For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
Pro-Palestinian activists are launching a new round of anti-Israel lawsuits in European courts. The lawsuits, which exploit the legal principle of universal jurisdiction, are being used to harass current and former Israeli political and military leaders, with the twin aims of tying Israel's hands against Palestinian terror and delegitimizing the Jewish state.
Although so far none of the lawsuits filed against Israel in European courts has reached the stage of a trial in which Israeli leaders have appeared before a foreign judge, even short of actual prosecutions, pro-Palestinian activists have scored huge propaganda victories by charging Israeli officials with war crimes. This alone makes the pursuit of frivolous universal jurisdiction lawsuits a winning proposition for many activist groups.
On June 23, two Belgian lawyers, representing Palestinians, filed suit in Belgium against 14 Israeli officials on charges of war crimes allegedly committed during the Gaza War, a three-week armed conflict that took place in the Gaza Strip during the winter of 2008–2009. Those charged include Israeli opposition leader Tzipi Livni for her role as foreign minister during the war, former Israeli Prime Minister Ehud Olmert, Deputy Defense Minister Matan Vilnai, and other Israeli military and intelligence officials.
The 70-page lawsuit is based on a report by Judge Richard Goldstone, which claims that an Israeli attack on a mosque near the Jabalia refugee camp in the Gaza Strip killed 16 civilians, including women and children. The plaintiffs, who include one Palestinian-Belgian national and 13 Gaza Strip residents, were either wounded or lost relatives in the attack.
The Goldstone Report claims that Israel committed war crimes during the offensive, code-named Operation Cast Lead. The 575-page report calls for prosecuting Israeli officials in international courts should Israel refuse to conduct a credible investigation into its army's conduct during the war.
I visited Hevron in November 2000 after the outbreak of the Rosh Hashanah War to see what could be done to assist in the face of the growing daily attacks on the community. After returning to work for the community in the summer of 2001, a bond and a love was forged that grows to this day. My wife Melody and I merited to be married at Ma'arat HaMachpela and now host visitors from throughout the world every Shabbat as well as during the week. Our goal, "Time to come Home!"