20 x 26 6 – Color, Handprinted, Screen Print
Coventry Rag Paper, Printed at Self Help Graphics by Jose Alpuche, 2004
At the age of 25, Leila Khaled gained worldwide notoriety for hijacking planes to bring attention to the plight of Palestinians whose land had been stolen and settled by Zionists. In 1969, armed with handguns and grenades, under the direction of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (PFLP), Leila became the first woman to ever hijack a plane. No flight personnel or passengers were injured, but the plane was blown up. In 1970, after undergoing plastic surgery to disguise her looks, she attempted to hijack another flight. This time her partner was killed by security forces and she was arrested. British authorities later exchanged Leila for other hostages. In 1981, Leila laid down her arms after the birth of her first son. She still rejects any charges of terrorism leveled at her, explaining in a recent interview, “There is a difference between terrorism and armed struggle. Palestinians have the right under international law, to struggle by all means, including armed struggle.” Leila currently lives in Jordan with her husband and two sons and is a member of the Palestinian National Council.