While visiting Israel as a grad student in March 2016, Taylor was killed in a stabbing attack by a Palestinian terrorist.
Today, more than 20 months after Taylor’s tragic death, the Palestinian Authority is still paying a monthly pension to the family of Taylor Force’s murderer through the Palestinian Martyrs Fund.
Despite Taylor’s murder and the murder of dozens of other Americans, Israelis and citizens from our allies across the world at the hands of Palestinian terrorists, the United States continues to provide approximately $400 million in aid every year to the Palestinian Authority. Meanwhile, the Palestinian Authority funds its Martyrs Fund (perhaps better called the “murder fund”) at an estimated $300 million a year, according to the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs. That is almost one-tenth of the Palestinian Authority’s annual budget.
Money is fungible, so let’s be blunt. By continuing to send hundreds of millions to the Palestinian Authority, we are essentially subsidizing this “murder fund” and facilitating the Palestinian Authority’s subsidization of the murder of Americans and Israelis.
This legislation will stop the outrageous, despicable and unacceptable practice of providing U.S. taxpayer dollars to an organization that funds the murder of Americans. It’s inconceivable to me how this was ever allowed to happen in the first place. And it is unconscionable to allow it to continue on our watch.
We hear a lot of talk in Washington about being a friend to Israel. But our budgets and our actions under the last Presidential administration did not support America’s longstanding commitment. During that time, we sent almost $1.7 billion to Iran, the Middle East’s leading state sponsor of terrorism, in a deal that allowed their regime to continue to develop nuclear weapons and the missiles needed to deliver them.
We’ve allowed those financing the direct murder of Americans and Israelis to count on American taxpayers to fund the next attack. But I will not stand by and allow this to continue.
The Taylor Force Act restores a commitment to one of our closest global allies in Israel and eliminates an incentive for others to harm our own people. I look forward to enthusiastically working to see this bill signed into law by the President in the coming weeks.
Karen Handel represents Georgia’s 6th Congressional District, stretching from Marietta to Brookhaven and from Milton to Sandy Springs. She serves on the House Judiciary Committee and the House Committee on Education and the Workforce.