Hamas Terror Victims Sue Pro-Palestinian Groups for Alleged Support

A group of American and Israeli victims of the October 7, 2023 Hamas terrorist attack filed a lawsuit against American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) and National Students for Justice in Palestine (NSJP). The lawsuit alleges that AMP and NSJP promote and support Hamas' goals, leading to a rise in anti-Semitic threats and violence on US college campuses.

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Mahnoor Jehangir
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Hamas Terror Victims Sue Pro-Palestinian Groups for Alleged Support

Hamas Terror Victims Sue Pro-Palestinian Groups for Alleged Support

A group of American and Israeli victims of the October 7, 2023 Hamas terrorist attack have filed a lawsuit against American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) and National Students for Justice in Palestine (NSJP), alleging that these groups promote and support Hamas' goals, leading to a rise in anti-Semitic threats and violence on U.S. college campuses. The lawsuit, filed on May 1, 2024 in the U.S. District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia, seeks to hold the defendants liable for acting as Hamas' propaganda arm in the United States.

Why this matters: This lawsuit has significant implications for the fight against anti-Semitism and terrorism, as it could set a precedent for holding organizations accountable for promoting and supporting extremist groups. The outcome of this case could also influence the tone and nature of pro-Palestinian activism on U.S. college campuses.

The plaintiffs, including survivors and family members of those killed in the attack that claimed 1,200 lives and took 240 hostages, accuse AMP and NSJP of providing "continuous, systematic, and substantial assistance" to Hamas' acts of international terrorism. The lawsuit alleges that the groups disseminated a manifesto and plan of attack, confirming their intention to foment chaos, violence, and terror in the United States.

According to the complaint, AMP and NSJP coordinated the occupation of dozens of college campuses across the country to force the American government and academia to bend to Hamas' will. The lawsuit states, "Through NSJP, AMP uses propaganda to intimidate, convince, and recruit uninformed, misguided, and impressionable college students to serve as foot soldiers for Hamas on campus and beyond."

The plaintiffs' legal team, consisting of attorneys from Greenberg Traurig, LLP, Holtzman Vogel, the National Jewish Advocacy Center, and the Schoen law firm, emphasizes the severity of the allegations. "This case is very simple: When someone tells you they are aiding and abetting terrorists—believe them," said Mark Goldfeder, CEO and director of the National Jewish Advocacy Center.

The lawsuit comes amid a wave of pro-Palestine protests on U.S. college campuses, including at Columbia, Yale, and Harvard universities. AMP quietly admitted to sending money to campus groups for protests, with leaders of SJP chapters among those arrested at Columbia University and UCLA. Christina Jump, AMP's attorney, acknowledged funneling cash to individual SJP chapters, with grants of up to $2,000 each.

This is not the first time AMP has faced legal scrutiny. The attorney general of Virginia, Jason Miyares, launched an investigation into the organization shortly after the October 7 attacks, citing concerns that it was raising funds for "impermissible purposes under state law." The group is also fighting an earlier lawsuit by the family of David Boim, who was killed in Israel by Hamas in 1996, seeking damages from AMP on grounds similar to the new suit.

The Anti-Defamation League has tied AMP to Hamas via the nonprofits that shut down after being found liable for terrorism, then re-formed as AMP. SJP has set up chapters in 250 campuses in the U.S. and Canada, with Democratic Rep. Ilhan Omar's 21-year-old daughter, Isra Hirsi, as an SJP leader.

The lawsuit's progression sheds light on the recent wave of anti-Israel unrest on American campuses, suggesting that many of the protests were inspired and coordinated by the NSJP umbrella group. If NSJP's ties to Hamas are confirmed, it implies that students are getting their marching orders from an international terrorist group, contradicting their claims to be advancing humanitarian or peaceful causes. The outcome of this case could have significant implications for the future of pro-Palestinian activism on U.S. college campuses and the fight against anti-Semitism.

Key Takeaways

  • American and Israeli victims of the 2023 Hamas attack sue AMP and NSJP for promoting Hamas' goals.
  • Lawsuit alleges groups provided "continuous, systematic, and substantial assistance" to Hamas' terrorism.
  • AMP and NSJP accused of coordinating campus protests to intimidate and recruit students for Hamas.
  • Lawsuit seeks to hold organizations accountable for promoting extremism and terrorism.
  • Outcome could impact pro-Palestinian activism on US campuses and the fight against anti-Semitism.