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Palestina "Tina" Isa

Reader comment on item: Guarding the Secrets: Palestinian Terrorism and a Father's Murder of His Too-American Daughter

Submitted by Paula Walker (Smith) (United States), Nov 19, 2004 at 09:39

Tina was a friend of mine. I just found out about this book and it immediately brought back all of the pain from 16 years ago-November 7, 1989-when I found out she was murdered.

I have yet to read this book to see how accurate it is. I hope that it does portray Tina as I remember her. She was an honor roll student who was fluent in 5 languages. She was in French Club and I believe she also played Tennis for Roosevelt High School.

We (her friends) were not allowed to know where she was buried or to go to the funeral - while we watched the clips of the funeral on t.v. and saw that even her father attended the funeral (at that time, her mother had left town). I still have the videos of the newsclips and one of Tina's sisters saying, "She deserved to die."

What you may not know is this....

Tina ALWAYS had a smile for everyone. She was such a warm and loving person. When I heard that evening, on the news, that Zein said she attacked him....I knew immediately it was a lie. Tina had no idea she was going to be killed - she was attacked by her parents - it was a pre-meditated murder.

I too remember the screams on those tapes. They have stayed with me all of these years. I cannot forget them. I also cannot forget how guilty I feel for not being able to help her when she ran away the summer before (after being threatened by Zein with a knife and kicks to her stomach while her mother helped to hold her down) and came to me asking me to help hide her....but I could only keep her hidden for one day, then she had to return home.

Tina died, at 16 yrs old (only one month before she would have been 17, at which age the police would not have been able to force her to go back home), and one week before I turned 17. My own mortality was shoved into my face. I also began questioning who I could trust - how could any parent do this to their child? NO CHILD DESERVES DEATH AS A PUNISHMENT!

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