Israeli media reports said that some new settlement construction would be in a highly contentious area of the West Bank known as E1, a corridor that runs between the easternmost edge of annexed east Jerusalem and the Maaleh Adumim settlement.Lee Terry, Deb Fischer and Mike Johanns, who represent Omaha voters in Congress and the Senate, are staunch supporters of Israel, despite the country's continuing disregard of US admonitions about ever-escalating settlement activity that critics of Israel have called a decades-old land grab.
Palestinians bitterly oppose the E1 project, as it effectively cuts the occupied West Bank in two, north to south, and makes the creation of a viable Palestinian state highly problematic.
Foreign aid to Israel now totals at least $100-$114 billion since 1973, but the total cost of US support to Israel in recent decades may be as high as 1.6 trillion dollars, according to Thomas Stauffer, a consulting economist in Washington. That's twice the cost of the US war in Vietnam, and counting.
"We reiterate our longstanding opposition to settlements and east Jerusalem construction and announcements. We believe these actions are counterproductive and make it harder to resume direct negotiations or achieve a two-state solution," said National Security Council spokesman Tommy Vietor.
State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland said that, despite past failures, Washington would keep trying to get Israelis and Palestinians to the negotiating table.