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Copyright © 2019 The American Israel Public Affairs Committee

Hamas Develops New More Lethal Airborne Weapons

A balloon attached to “hazardous chemicals” prepared by a Hamas-affiliated terrorist.

In the wake of Hamas’ deadly barrage of rockets into southern Israel communities this May, the terrorist group has resumed airborne arson attacks against Israel—now with a new and deadlier twist.

Since 2018 alone, thousands of airborne incendiary weapons have caused 2,000 fires in the area surrounding Gaza—damaging nearly 9,000 acres of Israeli public and agricultural land, destroying millions of dollars in Israeli produce and ravaging local ecosystems.

Until recently, the deadly devices utilized in this offensive have been relatively simple and predictable, consisting primarily of Molotov cocktails or bombs attached to kites or balloons. In response, the IDF developed methods to destroy these weapons, particularly by using specialty drones and sniper rifle modifications. Israel’s defensive tactics have resulted in less damage from these attacks, forcing Gazan terrorists to reconfigure their arsenal to continue hurting Israelis.

Hamas and its allies have now created new airborne weapons to threaten civilians. One new weapon consists of a slow-burning fuse dipped in gas attached to a cluster of balloons. The device gradually drops flaming gas onto the ground to expand the affected area.

Another model, intended to be dropped into civilian areas, utilizes containers of poisonous chemicals attached to balloons. On June 10, “the Sons of Zawari,” a Hamas-aligned terror group, released a video of their operatives launching balloons attached to “hazardous chemicals” towards a southern Israeli community.

These new aerial weapons pose a consistent threat to IDF forces and civilians in the area around the Gaza Strip. The devices require Israel to expend additional resources and develop new counter-measures to protect its citizens. It remains vital for the United States to support Israeli actions to defend its citizens from these indiscriminate attacks.

Type: News Hub