Israeli Druze former soldier beaten by Jewish gang: We are all the same race
Roei Eisenberg/Ynetnews/Published: 01.26.15/Israel News
Tommy Houssan calls for tolerance after being hit with glass, bottles in hate attack; president phones father to show support. A Druze former IDF soldier who was beaten by Jews in Jerusalem called on Israelis to forward a Facebook post on Sunday preaching a message of peace and tolerance, mere days after his attack. “Many people who have never met me asked forgiveness,” wrote Tommy Hassoun. “I am in a lot of pain, but my head is held high.”
His family was recruited to the task, and his brother even turned to the English-speaking community of Tel Aviv in an inspiring post, urging the immigrants to Israel to “love more and cry more; after all, we all belong to the same race, the human race, and with love and by being better people we can thrive. We all can do more.” Houssan’s post in Hebrew said that the attack showed him “the ugly side of people in this country… and from now I am going to see the good side.
“It is important for me that those specific people are caught and punished harshly and that such things do not happen again,” he continued. “My family and I are not looking for vengeance. We only want to root out these people… where are their parents? They should come to my house or call like the rest of the people… Houssan was attacked on Thursday by ten Jewish men, reportedly after he was heard speaking Arabic. The men, who were wearing skullcaps, hit the 21-year-old Druze student and broke a glass bottle on him.
His attackers did not know they were assaulting a man who had completed his IDF service just three months ago and recently moved to Jerusalem to study music. Houssan said the attackers hit him with glass and bottles, and he was hospitalized with bruises on his face and on the back of his head. He said described blood running down his head and shirt. President Reuven Rivlin, who knew Hassoun from his days in the IDF, called the young man’s father to show his support for the family.
On a personal level I believed up until now that this is one nation – I never saw a difference between a Jew and a Druze,” said Hassoun’s father. “I believed and I will continue to believe in the future that this is the land of the Jewish nation – it has a right to live here.” Tommy’s brother, Julian, said: “A month ago two Druze police officers were murdered during terror attacks and now a Druze gets hit by Jews.”
**Roi Yanovsky contributed to this report