Like a lead balloon

Balloons and kites from Gaza are war crimes

Recently there has been much on social media about the Gazan use of incendiary kites and balloons as weapons of war.

If anyone else but the privileged Palestinians had launched them they would be condemned as a clear war crime.


No soup for you
Protocol III of the UN Convention on Conventional Weapons which governs the use of incendiary weapons:

  • prohibits the use of incendiary weapons against civilians (effectively a reaffirmation of the general prohibition on attacks against civilians in Additional Protocol I to the Geneva Conventions)
  • prohibits the use of air-delivered incendiary weapons against military targets located within concentrations of civilians and loosely regulates the use of other types of incendiary weapons in such circumstances.

Red BalloonsArticle 54 of Protocol I of the 1977 Geneva Conventions:

  • bans destroying the food supply of the civilian population in an area of conflict, without restricting itself to burning.

The balloons are often filled with medical grade helium, essential for MRI machines. In this way, balloon and kite terrorists put sick Gazans at risk, apart from courting an Israeli response. Surely using medical supplies as weapons classifies as an additional war crime?

On occasion condoms are filled with gas as impromptu balloons playing a small part in Gaza’s exploding population. (No pun intended but feel free to comment with your own dirty joke).

(Laser) light at the end of the tunnel

Condom balloons

Masked Palestinians attach incendiary devices to inflated condoms filled with helium gas.

Necessity is the mother of invention. Israel has announced Light Blade, a new laser system designed to intercept airborne incendiary threats of this type. It also will be used to bring down small drones.

The downed aerial incendiaries will undoubtedly drop their cargo over Gazan crops, homes and demonstrators. That, hopefully, will reduce the incentive to use them.

Hamas is great with childrenSome reports say that IDF marksmen don’t shoot at those launching balloons and kites at the regular Friday, so-called ‘March of Return’, demonstrations if they stay a sufficient distance from the fence.

Who thinks that is a great idea?

Extra credit


‘No soup for you’ cartoon © Elhanan Ben Uri.
From Gaza to Israel‘ cartoon shared from Zionist Pugs.
Hamas is great with children‘ cartoon© Elad Jalapeño Shmueli

About David Guy

B.A./B.C.A. (Communication and Media Arts) University of Wollongong, AUSTRALIA M.A. in Government (Diplomacy and Conflict Studies) Inter Disciplinary Center, Herzliya, ISRAEL Twitter @5MFI
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