Corrie - Peace Activist, Victim of Israel Whitewash Or Islamic
Jihad Propaganda Tool?
activists" do not carry automatic weapons.
Israel News Agency
Israel --- September 1, 2012 ... Part of the following was communicated
by the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs to the Israel News
Hamas, the PA or an Israeli living in Sderot, we would all agree
on one thing - the death of Rachel Corrie was tragic. Where we
disagree is that a free and democratic court in Haifa, Israel
believes that this accident never would have happened had the
ISM - International Solidarity Movement not encouraged activity,
in a war-zone, that was risky to the point of life-endangering.
District Court delivered its findings in the Rachel Corrie case
on 28 August 2012. The decision settled a civil lawsuit brought
by her American family in which they charged that Israel was responsible
for the 2003 death of Corrie in Gaza.
Gershon found for the State of Israel, Ministry of Defense, ruling
that there was no basis to claims that Israel was responsible
for the intentional or negligent death of US born peace activist
decision of the Israeli court illustrated democracy in action.
Israel did not have to open, hear and decide on this case. The
decision was given after extensive testimony and investigation
of the accident by experts on both sides. The District Court of
Haifa is a respected component of Israel's highly independent
judiciary, which in the past has not hesitated to find against
the IDF or the State of Israel.
an American citizen from Olympia, Washington, died tragically
on 16 March 2003 in the Gaza Strip. Corrie was a member of the
International Solidarity Movement (ISM), an anti-Israel organization
whose members engage in direct confrontation with Israeli troops
in the West Bank and Gaza, disrupting their operations on a regular
The ISM has
been directly linked to Islamic terror organizations. Huwaida
Arraf, an ISM founder was recorded at two national conferences
on two occasions admitted that the ISM works with terrorist groups
like Islamic Jihad, the PFLP and Hamas.
course of one of these PR demonstrations, Corrie was fatally injured
by the shovel of an Israeli army bulldozer leveling the ground
in the Philadelphi Corridor area of Gaza.
exonerated the State of Israel from any civil responsibility in
As the judge
found, while a terrible tragedy, the death of Rachel Corrie was
an accident that cannot be blamed on the IDF.
responsibility for the tragedy can be assigned. It lies solely
with the organizers of the ISM, who sent a young American woman
into a battle zone and encouraged her to engage in highly dangerous
in the Gaza Strip on behalf of the ISM at the height of the Second
Intifada. That Palestinian-led organization uses foreign nationals
as bait, deliberately placing them in volatile situations certain
in the knowledge that Israel will be blamed if they are subsequently
injured or killed.
In an interview
the day Corrie died, Thom Saffold, a founder of the ISM, said:
"It's possible they (the protesters) were not as disciplined
as we would have liked. But we're like a peace army. Generals
send young men and women off to operations, and some die."
be noted that the ISM is not a peaceful organization and its members
should not be termed "peace activists."
the ISM actively have supported terrorists and interfere in legitimate
defensive activities of the IDF. In 2002, the ISM attempted to
assist the wanted terrorists who seized the Church of the Nativity
in Bethlehem, desecrating this holy site. A senior Islamic Jihad
terrorist, Shadi Sukiya, was hiding in the Jenin ISM office -
with the assistance of ISM activists - when he was arrested in
March 2003. Richard David Hupper, an ISM member, gave USD 20,000
to the internationally recognized terrorist organization Hamas
while working for the ISM in Israel, resulting in his 2008 conviction
by a US federal court.
found that on the day of the accident the bulldozer was engaged
in the military operational task of clearing the land in a dangerous
area which posed a significant risk. These actions were designed
to prevent acts of terror and hostility. The judge declared that
the bulldozer's leveling operation was "a war-related action"
as defined by Israeli law, and therefore the state bears no responsibility
for the damages inflicted on the plaintiffs.
to the law, which is similar in many democratic states including
the US, that settled the case and there was no legal need to discuss
the cause of action. However, given the contentious nature of
the case, the judge decided to go beyond the legal requirements
and examine the merits of the claims made by the Corrie family
and their supporters.
The ISM has
prosecuted a long-term campaign against Israel in the Corrie matter.
Among the claims made by these activists, and repeated in the
civil suit, was that the bulldozer driver deliberately ran over
The day of
the accident, Corrie and other ISM members risked themselves by
directly interfering in the IDF bulldozer activities, blocking
their paths with their bodies. The IDF soldiers warned off the
activists repeatedly and took great care to avoid the foreigners,
changing their place of operations time after time.
involved in the accident was a DR9, a very large vehicle. The
field of vision of the DR9 is extremely limited, not least due
to the heavy shielding necessitated by attacks on bulldozer drivers.
When the involved bulldozer turned and pushed a large pile of
debris, Corrie was kneeling on the ground and was in a blind spot
of the operator's field of vision, behind the bulldozer's shovel
and the pile of dirt. Accordingly, as the judge found, there was
no way in which the bulldozer driver could have seen Corrie.
based his decision not only on evidence provided by the state,
but also on an expert testifying on behalf of the Corrie family.
This expert determined that the driver could not and did not see
Rachel Corrie due to the nature of the vehicle he was operating.
Based on the
evidence provided by four separate experts including the
one hired by the Corrie family the judge found, this was
a very regrettable accident but not a deliberate action. It was
determined that that Corrie had risked her own life by placing
herself in a dangerous situation, kneeling in front of a bulldozer
whose driver could not see her. The judge also unequivocally determined
that there is no basis to the claim of the plaintiffs that the
bulldozer driver negligently caused the death of Corrie.
In an attempt
to gain more sympathy to their cause, the ISM activists also falsely
claimed that the bulldozer was attempting to destroy the house
of a local Palestinian dentist.
found that the mission of the IDF that day was confined to exposing
the ground in a section of the Philadelphi Corridor. Leveling
the ground and clearing it of shrubbery was necessary to expose
hiding places exploited by terrorists, who used them to plant
explosive devices and as camouflage for attacks.
As the judge
stated in his judgment: "The mission was not, in any manner,
intended to destroy houses."
actions that day were necessary to prevented hostile activities
and acts of terrorism. In the relevant period during the Second
Intifada, a great deal of terrorist activity was concentrated
in the Philadelphi Corridor. Just about an hour before the incident,
a hand grenade had been thrown at IDF forces there.
From the start
of the Intifada in September 2000 and until the day of the accident
in March 2003, nearly 6,000 grenades had been thrown at IDF soldiers,
there were 1,400 attempted sniper attacks, 150 explosive devices
had been planted and 40 mortar bombs launched - and all in the
was the center of smuggling activities, with numerous tunnels
used to bring terrorists and weapons from the Egyptian town of
Rafah into the Gaza Strip. In addition there had been unending
attempts to kidnap Israeli soldiers. As a result of the aforementioned
attacks, many Israelis had been killed or injured.
When the ISM
decided to target the ground leveling operation, it knew that
it was operating in a closed military zone. Civilians are prohibited
from entering these zones and IDF soldiers made every effort to
distance the anti-Israel activists from the area.
the United States Government had just published (16 March 2003)
a travel advisory warning US citizens from travel to the Gaza
comprehensive and transparent trial concluded, after examining
extensive expert testimony, that Israel was not responsible for
Rachel Corrie's death. The events of that day were scrutinized
in detail and no evidence was found that supported the plaintiff's
version of events.
of Rachel Corrie was a tragic accident; however this accident
never would have happened had the ISM not encouraged activity
- in a war-zone - that was risky to the point of life-endangering.
was not murdered by the IDF. She was no hero. She was not helping
the peace process by allowing Islamic terror organizations to
smuggle weapons and explosives into Israel to murder Israeli civilians.
was used as a propaganda tool. No different than a doctored photoshopped
picture, words of Palestinians starving in a food saturated Gaza
or a romantic concept called the Flotilla to break the seige of
Gaza, as if Gaza did not have an Egyptian border.
the victim of multi-million dollar PR hate campaign against Israel.
A campaign that serves such dictators as Iran President Mahmoud
Ahmadinejad and Syria President Bashar Assad who embrace a false
spin of the Holocaust, of nuclear weapons and of Palestinians
suffering to deflect from their own severe internal problems of
poverty and a total lack of human rights.
is no Palestinian Israel conflict. Arab Israelis enjoy democracy,
prosperity and equal human rights in Israel.
died in a war of Islamic Jihad (holy war against Jews and Christians)
She joined the thousands who were murdered in the 9/11 terror
attacks on New York and Washington and the 7/7 London terror bombings.
The only distinction for a truly naive Corrie was that she was
fighting on the side of terrorism - not democracy.
relations, public affairs and crisis communications to SEO, social
cross-cultural training, Joel Leyden serves both governmental
and commercial organizations.
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