Ashley Souther

It's Not About Yassin

On my way back to the office at the Arab American University of Jenin in the West Bank, I ran into Amal, the cleaning lady. She is normally in a bubbly mood but today was despondent, which was ironic as her name means ‘hope’ in Arabic. I greeted her and then just listened as she tearfully recounted a litany of people killed or maimed by Israeli soldiers in the last few days - most recently the early morning assassination of Hamas spiritual leader Sheikh Ahmed Yassin. She seemed especially sad this morning, but not because she was a Hamas activist or Yassin supporter, but a mother with 7 daughters.