U.S. Economic Aid for the West Bank and Gaza

ID-78-35: Published: Jul 5, 1978. Publicly Released: Jul 5, 1978.

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The Agency for International Development (AID) program in the Israeli-occupied West Bank and Gaza grew out of a desire to demonstrate U.S. concern for the welfare of the Palestinians and has been part of U.S. efforts to promote peace in the Middle East. In accordance with congressional intent, U.S. assistance for the West Bank and Gaza has been carried out through U.S. voluntary agencies. These agencies received grants totaling $1 million in fiscal year 1975, $1.6 million in 1976; and $3.5 million in 1977. Direct involvement by AID has been limited, and there is no AID mission in the area.

Because of political uncertainties and limitations, program objectives have not been clearly formulated, but guidelines for the voluntary agencies have stressed that projects should be development oriented rather than strictly relief or welfare oriented. Voluntary agency programs have been directed toward three functional areas: vocational training and education, health care, and community development. Although individual projects have been beneficial, they currently meet only specific, narrowly defined needs. This approach has not ensured that the most urgent socioeconomic needs are being met, but limited observations indicate that the voluntary agencies are managing and administering their programs effectively.

Recommendation for Executive Action

  1. Status: Closed

    Comments: Please call 202/512-6100 for additional information.

    Recommendation: The Administrator, AID, should: (1) identify the important socioeconomic needs of the area; (2) specify U.S. humanitarian and development interests and objectives; and (3) develop programs and an overall strategy for meeting assistance needs and fulfilling U.S. objectives.

    Agency Affected:

 

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