Photo Credit: IDF
The fire being guarded by this mob of Hamas-led rioters is one of many, including some burning tires -- the thick, oily black smoke is useful for hiding attempted terror attacks and breaches of the border fence on August 25, 2021

Four days after an IDF soldier was shot in the head and critically wounded by a rioting terrorist at the Gaza border, the Israeli military once again found itself trying to contain another round of multi-site violence along the border security fence.

On Saturday afternoon and evening, hundreds of Hamas followers had gathered to riot along the fence on the border of northern Gaza, trying to climb the fence protecting Israel’s border, and hurling IED (improvised explosive devices) at IDF soldiers. Some also came with their guns; one who was barely a teenager shot St. Sergeant Bar-El Shmueli, an undercover officer with the Border Guard Police, in the head at point-blank range. IDF soldiers had been ordered not to shoot or respond with gunfire.

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Following multiple surgeries on Sunday, Shmueli is still in critical condition, unconscious and intubated.

More than a thousand “protesters” showed up Wednesday to follow Hamas leadership back to the security fence.

Photos distributed by Hamas, clearly intended for foreign eyes, showed the terrorists dressed up in neon yellow traffic safety vests, peacefully herding followers away from the security fence.

One might be inclined to wonder why Israel’s Channel 12 News reported Wednesday evening that IDF soldiers responded to the “protests” with tear gas and other riot dispersal means.

If one looks at photographs not snapped by Hamas terrorists, one might uncover the real reason for the IDF’s defensive posture.

It is for that reason the IDF also makes sure to photograph events at the border and tweet them publicly as soon as possible; to fend off international lawfare attempts and to make sure political reality testing is kept intact.

In a message passed on by Egyptian mediators and several other conduits, the United States had reportedly demanded earlier in the day that Hamas “restrain” the Gaza “demonstrations” and avoid an escalation while Israeli Prime Minister Naftali Bennett is in the White House on Thursday for a meeting with President Joe Biden.

The message came after a military assessment by the IDF that said Gaza terror factions and Iran’s Lebanese proxy Hezbollah might attempt to fire rockets towards Israel from Gaza and Lebanon during the Biden – Bennett meeting, as they did from Gaza during the signing ceremony of the Abraham Accords by the US, Israel, UAE and Bahrain last September at the White House.

Bennett met with Secretary of State Antony Blinken, Defense Secretary Lloyd Austin, and other senior administration officials on Wednesday.

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Hana Levi Julian is a Middle East news analyst with a degree in Mass Communication and Journalism from Southern Connecticut State University. A past columnist with The Jewish Press and senior editor at Arutz 7, Ms. Julian has written for Babble.com, Chabad.org and other media outlets, in addition to her years working in broadcast journalism.