Jews are commanded to pursue justice—true justice.
“The wheels of justice turn slowly but grind exceeding fine”—so said Euripides as did Sun Tzu (“The wheels of justice grind slow but grind fine”) and Longfellow (“The mills of God grind slowly but they grind exceedingly small”).
When it comes to justice for Jews, we have often received precious little or been forced to wait for thousands of years for it.
Now, a stunning moment is upon us. After a decade of litigation, and after a seven week civil trial in a Manhattan federal court, a jury has found that the Palestinian Authority (PA) and the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) are liable for the deaths and injuries of ten American families plus the estates of four victims. These attacks took place on an Israeli street, at a crowded Israeli bus stop, inside an Israeli bus, and in a cafeteria at Hebrew University.
This decision, which of course can be appealed, nevertheless makes it crystal clear that the PLO and the PA are not “moderate,” “peaceful” groups but are, in fact, terrorist entities, just like Hamas and Hezbollah.
President Obama, the United Nations and the European Union believe that these two Palestinian groups are worthy of a state and are trustworthy as allies but a jury in federal court saw right through this and decided otherwise.
They awarded the victims and their families $218.5 million dollars, a sum that might be tripled under the U.S. Anti-Terrorism Act.
Israeli attorney, Nitsana Darshan-Leitner of the Shurat HaDin—The Israel Law Center—fought this battle from start to finish; attorney Kent A. Yalowitz of Arnold and Palmer was the Plaintiff’s attorney of record. Yalowitz has also defended the State of Israel in various cases including In re Holocaust Victim Asset Litigation, in which Israel appeared in connection with the distribution of a $1.2 billion settlement.
Last year, in Brooklyn, in a decision against the Arab Bank, a precedent was set in which a financial institution could be held liable for knowingly processing transactions for terrorists.
According to a New York lawyer, based on this verdict, “the true path to peace is not to continue demanding Israeli concessions but to stop the funding of terrorism by Iran, Qatar, and the Palestinian government itself. At the very least, the lesson is that governments that sponsor terrorism should pay a heavy monetary price for their acts. Further, while it remains to be seen whether the plaintiffs can actually collect on this judgment, the jury's finding of liability should echo throughout future peace negotiations, and should greatly impact the position of the United States as the facilitator Jonathan S. Tobin: “It’s time for President Obama to stop engaging in denial about Palestinian reality.”
of any future agreement.”
Or as Jonathan S. Tobin of Commentary writes: “It’s time for President Obama to stop engaging in denial about Palestinian reality.”
One of the defense lawyers tried—but failed—to convince the jury that only “the bad guys, the killers, the people who did this” should be punished, not the Palestinian Authority or the PLO, who should not be made to “pay for something they did not do.”
Oh, but they precisely paid for these attacks and the evidence was clear and copious and consisted of payroll records, testimony, and documents which proved that the terrorists were employed and compensated by the PA and the PLO and that salaries were paid to terrorists in Israeli jails as well as payments made to the families of human homicide bombs.
Hanan Ashrawi, made famous so long ago by Ted Koppell, and still a member of the PLO’s executive committee, told the jury that “we tried to prevent violence from all sides.”
She has always been a liar and has remained true to form.
The completely corrupt Palestinian organizations are brazenly pleading poverty. I would advise the American judges to check the private bank accounts of Arafat’s widow and of Mahmoud Abbas where they will find billions.
“Tzedek, tzedek tirdof” (Deuternomy 16:20)—"Justice, true Justice, shall you pursue”—both Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, her staff, and the American lawyers have done just that.