May 17, 2008 Needless to say, that the Israeli government is not complicit in building Jewish settlements in the occupied territories. The Israeli government is funding and building Jewish settlements and settlements outposts in the West Bank in violation of its own laws and international mandates.
Government officials have long denied their complicity in the construction of settlement outposts in the West Bank. They usually blame Jewish settler organizations claiming that they that are independent of the government and are financed by foreign donations. The World Zionist Organization played a major role in coordinating illegal settlement activities.
However, the fact is that the settlements are financed by the official state budget and secret military accounts. According to Mr. Talia Sasson, the Israeli prosecutor reports about direct involvement of the Israeli government including the Defense and Housing and Construction ministries.
The state of Israel finances at least part of the establishment of the unauthorized settlements outposts. The Israeli government has systematically violated its own laws by financing settlements from foreign donations, from the official state budget and secret military accounts.
The Israeli advocacy group “PEACE NOW” said that at least 51 of the 100 outposts on the West Bank have been created since Sharon became Prime Minister in February 2001. The government says 28 outposts have been built in that period. Sharon was the one who repeatedly urged Jewish settlers to “grab every hilltop as outposts” to prevent any further withdrawal from the occupied territories. The housing and construction Ministry bought mobile homes in violation of Government bid requirements and a Defense Ministry official approved moving them to the West Bank to create and expand outposts according to the newspaper account study. (This allows for a settlement to be established overnight, by simply rolling the trailers), the report said.
Opaque and fungible assets freed up by massive yearly US foreign aid to Israel are pouring into settlement development and building infrastructure, and designed to partition key Palestinian territories and annex others to the state of Israel. US nonprofits are directly financing the coordination of illegal settlement building, encroachment, and violence against Palestinians. Recently disclosed charitable contributions from US lobbyist Jack Abramoff laundered to finance violent armed Israeli activity in the Palestinian territories is only the tip of the iceberg. Considered against the findings of a groundbreaking new study revealing the causes of suicide terrorism, Americans must confront a disturbing question: “Are tax exempt donations from the US to Israel generating terrorist retaliation against America?
According to a study issued by the Institute for Research: Middle Eastern Policy (IRmep) published on October 5, 2005 Israeli government officials disclosed that at least US $60 billion has been spent on financing illegal settlements in the occupied West Bank and Gaza. Nowadays, and with the accelerated settlements activities up to May 15, 2008 the above mentioned figure has been largely surpassed.
Donations to tax exempt entities in the US laundered and used to kill and maim Palestinians while ethnically cleansing them from their homelands is not cost free to Americans. This encroachment generates hatred for US policies in the Middle East and potential asymmetrical retaliation against soft targets in the US from ideological stakeholders as referenced in the 9/11 commission report.
Americans made $136 billion in tax deductible charitable contributions in 2002. A significant portion of these contributions was aggregated by the network of tax exempt charities operating on behalf of Israel in the United States and either transferred to finance illegal settlements or used to fund organizations breaking US, Israeli and International law.
In addition to funding the illegal West Bank settlement of Beitar Illit colony the “Capital Athletic Foundation” (CAF) directly procured sniper scopes, camouflage suits night vision binoculars, a thermal imager and shooting mats so that Israeli settlers could intimidate or shoot Palestinian Arabs moving through newly captured land. The shipment of military hardware from the US to Israel was to be expedited via signed letter from a commander in the Israeli Defense force (IDF) in order to guarantee the “end user” clearance for arms exportation from the US State Department.
Not all illegal settlement funding flows from the US is the product of money laundering. A large number of organizations openly raise and disburse funds for the Israeli colonization of Palestinian territories. Although most misrepresent these activities to the IRS as “educational” activities, others, such as One Israel Fund, Inc. of Cedarhurst openly tout their efforts to transfer arms, and promote Jewish settlements in the occupied territories.
Knowing all those facts, one has to wonder about President Bush’s speech in front of the Israeli Knesset on Israel’s 60th Anniversary lauding Israel’s Democracy as a unique phenomenon in the Middle East. How can a country that kills, oppresses and occupies other people’s lands and properties be democratic??