The Israel Security Agency revealed how Hamas uses Facebook to get new recruits, especially targeting college students in the fields of engineering and technology.
Israeli forces recently arrested three Hamas operatives in Judea and Samaria who were planning attacks after being recruited to the terrorist organization through social media, according to a report publicized by the Shabak (Israel Security Service, aka Shin Bet) in the Hebrew media.
Issa Shalalda, 21, and Amar Masoud, 20, revealed during their interrogation that Hamas activists in the Gaza Strip had convinced them through Facebook to be active participants in the terrorist infrastructure the organization has been trying to build in Judea and Samaria. The two recruits, who are members of a Hamas student group at Birzeit University near Ramallah, told the investigators that they had undergone various kinds of military training to enable them to carry out attacks, in addition to aiding the organization in the transfer of terror funding to others.
An indictment was recently filed, charging them with ties to terrorist entities and membership in a terrorist organization.
According to the report, another foiled terrorist, 24-year-old Hazam Hamil from the Samaria region, had connected through Facebook with a Hamas member in Gaza who used a fictitious profile. His terrorist handler instructed him to plan an attack and promised to send him money and weapons to carry it out. Hamil was indicted for having contact with the enemy.
The Shabak statement noted that senior members of Hamas’ military wing have made a concerted and sustained effort since 2015 to establish a secret and institutionalized terrorist infrastructure in Judea and Samaria, run from their base in the Gaza Strip. They have made a special effort to recruit Palestinians studying in the technology and engineering fields who could help them design and build bombs and other explosive devices.
Over the past three years, dozens of such recruits have been arrested by the IDF and Shabak in operations throughout Judea and Samaria.