Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Distorting NIAC’s Court Defeat

May 28, 2013 1:35 am 0 comments

Media Matters Senior Foreign Policy Fellow, MJ Rosenberg. Photo: Pulse Media.

Last September, Seid Hassan Daioleslam, an American of Iranian origins, won a major court victory against the informal Iranian U.S. lobby in Washington. The decision legitimated Mr. Daioleslam’s investigative research that exposed the National Iranian American Council (NIAC) and its president, Trita Parsi, as lobbyists for the Iranian regime.

But on May 5 M.J. Rosenberg wrote an article that turns upside down the trial outcome and even the facts established in the case. This article points out Rosenberg’s many errors.

The drama began in 2007 when Mr. Daioleslam, editor of the Iranian American Forum, began to expose NIAC and Parsi’s lobbying campaign on behalf of the Iranian Regime, the world’s leading sponsor of Islamist terrorism. Seeking to “hit him hard,” NIAC and Parsi filed their defamation complaint against Mr. Daioleslam in 2008.

The Legal Project, an activity of the Middle East Forum, which seeks to protect the right of independent investigative journalists to report freely on Islamist terrorism, coordinated Mr. Daioleslam’s pro bono representation by Sidley Austin LLP (Sidley). Senior Litigation Partner Mr. Timothy Kapshandy served as the lead attorney in Mr. Daioleslam’s defense.

After over five years of litigation, the United States District Court for D.C. not only dismissed the suit against Seid Hassan Daioleslam but also ordered over $183,000 in sanction penalties against NIAC and Parsi for their “discovery abuses.”

Rosenberg works hard to portray this outcome as favorable to NIAC and Parsi, but he fails.

Rosenberg claims that “(a)t the end of this five-year process, no evidence was found to substantiate the accusation that NIAC was lobbying for the Iranian regime.” No: the documents produced during discovery, the pre-trial process where parties exchange information in preparation for trial, not only suggest that NIAC was created with the mission to lobby on behalf of the regime, but also suggest that Parsi had arguably been serving the Mullahs’ interest in the U.S. since as early as 1997.

Rosenberg bemoans the “tall order” NIAC and Parsi faced in proving their defamation claim in court. Hardly: Defamation, for public figures, is proven when a false statement is intentionally published with reckless disregard to its truth. NIAC and Parsi’s complaint in fact claimed that Mr. Daioleslam “knew” that his writings were false.

However, the complaint “failed to identify which statements they perceive as defamatory and to put forth specific evidence of actual malice relating to those statements.” NIAC and Parsi even “implied at the motions hearing that the summary judgment record did not contain all articles, videos, or other documents that might support their case.” Not only could they not provide any evidence of Mr. Daioleslam defaming but they also could not prove that any of Mr. Daioleslam’s articles were false.

Rosenberg sinks even lower when he attacks the professionalism and integrity of D.C. District Court Judge John D. Bates, the presiding judge and retired military veteran whose service included a “tour in Vietnam.” He writes that “convincing the very conservative, Bush appointed Judge John Bates…that Daioleslam acted with malice was probably impossible.” Judge Bates swore an oath to “administer justice without respect to persons.” The reality is that in his 23-page decision granting summary judgment, Judge Bates carefully explained why each of NIAC and Parsi’s claims of defamation were meritless. To insinuate judicial bias is a desperate attempt at delegitimizing Judge Bates’ court.

Rosenberg’s biggest falsehood is the incredulous characterization of the infamous substantial sanction penalty ordered against NIAC and Parsi, describing the $183,000 order as simply “shifting” some of the legal ‘discovery‘ costs.” In reality, NIAC and Parsi were sanctioned by a federal court for malfeasance because it was “necessary to punish past discovery abuses or deter future abuses.”

These abuses included withholding 4,159 calendar appointments from production, concealing 5500 emails with the “untrue” claim that they did not include agreed upon search terms and attempting to hide office computers and servers (a full list of the offenses can be read here). Rosenberg’s characterization of the events being that “NIAC complied” with its discovery requests is a blatant distortion of what actually transpired.

Lastly, Rosenberg claims that Mr. Daioleslam’s victory failed “to substantiate the accusation that NIAC was lobbying for the Iranian regime.” Yet the Washington Times reported in 2009 that law enforcement “experts” believed the emails between Parsi and the Iranian Ambassador to the UN, which were made public as a result of the discovery of the trial, offered “evidence that the group has operated as an undeclared lobby and may be guilty of violating tax laws, the Foreign Agents Registration Act and lobbying disclosure laws.”

These emails were also the basis for former Arizona Senator Jon Kyl’s repeated request for Attorney General Eric Holder to investigate NIAC.

It should come as no surprise that Rosenberg would author such an unintelligible work of fiction targeting Dr. Pipes. Rosenberg, who was forced to resign unceremoniously from his foreign policy fellowship at Media Matters due to his frequent and inexcusable use of the term ‘Israel Firster,’ has shilled for NIAC dating back to 2009. Rosenberg has also long made it his priority to mischaracterize Dr. Pipes’s positions with such fanaticism that one could only wonder if he is obsessed.

NIAC and Parsi brought the suit against Mr. Daioleslam under their own volition. They only have themselves to blame for their embarrassing and costly defeat.

Straining credulity, Rosenberg’s piece is simply an incoherent fabrication of these events.

Sam Nunberg serves as Director of The Legal Project, an activity of the Middle East Forum.

This article was originally published by Breitbart.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition. Comments written in all caps will be deleted.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Arts and Culture Author of New Book on Connection Between Jews, Punk Rock Describes Bands Flinging Gefilte Fish, Bagels at Audience (INTERVIEW)

    Author of New Book on Connection Between Jews, Punk Rock Describes Bands Flinging Gefilte Fish, Bagels at Audience (INTERVIEW)

    Some punk rockers integrate their Jewish identity into their music through food, the author of a new book on the topic told The Algemeiner on Wednesday. Michael Croland, author of Oy Oy Oy Gevalt! Jews and Punk, described the way different musicians express this connection. “One band is known for throwing gefilte fish in the mosh pit, and people at its concert slide around on it while dancing,” he recounted. “Another used to drink Manischewitz [sweet kosher] wine out of a shofar [the ram […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Scottish Soccer Club Manager Hails ‘Fantastic’ Jewish-State Visit After Victory Over Israeli Team (VIDEO)

    Scottish Soccer Club Manager Hails ‘Fantastic’ Jewish-State Visit After Victory Over Israeli Team (VIDEO)

    The manager of Scotland’s Celtic soccer club lauded Israel, after his team won a match against the Jewish state’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva on Tuesday night. Brendan Rodgers said at a post-match press conference: On behalf of the players, the people of Celtic and Scotland, Israel’s been fantastic for us. We came out here on Sunday, [and from] the hotel, the staff, we’ve been very, very warmly received. The atmosphere at the game was amazing and, obviously, one team has to lose, but you have a wonderful team here, […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Second Jaffa Jazz Festival to Reunite International, Israeli Musicians

    Second Jaffa Jazz Festival to Reunite International, Israeli Musicians

    For the second time, Israel will host the Jaffa Jazz Festival, according to Broadwayworld.com. The festival will unite 43 Israeli musicians and eight international artists for a three-day event. The program will include a special performance by an ensemble of top jazz students studying at Belgium’s Royal Conservatoire of Antwerp, the Belgrade Music Academy in Serbia, Israel’s Rimon School of Music and the jazz program of the Israel Conservatory of Music in Tel Aviv. There will also be a jazz show for children led by Israeli saxophonist […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Israel’s First NASCAR Driver Revved Up to Win

    Israel’s First NASCAR Driver Revved Up to Win

    JNS.org – As a young boy growing up in Ashdod, Israel, Alon Day got his first go-kart at age 9. By 15, he was racing them. Less than a decade later, Day has become the first Israeli professional race car driver on the NASCAR circuit. He made history by competing in NASCAR’s Xfinity Series race at the Mid-Ohio Sports Car Course on August 13. “Driving a race car is not like any other sport,” Day told JNS.org. “You are actually almost flying […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Writer of Popular Kids Series to Premiere Autobiographical Solo Show ‘Not That Jewish’

    Writer of Popular Kids Series to Premiere Autobiographical Solo Show ‘Not That Jewish’

    The writer of a popular children’s television series will premiere an off-Broadway solo show called “Not That Jewish,” according to The Hollywood Reporter. Written and performed by Monica Piper — the Emmy Award-winning showrunner of Nickelodeon’s “Rugrats” — the show is described as “the autobiographical telling of a Jew…’ish’ girl’s life.” “Not That Jewish” explores Piper’s Bronx upbringing in a show-business family, her comedy-club debut and her “almost” night with former Yankees legend Mickey Mantle. “Audiences can expect to leave laughed-out, a little teary-eyed and […]

    Read more →
  • Sports Scottish Soccer Team Will Fly to Israel on Private Jet Used by Madonna

    Scottish Soccer Team Will Fly to Israel on Private Jet Used by Madonna

    Scotland’s Celtic soccer club will fly to Israel with the same private jet Madonna used while on tour, The Scotsman reported on Monday. According to the report, the team is heading for the Jewish state to compete against Israel’s Hapoel Be’er Sheva on Tuesday night, and will be transported in the customized, luxurious Boeing 757-200 that the pop icon used in New Zealand for her six-month Rebel Heart tour, which wrapped up in March. The plane is on loan from Greece-based GainJet Aviation and can accommodate 62 passengers. The […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Revealed: Actor Jonah Hill Officiated at Wedding of Fellow Jewish Star, Singer Adam Levine

    Revealed: Actor Jonah Hill Officiated at Wedding of Fellow Jewish Star, Singer Adam Levine

    Jewish actor Jonah Hill revealed on Wednesday morning that he had officiated the wedding of good friend and Maroon 5 frontman Adam Levine. The “War Dogs” actor, 32, was a guest on Sirius XM’s The Howard Stern Show when the conversation turned to Levine’s July 2014 wedding to Victoria’s Secret model Behati Prinsloo. Hill said that after he was asked to officiate the nuptials, he started getting worried about the type of speech he was going to deliver. “I’m writing all these things, and then I […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Music Jewish Indie Rocker Dedicates New ‘Refugee’ Track to Grandfather Who Fled Nazi Persecution

    Jewish Indie Rocker Dedicates New ‘Refugee’ Track to Grandfather Who Fled Nazi Persecution

    Jewish indie singer Ezra Furman released a song on Wednesday that he said was dedicated to his grandfather, who escaped Nazi persecution. Furman told the website Consequence of Sound that the new track, called “The Refugee,” is his “first song entirely concerned with my Jewish background and present, a song dedicated to my grandfather who fled the Nazis, as well as to all of the refugees desperate for a home today.” He added, “May all the wanderers find the homes they seek, and […]

    Read more →