Training Kids for Terror

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CBNNews.com - GAZA BORDER - For most kids, summer is a time for vacation, a break from the classroom, homework and tests, time to have fun with family and friends.

But in the Gaza Strip, that's not the case. Here thousands of Palestinian children participating in summer camp programs are being trained to be future terrorists.

This summer, the temporary cease-fire between Israel and Hamas, which began June 19, has not only provided a time for Hamas to regroup, but also allowed more time to recruit a new wave of kids to become the fighters of the future.

Click play to get Pat Robertson's analysis following this CBN News report.

In Gaza's summer camps, children learn that Jews are to be hated and killed.

CBN News spoke with Itamar Marcus, director of Palestinian Media Watch, an organization that monitors Palestinian culture, including schools and summer camps, to understand, among other things, how the children are being raised.

"There are a couple of levels to turning an innocent child into a terrorist," Marcus said.

"The first one is pumping him up with hatred. The second one is training him with weaponry so that he will feel empowered. You put that together with the weaponry and when he grows older, he will be a terrorist," he said.

While the US is pushing hard for a two-state solution between Israel and the Palestinians, in Hamas-run Gaza, they're preparing for one state -- Palestine -- minus Israel. And they're raising the next generation to believe they can make that vision reality.

Fifteen-year-old Samir is a bomb-maker who also mentors pre-teens and teens.

"We manufacture everything locally in order to strike," Samir told CBN News.

"Zionists, we will strike you anywhere, kill you and defeat you until you leave our land," he said. "I began learning how to make bombs and resist the Jews when I was 14 years. Now, I am able to make hand grenades and land mines," he said.

Samir is proud of his ability to manufacture anti-tank land mines. He knows just how much explosives to pack inside and how to wire the mines for detonation.

"Now, we manufacture a local grenade. It is a plastic tube. We fill it to the top with TNT, and wrap it up with tape, and here is the result," Samir explained.

CBN News followed a cell of five boys, ages 12 to 16.

"We don't play like other kids because we are a part of jihad ["holy" war] since we were children. We have to kick the Jews out of our land and liberate Jerusalem," one youngster said.

Another 15-year-old instructor showed us his rife and grenades.

"The weapon's name is Carlo," he explained, "and it is made by our people. Here is the ammo clips with bullets in it. It can fire. Here is a sound grenade, and this one is an explosive grenade, and here is the safety valve," he explained.

Back at the Jerusalem Bureau, we showed Marcus some of the footage we'd shot in Gaza.

"This is a tremendous empowering of the child," Marcus said, as he listened to the teenage instructor.

"He feels like he is in control. He knows how the weapons work. [It] makes him feel way, way beyond his age, making him feel like he's going to be a fighter. He's going to kill with it," he said.

It's hard for people in Western cultures to imagine children being raised in an environment that embraces killing.

"I always tell people, 'Take off your cultural glasses and put on the glasses of the other culture," Marcus said.

"You wake up in the morning and you rush to the newspaper to see how your baseball team did last night. And these people get up in the morning and they're praying for the destruction of the Christian and Jewish worlds replaced by Islam, that we shall finally win the Crusader wars.' It's a different world view," he said.

Despite their youth and innocent faces, the children's mentors are teaching them to choose the way of death.

"That many or some of these people might in the future participate in terror is certainly something that everyone should be concerned about," Marcus said.

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