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When the authors first moved Gaza in 1988, Sheikh Ahmad Yasin of the Islamic Resistance Movement, as Hamas, was virtually unknown. By the time they left the area five years later, a series of suicide bombings had made him famous around the world, and ordinary people in the West Bank and Gaza Strip had begun to express some degree of sympathy with the man and the movement. The first casualty in the authors' circle was Yusuf, a longtime member of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine. Those were heady days on “PIanet X”, a phrase one of Yusuf's brothers had discovered in a BBC English course book and applied to Gaza. Yusuf's conversion was of this order. A year after they left the Strip and moved back to Jerusalem, he suddenly turned serious and foreboding and began to frequent the mosque on a daily basis.
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