy secretary of state under George W. Bush.
“It’s difficult to criticize the president and his Middle East policy on the one hand, and then suggest, on the other hand, that the best you can do is kick the ball down the street,” Armitage said in a telephone interview yesterday.

Obama lifts freeze on $192 million aid package to Palestinian Authority

US President Barack Obama has lifted a ban on financial aid to the Palestinian Authority. An official with the US Agency for International Development said Saturday that the money had been restored.
Obama stated that the aid was “important to the security interests of the United States.”
The US Congress froze a $192 million aid package to the Palestinian Authority after its president, Mahmoud Abbas, defied US pressure and sought to attain UN endorsement of Palestinian statehood last September. The presidential waiver means that aid can now be delivered.

Palestinian Reaction

“Romney’s allegations that Palestinians are committed to the destruction of Israel are baseless given the fact that Palestinians have expressed support for the two-state solution, and repeatedly recognized Israel’s right to exist,” Areikat said in an e-mailed comment yesterday.
“The best way the Republican nominee can help in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is by adhering to long-standing U.S. policy regarding an acceptable solution that will lead to the end of military occupation of Palestine, peace, and security,” he said
Mitt Romney visits the Western Wall on July 29, 2012 in Jerusalem’s old city. Photographer: Lior Mizrahi/Getty Images


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