Just saying. The US is in financial crisis... Israel is massacring women and children... America could use that money about now. Maybe Israel could start giving it back a little, say a billion per year? How much free health care for children in America could $3 billion pay for? How many scholarships for kids to go to college? How many science labs in poor school districts? How much public transit could be built with $3 billion per year?
I believe it is time for that to stop, although in the case of war with the middle east isreal will be a usefull asset to america, so its probably not going to stop paying thier allys...
My position has always been that all foreign aid at the federal level should end. Any aid given to any other country should be from private charities only.
I think they should stop it now, we care so much about other countries and governments, but we rarely take a good look of what's going on in our own backyards.
Infrastructure, job losses, debt, failure of financial institutions and banks, etc. should all be things that we need to fix.
Of these, only infrastructure and debt could and should be solved in the long-term by throwing money at them.
Providing aid, money, assistance, etc. to countries is looking after our own backyards. It's called foreign relations.
I cannot see that happening. There are so many citizens in the US who have a vested interest in Israel. Obama is going to need lots of support for his rescue package to be passed in Congress, so obviously there are going to be many quid per pro financial deals going on. Think Bush mentioned about this tonight. That sometimes a President has to make decisions that he did not want to make initially, but that was necessary for baling out something of greater priority. Such as the financial rescue package towards the end of last year and baling out banks that were bankrupt through sloppy management, in order to rescue the US from a depression that could have been worse than the Great one of the thirties. Obama is going to have a tough task waiting for him, no doubt about that. Israel will receive its aid and for the sake of balance of power in the Middle East, I am happy about that. Think this is just one of the important pieces that need to be in place to keep terrorists away from the United States. As no doubt cooperation with Israel must be an important factor to the United States for gathering crucial intelligence on terrorists in the Middle East who have their sights on attacking the United States. That in its own right makes aid to Israel an investment in the security of US citizens, rather than something of a luxury.
Sometimes I feel that Israel dictates US foreign policy when it comes to Gaza Strip. I just do not understand the US/Israel relationship sometimes....
For me it is crystal clear. Money talks! Strategically too, Israel is a very valubale ally in the Middle East from a military intelligence gathering point of view. They are so good at it, would be possibly worth the investment for that alone. The Israelis are tops in intelligence about the terrorists. And of course the US is keen to keep the terrorists out of the United States. In that military intelligence about the terrorists is the most powerful weapon.
So, is the military intelligence and strategic positioning worth funding a government that engages in terrorism?
Terrorism: the systematic use of terror especially as a means of coercion
Webster's Dictionary: http://www.merriam-webster.com/dictionary/terrorism
Yes, Dean -- "Money talks" -- it's more important than human lives, is that the message? That's American taxpayer money, by the way.
With respect: this is an incredibly uninformed opinion. The point is that both government and the private sector have contributions to make to aid and charity. There is enough poverty for everyone to get into the act. No single solution is sufficient. Here is a brief description of the problem (it's a pdf file):
The article is written for the lefty commie pinko liberal democrat organization: Vanguard Corporation.
Have a nice day.
We might have different views entirely about the role of government though.
My idea of an ideal government is extremely minimalist; that which governs the least governs best.
Part of that would be letting individual people decide what to do with their own money, instead of forcing them to give it to charities of the government's choice. I might condone the government forcing people to donate to charity, but in that case, each individual should choose their own charity from an expansive list of approved charities, instead of being forced to accept the government's often dubious choices.
I think it is not for federal government to decide how much tax money should be used on foreign aid. If people wanted their money to go to something like that, they would donate it to charity.
Well... It´s your money... Im from Brasil (a south america country in wich an USA funded military dictatorship ruled for quite a while...), so I think you all know better than me what you should do with your taxes... But, Id like to say a few things, if thats ok...
I agree that Israel is an important partner of US government concerning inteligence issues and stuff... and theyre "good" at what they do...
The problem, in my point of view, is that the message (in terms of foreign policy) US gives the world in that case is that theyll backup anything, without thinking about it... I mean..., there are some evidences that Israel used forbidden weapons against civilians... (not first time if I may say so... Ariel Sharon could barelly leave Israel, cause depending on the country he would travel to he would be arrested at sight for crimes against mankind... but thats another story... and other times...)...
My point is that if the US really want to change the way other countries (not government, but other people) see them, then yes... money can talk... cutting back military aid is a way to say "I dont agree with the way your managing your war". And I believe in that by two resons. First that if some countries are "allowed" to do so... others will follow... Like Russia can now destroy Chechenia if they want, and it will be hard to raise an argument that beats "...well, you were ok when Israel did the same"... When Russia responded to Georgia´s agression on UN troops was a good example of that...
Second... by defending Israel´s way of making war (actually US´s way of making war, at least in Bush´s administration) youre actually weakening your own point that US fights for freedom, democracy, and things that your "founding fathers" believed. I mean... its like going the easyer way: killing people, torturing, diminishing your own freedom, etc... going the fast track..., instead of taking the long way... setting examples that are to be followed... beliefs that are to be universal... you know... all that shit that we sometimes would like to believe that can be achieved in a hundred years or two...
I think that if you go down to the level of terrorists - because you think thats the only way fight that kind of war - it will get you closer to them, and your ways will be so away from your words and your beliefs, that democracy, freedom, etc, will turn into something different from wich we would like it to be...
But again... Im from a poor country that doesnt have to deal with that kind of issue (too many problems to solve within)...
Perhaps the relationship between the US and Israel goes much deeper than just financial aid. There is a very close and personal link between Jewish people in the United States and Israel. A fundamental one that cannot be ignored when financial considerations are made. Quite a number of people in Israel have their origins in the United States and very close family ties. Almost of the umbilical cord variety. Difficult to ignore that. The other way round Jewish people in the US also feel a close bond with Israel, some may feel even guilty that they are doing so well in the United States, and should be helping in Israel. For them money is the best way to express their support.
hmmm... yes... I totally agree that the bond cant be reduced to money, or economic stuff only...
I dont know (as Im not jewish), but that kind of bond is not only with the US, but a real closer bond that was "created" (not created... i dont know the word in english... enhanced... well... I dont know the word) by the extermination attempt... I cant even pretend that I know how it feels for a comunity an experience like that... the closest I have is personal experience... If someone in a family dies, we all come togheter in certains ways... put our problems aside... etc; Thats the only parameter I have... multiplying that by millions is far beyond my capacity...
And of course that counsciensness of being part of a group that has literally thousands of years of persecution on "theyr back" (that expression works in portuguese...) talks higher than money... and even... maybe sometimes... reason...
But yes... I think if someone makes a mistake... you got admit it and try your best to prevent that not to happen again...
And of course its easy for me to say that, cause Im not directly involved in the problem or in the solution...