2016-03-02 / Editorial

Iran’s support of Palestinian terrorism must be stopped

Flush with cash that has been freed up by the historic nuclear deal, Iran is back in the business of funding Palestinian terrorists.

This is one of those times when being able to say “I told you so” does not improve the situation. And yet, this was a major reason why Israel and its supporters were adamantly against the plan to lift sanctions against Iran in exchange for the dismantlement of the Middle Eastern country’s nuclear program.

Tehran’s new cash-incentive plan provides $7,000 to families of “martyrs of the intifada in occupied Jerusalem,” as well as “$30,000 to every family whose home the occupation has demolished for the participation of one of its sons.”

Mohammad Fathali, Iran’s ambassador to Lebanon, made the announcement in Beirut in a conference with representatives of Israel’s sworn enemies, including Hamas, Islamic Jihad, as well as Lebanese Shiite militia Hezbollah. The development, less than a month after Iran gained access to an estimated $100 billion in frozen money, comes amid a wave of violence in Israel. Since October, knife, gun and car-ramming assaults have claimed the lives of 28 Israelis, as well as an American, a Sudanese and an Eritrean. In turn, 176 Palestinians have been killed by Israeli forces, most while carrying out attacks but others during clashes and demonstrations.

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu, under political pressure to halt the violence, has moved to expedite demolitions of alleged attackers’ homes as a deterrent.

“This shows again that Iran encourages terrorism,” said Israeli foreign ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon. “Following the conclusion of the nuclear agreement (with world powers), Iran remains a major player in international terrorism,” he added.

In addition, Israel’s Ambassador to the UN Danny Danon sent a letter to Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon demanding that he condemn the announcement and “cut off the flow of Iranian terror money.” It’s hard to imagine the U.N. will take any decisive action but he’s absolutely right: for there to be calm in the region, Iran’s support of terrorism must be stopped immediately. .

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