While the 18th anniversary of the Sbarro pizzeria suicide bombing in Jerusalem on August 9 is approaching, Janna Jihad, a young relative of the terrorist Ahlam Tamimi who planned and helped perpetrate the massacre, is on a US speaking tour.
Janna Jihad is only 13, but she has already been groomed for years by the Tamimis to succeed her cousin Ahed Tamimi as the youthful, innocent face tasked with hiding the clan's murderous hatred of Israel.
Janna Jihad 2019 U.S. Tour
Janna Jihad's current PR tour in the US is apparently sponsored by the South African organization Shamsaan that seems devoted to promoting the Tamimi child stars (more on Shamsaan below); support for organizing and hosting events has also been provided by the far-left fringe group Code Pink and the extremist group American Muslims for Palestine (AMP) as well as other anti-Israel organizations like the misleadingly named Jewish Voice for Peace.
Events held so far included an appearance with the popular anti-Israel activist Marc Lamont Hill, a talk at Busboys and Poets in Washington, D.C., and a "workshop" with children at the Palestinian American Community Center in Clifton, NJ.
Considerably more noteworthy than these events is the fact that Amnesty International – which has long insisted on ignoring the Tamimis' involvement in terrorism – cynically joined the radical organizations and individuals that exploit the newest Tamimi child star and boasted of bringing Janna Jihad to meetings with "dozens of members of #congress." Janna Jihad herself proudly advertised a meeting with Democratic Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib on Twitter.
Extremist American Muslims for Palestine
AMP organized a "Congressional Briefing on Israeli Treatment of US Citizens" on July 24, where Janna Jihad was a 'featured speaker'.
A 13-year-old girl can of course not be held responsible for the organizations that exploit her, but Rashida Tlaib, who attended AMP's "Congressional Briefing" to address the audience, is presumably familiar with the group's odious record and agenda.
According to an Anti-Defamation League (ADL) report, "AMP has its organizational roots in the Islamic Association of Palestine (IAP), an anti-Semitic group that served as the main propaganda arm for Hamas in the United States until it was dissolved in 2004. Since its creation in 2005, AMP continues to work closely with some former IAP leaders who currently hold positions as AMP board members."
The ADL report describes AMP as "the leading organization providing anti-Zionist training and education to students and Muslim community organizations in the country. ... AMP promotes extreme anti-Israel views and has at times provided a platform for anti-Semitism under the guise of educating Americans about 'the just cause of Palestine and the rights of self-determination.'"
Legal Insurrection also has reported on AMP's noxious anti-Israel politics, Investigation: Anti-Israel groups plan disruption of Christians United for Israel Annual Summit
More recently, AMP campaigned enthusiastically for convicted Palestinian terrorist and US immigration fraudster Rasmea Odeh, shamelessly claiming that if more people were like Odeh, "we would live in a more just world."
Last November, AMP's annual convention was advertised with a poster that referenced Israel's establishment in 1948 with the statement "70 YEARS LATER COMMITTED TO RETURN." The poster showed figures carrying Palestinian flags and walking towards a gate shaped in the outline of the area between the Jordan river and the Mediterranean; this gateway led to the Dome of the Rock on the Temple Mount. AMP thus left once again no doubt that they advocate the elimination of Israel and the establishment of a Palestinian state from the river to the sea. Among the prominently featured convention speakers were notorious anti-Israel activists like Linda Sarsour and the radical Palestinian-American imam Omar Suleiman.
Plenty of additional examples of the hateful views spread by AMP leaders have been compiled in a recent video published by Canary Mission.
The advertisement for AMP's "Congressional Briefing on Israeli Treatment of US Citizens" described Janna Jihad as a "13-year old Palestinian-American living in the West Bank."
Indeed, according to the writings of Tamimi family friend Ben Ehrenreich, Janna's father Jihad Ayyad (aka Jihad Ibrahim) emigrated to the United States and lives in West Palm Beach; however, Janna's mother Nawal Tamimi "couldn't stand the isolation of American life" and decided to return with Janna to her clan's village Nabi Saleh. A document that Nawal Tamimi publicly shared on Facebook confirms that Janna was born in the US; apparently she also spent her early childhood years there before her mother decided that she preferred to bring up her daughter in her hometown, where the Tamimis have regularly organized demonstrations and clashes with Israeli soldiers.
When Janna Jihad spoke this week at AMP's "Congressional Briefing," she signaled very clearly that she knows and shares the agenda of the Tamimis by wearing a necklace with a golden pendant shaped in the form of a map symbolizing the demand for the elimination of Israel and its replacement by a Palestine 'from the river to the sea'.
"We will kill you" – Janna Jihad's indoctrination as the Tamimis' new child star
When Janna Jihad's mother decided to return to her clan's village and bring up her daughter among her radical family, the media-savvy Tamimis lost no time turning Janna Jihad into a budding child star who would succeed the teenaged Ahed Tamimi.
Given that the little girl already knew some English from her early childhood years in the US, her potential appeal was obvious. Indeed, even before Janna Jihad turned 10, her Facebook page had more than 200,000 "Likes" (by now it's more than 300,000), and she had already been featured by popular media outlets, including the British Daily Mail and Al Jazeera. These media reports uncritically promoted the little girl's fantasy that she was the world's youngest "journalist" while studiously ignoring the seething hatred and fanaticism displayed so openly by the adults who skillfully shaped the image of the newest Tamimi child star.
There's no denying that Janna Jihad has considerable talent for her role: consider this image from 2014, when Janna was just eight and posed for the cameras pretending to be threatened by an armed Israeli soldiers, while her cousin Ahed cheers her on in the background and activists visiting the Tamimis crowd admiringly around the staged scene.
Video clips promoted both by media outlets and on social media also show Janna Jihad from at least the age of 5 dutifully posing for the cameras and rattling off well-rehearsed talking points or doing her very best to provoke Israeli soldiers.
A video clip first posted on Facebook in August 2014 shows a typical scene: the 8-year-old Janna stands in front of a group of Israeli border policemen in Jerusalem, screaming at them in English "we scare you," then denouncing them as "terrorists" and then trying to provoke them by declaring confidently that "all the world" is with the Palestinians. A woman veiled in black can be glimpsed stroking her head; shortly afterwards (1.15), Janna innocently betrays what she hears back at home in Nabi Saleh and tells the soldiers "we will kill you."
(full video here)
Bassem Tamimi — one of the clan's most prominent members — shared the clip a year later on his Facebook page with the comment: "Jana jehad 9 years old in here first visit to Jerusalem the Nabi Saleh school to create the generation of freedom fighter to liberat Palestine."
Bassem Tamimi's proud claim that Janna Jihad is a product of "the Nabi Saleh school to create the generation of freedom fighter to liberat[e] Palestine" reflects his many other statements about the "duty" of children to "resist;" it also is just another of many examples that show the Tamimis' cynical exploitation of their children for political purposes.
[Bassem Tamimi at Beverly J. Martin Elementary School, Ithaca, NY]While Janna Jihad would soon learn in Bassem Tamimi's "Nabi Saleh school" that she shouldn't say "we will kill you" in front of the cameras, the Tamimis have not been shy about acknowledging how much they love and admire their family members who are convicted terrorist murderers — including Ahlam Tamimi, the unrepentant mastermind and facilitator of the 2001 Sbarro pizzeria bombing in Jerusalem.
According to Bassem Tamimi's wife Nariman, the Sbarro massacre was "an integral part" of the Palestinian "struggle." Two years ago, in protest against the publication of an FBI notice that designates Ahlam Tamimi as one of the agency's "Most Wanted" terrorists, Nariman Tamimi even encouraged a social media campaign declaring solidarity with the murderous terrorist.
So it is no mystery what children like Janna Jihad can learn in the "Nabi Saleh school to create the generation of freedom fighter to liberat Palestine;" yet, the Tamimis' well-documented support for terrorism and their ardent Jew-hatred is carefully concealed from Janna Jihad's American audiences. Instead, anyone who attends or watches an event with Janna Jihad on her current US tour will encounter a charming teenager who enjoys the limelight and confidently delivers the kind of performances she has been trained to give for years, depicting Israel as an evil oppressor that must be stopped and punished for the sake of the Palestinians who are presented as innocent victims that deserve unquestioning support.
Anti-Israel activists are only too happy to promote Janna Jihad's carefully crafted message on social media, claiming she "has not been able to have even one day of normal childhood. It has been a daily nightmare."
But while Janna Jihad will freely talk about the incidents when Tamimi clan members were killed or injured in the clashes they regularly provoked with Israeli soldiers, she won't mention the celebrations that were put on in the village to welcome the release of several convicted terrorist killers who got out of prison due to deals like e.g. the 2011 agreement to free Hamas hostage Gilad Shalit. In addition to Sbarro massacre mastermind and facilitator Ahlam Tamimi, the released murderers include Ahmad Tamimi, Said Tamimi and Nizar Tamimi, who were involved in the killing and burning of Haim Mizrahi in 1993; at the time, this terror attack was seen as an attempt to derail the Oslo peace process.
Shortly after their release, Ahlam Tamimi and Nizar Tamimi got married in Jordan. Bassem Tamimi and his wife Nariman, as well as their famous daughter Ahed, attended the wedding of the terrorist couple.
So when Janna Jihad's mother decided to return to her clan's village, she knew very well that her daughter would grow up in a place where terrorist murderers are greatly admired family members.
Janna Jihad's mysterious South African sponsors
Given the background of the Tamimis, it is downright obscene that the announcement for one of Janna Jihad's recent events highlights that "Janna serves as Ambassador of the South African children's rights organization Shamsaan who has brought her to the US for a one month tour."
The Shamsaan Facebook page (created in October 2016) claims that "Shamsaan (meaning 2 Suns in Arabic), is a South African initiative that supports the establishment of youth platforms for dialogue, promotes social activism through the creative arts and campaigns for a world where human rights are enjoyed by all, especially the children."
However, both the Facebook page and the organization's website seem almost exclusively devoted to Palestinian issues and more specifically to promoting the Tamimi child stars Ahed and, in particular, Janna Jihad. The Facebook page offers a detailed list of Janna Jihad's current US tour, including an "inaugural public event" featuring a meeting with the fanatically anti-Zionist Neturei Karta sect that specializes in trying to legitimize antisemitic anti-Zionism.
The content featured both on the Shamsaan Facebook page and the website suggest that the organization has been set up primarily as a PR front for the Tamimis, and since the website also solicits donations, it may be used to raise money for their activism.
Janna Jihad's title of "Ambassador of the South African children's rights organization Shamsaan" therefore seems to be just a pathetic PR gimmick designed to give her an aura of legitimacy and prominence.
In the days just before and shortly after the 18th anniversary of the Sbarro pizzeria bombing, the notorious hate-group Al-Awda and its collaborators like e.g. the University of Florida chapter of Students for Justice in Palestine will host Janna Jihad for various events.
To be sure, a thirteen-year-old can't be blamed for a terror attack that took place years before she was born, and she can't be blamed for the fact that she is now being exploited as the likeable innocent-looking poster child for the very same people who celebrated the carnage and remain proud of their relative Ahlam Tamimi, who was so obscenely delighted when she learnt that she had helped to kill not just three children, as she thought, but eight. Ever since, no act of murder has been too gruesome for the Tamimis: in June 2016, after a teenaged Palestinian terrorist broke into a home and killed a 13-year-old sleeping Israeli girl in her bedroom, Ahed's mother Nariman Tamimi shared a Facebook post from another Tamimi family member that praised the perpetrator of this savage act for "return[ing] to the homeland its awe/reverence."
Janna Jihad is too young to be confronted with it, but the fact is that she was trained to do what she is doing during her US tour in order to whitewash the murderous hatred of people who have celebrated the killing of Israeli children for some two decades.