Background: The Rose file - singular and pathological

Horrifying case defies categorization.

Ron Ronnie rose grandfather 224 88 (photo credit: Channel 10)
Ron Ronnie rose grandfather 224 88
(photo credit: Channel 10)
If the notorious murder of two-year-old Hodaya Kedem from Jerusalem by her father, Eli Pimstein, in December 2002, was profoundly shocking, the apparent slaying of little Rose from Netanya is described by experts as still more singular and pathological. Dr. Tovah Lichtenstein, a retired senior lecturer from Bar-Ilan University who studies violent parents, sketches three profiles of parents who are capable of murdering their own children: violent parents who are not aware of their strength in comparison to helpless children and who unintentionally kill them; parents who experience a psychotic episode and kill their children out of madness; and parents who are in profound conflict with their partners and find that hurting the child is one way to prove their superiority, by hurting the most important thing in their partners' lives. Hodaya Kedem's murder was an example of the latter scenario, Lichtenstein said. Rose's case defies categorization. "All parents who end up murdering their children suffer from a profound narcissism. These people can't see or consider anyone else's needs. They fail to feel compassion for helpless beings," she said. Raising children requires an ability to defer one's own needs while waiting, patiently, for the youngsters to become a source of pride, happiness and satisfaction by growing up well, Lichtenstein said. Rose's grandfather Ronnie Ron, who is suspected for murdering her, reportedly suffered violence while growing up. He brought a child into the world, Rose's father, Benjamin, whom he disowned. When Ron had the chance to make up for the lost years, his son came to Israel with his wife, Marie, and their daughter Rose, Ron didn't have a problem with "stealing" his son's wife. Prof. Simha Landau of the Institute of Criminology at the Hebrew University said he thought Rose's mother and stepfather had channeled all their anger and frustrations onto Rose because she reminded them of their sins. "It is clearly a case of a person [Ronnie Ron] who suffers from a pathological personality and psychopathic characteristics. He crossed so many social and moral lines and his life seems like the life of a man who gave in to his instincts and who has no limits," Landau said. The mother seemed to be immature, dependent and impulsive, he added. Both experts said the case was a rare one, but they agreed that pathological behavior, even if it was completely legal, should ring warning bells. "Many parents feel like they want to slap their children every once in a while, but there is difference between slapping and murdering," Lichtenstein said dryly. "Even if it is hard to predict such murders, the relevant institutions, social nets, neighbors, teacher and welfare workers must pay attention to these borderline cases," Landau said.