Americans back Israel flotilla raid, Obama to give more money to Gaza

Wednesday, June 09, 2010 |  Israel Today Staff

Rep. Barney Frank (D-MA) pointed out that if an organization like was operating out of Canada and threatening US citizens, "America would have a tougher blockade than Israel has."

Meanwhile, US President Barack Obama was expected to offer even more money to Palestinian leader Mahmoud Abbas when the latter visited the White House on Wednesday.

An Obama Administration official told Reuters that the money would be aimed at "improving life for the people of Gaza."

Washington likes to think that by giving the money to Abbas it will stay out of the hands of Hamas. But last October, Bassem Khoury, economic minister for the Palestinian Authority, revealed in an interview with French newspaper Le Monde that Hamas ends up pocketing much of the money anyway.

"The Palestinian Authority in Ramallah is continuing to pay the salaries of civil servants in Gaza and this is half of our budget," he said. "Then these employees buy goods that come in by way of the [smuggling] tunnels, on which Hamas gets paid a tax. Hamas doesn't know what to do with all its money."

Khoury's remarks betrayed the fact that Gaza, and in particular Hamas, has plenty of money to care for its own, meaning US taxpayers' dollars are being needlessly sent there.

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