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Commotion: Biden Administration Funding Plans

Layne Radlauer Layne Radlauer
24th May 2021
Commotion: Biden Administration Funding Plans
The funding plans have not yet been solidified (Getty Images).

The Claim

President Joe Biden plans to give more funding to the Israeli government than to fighting climate change.

Emerging story

Stephen Stemler, cofounder of Security Policy Reform Institute, published an article on Substack contrasting President Biden’s funding for climate change versus funding for Israel’s military.

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Funding Israel’s military is especially controversial at the moment, due to the Israel/Palestine crisis. Many people on social media, especially progressives, have shared Stemler’s article.

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Misbar’s Analysis

Misbar's investigation found that Stemler’s article takes information from a preview of Biden’s request for discretionary funding. It lacks detailed figures, but indicates what the president intends on spending. The request says that the U.S. intends on fulfilling its preexisting foreign aid obligation, specifically mentioning Israel. Stemler correlates this with the Memorandum of Understanding Reached with Israel, former President Obama’s ten-year deal with Israel that ensures $3.8 billion in yearly funding for the Israeli military.

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However, Stemler’s numbers are an oversimplification of Biden’s discretionary fund request. The request includes diplomatic efforts, such as brokering new agreements between Israel and Palestine. Moreover, the request specifically argues for a “two-state solution” and providing humanitarian aid to Palestinians. It does state that Biden will support Israel, but it says nothing of supporting the military.

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It’s currently unknown what Biden plans to do with the yearly military funding planned for Israel. The request does say that Biden intends on fulfilling preexisting obligations, but it was made in April, while the recent violence took place largely in May.

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There will probably be further developments in Biden’s foreign policy approach to Israel as well as his money dedicated to fighting climate change. A ceasefire agreement between Israel and Hamas took place on May 20.

At time of writing, however, it’s too soon to make assumptions based off of vague funding requests.

Misbar’s Classification


Misbar’s Sources

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