Sunday, March 29, 2009

Nachshon Waxman: Iran Must pay

Nachson's father Mordechai watches Hamas tape
Nachson's father Mordechai watches Hamas tape
Israel News Photo: Flash 90

US Court Orders Iran to Pay Waxman Family $25 Million

by Tzvi Ben Gedalyahu

( A United States federal court issued a verdict on Friday ordering Iran to pay $25 million to the family of Nachshon Waxman, the IDF soldier who Hamas terrorists kidnapped and executed while the entire country of Israel united to say Psalms for his rescue.

Waxman, a U.S. citizen who was born in Jerusalem, was 19 years old when terrorists kidnapped him. The terrorists disguised themselves as orthodox Jews in order to lure the soldier into their vehicle while he was hitchhiking near Ben Gurion Airport.

The Waxman family charged that Iran was an accessory to the murder because of its funding of the terrorist organization. The judgment against Tehran was issued after the country refused to respond to the lawsuit.

"The financial support, tactical training and political direction that Iran provided to Hamas proximately caused the abduction and execution of Nachshon," U.S. District Judge Ricardo Urbina concluded.

Read the rest of that news here.

Nachshon Waxman was off duty when Hamas operatives kidnapped him in October 1994. In the aftermath, 50,000 Israelis gathered at the Western Wall along with Waxman's parents, Esther and Yehuda, for a prayer vigil, countless others prayed at home. Sadly, Waxman was killed, three days after his abduction, when an IDF rescue attempt went awry. In the many terrorist attacks on Israel in the years since, Waxman's murder has become almost forgotten.

A dual citizen of Israel and the United States, Wachsman was raised in Jerusalem. He is the third of seven sons born to an Israeli father and a mother who was born in a German displaced persons camp and immigrated to Israel from Brooklyn.[1] Wachsman volunteered for an elite commando unit of the Golani Brigade, serving in the Orev Golani. Kidnapping At home on a leave, Wachman was instructed by the military to attend a one-day training course in northern Israel. He left Saturday night after the Sabbath and told his parents he would return Sunday night, October 9. He was last seen by a friend who reported that, after completing the training, Wachsman had been dropped off at the Bnai Atarot junction, a highly populated area in central Israel, where he could either catch a bus or hitchhike, a common practice by Israeli soldiers, to Jerusalem....

On Tuesday 11 October a videotape was broadcast showing Wachsman, with hands and feet bound, before a keffiyeh-covered militant, displaying the soldier's identity card. After the militant recited the hostage's home address and identity number, Wachsman spoke with the armed militant behind him: "The group from Hamas kidnapped me. They are demanding the release of Sheikh Ahmed Yassin and another 200 from Israeli prison. If their demands are not met, they will execute me on Friday at 8 P.M." Nachshon's parents personally appealed to world leaders, including then Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin, American President Bill Clinton, and Muslim religious leaders, who urged Hamas to release the soldier. On Thursday night, with 24 hours until the ultimatum, prayer vigils were held in many places. Over 100,000 people representing all religious, political, and social segments of the Israeli population gathered at the Western Wall. Responding to a request by Esther Wachsman, Nachshon’s mother, many women lit an extra Sabbath candle for her son. (read more background here.)

As we all wait for the safe release of Gilad Shalit, an American court lays the blame for Nachson's fate squarely with the Iranians. I am on record as believing that no amount of money can ever compensate a mother for the loss of a child. Do I think Iran will ever pay this family? Hardly, but with this symbolic, significant ruling, Iran IS - yet again - called to account.

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