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Statement from family of Leon Kanner on Rasmea Odeh plea deal

Statement from family of Leon Kanner on Rasmea Odeh plea deal

“We have been living the loss for almost 5 decades, and though the pain carries on, so does the memories of Leon’s life”

Earlier we reported that Palestinian terrorist Rasmea Odeh had agreed to a plea deal in her immigration fraud case, Terrorist Rasmea Odeh cops plea deal, to leave country.

Under that plea deal, Rasmea would avoid prison time, but would require her to forfeit her U.S. citizenship and be deported (likely to Jordan initially). Her plea hearing will be held on April 25, 2017 at 2:30 PM, at federal court in Detroit.

The plea on immigration fraud resulted from Rasmea’s failure to disclose on her visa papers (in 1994) and naturalization papers (2003) that she had been convicted in Israel in 1970 of the bombing of the SuperSol supermarket in Jerusalem, killing Hebrew University students Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner.

[Vigil in memory of Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner, DePaul University, outside fundraiser for Rasmea Odeh, February 2015]

These key posts of mine summarized the evidence showing Rasmea’s guilt of the supermarket bombing and immigration fraud:

After the announcement of the plea deal, we published a Statement from family of Edward Joffe on Rasmea Odeh plea deal. That statement provided, in part:

“Although Odeh will not serve further prison time for the Immigration Fraud crimes of which she is guilty, we believe that after a long and difficult trial and appeal, it is time for her to be stripped of her US citizenship and deported without further delay.

While it would have been helpful to have seen some kind of repentance for her horrendous acts, her plea does show admission of guilt in our eyes. We hope that her misguided supporters will now recognize her guilty plea for what it is, and desist from pretending she is a victim.

The true victims are the two young men Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner whom she murdered.

I also have received a statement from the family of Leon Kanner, reprinted below.

I had the pleasure of meeting Leon’s three sisters (and one of Edward’s brothers) during my 2015 trip to Israel.

[Sisters of Leon Kanner – Israel 2015][Photo by William Jacobson]

I learned about how the family heard the news of Leon’s death, as related in my prior post, Rasmea Odeh’s victims – then and now:

That day, Irit was at her parents house in Netanya. Early in the morning, before they knew of the bombing, her mother told her about a special dream she had, “at night, she saw my grandmother in the dream with open arms calling Leon to her.”

At ten o clock in the morning, her mother went to the hairdresser. Irit heard on the radio, the news about the bomb, but without names.

After 20 minutes, two policemen arrived at the house and told Irit and her father the news of Leon’s death. Her father said, “How can we tell this… to Mom.” A few minutes later, her mother entered, they hugged her and mentioned Leon’s name, and from their facial expressions her mother knew. Her mother began to cry and pull at her own hair. Her mother was almost silent for hours, then recalled her dream.

The secretary at the kibbutzim where her sisters lived were notified and told her sisters. The sisters then took the sad journey to Netanya.

In this photo the sisters comfort their mother, who hugged the casket.  There are other photos of the grieving the family asked me not to use, it’s just too painful.

[Leon Kanner Mother and Sisters at Funeral, Jerusalem 1969]

You can read more about Leon’s life and family, including his time as a high school exchange student in rural Michigan, in my prior post, Sisters of Leon Kanner seek “maximal sentence” for Rasmea Odeh:

[In the camera that was found at the bombing site was this photo which was taken with the scenery of Jerusalem. This photo was later developed as Leon did not get the chance to see it]

Here is an excerpt from the Kanner sisters’ letter to the judge after the first conviction of Rasmea for immigration fraud in November 2014:

Rasmieh Odeh carried out a terrorist act in the midst of a meeting point of civilian life and has never expressed repent since. Two families’ worlds fell apart that day. Our parents, Clara and Marcos Kanner, struggled to their last day with their loss. They kept their mourning to themselves allowing our family to grow and hold on to life. Our mother lived to the age of 92, our father to the age of 93. After their death we found in the house a box with excerpts from the press they have kept away through the years. The pain has accompanied them on a daily basis and will be carried on in our family to present and onwards.

[Leon Kanner with his parents Clara and Marcus, at his Bar-Mitzvah, 1961]

In 2015, I visited the graves of Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner. We were accompanied by a local Rabbi who helped us say prayers. We placed small stones on their graves, in the Jewish tradition. And we were overcome with emotion.

The inscriptions on the graves are simple, and nearly identical. Edward’s brother Harold provided the translation:

“Here is buried
Our dear son and brother
Efraim (Hebrew of Edward) David Joffe (Eddie) (z”l- means of blessed memory)
21 years old
We will remember you forever”

Then the same for “Arie (Leon Kaner) 20 years old”

[Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner, Headstones]

The stone marker joining the graves reads:

“… these beloved and dearest in life are also together in death…”
Their light [spark] of life was extinguished by a cruel hand in Jerusalem
on the third day of Adar, 5729
May their Souls be bound together in the eternal chain of Life

[Graves of Edward Joffe and Leon Kanner Jerusalem – Joint Inscription]

After the announcement of Rasmea’s plea deal, the Kanner family provided me with the following statement:

As in many instances in the past, also at present, as the plea deal hearing of Ramse Odeh’s citizenship fraud approaches, we feel it is of great importance to preserve the presence of Leon Kanner and Edward Joffe, whose actual voices she silenced forever in the cruel terrorist act she chose to take forward in Jerusalem on February of 1969.

We have been living the loss for almost 5 decades, and though the pain carries on, so does the memories of Leon’s life and all that he had achieved and also dreamed of in the future.

What’s left to do is to bring true justice forward in the decision regarding the plea. We wish to express our vigorous support to the US Department of Justice Attorney Team who so professionally has been carrying on the prosecution process.

We are hopeful and certain that the court will reach the best decision and justice, keeping in mind the true meaning of victim and victimizer.


The Kanner Family

[Featured Image: Leon Kanner at Masada]


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Perhaps the most dishonestly cited verses of the Quran.

“…whoever kills a soul … is as if he had slain mankind entirely. And whoever saves one – it is as if he had saved mankind entirely…”

The full verse.

Surah 5:32 Al Ma’idah

“Because of that, We decreed upon the Children of Israel that whoever kills a soul unless for a soul or for corruption [done] in the land – it is as if he had slain mankind entirely. And whoever saves one – it is as if he had saved mankind entirely. And our messengers had certainly come to them with clear proofs. Then indeed many of them, [even] after that, throughout the land, were transgressors

It’s a commandment for the Jews. Allah decided it wasn’t clear enough, as the Joooooozz weren’t killing enough people. He cleared things up in his commandment for the Muslims, in the next verse, 5:33:

“Indeed, the penalty for those who wage war against Allah and His Messenger and strive upon earth [to cause] corruption is none but that they be killed or crucified or that their hands and feet be cut off from opposite sides or that they be exiled from the land. That is for them a disgrace in this world; and for them in the Hereafter is a great punishment,”

Any questions?

My God commands me to love and pray for those who commit these vile acts.

If you only love those who love you, you won’t enter Heaven.

I just thought I’d toss this out as it is despicable to see
Odeh and Tamimi walking around free on this Earth. We need to remember that in this life we only have a legal system.

My God also commands me, If I am to pray, to go to my innermost room so no one can see me do it.

So, sorry I brought ii up.

Walker Evans | March 26, 2017 at 5:18 pm

I am not as good a person as you folks. My wish for her is a 7.62mm round tracking downward through the occipital lobe. End of problem.

I didn’t mean to kill the mood. I want to see crime punished as much as the next man. I spent 20 years in the Navy, so I eagerly playing my role in meting out as much punishment as I could for crimes such as piracy. Rasmeah Odeh belongs in prison for life.

Arguably, she deserves death. I know it’s going to seem an confusing for a Christian to support the death penalty, but it flows from the second greatest commandment.

“… And the second is like it: ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.’”

You can not love your neighbor unless you first love yourself. It’s only possible to love your neighbor if you are capable of loving yourself. If you love yourself, you love your life. This is what makes self-defense morally just. And the death penalty is simply an extension of lawful self-defense.

An unrepentant killer like Odeh deserves the death penalty. Does anyone doubt she’d do it again?

But it’s still not to late for her. Like it’s too late for Tamerlan Tsarnaev.

That’s it. That’s all I got. I just thought I’d point out that as a Christian there are lines I won’t cross. They don’t stop me from doing justice, though. But I plan on going to my God without ever wishing death and damnation on anyone. Not even Rasmeah Odeh, who, had she been sentenced to death, I would have helped carry out the execution.

I have gremlins in my keyboard, which cause editing/cut-and-paste errors.