Halamish Attack Survivor Declares Support for Taylor Force Act During Washington Visit
The Israeli mother who lost her husband and two close relatives in a brutal Palestinian terrorist attack in July was visiting Washington, DC on Tuesday in a gesture of support for legislation currently before the US Congress that targets the Palestinian Authority’s terror payments system.
Michal Salomon – whose husband, Elad, and parents in-law, Yosef and Haya, were murdered by a knife-wielding terrorist who broke into their home in the community of Halamish during a Friday night meal on July 21 – told The Algemeiner that she viewed the pending Taylor Force Act as “an essential first step among many important steps to take” in bringing about an end to the PA’s policy of paying salaries and other monthly benefits to the families of slain or convicted terrorists.
The act is named in memory of Taylor Force — a former US Army officer and veteran of the Afghanistan and Iraq wars who was murdered in Tel Aviv in a Palestinian stabbing attack in March 2016. The 28-year-old Force, a Vanderbilt University graduate student, had been visiting Israel as part of a school-organized spring break trip.
Salomon explained that she had been visiting the US with her father and five children on a family vacation following the tragedy this past summer. “I felt I wanted to do something meaningful,” she said, “so we all went to Washington to make an effort on behalf of the Taylor Force Act.”
Among those Salomon met with were US President Donald Trump’s Middle East envoy Jason Greenblatt and Rep. Ed Royce (R-CA,) the co-chair of the House Foreign Affairs Committee which is due to send the Taylor Force Act for “markup” on Wednesday.
Salomon also met with Rep. Doug Lamborn (R-CO), who introduced the Taylor Force Act in the House in February, as well as Sen. Roy Blunt (R-MO) and Sen. Tom Cotton (R-AK). “Everyone was very sympathetic to my loss,” she said. “They said they are doing everything they can to make the Taylor Force Act a reality.”
Salomon said that she had first learned about the PA’s “martyr payments” policy – dubbed by critics as “pay-to-slay” – about three weeks after the attack on her family. Salomon and her children survived the stabbing assault by the Palestinian terrorist after she calmly ushered them into an upstairs room and held the door closed as hard as she could.
Salomon said she instinctively sympathized with the aims of the Taylor Force Act after a friend brought the legislation to her attention.
“I feel a connection to Taylor Force, and to each and every one who is part of this family of terror victims,” Salomon reflected. “Taylor Force’s murderer is getting money just like my husband’s murderer is getting money.”