A hearing by the Department of Homeland Security on the possible deportation of Hamas traitor Mosab Hassan Yousef begins today.
The son of Sheikh Hassan Yousef, a prominent Hamas official in the West Bank, Yousef fled to the United States in 2007 after having worked for both the Palestinian organization and, afterwards, as a spy for the Israeli government to help prevent terrorist and suicide bombings. He detailed his experiences in his best-selling autobiography "Son of Hamas."
While many have credited Yousef with saving the lives of hundreds of Palestinians, Israelis and Americans, the Department of Homeland Security has labeled him as a potential "danger to the security of the United States" who has "engaged in terrorist activity," and denied him political asylum in 2009.
Yousef, who is a convert from Islam to Christianity, says that being forced back to Palestine could mean his death.
Several political and faith leaders have expressed their support for Yousef in the wake of his trial, including former CIA Director James Woolsey, who wrote to Homeland Secretary Janet Napolitano this week.
"It is not an exaggeration to say that [deporting Yousef] would set us back years in the war on terrorism," Woolsey said, according to the Associated Press. "Mosab's deportation would be such an inhumane act it would constitute a blight on American history."
Faith J.H. McDonnell of the Institute on Religion and Democracy said that Yousef is an ally and a "great source of help in understanding what we face in radical Islam."
"We are concerned because of the irrationality of the Department of Homeland Security, as well as the danger to Yousef's life, if he is deported," McDonnell said in a statement. "This threat of deportation says how little the United States government understands radical Islam and the global jihad to impose Islam around the world, to which Yousef testifies."
Yousef himself, however, says that he doesn't fear being deported, but believes that God is using his situation to "expose the weaknesses of Homeland Security and to put pressure on it to make changes that can save lives and preserve freedom."
"If Homeland Security cannot tell the difference between a terrorist and a man who spent his life fighting terrorism, how can they protect their own people?" Yousef wrote on his blog last month. "Why is Homeland Security wasting its time investigating a former Israeli intelligence operative, instead of looking for the real terrorists out there?"
"Maybe they feel a little insecure because someone with my background got into this country and moved around for seven months, and they were clueless," he added.
On the web:
Son of Hamas blog