Kite Terror Causes Ecological Destruction in Israel

Kite Terror Causes Ecological Destruction in Israel

Those launching floating bombs should be treated no differently than hostile armed combatants.

June 6, 2018
Ari Lieberman
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Kite terror, the phenomena of Gaza’s “peaceful” Arab rioters utilizing free-floating kites and helium balloons to carry incendiaries and gasoline bombs into Israel, continues unabated and has in fact, intensified in recent days. Today alone, Israeli firefighters had to contend with nine separate blazes including one which threatened the campus of Sapir College in the southern Israeli town of Sderot.

Since April, Palestinian kite terrorists have set more than 270 fires, destroying 6,200 acres of farming land, forests and nature reserves, and causing an estimated $1.4 million in damages. The Carmia nature reserve has been particularly hard hit, with one-third of the reserve destroyed by fire.

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has ordered the National Security Council to deduct tax revenue collected by Israel on behalf of the Palestinian Authority to offset losses incurred by Gaza periphery farmers as a result of this new form of Palestinian terrorism. In addition, the Israel Defense Forces is devising technologies and strategies to deal with the problem. Some 500 incendiary-laden kites and balloons have been intercepted by specialized drones but clearly, more needs to be done to combat the menace.

The phenomenon of using arson as a form of terror is not new. In November 2016 Israel was forced to contend with a wave of arson-related fires started by PA Arabs as well as Israeli Arabs with the purpose of inflicting harm against Jews. In just over one week, Israeli and international firefighting teams brought the situation under control but not before the fires consumed nearly 600 apartments and houses and caused over $140 million in damage.