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Thursday, 31 July 2008
Son Of Hamas Leader, Christian Convert, Forgets Taqiyyah, Tells All
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Avi Issacharoff writes in Haaretz:

A moment before beginning his supper, Masab, son of West Bank Hamas leader Sheikh Hassan Yousef, glances at the friend who has accompanied him to the restaurant where we met. They whisper a few words and then say grace, thanking God and Jesus for putting food on their plates.

It takes a few seconds to digest this sight: The son of a Hamas MP who is also the most popular figure in that extremist Islamic organization, a young man who assisted his father for years in his political activities, has become a rank-and-file Christian. "I'm now called Joseph," he says at the outset.

Masab knows that he has little hope of returning to visit the Holy Land in this lifetime. "I know that I'm endangering my life and am even liable to lose my father, but I hope that he'll understand this and that God will give him and my family patience and willingness to open their eyes to Jesus and to Christianity. Maybe one day I'll be able to return to Palestine and to Ramallah with Jesus, in the Kingdom of God."

Nor does he attempt to hide his affection for Israel, or his abhorrence of everything representing the surroundings in which he grew up: the nation, the religion, the organization.

"Send regards to Israel, I miss it. I respect Israel and admire it as a country," he says.

"You Jews should be aware: You will never, but never have peace with Hamas. Islam, as the ideology that guides them, will not allow them to achieve a peace agreement with the Jews. They believe that tradition says that the Prophet Mohammed fought against the Jews and that therefore they must continue to fight them to the death."

Is that the justification for the suicide attacks?

"More than that. An entire society sanctifies death and the suicide terrorists. In Palestinian culture a suicide terrorist becomes a hero, a martyr. Sheikhs tell their students about the 'heroism of the shaheeds.'"

And yet, in spite of the criticism of the place he left, California can't make the longings disappear.

"I miss Ramallah," he says. "People with an open mind. ... I mainly miss my mother, my brothers and sisters, but I know that it will be very difficult for me to return to Ramallah soon."

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Posted on 07/31/2008 9:23 AM by Hugh Fitzgerald
Comments
31 Jul 2008
Hugh Fitzgerald

"You Jews should be aware: You will never, but never have peace with Hamas. Islam, as the ideology that guides them, will not allow them to achieve a peace agreement with the Jews. They believe that tradition says that the Prophet Mohammed fought against the Jews and that therefore they must continue to fight them to the death."
 

And since Fatah, just like Hamas, is based on Islam, "the ideology that guides them," and  those in Fatah, too, are Muslims, and take Islam as "the ideology that guides them," this defector from the Camp of Islam might, had he thought more, or had more time, note that the Israelis cannot rely on negotiations, peace-processing, or any treaties with either the Fast Jihadists of Hamas (his main subject) or with the Slow Jihadists of Fatah.

And that goes for any "agreements" with other Arab Muslims as well. For the awareness of an Arab identity, of sharing in 'Uruba, reinforces Islam. It is true that, now and then, other Muslims, especially those who have a long history of enmity with Arabs, and for whom they feel an ill-concealed contempt, such as many Turks and Iranians do, may be willing, to the extent that their ethnic identity, and its historical associations, plays against rather than reinforces Islam (which may be dimly discerned by some as the vehicle for Arab supremacism that, in fact, it is), to make alliances of convenience, out of temporary self-interest, with Israel (it happened with the Shah, it has happened in the past with the secular Turkish military).

But really, in the end it is the ideology of Islam, and not merely the particular embodiment of that in Hamas, that should prompt Israel to seek not "peace" -- it has the "peace" it is going to get, and should simply work to make that "peace" a little more "peaceful" not through any concessions or treaties, but through more aggressive action -- but to make sure that the only true and permanent and reliable peacekeeper in the region, the IDF, remains just as strong, as well-equipped and well-commanded,  as it can be.