Jewish attorneys plan to file a class action civil suit in the United States
against South African jurist Richard Goldstone next week.
The move comes
in the aftermath of an opinion piece Goldstone published in the Washington Post
last week, in which he stated that he had erroneously accused Israel of
internationally targeting innocent civilians in Gaza in a report he submitted on
the matter to the United Nations in 2009.
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The report accuses Israel of
possible war crimes and crimes against humanity. It suggests that the UN
Security Council consider referring the matter to the International Criminal
Court in The Hague.
MK Danny Danon (Likud), who is visiting the United
States, initiated the push for the lawsuit. During his US visit, he met with a
group of attorneys who are interested in pursuing the case on a voluntary
According to the Danon’s office, the suit will be submitted to the
US District Court for the Southern District of New York in Manhattan by attorney
In the civil suit, filed as a class action complaint, the
plaintiff says that he and others were “victims of libel by and through
allegations and distortions publicly stated in the report on the State of
Israel’s military actions during” the IDF’s offensive against Hamas in the Gaza
Strip during the winter of 2008–2009.
Both Danon and MK Ronit Tirosh
(Kadima) are listed as parties to the suit, which asks that the case be heard by
a jury, and demands both an official apology as well as symbolic compensation to
be paid to the State of Israel.
Danon said he plans to file a similar
suit in Israel against Goldstone, which would go into effect should the judge
“The Goldstone Report was a 2010 model of the blood libel,”
said Danon, who is the chairman of the Knesset’s Immigration, Absorption and
Diaspora Affairs Committee.
“The distorted picture of the State of Israel
that Goldstone generated harmed, harms and will continue to harm Israel and her
citizens for decades. A public apology in any state may help to reduce the
damage that was caused,” Danon said.