As usual, Israel is presented as the villain. Damned if they do, and most assuredly, damned if they don't.
idfnadesk — May 31, 2010 — Video taken by IDF naval boat shows the passengers of the Mavi Marmara, one of the ships in the 'Free Gaza' Flotilla, violently attacking IDF soldiers who were trying to board the ship after having sent repeated requests for the boat to change course.
Large groups of passengers surrounded soldiers and beat them with metal poles and chairs, and threw one soldier over the side of the ship. Some passengers grabbed pistols from the IDF soldiers and opened fire. As a result of the attacks, seven IDF soldiers were injured, and nine of the passengers were killed.
The 'Free Gaza' Flotilla had publicly insisted on their non-violent intentions, however their violent attack on the IDF soldiers was clearly premeditated. They had knives, metal rods, firebombs and other items ready to use. (here)
As protesters in the Arab world take to the streets screaming- again, still - for the annihilation of Israel, the UN ignores it's own charter which says:
The UN Charter on the Law of the Sea says only if a vessel is suspected to be transporting weapons, or weapons of mass destruction, can it be boarded in international waters. Otherwise the permission of the ship's flag carrying nation must be sought. (here)
As is proved by pictures readily available all over the internet, the 'peace activists' were indeed armed, and were, indeed, intent to seriously harm IDF soldiers. They are NOT peace activists by any stretch of the imagination.
On the 29th May, there was this:
Photo by: ASSOCIATED PRESS
Haniyeh: Gaza flotilla a triumphBy ASSOCIATED PRESS AND JPOST.COM STAFF
Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh of Hamas said Saturday the flotilla carrying aid and activists to Gaza is a victory for his government and signals the end of the Israeli naval blockade, whether it reaches its destination or is intercepted by the Israeli navy.
"If the ships reach Gaza, it's a victory for Gaza," Haniyeh told some 400 supporters after touring Gaza City's small fishing harbor, where several smaller vessels breaking the blockade have docked in the past. "If they are intercepted and terrorized by the Zionists, it will be a victory for Gaza, too, and they will move again in new ships to break the siege of Gaza." (More here)
As world leaders line up to condemn the Israeli actions, the media follows right along, and the terrorists claim a propaganda victory.
Claudia Rosett writes:
Gaza Terror Flotilla
Gaza’s Hamas Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh has got the bloody propaganda triumph he was preparing for when he told followers last week that whatever came of the Gaza “aid” flotilla, it would be a win for Hamas – whether the ships reached Gaza, or ended up in a showdown with the Israelis at sea.
At least 10 people, possibly more, are reported dead, after Israeli forces boarded one of the ships, the Mavi Marmara, to stop it running the Israeli blockade on the terrorist enclave of Gaza. The “peace activists” had advertised themselves (scroll down to point 8 in their “mission” statement) as adhering to “nonviolence and nonviolent resistance in word and deed at all times.” This turned out to be a brazen lie. Whatever the “aid” aboard the ship, the “peace activists” were waiting with knives and metal clubs, with which they attacked the Israelis. Though some of the details are still unclear, there are also reports that they made a grab for Israeli guns, and Real Clear Politics — which has posted IDF video footage – says they had firebombs ready as well. (Update: more details in IDF footage here).
Out of this came the headlines the organizers of this terror tour had been looking for. All the usual folks are shocked! shocked! that a deliberate provocation, staged with all sorts of planning by the faux-peace-pals of Hamas, turned into a violent showdown. Reuters reports that France is “profoundly shocked,” Europe “calls for inquiry,” and Turkey’s Iran-lovin’ Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan is denouncing the Israelis for “state terrorism.” Washington “regrets loss of life” and is “examining circumstances” — though the basic circumstances here are no mystery whatsoever. They boil down to Israel being left by its craven Western allies to deal solo with the terrorism that boils out of Gaza, the support for that terrorism that flows from Syria and Iran, and the cheerleading — and apparently the helping hand — for this arrangement that emanates from the current Islamic leadership of Turkey. (More here)
From Honest Reporting, a synopsis:
And yes, the propaganda line IS being pushed. Sarah Palin had this caution on her FaceBook page today:
The media, as usual, seems to be reporting only one side of the Israeli Flotilla incident. Don’t trust the mainstream media to give you both sides of a story fairly… you must seek out fair reporting to ensure you have all the information.Israeli Flotilla: Don’t Take Mainstream Media Coverage at Face Value
As far too many in the media, and in various governments, rush to condemn Israel, we must put the recent events off Israel’s coast into the right perspective. This “relief” convoy was not about humanitarian aid, as the liberal mainstream media keeps reporting. The whole operation was designed to provoke Israel, not to provide supplies to Palestinians held hostage by Hamas terrorists in Gaza. Anyone who sees the video of Israeli commandos being attacked as they land on that ship knows the people aboard were vicious thugs, not “peace activists.” The media insults our intelligence with their outright mischaracterization of who these enemies are.
Israel delivers thousands of tons of humanitarian supplies every week to Gaza. These ships could have offloaded their cargoes at a nearby Israeli port if they really wanted to help the people of Gaza. Instead, they chose to incite confrontation and violence. Israel has a right to prevent arms shipments to Gaza that will be used to target innocent Israelis, so they were legitimately checking the cargo on the flotilla. Turkey has chosen to condemn Israel but we should be asking some serious questions about Turkey’s role in this whole affair. Why is a fellow member of NATO sponsoring such a dangerous publicity stunt? As one expert points out: “Three ships of that six-ship pro-terror convoy flew Turkish flags and were crowded with Turkish citizens. The Ankara government – led by Islamists these days – sponsored the ‘aid’ operation in a move to position itself as the new champion of the Palestinians. And Turkish decision-makers knew Israel would have to react – and were waiting to exploit the inevitable clash. The provocation was as cynical as it was carefully orchestrated.”
We can only hope the Obama Administration does not join the anti-Israel chorus in the aftermath of this staged confrontation. Please, Mr. President, we need to let Israelis know we stand with them in their fight against terrorists and those who arm and support them. America and her ally, Israel, stand by waiting for your response.
- Sarah Palin
Yes, I am also waiting for BHO to call a spade a spade. We all know he doesn't like the word 'terrorist', but that IS what these people on the Mavi Marmara are. Of course, BHO may find himself in a bit of a corner here, since it is documented that people he 'met once or twice' are part of the backing for this group.
Klein: Ayers, Dohrn top activists in Gaza flotilla group
May 31, 2010 by Brenda J. ElliottBill Ayers, Bernardine Dohrn, Gaza, 12/31/09
Aaron Klein, Jerusalem bureau chief for World Net Daily, reports from New York:
The group behind the Gaza flotilla that engaged in deadly clashes with Israeli commandoes today counts among its top activists Weather Underground terrorist founders William Ayers and Bernadine Dohrn as well as Jodie Evans, the leader of the radical activist organization Code Pink.
Ayers and Dohrn were close associates for years with President Obama, while Evans was a fundraiser and financial bundler for Obama’s presidential campaign. ..
[...]The flotilla was organized by the Free Gaza Movement, a coalition of leftist human rights activists and pro-Palestinian groups engaged in attempts to break a blockade imposed by Israel on the Hamas-controlled Gaza Strip.
Ayers, Dohrn and Evans’ Code Pink have led several recent Free Gaza Movement initiatives, including attempted marches into the Gaza Strip. Dorhn was in the Middle East just last month on behalf of the movement.
In January, WND reported Ayers, Dohrn and Evans were involved in provoking chaos on the streets of Egypt in an attempt to enter Gaza with the Free Gaza Movement to join in solidarity with the territory’s population and leadership.
The three helped to stir riots after the Egyptian government refused to allow a large number of protesters to enter neighboring Gaza. Eventually, the protesters accepted an Egyptian offer of allowing about 100 marchers into Gaza. Once in the territory, those marchers were reportedly met on the Gaza side by Hamas’ former Prime Minister Ismail Haniyeh. (more here)
And others are taking notice, too:
FROM WND'S JERUSALEM BUREAU
All aboard! Obama pals back violent Gaza flotilla
Activists from president's circle of friends top supporters of anti-Israel protest ships
Posted: May 31, 2010
2:27 pm Eastern
By Aaron Klein
© 2010 WorldNetDaily
By Joel Leyden
Israel News Agency
Jerusalem ---- May 29, 2010 …. The "Gaza Freedom Flotilla", a group of ships carrying up to 800 people and 10,000 tons of supplies destined for the Gaza Strip has the alledged aim of stirring international debate regarding the humanitarian situation in Gaza. However, questions have been raised as to their motives especially given evidence of the organizer's direct ties to international terrorist organizations including al Qaida and Hamas.
Israel security sources have told the Israel News Agency that the main organization behind the "freedom" flotilla that is now sailing towards the Gaza Strip is called The Turkish Humanitarian Relief Foundation (IHH), a so-called "relief" organization from Turkey.
This is an organization unabashedly proud of its close ties to Hamas, a terror organization as recognized by the United States, Israel and the European Union (EU).
The Turkish Humanitarian Relief Foundation is openly supportive of Hamas, an organization that is widely seen as the one of the largest perpetrators of human rights violations, having violently seized control of the Gaza Strip, and committed immeasurable human rights violations against its own people, not to mention hundreds of terror attacks initiated targeting the citizens of Israel.
These aren't the only roles the IHH has played to support Islamic terror, as if this wasn't enough. In fact, not only is IHH linked to global Islamic terror organizations, but it is the direct supporter of not only terrorism against Israel, but a primary backer of world-wide terrorism against nations which practice democracy.
At the heart of many terrorist networks are so-called Islamic "relief" organizations have proven invaluable as sources of cash, weapons, and recruitment of terror operatives. So effective is their role in covering up terrorist activity from the international intelligence community under the guise of promoting humanitarian aid, that Osama bin Laden has admitted that these NGO "charities" have been al-Qaida primary source of funding and have enabled the build-up of his organization to fly under the radar.
Examples of Islamic organizations funneling funds to terror organizations masked as NGOs include: the Benevolence International Foundation, Global Relief Foundation, Taibah International Aid Association, all of whom and countless other have been shut down, banned and its leaders arrested by the US government.
The IHH is one of such organizations, a primary example of an NGO that functions as a "charitable" organization in order to divert resources to terror activity.
In a working paper for The Danish Institute for International Studies, an independent international affairs research institution of Denmark, terrorism analyst and expert witness for the prosecution in U.S. terrorism trials, Evan Kohlmann details IHH's extensive affiliation with the Islamic terror network, including: explicit ties to Hamas, al-Qaida, as well other militant Islamic organizations based in Algeria, Libya, Turkey.
It is odd that today Turkish Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan supports the IHH in their attempt to break the maritime closure of the Gaza Strip, and ranks the IHH's efforts as his "top priority" for the country.(More here)
'Questions have been raised'? IF the UN and all the other world leaders would actually pay attention, before condemning Israel out of hand, there would be NO question as to the real motives of these terrorists. Take a look at this video:
Much is being made in the msm of the Israelis attempting to board the Mavi Marmara in the middle of night, BUT not one peep from any that I have found about this 'humanitarian aid' vessel trying to creep into port under cover of dark. Double standard? Never mind, that was a rhetorical question.
As we all know, I am not a military strategist, but seems to me that with hundreds (700+?) of passengers on board, and what surely looks to me via the video, of not very many Israeli troops, it is apparent that the Israelis were not intent on starting a war in the thick of night. The video above clearly shows that the Israelis were offering to escort the Mavi Marmara into Ashdod. According to all I have read, they were offering to assess the contents of the cargo, and then offering to transport, at Israeli expense, any humanitarian aid to its destination.
I heard an interview with a friend of one of the Canadians on board one of the flotilla ships(not the Mavi Marmara as it turned out) who clearly stated that prior to leaving, it had been decided that any requests from the Israeli military to stop, so they could check the actual business and cargo, would be refused. On national radio, this woman said that they had no intention of co-operating with the Israeli military. 'Peace activists' indeed!
And then there is this:
Talking of the Canadians, Netanyahu happened to be in Canada when this all happened, and this is what the CBC is reporting:
Israelis on ship acted in self-defence: Netanyahu
UN holds emergency meeting on attack
Last Updated: Monday, May 31, 2010 | 10:56 PM ET
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu is defending Israeli commandos who launched a deadly raid on a flotilla of humanitarian ships destined for Gaza, saying they acted in self-defence.
Nine people were killed and dozens were wounded in Monday's pre-dawn raid, which happened in international waters more than 60 kilometres from shore.
Netanyahu said the Israeli soldiers had boarded one of six ships in the flotilla at about 4 a.m. local time to check it for weapons when they were attacked by activists with knives and clubs.
Night-vision footage released by the military showed soldiers dropping from a helicopter one by one and being grabbed by a mob of men wielding sticks on the lead boat, the Turkish-flagged Mavi Marmara.
The soldiers succumbed to the assailants and fell to the deck, where the men continued to beat them and dump one of them from the top deck.
"They literally attacked the first soldiers on the ship, they were mobbed," Netanyahu said in Ottawa, where he was meeting with Prime Minister Stephen Harper. "They were clubbed, they were beaten, stabbed, there was even a report of gunfire.
"And our soldiers had to defend themselves, defend their lives or they would have been killed," he said.
Israeli officials say at least five Israeli soldiers were wounded in the confrontation.[...]
Netanyahu, who began a two-day official visit to Canada on Sunday, cut short his visit and was expected to leave Ottawa for Israel Monday afternoon.
He also rescheduled a Tuesday meeting with U.S. President Barack Obama in Washington, officials said.
Israeli Deputy Foreign Affairs Minister Danny Ayalon said Israel regrets the loss of life but called the moves from the flotilla "premeditated" and an "outrageous provocation."
"The organizers are well known for their ties to global jihad, al-Qaeda and Hamas," he said. "On board the ship, we found weapons prepared in advance and used against our forces."
Helicopters evacuated the wounded to Israeli hospitals, officials said. Five ships had reached port by early evening, and some 136 activists had been removed without serious incident, the military said.
Sixteen were jailed for refusing to identify themselves, police spokesman Micky Rosenfeld said. Israel had said activists would be given the choice to be deported or imprisoned.
Ayalon said Israel offered to deliver the aid supplies through the "appropriate" channels, and did "everything" it could to avoid a violent outcome.
Israeli naval ships escorted the flotilla to the port of Ashdod, where officials were trying to identify the ships' passengers.
"Canada deeply regrets this action, the loss of life and the injuries that have occurred and obviously we'll be looking in the days that follow to get all the information we can get to find out exactly what has transpired," Harper said following a meeting with Netanyahu.
Read more here. CBC is running a poll asking Canadians if they approve of Harper's measured response. Predictably, a huge majority do not agree with what he said. Here (and yes, as always, the comments are interesting.) Oh, and there was an anti-Israel 'demonstration' downtown yesterday, where I live. About 100 people showed up, according to the msm.
Not everybody is swallowing the typical, anti-Israel propaganda. From Right Truth:
May 31, 2010
Arabs Try to Lynch Israeli Paint-Gun Commandos – Myths and Facts about the Israeli Naval Operation
Arabs Try to Lynch Israeli Paint-Gun Commandos – Myths and Facts about the Israeli Naval Operation
BY: YEKUTIEL GUZOFSKY
If it wasn't so sad it would make great material for a comedy. The Israeli government sends its most elite military unit - its navy seals - to overtake the Turkish terrorist supply ships as they penetrated into Israeli territorial waters with the stated intent of breaking the Israeli naval blockade around the terrorist Hamas entity that controls Gaza. That Israel sees it as a priority to continue blocking the free flow of weapons into Gaza is not the problem. However, the feeble tactics used by the Israeli government to enforce the blockade needs to be studied and never again duplicated. Did Israel use disproportionate and excessive force? The absolute opposite is true – Israel armed its fighters with toy paint-guns, and gave specific orders to all troops not to open fire with their pistols unless their lives were in danger. In fact, the poor soldiers refrained from shooting back until some of their comrades were already being lynched, shot at, firebombed and stabbed.[emphasis mine]The Israelis had spent tens of millions of shekels to set up hotel-suite jail cells, cake and coffee, and promised that they would not use unnecessary force to reroute the ships to the Ashdod port, where they would run a security check of all of the items and then transport the cargo, free of charge into Gaza. Israel also announced in advance that they would send all of the Turks and Europeans back to their countries of origin at Israel's expense. The European and Turkish Hamas sympathizers had two goals - to break through the blockade thereby easing present and future restrictions to transport and smuggle weapons freely into Gaza, and to embarrass Israel - knowing just how sensitive and obsessive Israel is about international public opinion. (Much more here)
Monkey in the Middle says this:
Tuesday, June 1, 2010Were just some of the weapons used upon
The Leaky BucketThe Free Gaza Flotilla.
Demonstrators Use Violence Against Israeli Navy Soldiers Attempting to Board Ship
Thus proving that this was NOT a peaceful protest but well-planned attack sponsored by the Turkish government who is now planning to escort all ships to Gaza.
Yet there is a truth that the members of the MSM will not tell you...
There follows more on the terrorist background of this 'peace activist' flotilla, here. Check out the official site of Free Gaza here. You may see a few names your recognise. Interesting to me, this group is now registered in Cyprus. But, while there, check out their live updates. They do have video with screaming headlines (of course) . From what I can make out, CNN and BBC were on board. Never let a good PR opportunity go to waste.
From Ynet News:
A brutal ambush at sea
Ron Ben Yishai recounts bloody clash aboard Gaza-bound vessel: The lacking crowd-dispersal means, the brutal violence of ‘peace activists,’ and the attempt to bring down an IDF helicopter
Troops beaten up after getting off helicopters Photo: AFP
Injured evacuated to hospitals Photo: Shai Vaknin
Paintball rifles inefficient Photo: AP
Published: 05.31.10, 15:44 / Israel News
Our Navy commandoes fell right into the hands of the Gaza mission members. A few minutes before the takeover attempt aboard the Marmara got underway, the operation commander was told that 20 people were waiting on the deck where a helicopter was to deploy the first team of the elite Flotilla 13 unit. The original plan was to disembark on the top deck, and from there rush to the vessel’s bridge and order the Marmara’s captain to stop.
Officials estimated that passengers will show slight resistance, and possibly minor violence; for that reason, the operation’s commander decided to bring the helicopter directly above the top deck. The first rope that soldiers used in order to descend down to the ship was wrested away by activists, most of them Turks, and tied to an antenna with the hopes of bringing the chopper down. However, Flotilla 13 fighters decided to carry on.
Navy commandoes slid down to the vessel one by one, yet then the unexpected occurred: The passengers that awaited them on the deck pulled out bats, clubs, and slingshots with glass marbles, assaulting each soldier as he disembarked. The fighters were nabbed one by one and were beaten up badly, yet they attempted to fight back.
However, to their misfortune, they were only equipped with paintball rifles used to disperse minor protests, such as the ones held in Bilin. The paintballs obviously made no impression on the activists, who kept on beating the troops up and even attempted to wrest away their weapons. (Much more here)
Be sure to click on the sidebar over there.
Not everybody is feeling sorry for the terrorists on board the Mavi Marmara. Over at Double Tapper, where I found the original weaponry (aka 'humanitarian aid'), a couple of comments are interesting:
Ya'll should have sunk all those asshole ships with the pro-Palestin crew chained to the railings.
God Bless the IDF May 31, 2010 11:30 PM
Good Work IDF. Take No Prisoners! (Here)
Another point of view, a thoughtful piece, out of Israel from Dan Illouz:
The events off the coast of Gaza in the early hours of Monday morning were a significant moment in the history of the State of Israel. More than that, they were a dual tragedy.
Before we go any further, it must be made abundantly clear that neither I nor anyone I know rejoices in the deaths of these activists. It is not in our nature to celebrate the deaths of anyone, not even those who were part of a group that had earlier chanted “Khaybar Khaybar ya yahud, Jaish Muhammad saya’ud,” meaning “Jews remember Khaybar, the army of Mohammed is returning,” a reference to a seventh-century Muslim massacre and expulsion of Jews from Khaybar, which is in modern-day Saudi Arabia. Despite this despicable loathsomeness, with the benefit of hindsight, I’d much rather that the ships had safely docked in Gaza than lives being needlessly wasted.
At the time of going to press, 15 people have died as a result of the IDF’s boarding the flotilla as it approached Gaza, but this does not mean that I criticize the actions of the IDF. Neither do I reserve criticism of the actions of these “human rights” activists.
But a serious question lies at the heart of the affair. How and why did a supposedly passive peace demonstration turn rowdy to the degree for the military forces who had boarded the boat to feel threatened enough to open fire? The answer has been stated repeatedly of the last few days and stares us in the face: these were no peace activists. These were no human rights activists, these people had a very clear agenda in mind: the delegitimization of Israel.
Much has been said of this delegitimization of Israel, but what is it? What is being delegitimized, exactly? Well, Israel’s right to defense, for one. When every single defense operation is questioned, criticized and consequently condemned, we would do well to realize that we are witnessing the systematic denial of Israel’s right to defend herself.
There’s one question I’ve asked myself repeatedly over the last few years: “And how would you handle it?” I’ve imagined this question being asked of Kofi Annan, Barack Obama, Gordon Brown and now I ask it of these activists and their supporters. Maybe Israel’s actions aren’t always correct, but Israel has the sovereign right to act in the way it deems fit. If you don’t like the way we deal with terrorists, how about proposing an alternative solution to prevent Hamas proliferating its stockpile of military grade weaponry? If you don’t like human shields, and you shouldn’t if you care about human rights, how do you propose that the IDF tackles Hamas, an extremist group bent on Israel’s destruction that also happens to make extensive use of this tactic?
While Marom correctly identified these “peace activists” as paradoxically unpleasant to deal with, even he could not have predicted that there would be those amongst their number who would attempt to steal the soldiers’ guns, let alone stab them. But that is precisely what occurred. For us to regard these people as genuine peace activists would be a real tragedy.
Gen. Maj. Marom explained that “we have no intention of harming any of these people”, but that was sadly not the case with the activists. Beyond physically hurting the soldiers, their intention to give Israel’s image a good hiding could not be clearer. We may call them pro-Palestinian activists, but that would be a fib, for they had plenty of other options available to them, but instead went for the cheap PR stunt. And yet the PR stunt is the one way that wins. Israel yet again emerges as the loser, it’s entitlement to protect its population damaged. [...]
But if Israel’s right to defend itself continues to be eroded, and if a precedent has been set here, more people will die. And that would be an even greater tragedy. (This is a must read here)
Within this column quoted, and within all I have read about the Israeli people, a glaring difference is always obvious between the Israeli people (and the rest of us), and the terrorists' regimes. The Israelis and non-terrorists always revere life more than death. The terrorists (under any of their myriad banners) always espouse ideologies that venerate death.
It may well be that some of the passengers in that flotillia (and there were other ships that peaceably acquiesced to the Israeli requests, and were safely led to harbour, by the way) who naively thought they were on a 'peace mission.' It is my opinion that they also need to educate themselves as to who their sponsors really are. Aligning oneself with terrorists whose only agenda is to wipe whole nations off the face of the earth, is absolutely no guarantee of peace - for any of us. These people would do well to remember the old cliche: You are known by the company you keep.
As for Israel? I stand with Israel.