In what appears to be a new breed of Islamic terrorist attacks, Israel was set ablaze this week by arsonists whose fires have forced masses of Israelis to evacuate their homes – with 80,000 fleeing on Thanksgiving Day from the flames scorching the Haifa area alone.
Security services have worked nonstop to quench the dangerous wind-driven flames, but WND reports that many Israelis are still recuperating from their loses that local officials believe were incurred mostly at the hands of Muslim terrorists setting the nation ablaze.
Dozens of Israelis have been injured in the numerous wildfires that have burned for several days this week, but Israeli Public Security Minister Gilad Erdan recently announced that the blazes were generally being brought “under control,” according to the Jerusalem Post.
Acts of terrorism
Affirming that the fires are being considered an act of terrorism against the Jewish State, Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu maintained that a number of the fires were set by arsonists, who he promised will be treated as terrorists. He noted that Israeli authorities have observed an “encouragement to arson” on social media channels, but indicated that a definitive answer on the matter was still pending, according to Agence France-Presse (AFP).
“Every fire caused by arson or incitement to arson is terror and will be treated as such,” Netanyahu asserted.
Corroborating with Netanyahu’s account, Erdan maintained that approximately half of the blazes across the nation were caused by arson, after noting that firefighters, police and Homefront Command forces were working together to put out the fires raging across the country, AFP reports.
Israeli Education Minister Naftali Bennet indicated that the Muslim Arab minority living in Israel was responsible for the inferno attack.
“Only those to whom the country does not belong are capable of burning it,” Bennett posted on Twitter.
Not taking kindly to the accusations by Israeli officials, Ayman Odeh, who serves as the chief of the Arab coalition in parliament, insisted that such comments constituted “incitement” against Arabs, the French news agency noted.
It was also reported that many Arabs in Israel expressed jubilation over the ignited infernos.
“Countless [people were] gloating over the recent rash of fire plaguing Israel,” YnetNews documented in a report.
Iszaat al-Risheq, an official of the Palestinian terrorist group, Hamas, told his social media following that the blazes were a form of judgment from the god of Islam.
“They tried to ban the muezzin’s call, and Allah rained fire on them,” al-Risheq expressed on Twitter, according to YnetNews, which also noted that Israel is now considering noise limits on the calls to Muslim prayers that are made numerous times each day.
Islamic enemies to the Jewish State expressed that they were anxious to see the fires cause more destruction to strategic Israeli facilities.
“Some people posted their hopes that the fires would reach strategic facilities in Israel – like the Haifa Chemicals plants, gas storage facilities across the country, and IDF bases that have large arms depots,” the YnetNews report continued.
Using the Twitter hashtag #Israelisburning, Palestinians and other Arabs were witnessed celebrating the fires, according to a report from Reuters.
Roni Alsheich, a local police spokesman, elaborated more on the hostile Arab reaction to the fires.
“It’s likely that where it was arson – it goes in the direction of nationalistic,” he shared with reporters.
Taking advantage of the conditions
According to Noah Wolfson, who reported about the atmospheric conditions of Israel for the meteorology website, Meteo-Tech, conditions are ideal to set Israel ablaze.
“The extreme dryness – relative humidity below 10 percent – coupled with very strong winds, enhance and encourage any small fire to expand and be horrendous,” Wolfson told AFP.
Beginning earlier in the week, a number of fires were reported to be burning in the region for a few days, with the flames getting worse later in the week.
“[On Thursday, the fires] intensified … fueled by unseasonably dry weather and strong easterly winds,” Reuters divulged.
The severity of the flames around the region escalated to the extent that surrounding nations offered their assistance to put out the infernos.
“They were burning in the forests west of Jerusalem, near Haifa and in parts of the West Bank,” WND informed. “Israel even had asked for help from its neighbors to fight the conflagration. Several aircraft responded, to drop fire retardant on the worst of the flames, after Turkey, Russia, Greece, Cyprus and Croatia offered to help. The Post said Russia sent two planes and crews to fight the fires, Greece sent three planes, Italy two and Cyprus sent the only one it had. Even Turkey – which has had limited relations with Israel since the Mavi Marmara confrontation in 2010 – sent one firefighting aircraft and promised a second.”
Jerusalem, which is home to numerous biblical sites, was not spared by the blazes.
“[Local images showed a] wall of flames raging through central neighborhoods of Israel’s largest city,” Reuters announced. “A thick haze of smoke hung over Haifa, which rises up from the Mediterranean Sea overlooking a large port. Schools and universities were evacuated, and two nearby prisons transferred inmates to other jails, a prisons service spokesman said.”
Hospitals were also endangered by the flames, as many patients were forced to evacuate.
Also evacuated were Israelis living in eight different neighborhoods in Haifa, where Micky Rosenfeld informed AFP that six separate fires raged across eight neighborhoods. A rescue services official noted that flames were jumping “from one house to the other” there.
Naftali Rottenberg, who assisted with the evacuation effort, said things got very heated when Israelis were forced to leave their homes
“Sometimes we are taking residents out against their will,” Rottenberg stated on public radio.
Even though hundreds of homes were damaged, with others being completely demolished, miraculously no deaths were reported by week’s end. Yael Hame, who resides in Haifa, insisted that the latest fires are worse than the wildfires that scorched Israel six years ago in 2010, when 44 Israelis lost their lives.
“The fire was up over the skyscrapers,” Hame recounted to AFP. “It came up to 20 stories high.”
Transportation in Israel’s largest cities was hindered by the fires, which continue to be under investigation.
“The major highway route between Jerusalem and Tel Aviv was temporarily closed, as flames approached Modi’in, between the two,” WND’s Bob Unruh informed “Erdan revealed multiple suspects were arrested, although details of the individuals or claims against them were not immediately available. He confirmed the issue will be investigated thoroughly.”