The Green Prince

This past Sunday, Jeff and I attended a screening of the Israeli documentary, “The Green Prince.” It was an experience like no other. Both Jeff and I were moved in such a deep and profound way, that I feel compelled to share my experience with you, my reader.

The film is based on the book “Son Of Hamas,” by Mosab Hassan Yousef. The author, Mosab, is the the eldest child of one of the founding members and leaders of Hamas. He currently resides in the U.S., but his personal journey is unbelievable. (Find the book available here)

At the age of 17, after being imprisoned for smuggling guns into the West Bank, he was arrested by the Israeli police and spent time in prison. It was there that he had an epiphany, an "aha" moment,  and agreed to act as a spy for the Shin Bet, Israel's internal security service.

His story is incredulous, but even more incredible is the story of how two men from seemingly polar ends of the universe, both in their religion and personal beliefs, could come together and call each other “brothers.” I am refering to Mosab and his Shin Bet handler, Gonen Ben Itzhak.

This gripping story conveys the physical and spiritual journey of these two unlikely friends. It also speaks to the possibilities and endless realities that are contained within this universe. It gives one hope in an otherwise dark and painful world. After the film, the audience had the rare opportunity to meet Mosab, Gonen, and the director of the film,  Nadav Schirman. The depth, intellect and eloquence of Mosab,  coupled with the compassion, sensitivity and intelligence of Gonen, as well as the kindness and sheer talent of the director, Nadav,  resulted in a moment of truth and clarity for the lucky few of us who were in that room.

I do not wish to to devulge all of the details of the story, and so I urge you to first order the book “Son Of Hamas,” and read it immediately.  Then, on Sept 12, when "The Green Prince" opens in theaters, you must go see it! You will neither forget nor regret a minute of it.

In light of the dire situation in Gaza and Israel right now, the timing of this is eerily ironic. Perhaps it is just another example of how the universe operates, giving us hope for a lasting peace that is built on mutual love and respect in a seemingly intractable conflict.

Gonen Ben-Itzhak (left), Mosab Hassan Yousef  (middle), Nadav Schirman (right)