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Wednesday, October 29, 2003

Your taxes for PLO Propaganda

From FrontPageMagazine via LittleGreenFootballs:
This week, in response to a question from our news agency, the U.S. government has finally acknowledged that the U.S. Aid For International Development (USAID) indeed funds the Palestine Academic Society For the Study of Academic Affairs (PASSIA), the PLO lobby group in Jerusalem which trains PLO media professionals in the art of transforming the image of the Arab-Israeli struggle into an Arab David against an Israeli Goliath.

USAID reports directly to the White House, which makes that allocation of particular significance to U.S. taxpayers. This funding arrangement was made possible back in 1997, under an agreement reached between the PLO and the man who was then the U.S. Consul in Jerusalem, Mr. Edward Abington. Immediately upon leaving his position as consul in Jerusalem in 1997, an employee of the U.S. State Department, Abington was hired by the PLO to be their paid lobbyist and official foreign agent in Washington, D.C., where Abington continues to lobby for the PLO under the framework of Bannerman and Associates. There's nothing like paying back a friend who helps you out.

From 1997-2004, USAID has given (or is scheduled to give) the PASSIA lobby a total of $1.7 million. According to the report sent by USAID, which appears at: http://www.usaid.gov/wbg/partners.htm, USAID funds are used in the following way:

"PASSIA conducts two activities under this agreement. In a series of training seminars, PASSIA provides skills and capacity to young Palestinian professionals in areas such as fund-raising, strategic planning, advocacy, and training of trainers." Such “trainers” may even be exported to the U.S. to teach pro-Palestinian “activists” at the Third National Palestine Solidarity Conference “Hate Fest” at Ohio State in early November - all on the American taxpayer’s dime.