Monday, August 10, 2009

Israeli Interior Minister: Israel will build settlements with or without U.S. support. Let's make sure it's without.

What does it take for the United States to stop funding the Israeli occupation? The Israeli daily news source YNet is reporting that Interior Minister Eli Yishai and other Israeli government officials visited an area of planned Israeli settlement construction which, if completed, would cut the West Bank nearly in half. During their tour, officials reaffirmed the government's commitment to build settlements with or without U.S. approval:
"The tour took place near a police station, the only Israeli building in E1. "At some point, we will have to build, even if we don't manage to convince the Americans, at least in the settlement blocks," Yishai said."
YNet goes on to quote the mayor of one of the largest settlements in the West Bank:
"Maaleh Adumim Mayor Kashriel said, The Americans are good friend of Israel, but Israel's foreign policy also has its red lines."
American foreign policy should have its red lines, too. In fact, it does--U.S. law prohibits aid or military sales being used to violate human rights or take aggressive action. While the Obama Administration has had strong words against the expansion of Israel's settlements, our tax money keeps funding occupation and apartheid--and the settlements keep growing. It's time to establish a red line--and cut our funding of Israel's illegal occupation.