The Biden administration says that there is “no guarantee” that the pro-Palestinian terrorist-designated organization Hamas will not receive U.S. aid directed to Gaza.
With more than $100 million of taxpayer dollars in allocation to the Palestinian government and aid groups in Gaza, the United States says that there’s no guarantee that some of that money won’t fall into the hands of militants.
Since the latest conflict began in mid-May, Hamas and other militant organizations have launched thousands of rockets at Israel, a large portion of which fell short of their targets and hit civilians in Gaza.
“As we've seen in life, as we all know in life, there are no guarantees,” a senior official with the State Department said when asked if there was a chance Hamas would receive funds intended for humanitarian aid, according to Newsweek. “We’re going to do everything that we can to ensure that this assistance reaches the people who need it the most,” the official added.
Under former president Donald Trump, the State Department suspended aid to Iran in 2018 due to the country’s support of terrorist-designated organizations like Hamas.
The State Department official’s “no guarantees” remarks prompted a backlash from Rep. Darrell Issa, who serves on the House Foreign Affairs Committee.
“The Biden Administration has a fundamental obligation to do whatever it can to prevent American taxpayer dollars from winding up in the bank accounts of terrorists. It is in no way acceptable for the State Department to flippantly offer that this is all a matter of fate well beyond their control,” said Issa to the Washington Free Beacon.
“This reinforces the imperative of Congress' core oversight function, and I hope that the White House provides quick clarification and commits to redoubling all its efforts to ensure that American aid is never handed over to those who would use it to take other people's lives,” Issa said.
The possibility that aid funds could fall into the hands of a terrorist-designated organization like Hamas highlights the need for reform in approving aid organizations and setting up oversight to ensure that the money goes through the proper channels and reaches its intended recipients instead of being potentially diverted into terrorist activity.