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“Bring a knife, dagger, or handgun,” kidnap Israeli civilians, and murder soldiers and settlers - Instructions on Facebook to Gazans for “March of Return”
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"Bring a knife, dagger, or handgun," 
kidnap Israeli civilians,
and murder soldiers and settlers
- Instructions on Facebook to Gazans
for "March of Return"
 
by Itamar Marcus and Nan Jacques Zilberdik

Two Palestinian Facebook pages and a forum directing rioters in Gaza gave explicit instructions to murder and kidnap Israelis on May 14, the day the US embassy opened in Jerusalem, as well as suggestions on how to accomplish this goal. It is not clear if Hamas itself was the group sending these messages. What is critical is that Gazans were encouraged to bring weapons to the demonstrations and use these weapons to either murder or capture Israelis. Israeli soldiers may have been facing Palestinians who were using the cover of demonstrating civilians to attempt to break through the border with the goal of murdering and kidnapping Israelis.
 
The following are the instructions to bring weapons, murder "soldiers and settlers," and kidnap Israeli citizens for use as bargaining chips to impose conditions on Israel:
 
"Rebelling young people,
Treat seriously and do not take lightly the requests to bring a knife, dagger, or handgun, if you have one, and to leave them under your clothes and not use them or show them, except if you identify one of the [Israeli] soldiers or settlers. Do not kill Israeli civilians, instead hand them over to the resistance immediately, because this is the point that Israel fears, as it knows that the capturer can set any condition he wants."



[Independent Palestinian Facebook page 
"The Great March of Return", May 14, 2018]
 
The instructions also described how masses of Palestinians would "collectively" breach the security fence aided by bulldozers:
 
"At a certain time... there will be a collective advance towards the barbed wire fence until we remove it with our strong hands and exposed bodies all at once, while being aided by loudspeakers and calls of 'Allahu Akbar' (i.e., Allah is greatest) by the masses. Therefore, do not advance individually, make do with the collective advance according to the instructions, because there will be bulldozers at the back that will advance in order to completely remove the fence."
 
Gazans were instructed not to deal with "the wounded or the Martyrs" but to concentrate on "the battlefield":
 
"Do not busy yourselves with the wounded or the Martyrs (Shahids), as the medical teams behind us are ready for this. Just pay attention to the battlefield and act wisely and according to the instructions."
 
The portrayal of the events in Gaza by some news agencies as peaceful demonstrations is clearly false.
 
The Facebook page "The Great March of Return" was opened in March 2018 and states its goal as "live and continuous coverage of the activities of the Great March of Return." It posts updates from the march every few minutes and has around 6,000 followers. It is not clear if Hamas itself is involved in this page. The second Facebook page that ran the post is called "Gaza Now," [May 13, 2018] but the post was later removed from this page. Likewise, the instructions were shared in a forum thread on the "March of Return" protests on a Palestinian web forum named "PALDF." [May 13, 2018]
 
The following is the full translation of the instructions to Gazans to bring weapons, and murder and kidnap Israelis:
 
Posted text: "#IMPORTANT #Instructions for participants:
Rebelling young people,
Tomorrow, Monday [May 14, 2018], we will begin by standing along Jakkar Road from Beit Hanoun to Rafah at 10:00 a.m., and at a certain time that we will notify you about later there will be a collective advance towards the barbed wire fence until we remove it with our strong hands and exposed bodies all at once, while being aided by loudspeakers and calls of 'Allahu Akbar' (i.e., Allah is greatest) by the masses. Therefore, do not advance individually, make do with the collective advance according to the instructions, because there will be bulldozers at the back that will advance in order to completely remove the fence.
 
Rebelling young people,
Treat seriously and do not take lightly the requests to bring a knife, dagger, or handgun, if you have one, and to leave them under your clothes and not use them or show them, except if you identify one of the [Israeli] soldiers or settlers. Do not kill an Israeli civilian, instead hand them over to the resistance immediately, because this is the point that Israel fears, as it knows that the capturer can set any condition he wants.
 
Rebelling young people,
Disperse the [Israeli] snipers and make them leave their posts and run, and always check the area, and think what to do and then act. Do not busy yourselves with the wounded or the Martyrs (Shahids), as the medical teams behind us are ready for this. Just pay attention to the battlefield and act wisely and according to the instructions."
[Independent Palestinian Facebook page "The Great March of Return", May 14, 2018]
 
The same text was also posted on the independent Palestinian Facebook page "Gaza Now" on May 13, 2018, but was later removed. Likewise it was shared in a forum thread about the March of Return protests in Gaza on the Palestinian website PALDF on May 13, 2018.