Responding to a proposal made by the Religious Zionists of America, leading Members of Congress have introduced a bipartisan bill requiring the U.S. government to offer a $5-million reward for information leading to the capture of the Palestinian terrorists who kidnapped and murdered a 16 year-old American citizen, and two other teenagers, in Israel last month.
U.S. Senator Ted Cruz (R-Texas) and U.S. Representatives Brad Sherman (D-California) and Doug Lamborn (R-Colorado) introduced the Naftali Fraenkel Reward Bill on July 9, following repeated calls by the Religious Zionists of America for such a reward.
“It is gratifying to see Congress presenting legislation that would give a significant reward for information leading to the capture of Naftali Fraenkel’s killer,” said Martin Oliner, president of the Religious Zionists of America (RZA). “Senator Cruz and Representatives Sherman and Lamborn deserve the heartfelt gratitude of the American Jewish community, and of all Americans, for taking this important step for justice.”
In three op-eds published widely in the American Jewish press in late June and early July, RZA national board members Moshe Phillips and Benyamin Korn urged the Obama administration to offer a reward through its Rewards for Justice program (www.rewardsforjustice.net), which advertises multimillion dollar rewards for information leading to the capture of terrorists who harm American citizens abroad.
Phillips and Korn wrote:
“Now that the Israeli government has publicly identified the kidnappers by name, how can the administration justify refusing to offer a reward?…There is simply no excuse in the world for the Obama administration not to offer a reward in the Hamas kidnapping, just as the U.S. offered rewards in [other, similar cases]…Reporters at the daily White House and State Department press briefings should be asking why no reward has been offered. American Jewish leaders should be calling the White House to demand that rewards be offered. Anyone who cares about justice should be calling or writing their Members of Congress to ask the same thing.”
Phillips and Korn also pointed out that although more than 100 Americans have been murdered by Palestinian terrorists since the 1970s, “not one of the more than 100 murdered Americans is even mentioned by name on the U.S. government’s Rewards for Justice” web site…None of the killers are mentioned by name either–even though many of them have been publicly identified by the Israeli government…” and only one of the many attacks in which Americans have been harmed by Palestinian terrorists is even mentioned on the website.