Shimon Samuels
Shimon Samuels

Today 27th Commemoration of AMIA Bombing

In 2006, a Franco-Palestinian organization sued me for defamation. I needed bona fides for my defence

Among them was Hector Timerman, then Argentine Ambassador to the United Nations. He wrote about my visit to his father, Jacobo, during the military dictatorship. He added that this had helped him to find shelter in Israel

In 2013, then Minister of Foreign Affairs, he called me to say that he had been implicated in a memorandum with Iran to forget the AMIA bombing in exchange for an exchange of large sums for Argentine ‘purchases’. He protested this as a lie

What I then termed ‘the massacre’s 86th victim’ was the Prosecutor, Alberto Nisman, who accused then-President Christina Kirshner as responsible for the Memorandum

The morning in 2015 that Nisman was to reveal evidence in the Argentine Congress, he was murdered in his Buenos Aires apartment. Kirshner insisted it was suicide.

A few weeks before his death, we made a dinner for him in London, with a few interested friends. He shared with us his file on Hezbollah sleepers and operatives in none South American and Caribbean countries, especially in the Triple Frontier between Argentina,Brazil and Paraguay.

Nisman was jubilant and certainly not suicidal

Over the years, the INTERPOL Red arrest notices — so well served for our mentor Simon Wiesenthal in hunting Nazi criminals – now applied to six Iranian suspects. I had advised the press that they might be confined to ‘visit the family’ in Saudi Arabia, Venezuela and their allies

In 2018, we organized, with the Henry Jackson Society and the Argentine Ambassador to the United Kingdom, a meeting at the British Parliament
We invited an Argentine lawyer, an AMIA survivor and a jurist expert on extradition. We wished to ensure that if any listed Red notices arrive on British soil,they would be detained, pending extradition for trial in Argentina.This was the period of President Macri

With the return of the Peronists and Cristina as vice president, such a trial would be improbable.

The same goes for the investigation into the murder of Nisman

Once again there are efforts for a trial. Timerman passed away and Cristina has immunity

Each year at 9.53 am, the moment of the blast, the families of the 85 dead and more than 300 wounded commemorate without consolation.

We must also not forget the 29 dead in the 1992 Buenos Aires bombing of the Israeli Embassy, also implicating Iran.

Justice so long delayed is justice denied

About the Author
Shimon Samuels is Director for International Relations of the Simon Wiesenthal Center. He has served as Deputy Director of the Leonard Davis Institute for International Relations at Hebrew University of Jerusalem, European Director of ADL, and Israel Director of AJC. He was born in UK and studied in UK, Israel, U.S. and Japan.
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