COMMENTARY | According to the Washington Examiner, Sen. Rand Paul, R-Kentucky has seized upon Secretary of State John Kerry’s odious Israel apartheid state statement and has offered the “Stand with Israel Act of 2014”
The act would cut off all aid to the Palestinian Authority until the president certifies to Congress that it has done the following:
“(1) Formally recognized the right of Israel to exist as a Jewish state;
(2) Publicly recognized the state of Israel;
(3) Renounced terrorism;
(4) Purged all individuals with terrorist ties from security services;
(4) Terminated funding of anti-American and anti-Israel incitement;
(5) Publicly pledged to not engage in war with Israel; and
(6) Honored previous diplomatic agreements.”
The bill neatly combines could policy with good politics.
First it recognizes that the true obstacle to peace in the Middle East, contrary to what Kerry implied, are the Palestinians. It provides appropriate pressure on the Palestinian Authority to adhere to norms of diplomacy.
Second, it places Paul on the right side of a political issue and in support of Israel. It divorces the senator from his father, Ron Paul, who favored cutting off aid from Israel and who was widely recognized as being opposed to the Jewish state.
Mind, it likely does not go far enough. The dirty little secret is that the PA is not only corrupt, diverting foreign aid to the private bank accounts of many of its leaders, but is also a flagrant human rights abuser. Supporters of the two state solution like to shy away from the fact that a Palestinian State would be a kind of mini Iran, imposing Sharia law, oppressing women and religious minorities.
Extending Paul’s idea to impose sanctions on the Palestinians might be extended to try to force it to adhere to human rights norms and stop acting as a tyranny. Perhaps one of Paul’s potential 2016 rivals could weigh in on that.