Trump’s Budget Cuts $10 Billion in Foreign Aid, Israel Unaffected
by Stephen Lendman
Trump’s proposed budget slashes discretionary spending, except for militarism, warmaking, veterans and Israel.
It continues getting $3.1 billion annually in largely military aid, despite facing no threats – the amount increasing to $3.8 billion each year when the current 10-year agreement expires in 2018.
Netanyahu asked for $4.5 billion annually. Perhaps Trump and Congress will oblige ahead, cutting more domestic social spending to offset the increase.
According to the Congressional Research Service, “Israel is the largest cumulative recipient of US foreign assistance since World War II.”
Through 2016, it’s gotten at least $150 billion since 1949, along with state-of-the-art weapons and technology, low or no-interest loans, supplemental handouts when requested, unrestricted US market access, free entry for its immigrants and much more.
What Israel wants it gets in flagrant violation of the 1961 Foreign Assistance Act (as amended), stipulating no aid be given nations engaging in:
“a consistent pattern of gross violations of internationally recognized human rights, including torture or cruel, inhuman, or degrading treatment or punishment, prolonged detention without charges, causing the disappearance of persons by the abduction and clandestine detention of those persons, or other flagrant denial of the right to life, liberty, and the security of person, unless such assistance will directly benefit the needy people in such country.”
Trump’s America first bluster includes Israel. Domestically, it isn’t about helping ordinary people, just its privileged class, wealth disparity ahead to become more extreme than already, human need unconscionable.
UN funding will be cut sharply under Trump’s proposed budge. So will amounts to other international organizations – targeted for criticizing Israel and supporting Palestinian rights, along with circumventing US sanctions on Russia, Iran, North Korea and other countries.
Funding will be terminated for any organizations Washington claims “is controlled or substantially influenced by any state that sponsors terrorism.”
America, NATO, Israel and other regional rogue states are the worst offenders, along with other repressive regimes closely allied to Washington.
In whatever final form Congress passes Trump’s budget, it’ll be hugely regressive. It’s just a question of how much.
It’ll be overweighted on militarism and corporate benefits at the expense of eroding social justice, notably since the neoliberal 90s.
Stephen Lendman lives in Chicago. He can be reached at email@example.com.
His new book as editor and contributor is titled “Flashpoint in Ukraine: How the US Drive for Hegemony Risks WW III.”
Visit his blog site at sjlendman.blogspot.com.
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