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

Ellen Francis Harris, Author
Ellen Francis Harris, Author Scribner Book Company $22.5 (352p) ISBN 978-0-02-548335-4
Paperback - 364 pages - 978-0-684-87052-6
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This true-crime study spotlights the clashing of cultures. TV reporter Harris (Dying to Get Married) relates the tragic story of 16-year-old Tina Isa, murdered in Missouri in 1989 by her father, Zein al-Abdeen Hassan Isa, with her mother's help. The father, from a backwater Palestinian town on the West Bank, was a suspected member of the terrorist Abu Nidal organization, and his home in St. Louis had been bugged by federal agents. Thus the murder was taped, and the parents received death sentences. The proximate cause of the slaying was Tina's attempted assimilation into American culture--her wanting to become independent, to get a job, to date an African American teenager--but the root causes, according to the author, lay in the misogyny of Islam and in the clannish nature of rural Palestinian society, where the ``honor'' of the family is more important than life itself. Photos not seen by PW. Author tour. (Apr.)
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