The National Building Museum has cancelled a Sept. 14 public ceremony to honor Caterpillar Inc. with this year's Henry C. Turner Prize after a U.S.-based Middle East peace advocacy group demanded the award be rescinded. At issue is the Israel Defense Forces' alleged use of Caterpillar bulldozers to destroy Palestinian settlements in the West Bank and Gaza. Civilians were killed during the operation. The museum declined the group's request to rescind.
Cat has “been on notice that these bulldozers are used for human-rights violations,” says Craig Corrie, head of the Olympia, Wash.-based Rachel Corrie Foundation for Peace and Justice, which protested the award in an August letter to the museum. Corrie's 23-year-old daughter, Rachel, died in 2003 when an IDF dozer operator ran over her. “When you give out these awards, you need to think about how these machines are used.”