חשיפה: אדם חסין (צעיר ישראלי שיצא להילחם בדאע”ש) עצור בכורדיסטן מאז קיץ 2015 ונאשם ברצח
Israeli media has been trying to report the case of a 20 year-old Israeli-Kurdish Jew who left Israel under false pretenses to visit his grandparents in the Kurdish region of Iraq. Instead, he enlisted with the Peshmerga to fight ISIS there. All went well until someone locally discovered he was an Israeli citizen. You can imagine that such news doesn’t go over too well in much of the region. Not only does Israel’s reputation for cruelty against the Arab states in the region go before it, but Israeli intelligence penetrates these movements as deeply as possible. One individual called him out for his deception and threatened to kill him (though the assailant was unarmed). The Israeli, who was armed, shot and murdered the Kurd.
The Israeli was arrested in 2015, charged with murder and faces the death penalty. He’s been imprisoned for 18 months in Kurdistan. No one reported this story until far-right Druze MK Ayoob Kara, discovered it, visited the prisoner’s father and posted it to Facebook. Kara had gone far off the reservation, since Israeli authorities hadn’t wanted the story reported. It’s unclear whether Israel was negotiating for his release and felt publicity would damage the possibility to free him; or whether the authorities didn’t want egg on their faces for permitting an Israeli to enter a dangerous Islamist combat zone and wreak havoc there. In the past, I broke Israeli censorship reporting that Avera Mengistu, an Ethiopian-Israeli had crossed the border into Gaza and been captured there. The Israeli government has permitted him to languish there for several years and refused Hamas offers to negotiate his release. Given that Kurdish Israelis are a minority within the discriminated Mizrahi community, it’s entirely possible secrecy was intended to avoid pressure to negotiate his release.
It is illegal for Israelis to visit Iraq, though a significant portion of the Israeli Mizrahi population (among them IDF former generals,Binyamin Ben Eliezer and Dan Halutz) originates there.
It’s no wonder that virtually all of the press coverage of this incident takes Kara to task for endangering Hassin’s life. None of the media have asked why Israel permitted a citizen to leave the country to fight with the Kurds. I should note that a number of Israelis, both Jews and Palestinians, have fought on both sides of the conflict. One Palestinian even flew a glider from Israel-occupied Golan into ISIS controlled Syria to fight. An Israeli Jew left to fight with the Peshmerga. As far as I know, despite violating Israeli law in doing so, she was not prosecuted. Which attests to the racist double standards inherent in Israeli society and law. Jews can visit Lebanon, Iraq, etc and never be prosecuted. While Israeli Palestinian MKs can visit Lebanon or Syria and have their heads handed to them on a platter.
Kara posted to Facebook the prisoner’s name, Adam Hassin. He visited with his father, Ilan, and posted a picture of the meeting. I’ve posted the censored Jerusalem Post article. There are also Hebrew language articles which also have been censored. H/t to Yanik who first alerted me to the story.