Lawfare in Action: Attack on US Campaign for Palestinian Rights as a Case Study


In this episode of FMEP’s Occupied Thoughts podcast, FMEP President Lara Friedman speaks with Ahmad Abuznaid (US Campaign for Palestinian Rights – USCPR) and Diala Shamas (Center for Constitutional Rights) about the lawsuit filed by the Jewish National Fund against USCPR — which was dismissed by a U.S. federal judge in March 2021 and is now being appealed — as well as about what can be learned from this case about efforts by pro-Israel actors to instrumentalize and weaponize U.S. laws to target and suppress Palestinian activism and solidarity.

Occupied Thoughts by FMEP · Lawfare in Action: Attack on US Campaign for Palestinian Rights as a Case Study

Recorded February 10, 2023

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Podcasts Participants

Ahmad Abuznaid is the Executive Director of the US Campaign for Palestinian Rights. Prior to joining USCPR, Ahmad co-founded the Florida-based Dream Defenders after the killing of Trayvon Martin, serving as Legal & Policy Director and COO during his time there. Ahmad went on to lead the National Network for Arab American Communities as the Executive Director from 2017 to 2019. Follow his work at: and on Twitter at @A7madAbuznaid  & @USCPR_

Diala Shamas is a Senior Staff Attorney at the Center for Constitutional Rights, where she works on challenging government and law enforcement abuses perpetrated under the guise of national security, both in the U.S. and abroad. Prior to joining the Center for Constitutional Rights, Diala was a Clinical Supervising Attorney and Lecturer in Law at Stanford Law School, and a Senior Staff Attorney supervising the CLEAR (Creating Law Enforcement Accountability & Responsibility) project at CUNY School of Law. Follow her work at: and on Twitter at @theCCR

Resources related to this podcast


The Court Filings

Media Coverage

Round 1 – Case Filed/made public (November 2019)

Round 2 – Case Dismissed (March 2021)

Round 3 – Court of Appeals (January 2023)

Controversy Around the Jewish National Fund

T’ruah campaign: Plant Justice Not Settlements

Peace Now (Israel) 2/12/21: Jewish National Fund to Officially Start Acquiring More Land in the West Bank

Haaretz 7/15/21: Israel Recruited the Jewish National Fund to Secretly Buy Palestinian Land for Settlers

AP 2/23/21: Jews split over storied charity’s support for settlements

Axios 2/11/21: Scoop: Jewish National Fund plans to pour millions into expanding West Bank settlements