Civil trial in Corrie death opens


JERUSALEM (JTA) — A civil trial in the death of American activist Rachel Corrie by an Israeli military bulldozer opened in Haifa.

Some 40 protesters demonstrated outside the courthouse Wednesday, the first day of the trial, carrying signs reading "Remember Rachel Corrie."

Her parents reportedly are demanding $324,000 in damages from the Israel Defense Forces.

Members of U.S. Vice President Joe Biden’s entourage met Tuesday with the Corrie family, Haaretz reported. The Corries and four witnesses who were with their daughter when she was killed are currently in Israel.

Corrie, 23, of Olympia, Wash., was wearing an orange vest and attempting to stop a bulldozer from demolishing a Palestinian home when she was killed seven years ago.

An Israeli army investigation following Corrie’s death found that the driver of the bulldozer did not intentionally run her over because he could not see the activist. The report accused Corrie and the pro-Palestinian International Solidarity Movement of "illegal, irresponsible and dangerous" behavior.

Witnesses say that Corrie was clearly visible and that activists shouted for the bulldozer to stop before it hit her.

The Corries sued Caterpillar Inc., the U.S. company that manufactured the bulldozer, but lost in court. 

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