A threatening video circulating on social media has prompted the Israel Defense Forces to set up their Iron Dome systems in central Israel, including the area surrounding Tel Aviv and the Eurovision 2019 venue.

Israel’s Iron Dome is a defense system designed to intercept and destroy short-range rockets and artillery shells. Its various batteries, or units, have been operational since 2011 and can destroy projectiles from distances of four to 70 kilometers away.

The system has largely been deployed in the south of the country, near the Gaza Strip, from which Hamas has typically fired its rockets.

But as Mako report, Israeli officials set up batteries in the center of the country on Tuesday, apparently to protect Gush Dan — the region that is home to the Tel Aviv EXPO, the home of Eurovision 2019.

The decision comes after Hamas published a threatening video, which shows the Tel Aviv EXPO in the crosshairs of a targeted airstrike. We have chosen not to publish the video here, but you can visit the Mako story (liked above) if you’d like to view it.

Pundits have suggested that Hamas is using the video to pressure Israel into a cease fire agreement. It also conveys just how important hosting Eurovision is to Israel, given that Hamas is attempting to leverage it to a larger end.

At the same time, it’s known that Hamas relies heavily on its public image. Attacking a large scale international event would be a PR catastrophe. A target on Eurovision would be an attack on citizens of dozens of countries present for the event.

You’ll recall that in March two rockets were fired at Tel Aviv from the Gaza Strip for the first time since the 2014 war. In retaliation, the IDF hit more than 100 Hamas targets in Gaza.

The recent video comes just days after an Israeli delegation of business leaders and government reps had to cancel a trip to Bahrain. Another animated video was released at that time threatening the Israeli delegation. In that video, an Israeli plane landed in Bahrain, and a bomber released a bomb onto the delegation’s hotel.

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keith mawsonWhiskerMarty Mc CUAlon I sraelConanAnubis Recent comment authors
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Marty Mc CU
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Marty Mc CU

Talk and focus on the song contest guys . Love and live the music, Only a few weeks to go and we have a winner. Propaganda comes from all directions. There is controversy where it actually came from . Despite that it doesn’t have a place in our beloved Eurovision. Ignore !

Loin dici
Guest

Aside from appreciating the effort made by the Israeli security forces, the stage inside looks great:
https://youtu.be/81lUUwZKS44

Roy Moreno
Guest
Roy Moreno

(From Israel)
Leaving politics aside, I trust IDF’s ability to protect the area, Israel in general is great in terms of security
I’m sure it will be a wonderful and peaceful show in May
Let’s not let Terrorism win

La Signora
Guest
La Signora

Security first! Israel is very good at it anyway

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

off topic: a daily program about eurovision in KAN ..so far 3 chapters… it’s in hebrew but you can see also daily news about the progress of this year’s eurovision..
it’s called “good evening europe”
here is the youtube link for the search result page:
https://www.youtube.com/results?search_query=%D7%A2%D7%A8%D7%91+%D7%98%D7%95%D7%91+%D7%90%D7%99%D7%A8%D7%95%D7%A4%D7%94

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Too bad I don’t understand Hebrew. Only ken, lo, toda raba, bevakasha, bete avon, and of course, my favorite word, Shalom.

La Signora
Guest
La Signora

Good for you, hebrew is a very interesting language. I speak it kinda ok but not fluently, if I understand something about the program I will translate it 🙂

Una
Guest
Una

That’s so nice of you. I know Romanian and try to bring new information on Romania’s entry. Just like Hebrew, Romanian is not spoken much outside Romania so I try to contribute in my own way with some comments for the community.

La Signora
Guest
La Signora

Cool, Romanian is similar to Italian, my native language 🙂

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

That would be great, La Signora, I appreciate that and toda raba. Well you have the potential to become fluent then, that’s (fill in the Hebrew word for fantastic) 🙂

La Signora
Guest
La Signora

A hebrew word you can use to say fantastic is “gadol” (literally means big). I’m watching the first episode and it’s already hilarious! They are talking about the worst notes sung by Eurovision acts with Kobi Marimi and Lucy Ayoub. If there’s something specific you want to know tell me the minute of the video because it’s pretty long to translate everything 🙂

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Oh thanks! I’ve been watching it, indeed, those clips are hilarious. Although the last guy in white was quite ok? I heard the word “gadol” :). And the sound of Home in the beginning made my heart grow, I absolutely love that song.
It would be nice if KAN provided English subtitles as well. But in case you learn something interesting, please share and toda! 🙂

La Signora
Guest
La Signora

Yes, the last guy is Izhar Cohen (he won in 1978 representing Israel), I think that they put him the list because of the back singer. I love that they put PingPong in this list, even though it makes my ears bleed that song heals my sadness lol

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

i am willing to teach you whenever you ask . you can say “fantasti” for the english fantastic or “gadol” (=big) or “anak” (=huge)

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Fantasti! Toda!

David
Guest
David

Some kids make a silly video, and people start freaking out? Would you do the same, if they threatened attacking the event in any other country, like cancelling going to London etc? Tel Aviv is very safe, it will be the best ESC ever, with a great party atmosphere.

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Even if kids made a silly video authorities must investigate and determine its relevance. But yes, if you asked me, Tel Aviv is much safer than London.

Una
Guest
Una

Wiwibloggs, you know I like you *a lot* but come on. There is no need whatsoever for such article. Not only that Israel lives under threat every day but the country have spent a lot of money, logistics and so on on security for this event. Why propagate whatever news especially when it’s about such a sensitive topic?

And please make the difference between security in Israel and safety of Israelis in other countries. It’s like comparing apples with puppies. A BIT MORE OF SENSITIVITY PLEASE!

Rick
Guest
Rick

It’s true. I did some digging to confirm this information and it’s not some fake news by wiwibloggs. This report is also on The Times of Israel and the Jerusalem Post. From just a few hours ago. Check their websites.

Una
Guest
Una

Rick, I trust what you say and will not corroborate it. I am not surprised to know such threats exist. actually I believe they are commonplace unfortunately. But I fully trust EBU and the state of Israel’s diligence to ensure safety for their citizens and visitors and Eurovision fans. Actually I believe this will be the best Eurovision in history.

Rick
Guest
Rick

Trust me, I hope nothing happens and that you enjoy it, but my boyfriend and I would rather not put our lives at risk and so we’ve decided we’re skipping it this year. Hopefully we can resell our tickets somewhere but even if we can’t, a few euros lost does not even come close to the value of our lives, and we’re really okay with our decision. I do hope it all goes well and that nothing bad happens, but in this case, we’d rather just watch it on TV. And I, for one, do appreciate wiwibloggs keeping us updated… Read more »

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

and if it was in Paris? London? Berlin?

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Good point.

keith mawson
Guest
keith mawson

As a British born and bred person, I avoid London like the plague, hate the place. They mayor is in a little fairy tale world of his own and needs sacking. He seems to do nothing but blow his own trumpet. Hate when my son goes to London for gigs. The place is a noisy dirty cess pit these days.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

the enemy made a video of that… but Israel said that they are predicting the area to be calm in the coming months since there are intern efforts to make a progress to achieve a total ceasfire
Don’t cancel Rick! it is going to be a very special eurovision,,, the atmosphere outside will be unforgetable!

Rick
Guest
Rick

My boyfriend and I just decided we’re not going anymore. Our lives are more important than a music event, thank you very much. I just cancelled the reservation we had made for our lodging. Does anyone know if we can get a refund on the tickets we bought, or if we can resell them somewhere?

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

i understand you! from far it looks frightening…
but i assure you it isn’t so…
you will enjoy here! welcome!

Una
Guest
Una

Oh phhhhhlease. I wish I could go to Tel Aviv for Eurovision this year. Sadly I can’t, not that I would want to.

Una
Guest
Una

*oopsie, typo. Not that I *wouldn’t want to*. Actually I would love to. 🙂

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

The fact is that terrorism is used to instill terror in people. That’s just an observation.

Alfred
Guest
Alfred

Congratulations on letting terrorism and ignorance win instead of showing some solidarity with the Israelis who put up with this every day of their lives.

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

I understand what you mean but solidarity with Israelis shouldn’t be a one time visit to Israel for Eurovision. And even though this may seem to some, a “victory” of “terrorism and ignorance”, it could also be an opportunity for reflection on how fear affects people individually and a better understanding of the situation in Israel. Blaming someone for protecting their comfort zone is not helpful. I can’t blame Rick and his boyfriend.

La Signora
Guest
La Signora

I would be more scared to be in Paris than Tel Aviv but I respect and understand your choice

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

I read quite recently, say the past two years that thousands of French Jewish people immigrate to Israel because of security reasons. They just don’t feel safe in France. So many anti-semitic incidents. It’s “ironic” and abhorent that such incidents happen in “civilized”, “first world” countries.

Piikatschoo
Guest
Piikatschoo

What is plan B in case Eurovision needs to be canceled in Israel?

RandomEuroFan
Guest
RandomEuroFan

It’s too late now, they can’t just move to a different country and build the stage again since time is wasted and they were already advertising the contest to the max. I hate to say it but they would cancel the whole contest and wait next year to do it again.

Piikatschoo
Guest
Piikatschoo

Is there no plan B though? Or are you merely speculating it would just get canceled completely? Maybe Germany can host it, no? Even if it’s a month or two later. I would hope so, at least. It would suck to go a year without Eurovision.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

it won’t be cancelled.. Don’t worry!

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

I bet that security was taken into consideration from the start. Terrorist action against Israel and its people is predictable so it’s easy to plan a response in terms of prevention and if needed, reaction. Israel is not playing with security. It’s so easy to figure that out by reading even random articles in mainstream media.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

Thank you for explaining that much better than me!

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

My pleasure.

Kris
Guest
Kris

There is always a contingency plan !EBU has a studio ready with LED backing (like Slovenia NF) but then there will be no live audience.

Jill Stephens
Guest
Jill Stephens

I think the “liked” rather than “linked” above (if it is still there) is one of the best Freudian slips I’ve read on your site. Well, today.

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Yes, that typo should be taken care of.

Kobe
Guest
Kobe

If only Cyprus had won…

allexo
Guest
allexo

If Cyprus won it would be worse not because of safety, but the resources needed to make Eurovision happen are quite minimal.

Una
Guest
Una

Cyprus would find resources to organize Eurovision. Let the best country win and let us not worry. Just enjoy!

KESC
Guest
KESC

Lol, as if Israel came up with the best arena. Sorry, but there wouldn’t be that much of difference.

Una
Guest
Una

The show is for 200+ million people that watch the show on TV. It’s a TV show, not a mere live concert. If EBU were satisfied with the venue considering the bidding standards had been met, let us be happy with it and enjoy and appreciate all the effort and resources put in by the organizers and EBU.

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Soldi, soldi.

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

First off, if you bring CASH with you in Israel, exchange it to shekels ONLY in banks or official exchange offices. DON’T TRUST taxi drivers or people who approach you to offer to exchange it for you. DO your research before going there, be prepared and have fun.

Israel is one of the safest countries in the world, always on alert and security is taken VERY seriously. Threats and attacks are awful regardless of Eurovision taking place in Israel or not.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

True! i feel safe here more than in Paris or London because i know that here we are on alert all the time..a month ago a missile was fired to my area destroying houses.. nobody knows about that, of course.. but, thanks to the alert, we ran to the shelter…
anyway, you will feel more than safe here..

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Shalom. I agree with you 100%. Plus, there is so much ignorance and misinformation about Israel, it’s absolutely ridiculous. Israel is probably the only country in the world where people have to have shelters against bombing. And probably with the most outstanding security network.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

yes… shelters serve me since i was a child..
israelis don’t love to count their dead people for propaganda… we want to live, to buildto invent and to help….
our haters uses the medicine we developp

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Again, I agree with you 100%.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

and i agree with everyone that thinks that Romania is the best song this year 🙂

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Toda!! Israel is in my heart and has been for a long time.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

thank you! Romania is also one of my favorite countries.. especially the people!

David
Guest
David

No pint in bringing cash to Israel. Almost everywhere you can pay by international credit card. The only exception is perhaps in some cabs and street vendors.

Una
Guest
Una

To add to what Whisker said: bring some local currency (NIS) with you if you can buy it in your own country to have enough for transportation and other essentials. It’s a life saver in case you can’t find an atm at the airport. Exchange offices in airports don’t always give the best rate for your currency of choice or are not open at all times.

Purple Mask
Guest
Purple Mask

Attacking the ESC with actual weapons is about the stupidest thing anyone can do, because the retaliatory strikes from major world powers could potentially be enormous.

RandomEuroFan
Guest
RandomEuroFan

It would be horrific if some of the artists got injured or worse. Heck if Sergey or the Big 5 artists got hurt, their countries would retaliate with full force.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

that’s a nice joke!

Timos
Guest
Timos

This is nothing compared to israeli bombings at children hospitals… #boycottisrael should have been done from the beginning and we could have gone to cyprus this year!

Nir
Guest
Nir

Such ignorance

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

so pathetic and ignorant! did you read about all the atrocities happened to Israelis by them? they bomb houses, schools, hospitals, they kill people in restaurants, clubs, hotels.. they kill
whole families inside their houses…
why do you defend the bad? or maybe in your news they don’t show these horrors because israeli blood is not important..
show me a country that tell the enemy to leave their houses before they retaliate and show me an enemy that force his people to stay in houses so they will be killed which is good for their propaganda

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Bombing children’s hospitals is bad but so is building under those particular children’s hospitals military purpose shelters, military command centers which are used to attack a sovereign country. So is setting off bombs towards a sovereign country from school compounds.

keith mawson
Guest
keith mawson

enough ffs

John
Guest
John

You joke, but people actually came to the Eurovision subreddit to tell us that anyone willing to go to Eurovision in Israel deserves to be murdered.

Timos
Guest
Timos

Yeah… No

Frisian esc
Guest
Frisian esc

That doesn’t surprise me at all actually. I was at eurovision in concert last week and the protesters there even forced their 4 year olds to join and protest along.

Una
Guest
Una

That’s child abuse.

ConanAnubis
Guest
ConanAnubis

What in the hell… when did that happen? Horrible.

Atari 2600
Guest
Atari 2600

I just feel Israel was a risky place to begin with. Putting the artists and fans at risk, Israel is far from a safe country sadly!

Whisker
Guest
Whisker

Who would put “artists and fans at risk”? Would you please explain that to me, I don’t understand.

Alon I srael
Guest
Alon I srael

although things happened here Israel is still a safe place, not less than Europe..
Security here is high because we deal with that since we were born….

Jannik
Guest
Jannik

Which place is safe? London? Paris? Nice? Toulouse?

Loin dici
Guest

Well, as expected, we have another great news from the war. Woo, excited.

Loin dici
Guest

Edit: Don’t get me wrong, that was sarcastic: I was not delighted by this news. I thought those people could just leave ESC alone but they didn’t.