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Israel Palestinian conflict : Swingers Discussion 200102101242
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TOPIC: Israel Palestinian conflict
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I'm trying to...because this crap has not been covered by MSM. But it's all over the blogosphere.

Rumson NJ
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Hillary, as a leftist, has a pass to do as she pleases. Who will call her out on it? Who will challenge her or make an issue of it that will cause embarrassment for Obama?

White Hse Sta NJ
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So I ask again, the US government is not supposed to deal with terrorist organizations, yet here we are, not only dealing with them but funding them!

Rumson NJ
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So we get nothing in return, ok.

The monies were not hers to give away. She either needs to get it back or take it out of her Whitewater profits.

Rumson NJ
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Israel has long been America 's biggest strategic bargain. Let's examine some facts.:

For FY2009, U.S. military grants to Israel was $2.55 billion. Since Israel's GDP in 2009 was $199B, total U.S. aid to Israel was merely 1.28 percent of its GDP. Viewed over the five year period of 2005–2009—total U.S. military aid was approximately $12B.

Total exports from the U.S. to Israel between 2005 and 2009 amounted to $57.6B—almost five times the $12B Israel received in U.S. aid during this period. The annual average of U.S. exports to Israel during this period was $11.7B, more than five times the average American aid package!

U.S. military aid to Israel creates a demand for, and the purchase of, tens of billions of dollars worth of U.S. weaponry by Saudi Arabia and other Arab states. U.S. grants to Israel - far from imposing a burden on the American tax payer—actually enriches the American economy.

According to Gen.George Keegan, between 1974 and 1990, Israeli aid to America was worth between $50–80B in intelligence, research, development savings, and Soviet weapons systems captured and transferred to the Pentagon, and testing Soviet military doctrines up to 1990 when the USSR collapsed.

Senator Daniel Inouye put it this way: "The contribution made by Israeli intelligence to America is greater than that provided by all NATO countries combined. ============

That's only part of how the US benefits.

What does the US in exchange for aiding the palestinians? I thought that the US doesn't deal with terrorist organizations, yet they're aiding Hamas. Hamas is on US's list of terrorist organizations.

Rumson NJ
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She's out of a job in 8 months.

White Hse Sta NJ
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Wow none of you care that Hillary does whatever the heck she wants with our dollars eh? :)

Rumson NJ
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U.S. Secretary of State Hilary Clinton has ordered the release of $147 million of U.S. aid money to the Palestinians despite a Congressional hold on the money and her own 2009 vow not to send money to any Palestinian government that includes Hamas.

The hold was put on the money by House Foreign Affairs Committee Chairwoman Ileana Ros-Lehtinen, R-Fla, and intended to stop U.S. funds going to assistance and recovery programs in Hamas-run Gaza, road construction projects in the West Bank that are not vital for security, and trade and tourist promotion.

Before the release of all the funds by Clinton, Ros-Lehtinen wrote Clinton a letter which said she was willing to release $88.6 million of the money as long as it didn’t go to the above projects.

Still, in a move that breaks with administrative protocol, Clinton released the entire amount. Since Congress had approved sending the funds to the Palestinians, the move was technically not illegal, however, the executive branch traditionally defers to holds on money by important and key Congressional members.

Ros-Lehtinen said she was disappointed that the administration "would employ hardball tactics against Congress and threaten to send, over congressional objection, U.S. taxpayer dollars to the Palestinian Authority."

Ros-Lehtinen, also said, "The U.S. has given $3 billion in aid to the Palestinians in the last five years alone, and what do we have to show for it? Now the administration is sending even more. Where is the accountability for U.S. taxpayer dollars?"

During a House Foreign Affairs subcommittee hearing in April 2009, Clinton said, "We will not deal with nor in any way fund a Palestinian government that includes Hamas unless and until Hamas has renounced violence, recognized Israel and agreed to follow the previous obligations of the Palestinian Authority.”

Even so, aid has continued to flow since 2009.

Clinton later back-tracked and said that any future Palestinian government receiving U.S. aid would need to meet those conditions and not necessarily Hamas itself. "U.S. assistance will only be permitted to any power-sharing government in which Hamas participates, if the president certifies that the power-sharing government has met the three principles I just outlined," she said.

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After weeks of blackouts, it became clear that this choice had backfired. Anti-Hamas campaigns calling for protests and strikes spread across social media. Protest camps erected during last year's regional unrest came back to life. In typical fashion, Hamas responded with waves of arrests. In one instance, 120 taxi drivers were imprisoned on suspicion of spreading "rumors" that Hamas was somehow at fault for the blackouts. The crisis finally came to end this month, after the Israeli government transferred more 450,000 liters of fuel into Gaza, even as hundreds of rockets flew out of the area into Israeli cities.

While the lights have come back on in Gaza, much of the international community remains in the dark about the true nature of the Hamas regime. At the height of the fuel crisis, the UN's Human Rights Council found it appropriate to invite a Hamas leader to make a guest appearance at its headquarters -- and teach lessons about human rights to the international community.

If Hamas has any lesson to teach, it is that fundamentalist regimes are the greatest threat to the prosperity and stability of the Middle East. Groups that exploit the democratic process under the banner of religion are often just as morally corrupt (or more) than the regimes they are trying to replace.

It's a lesson that seems to falling on deaf ears among many in the international community, as a rising tide of fundamentalism sweeps our region. The increasing presence of morality police, alcohol bans, and the cancellations of secular legislation is coinciding with the growth of extremist religious parties. In vacuum of instability, familiar promises from Islamists are ringing out in Middle Eastern capitals from the Persian Gulf to the North African Coast.

As the prospect of Hamas clones gaining power throughout the Middle East becomes a distinct possibility, the example of their reign in Gaza should provide fuel for thought -- and cause for concern. The success of Islamist parties in one-vote, one-time elections are not always so easily undone at the ballot box. Just ask the taxi drivers of Gaza.

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"The following is a guest post by Ambassador Ron Prosor is Israel's Permanent Representative to the United Nations.

When asked about his preferred method of work, satirical writer Garrison Keillor once explained, "I believe in looking reality straight in the eye... and denying it."

Keillor's approach has been commonplace in the way that many have sized up the situation in the Gaza Strip, since Hamas -- a fundamentalist Islamist terrorist organization -- seized control of the area in a bloody coup in 2007, after winning Palestinian elections the year before.

Like a group of smiling tour guides at a Caribbean resort, legions of pundits and policymakers have been dancing the limbo with Hamas for years, setting the bar lower and lower for what is acceptable. Instead of holding the regime responsible for the well-being of the people of Gaza, most have turned a blind eye to their oppression.

They continue to place the words "moderate" and "reforming" in the same sentence as an organization that jails woman for taking off their veils, throws political opponents from windows, and promotes genocide in its school textbooks and television shows. The truth is that the only things Hamas has "reformed" in Gaza are the capabilities of the rockets that it fires into Israel -- and the tools that it uses to repress its own people. A recent wave of blackouts across Gaza has exposed this truth so brightly, that few can deny it.

Over the past two months, a fuel crisis in Gaza has brought life to a standstill. Power outages closed hospital wards. Taxis were shuttered in garages. A recent poll conducted by the Arab World for Research & Development revealed that 48% of Gazans held Hamas responsible for the crisis. Only 21% blamed Israel. One young Gazan said, "Our leaders are playing while we are being grilled on the fire of poverty."

The numbers are unsurprising for a population that has seen firsthand how promises of good governance can go out the window when extremist Islamists get their hands near the cookie jar. For years, Hamas has made billions by smuggling weapons through its tunnels on the Egyptian border, creating a black market which eventually undermined the stability of the Sinai Peninsula. As goods and aid streamed across Israeli crossings, Hamas leaders lined their pockets with black market revenues from trafficking weapons, luxury items, and discounted fuel. In February, Egyptian authorities shut down 20 of their smuggling tunnels, including an illicit fuel pipeline.

With this pipeline now out of order, Hamas was forced to legally purchase fuel from Egypt for the first time. There was just one catch -- the Egyptian crossings into Gaza do not have the capacity to meet the Strip's needs, leaving Israel's far more developed aid crossings as the only option. Accepting assistance from Israel would have brought the idiom "don't bite the hand that feeds you" to new levels of absurdity, even for Hamas. Rather than risk the justification of their campaign of terror and policies of incitement, Hamas naturally chose to plunge their people into darkness.

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TOPIC: Israel Palestinian conflict