New calls to prosecute JDL terrorist assassins being sheltered by Israel

According to the Guardian (15 October 2013), there is a renewed effort on the part of civil rights activists and members of US Congress to pressure the Justice Department to further investigate the 11 October 1985 murder of Palestinian-American activist Alex Odeh by likely members of the Jewish Defense League (JDL). The article neglects to mention the inexcusable role the Israeli government has played in preventing the murderers from being brought to justice.

In November 1987, the Village Voice disclosed the existence of an FBI memo that accused Israeli authorities of hindering the US investigation into a series of domestic bombings allegedly committed by the JDL, including the one that killed Odeh.

The memo said that the Israeli government’s responses to repeated FBI requests for information about JDL suspects now residing in Israel ”have been untimely, incomplete and in certain cases no response was rendered,” the Voice said. […] According to the Voice, the document it obtained said ”numerous leads have been forwarded through FBI (headquarters) to the Israeli Secret Intelligence Service in Washington. Response to these leads is crucial for the solution of the 25 terrorist incidents and other criminal activity perpetrated by the JDL. ”Lead requests were for telephone subscriber information, criminal background information, arrest records, prison contacts, associates, residence status, and travel documentations.” Although there have been discussions between the Israelis and the Americans, ”no sustained improvement in the flow of information has been released,” the document said. The document said the FBI ”has developed several key suspects, many of whom have fled the United States and sought asylum in Kiryat Arba,” a large Jewish settlement on the West Bank (Associated Press, 18 November 1987; See also: Los Angeles Times, 19 November 1987).

There is also much indication that Israel refuses to extradite the suspected bombers due to widespread support for their terrorist deeds among the Israeli right-wing. According to a Los Angeles Times expose (13 May 1990), the prime suspects have been known to US authorities soon after Odeh was killed:  Keith Fuchs, Andy Green and Robert Manning. All three had a history of terrorist violence in the name of far-right Zionism. Robert Manning was eventually convicted in 1993 for a 1980 mail bombing that killed a secretary at a computer company (Los Angeles Times, 15 October 1993), but was never tried for his alleged involvement in the Odeh assassination.  Keith Fuchs and Andy Green are still believed to be living freely in a West Bank settlement (Los Angeles Times, 11 October 2007).

As Robert I. Friedman, the author of a book about Rabbi Meir Kahane, once put it:

Any attempt to extradite the suspects, the [US] officials fear, would be met in Israel by a firestorm of protest from right-wing legislators. […] Justice Department sources assert that Israel is still obstructing its investigation. While liberal Israeli politicians familiar with the case concede as much, they hasten to add that this is not out of love for the JDL trio, but because many Israelis view those who slay Arab-American supporters of the Palestine Liberation Organization or alleged Nazis as heroes. That makes Israel’s compliance with an extradition request very difficult (Los Angeles Times, 13 May 1990).


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