Three Israelis Try to Fly Flaming Kite Into Gaza Strip, Start Fire in Israeli Territory

Right-wing activist, one of three men detained by police, cites attempt to make ‘amusing video’

Almog Ben Zikri
Almog Ben Zikri
Screenshot from video showing right-wing activists with kite.
Screenshot from video showing right-wing activists with kite. Credit: Courtesy of Ran Karmi Buzaglo
Almog Ben Zikri
Almog Ben Zikri

Three Israeli men were detained for questioning Friday after a burning kite they tried to fly into the Gaza Strip fell on the Israeli side of the border, setting off a small brushfire.

Ran Karmi Buzaglo, the only man whose name was released, later claimed the stunt was an effort to make a video “to amuse and strengthen the morale of local residents who have suffered as a result of the ‘kite terrorism.’”

The fire was quickly extinguished and the three men were taken into police custody for questioning. A video of the incident filmed by one of the three shows Karmi Buzaglo and a second man setting fire to a piece of cloth tied to a kite and trying to fly it into Gaza. It ends with the kite falling inside Israeli, followed by someone shouting “no, no, no.”

Video filmed by right-wing activists near Gaza borderCredit: Ran Karmi Buzaglo

In another video filmed before the incident, Karmi Buzaglo addresses Hamas political chief Ismail Haniyeh in Arabic, saying: “Listen, man, don’t toy with us,” before continuing in Hebrew: “We are here on the Gaza border. We will teach them how to do it right. We have prepared gifts for them. Soon they will understand that everything they know how to do, we know how to do better.”

Karmi Buzaglo recently mocked the use of incendiary kites by protesting Palestinians. “The best minds of IMI [Systems, an Israeli weapons manufacturer] are developing a laser beam that will intercept kites,” he wrote on Twitter. “The development will be operational in 2025 and will cost nearly $1 billion. Meanwhile, the possibility is being considered of putting a bullet in the head of every terrorist who flies a kite bomb.”

Karmi Buzaglo, 54, led a public campaign in support of Elor Azaria, the Israeli soldier convicted of shooting a dead a wounded assailant in Hebron in 2016. He added the name Buzaglo to his own three years ago to protest derogatory remarks by Jewish religious figures about Mizrahi Jews.

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