Plans to Invest $10 Million in Israel Bonds,Angering Arab-Americans
17 June 2002
SPRINGFIELD, Ill. -- In a move that has angered some Arab-Americans,
the state plans to invest $10 million in Israel bonds, the state
treasurer's office said.
The move was made possible by legislation signed into law last
week that allows state investment in the securities of foreign governments,
as long as the governments involved have never defaulted on their
"This is one more tool to help our state to manage its resources
wisely," said Rep. Jeff Schoenberg, a Democrat from Evanston
who co-sponsored the bill.
"But more importantly," added Schoenberg, "it sends
an unmistakably clear message of support for the state of Israel,
and this legislation is one important way to strengthen that relationship
at a very critical time."
Some are not happy with the investment.
"They're saying to Arab-Americans and Muslims in Illinois
that you don't count and we're going to send taxpayers' money to
support the terrible things Israel is doing to the Palestinian people,"
said Rafeeq Jaber, president of the Islamic Association for Palestine
in Palos Hills.
Fifteen other states invest in Israel bonds.