19-year-old Palestinian Omar al-Abed will now be paid more than US$3,120 a month by the Palestinian government for killing three members of a Jewish family in the West Bank in their home on July 21. The Palestinian government has made terrorism the most lucrative job in the West Bank. To put the $$3,120 payment to al-Abed in perspective, consider that the minimum wage in the Palestinian territories is $397 a month.
According to a new study by the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs, the 2017 PA budget has committed $154 million for salaries of imprisoned and released terrorists and $192 million for the families of those “martyred” in the conflict against Zionism, for a total expenditure of $346 million. This figure amounts to 49.6% of all foreign aid to be received by the Palestinian government in 2017.
It is abhorrent to think that any money from North American governments might be rewarding terrorism, yet it’s hard to conclude otherwise. The compensation of terrorists is deeply immoral and incomprehensible in and of itself. But it is most problematic because it undermines peace. In addition to directly violating the 1995 Oslo Peace Accords, paying terrorists incentivizes terrorism and further entrenches Palestinian intolerance and extremism. (The writer is a former policy advisor to Canada’s Minister of National Defense)