The savage murder of three innocent Jewish boys — Gil-ad Shaar, 16, Eyal Yifrach, 19, and Naftali Fraenkel, 16, a duel Israeli-U.S. citizen — is a chilling reminder of the threats Israelis face every day.
As the three families and the Jewish people around the world mourn the boys' deaths, the Israeli government needs the support of the United States now more than ever.
In a statement, President Obama said: “I have offered our full support to Israel [and] the Palestinian Authority to find the perpetrators of this crime and bring them to justice, and I encourage Israel [and] the Palestinian Authority to continue working together in that effort.” And he called for both sides to not “destabilize the situation.”
This statement is stunning because it fails to acknowledge that Hamas — thanks in many ways to the Obama administration — is now a member of the Palestinian Authority, and as a result, could become eligible to receive foreign assistance. It is also stunning for the fact that it urges restraint on Israel’s behalf after the cold-blooded murder of three of its citizen by terrorists.
Furthermore, the president neglects to condemn those in the Palestinian Authority and its official media publications who showered praise on the kidnappers, going so far as to call for further kidnappings of Jews.
The mother of one of the accused Hamas members said of her son, “They’re throwing the guilt on him by accusing him of kidnapping. If he truly did it – I’ll be proud of him till my final day.”
As the ambulance transported the three boys from their makeshift graves to prepare for a funeral, Palestinians threw rocks and attacked the vehicle. And during the funeral service, rockets were fired into southern Israel from Gaza.
This type of response should be unthinkable in a civilized world, but for Hamas, it is par for the course.
Hamas has instituted a culture of death aimed at the destruction of the Jewish people. Responsible for the murder of dozens of Americans and the launching of more than 12,000 missiles into Israel, violence is woven into the fabric of their society. Their sickening propaganda to children on Al-Aqsa TV seeks to dehumanize Jews and regularly contains stuffed animals and cartoon characters calling for the murder of Jewish “apes and pigs.”
Immediately upon unification with Fatah, Hamas claimed that an uprising would soon begin in the West Bank, and has sought to expand terrorist operations, including plans for kidnappings.
The United States had ample warnings this would happen, yet they were not heeded. In response, along with Rep. Trent Franks, R-Ariz., I introduced a bipartisan resolution that calls for the immediate suspension of foreign assistance to the Palestinian Authority.
Our laws are clear: The United States cannot fund a power-sharing Palestinian government that includes Hamas as a member, or one that results from an agreement with Hamas and over which Hamas exercises “undue influence.”
Since the Obama administration immediately pledged support for the unity government, Hamas terrorists have intensified their attacks on Israel from both Gaza and now the West Bank, pushing us further from peace, not closer.
The United States cannot fund a unity government that will not adhere to the Quartet principles of recognition of the state of Israel, will not abide by all previous agreements with Israel, and will not renounce violence as a strategy. To date, Hamas is 0-3.
I join with the nation of Israel and Jews everywhere in mourning the horrific deaths of these three innocent boys. This most recent and incredibly heinous act must compel the Obama administration to immediately reverse course and defund the Palestinian Authority.Rep. Michele Bachmann, R-Minn., is a member of the House Intelligence Committee.