Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Farris Hassan's Day Off: Student Visits Iraq

On Dec. 11, Farris Hassan, 16, of Ft. Lauderdale bought a $900 plane ticket, cut class, sneaked away from his parents and headed to Iraq on a flight from Lebanon, saying that he was pursuing his interest in news reporting as suggested by his high-school journalism teacher.
Now that Hassan's been found, his anguished -- yet somewhat proud -- mother, Shatha Atiya, a psychologist, is telling NBC News: "I have no idea how he did it."

Farris, a junior at the exclusive Pine Crest prep school, is the youngest child of a South Florida physician, the Iraqi-born Redha Hassan and his wife, both of whom have lived in the U.S. for more than 30 years, say reports.

As for why he did it, Farris apparently was determined to witness Iraq's struggle for democracy firsthand. Yet Redha Hassan told his local paper, the South Florida Sun-Sentinel, that the only warning his son left behind was an e-mail. "He said, 'Don't worry about me, I will be safe.'"

Continue reading on Teen People

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2 are talkin':

Marc said...

It is tempting to praise Farris for his resourcefulness and his courage. He will have great stories to tell for a lifetime. As a journalist, I wish I could spend if only a few days in Iraq to cover the biggest news story of the past three years. But the skills and balls Farris used to reach Baghdad, and return in one piece, are outweighed by his stupidity — a trait he will have to overcome if wants to succeed, and live, as a journalist. As his mother concluded, in a tremendous understatement: "He showed a lack of judgment."

Anonymous said...

You're right. The more I think about his actions the more I realize just how stupid he was for doing it.

Guess I was just caught up in the story to start with.

I have to admit, I could never do something like that.