WASHINGTON (JTA) — The defenders of a man that Israel says infiltrated Hamas’ top echelons on its behalf are rallying against his deportation from the United States.
Mosab Hassan Yousef, the eldest son of Hassan Yousef, a founder of the Palestinian terrorist group, was recruited by the Shin Bet, Israel’s internal security service, in 1997. Israeli agents have been quoted as saying that his information prevented multiple terrorist attacks.
Yousef has written of his experience in a recent book, "Son of Hamas," and now promotes the book on the conservative and pro-Israel speaking circuits.
Yousef, who has converted to Christianity, has lived since 2007 in the United States, where he has applied for asylum.
Immigration authorities have turned down his request, apparently based on his acknowledgment in his book that he worked for Hamas — even though he was employed in order to spy for Israel.
A number of groups, including Emet, the Endowment for Middle East Truth, have rallied to his defense ahead of his first deportation hearing in San Diego, scheduled for June 30.
The Wall Street Journal took up his cause in a June 12 editorial.
"It would dishonor the U.S. to deport a convert in the war on terror because our immigration bureaucracy is too obtuse to make even life and death distinctions," the Journal said.