American syndicated columnist Edwin Black, who provided an overview of his latest book, "Financing the Flames: How Tax-Exempt and Public Money Fuel a Culture of Confrontation and Terror in Israel."
Black, the son of Holocaust survivors who "has been in the human rights movement for nearly half a century," is not a right-winger. This is probably why Knesset members from a cross section of parties showed up, however briefly, to pay their respects. It also helps to explain the willingness of the British European parliaments to hear him out and take him seriously earlier this month, prior to his arrival in Israel.
He painted a chilling picture of the money trail, leading from the likes of George Soros, via "human rights" organizations engaged in a concerted effort to undermine Israel, and smack into the pockets of Palestinians who kill Jews.
Yes, he said, "A Palestinian can go from being a nobody to a somebody..., from rags to riches, just by blowing up a bus [in Israel] or breaking into a house and slitting the throats of some young [Israeli] children. As soon as he gets sentenced, he [begins to receive] a PA salary. It could be a few hundred dollars a month for a short sentence ... and up to several thousands of dollars a month for maybe killing 20 to 30 people and getting a 30-year sentence."
Nor is jail time a deterrent. "Nobody believes they're going to serve [a full] sentence," he said, "because they are going to be part of the next prisoner release, or of the next discussion even to have a discussion about a prisoner release."
This travesty is supervised by the Palestinian Prisoners Ministry and written into PA legislation. The law determines an ascending pay scale for terrorists: The more the carnage and the longer the prison term, the higher the salary.
According to Black, "This takes up $5 million to $7 million a month -- approximately six percent -- of the PA budget. If you add in the other payments [to terrorists] for weddings, social events, special bonuses, academic scholarships, it comes to 16% of the Palestinian budget. And where does the money come from? From American and European taxpayers."
Until the blood-for-money law is rescinded, he said, "There can be no peace between Palestinians and Israelis.