The Biden administration approved a controversial grant to the Palestinian Territories to promote diversity, equity and inclusion (DEI) in that region’s programs.
The $100,000 grant will be available for organizations in the West Bank and Gaza Strip in part to aid with DEI and “accessibility.”
The federal government said that they would accept applications from Palestinian organizations for a number of causes, including entrepreneurship and the arts.
Furthermore, the program’s description reads that there will be “special consideration” for “proposals that demonstrate how the program advances diversity, equity, inclusion and/or accessibility with respect to” a number of factors, including race and ethnicity.
US: To this day, we are giving foreign aid to Pakistan, Iraq, Palestine & even communist Cuba and China. All we are doing is paying off our enemies, when I'm the President we will stop giving money to countries that hate America: Nikki Haley pic.twitter.com/Ke3CswyDho
— ANI (@ANI) March 3, 2023
The move comes after the United States Office of Palestinian Affairs opened a new cultural exchange with the Middle Eastern territory calling for an improvement in “American-Palestinian relations and create greater opportunities for mutually beneficial partnership and cooperation.”
The effort intends to build “Palestinian institutions, both governmental and non-governmental, that effectively address the needs and aspirations of the Palestinian people.”
The funding also comes after the World Food Program announced that it would cut most of its funding for the territories.
The announcement also comes after a wave of attacks by Palestinian militants against Israel, sparking the most recent round of fighting.
Earlier this week, Israel eliminated three top members of Palestinian Islamic Jihad. Multiple militant groups are reportedly discussing possible retaliation measures.
The latest grant is not the only controversial one that the Biden White House sent overseas.
Foreign aid has been a major topic in Washington, especially as many fiscal conservatives criticize how it has been used.
For example, in 2018, Sen. Rand Paul (R-KY) praised former President Donald Trump for suspending more than $250 million in aid to Pakistan.
The Kentucky Republican wrote at the time that he could not “in good conscience look away as America crumbles at home, and politicians tax us to send the money to corrupt and duplicitous regimes abroad.”
Paul cited $34 billion in aid to the Asian nation since 2002. He said that this policy “is not putting America first.”