Thursday, September 24, 2009

News from Ezra Nawi

The letter I received from Jewish Voice for Peace...

Dear Aysem,

As we celebrated Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish New Year, many of us wondered what the new year would hold for Ezra Nawi. A judge was expected to render her sentence on his case on Monday, the first day after the holiday.

Faced with over 20,000 of your signatures, Judge Eilata Ziskind decided to postpone the sentencing.

A few days before her ruling, the judge got another call to conscience. Boaz Okun, a prominent judge and legal authority in Israel, published an op-ed in an Israeli daily, stating that Ezra deserved 'defense from justice':

The penal code allows the canceling of a guilty verdict against a criminal if the crime committed shrinks vis-a-vis the arbitrary behavior of the state. This is called 'defense from justice.' (1)

Ezra Nawi's sole crime was trying to stop a military bulldozer from destroying the homes of Palestinian Bedouins in the South Hebron region.

Mr. Okun quoted from the hearing proceedings, where Yehudit Karp, a former Israel Attorney General, stated in reference to Ezra Nawi:

Those people that break the law in order to save others and to defend human rights are the ones that get written on golden pages.

But Ezra's troubles are not over yet.

The judge has offered him an impossible "deal." She is willing to reduce his expected sentence from jail time to community service, but only if Ezra waives any further appeals--in fact acknowledging that he is guilty without any way to exonerate himself.

This is far from a golden page, far from a defense from justice.


The letter goes on, but this is the end of the news I received re: Ezra. I will keep you posted on this...

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