Bill Would Stop U.S. Aid to Middle-Eastern Terrorist Cells
As the United States government announces it’s sending more troops to war-torn Syria in order to support rebel militias — the same tactics used in Afghanistan in the early 1980s — U.S. lawmakers are now pushing a bill that would stop the aid to rebels acting in the Middle East completely.
If a private U.S. citizen decides to send money, weapons, or any kind of support to al Qaeda or members of ISIS, the congresswoman behind the bill told the House on Thursday, he will be “thrown in jail.” In spite of the laws, the U.S. government continues to use taxpayer money to do just that, helping “allies and partners of [al Qaeda], ISIL, Jabhat Fateh al Sham and other terrorist groups with money, weapons, and intelligence support.”
If the bill becomes law, the U.S. practice of assisting extremist groups directly or indirectly would be made illegal.
Other nations found to be involved in aiding al Qaeda, ISIS, or the highly lethal Jabhat Fateh al-Sham (formerly known as Al-Nusra Front) would also suffer the consequences if the bill passes.
The piece of legislation would also require the Director of National Intelligence (DNI) to offer Congress a list of individuals, nations, or terrorist organizations implicated in this matter.
By aiding groups such as Fursan al Haqq, legislators argued, the U.S. government is aiding al Qaeda, whose members are participating in the offensive against a foreign government alongside the Syrian rebels.
With this bill, congressmen hope to simply force the government to abide by the same rules being applied to citizens. A notion often lost on the hundreds of lawmakers lurking the Capitol building.
Regardless of where you stand on the foreign policy subject, it’s important to note that the current U.S. policy in the Middle East is extremely similar to the policy applied in Afghanistan. In the early 1980s, the federal government boosted its aid to rebels in the region fighting the Soviet Union. As many may still not know, this aid may have played an important role in supporting and helping to train terrorists in the region who went on to help create al Qaeda.
The very notion that the U.S. government is wisely using taxpayer money to veto the rebels being now supported by America is hard to back up, especially when you take into consideration how inefficient bureaucracies are.
While it’s still early to know whether this bill will see the light of day, it’s important that these tough issues are being brought up and discussed broadly. After all, the same way domestic interventionist policies create unintended consequences, interventionist policies applied abroad will have the same effect.