Israel Law Center founder Nitsana Darshan-Leitner told Breitbart News Daily in an exclusive Memorial Day radio special on SiriusXM 125 The Patriot Channel that it’s past time for the United States to cut funding to Palestinian terrorists and their families.
Darshan-Leitner’s organization, an Israel-based law group, is representing the family of Taylor Force, a U.S. Army veteran who was murdered in cold blood by a Palestinian terrorist last year in Israel after serving the U.S. in both Iraq and Afghanistan. Force was in Israel as part of a school mission trip, and was killed by a Palestinian terrorist who thought he was attacking Jews—even though Force was not Jewish but Christian.
“Taylor Force was a serviceman and he went with his school on a mission to Israel, a seven days tour,” Darshan-Leitner said in the interview, which aired Monday morning. ”One of his visits in Israel was on Jaffa. It was nighttime, and a Palestinian young man came and stabbed him and many, many others with a knife. He killed him and also injured many, many others… He did a great service to his country. He served in Iraq and served in Afghanistan. And he came to Israel on a tour in the framework of his school.”
Force was a 28-year-old West Point graduate who served as a U.S. Army officer in Iraq and Afghanistan before enrolling in graduate school at Vanderbilt University. He was killed in a tourist area in Jaffa Port. At the time of the terrorist murder, then-Vice President Joe Biden was meeting with then-Israeli President Shimon Peres in Tel Aviv when the 21-year-old Palestinian terrorist went on the stabbing spree claiming Force’s life and injuring many others.
“It’s a tourist area,” Darshan-Leitner said. “The city of Jaffa is near Tel-Aviv. It’s a very hopping place at nighttime. There is a boardwalk. Very late, there is a lot of people walking by the beach. And it’s the kind of a place that you do not expect to be killed or stabbed. Anywhere in Israel, it’s not supposed to be dangerous a place. This is a mixed area and there are a lot of Arabs in Jaffa, but the Palestinian who stabbed Taylor Force to death was not an Israeli Arab. He came from the territories and simply decided that he’s going to out tonight and stab Jews. He did not recognize that Taylor Force was not a Jew, and simply killed him with the rest of the people there.”
In response to the terrorist attack that claimed Force’s life, members of the U.S. Congress drafted legislation in his name—the Taylor force Act—which would cut U.S. funding to the Palestinian Authority until the organization stopped paying terrorists behind attacks like this and their families.
“The Taylor Force Act would take away the amount of money the Palestinians obtain,” Darshan-Leitner said. “The Palestinians Authority is paying their prisoners, the secure prisoners who are sitting in the Israeli jails being sentenced for killing and for taking acts of murder and acts of terror against civilians, and also the amount of money the Palestinians are paying the families of the suicide bombers. They have been rewarding the families of those who detonate themselves and have killed the civilians. [The bill would take the money out] from the U.S. aid that the U.S. provides the Palestinian Authority. It’s a total sort of deduction. They take the awards that the Palestinian Authority has given, they take it from the prisoners and families, and they take it from what the U.S. gives the Palestinians.”
She explained that it is “shocking” right now that the United States government is funding the Palestinians, who turn around and use the money to fund terrorists and their families after they commit these attacks.
“This money is inducing others to go and kill, and as you can see not only Israelis are getting killed on the streets of Tel-Aviv and Jerusalem,” Darshan-Leitner said. “A lot of tourists are getting killed. Israel is a popular country and gets a lot of visits from people all over the world, and Taylor Force was not the first American getting killed in Tel-Aviv and unfortunately will not be the last one. The United States knows that part of the money they are giving to the Palestinian Authority is going to pay these prisoners and to pay the families of those who have killed their own civilians, American citizens, and as you say it’s totally ironic, horrible and unbelievable that the administration keeps supporting the Palestinian Authority without demanding right now to bring to a halt right now all these payments to the prisoners and the families of suicide bombers.”
She added that unless the money flow from the United States is completely cut off, there is “not a chance—not a chance” that the Palestinian Authority would stop using it to fund terrorists and the families of terrorists. The reason being, she said, is because it is in the “culture” of the Palestinians to commit these acts of horror against Israelis and the entire Western World.
“They are not going to stop these payments,” Darshan-Leitner said. “It’s basically their culture. The culture is to promote violence against Israel. They incite people to go and kill. There is indoctrination of the people in the Palestinian Authority, areas to go and learn how to kill. The Palestinian Authority simply sees this payment as its sort of control over the Palestinian population. If they stop paying these funds, they will lose any authority. They will lose any support. They will lose the people. And the Palestinian Authority is doing basically what Hamas is doing, the terrorist organization in Gaza that controls Gaza and Gaza’s government in Gaza. They give their prisoners funds. They pay stipends to their prisoners and their families who went and lost people bombing themselves. They can’t really leave the market, leave the area just to Hamas, otherwise people will go and be loyal to Hamas. There is competition between the Palestinian Authority, which is headed by the PLO, and Hamas, which is a terrorist organization which controls the Gaza Strip—which complicates the situation. Therefore, talking about it, as President Trump is doing, will not get the job done.”
President Donald Trump, in his White House meeting with Palestinian Authority leader Mahmoud Abbas per White House press secretary Sean Spicer’s readout of the meeting, pressed Abbas on the payments to the terrorists.
“President Trump raised his concerns about payments to Palestinian prisoners in Israeli jails who have committed terrorist acts, and to their families, and emphasized the need to resolve this issue,” the White House readout from Spicer’s office read. White House sources tell Breitbart News that Spicer was instrumental in raising this issue with President Trump ahead of that Abbas meeting, providing the president with key information about the issue of Palestinian payments to terrorist and terrorists’ families.
In a follow-up meeting in Israel between Trump and Abbas during President Trump’s just-wrapped foreign trip, Trump was reportedly furious with Abbas after learning that Abbas apparently misled him in the Washington, D.C., White House meeting.
“You tricked me in Washington,” Trump reportedly said to Abbas behind closed doors in Israel, per an Israeli television station.
On Monday, Abbas confidante Ahmad Majdalani told the Jerusalem Post that the reports of a heated meeting with Trump are “a total fabrication and a lie.”
Netanyahu has also bashed Abbas for inaccurately claiming Palestinians promote peace.
“I heard President Abbas yesterday say that the Palestinians teach their children peace,” Netanyahu said. “Unfortunately, that’s not true. They name their schools after mass murderers of Israelis and they pay terrorists.”
Darshan-Leitner said that for President Trump to extract real action on this front and make progress toward peace, real action must happen—and that starts with the Taylor Force Act.
“There must be an act to be taken,” she said. “There must be more than just simple words, more than just an idea. We all know that the Palestinian Authority is paying this money. We all know, a few years ago they removed themselves from these payments asking the PLO to go make these payments, not the Palestinian Authority, so Mahmoud Abbas can come to President Trump and say, ‘listen, it’s not me. I was paying more. It’s the PLO.’ But let us not forget that Mahmoud Abbas is the head of the PLO in addition to his position as the head of the Palestinian Authority. So, to make a long story short, the Palestinian Authority will not halt these payments, and if President Trump is not going to take a serious step, they will just keep paying this money that induces and incites more terror attacks against civilians.”
She added that while there is widespread support for the Taylor Force Act in both chambers of the GOP-controlled U.S. congress, “there is no guarantee that it would pass.”
“Therefore there must be a push—listeners of your radio show must call up their elected representatives and urge them to push to get this law passed,” Darshan-Leitner said. “The State Department always objected to any deduction to the Palestinian Authority, to any prevention of ‘aid’ to the Palestinian Authority. The Palestinians always have to get their money. The United States is always one of the largest providers of the Palestinian Authority’s finances. They pay a large amount of their budget and therefore they have great leverage on the Palestinian Authority, but it’s not going to get done if there won’t be a public support and public urge to pass this law. So the listeners, the American citizens who care about civilian life, who care about human rights, who care about the life of Israelis and Americans in Israel have to push for this law to pass by urging their representatives to make it happen.”
Representatives for House Speaker Paul Ryan have not responded to requests for comment when asked why Ryan has not yet held a vote on this bill when there is clear bipartisan support for the legislation and it would easily pass the House of Representatives at this time, per Breitbart News sources on the Hill. The White House did not have a comment when asked about this bill or about the Israeli news reports on Trump’s reportedly heated meeting with Abbas in Israel.
LISTEN TO NITSANA DARSHAN-LEITNER OF ISRAEL LAW CENTER ON BREITBART NEWS DAILY: