corries-AP-670
Cindy and Craig Corrie, the parents of Rachel Corrie, a pro-Palestinian activist who was killed by an Israeli bulldozer in Gaza in 2003, sit during an interview with the Associated Press in Jerusalem, Aug 26, 2012. — Photo by AP

JERUSALEM: An Israeli court on Monday rejected a lawsuit brought against the military by the parents of Rachel Corrie, a US activist crushed to death in 2003 by an army bulldozer as she tried to block its path in the Gaza Strip, ruling the army was not at fault for her death.    

The bulldozer driver has said he didn't see 23-year-old Corrie, a pro-Palestinian activist who opposed the military's demolition of Palestinian homes.

The military deemed her March 2003 death to be accidental, but Corrie's parents were not satisfied by the army investigation and filed a civil lawsuit two years later.

Explaining the district court's ruling, judge Oded Gershon said Corrie ''put herself in a dangerous situation'' and called her death ''the result of an accident she brought upon herself''.

He said the military conducted a proper investigation, and rejected the Corrie family's request for a symbolic $1 in damages and legal expenses.

Corrie's parents, Craig and Cindy Corrie, did not speak immediately after the verdict, but clasped each other's hands.

Their lawyer, Hussein Abu Hussein, lamented the court's ruling, saying ''the verdict blames the victim''.

''While not surprising, this verdict is yet another example of where impunity has prevailed over accountability and fairness,'' he said.

''Rachel Corrie was killed while non-violently protesting home demolitions and injustice in Gaza, and today, this court has given its stamp of approval to flawed and illegal practices that failed to protect civilian life.''

The home demolitions were part of an unsuccessful campaign to halt hundreds of shooting and mortar attacks against soldiers and Jewish settlers in southern Gaza, along the border with Egypt.

On the day Rachel Corrie died, she and other activists had entered a closed military zone to protest the demolition policy.

According to the UN agency handling Palestinian refugees, the military had left more than 17,000 Gazans homeless in the four years after a Palestinian uprising against Israel erupted in September 2000. The demolitions drew international condemnation at the time.

Updated Aug 28, 2012 08:06am

Comments (Closed)


Cyrus Howell
Aug 28, 2012 08:30am
Honestly, what did the family expect? They want their daughter back? Well that is one thing. They don't want her to die for nothing. They want her memory honored. That's another. These kinds of cases do not set precedents. A damage award is all you can get out of it, not a pound of flesh. When a person files a lawsuit as plaintiff against a country how can they win when they are too emotional? In a federal court you sue for money, not for your rights according to procedural rules. The judge was right. The parents can't see it. They were fighting windmills.
Asim
Aug 28, 2012 05:45pm
John While the attrocities in the article deeply upset me, as a rare Pakistani who has had the opportunity to visit Israel, let me assure you that your quotes are not representative of majority of the learned people in Israel. They do not want the mess to go on. Every religion, from Hinduism, Islam and Christianity has such sermons. All religions claim superiority but all religions also teach tolerance. Which we all forget.
Dr Jamshed Khan
Aug 28, 2012 06:14pm
No surprise there...!
Ahmad Saleem Akhtar
Aug 28, 2012 09:20am
Corries were mistaken if they thought they would get justice. I quote a recent case where South African government rightly demanded to catagorise goods coming out of occupied west bank as just that i.e produce of occupied west bank. The Israeli government called in South African envoy and branded their move as racist and anti semitic; and guess what, not a word from the torch bearers of human rights, justice and civiilization, as always. God help the new world order. ,
JohnWV
Aug 28, 2012 09:49am
Would a Jewish protester behaving like Rachael Corrie have been crushed? This excerpt from Times of India, June 18, 2012, suggests not. RABBI OVADIA Rabbi Ovadia Yosef is the former Chief Rabbi of Israel and the spiritual leader of the Shas party Israels “kingmaker” party . In a sermon given on Saturday on laws concerning what non-Jews are permitted to do on Shabbat, Yosef said: "Goyim [non-Jews] were born only to serve us. Without that, they have no place in the world – only to serve the People of Israel. Why are gentiles needed? They will work, they will plow, they will reap. We will sit like an effendi and eat." According to Yosef, death has "no dominion" over non-Jews in Israel. "With gentiles, it will be like any person - they need to die, but [God] will give them longevity. Why? Imagine that one’s donkey would die, they’d lose their money. This is his servant... That’s why he gets a long life, to work well for this Jew.” MENACHEM BEGIN "Our race is the Master Race. We Jews are divine gods on this planet. We are as different from the inferior races as they are from insects. In fact, compared to our race, other races are beasts and animals, cattle at best. Other races are considered as human excrement. Our destiny is to rule over the inferior races. Our earthly kingdom will be ruled by our leader with a rod of iron. The masses will lick our feet and serve us as our slaves."
Seedoo
Aug 28, 2012 02:56pm
What we are doing in this country (Pakistan) to minorities is no different. Both Israel and Pakistan are headed toward the same fate which is self-destruction. In case of Israel, they have plenty of well educated people to steer them away from the path of destruction (may be), but in Pakistan, masses seem to put their collective foot on the gas peddle to speed us to our fate
Humanity
Aug 28, 2012 11:17am
All humans are equal to God !!
Cyrus Howell
Aug 28, 2012 08:43am
"He said the military conducted a proper investigation, and rejected the Corrie family’s request for a symbolic $1 in damages and legal expenses." The $1 is not symbolic. If you do not sue for money the case will not be heard, and will not be going down in the Annals of Legal Jurisprudence. The plaintiff must have a real and recognizable injury (in this case the loss of the daughter) and sue for damages. Otherwise a procedural error occurs and the case is dismissed. This was considered by the government lawyers a "nuisance suit". It was going nowhere.
Tariq
Aug 29, 2012 05:16am
Let say, if a isreali citizen was crushed somewhere in the USA, isreali government would have raised hell and officials related to the incident would have either been fired or even tried.