Tough question. Whom do you believe, the terrorists or their accomplices?
After announcing a $6 billion ransom for 5 hostages, the Biden administration is claiming that the money, stored in Qatar, an ally of Iran, will only be used for “humanitarian purposes”.
Iran is denying that.
White House spokesperson John Kirby told reporters that the United States would have “full visibility” into where any released Iranian funds are directed and used. An estimated $6 billion in Iranian assets are now held in South Korea.
“Essentially, the funds can only be accessed for food, medicine, medical equipment that would not have a dual military use,” he said. “And there will be a rigorous process of due diligence and standards applied with input from the U.S. Treasury Department.”
I’m old enough that I remember when Kirby and the administration were promising the same thing in Afghanistan. Then the State Department decided it wouldn’t cooperate with the Afghanistan watchdog or let employees talk to investigators without a lawyer present.
So I’m sure we can trust these fine folks who have never blatantly lied to us before and never will again.
“This is a dishonst claim manufactured by bitter people. Iran will have full and direct access to its released assets, there will be no Qatari companies involved, Iranian banks will have full control, and they can purchase goods and services without any limitation or restriction,” a top advisor to the Iranian negotiating team tweeted.
No need to worry. Humanitarian aid never funds terrorism. Never, ever.
Between January 2012 and March 2018, USAID provided $2.6 billion in funding to public international organizations and an additional $2 billion to NGOs operating in Iraq and Syria. A partial audit by USAID’s Office of the Inspector General of funds given to public international organizations revealed that the agency provided nearly $700 million in awards without an adequate system in place to ensure that members of terrorist groups would not be beneficiaries. As of January 2018, official investigations resulted in the blacklisting of several dozen individuals and organizations and the suspension of at least $239 million in program funds in the region.
Other recipients of American funding have run into difficulty identifying groups with ties to barred terrorist organizations. When such instances come to light — like World Vision’s payment of $125,000 to the Islamic Relief Agency in Sudan, a group with alleged ties to al-Qaeda — publicly available details are often murky.
In August 2016, Israeli prosecutors charged a manager of World Vision’s Gaza branch for allegedly funneling $43 million in funding over a period of six years to Hamas’s military wing.
. In 2010, the United Nations investigated the World Food Programme’s operations in Somalia following reports of corruption, piracy, and the diversion of food aid to al-Shabaab. The United Nations identified a food aid fraud scheme in which approximately 30 percent of food aid was diverted to local personnel employed by the World Food Programme, 10 percent went to the contracted ground transporter, and 5 to 10 percent went to al-Shabaab.
I’m sure the same “rigorous process of due diligence” used to release terrorists into the U.S. will be applied when it comes to sending money to an Islamic terrorist state through another Islamic terror state.