Omar Barghouti accepting the Gandhi peace award just now from Promoting Enduring Peace at Yale pic.twitter.com/8xnhFKAHxt
— Rebecca Vilkomerson (@RVilkomerson) April 23, 2017
I’m delighted that tonight, Omar Barghouti received the Gandhi Peace Prize from the U.S. NGO Promoting Enduring Peace at Yale University. When Barghouti was arrested by Israeli police on trumped-up charges of failing to report income to tax authorities, the judge took away his travel privileges. That meant he would miss the event, which would suit Israel well since, like China, it prefers it enemies not to receive distinguished international awards.
But I wrote a blog post about this and joined in the campaign to protest Israel’s persecution. The judge in the case decided to permit Barghouti to travel to the U.S. to accept the award, which he did tonight. Mazel tov to all who stood up for right.
I have resumed publishing for Middle East Eye over the past month. They’ve published two articles on mine in that period, I’m delighted to say. I invite you to give this one a read: Trump’s Middle East policy: A bad case of whiplash.
But yesterday, the other shoe dropped. Israel’s state prosecutor responded like a crafty poker player. He raised Justice and called him. Charges were filed in Israel against Kaydar. The U.S. and Israeli charge sheets expanded in great detail upon the nature of the cybercrimes with which he’s charged:
According to the indictment, the suspect tried to extort the Republican senator because the senator had criticized the culprit making the threatening calls. The suspect called the senator and demanded that he retract his comments, and if not, he would fine him in Bitcoin every 72 hours and if he didn’t pay, he would incriminate him on the internet. When the politician did not respond, the suspect ordered drugs online and sent them to his house in order to incriminate him. When the envelopes arrived the suspect threatened to publish pictures attesting to the fact that he had drugs in his house.
The Guardian expanded on this:
The indictment said that after Lopez, a Republican on the Delaware senate, criticised the wave of threats, Kadar called him to demand payment in bitcoin or face incrimination on the internet. When Lopez did not respond, he ordered drugs online to send to the senator’s house.
Kadar is separately accused of threatening to kidnap and kill the children of a former CIA and Pentagon official.
In addition to the bomb threats to Jewish centres, the indictment said Kadar made a bomb threat against an El-Al flight to Israel that sparked fighter jets to be scrambled, and threatened a Canadian airport, which required passengers to disembark in emergency slides and left six people injured.
He is also accused of threatening a Virgin flight that as a result dumped eight tons of fuel before landing, and of threatening a plane being used by the NBA’s Boston Celtics.
The Daily News also reported:
In one particularly harrowing call in early January, Michael Kadar, 18, allegedly said he was five minutes away from an Orlando, Fla., center and armed with an AR-15 rifle.
“Kadar warned that he was going to shoot children in the head, and that there was going to be a bloodbath,” said a criminal complaint the U.S. Justice Department filed. Four minutes later, the teen allegedly called in a bomb threat to a JCC preschool in Tampa, Fla.
“Kadar warned that the shrapnel would blow off the children’s heads and two dozen children would be slaughtered,” the complaint filed in federal court in Orlando said. “Kadar claimed to be in a car by the school with a detonator in hand.”
He is reported to have had $500,000 in his Bitcoin account. One wonders what his parents were thinking. Or if they were thinking.
Interestingly, Justice filed criminal, but not hate crime charges against Kaydar. Given his victims and the nature of his threats, it’s clear he was targeting Jewish institutions. This should be classified a hate crime. I’m guessing they felt it would be a stretch to prove a hate crime given the suspect is Jewish. And presumably, since his motive may’ve been greed rather than Anti-Semitic animus, that would mitigate a hate crime.
Shai Nitzan, the prosecutor, wants to prosecute Kaydar in Israel. He is refusing to extradite him. This accords with a traditional Israeli policy not to extradite its citizen to face charges abroad. There are hundreds of Jews who seek refuge from criminal prosecution in Israel. Invariably, the country will neither try them for their crimes nor extradite. Thus making Israel the perfect criminal haven for dirty Jews. The one exception was Meyer Lansky. Despite promises to bring tons of mafia cash, the Israeli government refused to confer citizenship on him.
Others who have secured safety from prosecution are the two JDL murderers of Alex Odeh, the Palestinian-American activist who died in a bombing at his Orange County (CA) office. His murderers live safely to this day on West Bank settlements. Crime does pay if you’re a Jewish terrorist.
I wonder why Nitzan waited to file charges until the Justice Department did? My guess is that given Israel’s inaction, Justice wanted to ratchet up the pressure. If Israel wasn’t going to file charges, the U.S. would. And if Israel failed to secure a conviction or the sentence was too lenient, U.S. charges would still be extant.
Oddly, Israeli media still may not report Kaydar’s name. What are they waiting for? A guilty verdict? The Jewish Forward, seemingly following Israel’s lead (though it is not subject to Israeli law) named Kaydar in February but called him only “the suspect” in a report earlier this month. Why the back-pedaling? I thought journalists were supposed to report the story, not hide it.
A reader here published a comment saying that he lived in Ashdod and knew the Kaydar family. He adds that the suspect is a nephew of Mordechai Kedar, a leading trainer of Shabak agents. Kedar teaches Arabic at Bar Ilan University and is one of the most vicious, Arabophobic academics in Israel. I’ve written several posts about him. The combination of Uncle Mordkhe the Arab hater with Nephew Michael the greedy nerd terrorist seems odd, to say the least.
I’ve e mailed the Justice Department for its response to the Israeli announcement. It declined to comment.