On Saturday, The Associated Press reported:
President Joe Biden signed an order Friday to free $7 billion in Afghan assets now frozen in the U.S., splitting the money between humanitarian aid for poverty-stricken Afghanistan and a fund for Sept. 11 victims still seeking relief for the terror attacks that killed thousands and shocked the world.
No money would immediately be released. But Biden’s order calls for banks to provide $3.5 billion of the frozen amount to a trust fund for distribution through humanitarian groups for Afghan relief and basic needs. The other $3.5 billion would stay in the U.S. to finance payments from lawsuits by U.S. victims of terrorism that are still working their way through the courts.
International funding to Afghanistan was suspended and billions of dollars of the country’s assets abroad, mostly in the United States, were frozen after the Taliban took control of the country in August as the U.S. military withdrew.
The article concludes:
The United Nations last month issued an appeal for nearly $5 billion, its largest ever appeal for one country, estimating that nearly 90% of the country’s 38 million people were surviving below the poverty level of $1.90 a day. The U.N. also warned that upward of 1 million children risked starvation.
U.N. spokesman Stephane Dujarric said Friday night that it is “encouraged” by Biden’s executive order.
“”It’s also important to reiterate that humanitarian assistance alone will be insufficient to meet the tremendous needs of Afghan women and men and children over the long term, and it is critical that the Afghan economy is able to restart in order for these needs of the Afghan people to be met with a sustainable and meaningful manner,” Dujarric said.
David Miliband, head of the International Rescue Committee, on Wednesday urged release of the funds to prevent famine.
“The humanitarian community did not choose the government, but that is no excuse to punish the people, and there is a middle course — to help the Afghan people without embracing the new government,” Miliband said at a Senate Judiciary subcommittee hearing on the matter.
I hate to be cynical (but I’m good at it), but does anyone think that the money given to the Taliban will be used to improve the living conditions of the people living in Afghanistan? We only need to look at the Gaza Strip to see how humanitarian aid can be misused to buy weapons and build military infrastructure. All of that money should go to the victims of 9/11 and their families. Why are we funding terrorism?