Foreign aid is little more than welfare to nation states. It is essentially a compulsory transfer of wealth – something conservatives claim they hate about Obama. Ironically, foreign aid is one thing that Christian Conservatives insist on in regards to the state of Israel, and it is killing her.
Israel currently is the recipient of $2B in yearly US foreign aid. Next year it will be over $3B. Unfortunately her enemies receive $15B each year. Put another way, roughly one-third of all US foreign aid goes to Arab countries, all of which hate Israel. The US annually gives about 7 times more to Israel’s enemies than to Israel. Worse, the very people that claim to love Israel here in the US insist on continuing this foreign bribery of nation states.
That $2B yearly pay-off to Israel is a sufficient amount of control money to require her to ask the United States’ permission before she acts – and then, only in the United States’ best interests, not her own, and as the United States gives permission. She must grovel before the United States for military actions to defend herself, resolve border disputes with neighbors and even engage in peace negotiations.
Foreign aid is little more than one lobbyist peddling their wares to a congressman at the expense of the constituents. In this case, one nation state buying influence at the expense of the citizens of the other. Worse, in the case of Israel, that money must be used to buy goods from American companies. It’s corporate welfare, wrapped in the guise of “aid,” at the expense of the ability of Israel to act in its own best interests.
Foreign aid exists only to alter a nation’s actions in its own best interest. Otherwise, the free markets and “honest friendship” would suffice. Surely individuals who love Israel would want her to act in her best interests.
One of the larger criticisms, and rightfully so, by conservatives – especially Christian Conservatives – is that welfare makes individuals lazy. It handicaps them in terms of ambition and makes it considerably harder for them to be self-reliant. It allows them to get away with behavior that is harmful without fear of natural consequences.
Why is it, then, that Christian Conservatives have no issue with, and in fact many times insist on, doing the very same thing to Israel? If these conservative principles are true, and universally true, then they should be applied not only to our domestic policy, but our foreign policy as well. After all, universal truths apply, well, universally, no? If not, then they should by all means be abandoned and a search put on for new principles, both foreign and domestic. Why then this insistence on foreign aid to Israel, or any other country? Cut them all off from the taxpayer teat.
Private citizens gave over $17B to Israel between 1948 and 1993. In terms of current dollars at 1993 values, that’s just a hair over $27B. In 1994 the amount was $1.4B and the yearly amount has risen slightly since then to $1.5B last year. Further, Israel Bonds have raised an additional $13B. This is the concept of free markets and private charity in action. That would be a substantial amount of money from private sources if tax payers weren’t giving 10 times that amount to her enemies via foreign aid.
Why do “conservatives” insist on building the machinery of the state to achieve the wanted outcome that they aren’t willing to leave to chance? When those controls are taken over by people that don’t share those goals, the machinery inevitably becomes a platform from which evil is mandated.
Case in point: the $1.5B given to the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt this April. Can anyone that loves Israel tell me this is beneficial to Israel? No, but it’s exactly what happens when this type of foreign policy comes to fruition.
Foreign aid has not only been taken from us via taxes, but it’s also going to directly fund things which many of us find abhorrent. Jefferson had strong words on this type of activity, yet many Christian Conservatives continue to insist on just such a thing as long as Israel is funded by it. It’s unconscionable, and it’s literally killing Israel, as money from American taxpayers goes to fund attacks against Israeli citizens. The further economic and diplomatic costs have yet to be counted, but rest assured, they are high – as are all costs when subsidies are involved (public school funding, farm subsidies, ethanol subsidies, energy subsidies, etc.).
Nowhere is there a more ridiculous claim than that created by conservatives who want our government to run less of our lives here, while simultaneously running more of Israel over there. If Christian Conservatives truly want to benefit Israel, they will insist on cutting her loose from American “foreign aid”, unbinding her from the whims of those at the controls of the machinery of the American state, and allowing her to chart her own course on the tempestuous seas of liberty, just as we ask our government to allow us to do with our own individual lives here. Anything less is simply hypocritical, tyrannical, and undeserving of the title of “friend.”
Image: Western Wall Jerusalem; Courtesy of Wayne McLean ( jgritz)