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Children of Jihad By: Itamar Marcus and Barbara Crook
Palestinian Media Watch | Thursday, March 22, 2007

Hamas TV broadcast today a video dramatization of the four-year-old daughter of female suicide bomber Reem Riyashi singing to her dead mother and vowing to follow in her footsteps. The video clip ends as the little girl picks up sticks of explosives from her mother's drawer.

The Al Aqsa TV children's program shows a child actress playing the daughter, watching Riyashi preparing the bomb and asking her mother, "Mommy, what are you carrying in your arms instead of me? A toy or a present for me?" She later sees a TV news story about her mother's suicide mission and death, and realizes her mother had been carrying a bomb.

"Only now, I know what was more precious than us . . . " she sings of the bomb.

Although she misses her mother, she vows to follow in her footsteps. The video ends as she opens her mother's drawer and picks up the sticks of explosives her mother had left there.


Reem Riyashi killed four Israelis and wounded seven at the Erez crossing between Gaza and Israel in 2004. She gained the sympathy of the Israeli soldiers at the checkpoint by telling them that she had a metal plate in her leg that would trigger the metal detector. After she was taken to a room to be searched privately, she detonated the bomb hidden under her clothes.

Click here to see the video clip

The following is the text of the song that Duha, Reem's daughter, sings to her mother:

[Daughter sees mother preparing explosives sticks]

"Mommy, what are you carrying
in your arms instead of me?

[Mother turns to hide bomb]

A toy or a present for me?...
Mommy Reem!
Why did you put on your veil?
Are you going out, Mommy?...
Come back quickly, Mommy
I can't sleep without you,
unless you tell me and Ubaydah [her brother] a bedtime story.

[Daughter sees mother's picture and news story about bombing on PA TV]

My mother, my mother,
Me and Ubaydah are awake and waiting for you
to come to put us to sleep.
Me and Ubaydah, oh Mommy,
still need you to wipe our tears...
Instead of me you carried a bomb in your hands.
Only now, I know what was more precious than us...
May your steps be blessed,
and may you be flawless for Jerusalem.
Me and Ubaydah wish we were there with you.

[Images of her mother's grave and the graves of other terrorists,
including Aayat Al-Akhras, 17-year-old female suicide terrorist]

Send greetings to our Messenger [Muhammad] and tell him:
'Duha loves you.'
My love will not be [merely] words.
I am following Mommy in her steps.

[Finds explosives that mother left in her drawer,
picks up stick of explosives]

Oh Mommy, oh Mommy."

Click here to see the video clip

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Itamar Marcus is the founder and director of Palestinian Media Watch. He was appointed by the Israeli government to be the Israeli representative (communication specialist) to the Trilateral (Israeli-American-Palestinian) Anti-Incitement Committee established under the Wye Accords. From 1998 to 2000, Mr. Marcus served as research director of the Center for Monitoring the Impact of Peace, writing reports on PA, Syrian, and Jordanian schoolbooks. He holds a BA in political science from City College of New York and an MA in Hebrew culture from New York University. Barbara Crook is associate director and North American representative of Palestinian Media Watch. She teaches at the School of Journalism and Communications at Carleton University in Ottawa, Canada. She holds an Honors BA in English literature from Queen's University, an MA in journalism from the University of Western Ontario, and is a Southam Fellow at the University of Toronto.

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