For years, the international community has been funneling vast sums to the Palestinian Authority, hoping for a magical transformation leading to economic growth, self-sufficiency, and even peace. It is clear that the aid has fueled corruption and terror, but very little development. Many donor countries have demanded that Hamas renounce violence and accept Israel’s right to exist as a condition for continued aid. These terms were rejected by Hamas leaders who realize that many donors are reluctant to implement their conditions.
Some European diplomats have discussed routing development funds through non-governmental organizations (NGOs) involved in human rights and humanitarian work. Unfortunately, this solution is based on wishful thinking. The hundreds of NGOs that work with the Palestinians in the region are part of the problem, having become parties to the conflict, and not neutral engines of development. Many of the international “superpower” NGOs such as Christian Aid, World Vision, War on Want, Human Rights Watch, and Amnesty International have used their multimillion-dollar budgets on political campaigns that repeat the Palestinian version of history.