The IDF is taking the fight to the terrorists who are aiming to unleash wildfires and explosives on Israeli territory using balloons and kites. Over the weekend, Israeli aircraft “targeted the vehicle of one of the leaders of the squads that launched arson and explosive balloons and kites from the northern Gaza Strip,” according to a Twitter post on Sunday morning from the IDF Spokesperson, representing an escalation in Israel’s response to the threat to their civilians.
“Recently, the IDF has warned numerous times against these launches. These are acts of terror that endanger Israeli residents living in southern Israel,” the IDF Spokesperson said as part of a series of Twitter posts. “The IDF is determined to continue to act with increasing intensity against these acts of terror. The Hamas terror organization is responsible for everything happening in and from the Gaza Strip, and it will bear the consequences.”
The kite and balloon-driven terrorism had continued over weekend, with Israeli Police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld tweeting, “Policeman & firefighters responded to fires around Gaza Strip area after balloons & kites sent by terrorists landed in Israel’s open areas.” This followed a Rosenfeld post on Friday of a video showing Israeli bomb disposal units safely detonating an explosive device carried by balloon from Gaza on an Israeli highway.
The threat of Gaza fire kites and balloons laden with explosives has become a significant menace. The Times of Israel reported in early June that authorities said the hundreds of kites and balloons wielding flame have ignited more than 200 fires since March 30.
Israel has responded to the attacks on their civilian communities by shooting at the terrorists behind the efforts, including another round of shots fired at balloon arsonists on Sunday, per a Twitter post from the IDF Spokesperson. However, the targeting of a terror cell leader’s vehicle underscores how serious the IDF is taking the threat and, according to a separate round of tweets from the IDF Spokesperson, this follows the targeting last week of a Hamas “observation post” near a launching site of explosive and arson balloons.
Tweeted the IDF Spokesperson after that response, “The IDF views the use of incendiary balloons and kites with great severity and will operate to prevent their use.”
(By Joshua Spurlock, www.themideastupdate.com, June 17, 2018)