Friday, March 28, 2014

28-Mar-14: Once more: European double-talk on the funding of Palestinian Arab terrorism

Palestinian children: In a meaningful financial
sense, these innocents are the return on European
and American investment.  
Over at the update service ("operated by Parliamentary News Services, Press Gallery, House of Commons") they posted the following exchange today to their subscribers, one of whom (H/T Michael H.) kindly forwarded it along to us.
E-001778/2014 | Monday, 3 March 2014
Question for written answer to the Commission (Vice-President/High Representative)
Rule 117: Michał Tomasz Kamiński (ECR)
VP/HR — Salaries to terrorists in Israeli prisons
It is a well-known fact that the Palestinian Authority proudly owns up to illegally spending over 6% of its budget — donated by, among others, the EU, where funding terrorism is against the law — on salaries for terrorists in Israeli prisons and pensions for the families of suicide bombers. The Palestinian Prisoner Affairs Minister, Issa Qarake, has admitted on television that the salaries are directly proportional to the terrorists’ sentences and the number of Jews they have killed.
1. What information can the EEAS provide concerning this case?
2. What is the Commission’s strategy to stop EU funds being used to pay salaries to terrorists in Israeli prisons? As the last known case of paying money for killing Jews was in Nazi Germany, will the EU High Representative condemn this practice?
Answer given by Mr Füle on behalf of the Commission
The EU is aware that the Palestinian Authority has a system of allowances in place for Palestinian prisoners, their families and ex-detainees. This scheme is not and has never been financed by the EU. All the funds the EU allocates to the Palestinian Authority for salaries, pensions and social allocations, are subject to rigorous ex ante and ex post verification procedures, notably including a specific check against a recognised data base of individuals listed as having a connection with terrorism of any sort. Any name which is signalled by the check is automatically deleted from the list of beneficiaries. The Commission would also refer the Honourable Member to its answer to Written Question E-14320/2013
Anyone who has reviewed the tragic history of EC double-talk around the subject of money - generously but ignorantly provided by unwitting European taxpayers via their representatives in Brussels - handed over to the Palestinian Arabs, knows that it is rich in language like what's on display here. Don't blame us; we didn't do anything wrong; we have rigorous ex ante and ex post verification procedures, and so on.

This sand-in-your-eyes resort to self-parodying language is calculated to do precisely what it achieves: to conceal far more than it reveals

Some might be interested to know that we wrote about this phenomenon in the Wall Street Journal Europe as far back as September 2003: see "Blood, Money and Education" [here]. The issue was by no means new or unknown even then.

In fact, from personal knowledge, there has been an inside understanding among the civil servants of the EC and their political masters [read our blog post "9-Sep-13: Snouts and troughs"] since at least 2003 to do whatever it takes to hide the truly hideous things that everyone knows are done with those European funds that go to Ramallah.

In all those years during which torrents of European funding, amounting to billions of Euros, were channeled, first, to the blood-drenched Arafat regime, and then to the corrupt and insider-controlled regime of Mahmoud Abbas, those oh-so-careful Eureaucrats managed to avoid carrying out even one financial audit, until the one published this past December [full text here]. All of this while the EU "provides 20% of the direct financial support for the PA", making it "the biggest multilateral donor to the Occupied Palestinian Territories".

And what did that audit find?
  • EU aid to the Palestinian Authority worth billions of euros needs an "overhaul" and major changes in some areas, the bloc's Court of Auditors said... If the circumstances are difficult, there are still "a number of aspects of the current approach in need of an overhaul," said Hans Gustaf Wessberg, who wrote the report for the court. "There is a need for major revisions such as encouraging the PA to undertake more reforms"... [EUbusiness, December 12, 2013]
  • "The EU should stop paying the salaries of thousands of Palestinian civil servants in the Gaza Strip who are not going to work... They called for a major review, saying money spent on civil servants there should go to the West Bank instead." BBC, December 11, 2013
  • "It is difficult to ensure that EU money is not misused or does not become a drip-feed, it said... The PA is not undertaking all the reforms that the EU would like. At every turn there are political causes and factors. The audit is therefore a political minefield." [European Voice, December 12, 2013]
(It's worth noting that a Times of London journalist who saw the pre-publication version of the audit report in October 2014 wrote an article then that went further, summing up what the pre-publication version of the report he saw was going to say: "Billions of euros in European aid to the Palestinians may have been misspent, squandered or lost to corruption, according to a damning report by the European Court of Auditors..." Our sense is that the report went through a sanitization process after his article appeared and before the public saw it.)

Whatever the 2013 audit report says (and it studiously side-steps any attempt to tackle the profoundly embarassing matter of PA financial rewards for convicted terrorists), two major points at least should be clear: 
  1. It's outrageous that no professional effort had been made to check what was being done by the Palestinians in the previous 13 years. The 2013 audit leaves no doubt that money is misapplied, and it's far from under European control.
  2. The Europeans may have inserted ex ante this and ex post that, but the Euros keep flowing into Ramallah. The Abbas insiders keep telling their own people that, as bankrupt as their regime is, there will always be money for those "heroic" Palestinian Arab convicted slaughterers of children and of Holocaust survivors. Review some of the evidence here: “20-May-11: Rewarding the Palestinian Arab terrorists: is this being done in your name?”; “28-Jul-11: Taxpayer-funded salaries to convicted Palestinian Arab terrorists. What a good idea”; and “4-Sep-12: Where's the shame? How much of your tax dollars went to fund the pension of our child's murderer? More than you probably thought”.
Is it only Europe? Of course not. The US government has very little about which to be proud when it comes to bowing low to the Palestinian Arab passion for lionizing convicted murderers of Jews and placing them on pedestals. (In doubt about what we mean? Please take a moment to review the quotes we brought in this post: "14-Aug-13: Are the Palestinian Arab murderers who are being released at this moment, freedom fighters or terrorists? Let's check with the State Department".) 

For the record: despite our repeatedly sending personal messages to State Department and White House representatives throughout the more than seven months since we wrote that post, we are still without an answer from Washington. 

And in case anyone's wondering: yes, this does leave us with a very bitter feeling.


Michael Horesh said...

As Arnold has written, the audit (in very guarded diplomatic language of double-speak) effectively says that money went astray.
However, the sudit does not mention corruption.
Also this week, a question was asked in the European Parliament if "EUR 2 billion of EU aid intended for the Palestinian Arabs has been lost or misused in recent years."
The official reesponse was able to dodge the point of the question:
there is no such reference concerning the misuse of funds in the report and, on the contrary, it states that ‘the Commission and the EEAS had succeeded in implementing direct financial support to the Palestinian Authority in difficult circumstances’ and that ‘the Commission has established a robust verification system for ensuring that funding reaches the eligible beneficiaries’.
SAD! And there disappears a whole load more of European taxpayers money

Eliyahu m'Tsiyon said...

it seems that the EU does not believe that money is fungible. In their extraterrestrial universe, money is not fungible.

This Ongoing War said...

Obviously money is fungible, and the money counters of the European Commission know this. But they know something else that experience of more than a decade has confirmed: they can hold firm to their formulaic denials, can claim that their checks-and-balances and extra care and other empty expressions are guaranteed, guaranteed, to prevent anything bad from being done with the torrents of money they hand over - and almost no one will challenge this. They will be believed even when their own auditors declare that it's all rubbish. This is appalling at multiple levels. But it's most appalling when you look at the shabby quiescence of the army of reporters and analysts who are supposed to be reporting critically on what is done by the fat-cats of Brussels. Everyone knows today what Arafat did with European funding. But while it was happening, they took their lead from the then foreign minister of Europe, Chris Patten: deny, deny, deny and the critics will go away. It served him well. It's serving his successors no less well.

Mr. Cohen said...

Rabbi Avigdor Miller (a popular Chareidi Rabbi and author, born 1908 CE, died 2001 CE) delivered a free public lecture in the last year of his life, in which he taught that Jews should pray for the Israeli Army.

I personally witnessed this; I was there.

When a Jew recites Tefilat Shemoneh Esrei, he is permitted to add his own personal prayer requests in the middle of the final paragraph, which begins with Elokai Netzor Leshoni MeiRa.

Rabbi Steven Pruzansky of Congregation Bnai Yeshurun in Teaneck NJ told me that I can recite it even on Shabbat and Yom Tov, because it is a communal tefillah, not a private bakashah.