Hamas seems to have found its sweet spot.

Under cover of civilian protests, backed by clouds of smoke from burning tires, it sends operatives to try to breach the Israeli border fence. A fence breach would be used to surge hundreds or even thousands of people into Israeli giving Hamas a propaganda victory. Such a breach also would be used by Hamas military operatives for terror operations — that’s why such a high percentage of those killed at the fence have been Hamas or other terror group military members.

We have covered this Hamas tactic in numerous prior posts:

Western leftists, particularly in the media, are repeating the false claim that these are peaceful protests by civilians who pose no threat. Amnesty International — which always is hostile to Israel — has issued a call for an international arms embargo against Israel because of its use of deadly force. But these are no mere protests, they are attempts to invade a military border and that puts the use of deadly force in a completely different context.

The protests so far are a mere prelude to the big event, when Hamas plans to surge thousands, perhaps tens of thousands, of people toward the border fence on May 15, 2018, the day after the 70th Anniversary of Israel’s founding (using the Christian calendar) and “Nakba Day,” the day on which Palestinians mourn the creation of Israel.

The most recent protest, on Friday, April 27, 2018, tested more methods for breaching the fence. The Times of Israel reports:

Hundreds of Palestinians converged on the Gaza Strip’s border fence with Israel on Friday, trying to rip through it before drawing Israeli fire in one of the most violent incidents yet in five weeks of protests.

Three people were killed and over 300 hurt in Friday’s rallies, the Gaza Strip’s Hamas-run health ministry said, as thousands of Palestinians converged on the border with Israel for a fifth round of weekly protests.

In a statement, the Israeli military said it “thwarted” an attempted infiltration by Palestinian protesters.

It said “hundreds of rioters” tried to burn the fence and enter the Israel. It said the crowd threw explosives, firebombs and rocks, and that troops opened fire “in accordance with the rules of engagement” and halted the crowd.

This map posted by the IDF Spokesperson shows the location of the surge in relation to an Israeli community Kibbutz Nahal Oz:

https://twitter.com/LTCJonathan/status/990298053759373312

This photo shows young men pulling away the barbed wire outer fence to clear access to the main fence:

https://twitter.com/IDFSpokesperson/status/989890075067547649

This video shows men pulling a rope to try to tear down the fencing:

https://twitter.com/ShehabAgency/status/990192858022993921

CBS News described the tactic:

A group of Palestinian activists calling themselves “the tires unit” arrived Friday on a truck laden with old tires. A van mounted with loudspeakers followed the truck with chants and applause. Tires were set ablaze, filling the air with thick smoke. With hooks and a long rope, the activists pulled at parts of the barbed wire adjacent to the fence.

Even the NY Times, which tends to portray Israel in the worst possible light, reported on how serious the attempt to storm the fence was, Plan to Storm Fence Gets Bloody Preview in Gaza:

…. urged on by a Hamas leader in a fiery midafternoon speech, rushed the security barrier at the eastern edge of Gaza City and tried to cross into Israel.

Dozens made it through a barbed-wire barrier about 30 yards inside Gaza territory, deploying wire cutters, hooks and winches….

Colonel Conricus said that Friday’s crowds totaled 12,000 to 14,000. Around 5 p.m., when the protest seemed to be winding down uneventfully, he said, “between 500 and 700 rioters assaulted the fence in a way that we have not seen them assault it before.”
He said the effort to breach the fence “shows exactly what we are talking about.”

“This is not a peaceful demonstration,” he said. “There’s nothing serene about this. They’re trying to infiltrate into Israel, damage our infrastructure and kill Israelis.”…

Friday’s demonstration at the eastern edge of Gaza City — adjacent to the old Karni Crossing, a cargo terminal that allowed goods to cross between Israel and Gaza until it was shut down in 2011 — had been largely peaceful until late in the afternoon.

But then the senior Hamas leader Ismail Radwan gave a rousing speech, urging the protesters not to fear death but to welcome martyrdom.

“When we are brave, we are getting closer toward martyrdom, martyrdom, martyrdom,” he said.

Thousands began streaming toward the barrier fence, setting off a tremendous barrage of tear gas from the Israeli side that did not deter many.

Hamas leaders were out in full force leading the “protests” (from a safe distance, of course):

https://twitter.com/qassam_arabic12/status/989880788685676547

https://twitter.com/qassam_arabic12/status/989962657552850944

This video show the surge towards the border fence under the cover, once again, of burning tires:

This video shows the attempts to cross the fence as the riots were going on in the background.

This shows attempts to burn a hole in the fence:

Palestinians are producing videos glorifying the storming of the fence:

“Protesters” brought children to the front lines:

https://twitter.com/ofirgendelman/status/990307125028155394

This casualty of the violence clearly was an Israeli “war crime”: