The Sbarro suicide bombing – the Malki Roth story

On August 9, 2001 Malki Roth who was 15 at the time and 14 others died at the hand of a suicide bomber at the Sbarro Restaurant in Jerusalem. The mastermind of one of the most horrific of terrorist acts in the annals of history is Ahlam Ahmad al-Tamimi. She plead guilty in an Israeli court for her pivotal role and received 16 life sentences and an additional 250 years behind bars. Tamimi admitted she selected the Sbarro Restaurant because it was a known favorite for families and expressed her “delight“ that so many children were killed.

A 16th victim who also is an American citizen remains in a vegetative state. The other American killed was Shoshana Yehudit Greenbaum who was five months pregnant at the time.

The parents of Malki Roth have searched high and low for justice. I had the privilege of speaking to the father, Arnold Roth, this past week. He was in tears. He will not stop till Ahlam Ahmad al-Tamimi, the most wanted female terrorist in the world with a five million dollar bounty on her head is extradited to America and brought to justice for murdering his beautiful daughter.

The Roth family has gotten both the DOJ and the FBI to agree (that is an accomplishment) that Tamimi should be extradited. The State Department seems to be where there is a holdup. The U.S. Government first filed under seal a criminal complaint against Tamimi in 2013. It was unsealed in March 2017 but so far nothing has happened.

Tamimi was released by Israel in 2011 as part of the 1000 plus prisoner exchange for Gilad Shalit. Former Vice President of Israel’s Supreme Court, Elyakim Rubinstein is on the side of the Roth family. Israel can help in the extradition process. Pressure must be brought to do so.

The real problem seems to be King Abdullah of Jordan. The United States signed an extradition agreement with his father King Hussein in 1995. Tamimi who is now 39 has been living it up in Jordan. She has been hosting her own TV show for five years until recently. She has portrayed herself as a heroine who “holds a Medal of Honor” for her “life imprisonment in Zion’s Prisons”

Jordan received 1.7 Billion Dollars of American taxpayers money in 2017. King Abdullah though was one of the reasons the United States did not move the Embassy to Jerusalem sooner.  Many in previous administrations and some in the current administration are afraid to upset King Abdullah. Hence, Ahlam Ahmad al-Tamimi has not been allowed to be extradited to America for a fair trial.

I believe President Trump himself would be more inclined to extradite if he was properly briefed. I also think that King Abdullah would be more amenable to allow the transfer if he understood the moral imperative to bring terrorists to justice just as Simon Wiesenthal brought Nazis to justice no matter how many years had passed since their crime. I beseech King Abdullah to do the right thing and honor the extradition request. Malki Roth and her family who have suffered inordinately deserve so much. The least we can do is to pull together to make this happen.

About the Author
Joe Frager is a graduate of the University of Pennsylvania School of Medicine. He is a Clinical Assistant Professor of Medicine at the Albert Einstein College of Medicine in private practice. Currently he is the Chairman of American Friends of Ateret Cohanim and First Vice President of the National Council of Young Israel. For the past 25 years he has been the Organizer of the Israel Day Concert in Central Park after the Salute to the Israel Day parade.
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