Students Not Surprised by Arrests

Ad Feedback - JERUSALEM, Israel - Students at Hebrew University's Givat Ram and Mt. Scopus campuses were not surprised by the arrest of six students suspected of ties to al-Qaeda.

The Shin Bet (General Security Agency) and the police quietly carried out the arrest operation last week.

According to police, the six students often met at the al-Aqsa Mosque on Jerusalem's Temple Mount, one of Islam's most well-known mosques.

The six confessed to planning terror acts, including a plot last May to attack a helicopter carrying President George W. Bush during his trip to Israel.

The group frequently visited al-Qaeda Web sites for instructions on how to build explosives.

The six students were not particularly well known on campus.

"They were quiet," Giuliani, a fellow classmate, said. "They didn't interact much with the other students. Even during class, they didn't talk much, but if you ask me, what they did, it's like spitting in the well you drink from."

Hebrew University has two Jerusalem campuses, one in Givat Ram and the other on Mount Scopus. The six suspects attended classes on both campuses.

According to fellow students, Arab radicalism can be found on either campus.

"There's a large Arab student body here," one student at the Mt. Scopus campus said.

"At the beginning of the year, they held a large protest against the IDF's blockade of Gaza. They were out there with keffiyehs [traditional Arab headdresses], shouting and antagonizing the Jewish students. When the Jewish students responded, it got violent. Things have been quiet since then, but we know [the undercurrent] is there."

All six suspects were charged with membership in a terrorist organization, and some were also charged with possessing propaganda supporting a terror organization, soliciting others to join a terror organization, and aiding the enemy during war.

Source: The Jerusalem Post

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