2003 Route 60 Hamas ambush

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On 20 June 2003 Howard (Zvi; Tzvi) Goldstein, age 47, his wife Michal, and Goldstein's parents, Lorraine, 73, and Eugene, 73, Goldstein drove on Route 60 en route to a party in Jerusalem celebrating the wedding of Michal and Zvi Goldstein's son, David, which had taken place on the previous day. Two members of a Hamas cell waiting in ambush on the roadside opened fire with AK-47s, hitting all four occupants of the car. Eugene Goldstein took the steering wheel and to help his injured son drive the car away from the gunmen and drove eight miles for medical help before the car flipped over.[1][2][3][4][5]

Zvi Goldstein, a technical writer who had immigrated from the U.S. to Israel, died of his injuries.[6] Michal Goldstein survived. Lorraine Goldstein survived, although a series of operations to repair her damaged jaw caused by a bullet left her with little motion in her mouth. Eugene Goldstein survived with "a bullet lodged near his heart from (the) ambush."[7] The survivors were taken to Hadassah Medical Center.[8]


Hamas immediately claimed responsibility for the shooting attack.[4][8] This claim, in 2003, was described by the Haaretz newspaper as "surprising," since, according to writer Amos Harel, before the attack, the "militant Islamic organization (Hamas) has almost completely avoided carrying out shootings in the West Bank, focusing instead on using suicide bombers, primarily within the Green Line.[8]

On 21 June, the Israel Defense Forces killed Abdullah Qawasmeh, who was believed to be the senior Hamas commander in the Hebron area.[9][10][11][12]

Immediate impact[edit]

The attack was also described as disruptive to the Road map for peace, an initiative involving United States Secretary of State Colin Powell, who was in Jerusalem at the time of the ambush.[13][14][failed verification][15][failed verification] According to Ian Fisher of the New York Times, the attack was interpreted "as a message to Mr. Powell, the Israelis and its Palestinian supporters that Hamas remains strong and very much active."[6]


In 2004 Lorraine and Eugene Goldstein, who live in Plainview, New York, sued the Arab Bank for laundering money used to fund Hamas terror attacks targeting Israelis, including the attack in which his son, Howard, was killed.[16]

In 2006, the Goldsteins joined a group of 50 American victims of terrorism (survivors or relatives of people murdered by terrorists), suing three large international banks, Crédit Lyonnais, Arab Bank, and NatWest, alleging that all three banks were involved in channeling money to Hamas, which has been listed by the government of the United States as a terrorist organization since 1997.[7] The Anti-Terrorism Act enables American victims of acts of terrorism that take place outside the United States can sue for damages in federal courts.[2][17][5]

In August 2015, Arab Bank agreed to a confidential settlement with hundreds of American victims of terrorism, including the Goldsteins.[2][18]


  1. ^ Dan, Uri (21 June 2003). "N.Y. Heros Sacrifice: Dying, He Drives Kin from Thugs". New York Post. Retrieved 15 August 2015.
  2. ^ a b c Clifford, Stephanie (14 August 2015). "Arab Bank Reaches Settlement in Suit Accusing It of Financing Terrorism". New York Times. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  3. ^ "Israeli-American Motorist Shot and Killed in West Bank". Fox News. AP. 20 June 2003. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  4. ^ a b Dan, Uri (22 June 2003). "Family Gathers for Brooklyn-Born Israeli's Funeral". New York Post. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  5. ^ a b "Suing to stop terror funding". CBS News. 21 April 2013. Retrieved 31 August 2015.
  6. ^ a b Fisher, Ian (21 June 2003). "In Show of Defiance, Hamas Gunmen Kill Israeli Settler". New York Times. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  7. ^ a b Preston, Julia (15 April 2006). "Hurt by Hamas, Americans Sue Banks in U.S." New York Times. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  8. ^ a b c Harel, Amos (22 June 2003). "Man Killed, 3 Hurt in West Bank Shooting". Haaretz. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  9. ^ Harel, Amos (22 June 2003). "Top Hamas Man Killed in Hebron Raid". Haaretz. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  10. ^ Harel, Amos (23 June 2003). "PM: Qawasmeh Killing Was Essential". Haaretz. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  11. ^ "Israel kills Hamas fugitive". World Tribune. 22 June 2003. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  12. ^ "Hamas defies Powell plea". Deseret News. Knight Ridder. 21 June 2003. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  13. ^ Matza, Michael (21 June 2003). "As Powell seeks peace, Hamas kills man A sniper shot a motorist, and the group Powell called "an enemy of peace" claimed the act". Philadelphia Inquirer. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  14. ^ "Powell urges Israelis, Palestinians to move forward". CNN. 20 June 2003. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  15. ^ Segal, Naomi (23 June 2003). "Violence Flares As U.S. Sends Envoys". Jewish Telegraphic Agency. Retrieved 4 September 2015.
  16. ^ Marzulli, John (7 July 2004). "Arab Bank Funneled Terror Funds - Suit". New York Daily News. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  17. ^ Riley, John (22 September 2014). "Jury finds Arab Bank liable in terror attacks in Israel and Palestinian territories". Newsday. Retrieved 16 August 2015.
  18. ^ Fisher, Daniel (13 August 2015). "Jury Will Put A Price On Terrorism -- And Stick A Bank With The Bill". Forbes. Retrieved 13 August 2015.