A foreign ministry spokesman has confirmed that Israeli police have lifted the gag order imposed on the recent arrest of Hamas member Hassam Qawasameh from the West Bank city of Hebron in connection with the murder of three Israeli teens who were kidnapped while walking home from school in June.
The spokesman, Paul Hirschon, tweeted that Qawasameh admitted during questioning that he was an active member of Hamas who received his orders and the funding to carry out those orders from Hamas handlers operating in the Gaza Strip.
— Paul Hirschson (@paulhirschson) August 5, 2014
The announcement that the kidnappings and murders were in fact conducted by Hamas as a terrorist operation is likely to put a major crimp into the developing storyline originally promulgated by Hamas that the kidnappings and murders were in fact staged by Israel to justify the launching of its recently concluded Operation Protective Edge.
The charge that the murders were an Israeli conspiracy has been the hobby horse of New York Magazine and its reporter Katie Zavadski, who has spent the past month building the case that Israel invented the charge that Hamas was behind the kidnappings. Zavadski’s now discredited reporting was immediately seized upon by Israel haters as yet another reason to excoriate the Jewish state. William Jacobson, editor of the popular blog Legal Insurrection, says Zavadski’s false narrative blaming Israel for the abduction and murder of the three Israeli teens has been shared more than 280,000 times as of August 4.
Qawasameh has been in Israeli custody for an several weeks. Orders that his remand remain secret were lifted by Israeli military censors following Israel’s announcement that Operation Protective Edge has now successfully ended.