Eighteen years ago, on August 9, female terrorist Ahlam Tamimi smuggled a bomb in a guitar case into Jerusalem and led a suicide bomber to the crowded Sbarro pizza shop in Jerusalem’s city center.
Suicide terrorist Izz Al-Din Al-Masri ate a slice of pizza and then blew himself up, murdering 15 people, seven of them children, and wounding close to 130 others.
“I have no regrets,” Tamimi told Channel 1 TV in an interview that was recently rebroadcast on Palestinian Authority TV. “No Palestinian prisoner regrets what he or she has done.”
Since that fateful day, in which two Americans – Malki Roth and Shoshana Yehudit Greenbaum – were among the murdered, the PA has paid the seven terrorists who helped orchestrate the attack as well as Al-Masri’s family $910,823 (3.2 million shekels), according to a report released Thursday by Palestinian Media Watch.
These payments include monthly salaries paid to the terrorists in prison; payments to the family of the dead terrorist; and payments to the terrorists, like Tamimi, who were released in the 2011 Gilad Shalit prisoner exchange deal, brokered between the Israeli government and Hamas.
Today, the PA pays $7,321 (NIS 25,800) per month to the Sbarro terrorists and their families, according to PMW.
Al-Masri’s family has received a total of $53,689, PMW reported. The bomb maker, Abdullah Barghouti, has received $213,848 and Tamimi received $51,836 until she was released and fled to Jordan.
Tamimi is on America’s “Most Wanted Terrorist” list, but the US has been unable to extradite her from Jordan. In March 2017, the country’s top court refused to hand her over to the US because a 1995 extradition agreement between the two countries was never ratified by the Jordanian parliament.
In a recent interview with Al-Jazeera, Tamimi said she cannot understand why the US wants to extradite her or why she is defined as a terrorist.
“I’m part of an independence movement, a national liberation movement, a resistance movement acting for its freedom,” she said this March. “Why are we defined as ‘terror’? Why is Ahlam defined as a ‘terrorist?’”
She noted that while the US demand to rearrest her has “shaken our lives to a certain extent... my being in Jordan strengthens me, as there is no extradition agreement between Jordan and the US.”
Tamimi was charged by the US with “conspiring to use a weapon of mass destruction against US nationals outside the US, resulting in death.”
In 2017, acting Assistant Attorney-General for National Security Mary McCord called Tamimi, “an unrepentant terrorist who admitted to her role in a deadly terrorist bombing that injured and killed numerous innocent victims.”
The most-wanted flyer describes her as “armed and dangerous.”
Tamimi herself described her actions in an interview aired in 2011 where she explained that she had examined the Sbarro restaurant for nine days ahead of the attack and that she chose the location carefully based on its large number of patrons.
“I didn’t want to blow [myself] up, I didn’t want to carry out a martyrdom-seeking operation,” she said. “My mission was just to choose the place and to bring the martyrdom-seeker.
“[I made] the general plan of the operation, but carrying it out was entrusted to the martyrdom-seeker,” she continued… I told him to enter the restaurant, eat a meal, and then after 15 minutes carry out the martyrdom-seeking operation.
“During the quarter of an hour, I would return the same way that I had arrived. Then I bade him farewell. He went inside, crossed the road and went to the restaurant, and I went back the way that I had come.
“My job was to realize, for this Martyrdom-seeker, the happy life that he wanted,” she concluded.
The results of her actions were the deaths of Roth, Greenbaum, Tehila Maoz, Frieda Mendelsohn, Tamara and Lily Shimashvili, Giora Balash, Michal Raziel, Zvika Golombek, Yocheved Shoshan and members of the Schijeschuurder family: Mordechai, Tzira, Ra’aya, Avraham Yitzchak and Hemda.
“The Palestinian Authority glorifies all its terrorists, including child murderers and suicide bombers, as heroes,” explained Maurice Hirsch, PMW’s head of legal strategies in a related release. “In addition to granting the terrorist prisoners a monthly salary, the 2004 PA Law of Prisoners and Released Prisoners prohibits the PA from signing any peace agreement that does not include the release of all the Palestinian terrorists, including the child-murderers who carried out this attack.”
In 2018, the PA admitted to spending $134 million in salary payments to terrorists. Currently, every terrorist salary starts at a minimum of NIS 1,400 per month and can reach as much as NIS 12,000 month after 30 years.