WELCOME TO THE OFFICIAL RICHARD E GERSTEIN JUSTICE BUILDING BLOG. THIS BLOG IS DEDICATED TO JUSTICE BUILDING RUMOR, HUMOR, AND A DISCUSSION ABOUT AND BETWEEN THE JUDGES, LAWYERS AND THE DEDICATED SUPPORT STAFF, CLERKS, COURT REPORTERS, AND CORRECTIONAL OFFICERS WHO LABOR IN THE WORLD OF MIAMI'S CRIMINAL JUSTICE. THIS BLOG HAS BEEN CALLED "THE DEFINITIVE BLOG ON MIAMI CRIMINAL LAW" BY THE NY TIMES, THE WASHINGTON POST, THE POPE, AND DONALD TRUMP WHO ALSO ONCE SAID IT WAS "REALLY GREAT". POST YOUR COMMENTS, OR SEND RUMPOLE A PRIVATE EMAIL AT HOWARDROARK21@GMAIL.COM

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

COURAGE AND STRENGTH BEYOND ALL MEASURE

The following account is almost unbearably sad. And yet, it is a story of strength and courage and a life that would not be defeated. 


All nations have their important or tragic days seared into the national consciousness. April 22, 1979 is one of those days for Israelis


In the early morning hours of that day, Samir Kuntar, then 16 years of age, landed on a beach in Israel with three other members of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine.


The four men killed a policeman and then broke into an apartment. The events that ensued are tragic beyond all measure. They kidnapped a young Israeli man- Danny Haran, and his four year old son. They took them to a nearby beach and killed Mr. Haran in front of his son. Kuntar then killed the four year old boy by smashing his skull against a rock with the butt of his rifle.


While the terrorists were in the apartment, Samadar Hadan, the wife of Danny and mother of two young children, hid with her daughter. She accidentally smothered the two year old to death while trying to keep her quiet.


Samir Kuntar was captured and tried and convicted for murder and has remained in an Israeli prison ever since. He is a hero to Palestinian terrorists, and it is believed the hijacking of the Achille Lauro cruise ship in 1985 was done to secure his release.


Now Israel has released Kuntar in exchange for the bodies of two dead Israeli soldiers being held by Hezbollah. Hezbollah carried out a 2006 raid into Israel kidnapping two  Israeli soldiers just to trade them for Kuntar. 


 Kuntar was released Wednesday night  and celebrated as a hero in Syria, all while the blood of a two year old and four year old child and their father, still drips from his hands. Like Macbeth, he is dammed to carry those blood spots through eternity. No amount of washing and no cheering crowds will wipe those stains from a soul dammed to eternal hell for his acts on this earth. 


Here is the story of survival and courage: Samadar Hadan, the lone survivor of this brutal and senseless attack,  eventually remarried and raised two daughters. She lives near the parents of one of the captured and now dead Israeli soldiers. When asked how she felt about Kuntar’s release, as recently reported in the NY Times, (the title to the post is linked to the article) this is what she had to say:


“Samir Kuntar is not my private prisoner, and we live in a country where there is a framework for making decisions,” she said, echoing what she wrote in a letter to the prime minister and the cabinet ahead of their decision to proceed with the deal. “I asked them not to think about my personal pain and to make decisions according to the interests of the state.”

Kuntar and Hezbollah are cowards. Killers of little children.  And yet, they have lost a battle they can never win. Samadar Hadan  has won. She survived and lived her life.  Hadan’s existence, her new family, her two daughters, all prove that despite Kuntar's release, he and Hezbollah have failed and can never ever win. Not when facing the strength and courage of Samadar Hadan.


Now if a bomb were mistakenly to fall on Kuntar’s head as he passed over the border to Syria, that would not be a bad thing either.



31 comments:

Anonymous said...

Actually, it was Haran's four year old daughter who was beaten to death with a rifle butt by Kuntar.

Today he was welcomed in Lebanon by Hezbollah as a hero.

Those stories are not followed by views of Israeli children throwing stones at Palestinians.

Anonymous said...

Rump,

Are you ready for some FOOTBALL? I'm looking forward to the suicide pool.

Toots

Rumpole said...

yes 10:52 I'm up at 2am. Can't sleep. sick.

There are unfortunately 100's of tragedies in the middle east. The Palestinian people have suffered greatly for many many decades, and many many innocent Palestinian children have died, usually because of an Israeli response to Palestinian aggression. I mourn for those children as well.

Perhaps the one small bright spot is the program that takes Israeli and Palestinian teens and sends them together to summer camp in the US. That will certainly help break the cycle of violence. One hopes it does not take until those young people are in power to resolve this, but who knows?

Rumpole said...

by the way, my top two choices for the upcoming British open are Sergio Garcia and Phil Miickelson, who always seems to do better when Eldrick isn't around.

word of the day guys said...

WORD OF THE DAY!!!!


CRUCIVERBALIST: one who enjoys puzzles, especially crossword puzzles.

Use: Every day during the trial, the judge, who was an avid cruciverbalist, did the daily puzzle on the bench unbeknownst to the lawyers and the jury.

Anonymous said...

What happened to Ranck's blog??? can't seem to find anything on it!!
E. Garcia

Anonymous said...

Shumie's a Cruciverbalist!!

Anonymous said...

It appears David's Blog has been taken off then internet....can someone please tell us what is going on? PULEEASE....PRETTY PULEEASE....

Anonymous said...

CRUCIVERBALIST FRAGILISTIKEXPIALIDOTIOUS, even though the sound of it is somthing quite atrocious.

Anonymous said...

Rumpole, I am the father of two small children ages 3 1/2 and 7 months. I am haunted by your post and the stories in the NY Times.

Today the front page of the Times had two photographs: 1 ) Of PM Olmert hugging the widow of Sgt. Goldwasser in front of his casket.
2) Below that was a picture of the terrorist being kissed by his brother.

I respect and understand the code of leaving no warrior behind on the battlefield. But I cannot believe the Israelis, who have always said they will never negotiate with terrorists, giving into Hezbollah. And what a thing to give in on!! If I have ever seen a case that merits the death penalty, it is this one. That man is a monster and I don't give a damn that he did it when he was 16. He does not deserve to walk this earth.

I don't think I will ever forget this story for as long as I live. I thank the lord I live in a country where my two children are relatively safe.

I'm just sick over this whole mess. I really don't have more to say, just thanks in a way for bringing this story to our attention, and in another way, I wish you hadn't done so.

Phil R

old guy said...

Israel does not have the death penalty - except for War Crimes.

Only Eichmann was ever executed.

attorney-rejected-by-the-princess said...

The ending- well said rumpy.

Attorney Rejected By The Princess,
proud member since 2008.

batman said...

The agents of justice will find Kuntar. Ever hear the expression, "I would not give a plug nickel for [someone's] future"? Patience is a golden virtue and just like the members of Black September, who got what was coming to them, this man, after the hype is gone and he is forgotten, will disappear, Jimmy Hoffa style.

As I said to Ra's Al-Ghul just before the train crash, "I am not going to kill you, but I don't have to save you." I will be watching from the shadows and alleys relishing in what most probably will be Kuntar's very slow and painful death. Hopefully it will occur before the very eyes of his loved ones who celebrate his infamy.

Anonymous said...

Ahhh, 10:52, there is a good reason for taking an innocent 4 year old and beating her head in with a rifle butt. Speaking of butts, that is definitely a word to describe you. Why don't you go to Lebanon and fight for Hezbollah. I am sure they will welcome your help. A--hole.

Anonymous said...

What happened to Ranck?

Anonymous said...

2:26 Rumpy, the open championship held annually in Britain is not the British open. To call the open championship 'The British Open' is to show ignorance at many levels.

Fake Don Horn said...

Regarding David Ranck, I have been given authority to fire outside the SAO. That includes PDs, private attorneys, court staff, even the inmates at DCJ.

Effective immediately, anyone who speculates about what happened to David Ranck will be fired. If you talk about Ranck, you will be fired If you think about Ranck, you will be fired. If you lie to me about whether you talked and/or thought about Ranck, even if you didn't think about Ranck, you will be fired. If you lie to me as why you were fired, I'll just fire your sorry ass again.

Watch out Rumpole, I might just fire you.

Anonymous said...

The atrocities the Israelis and Palestinians afflict upon each other are tragic beyond measure.

Retributive "justice" is the justification for continuing to do

harm to one another - an eye for an eye - and is summed up eloquently and cloaked in "civility" by Rumpole, who writes "If a bomb fell on Kuntar's head as he crossed the border that would not be a bad thing."

I am reminded of Desmond Tutu's quote - "To forgive is the highest form of self-interest. I need to forgive so that my anger and resentment and lust for revenge don’t corrode my being."

Otherwise, Israelis and Palestinians will continue to brutally and senselessly kill each other forever.

Anonymous said...

Gorgeous...Ill draw you a hot bath, make you a cup of english tea with honey and a bowl of chicken soup, rub your back with warm oil and put you to bed.

Feel better.

Hugs and kisses,
Your biggest fan

Anonymous said...

time to file speedies on cases involving miami dade officers michael king and antonio roberts. You can read about their arrests in todays online herald.

Thank you

Rumpole said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Rumpole said...

5:07 PM. You are right and I am wrong. It is better to forgive. Forgiveness would be the path to peace. But this crime is so venal, so low, so almost unspeakable, that I cannot bring myself to do it. I keep thinking of that young boy, his last moments on earth being filled with watching his father murdered. And his father- his fear must have been entirely for his child- I just cannot bring myself to do what I agree is right.

I do note that part of forgiveness is redemption. Did this man renounce violence during his time in prison? Did he apologize? Is he going to dedicate his life to making amends for this horrible tragedy? I think not. I think he revels in his hero status.

I could not forgive Hitler, or Stalin, or the Nazi guards that put the children and old people in the gas chambers, and I cannot forgive this man.

I could forgive someone who hurt me or my family who was genuinely remorseful and spent a lifetime trying to right a wrong. Under those circumstances I could forgive a lot (although I admit probably not this particular crime.) But that is me, and I am Human. I may know what is right, but it does not mean I can always bring myself to do it.

Anonymous said...

Anybody know what happened at the PD hearing today on their withdrawal from cases?

CAPTAIN said...

THE CAPTAIN REPORTS:

The PD Conflict Hearing is on July 30.

Cap Out ...

Anonymous said...

All this talk about the back and forth between the Israelis and Palestinians and other terrorists always leaves out some very important distinctions:

The Israelis do not intentionally kill civilians. The Palestinians do.

The Israelis do not send suicide bombers to Palestinian malls/storefronts and indiscriminantly kill whomever they come into contact with.

The Israelis do not kidnap and kill children.

The Israelis do not smear their hands in Palestinian blood for international distribution.

The Israelis do not post videotapes of themselves beheading people.

Comparing the Israelis to the terrorists is naive and irresponsible, to say the least. The groups simply are NOT equally culpable. The terrorists intentionally commit random evil acts on a regular basis. The Israelis do not.

Anonymous said...

nice article in the herald about 15 year cop getting fired for demanding free coffee and threatening not to respond to emergencies at starbucks if he doesn't get his six free coffees a day at starbucks. Also failed a polygraph.

Will the Feds investigate potential extortion charges??? It would be a shame if they didn't.

Anonymous said...

rumour is Miami Beach PD offered a job to that daytona cop who extorted starbucks for free coffee and promised delayed response time to emergencies if his demands were not met.

He will be a welcome addition to miami beach as he is ignorant, has a sense of entitlement, and (despite being a cop) is not very good at committing crimes without getting caught

Welcome aboard officer. Glad to have you.

Anonymous said...

THE CRUCIVERBALIST CHOMPED ON CAULIFLOWER AND BROCOLLI WHILE MARKING HIS OPENING STATEMENT... AND THE JURY RECOILED. FA

Anonymous said...

oh, yeah. every other person on this blog is outraged at what happened in Israel many years ago. and you should be. no question about it. But isn't it funny how some people are quick to tell old -- older than 65-- African-Americans to forgive the KKK that burned and raped and hung their families? Isn't it funny how most white people in this country are quick to tell African-Americans to get over the shame of being called a nigger? Isn't it funny how most people want to tell us that we all have the same opportunity in this life when we know that's not true? Violence is never the answer to violence. But forgiveness and forgetfulness will only get you one thing, back to where things were wayyyy back then. Let's not ever forget what Hitler and Stalin and Sadam Hussein did. Also, let's not forget that only 30 to 40 years ago, African-Americans, no matter their education or doing the right thing, could not go to Miami Beach without being questioned as to whether they're the maid or the gardener. So Rump, I do understand your frustration with what happened, unjustice like what happened over there happen to other people every day in this country, in the United States of America. As a human being, we should be outraged when violence is directed at a group for no other reason than just belonging to that group, no matter who they are. And the way I see the turmoil in that part of the world , none of the parties are truly innocent. IT'S CALLED SURVIVAL, AND ONLY THE STRONG WILL SURVIVE.

Anonymous said...

Get a grip. No rationale person is telling African-Americans to forgive the KKK.

Anonymous said...

11:24:

Not only is what "happened in Israel many years ago" outrageous, it continues today. I for one do not believe we should ever forget the atrocities supposed civilized societies commit on others or their own citizens lest as the old adage goes we are doomed to repeat them. Forgiveness on the other hand is a much more personal choice. Some might argue that you forgive someone for a wrong not because it absolves them but because it frees you. Resentment is like drinking poison and expecting the other person to die. Others among us are of the Old Testament crowd, an eye for an eye and all that. Like I said forgiveness is up to each person.

Unfortunately, intolerance had an early foothold here. Many groups suffered from its injustice. African-Americans weren’t the only group which had problems on Miami Beach. Jews were not permitted at Lagorce, Surf Club, Bath Club, and others. For that matter neither were Hispanics. Yes, we have a long history of prejudice, ethnocentrism, and oppression here. Yet with all her faults and problems this is my country and I love her. It is still the greatest country on earth and the best place to live.

Today there have been tremendous strides towards erasing bigotry against all people and yet it still remains. There will always be small minded people afraid to change and accept others for who they are and not who they think they are.
Yet today, no one here enters a supermarket, school, or church full of innocents and ignites a bomb filled with ball bearings and nails to carry out their misguided racial, ethnic, or religious agenda. There is a difference.

African-Americans were persecuted, murdered, and raped. We should never forget that sordid part of our history not only because we need to be reminded how horrible men can treat their fellow man but to remember the individuals who gave their lives unwillingly. One mans pain is his pain but that should never be the reason or excuse to diminish injustice elsewhere.

We Jews will survive. We have proven that over and over for thousands of years. We will survive and prosper. We do so because while we forgive we never forget. There are many lessons that the disparate groups that make up these United States can teach each other, but we must be willing to listen.

While I am sympathetic to any person laboring under the yoke of oppression please do not compare what Americans (we are all Americans, aren’t we) are facing here with the indiscriminate death and destruction being played out against the Israeli’s. It isn’t a fair comparison at least not today.