The Woman behind a Notorious Suicide Bombing Walks Free. Will America See That She Is Punished?

On August 9, 2001, Ahlam Tamimi and Izz al-Din Shuheil al-Masri traveled from the West Bank to Jerusalem, where Masri detonated himself in a Sbarro’s pizzeria, killing seven children and eight adults, and injuring scores. When the two passed through an Israeli checkpoint earlier that day, they appeared to be a young couple; had Masri been alone, police almost certainly would have stopped him and discovered the deadly bomb in his guitar case. Tamimi was arrested shortly thereafter and sentenced to life in prison. Ten years later, she was among the 1,027 Palestinian prisoners exchanged for the captured Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit. She now resides in Jordan.

Drawing on an interview with Frimet and Arnold Roth, whose daughter Malki was among Tamimi’s victims, David Horovitz recounts their ongoing struggle for justice:

The judges put on the record their recommendation that she never be released, [but] Tamimi—the woman who scouted the location for the attack, escorted the suicide bomber to ensure the atrocity went ahead, and speaks of the bombing as “my operation”—has thrived, has been allowed to thrive. She has been able to marry [her cousin, who murdered a young Israeli in 1993], to talk of starting a family, and to become something of a celebrity on the strength of her murderous exploits, while expressing regret only that more people were not killed. She cast their lives into darkness. But hers has been bright.

She traveled widely and often within Jordan and to numerous Arab countries—including repeat visits to Algeria, Kuwait, Lebanon, Qatar, Tunisia, and Yemen—speaking to school and university groups, trade unions, and on TV—boasting of her central role in the massacre, of the high death toll and of her intention to kill Jewish children, preferably religiously observant.

Arnold would argue that governments that seek to defeat terrorism must refuse to release convicted terrorists from prisons since this emboldens them and their colleagues. By nurturing the belief that their demands are likely to be met in the future, he would argue, you encourage terrorist blackmail of the very kind that you want to stop. Only the most unrelenting refusal ever to give in to such blackmail can prevent this.

The Roths have used Malki’s American citizenship to lobby the government to bring Tamimi to the U.S.—which has an extradition treaty with Jordan—for trial. While Washington has been slow to act, last year Congressman Scott Perry of Pennsylvania succeeded in passing legislation that would deny aid to countries like Jordan that refuse to extradite residents indicted for severe criminal offenses:

Along with the simple principle of justice, Congressman Perry . . . raised another central point when considering the balance between pushing Jordan hard for Tamimi’s extradition and preserving Jordan’s internal stability: the imperative that neither Jordan, nor any other country for that matter, be permitted to turn itself into a safe haven for terrorists.

What will come of the new law remains to be seen.

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Read more at Times of Israel

More about: Jordan, Palestinian terror, Second Intifada, U.S. Foreign policy

Don’t Let Iran Go Nuclear

Sept. 29 2022

In an interview on Sunday, National Security Advisor Jake Sullivan stated that the Biden administration remains committed to nuclear negotiations with the Islamic Republic, even as it pursues its brutal crackdown on the protests that have swept the country. Robert Satloff argues not only that it is foolish to pursue the renewal of the 2015 nuclear deal, but also that the White House’s current approach is failing on its own terms:

[The] nuclear threat is much worse today than it was when President Biden took office. Oddly, Washington hasn’t really done much about it. On the diplomatic front, the administration has sweetened its offer to entice Iran into a new nuclear deal. While it quite rightly held firm on Iran’s demand to remove the Islamic Revolutionary Guard Corps from an official list of “foreign terrorist organizations,” Washington has given ground on many other items.

On the nuclear side of the agreement, the United States has purportedly agreed to allow Iran to keep, in storage, thousands of advanced centrifuges it has made contrary to the terms of the original deal. . . . And on economic matters, the new deal purportedly gives Iran immediate access to a certain amount of blocked assets, before it even exports most of its massive stockpile of enriched uranium for safekeeping in a third country. . . . Even with these added incentives, Iran is still holding out on an agreement. Indeed, according to the most recent reports, Tehran has actually hardened its position.

Regardless of the exact reason why, the menacing reality is that Iran’s nuclear program is galloping ahead—and the United States is doing very little about it. . . . The result has been a stunning passivity in U.S. policy toward the Iran nuclear issue.

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Read more at Washington Institute for Near East Policy

More about: Iran nuclear deal, Joseph Biden, U.S. Foreign policy