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Why does the United States not hold back 100% of the aid it provides to Palestine? Does the aid money benefit some American companies?

Also, by holding back 50%, the damage to the relationship has already been done. In addition, some other countries have picked up a majority of the slack. So the Palestinians are not affected that much and don't have a strong incentive to sit at the table for peace talks.

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  • Official reason:

    The State Department said it was releasing the rest of the installment — $60 million — to prevent the agency from running out of cash by the end of the month and closing down. (source)

  • Other reasons:

    • If you cut 100%, you can't threaten to cut the remaining 50% (which is a viable option if you only cut 50%).

    • Some in USA believe that cutting all aid would be destabilizing:

      Haley wanted a complete cutoff in U.S. money until the Palestinians resumed peace talks with Israel that have been frozen for years. But Tillerson, Mattis and others argued that ending all assistance would exacerbate instability in the Mideast, notably in Jordan, a host to hundreds of thousands of Palestinian refugees and a crucial U.S. strategic partner.

  • Additionally, your assertion that "some other countries have picked up a majority of the slack" and "the Palestinians are not affected that much" is 100% false.

    USA cut its aid by $65M just for the first installment (and if they won't pay anymore this year, will have cut by $300M compared to last year).

    The largest contributor to increase funding so far seems to be Germany with $52.9M and Belgium, with a whopping $23M over 3 years (less than $8M/year). Seems rather far from "majority" of the slack.

  • What kind of strategic role does Jordan play for the US? And what agency would close down if the $60 million were not released (sorry, your link didn't work; it asks me to sign in)? – nk379 Jan 31 '18 at 20:18
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    @nk379 - these 2 seem like completely separate questions - probably worth just asking as questions on the site. – user4012 Jan 31 '18 at 20:19
  • @nk379 I believe "the agency" refers to United Nations Relief and Works Agency (UNRWA). – npostavs Feb 1 '18 at 1:38
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    Also the WH has made comments to the effect of 'were happy to bring back the 50% if you work with us' – David says Reinstate Monica Feb 1 '18 at 3:16
  • @nk379 regarding Jordan: since the US relationship with Turkey has become somewhat difficult (Israel, support for opposing factions in Syria, Gülen, Turkey + Russia), the US has pivoted to Jordan for some regional military operations. – janh Feb 1 '18 at 11:50

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