Green Prince turns from terror

The son to a founding member of the Hamas Palestinian terrorist group shares why he is prepared to put his life on the line in the name of peace and the truth

Mosab Hassan Yousef

Mosab Hassan Yousef did the unthinkable, and put himself in danger, when he turned away from the life he was destined for and converted from Islam to Christianity.

"I'm not afraid of (Palestinian Muslims)," Mosab told The Daily Telegraph, "especially as I know that I'm doing the right thing, and I don't see them as my enemies.

"If they want to kill me, let them do it. I'm not going to stop anyone. It's going to be my freedom. My soul's going to be free of my body, not flesh anymore."

Mosab says the decision to go public with his beliefs stems from his disgust at the brutality of the terrorist group he was once associated with.

"Hamas, they are using civilians' lives, they are using children, they are using the suffering of people every day to achieve their goals. And this is what I hate. There is only one way to Paradise – the way of Jesus who sacrificed Himself on the cross for all of our sins," he says.

Before converting to Christianity and seeking asylum in the USA, Mosab worked as a spy for the Israeli Shin Bet with the code name Green Prince: green for the colour of the Islamist Hamas flag, and prince as the offspring of 'Hamas royalty'.

So, as he writes in his book Son of Hamas, "At the age of twenty-two, I became the Shin Bet's only Hamas insider who could infiltrate Hamas's military and political wings, as well as other Palestinian factions."

With this intel Mosab foiled planned assassinations of prominent Israeli leaders as well as many suicide bomber attacks.

It was also during this time that he met a British missionary in Jerusalem who gave him an English-Arabic copy of the New Testament and invited him to attend a Bible study session at their hotel.

Curious about the God of the Bible, Mosab says, "I found that I was really drawn to the grace, love and humility that Jesus talked about."

He began secretly studying the Bible and was particularly struck by Jesus' encouragement to "love your enemies".

"I converted to Christianity because I was convinced by Jesus Christ as a character, as a personality," Mosab told the Wall Street Journal.

"I loved Him, His wisdom, His love, His unconditional love. I didn't leave [the Islamic] religion to put myself in another box of religion. At the same time it's a beautiful thing to see my God exist in my life and see the change in my life. I see that when He does exist in [the hearts of] other Middle Easterners there will be a change."

Following Jesus was a painful decision to make as it caused much suffering to his family and left him ostracised from them.

"I absolutely know that in anybody's eyes I was a traitor," Mosab says. "To my family, to my nation, to my God. I crossed all the red lines in my society. I didn't leave one that I didn't cross."

Yet this changes nothing. Mosab has devoted himself to Jesus and the cause of drawing attention to how the Palestinian leadership is "misleading" and exploiting its people.

"Palestinians look really ugly in front of everybody in the world and they are very, very good people ... they are misled, and their picture is very dark because of this leadership. They need some help, they need people to stop lying to them, and lying to the world."

Although the threat of death remains Mosab boldly adds,

"I'm not afraid . . . . Palestinians have reason to kill me. Some Israelis may want to kill me. My goal is not to defeat my enemy. It is to win over my enemy."

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