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October 15, 2015 3:47 pm

Israeli Legal Eagle to File Class-Action Suit Against Facebook Over Pages Inciting Arabs to Kill Jews (INTERVIEW)

avatar by Ruthie Blum

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'Lawfare' attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, founder of Shurat HaDin-The Israel Law Center. Photo: Facebook.

‘Lawfare’ attorney Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, founder of Shurat HaDin-The Israel Law Center. Photo: Facebook.

As of Thursday evening, some 10,000 Israelis had signed a petition, launched by Shurat HaDin-The Israel Law Center, indicating their desire to join a class-action suit against Facebook for acting as an accomplice to terror.

Shurat HaDin, an NGO whose mission is combating terrorism through “lawfare,” took up the case, following multiple complaints lodged by concerned users about the proliferation of pages in Arabic that call for the killing of Jews. Since Facebook’s response has been blasé at best, with claims that content is monitored for adherence to certain “community standards,” and utterly ineffectual, since pages such as “Stab Israelis” have not been removed, Israel Law Center founder Nitsana Darshan-Leitner decided to take the social media giant to court.

Darshan-Leitner, listed this year by both Forbes and Israeli financial newspaper Globes as among Israel’s 50 most influential women, told The Algemeiner on Thursday evening that though freedom of expression is a democratic ideal, both morally and legally, “It cannot be without limits.”

Darshan-Leitner said that her organization had been thinking about how to confront the current wave of “knife terror” that has become a fad and a frenzy among young Palestinians and Israeli-Arabs, whose hearts and minds have been brainwashed with slogans about Israeli “desecration” of the Al-Aqsa Mosque in the Old City of Jerusalem.

“Usually, when considering how best to tackle terrorism, we go after the money behind it,” said Leitner, who is headed for the United States, where next week she will be bringing the lawsuit against Facebook before a San Francisco judge.

“But in this case, there is no real money trail, other than the funds spent by groups like the Islamic Movement in Israel, which pays women lots of cash to harass non-Muslims on the Temple Mount,” she explained, referring to the recently-banned Muslim women’s group, Murabitat, which was organized to keep Jews from praying on the Jordanian-Israeli administered Temple Mount.

No, said Darshan-Leitner, “Something else is causing these young people to get up, grab knives and actually stab Israelis. And that ‘something’ is incitement.”

“This is nothing new in the Palestinian Authority or in Gaza,” she said. “But, typically, it has been disseminated through sermons in mosques, teachings in schools, speeches in public squares and on TV. Today, it is being spread like wildfire through social media networks.”

Neither is antisemitic rhetoric novel, according to Darshan-Leitner, even on social media. “What we are seeing today is a phenomenon with a different feel to it – with kids not only sharing their intention to become martyrs for Allah, and encouraging one another to do the same, but immediately acting on it.”

It is this particular, palpable danger that has been terrorizing the country for weeks that must now be stopped, she said. “We thought that fighting it requires minimizing the incitement. And this is why we are trying to get an injunction against Facebook to shut down those kind of pages and monitor the site to prevent other ones from appearing.”

But, given the massive traffic on Facebook, this might be a tall order, as Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Emmanuel Nahshon hinted last Thursday, when telling The Algemeiner about his office’s attempts to get Facebook and Google, which owns YouTube, to remove incendiary material and prevent similar content from appearing in the future.

“It is not certain that removing such clips from social media will have an effect” on the current security situation in Israel, or on the Palestinian populace, he said. “Remember, social media sites cannot do anything of this sort in advance. They react to what is reported by other users and then flagged. So, for every film they remove, another one crops up.”

Still, he was cautiously optimistic about a meeting he said was going to take place in Israel this week with a visiting Facebook bigwig to discuss this very issue.

When this discussion of the Foreign Ministry measure was put to Darshan-Leitner, she emitted a slightly sardonic laugh. “All you have to do is open Facebook right now,” she said. “And you will be able to see that nothing whatsoever has been done.”

Furthermore, she added, “It is ridiculous to say that Facebook cannot monitor these things. Notice its millions of algorithms that know exactly what you like to wear and eat, who your friends are, what music you’re interested in, etc. How else do ads aimed specifically at you mysteriously appear in your feed and on the side of the page? If it’s got algorithms for consumer purposes, it can have algorithms for other purposes, as well.”

Whether the judge will rule in her favor, however, is a different question.

“That all depends on the weight the court puts on danger to human life versus the danger to freedom of speech,” she said, urging as many people as possible to join Shurat HaDin’s class-action suit.

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  • jacklance

    Zionists and ISIS are the same.

    • BrunoMitchell

      jacklance and jackass are the same.

  • Continue on the FACEBOOK with careful reproach,correcting and voicing where you can. Silence is not golden.

  • Fritz Kohlhaas

    Good luck!

  • Paul Lockwood

    It’s about time someone held Facebook responsible for participating in terror acts. If you provide the vehicle for someone to do harm, you are most certainly responsible. Facebook and Google have gotten a free pass, but they should be held legally responsible for aiding and abetting crimes against humanity.

    Jewish lives matter.

    I hope she wins in court!!!


    חזקי ואמצי בכל אשר תלכי

  • baz bruno

    we stand together against tyranny so be it

  • Baht Harim

    You are an ignorant bigot, and a traitor. The Confederate flag is the flag of traitors. Although I don’t usually care for Niki Haley’s politics, as far as I know she is a Christian. And even if she WERE a Hindu, so what? You don’t deserve to live in America. America is for EVERYONE, not just white Christians.

  • ramnath sharma

    i fully support your claim and am willing to the petition you forward or mustering support which will serve, as an eyeopener and put an end to these Hatred related Posts.

  • Atilla

    Actually the ultimate would be the termination of facebook…………..and it’s anti-Semitic scum bag executives…en total.

  • Jankel

    I would like to add that the Free Speech I criticized to US friends is a Nice Law ….for US people Not Black Not Jews Not Japanese Not Amerindian ….
    That Free Speech is an ideal but not a Religious Taboo and finds its natural limits, you want it or not.
    I am happy that the US society is reaching that wisdom : Law and Attorneys aren’t the alpha and Omega of human history. Sense of Honor, Honesty, Fidelity, Intelligence of Heart aren’t really matter of Law…

    • That’s just BS Jankel. Do you think that Obama doesn’t have or practice free speech? Or that Valeria Jarret doesn’t have free speech. Or what about Mayor Juan Castro? Your comment was ignorant, untrue and mean-spirited. Maybe you’re just an ass . God Bless Israel!!

  • Jankel

    You know what? Give the the Jews like Zuckerberg and Cies (if not killing them) as they seem to be worse enemies than “professional Anti-Jewish Goyish people…
    I think that in a few months or year , you will have such an explosion in the USA that it will start such a Jewish Civil War before it was formerly suppose to happen in Israel….
    Mr Lévy; I am an Agnostic Jew (educated in Humash Michna Dinim and so on…!and don'”t think that Belief in God is here really so important. (Hyper) Orthodoxes were and are are also our worse enemies, so far…playing games with Iran !!!!
    Eastern Europe Rabbis prohibited to emigrate to the US when Czar Kossacks exterminated them because it was not a country for the Jewish Faith…..
    US Religious fanaticism (Jewish in that case!) seems to me as dangerous as the worse anti-judaic trends.

  • zuntz haim

    Your success is our success.
    In my opinion Forgotten Path extra money here as possible to deal with him. Tax money transferred by Israel to the Palestinian Authority.
    Incitement in the PA leadership’s continued using Facebook who does nothing to prevent terrorism.
    Therefore the claim against Facebook is the right to receive a judge’s decision against Facebook to take effective steps against terrorism circulated their platform.
    Another defendant and attach the Palestinian Authority and from To be repaid for all damages people (sorry these people are not animals) made their name in the crook monetary disturbances claimed the Palestinian Authority funds held by third parties, the State of Israel.
    The importance regarding it together with the Palestinian Authority as an additional defendant in the case. The result obtained regarding the authority Hflstinithia been less important. It is one step on a long road.
    Thank you so much.
    One very proud Israeli.

  • Bob Smith

    Intelligence agencies love those pages and they monitor who uses them, posts on them and reads them. Therefore, making a very nice social networking science “map” of the network.

    The fact is its a bunch of jews making the posts in the first place so why don’t you just shut your mouths and take your psychological warfare, half assed intelligence plant posts and shove them where the sun don’t shine?

    Just a suggestion.

  • Bill Levinson

    It might be more effective to leave the pages up and report their users to law enforcement agencies (if they actually conspire to commit violence–that’s not protected by the First Amendment). If they’re in “Palestine,” it might be useful for the Mossad, Shin Bet, and so on to know where they live.

  • DocReality

    This posting by B.B. Johnson should be removed. It borders on the delusional and the comparison of the Filipino community being “oppressed” is ludicrous given the ongoing violence Israel must endure. Please remove the posting.

  • T L

    I’m sorry for my error in her name. I will be praying for Ms Nitsana Darshan-Leitner.

  • T L

    To B B. You don’t need Facebook to communicate. If you have internet, you have access to Skype. Not only can you talk, you can see one another face to face.
    Facebook monitors every thing. They monitor words and pictures. They know immediately when someone says or displays anything that is inappropriate. A long time ago, there was an episode on Law And Order that took a person to court because his company, which was very much like Facebook, was allowing incitement of terror that resulted in the deaths of people. The owner of the company was arrested, tried and I believe convicted for the deaths of those people who were murdered after the hate was allowed to be publicized on that social media and incite individuals to commit murder. He claimed ignorance of the law. Actually, he was just plain ignorant.
    I have asked God, through Jesus Christ, because I am a Christian, for justice in this case. I asked Him to help His people and not let this wicked deed go unpunished. If Mr Zuckerberg is the owner of Facebook then he is the very last buck. He should not be allowed to hide behind freedom of speech. Freedom of speech was meant to be about our words not the physical murder of human beings. I will continue to pray for the safety, wisdom, and knowledge of Ms Shurat HaDin. Our Lord will give her the words to say. She will use them as the stone of David to bring down Goliath. May God bless her.

  • NYM

    “This woman is repeating History. This is what Hitler and his bunch of Nazi’s did.”?????
    WTF? What brand of idiot compares rounding people up & gassing them to a class-action suit against a social media site?
    I guess the same brand of idiot who thinks that Jews should just accept violent incitement against them so Filipinos can share pictures.
    I don’t know what’s stupider, thinking that a class-action suit would bring Facebook down or thinking that not being able to stop all crimes means that we should just shut up and take it.

  • beth harris

    FACEBOOK INCITES TO KILL: (and always tells me “the page (like “Death to Israel” !?? did not violate any of our standards”) – Would anything? That’s why we need to pray and improve our actions (spiritual warfare) and BOYCOTT OR SUPPORT THE SUIT OF FACEBOOK.

  • Waggoner family

    PLEASE give us an English Version of the Petition so that WE TOO can Join with You and Israel to FIGHT this terrible thing that Facebook is doing! G_d bless you!

  • Rhonda Rembiszewski

    I can understand the concern to take Facebook and Google to court over the content that is posted in their websites. There is a problem though. Facebook, Google, and many other websites are connected to the world-wide web, the internet. Although they must have certain rules and regulations as to what can be shared and posted within their realm of the internet, this particular situation goes even higher than these websites.
    The Internet is used world-wide, even though some of the corporations are in the United States. The world view of “freedom of speech” goes into the laws affecting the world, which inadvertently leads to the United Nations. I have seen many people blaming websites for these leading temptations, but they are websites.
    Websites are to provide information and, sometimes, incite action……but the websites themselves cannot and are not automated to create the action; anymore than an inanimate object can do anything. Someone has to enter the algorithm, just as someone has to pull the trigger or wield the knife.
    You can place blame on these things, but remember that these inanimate objects cannot do anything unless someone causes them to move. Perhaps the best thing to do would be to put the blame on the people who are causing these inanimate objects to move.
    In law and criminal justice, you must have an intention or evil thought (mens rea) to create an evil action (actus rheas). There is no logical way that an inanimate object can have either an evil thought or an evil action because they are not living beings, they are things which must be put to use in order to work.
    Only people can have evil thoughts, evil intentions, and evil actions….not even the creatures of the land, water, or air has these evil thoughts or intentions, only human beings people.
    Therefore in order to bring an end to the threat of injustice or loss of life, the blame must be placed on the people who are causing the action. It is true that corporations such as Facebook and Google are “entities”…..but even these entities cannot move without human interaction, they are as inanimate as their websites.
    It’s rather ironic really.

  • shlomo

    Great go get em anyone who instigates terror is as bad as the terroist

  • Albert Richter

    I hope you succeed,Shurat HaDin,There are many of us in the U.S. that try our best to support Israel & your correct, Facebook does more Harm to both of our countries than our own government will ever admit too.
    So it is my wish that you & yours, succeed where others have failed, and may your light continue to shine in these dark times.

  • Seipherd

    Hmm.. Seems the same lawfare could go against all sorts of “black lives matter” liberal type causes, if not for the PRESSSSidential media cherrying picking these off the radar.

  • Jerry

    Good luck Nitsana. I hope you succeed.

  • Mark_NYC

    Bravo! Darshan-Leitner is absolutely correct that Facebook can do much much more to control incendiary and inflammatory speech on its pages. What do you think Mark Zuckerberg would do if Facebook pages starting popping up all over the place suggesting that people attack and stab people of Chinese origin such as his wife!

  • Abby Siegel

    Thank you Nitsana, this matter must be addressed immediately.

  • Ira Kasper

    If pages calling for death to a people is not the same as yelling fire in a theater than there is no Constitution.

  • God bless y’all’

  • Shirley Pikoos

    Incitement of this sort of t hing is wrong, kids these day believe anything they read and the various sites calling for the hate of Jews time for Facebook to acknowledge they literally encourage it by keeping these pages on.

  • Wayne Scott

    Facebook has blocked my account and IP address because I was sharing articles showing how bad the Muslims were. Someone replied to me that the Jews were just as bad terrorist. The next thing I know I was locked out of Facebook. It appears that Zuckerburg is a self hating Jew.

    • Atilla

      I feel that the best solution could be provided by a Kidon unit.

      They are anti-Semitic vermin.

    • A Zionist

      Try incognito mode (Chrome) or privacy modes on Firefox etc

      FB cannot lock you out by these means. Alternatively, use a VPN or software to hide your IP address.

      I wish there was a campaign to inundate FB with complaints or a means to Boycott FB for its refusal to take down antisemitic sites such as “Jewish Ritual Murder.”

      FB maintain that this does not “violate” their “community standards”.

  • I am in full agreement when it comes to FaceBook needing to remove such posts as described above…If it were a post that had anything to do with Islam, it would be removed immediately…I feel that if they do not shut these down, ban anymore from being posted, the ones who is over such things, can and should be charged as an accessory to murder, or attempted murder…Do this, and then see if they still find nothing wrong…

  • Sharon Bolling

    Good for the Israelis. I, as an American, would sign th!at petition too! Facebook needs to police their users a lot better, and they need someone with some darn sense as the person deciding who is a terrorist group. It’s quite obvious a kid withiut discernment is trying to do the job now…without much success.

    • Ariana

      “…they need someone with some darn sense as the person deciding who is a terrorist group”. Aren’t they those who come from another country to do these terrorism acts?! Most of them are Muslims (I wonder why) and even after they accepted as immigrants with full rights becoming citizens – so practically under respective country oath – no! they kill and blow up people because they taking full advantage of democracy to install an undemocratic (theocratic) state. They should be deported to the fourth generation back if they started not to respect the law but to install caliphates.
      Is what Canada do. Not to many a year – up to 10,000.
      But what’s true the Canadians told them what & how their laws (Canadians) it’s a must – in Canada. And is working.

  • MB

    Nitsana is great and her organization, the ILC, is great.

    [The choice of a forum in the FB litigation is a matter of great importance.]

    Israel can do a lot more than it has done: It can pass legislation, if such legislation is not now on the books, that will shift complete liability for all damages caused by the attackers to the attackers and, in appropriate cases, to their families.

    That means:
    1. Liability for all damages to persons and property, public and private.
    2. Liability for the costs of medical care and/or post-mortem care of the attackers.
    3. In the event that the attackers or their families cannot pay the liability, their assets should be seized and sold; any remaining liability should be satisfied as a charge against transfers from the Government of Israel to the P.A.
    4. No terrorist should be entitled to any benefit from the State…not for medical care, not for disability, not for rehabilitation, not for education. All expenses unavoidably incurred by the State and not satisfied by the terrorists or their families should be shifted to the P.A.
    5. Similarly, families that have encouraged or rewarded terrorist-family members should suffer the forfeiture described above.
    6. All real and personal property, e.g. automobiles, used in the commission of terrorists attacks should be deemed forfeited, on a showing of a preponderance of the of evidence.
    7. Terrorists should be de-naturalized.
    8. The families of terrorists should receive no benefits from the State by virtue of the acts of terror, e.g. death benefits or survivor benefits paid on account of a terrorist killed in an attack. If the “breadwinner” of a household is killed or disabled in the commission of a terrorist attack, his family should receive no assistance of any kind from the State of Israel.
    9. The bodies of terrorists should be withheld and destroyed or buried in unmarked graves in some wilderness that might fall to P.A. jurisdiction.
    10. No public mourning of terrorists should be permitted.
    11. Demolition of the homes of terrorists should be handled on an expedited basis.

    In these 11 points, there should be some usable proposals; some might be unworkable or otherwise problematic. But, Israel should not retire from the engagement: Its enemies should know that they can nurture any hateful, paranoid stupidity they want in their bedrooms but, in public life, they have to, at least, pretend to be civilized.

  • Gregory DuPont

    Good Job!

  • Lee Goffin

    Please provided an English version for other names to be added to the petition.

  • Wm. J. Levy

    What can Jews expect from an Agnostic nee’ Jew like Zuckerberg!!

    Damn him and Facebook.

    Jews better get tough and every Jew should buy a 9mm or a 40 cal. pistol and learn how to use it.

    They are going to start coming after Jews here and attacks will be violent an deadly.

    It has to happen when our haters think we are so weak. Wait till HIAS brings 200,000 Syrians into the U.S..

    These are not Jews. These are the crazies.

  • Alex Fuss

    Freedom of speech ends where one’s right to life begins.

  • Francis Figliola

    Good girl!

  • harri1234

    if facebook wins their suit with their stable of attorneys and paying of judges(?) would each executive and member of Board of Directors be liable personally for acting outside the scope of their job description?

  • fanya vasilevsky

    I would like to join Shurat HaDin class action.

  • harri1234

    this is Brilliant !!!!

  • John Cohen

    I really hope that something will come of this because for too long now, the stereotyped response from face book to complaints of blatantly anti Semitic comments that these comments don’t fall outside the parameters of their guidelines. One can’t use the words like ragheads or the well known expression ” nigger in the woodpile” which means the cause of the trouble, but Facebook pages urging Arabs to stab Jews or calling for the death of Israel are permitted.!!!!! Something’s wrong with the “guidelines” of Facebood

  • Richard Eugene Fielder Jr

    Good i hope you win over Facebook and CNN should be sued for the same.

  • Ezra

    Incitement is definitely the immediate cause for a Palestinian to stab Jews. But incitement is only the overlay for antisemitism. Palestinians hate Jews and want to see them gone, preferably dead. That is the real reason why a YouTube, social media or Twitter message can inspire a Palestinian will pick up a knife, ax or gun to shoot a Jew, any Jew.