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On Women’s Day Fatah presented its heroic women - a child murderer, a plane hijacker, and other terrorists

Nan Jacques Zilberdik  |
  • PA Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh chose to highlight the PA’s terror mom, Um Nasser Abu Hmeid, whose “achievement” is being the mother of 6 terrorists responsible for at least 10 murders

  • PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas chose to stress Palestinian women’s “heroic role in the struggle,” addressing women in their roles as “mother, sister, daughter, wife, friend, prisoner, wounded, Martyr”

  • Fatah: “On March 8 the entire world, and particularly the Palestinian people... celebrate Women’s Day in appreciation for the effort and sacrifices Palestinian women have made. Martyr Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., led murder of 37) joined Fatah in 1973 and commanded the Kamal Adwan operation… in which over 30 Israelis were killed… Fighter Theresa Halsa (i.e., terrorist hijacker)… enlisted to [Fatah’s] Black September. She participated in the operation to hijack a Sabena plane carrying Israeli passengers… Fatima Barnawi (i.e., terrorist, placed bomb in movie theater)… participated in the movie theater operation in 1967”

  • “There were prominent names in the Palestinian struggle’s history such as female fighter Theresa Halsa, Rima Issa [Tannous] (i.e., terrorist plane hijackers), Shadia Abu Ghazaleh (i.e., terrorist bombmaker), Reem Riyashi (i.e., suicide bomber, murdered 4), Fatima Al-Najjar (i.e., suicide bomber, wounded 3), Ayyat Al-Akhras (i.e., suicide bomber, murdered 2), Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children), Laila Khaled (i.e., terrorist plane hijacker, involved in murder of 1), Martyr Zakiya Shammout (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1)” – article in official PA daily

On the recent occasion of International Women’s Day, Abbas’ Fatah Movement stressed that its heroic women remain murderers, hijackers, and other terrorists.

In a video posted by Fatah and produced by Fatah-run Awdah TV, photos of women terrorists appeared accompanied by text on screen praising their “accomplishments,” including how many Israelis were killed in one of the terrorists’ attack. The female role models chosen by Fatah are:

Dalal Mughrabi – led the most lethal terror attack in Israel’s history, in which she and other Fatah terrorists murdered 37 civilians, 12 of them children, in 1978.

Theresa Halsa – was a member of the Black September terror organization and participated in the hijacking of Sabena flight 571 in 1972.

Fatima Barnawi – placed a bomb in a movie theater in Jerusalem in 1967.

Text on screen: “On March 8 the entire world, and particularly the Palestinian people... celebrate Women’s Day in appreciation for the effort and sacrifices Palestinian women have made.”

Martyr Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., led murder of 37) joined Fatah in 1973 and commanded the Kamal Adwan operation… in which over 30 Israelis were killed. She died as a Martyr in 1978 during the operation. She was called ‘The Bride of Jaffa.’”

Fighter Theresa Halsa (i.e., terrorist hijacker) joined Fatah in 1972 and enlisted to Black September. She participated in the operation to hijack a Sabena plane carrying Israeli passengers” ...

Fatima Barnawi (i.e., terrorist, placed bomb in movie theater)… joined Fatah in the mid-1960s. She participated in the movie theater operation in 1967. She is the first female Palestinian who was imprisoned in the Israeli prisons.”

[Facebook page of the Fatah Commission of Information and Culture, March 8, 2022]

Fatah introduced the video glorifying these women terrorists with the following text on Facebook:

Posted text: “Palestinian women have led in all fields of the struggle, have made sacrifices, and with their greatness have written the letters of Palestine’s identity.
All the best to the Palestinian women every year.
#International_Women’s_Day”

[Facebook page of the Fatah Commission of Information and Culture, March 8, 2022]

Another post on the same Fatah Facebook page included the image below of female terrorists Dalal Mughrabi, terrorist who led murder of 37, Theresa Halsa, terrorist hijacker, and Israa Ja’abis, a bomber who wounded 1. Text posted with the image linked the terrorists to the concepts of “pride and honor”:

Posted text: “Every year may the Palestinian women bring pride and honor to the homeland and provide it with freedom
#International_Women’s_Day
Which takes place tomorrow [March 8, 2022]”

Text on image: “International Women’s Day
March 8, 2022
The Palestinian women are the symbol of sacrifice and resolve
[Fatah radio station] Radio Mawtini”

[Facebook page of the Fatah Commission of Information and Culture, March 7, 2022]

In a seemingly innocent TV report on Palestinian women’s successes in different fields, the PA followed suit, adding to its report a picture of terrorist murderer Dalal Mughrabi while the reporter said the following:

Official PA TV reporter: “You find them [Palestinian women] excelling in all fields: in politics, economy, society, culture, arts, and science. They preserve the spark as they are an icon of resolve and defiance, because they are creative and productive.”

Picture on screen of terrorist Dalal Mughrabi who led the murder of 37.

Text on screen: “The Palestinian women, a history full of sacrifice”

 [Official PA TV News, March 8, 2022]

On Women’s Day, PA Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh chose to highlight the PA’s terror mom Um Nasser Abu Hmeid, who is the mother of 6 terrorists responsible for at least 10 murders. While he did mention that Palestinian women have excelled and “recorded many tangible achievements in the local and international arenas in the fields of medicine, engineering, agriculture, sport, music, and all fields of life,” Shtayyeh and the official PA daily mentioned only Abu Hmeid by name:

PM Shtayyeh: “[Palestinian women] are represented in the Palestinian institutions, in the [PA] government, in the [PA] Parliament (Legislative Council), in the [Palestinian] National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO), and in the [PLO] Central Council, and they are the mothers of the Martyrs and the prisoners. Um Nasser [Abu] Hmeid (i.e., mother of 6 terrorists responsible for at least 10 murders; see note below) is an example of a woman who is fighting and standing firm, and so are the mothers of the Martyrs, the prisoners, and the expelled.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 9, 2022]

PA Chairman Abbas similarly focused on Palestinian women’s role “in the struggle”:

Abbas: “My sisters and daughters, you who have recorded the most glorious achievements in all fields and proven to the men that you are worthy in the darkest circumstances and periods that have befallen and are still befalling the homeland. We are proud of your standing hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder, fulfilling your heroic role in the struggle.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 8, 2022]

Abbas continued, like Shtayyeh, to highlight the “roles” of women terrorists: “prisoner, wounded, Martyr”, and only after that mentioned women’s careers in general in different professional fields:

Abbas: “O mother, sister, daughter, wife, friend, prisoner, wounded, Martyr, mother of the family! O you who work in the political, economic, social, communications, cultural, educational, and other fields – we salute you, send you greetings, and give you our thanks.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 8, 2022]

The PA also devoted several column inches to Deputy Chairman of the Retired Palestinian PA Army Personnel in Lebanon Organization, Faisal Abu Mustafa, who singled out several female terrorists as “role models,” including 3 suicide bombers:

“[Former PLO Chairman and PA] President Yasser Arafat strengthened the women’s role, and there were prominent names in the Palestinian struggle’s history such as female fighter Theresa Halsa, Rima Issa [Tannous] (i.e., terrorist plane hijackers), Shadia Abu Ghazaleh (i.e., terrorist bombmaker), Reem Riyashi (i.e., suicide bomber, murdered 4), Fatima Al-Najjar (i.e., suicide bomber, wounded 3), Ayyat Al-Akhras (i.e., suicide bomber, murdered 2), Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children), Laila Khaled (i.e., terrorist plane hijacker, involved in murder of 1), Martyr Zakiya Shammout (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1) who gave birth to her son in the occupation’s prison, and other women who sacrificed themselves to defend Palestine.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 8, 2022]

Significantly, the writer also chose to mention only women terrorists by name, before mentioning in passing that other women have made careers in regular professions without naming any of them:

“Currently the Palestinian women are in all fields of activity and are excelling in their work. Among them are doctors, engineers, and poets. They have reached important positions in many states and not just in Palestine. They have penetrated the gates of the American Congress, the Israeli Parliament, and many international organizations and institutions.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 8, 2022]

Senior PA official Jibril Rajoub also chose to highlight Palestinian women’s role in terror in his post on International Women’s Day, stressing their role as “Martyr, prisoner, fighter,” and posting a poster with an image of a woman throwing a rock

Posted text: “All the best to the women of Palestine and the world every year
#International_Women’s_Day”

Text on image: “March 8 [2022]
The Palestinian women
The mother, the sister, the Martyr, the prisoner, the fighter
All the best to the women of Palestine and the world every year”

[Facebook page of Fatah Central Committee Secretary Jibril Rajoub, March 8, 2022]

In the Jenin district, International Women’s Day was marked by the opening of the Prisoner Mothers Park, in which seedlings were named after imprisoned female terrorists:

Official PA TV newsreader: “The popular committee [to provide services in the Jenin refugee camp] and the civil society institutions in the Jenin district held a ceremony honoring a number of mothers of Martyrs and prisoners for March 8, International Women’s Day, and during the activity the Prisoner Mothers Park in the town of Ya’abad was inaugurated with the planting of flowers and a seedling named after each of these female prisoners.”

[Official PA TV News, March 7, 2022]

Among the female prisoners that the park honors are Iman Al-A’war from Jerusalem, who transferred money for the Hamas terror organization, and Attaf Jaradat from Jenin, who was arrested on Dec. 27, 2021 for knowingly not preventing her terrorist sons Omar and Ghaith Jaradat from taking part in the murder of one. Official PA TV showed pictures of the two female prisoners on the screen.

But it is not just on International Women’s Day that the PA emphasizes the worth of women who carried out acts of terror against Israel. While a PA TV narrator praised women terrorists and a murderer, a Fatah activist interviewed on the program glorified a suicide bomber as a “mighty woman”:

Official PA TV narrator: “The acts of heroism by the Palestinian women continued, especially after the launch of the modern Palestinian revolution at the start of 1965 (i.e., counted from Fatah’s first terror attack against Israel), through female Martyr Shadia Abu Ghazaleh (i.e., bombmaker), female fighter Fatima Barnawi (i.e., placed bomb in movie theater), self-sacrificing fighter Zakiya Shammout (i.e., involved in murder of 1), female Martyr Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., led murder of 37), female fighter Laila Khaled (i.e., hijacker, involved in murder of 1), and the list is long.” …

Fatah activist from Jerusalem Jihad Zneid: “The women are worthy of great honor. The women who defied the occupier… I’m speaking about Wafa Idris (i.e., suicide bomber, murdered 1). When I speak about [myself and Palestinian female director] Terry Balata, when I speak about mighty women, I speak about the women who are active at all levels, women who lead, women who not only participated in political activity but also led political activity, women who fought, women who are full of initiative.”

[Official PA TV, Stories from Palestine, Jan. 22, 2022]

Palestinian Media Watch has exposed the PA and Fatah’s role modeling of female terrorists to the Palestinian public and especially to girls and women for decades. The most prominent role model is murderer Dalal Mughrabi. In fact, the PA’s Minister of Women’s Affairs has cited murderer Mughrabi and other “female Martyrs” as proof of gender equality in Palestinian society.

The following are more details on the terrorists mentioned above and longer excerpts of the statements cited:

Dalal Mughrabi – female Palestinian terrorist who led the most lethal terror attack in Israel’s history, known as the Coastal Road massacre, in 1978, when she and other Fatah terrorists hijacked a bus on Israel's Coastal Highway, murdering 37 civilians, 12 of them children, and wounding over 70.

Theresa Halsa – 17-year-old female Israeli Arab terrorist and a member of the Black September terror organization, a secret branch of Fatah, who participated in the hijacking of Sabena flight 571 from Vienna to Tel Aviv in May 1972. When the plane landed in Israel, the terrorists demanded the release of 315 Palestinian terrorists from Israeli prisons. Israel mounted a rescue operation led by Ehud Barak (who later served as Israeli Prime Minister), in which Benjamin Netanyahu (who also later served as Israeli Prime Minister) participated. During the rescue the two male hijackers, Ali Taha Abu Snina and Abed Al-Aziz Atrash, were killed, and one passenger, 22-year-old Miriam Anderson, was also killed accidentally. The two female hijackers, Rima Tannous and Theresa Halsa, were captured and sentenced to life imprisonment – Halsa for 220 years. They were released in November 1983 in a prisoner exchange. Halsa was expelled to Jordan where she lived until she died of cancer on March 28, 2020.

Fatima Barnawi - Palestinian female terrorist who placed a bomb in a movie theater in Jerusalem in 1967. The bomb failed to explode. She was sentenced to life in prison but was released in 1977 after serving 10 years. In 2015, PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas honored Barnawi with the Military Star of Honor.

Israa Ja’abis – 31-year-old female Palestinian terrorist, resident of East Jerusalem, who carried out a car bomb attack near Ma’ale Adumim, a few kilometers east of Jerusalem, on Oct. 11, 2015. A policeman who noticed a suspicious vehicle signaled for the driver to stop, after which she drove closer to a group of police officers and detonated a gas balloon. One policeman suffered light injuries and Ja’abis was seriously injured. 

Um Nasser Abu Hmeid – Palestinian woman famous and admired in the PA for being the mother of 5 terrorist prisoners serving life sentences (4 of them serving multiple life sentences), and another whom the PA refers to as a "Martyr." Abu Hmeid is also called Khansa of Palestine, which refers to Al-Khansa from the earliest period of Islam who sent her four sons to battle and rejoiced when they all died as Martyrs. Abu Hmeid was honored by the PA in 2010 and 2015, and was chosen in 2011 to launch the PA’s statehood campaign with the UN. Her terrorist sons: Islam Yusuf Abu Hmeid, murdered 1 on May 24, 2018, and is serving life in prison and an additional 8 months; Muhammad Abu Hmeid, serving 2 life sentences and 30 years for involvement in terror attacks; Nasser Abu Hmeid, serving 7 life sentences and 50 years for murdering 7 Israeli civilians and 12 attempted murders; Nasr Abu Hmeid, serving 5 life sentences for involvement in two terror attacks in which 4 were murdered, and arms dealing; Sharif Abu Hmeid, serving 4 life sentences for involvement in terror attacks in which 4 were murdered; Abd Al-Mun'im Muhammad Yusuf Naji Abu Hmeid, murdered 1 on Feb. 13, 1994, and was killed by Israel on May 31, 1994.

Muhammad, Mahmoud, Ghaith, and Omar Jaradat – Palestinian terrorists who murdered 25-year-old Israeli Yehuda Dimentman in a shooting attack near Homesh, west of Nablus, on Dec. 16, 2021. Two other Israelis were wounded in the attack. Israel arrested the four terrorists and seized two M-16 semi-automatic assault rifles from them on Dec. 19, 2021. The four are still on trial as of Feb. 28, 2022.

Shadia Abu Ghazaleh - Female Palestinian terrorist and member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) terror organization who prepared bombs for many attacks against Israel. While she was preparing a bomb for an attack in Tel Aviv in 1968, it accidentally detonated and killed her.

Zakiya Shammout – Palestinian terrorist involved in several attacks including the placing of a bomb in the Afula market on Oct. 6, 1969, murdering 1 and injuring dozens. Shammout was sentenced to life in prison, but was released in a prisoner exchange deal in 1983 and deported to Algeria. She died in 2014.

Laila Khaled - Palestinian terrorist and member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) who participated in the hijacking of TWA flight 840 from Rome to Athens on Aug. 29, 1969 and the hijacking of El Al flight 219 from Amsterdam to New York on Sept. 6, 1970. The second hijacking was averted by the pilot and security personnel on board. They shot Khaled’s accomplice, Patrick Argüello, who had murdered one of the flight attendants. Khaled was overpowered and the plane landed in London, where Khaled was handed over and held by British police until she was exchanged on Oct. 1, 1970 for hostages held by the PFLP.

Wafa Idris - The first Palestinian female suicide bomber. Belonging to Fatah, she blew herself up on Jaffa Road in central Jerusalem on Jan. 27, 2002, killing 1 and wounding over 100. As a volunteer for the Palestinian Red Crescent she was able to bypass Israeli security and enter Jerusalem in a Palestinian ambulance.

Jibril Rajoub also serves as Head of the PLO Supreme Council for Youth and Sports, Chairman of the Palestinian Football Association, Chairman of the Palestine Olympic Committee, and Chairman of the Palestinian Scout Association (PSA).

Headline: “Shtayyeh: We will advance towards ratifying all the legislation and laws that will do justice with the women and give them their rights”

“[PA] Prime Minister Muhammad Shtayyeh said: ‘On the instructions of His Honor [PA] President Mahmoud Abbas, we will advance towards ratifying all the legislation and laws that will do justice with the women and give them their rights.’

The prime minister added: ‘The Palestinian women are fighting to receive their rights, and this is something that we encourage and support, for after all they are represented in the Palestinian institutions, in the [PA] government, in the [PA] Parliament (Legislative Council), in the [Palestinian] National Council (i.e., the legislative body of the PLO), and in the [PLO] Central Council, and they are the mothers of the Martyrs and the prisoners. Um Nasser [Abu] Hmeid (i.e., mother of terrorists responsible for at least 10 murders; see note below) is an example of a woman who is fighting and standing firm, and so are the mothers of the Martyrs, the prisoners, and the expelled.’

Shtayyeh said this during a speech at a ceremony honoring a number of Palestinian women who are leading and excelling in several fields. The ceremony was organized by the European Union (EU) to celebrate International Women’s Day yesterday [March 8, 2022] at the Ramallah Theater, in the presence of Ramallah and El-Bireh District Governor Laila Ghannam and EU Representative in Palestine Sven Kuehn von Burgsdorff…

Shtayyeh congratulated the women, and particularly the Palestinian women, on their day. He thanked the EU for sponsoring the ceremony and all those who are taking care of the Palestinian women who have recorded many tangible achievements in the local and international arenas in the fields of medicine, engineering, agriculture, sport, music, and all fields of life.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 9, 2022]

Headline: “The [PA] president on International Women’s Day: We emphasize our commitment to providing women with their full rights in all fields”

The following is an excerpt of a speech given by PA Chairman Mahmoud Abbas on International Women’s Day -Ed.

“We are happy today [March 8, 2022] to salute and express our appreciation for the lauded Palestinian women and all the women of the world for International Women’s Day, which was set by the UN as proof of their status and honor, and out of appreciation for their economic, political, social, and scientific achievements.

My sisters and daughters, you who have recorded the most glorious achievements in all fields and proven to the men that you are worthy in the darkest circumstances and periods that have befallen and are still befalling the homeland. We are proud of your standing hand in hand, shoulder to shoulder, fulfilling your heroic role in the struggle.

O mother, sister, daughter, wife, friend, prisoner, wounded, Martyr, mother of the family! O you who work in the political, economic, social, communications, cultural, educational, and other fields – we salute you, send you greetings, and give you our thanks. Whoever said you are half of the society did not do justice with you, as without you the society would not be a good and healthy society…

We emphasize our commitment to providing women with their full rights in all fields, in a way that will enable them to receive opportunities, to realize themselves, to increase their participation in all fields including teaching, health, law, economy, politics, and also to participate in the decision-making process.”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 8, 2022]

Headline: “The Palestinian women”

“Deputy Chairman of the Retired Palestinian [PA] Army Personnel in Lebanon [Organization] Faisal Abu Mustafa describes [the Palestinian women] as ‘a role model in all arenas and fields.’

Abu Mustafa commented on the status of women in Palestinian society historically and said: ‘This is documented in the archives. The gates of knowledge were open to them, especially in the cities. In Palestine there were private schools for young women and colleges that trained female teachers and educators. The Palestinian women integrated in the social, political, and economic affairs at an early stage. Even in the rural areas, the women and men went hand in hand.’

He noted: ‘This is the nature of the pluralist Palestinian society, which no one can deny… If we go back to the start of the struggle with the Zionist movement, the Palestinian women had a central and direct role. They carried weapons and dealt with transferring them, and also transferring messages between the battlefronts. They took care of the self-sacrificing fighters and even gave them medical treatment.’

Abu Mustafa continued: ‘[Former PLO Chairman and PA] President Yasser Arafat strengthened the women’s role, and there were prominent names in the Palestinian struggle’s history such as female fighter Theresa Halsa, Rima Issa [Tannous] (i.e., terrorist plane hijackers), Shadia Abu Ghazaleh (i.e., terrorist bombmaker), Reem Riyashi (i.e., suicide bomber, murdered 4), Fatima Al-Najjar (i.e., suicide bomber, wounded 3), Ayyat Al-Akhras (i.e., suicide bomber, murdered 2), Dalal Mughrabi (i.e., terrorist who led murder of 37, 12 of them children), Laila Khaled (i.e., terrorist plane hijacker, involved in murder of 1), Martyr Zakiya Shammout (i.e., terrorist, murdered 1) who gave birth to her son in the occupation’s prison, and other women who sacrificed themselves to defend Palestine.’ …

He added: ‘Currently the Palestinian women are in all fields of activity and are excelling in their work. Among them are doctors, engineers, and poets. They have reached important positions in many states and not just in Palestine. They have penetrated the gates of the American Congress, the Israeli Parliament, and many international organizations and institutions.’”

[Official PA daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, March 8, 2022]

Hijacking of Sabena Flight 571 – Four PLO terrorists – Ali Taha Abu Snina, Abed Al-Aziz Atrash, Rima Tannous, and Theresa Halsa – hijacked Sabena Flight 571 from Vienna to Tel Aviv on May 8, 1972, taking the 90 passengers and 10 crew members hostage and separating the Jewish and Israeli passengers from the other passengers on the plane. When the plane landed in Lod Airport in Israel, the terrorists demanded that Israel release 315 Palestinian terrorist prisoners or else they would blow up the plane. The hijacking was planned by Ali Hassan Salameh, commander of operations in Europe of the Black September terror organization – a secret branch of Fatah. Israel mounted a rescue operation led by Ehud Barak (who later served as Israeli Prime Minister), in which Benjamin Netanyahu (who also later served as Israeli Prime Minister) participated. During the rescue, one passenger, 22-year-old Miriam Anderson, was killed, as were the two male hijackers, Abu Snina and Atrash. The two female hijackers, Tannous and Halsa, were captured and sentenced to life imprisonment, but were released in November 1983 in a prisoner exchange deal in which Fatah released 6 captive Israeli soldiers and Israel released 4,700 terrorists held in Lebanon and 65 terrorists held in Israel.

Reem Riyashi – Palestinian female suicide bomber who carried out a suicide attack at the Erez crossing between Israel and the Gaza Strip on Jan. 14, 2004, murdering 3 soldiers and one civilian.

Fatima Al-Najjar – 57-year-old female Palestinian terrorist and Hamas suicide bomber who approached Israeli soldiers to attack them near Jabaliya in the Gaza Strip on Nov. 23, 2006. When she did not stop when they ordered her to, they realized she was a terrorist given intel they had about an impending attack and threw a grenade at her that apparently detonated her bomb belt. Al-Najjar was killed in the blast and three soldiers were wounded.

Ayyat Al-Akhras - The youngest female Palestinian suicide bomber (aged 17). A member of Fatah, Al-Akhras carried out a suicide bombing attack near a Jerusalem supermarket on March 29, 2002, murdering 2 and wounding 28.