Judge Orders Destruction of Memo Linking Palestinian Authority to Suicide Attack
by Zach Pontz
A United States federal judge has ordered a memo linking the Palestinian Authority to a suicide bombing that killed two teen American citizens in Israel returned or destroyed.
According to the New York Post, the document — accidentally handed over to lawyers suing the authority for $300 million on behalf of the teens’ parents — reveals a “close relationship” between the bomber and a captain in the Palestinian Authority security forces who planned the terror attack.
The two-page memo, written in April 2012 by Maj. Ziad Abu Hamid of the authority’s General Intelligence Service, was mistakenly handed over in a Sept. 12 deposition because it was folded up in the bottom of an envelope that held unrelated documents.
Scott Shatsky, 60, the Brooklyn-born father of one victim, told the Post the decision was “incomprehensible.”
“It makes me feel that justice is not being done,” the Brighton Beach native said. “Maybe I’m missing something, but to me it’s just outrageous.”
The plaintiffs’ lawyers have yet to comply with the judge’s order and last week asked him to stay it pending appeal.
“Defendants’ illegitimate cover-up efforts must not be permitted with impunity,” lawyers David Schoen and Robert Tolchin wrote.
Court papers say the memo links Sadeq Hafez, an operative for the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine terror group, to Raed Nazal, “who was both a salaried officer in the PA’s security services and a leader of the PFLP cell in Qalqilya,” a Palestinian Arab city in the West Bank.
On Feb. 16, 2002, Hafez blew himself up in a packed pizzeria in the Israeli settlement of Karnei Shomron, killing three teens, including Keren Shatsky, 15, and Rachel Thaler, 16.