9 Killed/Hundreds Kidnapped by Israeli commandos who stormed Gaza Flotilla

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Offline spangler

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http://www.prisonplanet.com/two-ships-still-heading-towards-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/three-killed-in-gaza-airstrike-as-mossad-chief-says-israel-risks-becoming-a-burden-on-the-us.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-releases-footage-of-weapons-haul-found-on-gaza-peace-ship-as-activists-give-harrowing-accounts-of-lake-of-blood-raid.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/ahmadinejad-warns-israel-against-second-gaza-war.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/gaza-air-strikes-by-israel-after-rocket-attacks.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/top-5-lies-about-israel%E2%80%99s-assault-on-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/dead-gaza-fighters-bulldozed-into-piles.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israeli-troops-attack-ship-carrying-aid-to-gaza-killing-16.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/gaza-aid-convoy-attack-israel%E2%80%99s-murderous-sea-piracy-a-horrendous-moment-of-truth-for-us-policy.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-rains-fire-on-gaza-with-phosphorus-shells.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/gaza-aid-flotilla-israel-will-once-again-get-away-with-murder.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-using-facebook-as-spying-tool-in-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/truth-and-consequences-in-the-gaza-invasion.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/un-gaza-school-attack-only-hit-civilians.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/why-israel-is-attacking-gaza-now-%E2%80%9Cthey-want-it-to-be-over-before-the-next-administration-comes-in%E2%80%9D.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/is-israel-using-experimental-weapons-in-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/slaughter-in-gaza-another-chapter-in-the-global-elite-master-plan.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-shoots-at-gaza-peace-activists.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/pat-buchanan-israel-turning-gaza-into-a-%E2%80%98concentration-camp%E2%80%99.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/uk-europe-hit-with-riots-over-israels-gaza-campaign.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/chomsky-obama-oked-israels-gaza-war.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/cynthia-mckinney-mourns-the-dead-of-the-freedom-flotilla-to-gaza-people-of-the-u-s-and-the-world-must-end-israeli-impunity-now.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/ron-paul-condemns-israeli-invasion-of-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/world-protests-israeli-massacre-in-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/un-stop-israeli-monstrosity-in-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/day-8-of-gaza-campaign-bush-clears-way-for-israeli-ground-operation-updates-obama.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/gaza-catastrophe-resource-conflict.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/vatican-official-gaza-is-now-a-concentration-camp.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israeli-war-game-eyes-gaza-occupation.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/the-invasion-of-gaza-operation-cast-lead-part-of-a-broader-israeli-military-intelligence-agenda.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israels-fait-accompli-in-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-starts-ground-invasion-of-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/the-boming-of-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-arrests-journalist-critical-of-gaza-war.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israeli-chiefs-say-gaza-onslaught-will-go-on.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/palestinians_arrest_al_qaeda_poseurs.htm
http://www.prisonplanet.com/an-experiment-in-provocation-stealing-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/crude-oil-rises-after-israeli-attacks-on-gaza-roil-middle-east.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/lab-tests-verify-white-phosphorus-in-gaza-soil.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/gaza-airstrikes-did-israel-target-school-children.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/did-israel-test-new-weapons-in-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-mulls-truce-proposals-as-jets-pound-gaza.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/us-support-of-israeli-war-against-gaza-may-trigger-depression-2.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/how-israel-tricked-hamas-before-launching-gaza-strikes.html
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israel-using-%E2%80%9Cdime%E2%80%9D-weapons-on-civilian-population-in-gaza.html

There are thousands of other such articles, this is only one of 10 websites that AJ funds. And on this forum (which AJ also funds), has an entire room dedicated to exposing gaza war crimes and crimes against humanity: http://forum.prisonplanet.com/index.php?board=370.0


Thanks S for assembling those links. I agree. He does give it fair coverage on his websites. I was talking about his radio show.

Offline larsonstdoc

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  Rivero just unloaded a bombshell--A member of the ISRAELI PARLIAMENT SAID THAT THE IDF FIRED ON THE SHIP 5 MINUTES BEFORE THE COMMANDOES CAME ABOARD THE SHIP.
  I CAN'R REMEMBER WHERE THE ISRAELI PARLAIAMENT MEMBER WAS.

  THIS ARTICLE IS AT RIVERO'S WEBSITE.

Offline Dig

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Thanks S for assembling those links. I agree. He does give it fair coverage on his websites. I was talking about his radio show.

ya better thank me! that cutting and pasting was exhausting, I need to put my finger on ice ;)

as far as the radio show, i do not think i can change your mind and i am not attempting to, but, I would just like to say the following:
cointelpro often takes his stuff out of context and then creates obvious BS youtube clips that demonize the hell out of him. if you go back and listen to entire shows, the few seconds of out of context rhetoric is hardly one sided. at least that is what i have found. also, aj is very quick to expose the many tentacles of the NWO octopus and never singles out only one group (although he does expose all the groups whether they be zionists, wahabbiists, eurocrats, communist chinese, mexican oligarchs, etc.)
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline tritonman

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 Rivero just unloaded a bombshell--A member of the ISRAELI PARLIAMENT SAID THAT THE IDF FIRED ON THE SHIP 5 MINUTES BEFORE THE COMMANDOES CAME ABOARD THE SHIP.
  I CAN'R REMEMBER WHERE THE ISRAELI PARLAIAMENT MEMBER WAS.

  THIS ARTICLE IS AT RIVERO'S WEBSITE.
We need a link for this info as of now. ASAP

Offline SUPREMEMASTER

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(Off-Topic post to answer Off-Topic question...)
« Reply #564 on: June 01, 2010, 02:21:26 pm »
There are thousands of other such articles, this is only one of 10 websites that AJ funds. And on this forum (which AJ also funds), has an entire room dedicated to exposing gaza war crimes and crimes against humanity: http://forum.prisonplanet.com/index.php?board=370.0
S...What are the 10 different websites of AJ?

Is that a trick-question or something?

TruthNews.US

INFOWARS.COM

INFOWARS.NET

PrisonPlanet.com


PrisonPlanet.TV

PropagandaMatrix.com

JonesReport.com

THE INFOWARRIOR with Jason Bermas

DefendRosie.com

ArnoldExposed.com


[Is that accurate?]
Automatic User Post Signature:
The message has to be put out in the right way.
Website Still Needs to be updated |ActivismOverDrive.comze.net|

Offline larsonstdoc

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We need a link for this info as of now. ASAP

http://www.commondreams.org/headline/2010/06/01-3

Israelis Opened Fire Before Boarding Gaza Flotilla, say Released Activists
First eyewitness accounts of raid contradict version put out by Israeli officials
by Dorian Jones in Istanbul and Helena Smith
Survivors of the Israeli assault on a flotilla carrying relief supplies to Gaza returned to Greece and Turkey today, giving the first eyewitness accounts of the raid in which at least 10 people died.

Demonstrators wave the flags of Turkey and Palestine in a protest against Israel in Istanbul yesterday. The banners read 'Open sea pirate Israel' and 'Enough is enough'. (Photograph: Murad Sezer/Reuters)Arriving at Istanbul's Ataturk airport with her one-year-old baby, Turkish activist Nilufer Cetin said Israeli troops opened fire before boarding the Turkish-flagged ferry Mavi Marmara, which was the scene of the worst clashes and all the fatalities. Israeli officials have said that the use of armed force began when its boarding party was attacked.

"It was extremely bad and very tough clashes took place. The Mavi Marmara is filled with blood," said Cetin, whose husband is the Mavi Marmara's chief engineer.

She told reporters that she and her child hid in the bathroom of their cabin during the confrontation. "The operation started immediately with firing. First it was warning shots, but when the Mavi Marmara wouldn't stop these warnings turned into an attack," she said.

"There were sound and smoke bombs and later they used gas bombs. Following the bombings they started to come on board from helicopters."

Cetin is among a handful of Turkish activists to be released; more than 300 remain in Israeli custody. She said she agreed to extradition from Israel after she was warned that conditions in jail would be too harsh for her child.

"I am one of the first passengers to be sent home, just because I have baby. When we arrived at the Israeli port of Ashdod we were met by the Israeli interior and foreign ministry officials and police; there were no soldiers. They asked me only a few questions. But they took everything – cameras, laptops, cellphones, personal belongings including our clothes," she said.

Kutlu Tiryaki was a captain of another vessel in the flotilla. "We continuously told them we did not have weapons, we came here to bring humanitarian help and not to fight," he said.

"The attack on the Mavi Marmara came in an instant: they attacked it with 12 or 13 attack boats and also with commandos from helicopters. We heard the gunshots over our portable radio handsets, which we used to communicate with the Mavi Marmara, because our ship communication system was disrupted. There were three or four helicopters also used in the attack. We were told by Mavi Marmara their crew and civilians were being shot at and windows and doors were being broken by Israelis."

Six Greek activists who returned to Athens accused Israeli commandos of using electric shocks during the raid.

Dimitris Gielalis, who had been aboard the Sfendoni, told reporters: "Suddenly from everywhere we saw inflatables coming at us, and within seconds fully equipped commandos came up on the boat. They came up and used plastic bullets, we had beatings, we had electric shocks, any method we can think of, they used."

Michalis Grigoropoulos, who was at the wheel of the Free Mediterranean, said: "We were in international waters. The Israelis acted like pirates, completely out of the normal way that they conduct nautical exercises, and seized our ship. They took us hostage, pointing guns at our heads; they descended from helicopters and fired tear gas and bullets. There was absolutely nothing we could do … Those who tried to resist forming a human ring on the bridge were given electric shocks."

Grigoropoulos, who insisted the ship was full of humanitarian aid bound for Gaza "and nothing more", said that, once detained, the human rights activists were not allowed to contact a lawyer or the Greek embassy in Tel Aviv. "They didn't let us go to the toilet, eat or drink water and throughout they videoed us. They confiscated everything, mobile phones, laptops, cameras and personal effects. They only allowed us to keep our papers."

Turkey said it was sending three ambulance planes to Israel to pick up 20 more Turkish activists injured in the operation.

Three Turkish Airlines planes were on standby, waiting to fly back other activists, the prime minister's office said.


Offline rio

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I haven't listened to the show, but please don't tell me that AJ is trying to put a pro-Zionist disinformation spin this.

Offline Okinawa

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Global Condemnation of Israeli Armed Attack on Gaza-Bound Freedom Flotilla: At Least 10 Dead, Hundreds Remain in Detention
http://www.democracynow.org/2010/6/1/global_condemnation_of_israeli_armed_attack

It was early Monday morning as Israeli soldiers stormed the Gaza-bound international aid convoy called the Freedom Flotilla in international waters about forty miles off the coast of Gaza. The six ships had nearly 700 international activists on board and 10,000 tons of humanitarian aid. They were aiming to break the three-year-long siege of the Gaza Strip. Israeli commandos landed on the lead ship in the convoy, the Turkish Mavi Marmara, which had about 600 activists on board. At least ten and as many as nineteen civilians on board the ship have been reported to have died in the attack. Israeli troops proceeded to seize the Mavi Marmara and the five other ships and take them to the port of Ashdod. Hundreds of activists are being detained in an Israeli prison, and nearly fifty others have been deported. The United Nations Security Council has condemned the attack and called for the immediate release of the ships and the civilians held by Israel and called for an impartial investigation. All the permanent members of the Security Council except for the United States explicitly called for Israel’s three-year blockade of the Gaza Strip to be lifted. Turkey has compared Israel’s actions to state terrorism. We speak to Adam Shapiro, Amira Hass, Ali Abunimah and Richard Falk.

Guests:
Adam Shapiro, co-founder of the International Solidarity Movement and a board member of the Free Gaza Movement.
Ali Abunimah, co-founder of The Electronic Intifada and author of One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse.
Richard Falk, United Nations special rapporteur on human rights in the Palestinian territories.
Amira Hass, columnist with Israel’s Ha’aretz newspaper and the only Israeli journalist to have spent several years living in and reporting from Gaza and the West Bank.


AMY GOODMAN: We’ve been here in Louisiana going through southern Louisiana and the Mississippi Delta since last Friday, and our intention today was to bring you a special for the hour, but because of events in the Middle East, we are switching gears. And we’ll bring you many of the voices, we’ll introduce you to many of the people we met, in the coming days. Right now we turn, though, to the Middle East. Anjali?

ANJALI KAMAT: That’s right, Amy. We turn now to the Middle East. It was early Monday morning as Israeli soldiers stormed the Gaza-bound international aid convoy called the Freedom Flotilla in international waters about forty miles off the coast of Gaza. The six ships had nearly 700 international activists on board and 10,000 tons of humanitarian aid. They were aiming to break the three-year-long siege of the Gaza Strip.

Israeli commandos landed on the lead ship in the convoy, the Turkish Mavi Marmara, which had about 600 activists on board. These are excerpts from the raw video captured by an Al Jazeera producer on the ship minutes before the ship lost satellite contact with the world. It features two of the journalists on board.

      HASSAN GHANI: This is the MV Marmara. This is Hassan Ghani reporting for Press TV. We have had several injuries here. One is critical. He has been injured in the head. We think he may die if he does not receive medical treatment immediately. Another person being taken past in front of me right now has been seriously injured. We are being hit by tear gas, stun grenades. We have navy ships on either side and helicopters overhead. We are being attacked from every single side. This is in international waters, not Israeli waters, not in the sixty-eight-mile exclusion zone. We are being attacked in international waters, completely illegally.

      JAMAL ELSHAYYAL: To confirm and update you, the Israeli navy has now boarded the Mavi Marmara, where 600 civilians have been trying to deliver aid to Gaza. Live munition has been fired. There are reports that one person has been killed. Several, I have seen with my eyes, have been injured. We’ve seen them. Doctors trying to work to heal the injured. The organizers onboard the Mavi Marmara, after two people have been confirmed killed by the Israeli army, have now asked all the passengers to go inside. They’ve raised the white flag, this after Israeli commandos descended upon the ship in international water from a helicopter, as well as surrounded it by vessels from all sides. Tens of people, civilians, have been injured. There are still sounds of live fire, despite the white flag being raised. Tens of people have been injured, two people have been killed, onboard the ship which holds 600 activists, parliamentarians, women, children and the elderly, all of whom are civilians. Organizers have asked everyone to go inside, so this is where we shall head. Jamal Elshayyal, Al Jazeera, onboard the Mavi Marmara in the international waters of the Mediterranean Sea.


ANJALI KAMAT: That was the last bits of video from an Al Jazeera producer onboard the Mavi Marmara before losing satellite contact with the world early Monday morning. At least ten and as many, according to some reports, as nineteen civilians onboard the ship have been reported to have died in the attack. There has been a near-complete blackout of information.

Israeli troops proceeded to seize the Mavi Marmara and the five other ships and take them to the port of Ashdod. Hundreds of activists are being detained in an Israeli prison, and nearly fifty others have been deported. Israel has still not released the names of the dead, the injured, and the detained international civilians.

Three Turkish activists who were deported back to Istanbul late Monday night spoke to journalists. This is Mutlu Tiryaki described the ordeal onboard the Mavi Marmara.

      MUTLU TIRYAKI: [translated] When we stepped on the board, they emerged from helicopters and military boats and attacked us. They approached our vessel with military ships after issuing a military warning. We told them we were unarmed. Our sole weapon was water.


ANJALI KAMAT: The United Nations Security Council has condemned the attack and called for the immediate release of the ships and the civilians held by Israel and also called for an impartial investigation. All of the permanent member of the Security Council except for the United States explicitly called for Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip to be lifted.

Turkey has compared Israel’s actions to state terrorism. At the emergency Security Council meeting Monday, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu described the incident as murder and piracy.

      AHMET DAVUTOGLU: This action was uncalled for. Israeli actions constitute a grave breach of international law. In simplest terms, this is tantamount to banditry and piracy. It is murder conducted by a state. It has no excuses, no justification whatsoever. A nation state that follows this path has lost its legitimacy as a respectful member of the international community.


AMY GOODMAN: But Israel insists that its troops had acted in self-defense after being attacked by those onboard. Israel’s deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, Daniel Carmon, said the civilians on the ship were not peace activists.

      DANIEL CARMON: What kind of peace activists use knives, clubs, fire from weapons stolen from soldiers and other weapons to attack soldiers who boarded the ship in accordance with international law? What kind of humanitarian activists, some with known terrorist history, embrace Hamas, a terrorist organization that openly shuns a two-state solution and calls for Israel’s destruction, defying conditions set by the international community and the Quartet? The answer is clear: there are not peace activists.


AMY GOODMAN: Although governments across the world have strongly condemned Israel’s attack, the United States says it’s still gathering the facts and regrets the loss of life. This is the US deputy permanent representative to the United Nations, Alejandro Wolff.

      ALEJANDRO WOLFF: We are working to ascertain the facts. We expect a credible and transparent investigation and strongly urge the Israeli government to investigate the incident fully. As I stated in the council chamber in December 2008, when we were confronted with a similar situation, mechanisms exist for the transfer of humanitarian assistance to Gaza by member states and groups that want to do so. These non-provocative and non-confrontational mechanisms should be the ones used for the benefit of all those in Gaza.


AMY GOODMAN: Meanwhile, thousands of people in cities across the world, from Turkey to Europe to the United States to Pakistan, have come out on the streets to protest the bloody attack on the humanitarian aid convoy.

      PROTESTER: [translated] This is totally inhumane. None can defend this inhumane violence.

      PROTESTERS: Free, free Gaza! Free, free Gaza! Stop Israeli war crimes!

      PROTESTER: I’m here today because I’m an American Jew and I totally am opposed to what Israel is doing. Killing those people on the boat who were trying to bring material aid to a starving, imprisoned people is an insane crime, and it doesn’t represent the values of Jews and all people around the world.

      PROTESTER: [translated] The truth is that Israel is not the only one responsible. All the official Arab regimes are responsible for this crime. Obama is responsible. The international community is responsible. The International Criminal Court, they became responsible when they remained silent about the crimes being committed against the people of Gaza.

      PROTESTER: Continuously breaking international law, and it has never lived up to any United Nation resolution. And we have seen a lot of times that both the European Union and the United States have told Israel that they went too far.

      PROTESTER: [translated] It depends on people. We have to force our governments to react. We have to force Europe to react, because this is a humiliation to Europe. A cocky mobster who dares to do what Israel has done in the Mediterranean, in international waters—what kind of security do we have in the Mediterranean? That’s the question we should ask ourselves.

      PROTESTER: I know the people onboard. They are people from all walks of life. There are teachers. There are professors. There are journalists. There are politicians. There are cleaners. These are people like you and me who believe in taking aid to poor people. And these are the people that are being gunned down in cold blood by Israel today.


AMY GOODMAN: Voices of shock and outrage from around the world over the Israeli commando attack on the Gaza peace flotilla. This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, the War and Peace Report. When we come back, we’ll be joined by a number of guests. Stay with us.

[break]

AMY GOODMAN: We’re in New Orleans, Louisiana, here to cover BP and the geyser that continues to gush from the bottom of the sea. But because of events in the Middle East, we have switched gears today to cover what happened, the Israeli commando attack on the Free Gaza Freedom Flotilla.

We’re joined by a number of guests, but we’re going to begin in New York with Adam Shapiro. He’s the co-founder of the International Solidarity Movement and a board member of the Free Gaza Movement, one of the groups that coordinated the Freedom Flotilla. His wife Huwaida Arraf, the chair of the Free Gaza Movement, was on the flotilla.

Adam, can you explain to us what you understand happened on—well, it was early Sunday morning in the—what happened to the flotilla?

ADAM SHAPIRO: The boats were making their way, the six ships, in international waters, far in international waters. They were still at least fifty miles offshore, and so well off the coasts of Israel and Gaza. And as they were making their way, Israeli warships surrounded the flotilla, all the ships, and the first ship to come under attack by helicopter, with commandos coming down from helicopter, as we’ve seen on the media, on the footage, was this big Turkish ship, the Mavi Marmara. And soldiers, as they came down, started opening fire immediately, as was reported by the Al Jazeera correspondence on live stream that we have. And the soldiers injured and eventually killed at least one person, before other passengers decided at that point to try to act in self-defense and to try to stop soldiers, more soldiers, from coming onto the ship.

What needs to be acknowledged here is that Israel acted violently by attacking our ships, to begin with. And under international law, under the law of the seas, our people, as the people on that ship coming under such an attack, an illegal attack on the high seas, do have a right to defend themselves. Now, we don’t necessarily encourage people to take up any kind of weapons against the Israelis, and certainly our activists train in nonviolence, but given the kind of scenario that was unfolding on that boat, I certainly do understand the desire of people to try to protect themselves and try to protect others who were already injured.

The other ships, including the one that my wife Huwaida was on, also came under attack. We don’t know, because we didn’t have satellite feeds on those ships, the kinds of attacks that they suffered. And we still don’t know, because all of the detainees are being kept from any kind of communication with media, with their families, even up until now with their lawyers and with their embassies.

ANJALI KAMAT: Adam Shapiro, do you know how many people died? And do you know how many people are being detained by Israel?

ADAM SHAPIRO: Until now, we still don’t know the exact number of dead. Israel refuses to release the names of the people that it killed, despite numerous requests from various embassies, some governments and, of course, the media. And the exact number of dead, the exact number of injured, and the exact number of who are in detention, we do not know, because, again, we are completely—this is becoming a major coverup by Israel to keep all information blocked, blanketed from getting out.

ANJALI KAMAT: Have you heard from your wife, Huwaida Arraf?

ADAM SHAPIRO: Literally just now, as I came on this program, I received confirmation that she has been released. She is without phones and without any money. They took all of her stuff from her. But she’s been released from prison and should be on her way to Jerusalem hopefully right now.

AMY GOODMAN: I’d like to go to Israel and the West Bank. I want to see right now if Amira Hass is on the line. She is the reporter for Ha’aretz.

Amira, we wanted to get the response to what has taken place in Israel and the Occupied Territories and what you understand, because this is the big issue right now, that the Israeli government has spoken out about what has happened, but very few people understand actually, outside of what the Israeli government has said, what took place on these ships. Certainly in the United States, the news media is quoting the Israeli government, the prime minister, various military spokespeople. But since hundreds of people have been detained, and we don’t know the names of the dead or the injured, we are not hearing any other part of the story.

AMIRA HASS: Exactly, Amy. The details cannot be told yet, because we don’t—other than the soldiers and the few people who returned to their homes, in Turkey mostly or in Greece, we don’t have details yet, because we depend only on the official versions of the Israel—of the Israeli army and the Israeli government. I’m here in Ramallah, and so I don’t know—I only follow on the news and what my friends tell me in Israel.

On the one hand, there have been quite a few demonstrations, as I understand, against the attack and against the decision to stop the flotilla. There is a strike in Palestinian communities in Israel proper. There is a strike in Gaza, I think. But also in the West Bank, the police cleared a strike and three days of mourning. In the West Bank, I’ve seen that the Palestinian police is trying very hard to prevent people from clashing with the Israeli army, feeling more—feeling deterioration. So what I’ve noticed is there is—there are many, many security vehicles of the Palestinian Authority near junctions, near areas where the Israeli army is located. They opened, as I read—I haven’t seen it—they opened wake houses in several municipalities all over the West Bank. But people—there were a few demonstrations yesterday in the West Bank, demanding actually the Palestinian Authority to stop all negotiations with Israel and to stop the military coordination with Israel, which is a very—it’s a sore wound in Palestinian life, this military security coordination. So far, as I understand, the PA of course has condemned, but has not—is not reacting to this demand, to the public demand. We don’t know what will happen next.

But I think that beyond those details, what’s becoming clearer and clearer—and I think that’s also to many Israelis—is that who is really under blockade is not Gaza and not the Palestinians, but Israel, under a self-imposed blockade, because they think they could continue to violate our—not only international law or concepts, but also common sense. It’s all reacting against the common sense of every normal person in this world, you know, like if you think about Noam Chomsky not allowed to enter the country. So this is the main thing we can see. From the very beginning, the decision to not allow this ship from entering Gaza, from reaching Gaza, then this attack on civilian ships and then expecting the people will accept this attack, as Adam said, in international water. So it’s a complete act of piracy. And then these soldiers expect to be received as if they were, I don’t know, guests. So this shows about a certain—and unfortunately, the Israeli society is behind the government in that sense, still behind the government. So it is under blockade. The Israeli society is under self-imposed siege.

ANJALI KAMAT: Amira Hass, you were supposed to be on one of the boats in the flotilla?

AMIRA HASS: Yes, I registered, as I—as you know, we are not—Israeli journalists are not allowed to enter Gaza through Erez, and I did enter—over the past year and a half, I did enter three times, so-called illegally. And the first time was with a boat. And I registered to enter, and I was supposed to be on the boat with Dror Feiler, the Israeli Swedish activist and musician. But unfortunately, because they kept postponing the date, I had something I could not cancel in Jerusalem at the end of last week, so, unfortunately, I did not join it. Or fortunately.

AMY GOODMAN: Amira Hass, you talked about the protests in the Palestinian territories. What about in the Israeli Jewish community? What has been the response? And what are you seeing on Israeli television? What kind of video? What is the story, the narrative, you’re getting?

AMIRA HASS: There were. Israeli activists has been—has had several demonstrations since yesterday, as I could tell by emails and by what friends told me, and Palestinians in Israel, as well, of course. There are all sorts of condemnations by Israeli organizations and organizations for human rights organizations. So there is an activity, as an—adding to the quite rejectivity of Israeli Jews against the occupation, which we see permanently. But it’s an activity of a minority. There are, of course, publicists and some public personalities who are alarmed by Israeli blindness, I think, as I can tell by the reports.

Now, the Israeli version, as is seen and is almost the only version that is shown to the Israeli public, is that once they went down the ropes, the soldiers, they were immediately attacked by some people, who had with them knives and sticks or whatever, and were beating them. The official—the video, the photos. And you can hear also on the voice—you can hear that the soldiers are surprised or shocked. And so are their officers, their commanders, which watch everything through the—whatever equipment they have. I tend to believe that they were indeed surprised. They did not expect resistance. They did not expect to be challenged. I cannot tell if it was after—by what we are shown, if it was after some shots were—that they shot and killed some people, or was it simultaneously when they slid down from the helicopters. But this is what is seen on the Israeli—on Israeli TV. And this is also what—I read some testimonies of soldiers, and this is also what soldiers tell, told from a military correspondent of ours who of course got the permission to speak to them. We don’t get any detailed account of anyone of those who were on the ship.

ANJALI KAMAT: I want to bring Ali Abuninah, the co-founder of the Electronic Intifada and author of One Country: A Bold Proposal to End the Israeli-Palestinian Impasse, into the discussion. He’s joining us from Chicago.

Ali, can you talk about the reaction from the United States from the Obama administration and also at the Security Council?

ALI ABUNIMAH: Yes. Good morning.

Among the more than 700 people on the ship from about thirty-two countries are thirteen United States citizens, including a former ambassador, Ed Peck, who has been released and is reported to be on his way back to the United States. But as in the previous Israeli acts of piracy and war against ships heading to Gaza—you remember when Cynthia McKinney was kidnapped and jailed in Israel for trying to reach Gaza—once again, the United States government is saying and doing nothing publicly that suggests any great concern for its citizens who have been kidnapped by Israel.

And the statements from the Obama administration, particularly that by the US representative at the United Nations, Alejandro Wolff, were really quite shocking and astonishing. You played a clip during the news, where he suggests really that the flotilla were themselves to blame, talking about using non-confrontational and non-provocational methods rather than going by ship—in other words, suggesting—agreeing with the outrageous Israeli claims that trying to reach Gaza with humanitarian aid is somehow a provocation or a confrontation. And Ambassador Wolff also reaffirmed Israel’s so-called right to self-defense in this context, which suggests that the United States, unless it makes clear otherwise, believes that attacking a civilian ship on the high seas and massacring an unknown number of its passengers is somehow self-defense.

I think we also have to keep our eye on the context here, Anjali. Just a week or so ago, the United States Congress voted by 410-to-four—I’ll repeat that, 410-to-four—to a request from the Obama administration for additional military aid, another $205 million. This was clearly a political move by the Obama administration to fund the rather useless Iron Dome rocket defense as a way to appease Israel politically. But the message Israel got from this, as it has gotten from US and international complicity and complacency, the failure to hold Israel accountable for the war crimes documented in the Goldstone report; the failure to hold Israel accountable for the act of international terrorism and murder in a hotel room in Dubai; the failure to hold Israel accountable for four years of murderous siege on Gaza that has killed, by itself, 400 Palestinians for lack of access to medical aid and other needed supplies. The failure to hold Israel accountable in all these ways has sent Israel the message: do what you like, get away with whatever you want to, until people hold Israel accountable.

And so, what the Freedom Flotilla was, was it was a peaceful, unarmed people’s navy, assembled to fill the void and the vacuum where the Obama administration should be, where the UN Security Council should be, where the Arab governments should be, where the European Union should be. And it is a shocking outrage and a crime that will live in infamy, along with the bombing of the King David Hotel, along with the attack on the USS Liberty, along with so many other appalling crimes, that international humanitarian workers bringing aid were attacked on the high seas.

I spoke to you a few months ago when I was in Cairo with the Gaza Freedom March. By now, people have tried to reach Gaza to break the siege by land. They have tried by sea. And they have lost their lives. They have given their lives in the cause of breaking this siege on Gaza. And we have to ask, we have to ask, for what crime are 1.5 million people in Gaza being held prisoner? There is a museum in Berlin, which I visited as a schoolboy, to those who were killed trying to cross, those who were machine-gunned trying to cross over the Berlin Wall. Well, an unknown number of people, because Israel won’t tell us, were machine-gunned for trying to break this blockade. When will there be accountability? And when will the Obama administration stop this outrageous complicity, this enabling, this acting as an accomplice with these crimes against people in Palestine and now against Americans, Turks, Greeks, Jordanians, Palestinians, Lebanese, Swedes, French people, German people, members of Parliament, doctors, retired people, trying to bring medicine to people in Gaza? That our government has not stood up and condemned this in the clearest possible terms is a sign that something is sick in the United States’ system when it comes to speaking about and dealing with Israel. There is a sickness that has to be addressed.

AMY GOODMAN: Ali Abunimah is speaking to us from Chicago. He’s the founder of the Electronic Intifada. Adam Shapiro in the studio with—in New York at Democracy Now!. Amira Hass is with us from Ramallah in the West Bank. When we come back from break, we’re going to Richard Falk, the UN special rapporteur for human rights in the Palestinian territories, to talk about international law.

I’m Amy Goodman with Anjali Kamat, and we’re broadcasting from New Orleans, from New Orleans, Louisiana, where the BP oil catastrophe continues to unfold. Stay with us.

[break]

AMY GOODMAN: This is Democracy Now!, democracynow.org, the War and Peace Report. I’m Amy Goodman with Anjali Kamat. We’re in New Orleans; our guests are around the world. We’re going to turn right now to Richard Falk, the UN special rapporteur for human rights in the Palestinian territories.

This issue of international law, of international waters, Richard Falk, talk about your reaction to what took place. I had originally said on Sunday morning; in fact, it was 4:00 Monday morning on the waters, on the high seas, when the Israeli commandos raided the Gaza Freedom Flotilla.

RICHARD FALK: Good morning, Amy. This was a shocking incident that involved, as your other guests have said, a complete disregard of international law, in several respects. It was an act of naked aggression. It was done on the high seas. It was done in defiance of elementary humanitarian standards. It was known that this flotilla had no weapons. It was not a security issue by the remotest stretch of the imagination. If there was a right of self-defense, it belonged to the people onboard these ships. Israel, as the aggressing state and political actor, had no claim whatsoever of self-defense. It’s an absurdity. And one can only imagine if another country that the United States didn’t like had engaged in this kind of behavior, we would have been denouncing them or, worse, using force. One can only imagine what would happen if Iran had done something of this comparably outrageous character and sought to provide some kind of legal cover for it, while silencing those that actually experienced the incident.

So I feel that we’ve almost never seen such a direct confrontation with the most elementary principles of international law. And it is a disgrace that our government has decided to stand apart from all other countries in the world, including our normal European friends, and withheld a denunciation and a call for lifting the blockade, because one needs to appreciate that underneath this criminal act, which amounts to a crime against humanity, underneath this has been the almost three years of criminal blockade of the people of Gaza. The blockade is a direct violation of Article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention that prohibits collective punishment. And this is one of the first examples where a civilian population has been locked inside a zone that has been subjected to this kind of mental and physical threat to subsistence and survival.

ANJALI KAMAT: Richard Falk, given the international of outcry over this incident, do you think there will be enough pressure to implement the recommendations of the Goldstone report to finally lift the siege on Gaza?

RICHARD FALK: It is hard to tell at this point. What is clear is that the United States continues in its role as the protector of Israeli impunity in circumstances that are so extreme that it will build additional anti-US attitudes throughout the world, not only in the Islamic world. And it is probably a matter that will be determined in large part by how sustained the civil society reaction to these events are. I’ve said for some time that the best hope for the Palestinians is not at a governmental level or through reliance on the United Nations, but rather through the boycott, divestment and sanctions campaign, which has increasingly come to resemble the anti-apartheid campaign that was so successful in delegitimizing the racist regime in South Africa. I think this legitimacy war is being waged now as the primary arena of struggle. And it has shown the immoral failure of established governments to do what should have been done years ago and insisted that this blockade be lifted and used nonviolent coercion by way of sanctions in the event that Israel continued to refuse to end the blockade. It is a crime that has no borders at this point. And it’s only the peoples of the world, really, that represent the conscience of humanity in a circumstance of this kind.

AMY GOODMAN: We’re talking to Richard Falk, UN special rapporteur for human rights in the Palestinian territories and the Occupied Territories. The countries that have called in the Israeli ambassador for an explanation are Austria, Belgium, Brazil, Cyprus, Denmark, Egypt, Finland, France, Greece, Ireland, Jordan, New Zealand, among others.

Ali Abunimah, can you talk about the videotape? And again, we have to stress, in the brief coverage that we see in US media right now, because we do not even know the names of the dead or the injured, not to mention hundreds of people who are now in jail in Israel, we’re only getting one side here. But the videotape that the Israeli government is showing of what happened on the lead ship, on the Turkish ship, Ali?

ALI ABUNIMAH: Yes. I mean, what we have to do is put all this in the context of Israel’s propaganda strategy. What they’ve done is imposed a total news block-out—blackout. Hundreds of people are detained. They’ve had no access to lawyers, certainly no access to media. It was reported there was one Al Jazeera cameraman, of the six Al Jazeera staff who were kidnapped with the ships, who was released. And what he said is that all the passengers were allowed to leave the ships only with their passports, with no other personal belongings. He was personally attacked by Israeli soldiers while he was filming, and his camera smashed. In any case, no journalists were allowed to leave the ships with any film or any recordings whatsoever. We don’t know the names of the dead. The families of all those passengers are anxiously awaiting news of their loved ones. Why is this? So that the Israeli narrative can get a long head start. This is all about the Israeli propaganda strategy to give the Israeli propagandists, like Mark Regev, a free run. They’ve had more than twenty-four hours. And, Amy, it’s working in the mainstream media, because they’re only reporting, you know, the atrocious reporting on National Public Radio and on the BBC, which is taking mostly the Israeli version.

Even the videos the Israelis received, what they do confirm to us is that Israel attacked a civilian ship with attack helicopters, speedboats and commandos. Now, they show people fending off the soldiers. I mean, in this country, in the United States, people lionize the passengers on Flight 93 who tried to fight off the hijackers to no avail. So there was a natural reaction there. What we don’t know is when that happened. The Al Jazeera footage, which came out before the feed was cut by Israel, showed people—or there was evidence of people being shot at and killed as soon as the Israelis attacked. Hanin Zoabi, the member of Parliament in the Knesset, the Palestinian who was released and gave a press conference today, talked about the sudden attack with sound bombs, tear gas, explosions. The same—the Al Jazeera journalist who was released said the same thing. Because the Israelis are obscuring or removing the time stamps from the videos they are releasing, we have no idea when those videos were taken, and they’re showing very short clips. But what is not in doubt and what nobody disputes, not even the Israelis, is that an Israeli military force carried out an unprovoked attack on the high seas against a civilian vessel, and people have been killed, people who were on a humanitarian mission. And there is no justification for that.

AMY GOODMAN: Adam Shapiro, we want to bring you in before the end.

ADAM SHAPIRO: Yes.

AMY GOODMAN: Adam, we want to bring you in before the end, because in addition to what happened on the high seas, you have the West Bank attack on a young Cooper Union art student, a student in New York who was in the West Bank. Can you explain who she is and what happened?

ADAM SHAPIRO: As you said, Emily [Henochowicz] is a twenty-one-year-old Cooper Union art student who was there in the West Bank joining the International Solidarity Movement as an activist protesting what’s going on in the West bank. I mean, obviously, Gaza is very bad, but there continues to be land confiscation, home demolitions, the building of the wall in the West Bank. Emily was attending a protest at Qalandia checkpoint, demonstrating against what happened to our flotilla. The Israelis opened a barrage of tear-gas canisters, fired at very close range, at her specifically. Eyewitness accounts talk about two tear-gas canisters being shot right at her feet and then a third being shot at her head, hitting her in the left eye, I believe. And we have received word from the doctors that she has lost her left eye.

This is yet another attack on an unarmed international civilian coming to join the Palestinians in protest, coming to stand up for human rights. There is a war. There is a war now. Israel has launched this war. It launched it earlier with attacks on Rachel Corrie, on Tom Hurndall and other internationals, but this is now an open war Israel has launched on foreigners. There is no citizen. There should be travel warnings issued now to all foreigners trying to enter Israel or the Occupied Territories. You are targeted by Israel.

AMY GOODMAN: Well, I want to thank you all for being with us. I want to thank Adam Shapiro in New York; also Amira Hass of Ha’aretz, speaking to us from Ramallah; Ali Abunimah in Chicago; Richard Falk, speaking to us, UN special rapporteur on the Palestinian territories. Two more boats are headed to Gaza to deliver humanitarian aid. Mairead Maguire is on one of them, among many. She is the Nobel Peace Prize winner.
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Offline Okinawa

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At Least 10 Activists Killed in Israeli Attack on Gaza-Bound Aid Ship
http://www.democracynow.org/2010/6/1/headlines#1

At least ten peace activists have been killed in an Israeli attack on a humanitarian aid ship making its away to the Gaza Strip in international waters. The Mavi Marmara was part of a flotilla organized by the Free Gaza Movement carrying nearly 700 international activists and over 10,000 tons of aid. On Monday, Israeli forces stormed the ship nearly forty miles off the Gaza coast. In the Occupied Territories, Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas condemned the attack as a "massacre."

    Palestinian President Mahmoud Abbas: "There is no doubt that Israel had planned for this attack and it meant to take part in this in order to put down the world and the people from supporting the Palestinian people. This is why it carried out this sinful attack in this sinful massacre against those innocent."

Hundreds of activists are being detained in an Israeli prison, and nearly fifty others have been deported. Israel has still not released the names of the dead, injured, and detained international civilians.

UN Security Council Calls for Probe of Attack
The United Nations Security Council has condemned actions that "led" to the deaths. In a statement approved after hours of deliberation, the Council also demanded the immediate release of the ships and the civilians held by Israel and called for an impartial investigation. All the permanent member of the Security Council except for the United States explicitly called for Israel’s three-year blockade of the Gaza Strip to be lifted. Thousands of people in cities across the world, from Turkey to Europe to the United States to Pakistan, have come out on the streets to protest the bloody attack on the humanitarian aid convoy. In Israel, the Israeli peace activist Jeff Halper denounced the attack on the ship.

    Jeff Halper: "These people died last night, and dozens were wounded. And this whole mission set out because governments did not do their job. It’s the governments’ responsibility of the world and the UN to end this siege, which is illegal, which is inhumane, which is immoral. And if the governments don’t do their work, people have to get up. I didn’t want to get on a boat and go through the Israeli Navy and get arrested. These people didn’t want to die."

NPT Signatories Call on Israel to Open Nuclear Sites
The Israeli attack came two days after signatories to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty approved a resolution backing a nuclear-free Middle East and calling on Israel to open its nuclear sites to international inspection. The measure was approved by consensus by all 189 NPT signatories, including the United States. Egypt’s ambassador to the UN, Maged Abdelaziz, hailed it as a major step forward.

    Maged Abdelaziz: "The road ahead is not easy, but it is the only way forward. Today’s reaffirmation by the conference of the importance of Israel’s accession to the treaty and the placement of all its nuclear facilities under IAEA comprehensive safeguards confirms the continued resolve of the state’s parties to pursue the 1995 and 2000 commitments in this respect."

Israel is the only Middle East state not to have signed the NPT. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu has rejected the measure, calling it biased for excluding Iran.
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Offline Dig

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The Alex Jones Show – ARCHIVE – June 1st With Mike Rivero
http://www.prisonplanet.com/the-alex-jones-show-archive-june-1st-with-mike-rivero.html

Alex talks with regular guest Mike Rivero about the Israeli raid on the Gaza aid flotilla. Rivero is the publisher and webmaster of the WRH news portal and a radio talk show host on GCN. Alex also talks with researcher and author Webster Tarpley and takes your calls.

Watch the video archive and access the high quality MP3 by logging in at Prison Planet.tv and clicking on the “LIVE” page.

MEDIUM QUALITY FREE MP3 FILE: http://rss.nfowars.net/20100601_Tue_Alex.mp3
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

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I don't suppose the Turks are looking for a war, i see them as only wanting to help the aid get through, at this point i applaud the Turks.

Offline Dig

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Israeli Knesset Member: Israel Wanted High Number Of Fatalities
Navy Commander: “Next time we’ll use more force”
http://www.prisonplanet.com/israeli-knesset-member-israel-wanted-high-number-of-fatalities.html
Steve Watson
Prisonplanet.com
Tuesday, Jun 1st, 2010

A member of the Israeli Knesset, the legislative branch of the Israeli government, who was on board the Marmara ship when it was ambushed by IDF troops, has told reporters that the intention of the raid was to kill as many on board as they could in order to ward off others from attempting to reach Gaza by sea.

Hanin Zoabi, who currently serves as a member of the Knesset representing the Balad party, made the following comments at a press gathering today:

“It was clear from the size of the force that boarded the ship that the purpose was not only to stop this sail, but to cause the largest possible number of fatalities in order to stop such initiatives in the future.”

Zoabi added that the international flotilla to Gaza did not have any intention to cause violence:

“Our goal was to break the siege. We had no plans for a confrontation. Israel carried out a provocative military operation. Israel is used to doing as it pleases with the Palestinians. The main problem is not the ship, but the siege.”

Zoabi, a Palestinian Arab citizen of Israel, also told the media that she did not hear any warning from the Israeli commandos before they boarded the ship, an account that conflicts with statements from several Israeli government officials.

“They were dinghies and choppers. At 4:30 am the forces landed quickly. I did not hear any warning from the ships, because noise was coming from the ships and the choppers. Within 10 minutes there were already three bodies. The entire operation took about an hour.” Zoabi said.

Zoabi described gunshots coming from the Israeli boats toward her direction. While she also claimed that from her vantage point there was no resistance from the activists once the commandoes boarded, video footage has revealed that the troops were attacked with poles. However, the evidence suggests that this was after the fact that they had been fired upon, and sustained fatalities, despite raising a white flag.

“A clear message was being sent to us, for us to know that our lives were in danger. We convened that we were not interested in a confrontation. What we saw was five bodies. There were only civilians and there were no weapons. There was a sense that I may not come out of it alive. Israel spoke of a provocation, but there was no provocation.” Zoabi said.

Zoabi’s party published a statement saying, “Those who should be questioned are Barak and Netanyahu, who gave the order for an armed takeover in the middle of the sea. Behind this crime are criminals who should be interrogated.”

As prominent political scientist Norman Finklestein has pointed out, the Israeli government convened and mapped out what actions would be taken against the flotilla weeks ago. Given that heavily armed elite commandos were sent in under cover of darkness and reportedly fired at sleeping civilians according to eyewitnesses, it can only be assumed that the intention of the Israeli government all along was to use force, as Hanin Zoabi claims.

This is backed up by the discovery of an apparent assassination list which had been prepared in advance by the Israelis, showing names and pictures of people on board of the ships to be murdered, who, according to Israel, were “involved in the International humanitarian aid for Gaza”.

Prior to the launch of the Flotilla, it was suggested in the Israeli press that the involvement of pro-Palistinian and Hamas-affiliated figures involved in the convoy, including Zoabi, indicated that the mission was not humanitarian in its nature and was a direct provocation.

The flotilla was also manned by the head of the Islamic Movement’s Northern Branch Raed Salah and the head of the Arab-Israeli Higher Monitoring Committee Muhammad Zidan, as well as members of the Muslim Brothers activist movement in Britain.

In the wake of what has unfolded, Israeli officials have seized on the presence of these figures to justify the actions of the IDF.

However, while Israel considers these people enemies of the state, it is clear from videos and testimony presented on the websites witnessgaza.com and freegaza.org that the flotilla, which was manned by over 700 activists, intellectuals and political figures from over 40 countries, was entirely peaceful and constituted no physical threat to Israel.

Despite worldwide condemnation, Israeli forces have declared that next time they will use more force.

“We boarded the ship and were attacked as if it was a war,” a top Navy commander told The Jerusalem Post.

“That will mean that we will have to come prepared in the future as if it was a war.”

Israeli has also released images of what it says are weapons found aboard the Marmara. They consist of a hammer, a wrench, a spanner, a screwdriver, kitchen knives, wooden and metal poles – all items you would find on board the boat in any situation. Other items include a slingshot and some rocks and a bottle with tubing and wires that Israel calls an “improvised explosive device” – hardly an impressive arsenal, certainly not something you’d go about attacking a machine gun wielding elite commando unit with.

Another two ships, including The Rachel Corrie, are expected to attempt to enter Israeli waters in the coming days. Activists on board the Corrie are reported to have decided to go ahead with their attempt to break Israel’s blockade.

Because the Corrie is is an Irish-flagged vessel, any attack on it in international waters would be an attack on the government and people of Ireland. Michael Higgins, the foreign affairs spokesman of the Irish Labour Party today called on the Government to demand safe passage for the Corrie.

In a statement, he said some of those on the vessel had contacted him earlier today and had stressed they wanted to avoid conflict and to be allowed unload their cargo to help the residents of the Gaza Strip.

“The Minister for Foreign Affairs . . . must make it clear that any assault on the Rachel Corrie would be regarded as a hostile act against Ireland and a clear breach of international law that could not be ignored by this country,” Mr Higgins said.
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I don't suppose the Turks are looking for a war, i see them as only wanting to help the aid get through, at this point i applaud the Turks.

I believe this.  However, of course, they will be blamed for firing the first shot if something bad happens.  I just hope they video everything.

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I got a phone call and didn't hear that whole exchange. Was the caller saying that there was prior warning to this in the newspapers?

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Witnesses deny that any of aid protesters were armed
http://www.prisonplanet.com/witnesses-deny-that-any-of-aid-protesters-were-armed.html
Diana Sweet
Raw Story
Tuesday, June 1, 2010

BERLIN — Three visibly shaken Germans, who experienced a deadly raid by the Israeli military on an aid flotilla bound for Gaza, denied on Tuesday that anyone on board was armed, according to the news wire service AFP.

“The Israeli government justifies the raid because they were attacked. This is absolutely not the case,” former member of parliament Norman Paech, 72, wrapped in a blue blanket, told reporters in Berlin.

“This was not an act of self-defence.”

His comments were backed up by two others on board the convoy when it was raided at dawn on Monday in international waters, MPs Inge Hoeger, 59, and Annette Groth, 56.

“We felt like we were in a war, like we were being kidnapped,” Hoeger said.

“We wanted to bring aid to Gaza. Nobody had a weapon.”

Moreover, the Arab network Al Jazeera has released video of the event, which appears to show that Israel fired on the ship before storming it.
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

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Mavi Marmara Incident Sabotages Peace Process
http://www.prisonplanet.com/mavi-marmara-incident-sabotages-peace-process.html
Kurt Nimmo
Prison Planet.com
Tuesday, June 1, 2010

A few hours after Israeli commandos boarded a Turkish aid ship bound for Gaza and met resistance, the Israeli ambassador to Denmark claimed the flotilla had links to al-Qaeda. “Before the flotilla entered Israeli waters, rumor had it that the organizers (of the aid initiative) had links with the al-Qaeda terrorist network,” Arthur Avnon said from Copenhagen.

Israel has a history of creating and funding Islamic terror groups, including al-Qaeda cells. In 2002, Palestinian security forces arrested a group of Palestinians for collaborating with Israel and posing as operatives of Osama bin Laden’s al-Qaeda terrorist network, the Sydney Morning Herald reported (the original article has since found its way to the memory hole).

The fake al-Qaeda cell emerged at the same time the Israeli army attacked the Bureij refugee camp in the Gaza Strip and killed ten people. The arrests came two days after Israeli Prime Minister Ariel Sharon charged al-Qaeda militants were operating in Gaza and in Lebanon.

Israel’s raid on the Gaza-bound ships arrived on the heels of Obama’s warning on May 11 that the U.S. would hold the Israelis and Palestinians accountable if either side were to take actions that undermined U.S.-mediated talks between the two.

Obama made an earlier pledge to pave the way for an independent Palestinian state if the peace process remains deadlocked in September. On May 2, the Sydney Morning Herald reported that the U.S. had formulated a secret plan with European allies to convene an international peace conference by the end of the year.

The Israeli raid may in fact torpedo Obama’s peace campaign. “One of the casualties of Israel’s deadly commando raid on a Turkish vessel carrying aid to Palestinians in the Gaza Strip may be the Obama administration’s diplomatic strategy in the Mideast,” reports the Associated Press. “Whatever the truth of the incident, the Obama administration finds itself caught between Israel and its critics at a time when the U.S. is trying to push a broad agenda aimed at bringing stability to the troubled region.”

On May 24, less than a week before the Mavi Marmara incident, Israeli PM Benjamin Netanyahu trekked to Washington to hold talks with Obama behind closed doors. The BBC reported that the meeting was held in a “good atmosphere” despite Israeli plans to build 1,600 new residences in East Jerusalem. A fracas ensued over the issue after Israel announced its plans to build in the disputed area during a visit by vice president Joe Biden.

“The substance and timing of the announcement, particularly with the launching of proximity talks, is precisely the kind of step that undermines the trust we need right now,” Biden said in a statement. “We must build an atmosphere to support negotiations, not complicate them.”

Israel has continuously violated efforts to establish peace with the Palestinians and has seized Palestinian lands and built settlements since Menachem Begin made a commitment to Jimmy Carter at Camp David in 1978 not to do so.

Israeli writer Amos Oz has placed blame squarely on both sides. “I maintain that Oslo was not given even a day’s grace. Immediately, even before the ink was dry, the one side planned jihad and the brainwashing for jihad, while the other planned settlements. Therefore, I don’t think Oslo failed, because Oslo was never tried.” The Oslo Declaration of Principles toward resolving the crisis was signed on September 13, 1993.

“Extremist Jews and extremist Arabs will continue to sabotage the peace plan just as they undermined the Oslo Accords,” Ray Hanania wrote for the Jerusalem Post in April. “They don’t want peace because they each believe they can get it all if they can just keep the conflict going.”

In 2002 Richard Sale, writing for the UPI, revealed how beginning in the late 1970s Israel gave direct and indirect financial aid to its primary adversary, Hamas, over a period of years. Israel “aided Hamas directly — the Israelis wanted to use it as a counterbalance to the PLO (Palestinian Liberation Organization),” Tony Cordesman, Middle East analyst for the Center for Strategic Studies, told Sale.

Although the Israeli government and the corporate media are in the process of spinning the Mavi Marmara story in Israel’s favor — underscoring a video of ship passengers attacking commandos, displaying photographs of alleged arms caches aboard the ship, and making ludicrous claims about al-Qaeda — the fact remains that Gaza suffers from an Israeli blockade and repeated Israeli attacks.

Israel conducted an airstrike on the Gaza town of Beit Lahiya today and killed three people. The IDF said the strike came after two Qassam rockets launched from Gaza reached the Ashkelon area of Israel.

Meanwhile, it looks like the Mavi Marmara incident will continue to dominate headlines and the confrontation between activists and Israel may escalate.

“A new high-seas confrontation between Israel and pro-Palestinian protesters is looming after the Free Gaza Movement yesterday announced another two boats will attempt to break Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip,” reports the Australian today. Greta Berlin of the Free Gaza Movement told the newspaper another cargo boat was off the coast of Italy en route to Gaza. “We think eventually Israel will get some kind of common sense. They’re going to have to stop the blockade of Gaza, and one of the ways to do this is for us to continue to send the boats,” she said.
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

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NATO Wants Probe Of Israeli Raid
http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2010/06/01/nato-wants-probe-of-israe_n_596366.html
First Posted: 06- 1-10 01:52 PM   |   Updated: 06- 1-10 01:52 PM


JERUSALEM (AP) -- Pro-Palestinian activists sent another boat to challenge Israel's blockade of the Gaza Strip on Tuesday and Egypt declared it was temporarily opening a crossing into the Palestinian territory after a raid on an aid flotilla that ended with Israeli soldiers killing nine activists.

The raid provoked ferocious international condemnation of Israel, raised questions at home, and appeared likely to increase pressure to end the blockade that has deepened the poverty of the 1.5 million Palestinians in the strip.

NATO on Tuesday joined calls for a "prompt, impartial, credible and transparent investigation" into the raid. "As a matter of urgency, I also request the immediate release of the detained civilians and ships held by Israel," said NATO Secretary General Anders Fogh Rasmussen in a statement after representatives of the alliance's 28 nations had met.

"Turkey called the emergency meeting, but its representative did not demand that the alliance take collective action against Israel, said a diplomat who attended the talks," the Jerusalem Post reported.

Turkey, which unofficially supported the flotilla, has led the criticism, calling the Israeli raid a "bloody massacre" and demanding that Washington condemn the raid. The White House has reacted cautiously, calling for disclosure of all the facts.

There were signs, however, that the long-term strategic partnership between Israel and its most important Muslim ally would endure: Turkey canceled three joint land and sea exercises, but appeared to be otherwise maintaining deep military ties that include the planned delivery of $183 million in Israeli drones this summer.

Israeli Defense Minister Ehud Barak spoke to his Turkish counterpart as well as their chief of staff Monday, and they agreed that the raid wouldn't affect weapons deals, defense officials said. The officials spoke on condition of anonymity because they were discussing sensitive military ties.
Story continues below

Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu's spokesman, Mark Regev, indicated Israel would consider ways to ease the blockade to allow more goods into Gaza - a policy that has been quietly under way in recent months.

"We have been expanding the assistance that has been going into the Gaza Strip - both the volume and the variety of goods - and we have ongoing dialogue with the international community.

But he stressed that Israel could not end the blockade, fearing that Hamas would ship rockets and other weapons into the area. "We cannot have unfettered naval cargo going into the Gaza Strip," he said.

Amid the tensions, the Israeli military said it carried out an airstrike in Gaza on Tuesday, and an Islamic militant group said three of its members were killed after firing rockets into southern Israel. Israeli authorities say the rockets landed in open areas and caused no injuries.

Two militants infiltrating into Israel from Gaza were killed in a separate incident Tuesday, the military said.

In other violence, Israeli hospital officials said an American woman lost her eye during a demonstration Monday in Jerusalem against the naval raid. Emily Henochowicz of Maryland was in intensive care after undergoing surgery, said hospital spokeswoman Yael Bossem-Levy. Witnesses said Henochowicz, 21, was hit by a tear gas canister in the face while Palestinian youths were throwing rocks, although she was standing at a distance.

The pro-Palestinian flotilla had been headed to Gaza with tens of thousands of tons of aid that Israel bans from Gaza. After days of warnings, Israel intercepted the flotilla under the cover of darkness early Monday, setting off a violent melee that left nine activists dead and dozens of people, including seven soldiers, wounded. Most of the dead were believed to be Turks.

Israel said 679 people were arrested, and about 50 of those had left the country voluntarily. Hundreds who refused to cooperate remained jailed and subject to deportation.

Israel says the Gaza blockade is needed to prevent the Iranian-backed Hamas, which has fired thousands of rockets into the Jewish state, from building up its arsenal. It also wants to pressure Hamas to free an Israeli soldier it has held for four years.

Critics say the blockade has failed to weaken Hamas but further strapped an already impoverished economy. It also has prevented Gaza from rebuilding after a devastating Israeli military offensive early last year.

Egypt, which has enforced the blockade with Israel since Hamas militants seized control of Gaza in 2007, said it was opening the border for several days to allow aid into the area as a humanitarian gesture. It was unclear, however, when the frontier would open.

Several thousand Gazans - some in cars with suitcases piled on their roofs, others on foot - rushed to the Egyptian border, hoping to take advantage of a rare chance to escape the blockaded territory.

The Hamas Interior Ministry said authorities were not prepared to open the crossing and noted that government employees were on strike to mourn those killed in Monday's raid. Large crowds of people milled about the crossing, occasionally shouting at border guards, but there was no unrest.

Dozens of Hamas police with automatic weapons patrolled the area to maintain order.
"We are working to help residents take advantage of this opportunity," said Hamas Interior Ministry spokesman Ihab Ghussein. "We hope it will be open all the time, not just as a response to yesterday's events."

Greta Berlin said the Free Gaza Movement, which organized the flotilla, would not be deterred and that another cargo boat was off the coast of Italy en route to Gaza. A second boat carrying about three dozen passengers is expected to join it, Berlin said. She said the two boats would arrive in the region late this week or early next week.

"This initiative is not going to stop," she said from the group's base in Cyprus. "We think eventually Israel will get some kind of common sense. They're going to have to stop the blockade of Gaza, and one of the ways to do this is for us to continue to send the boats."

The Israeli military refused to say how it would respond to the arrival of new Gaza-bound ships. But Israeli Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said, "there is no change in policy" and urged activists to send the aid into Gaza through current, authorized means.

"We have no intention to use violence and there is no need for this to end violently," Palmor said. "If they want the aid to get to Gaza, they can send through the regular peaceful channels. I think they understand that seeking confrontation will not do them any good."

Protests erupted in a number of Muslim countries, including Turkey, which unofficially supported the flotilla, Indonesia and Malaysia, where a Palestinian man slashed himself outside the U.S. Embassy.

Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, an outspoken critic of Israel, told lawmakers the Israeli raid was an attack "on international law, the conscience of humanity and world peace."

"This bloody massacre by Israel on ships that were taking humanitarian aid to Gaza deserves every kind of curse," he said, demanding that Israel immediately halt its "inhumane" blockade of Gaza.

Turkey's Foreign Ministry said four Turkish citizens were confirmed slain by Israeli commandos and another five were also believed to be Turks. Israeli authorities were still trying to confirm their nationalities.

Thousands of pro-Islamic and nationalist Turks have poured into the streets in Istanbul and Ankara since the report of the Israeli raid. Protesters with Palestinian and Turkish flags shouted "Down with Israel!" outside Israeli diplomatic missions.

Within Israel, the raid sparked intense debate over why the military operation went awry.
Israel sent commandos onto the six ships carrying nearly 700 activists after mission organizers ignored the government's call to bring the cargo to an Israeli port, where it would be inspected and transferred to Gaza. In most cases, the passengers quickly surrendered. But on the largest ship, the Turkish-flagged Mavi Marmara, the forces encountered resistance.
Israeli commandos rappelled on ropes from a helicopter and army videos showed them being attacked by angry activists with metal rods and one soldier being thrown off the ship. Others jumped overboard to escape the angry mob. Israeli authorities said they were attacked by knives, clubs and live fire from two pistols wrested from soldiers. The soldiers then opened fire, killing nine.

Israeli military analysts said it was a mistake to send commandos to board the Marmara and the military could have used non-lethal weapons such as tear gas. They also said the intelligence-gathering was faulty.

Retired Gen. Shlomo Brom asked why the ships' engines weren't sabotaged instead.
"There were certain objectives to this operation. One was not to let the vessels get to Gaza, but the other objective was to do it without any damage to Israel's image," Brom told The Associated Press. "Certainly it failed."

The daily Maariv, in a front-page headline, called the raid a "debacle."

Sabine Haddad, spokeswoman for the Israeli Interior Ministry, said 679 people were arrested and handed deportation orders. By midafternoon Tuesday, some 50 people had left the country voluntarily. But hundreds refused to cooperate and were jailed.

"The rest said they wanted to go to jail and are at Beersheba jail going through a process of deportation," she said. She said judges were hearing the cases and that almost everyone would be expelled within the next few days.

She said more than half of those arrested were from Turkey, with others coming from more than 30 other countries, including Britain, Algeria, Jordan, Kuwait, Germany and the U.S. Israeli police said four Arab Israeli citizens would face criminal charges.

Israel did not allow access to the activists, but a handful who were deported arrived home Tuesday, including a Turkish woman and her 1-year-old son, six Greeks and three German lawmakers.

"There was a massacre on board," said the woman, Nilufer Cetin, whose husband, Ekrem, is the Marmara's engineer and was still in Israeli custody. "The ship turned into a lake of blood."
Norman Paech, a former member of Germany's Left Party who was aboard the Marmara, said he only saw three activists resisting.

"They had no knives, no axes, only sticks that they used to defend themselves," Paech said at a news conference in Berlin after he and four other Germans returned from Tel Aviv. He added, however, that he could "not rule out" that others used weapons somewhere else on the boat.

Turkey said it was sending three ambulance planes to Israel to return 20 Turkish activists injured in the operation and had other aircraft ready to get other activists. About 400 Turks took part in the flotilla.

The flotilla was the ninth attempt by sea to breach the blockade Israel and Egypt imposed after Hamas violently seized the territory. Israel allowed five seaborne aid shipments through but snapped the blockade shut after its 2009 war in Gaza.

There was little call in Israel to end the blockade. Israelis have little sympathy for Gaza, which sent thousands of rockets and mortar rounds crashing into Israel for years before last year's war.

The Israeli-Gaza border was tense following the naval raid.

The Iranian-backed Islamic Jihad said three of its fighters were killed Tuesday shortly after firing rockets into southern Israel. Israeli authorities say the rockets landed in open areas and caused no injuries.

The Israeli military confirmed its airstrike, and Gaza's chief medical examiner also said there were three deaths.

On Tuesday morning, the Israeli military said Gaza militants infiltrated Israel and exchanged fire with troops. Israeli rescue services said two militants were killed, but the military would not immediately confirm that.
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline larsonstdoc

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  There it is in plain site.  This attack sabotages the "Peace Process".  The NWO doesn't want peace.  There is no money (in their minds) in peace.

Offline needguide

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just in case some of you may not be aware of it........America is in Israels Back Pocket!

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Offline larsonstdoc

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just in case some of you may not be aware of it........America is in Israels Back Pocket!

Yes we know that we are Israeli-occupied territory.

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wtf is tarpley talking about anyways.

Offline grapecrusher1

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Greek activist, says his boat was boarded an hour after the attack on the Marmara when they could hear gunfire.

"They fired rubber coated bullets, tear gas and then used electroshock weapons on some activists," he told Skai television shortly after Israel deported him and five compatriots to Athens.

"An hour beforehand, at 0430 local time, we heard gunfire on the Turkish boat Mavi Marmara, the Israelis jumped from helicopters onto the boat," he said.


http://www.middle-east-online.com/english/?id=39320
 
"The meek shall inherit NOTHING" -- Zappa

Offline grapecrusher1

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The 6 boats origin.

1. Mavi Marmara passenger Flagged in Turkey

2. Sofia cargo ship Flagged in Greece

3. Gazza 1 cargo ship Flagged in Turkey

4. Gazza 2 cargo ship Flagged in Turkey

5. Spendoni passenger Flagged in Greece

6. Challenger 1 Flagged in U.S.
"The meek shall inherit NOTHING" -- Zappa

Offline rio

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How long before the Israelis give us an Operation: Flotilla Murder t-shirt?


Offline Dig

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Israeli raid of Freedom Flotilla complicates US efforts against Iran

The Israeli raid of the so-called Freedom Flotilla bound for Gaza takes the international spotlight away from Iran and its nuclear program. The raid is also likely to make it harder to restart Israeli-Palestinian talks.

Former US Ambassador to Mauritania Edward Peck, center, speaks in front of the White House in Washington, Tuesday, during a protest against Israel's raid against the 'Freedom Flotilla' taking aid to the blockaded Gaza Strip.

http://www.csmonitor.com/USA/Foreign-Policy/2010/0601/Israeli-raid-of-Freedom-Flotilla-complicates-US-efforts-against-Iran
By Howard LaFranchi, Staff writer / June 1, 2010 Washington

Israel’s raid of a flotilla of humanitarian aid destined for Gaza Monday ratcheted up already-simmering tensions between Washington and Jerusalem – and is likely to complicate US efforts to rein in Iran and to jump-start the Israeli-Palestinian peace process.

Yet Washington issued some of the blandest official reaction to the deadly incident involving the so-called Freedom Flotilla. That made Israel look more like the friend the United States will always stand by – but which it wishes would act better in public.

“I imagine they [US officials] are reading the Israelis the riot act just now,” says Daniel Levy, co-director of the Middle East Task Force at the New America Foundation in Washington. If the situation does not deteriorate further, the impact on a specific US goal such as restarting Israeli-Palestinian peace talks may not be devastating, he says.

“What this does bring to the surface,” Mr. Levy says, “is the impact that an ongoing Israeli occupation is having on long-term American interests” in the Middle East.

Iran is a case in point. The US has been pressing for increased international isolation of Iran over its nuclear program – a goal shared by Israel. The next step in that effort is to be a vote in the United Nations Security Council on a US-sponsored resolution of economic sanctions against Iran. But the flotilla incident robs the international spotlight from Iran and places it anew on Israel and actions it says are necessary in an environment hostile to its interests.

Nine people aboard a Turkish ship bound for Gaza were killed. The aid ship was in international waters when raided.

The UN Security Council approved a statement condemning the loss of life in the incident and calling for a “prompt, impartial, credible, and transparent investigation conforming to international standards.”

Israel maintained its actions against the ship were “defensive” in nature, but it still faces a barrage of condemnation from Turkey (four of the dead were Turks) to the European Union, which will put further strains on President Obama’s beleaguered Middle East diplomacy.

Mr. Obama called for the facts behind the incident to be brought to light and regretted the loss of life. Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu was to have held talks with Obama at the White House Tuesday, but instead he rushed home to address the incident’s repercussions.

On Tuesday, French President Nicolas Sarkozy issued a statement saying he was “deeply shocked at the tragic consequences of the Israeli military operation” and condemning “the disproportionate use of force” by Israel.

Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan went further, castigating Israel for a “bloody massacre” he said was a stab at “international law, the conscience of humanity, and world peace.” Turkey has traditionally been Israel’s closest friend among Muslim countries, but the incident spelled a further deterioration in relations that have soured of late.

Coincidentally, Turkish Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoglu was in Washington for talks Tuesday with Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton. Those talks, which had been expected to focus on Iran and the US push for a sanctions resolution, were now seen shifting to the Gaza incident.

Mr. Davutoglu said before his State Department visit that he would seek a US condemnation of the Israeli action, but the US seemed unlikely to go that far.

What the aid-ship raid does accomplish is renewed global attention to the Gaza problem and the corrosive impact that the humanitarian situation there is having on broader US and international-community goals in the region, says Levy of the New America Foundation.

“This puts a spotlight on what looks like a lack of attention to Gaza in the Obama policy, which is of course the intention of the solidarity [flotilla] folks,” he says. While he counters that the Obama administration has “not been indifferent” to Gaza’s plight, he adds that the incident risks further blemishing the US image across a region where it has been working to repair that image.

Prime Minister Erdogan appeared to zero in on the deep sensitivity that Muslim populations have to the Israeli occupation of the West Bank and to Gaza’s isolation. He called the Israeli blockade of Gaza “inhumane” and said, “Israel cannot ensure its security by drawing the hatred of the entire world.”

While those words far outstripped any US response, they nevertheless reflected the perspective that the Obama administration has labored to share with Washington’s friends in Jerusalem – that a globally unpopular policy toward the Palestinians does not serve Israel’s long-term security interests.
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline Dig

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Israeli raid on Freedom Flotilla shatters key Turkey-Israel ties

The raid on the Turkish-led Gaza Freedom Flotilla has dealt a harsh blow to Turkey-Israel relations. Ankara's sharp response is strongest signal yet that Turkey may abandon its bid to be regional mediator.

Palestinians hold Turkish and Palestinian flags during a protest against the Israeli naval commando raid on a flotilla attempting to break the blockade on Gaza, in the east Jerusalem neighborhood of Sheikh Jarrah, Tuesday.

http://www.csmonitor.com/layout/set/print/content/view/print/305214
By Yigal Schleifer, Correspondent
posted June 1, 2010 at 2:17 pm EDT Istanbul, Turkey

One of the greatest diplomatic casualties of the Israeli raid on the Turkish-led Gaza freedom flotilla, which left at least nine dead and dozens injured, may be irreversible damage to Turkey-Israel relations.

Following the flotilla raid, Turkey summoned its ambassador to Israel back to Ankara. In remarks made in parliament on Tuesday, Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan spoke in harsh terms that seemed to leave little room for an easy rapprochement with Israel.

"This bloody massacre by Israel on ships that were taking humanitarian aid to Gaza deserves every kind of curse. This attack is on international law, the conscience of humanity and world peace," he said.

IN PICTURES: The Israeli separation barrier: A West Bank wall

"No one should test Turkey's patience," added Mr. Erdogan, who has grown increasingly critical of Israel since the start of the Gaza war in late 2008. "Turkey's hostility is as strong as its friendship is valuable."

Ankara’s harsh response to Israel’s action is the strongest signal yet that Turkey may be abandoning its efforts to become a regional mediator between Israel and its Muslim neighbors, favoring instead a more pointed foreign policy. The shift will allow it to capitalize on Muslim frustration with Israel, giving an added boost to its already rising profile in the Middle East.

“This mediation thing is over. Turkey now is one of the sides in the Middle East conflict. It is quite clearly opposed to Israel,” says Sami Kohen, a veteran Turkish political analyst and columnist who writes for the Milliyet daily. “This event is almost a climax in this shift.”

“Turkey’s hand in the region is strengthened now,” Mr. Kohen adds. “There is now more reason for Turkey to take a more active part in the events of the Middle East, since it has suffered personally from this attack. Now it can justify its anti-Israeli positions, which get a good deal of sympathy in the Arab and Islamic world.”
New complexities for US alliance

Ankara's shift complicates a historic alliance between Turkey and the US, which has become more important in recent years. An air base in southern Turkey is one of the most important transit bases for ferrying troops and supplies to Afghanistan. Turkish mediation, meanwhile, had gotten Israel and Syria back to the peace table until that effort was aborted when the Gaza war broke out.

Increased tension between Turkey and Israel clouds one of the few sunny spots the US had previously enjoyed in the region.

The deterioration in the once-close relationship between Turkey and Israel has been mirrored by an equally precipitous rise in Turkey’s visibility and involvement in the Middle East, an area that it had kept at arm’s length for decades because of historical enmity and mutual suspicion.

After coming to power in 2002, the government of the liberal Islamic Justice and Development Party (AKP) worked to forge close relations with neighbors such as Syria and Iran.

“It’s [an AKP] project whose goal is to set up Turkey as an international player, on the one hand, and to get recognition of Turkey as a moderate, market-friendly leader in the Muslim world and be treated as such in international bodies,” says Anat Lapidot-Firilla, senior research fellow at the Van Leer Jerusalem Institute.

“The significance of this is that we are going to see more and more Turkish pressure to be involved in regional affairs and global affairs. They are raising the level of their requests and their global aspirations.”
A 'juddering halt' to mediation efforts

Until recently, Turkey’s growing involvement in the Middle East included a desire to parlay its good relations with both Israel and the Arab states into a role as a regional mediator. Ankara, for example, hosted Israel and Syria for a round of (ultimately failed) secret peace talks in 2008.

But for now, analysts say, Turkey appears to have abandoned its mediation efforts in the region in return for a more pronounced leadership role in the Middle East.

“For the time being, I don’t see any kind of opening for the peace process. So if there isn’t any peace process, there isn’t any need for the good offices of a mediator,” says Gencer Ozcan, an expert on Turkey-Israel relations at Istanbul’s Bilgi University.

Andrew Finkel, a columnist with the English-language daily Today’s Zaman, says that Turkey’s declared policy of “zero problems with neighbors” – which has led Ankara to make groundbreaking moves in its relations with Armenia and Cyprus, for example – has come to a “juddering halt” in the case of Israel.

“Instead, Ankara appears to have given its tacit consent to another policy of sharpening contradictions, of trying to lance the boil instead of putting soothing ointment on the blister,” he says.

“Turkey has always avoided the trap of being in the anti-Israel camp. Also, its relations with Israel have always been an acid test of Turkey being neither fish nor fowl, not being part of the East or the West, that it’s not part of an ideological anti-Israel camp,” Mr. Finkel adds. “One of Turkey’s credentials has been that it’s had good relations with Israel and that those relations have paid good dividends in the past.”

In previous years, for example, Turkey's close relations with Israel helped it gain access to the halls of power in Washington and to deal with regional intelligence and security issues.
Why Palestinians urged Turkey to keep talking to Israel

But while Turkey may now earn short-term gains from distancing itself from Israel, there are concerns about the long-term effect of a serious breach between the two countries might have on an already conflict-ridden region.

“Turkey has gradually been losing one of the most significant leverages that it was using in the Arab world,” says Ozcan. “Even the Palestinians were telling Ankara to keep talking to the Israelis.”
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline Dig

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After Israeli raid, Freedom Flotilla aid starts to flow to Gaza

Ships involved in the "Freedom Flotilla" were towed into the Israel port of Ashdod after the Israeli raid Monday. Some of the humanitarian aid is being delivered by Israel to Gaza. But Hamas says it won't accept it until flotilla activists are released from Israeli detention.

Turkish activists wear life jackets after receiving information of approaching of Israeli military ships, as they hold a news conference on board the Mavi Marmara ship in the Mediterranean Sea, late Sunday, shortly before and Israeli raid on the Freedom Flotilla.

http://www.csmonitor.com/layout/set/print/content/view/print/305193
By Erin Cunningham, Correspondent
posted June 1, 2010 at 12:56 pm EDT Ashdod and Kerem-Shalom, Israel

A day after a botched Israeli raid to stop the Gaza "Freedom Flotilla" from carrying some 700 activists and 10,000 tons of humanitarian aid to the besieged territory, details remain scant about the operation, in which at least nine activists were killed.

Several ships were towed into the port around noon on Monday. The largest passenger ship, the Turkish-flagged Mavi Marmara arrived about 6:45 p.m. Monday as the sun was setting on a day that saw at least nine of the approximately 600 activists on board killed in a skirmish with Israeli commandos.

Israel has also barred journalists from accessing the Ashdod port to which the ships, and their passengers, were towed – and even the wounded were being treated at hospitals under heavy military guard.

Israel says its commandos, which rappelled onto the largest Turkish-flag ship from helicopters, faced violent resistance from the activist passengers, and used live fire in self-defense. Footage provided by both passengers and the Israeli military show activists beating Israeli commandos, but human rights groups have come out against what they say was Israel’s “excessive use of force.”

“Israel should have stopped the boats, but not so foolishly,” says Noam Gali, a retired Israeli humanities professor who traveled to Ashdod to observe the scene. “It doesn’t make me sympathize, as an Israeli, with the activists, but we made a mistake.”
Buzzing helicopters as ships unload

Apache helicopter gunships buzzed noisily over the otherwise sleepy Israeli seaport of Ashdod, where dozens of local activists and foreign journalists had descended on the waterfront in anticipation of the seized fleet’s arrival.

“We are trying to express our solidarity with the activists and with the people of Gaza by maintaining a presence at the port,” said Inna Michaeli, one of about 100 left-wing Israeli activists and coordinator with the Coalition of Women for Peace, on Monday. “But we are being stopped by the police and by the army. They have turned our country into a military zone.”
Israel's army transfers aid to Gaza

As international criticism and even fury mounted in the wake of the attack, carried out in international waters on the Mediterranean, Israel scrambled to defend its decision to intercept the boats.

On Tuesday, Israeli military officials allowed journalists to tour the country’s only commercial crossing with the Gaza Strip, Kerem-Shalom, where they say they are currently transferring the first shipments of the flotilla’s humanitarian supplies into the blockaded territory. Israel had opposed the flotilla out of concern that it could be used to smuggle weapons to Hamas, which runs the Gaza Strip and is considered by Israel, Europe, and the US to be a terrorist group.
Hamas rejects aid

But Hamas officials in Gaza rejected the aid, reports from the territory said. The Islamists said they would not accept the aid until Israel released the hundreds of foreign flotilla activists who had been detained in Ashdod upon arrival – and then only if the shipments were “complete.”

Among the 10,000 tons of aid is cement to help Gaza rebuild after Israel’s devastating three-week offensive on the territory last year. But Israel does not permit cement into the territory, because it can also be used to reinforce smuggling tunnels (to bring in weapons) along the Gaza border.

Uri Singer, head of the foreign relations branch of Israel’s Coordination of Government Activities in the Territories (COGAT), told journalists at a briefing Tuesday that while Israel had begun transferring some aid, it could not guarantee that all of it would be transferred until it reviewed the complete inventory.

“The [flotilla] goods arrived without any order or manifest,” said Mr. Singer. “We need to understand first what is on the ships, and then we will process and send the goods according to Israeli policy vis-à-vis the Gaza Strip.”
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline rio

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Israelis celebrate Flotilla raid murders
« Reply #588 on: June 01, 2010, 04:40:38 pm »
These people do not belong to the human family. Please save video and re-up to your YouTube or video sharing website.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sMzc1N1Cx3s

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MC8mrympKhM

Offline Not Deceived

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Re: Israelis celebrate Flotilla raid murders
« Reply #589 on: June 01, 2010, 05:08:10 pm »
These people do not belong to the human family. Please save video and re-up to your YouTube or video sharing website.

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sMzc1N1Cx3s

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MC8mrympKhM

Aren't Zionists wonderful people?  Let's celebrate the death of innocents.  Oh that's right, this is what Israel does daily Palestinians.  Now they get to brag about it on a global basis. 

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http://www.henrymakow.com/again_zionists_are_setting_jew.html

Again, Zionists Set Up Jews for Holocaust



May 31, 2010
Henry Makow, Ph.D.

Israel is the primary source of anti-Semitism in the world today, and jeopardizes the security of all Jews. Proclaiming itself the "Jewish State" but acting as a rogue state, Israel exposes all Jews to revulsion and retribution.

The murder of Gaza peace activists provides more evidence that the actual goal of Zionism is not to protect Jews from anti-Semitism but in fact, is to create anti-Semitism.

The purpose is to make Jews a pariah unto the nations with no choice but to follow Zionist dictates.

Eventually, they will be sacrificed for Zionist goals, as they were in the holocaust. This is because Zionism is a Masonic (Illuminati, cabalist, satanic) secret society intent on building a totalitarian New World Order. The majority of Jews have no part in this, except to be sacrificed again for a cause of which they have no inkling.

Zionists are stripping Israelis and Jews of moral legitimacy so they can be liquidated again without any compunction. And most Israelis and Jews  cooperate by supporting Israeli outrages with feeble excuses, blithely indifferent to the possible consequences.

Do the moral arithmetic: In 2006, Israel kills 1400 Lebanese and inflicts $10 billion in damage because 2 soldiers are captured. In 2009-10, Israel kills 1300 Gaza civilians and levels countless buildings because of a few popgun rockets. Now this- killing unarmed international peace activists bringing aid to the beleaguered Gazans.

    
JEWISH HOMELAND?

Israel would never have been created if it were only "a Jewish Homeland." Israel is intended to be the capital of the Rothschild Cabalist World Empire. Ordinary Jews have no role in this except as cannon fodder.

My grandparents died in the holocaust. I blame the Illuminati bankers who brought the Nazis to power.  I blame the Zionists for collaborating with the Nazis. I blame the Zionists for preventing European Jews from being rescued. I blame Zionists for stopping aid from reaching ghettos. I blame Zionists for rounding up Jews and sending them to concentration camps. I blame Zionists for sabotaging Jewish resistance.

Israel was not created as result of the holocaust. It was the other way round. The Nazis were brought to power partly to force Jews to set up Israel for the Rothschilds and the Illuminati.  



IRONIES

History is full of ironies!  The "freedom flotilla" reminds me of the ragtag Haganah ships who ran the British blockade to bring Jewish refugees to Palestine. Now it is deluded young Israelis playing the role of the British.

Before it was Jews who were starving in a ghetto surrounded by Nazis. Now it is Palestinians in a Gaza ghetto surrounded by Jews!

As usual, the Israelis are trying to portray the murder of 20 unarmed peace activists as an act of self defense. Machine gun toting commandos were attacked with sticks!!! One commando got skim milk powder thrown on his clean, freshly pressed uniform!

This is the classic Zionist tactic: despoil and kill and take everything. Then blame the victim for raising a hand in protest. Anti-Semites!!

Of course, the pathetic Zionist-controlled western media takes the Zionist line.

Most Jews are decent, good people. They believe in the Moral Order not the new world order.

Zionists aren't Jews.  It's about time more Jews realized it.

--

Related-- How Illuminati Set Up Holocaust      
http://www.savethemales.ca/are_jews_being_set_up_for_anot.html

Offline Dig

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http://www.henrymakow.com/again_zionists_are_setting_jew.html

Again, Zionists Set Up Jews for Holocaust



May 31, 2010
Henry Makow, Ph.D.

Israel is the primary source of anti-Semitism in the world today, and jeopardizes the security of all Jews. Proclaiming itself the "Jewish State" but acting as a rogue state, Israel exposes all Jews to revulsion and retribution.


Usually I find that Makow sensationizes and distracts, but dang! Thanks for posting.
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline Dig

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Israel to free Gaza flotilla detainees: sources
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6505UB20100601

(Reuters) - Israel decided on Tuesday to free hundreds of foreign activists detained aboard a Turkish-backed aid flotilla to Gaza, including some it had threatened to put on trial, two political sources said.

The sources said cabinet ministers decided amid rising world protests against Israel's raid of the flotilla on Monday in which nine people died, that some 680 activists seized on the boats would be released.



First time I hear that Israel actually buckles to international pressure. 680 captive? WTF?
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline larsonstdoc

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Israel to free Gaza flotilla detainees: sources
http://www.reuters.com/article/idUSTRE6505UB20100601

(Reuters) - Israel decided on Tuesday to free hundreds of foreign activists detained aboard a Turkish-backed aid flotilla to Gaza, including some it had threatened to put on trial, two political sources said.

The sources said cabinet ministers decided amid rising world protests against Israel's raid of the flotilla on Monday in which nine people died, that some 680 activists seized on the boats would be released.



First time I hear that Israel actually buckles to international pressure. 680 captive? WTF?

This is good news.

Offline rio

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Re: Israelis celebrate Flotilla raid murders
« Reply #594 on: June 01, 2010, 05:45:48 pm »
Jerusalem Post blogger Shmuel Rosner tries a Jedi mind trick and puts out the official Israeli line, disinformation and flat out lies and this is the view that is given to us by MSN via Slate Magazine.

Slate Magazine should be declared as enemies of Americans and frankly, of humanity and officially boycotted.

http://www.slate.com/id/2255572/?GT1=38001

Quote from:
Better information was needed. The commandos didn't know they were going to face an angry mob armed with knives and bats. Different equipment was needed: The raiders apparently didn't have enough nonlethal weapons on hand. A more creative approach was needed: Maybe a way to stop the ship without having to board it. But these are all just technical details of an operation gone sour. Those countries and organizations now wanting an "investigation" can get the answers they need without having to trouble themselves with a lengthy examination. Here's what happened: The soldiers were surprised by a mob; they saw their friends being lynched; they acted as any soldier would have and should have acted. To save their fellow soldiers, they opened fire. Civilians were killed. It's no cause for pride—but also nothing to be ashamed of.


And there you have it: killing the goyim is nothing to be ashamed of.

Offline Dig

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Re: Israelis celebrate Flotilla raid murders
« Reply #595 on: June 01, 2010, 06:03:04 pm »
Jerusalem Post blogger Shmuel Rosner tries a Jedi mind trick and puts out the official Israeli line, disinformation and flat out lies and this is the view that is given to us by MSN via Slate Magazine.

Slate Magazine should be declared as enemies of Americans and frankly, of humanity and officially boycotted.

http://www.slate.com/id/2255572/?GT1=38001

And there you have it: killing the goyim is nothing to be ashamed of.

JPost is worse than NYPost...all neocon, all the time. It is a yellow journo MIC rag.

Ha'aretz is the oldest newspaper and has criticized the attack from the onset:
http://rawstory.com/rs/2010/0531/haaretz-government-failed-test-results/

Also look at this comment from the Mossad chief:



Mossad chief: Israel gradually becoming burden on U.S.
Mossad Chief Meir Dagan said on Tuesday that Israel is progressively becoming a burden on the United States.
http://www.haaretz.com/news/diplomacy-defense/mossad-chief-israel-gradually-becoming-burden-on-u-s-1.293540

"Israel is gradually turning from an asset to the United States to a burden," said Dagan, speaking before the Knesset's Foreign Affairs and Defense Committee.  Dagan said that the U.S. government has recently examined the possibility of coercing a settlement on Israel and the Palestinians, but retreated from the idea after realizing it would not lead to a peace agreement. 

All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline Dig

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Crime writer Mankell held in Israel after aid boat attack: Sweden
http://rawstory.com/rs/2010/0531/crime-writer-mankell-held-israel-aid-boat-attack-sweden/
By Agence France-Presse
Monday, May 31st, 2010 -- 3:56 pm

STOCKHOLM — Swedish crime writer Henning Mankell, author of the Wallander detective series, is one of nine Swedes held in Israel Monday after landing from a Gaza-bound aid flotilla attacked by Israeli commandos, Sweden's foreign ministry said.

Mankell "has been detained ... In all, nine Swedes have been detained," ministry spokesman Anders Joerle told AFP, adding that they were not all being held at the same place and some had been imprisoned while others had simply been taken into custody.

"I think Henning Mankell is just being held in custody. I'm not sure. The Israelis have him in some kind of detention," he said.

Some of the Swedes had been very slightly injured, Joerle said, adding that some Swedes believed to have been travelling with the flotilla when it was attacked early Monday had yet to be reached.

The nine Swedes have reportedly been given the choice between accepting to be deported or to be tried in an Israeli court.

Earlier Monday evening, the foreign ministry countered a rumour set in motion at an anti-Israel demonstration in Oslo that Mankell had been shot in the attack, which left at least nine pro-Palestinian activists dead.

The 62-year-old author of the Wallander detective series joined the flotilla from Cyprus by way of smaller boats "after almost 48 hours of playing hide-and-seek with Cypriot police," Ship to Gaza Sweden said in a statement.

Mankell, whose books about world-weary detective Kurt Wallander have sold more than 25 million copies worldwide and have been adapted to film and television, said he was taking part in the flotilla to show his solidarity towards the Palestinian people.

"I think that when one talks about solidarity, one must always know that actions are what proves destiny," he told Swedish public radio last Thursday.

"It is with actions that we prove we are ready to support something we believe is important," he said.

In addition to Mankell, Ship to Gaza Sweden said nine Swedes were in the flotilla when it was attacked, including controversial Swedish-Israeli artist Dror Feiler, a parliamentarian and several doctors and academics.

The ships, carrying more than 700 passengers, were on a mission to deliver some 10,000 tonnes of supplies to Gaza, which has been under a crippling Israeli blockade since 2007.

Israel had warned the attempt to break the blockade was illegal and that it would intercept the ships.
All eyes are opened, or opening, to the rights of man. The general spread of the light of science has already laid open to every view the palpable truth, that the mass of mankind has not been born with saddles on their backs, nor a favored few booted and spurred, ready to ride them legitimately

Offline citizenx

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Still don't necessarily believe the flotilla memebers were even necessarily armed.

Definitely think this was an intentional provocation by Israel -- serving notice to the UN as it were.

I certainly hope thei situation doesn't lead to nuclear war in Iran or Korea as I live in one of those two places, but these things are absolutely connected all three of them.

No coincidence Israel has a nuclear-armed sub parked off Iran.

No coincidence Reuters reports the torpedo that may have sunk the Cheonan was German in design -- just like the torpedoes the Germans give Israel with Dolphin-class subs for reparations.

Offline Suriel

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'Israel is a Lunatic State' - Finkelstein on Gaza Flotilla Attack
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=eB_CKL5h2_8
"We have reached a stage at which we have surrounded ourselves with more things, but have less joy." - The Brothers Karamazov by Fyodor Dostoevsky translated by Ignat Avsey

Offline Guns Equal Freedom

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I just heard on Michael Savage that "another group of Hamas Gaza Aid Ships" are going to ship aid again to The Gaza Strip, but with The Turkey Military to help them.

Any links on this new news story?

This crap is some potential to be bad.
A Peaceful Anarchy would be like Utopia, but a Minarchy is reality.