AMIT’s Southeast Region Director Roni Raab, will be speaking at two leading South Florida synagogues to share how his harrowing childhood experience of being hijacked and held hostage by terrorists has fueled his lifelong support for Israel.

The events will take place on Monday, May 9, at 5:30 pm at the Boca Raton Synagogue, and Tuesday, May 10 at 12 pm at the Young Israel of Hollywood-Fort Lauderdale.

Raab was only six years old in 1970 when terrorists from the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP) hijacked his Israel to New Jersey bound flight, rerouting its destination to a remote desert airstrip in Jordan. Raab’s airline was among one of four in a series of hijackings by the PFLP that largely targeted Jewish foreign nationals that year, culminating in a Jordanian civil war to later become known as Black September. The terrorists sequestered the individuals who were Jewish, holding Raab, his siblings, his mother and other passengers hostage, bartering their lives in exchange for the release of the hijackers’ imprisoned comrades throughout the world, including those in Israel. Bolstering their threat, the terrorists encased the plane with explosives, providing their victims with the bare minimum of food and water, and maintaining an atmosphere of terror during their imprisonment.

“My family agonized for days during our detainment, wondering and waiting if and when we would be killed,” said Raab. “Growing up in the aftermath of this traumatic experience, I channeled my family’s collective emotion into the only viable solution that exists for the world’s inevitable pervasive antisemitism problem: maintaining a strong and robust State of Israel. I apply this ideology to every aspect of my life and career and am now very fortunate to be working with AMIT on their crucial advances in Israel’s educational infrastructure and towards strengthening Israel’s future one child at a time.”

Joining Raab on these speaking engagements will be AMIT alumnus Leah Genie who serves as a social counselor in Kiryat Malachi. Genie was born in Ethiopia and emigrated with her family as a child, settling in Israel’s periphery. She credits AMIT’s educators and AMIT Kiryat Malachi for providing her with a world-class education and with the inspiration and drive to help other immigrants from Ethiopia and the former Soviet Union like herself.

About The Publishers
Founded in 1925, AMIT is the premier network of schools in Israel, educating 44,000 children each year in its 110 schools in 31 cities throughout Israel. AMIT enables students to realize their individual potential and strengthens Israeli society by educating and nurturing children from diverse backgrounds within a framework of innovation, academic excellence, and Jewish-based values. For more information, please visit
Releases published on the JNS Wire are communicated and paid for by third parties. Jewish News Syndicate, and any of its distribution partners, take zero responsibility for the accuracy of any content published in any press release. All the statements, opinions, figures in text or multimedia including photos or videos included in each release are presented solely by the sponsoring organization, and in no way reflect the views or recommendation of Jewish News Syndicate or any of its partners. If you believe any of the content in a release published on JNS Wire is offensive or abusive, please report a release.