President Bush finally signed the law passed by Congress banning aid to the Hamas government.
The bill was passed in May by a majority of 361 to 37, with 9 abstentions.
"This legislation reflects our continued concern over the failure of the current government to renounce violence and terror, recognize Israel and respect its previous agreements and obligations," a White House official said.
Hey, it only took the Bush Administration 7 months to sign it into law!
According to the bill, for the Palestinian Authority to receive funding, The President must declare to Congress that :
No ministry, agency, or instrumentality of the Palestinian Authority is effectively controlled by Hamas, unless Hamas has publicly acknowledged the Jewish state of Israel's right to exist and "committed itself and is adhering to all previous agreements and understandings with the United States Government, with the Government of Israel, and with the international community," including the Road Map.
That the Hamas-controlled PA has made "demonstrable progress" toward purging individuals with ties to terrorism from its security services, dismantling all terrorist infrastructure with its jurisdiction, confiscating unauthorized weapons, arresting and bringing terrorists to justice, destroying unauthorized arms factories, thwarting and preempting terrorist attacks, and fully cooperating with Israel's security services.
Under this clause, they must also halt "anti-American and anti-Israel incitement in Palestinian Authority-controlled electronic and print media and in schools, mosques, and other institutions it controls, and (replace) educational materials, including textbooks, with materials that promote peace, tolerance, and coexistence with Israel."
Likewise, they must ensure democracy, the rule of law and an independent judiciary, as well as adopting democratic reforms such as financial transparency and accountability of government ministries and operations.
Considering that Abbas and Fatah have done none of these things, even before Hamas took over, it's interesting that the Bush Administration has continued to fund them.
This year, the United States has provided $468 million of your tax dollars in `humanitarian aid' to the Palestinians and Abbas.Including arms and training for Abbas, `presidential guard' and funding that ultimately went for terrorists like the al-Aksa brigades.
I suppose this was a good compromise with the Saudis for the President.