Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Clinton Administration Again Subsidizes Israel's West Bank Settlements

Magazine article Washington Report on Middle East Affairs

Clinton Administration Again Subsidizes Israel's West Bank Settlements

Article excerpt

Clinton Administration Again Subsidizes Israel's West Bank Settlements

THE CLINTON ADMINISTRATION has reached back 35 years to pluck out a legalism permitting it once again to ignore the mandate of the 1991 Congress that one dollar should be deducted from loan guarantees to Israel for every dollar spent on settlements and other expenditures across the Green Line that are "inconsistent with the [loan guarantee] legislation."

To date President Clinton has evaded the intent of Congress without consulting with them by restoring more than $600 million of the one billion deducted from the guarantees, over protests that this was not legal.

Most recently, in 1995 he restored $303 million, saying this was to reimburse Israel for the costs of "re-deployment" from six West Bank cities and towns. In 1996 he restored $300 million because of "the ongoing costs" to Israel of carrying out the now moribund Jordan and Palestinian peace processes.

To justify doing this, he cited the 35-year-old foreign assistance law which gives the president the authority to restore aid or switch it from one category to another for good reason. …

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