We have posted many articles here about EU funding of Palestinian terror activities. Now a Foundation for the Defense of Democracies report (thanks to EPG) brings it all together. The whole thing is available as a pdf at the FDD site. Here are some of the salient points:
• There is indisputable evidence that PA money has been used to fund terrorist activities. The capture of the PA owned and operated ship, the “Karine A”, demonstrated PA efforts to smuggle weapons into the territories for use by Palestinian terrorists. Later Israeli investigations turned up documents directly linking PA officials with the al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade, the suicide terrorism subsidiary of Yasser Arafat's Fatah movement.
· The PA finances the al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade. According to Abdel Fattah Hamayel, who was minister for sports and youth in the PA administration of Abu Mazen, the PA sends $50,000 a month to al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade members. The current Palestinian prime minister, Ahmed Qurei, has stated that "We have clearly declared that the Aksa Martyrs Brigades are part of Fatah," and that "Fatah bears full responsibility for the group." The EU has declared the al-Aksa Martyrs Brigade a terrorist group.
· The lack of PA financial accountability means that foreign aid is easily abused. While demonstrating that any specific foreign funds have been directly used for terrorism is difficult, the PA system has operated as a slush fund for Palestinian leader Yasser Arafat. Investigations have proven that PA payrolls were artificially inflated to provide cash that Arafat could use and avoid any foreign or local oversight. The PA payrolls include 7,000 employees that cannot be identified (so-called “PA ghosts”). The salaries of these fictitious employees are a major part of the PA slush fund that supports terrorism. Members of Yasser Arafat's PLO faction, Fatah, who are directly involved in terrorism are, according to the Israeli Defense Forces, on the PA payroll. Fatah receives additional funds by levying a compulsory tax on all PA employees.
· Arafat personally approved payments to terrorists. A report by Human Rights Watch documents and criticizes Arafat's involvement in PA funding of terrorism. Given the control that Arafat had over the entire functioning of the PA, it is disingenuous for any foreign donor to feign ignorance as to whether its money could end up with terrorist groups.
· The EU encourages PA corruption by using a system of Direct Budgetary Support to the PA, essentially a cash handout. Direct Budgetary Support means that the EU has limited ability to properly monitor how its aid is being used. Once EU money is in the PA, with its bloated payrolls and “ghost” employees, tracking the end use is difficult. The EU had previously given the PA aid on a project by project basis which made monitoring the spending of funds easier.
· The EU is not alone in providing indirect financial support to Palestinian terrorists. Many governments and aid organizations have been lax in their oversight of funds provided to the PA. Recent reports have revealed that active members of HAMAS are employed by UNRWA.