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by Dr. Hamid R. Roid
Thursday, Mar. 25, 2004 at 8:29 PM
This morning a would-be suicide bomber was apprehended near Nablus. The suicide bomber was a mentally slow 14 year old boy who was often the but of teasing by other youths. His "handlers" told him the only chance for him to have sex with 72 virgins was to blow himself up at a border crossing.
"My soldiers spotted Abdu as he pushed through the line of Palestinians waiting to undergo inspection and began racing toward them," said Guy. "He was four or five meters from them.
"Noticing that his shirt was padded, they called out to him to halt. They took cover, aimed their weapons at him, and told him to raise his hands. Then they asked him to lift his shirt and saw the belt of explosives. Seeing the soldiers' weapons, he became frightened and told the soldiers he was scared."
Soldiers also moved the Palestinians at the roadblock away. Abdu stood in isolation with his hands raised until sappers dispatched a robot carrying scissors to him and instructed him to cut the shoulder straps holding up the belt and to slip it off.
He was then told to strip to insure that no additional explosives were strapped to him.
He cut off part of it and struggled with the rest. "I don't how to get this off," he said.
"It is sad and tragic," said Guy. "He was fully aware of his actions and wanted to blow up, as he was promised 72 virgins in heaven and NIS 100," Guy said.
Abdu, who lives in Nablus, told interrogators he was jeered at by his friends who made fun of him, and decided to take advantage of the offer.
"Blowing myself up is the only chance I've got to have sex with 72 virgins in the Garden of Eden," Abdu said his handlers had told him.
Security officials have not ruled out the possibility that the same cell is responsible for dispatching both would-be bombers and that Hizbullah instructed it to launch the attacks.
Officials noted that terrorist organizations are encountering difficulties in launching attacks from the city and are using children, who they believe will be less likely to be inspected.
Guy said that following the capture of Kuran, officials studied ways of enhancing security at roadblocks around the city, taking into account that terrorists might again attempt to use children.
Thirty-one suicide bombers have been younger than 18, and more than 40 minors who were actively involved in planning suicide bombings have been arrested. Since May 2001, 22 shootings and bombings were perpetrated by minors.
Israeli officials expressed shock at the second use of a young boy as a suicide bomber.
"No matter how many times Israel learns of the use of children for suicide bombings, it is shocking on each occasion," said Dore Gold, an adviser to Prime Minister Ariel Sharon. "Israelis do not understand how Palestinians are willing to sacrifice their own children in order to kill ours."
Physicians for Human Rights also condemned the use of children, calling it "illegal and immoral."
Abdu's family said the teenager was not affiliated with any group, but went to rallies and identified with whichever group had carried out the latest attack.
They said he acted strangely Tuesday, giving out candy to his family and neighbors and refusing to explain why. He got his hair cut in the style his mother, Tamam, likes and told her he would do anything she wants.
"You never are like this," she said "What happened?"
"I just want you to be happy with me," he responded.
He left his house Wednesday morning saying he was going to school, but never arrived there.
Hosni Abdu said he was furious with whomever persuaded his brother to become a suicide bomber. "The ones who sent him are stupid, because the army will give him two slaps and he will tell them who sent him," he said.
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