Middle East: The Storm Troopers

Wearing the red garb of a condemned man, a young Arab housepainter named Mahmud Hejazi last week waited nervously in Israel's Ramla jail for the decision that could send him to the gallows.

Young Hejazi was the first member of a little-known organization called Asifa (Storm Troopers) to be captured by the Israeli authorities. He was recently tried by a court-martial, found guilty of sabotage and sentenced to death.

Asifa is the military arm of a group called El Fatah, which is a reverse acronym standing for the Arabic words Harakat Tahrir Falastin (Movement for the Liberation of Palestine). By...

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