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Israel’s Wildfires, The Aftermath: 1,700 Fires, 8 Days, 30 Arrests

Although the fires are finally out after 8 days of round-the-clock firefighting by firefighters representing a number of countries, Israeli officials are now assessing the damage and looking for ways to make emergency funding available immediately for those whose homes or businesses were lost. More than 1,700 wildfires were counted during the week of flames while police have arrested 30. Details about 13 of the detainees are not being released. It’s presumed that those were involved in setting at least some of the fires. The tax authority is treating certain fires as arson/terror and will make funding available only to those affected by the specifically designated fires. Of 1,773 fires, 39 were declared to be “major,” meaning it took at least ten fire crews to battle. In the category of “strange bedfellows, Middle East variety,” two of Israel’s leading nemeses were thanked for their assistance by two of Israel’s most prominent leaders. Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu phoned to thank Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas for sending firefighters to assist the effort in the West Bank; and Israeli President Reuven Rivlin phoned Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan to thank him for sending pilots to fly firefighting missions over the burning areas.