Five days ago, I was on campus at Birzeit university near Ramallah. I was leaving around 4:15pm and found an unusually large crowd of students around the exit gate. Tired as I was, I gave it little thought and moved on. As soon as I got home I heard from my flatmates that a students had been kidnapped from the university campus by undercover Israeli agents merely 15 min before I left. Disguised as university students, they suddenly got out guns, pinned him to the ground, started shooting in the air and took off with him in a military vehicle. Here is the video of the kidnapping and here is the statement put out by the university.
There is much to be said but perhaps the most pertinent comment was by my Palestinian flatmate, “They could have taken him from home. They could have even picked him up from the market. But no, they had to barge disguised into a university campus firing guns and threatening to shoot other students.”
So we are talking about a dangerous fugitive… that decided to attend university classes on the run.
It’s all about sending that message, the same one as always – you have no power.