The Obama administration is reportedly mulling an intervention next week in a civil lawsuit involving the Palestinian leadership and American victims of Palestinian terror.
Guess which party the administration is siding with?
The lawsuit was filed over a series of bombings and shootings in or around Jerusalem that killed dozens of U.S. citizens during the second Palestinian intifada a decade ago.
The case was delayed for years while Palestinian lawyers tried to challenge the American court’s jurisdiction, but last February the families won a $218.5 million judgment after a seven-week trial in a Manhattan federal court. The jury found that the PLO and Palestinian Authority were responsible for a string of attacks from 2001 to 2004 that killed 33 and injured hundreds.
Unfortunately for the cash-strapped Palestinians, a 1992 law requires damages in cases such as these to be tripled with interest on the award, pushing it to as much as $1.1 billion.
The judgment amounts to nearly a third of the Palestinian Authority’s annual operating budget.
Palestinian leadership say they are not responsible “for the actions of individuals” who killed or wounded Americans, and are appealing the decision.
The Obama administration has reportedly signaled that it will intervene on behalf of the Palestinians in this case over U.S. citizens.
Via Fox News:
Late last month, the Department of Justice, which had previously not been involved in the 11-year-old case, informed the court it was considering filing a “statement of interest” in the case by Aug. 10, but officials would not elaborate. A source said the Department of Justice was working with the State Department on the matter.
“As the filing states, the United States is considering whether to submit a Statement of Interest in the [Sokolow v. Palestine Liberation Organization] matter,” a DOJ spokeswoman told FoxNews.com. “Any filing would be made on behalf of the United States, not on behalf of any other party.”
The Palestinian leadership would not have to pay the award unless it is upheld on appeal, but U.S. District Judge George Daniels said he may require the Palestinians to post bond while the case works its way through the process to show “some meaningful demonstration that the defendant is ready and willing to pay the judgment.”“An administration which claims to be fighting terror is planning to weigh in favor of the terrorists,” Yalowitz told FoxNews.com. “If our government actually came in favor of convicted terrorists, it would be a really sorry statement about the way our government treats terror.”
Note that this is the same administration that is apparently considering charges against a Navy officer for defending himself and other military personnel during a terrorist attack on the Navy Operational Support Center in Chattanooga, TN, last month.
It is the same administration that traded five dangerous Taliban commanders for one pot-addled Army deserter in the spring of 2014.
It is the same administration that sides with the Islamist government of Turkey over the secular Kurds who are fighting the ISIS terrorists.
John Bolton, former U.S. Ambassador to the United Nations and a Fox News contributor, said the administration would be wrong to assert a diplomatic role in the case.
“Palestine is not a state, and is therefore, not entitled to be treated like a state,” Bolton told Fox News. “It does not enjoy sovereign immunity and it would be wrong for the United States government to argue otherwise in federal court.”
In a press conference, Palestinian legislator and activist Hanan Ashrawi said neither the Palestinian Authority (PA) nor the Palestinian Liberation Organization (PLO) was to blame for the attacks.
But Mark Regev, an Israeli government spokesman, said that the jury’s decision sent a “clear message” to the Palestinian leadership to cease its support of terrorism and “break its pact with Hamas.”
In June of 2014, Mahmoud Abbas’ Fatah/Palestinian Authority (PA) formed a unity government with the Hamas terror organization.
Hamas, a U.S.- and EU-recognized terrorist group, calls in its Charter for the global murder of Jews (Article 7) and the destruction of Israel (Article 15), while its leaders have called for demise of the U.S. and the murder of Americans.
Despite this, within two days, the Obama Administration said that it would continue to financially aid the PA.