TEL AVIV – Terror condoms. That’s the answer to the question “whatever will they come up with next?” posed by Breitbart Jerusalem earlier this month when rioting Gazans added helium balloons to their growing repertoire of airborne fire-starters. The last few days have seen Palestinians booby-trapping condoms before launching them over the border into Israel.
The explosive condoms, which are filled with helium, have generated several dozen blazes in southern Israel.
The move to condoms comes after three months of using children’s toys including kites and helium balloons.
The Tax Authority has stated that more than NIS 5 million ($1.4 million) in damage has been caused by the fires since the beginning of April, destroying thousands of acres of farmland.
The IDF has fired warning shots towards groups of Palestinians preparing the incendiary devices. The weekend saw more than 20 new fires start each day, resulting in air force strikes on targets. On Sunday evening, the army struck three targets including an operating tent from which people had flown attack kites laden with burning petrol and explosive devices over the border, setting alight large swaths of land.
Israel said last week that it would limit the amount of helium allowed into the Hamas-run Gaza Strip as a result of the terror kites. The gas is being used by Palestinians to increase the distances covered by the incendiary devices.
“The entrance of helium gas into the Gaza Strip will be limited in light of the use of it by terrorists to fill incendiary balloons,” Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman said. “The Hamas terror[ist] group does not hesitate to use any means, including humanitarian services and channels, in order to carry out terrorist activities. This is despite the efforts by Israel to prevent a deterioration of the civilian situation in the Strip.”
— Hazem Balousha (@iHaZeMi) June 16, 2018
The attack kites have been decorated to include swastikas, the Palestinian flag, and warnings to Israel.
On Friday, a balloon with a bomb attached and bearing the inscription “I Love You” blocked a highway in the South for an hour before police sappers arrived to neutralize the device.
“These are terror attacks that endanger the residents of southern Israel,” the IDF said in a statement.
Education Minister Naftali Bennett on Monday called on the IDF to fire directly at Palestinians launching the terror kites.
“Explosive kites and burning balloons are not a children’s toy. They are a deadly weapon meant to kill our children,” he said.
“We must stop shooting near the target and move to shooting directly at it.”
On Sunday, hundreds of turkeys in a kibbutz near the Gaza border on Sunday died from smoke inhalation as a result of fires sparked by the incendiary devices.