Free Gaza flotilla subject to coordinated Israeli government media campaign & military action

According to an article in the Jerusalem Post [1] on May 25, 2010, the Israeli “Navy is preparing an operational plan to stop the flotilla of nine ships-loaded with hundreds of international activists and thousands of tons of supplies– which are scheduled to try and break the sea blockade on Gaza by anchoring in the newly-expanded port later this week.” The article describes a military campaign coordinated with a major media campaign. 

The web edition of the largest circulation paper in Israel, YNET News.com, reports that “Israel is also preparing for the media blitz certain to follow the flotilla, which many believe will harm the state’s [Israel's] already floundering reputation.” [2] According to the article, “Foreign Ministry, IDF, and PR spokespersons are preparing interviews for global news agencies in order to explain Israel’s position, mainly that the flotilla serves the terror organization ruling Gaza and not its residents.”

The 700 human rights workers on the nine boats of the International Freedom Flotilla come from 40 countries [3] and include 35 members of parliament from 15 different countries [4]. The humanitarian aid includes medical supplies, such as wheel chairs and medicine, toys for children, pencils, and building supplies, ranging from bags of cement to pre-fabricated homes. 

According to the Jerusalem Post article, in preparation for the military campaign the Israeli Defense Force “has established a joint taskforce together with the Israel Police, the Foreign Ministry and the Prisons Service to coordinate efforts to stop the flotilla and manage the potential media fallout.”

The Jerusalem Post article also describes the basic elements of the Israeli government media campaign, “to stress that the supplies the ships are carrying are unnecessary and that Israel – together with various international organizations – already transfers these supplies to Gaza via land crossings.”

The article then gives the Israeli government talking points of its media campaign: 

  • “Foreign Ministry spokesman Yigal Palmor said that existing land crossings were more than capable of meeting Gaza’s needs;” that “15,000 tons of supplies enter Gaza each week;” and that “building materials are allowed in when monitored by international organizations who ensure that the materials will not be commandeered by Hamas for the fortification of bunkers.”
  • Citing a story in the Financial Times, the article says that the 200 to 300 smuggling tunnels from Egypt into Gaza "have become so efficient that shops all over Gaza are bursting with goods."

Contradicting the Foreign Ministry spokesman, a United Nations report says the “Livelihoods and lives of people living in the Gaza Strip have been devastated by over 1000 days of near complete blockade.” [5] 

Also contradicting, a May 23, 2010 article on the Israeli YNET News.com, “UN says Gaza blockade hinders reconstruction aid,” [6] says “Most of the property and infrastructure damaged in Israel’s offensive on the Gaza Strip was still unrepaired 12 months later and aid efforts have been largely ineffective, a UN report said Sunday.” The article goes on to quote from a UN report that says "In view of the scale of the needs, international assistance in Gaza is tantamount to tinkering at the edges."

Also contradicting, a January 20, 2010 World Health Organization fact sheet [7] states that:

The lack of building materials is affecting essential health facilities: the new surgical wing in Gaza’s main Shifa hospital has remained unfinished since 2006. Hospitals and primary care facilities, damaged during operation ‘Cast Lead’, have not been rebuilt because construction materials are not allowed into Gaza. 

Furthermore, if tunnels are so efficient and food and building material so widely and cheaply available in Gaza as the Israeli government says, then the blockade is not working anyway. So why is Israel continuing the blockade, including threatening the flotilla? 

Palmer also charged that organizers of the flotilla “are less interested in bringing in aid than in promoting their radical agenda, playing into the hands of Hamas provocations.  While they have wrapped themselves in a humanitarian cloak, they are engaging in political propaganda and not in pro-Palestinian aid."
 
If it were true that the purpose of the human rights workers is to score political points why does the Israeli government play into their hands by engaging in a blockade that involves the illegal collective punishment of the entire civilian population of Gaza? Collective punishment puts Israeli government political and military leaders in breach of article 33 of the Fourth Geneva Convention [8].

Any attack on the ships of the International Freedom Flotilla could also put Israeli government officials in violation of several articles of the United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Part VII [9]:

  • article 87(a) provides for “freedom of navigation.”
  • article 88 states, "The high seas shall be reserved for peaceful purposes."
  • article 89 states, "No State may validly purport to subject any part of the high seas to its sovereignty."
  • article 90 states, "Every State, whether coastal or land-locked, has the right to sail ships flying its flag on the high seas"

By failing to defend the high seas from Israeli-government piracy other governments and the UN are acquiescing to degradation of international law regarding the freedom of navigation.

As Richard Falk, Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton University [10] said, “by now it has been demonstrated that neither governments nor the UN will challenge this blockade, only people of conscience and courage will.” Support demonstrations are taking place in cities around the world demanding action from the US government and the UN to defend free passage in international waters and to end the illegal siege of Gaza.

Readers can track the flotilla, click links to latest news, and find a list of emergency response plan actions that they can take at http://gazafreedommarch.org/cms/en/flotilla.aspx [11]

James Marc Leas is a Jewish patent lawyer who is a co-chair of the National Lawyers Guild Free Palestine Subcommittee. He participated in the NLG delegation to Gaza in February, 2009. [12]

____________________

[1] “Fate of Gaza flotilla remains vague,” Jerusalem Post, May 25, 2010. 

[2] “Gaza activists: Israel to put us in concentration camp,” YNET News.com, May 28, 2010

[3] “Israel’s Disinformation Campaign Against the Gaza Freedom Flotilla,” By Gaza Freedom Flotilla, May 28, 2010 

[4] http://gazafreedommarch.org/cms/en/flotilla.aspx
[5] “Farming without Land, Fishing without Water: Gaza Agriculture Sector Struggles to Survive,” UN Office for the Coordination of Humanitarian Affairs fact sheet, May 25, 2010 

[6]“UN says Gaza blockade hinders reconstruction aid,” YNET News.com, May 23, 2010 
[7] World Health Organization fact sheet, January 20, 2010 

[8]   Convention (IV) relative to the Protection of Civilian Persons in Time of War. Geneva, 12 August 1949, International Committee of the Red Cross

[9] United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Part VII

[10] Richard Falk, Professor Emeritus of International Law at Princeton University
[11] Gaza Freedom March, http://gazafreedommarch.org/cms/en/home.aspx
[12] “Onslaught, Israel’s attack on Gaza and the Rule of Law,” Report of the National Lawyers Guild delegation to Gaza in February 2009. 
 

About James Marc Leas

James Marc Leas is a past co-chair of the National Lawyers Guild Free Palestine Subcommittee. He collected evidence in the Gaza Strip from November 27 to December 3, 2012 as part of a 20 member delegation from the US and Europe and co-authored several articles describing findings. He also participated in the National Lawyers Guild delegation to Gaza after Operation Cast Lead in February 2009 and contributed to its report, Onslaught: Israel’s Attack on Gaza and the Rule of Law.
Posted in Israel/Palestine

{ 52 comments... read them below or add one }

  1. Palmer also charged that organizers of the flotilla “are less interested in bringing in aid than in promoting their radical agenda, playing into the hands of Hamas provocations. While they have wrapped themselves in a humanitarian cloak, they are engaging in political propaganda and not in pro-Palestinian aid.”

    I love when Hasbara propagandists argue that Israel is interested in the well being of the Palestinian people and that any actions to actually help the Palestinians is counter-productive to the well being of the Palestinian people.

    As if the party responsible for Palestinian dispossession knows whats best for the Palestinian people.

    • Walid says:

      Since it’s a foregone conclusion that the ships will not be docking in Gaza, the best we can hope for is that Israel doesn’t succeed at breaking up the 700 as was done in Cairo by the Egyptians in January and that every single one of the participants turns down the offer for a free plane ticket out of Israel and go straight to jail. If this were to happen, the result would truly break the siege. I’m wondering what’s on Erdogan’s mind at this point. As to the leaders of some neighbouring countries, they must be secretely rooting for the FGM to fail, as usual.

      • Chaos4700 says:

        Are you so sure? Letting the ships reach Gaza will shatter the siege, but bringing military force to bear on humanitarian aid ships in international waters might be even worse for Israel.

    • zamaaz says:

      [United Nations Convention on the Law of the Sea, Part VII [9]:

      * article 87(a) provides for “freedom of navigation.”
      * article 88 states, “The high seas shall be reserved for peaceful purposes.”
      * article 89 states, “No State may validly purport to subject any part of the high seas to its sovereignty.”
      * article 90 states, “Every State, whether coastal or land-locked, has the right to sail ships flying its flag on the high seas”]
      These provision of laws refer to the high seas… which Israel could have no objection; what is the crucial contention here is when the flotilla ships pass over the high seas and have entered the Israeli territorial jurisdiction…. This is were the reality comes in….

      • Shingo says:

        “what is the crucial contention here is when the flotilla ships pass over the high seas and have entered the Israeli territorial jurisdiction…. This is were the reality comes in….”

        Israel has no jurisdiction over the waters the flotilla will be entering you ignorant troll.  Israel’s claim that it does is meaningless becasue it is not recognized by any international laws.

        And no, you won’t find that in your fictional book you call the Bible.

        • Shingo says:

          By the way Zamaaz, both Yonira and Netenyahu think you are human scum.
          I couldn’t agree more. Your concern for Jews is about as sincere towardsaaa a pedophile’s concerns for children.

        • zamaaz says:

          [Israel has no jurisdiction over the waters the flotilla will be entering you ignorant troll. Israel’s claim that it does is meaningless because it is not recognized by any international laws.]

          [Gaza fell to British forces during World War I, becoming a part of the British Mandate of Palestine. As a result of the 1948 Arab-Israeli War, Egypt administered the newly-formed Gaza Strip territory and several improvements were undertaken in the city. Gaza was captured by Israel in the Six-Day War in 1967, but in 1993, the city was transferred to the Palestinian National Authority. Hamas took over the city in 2007 after months of clashes with its rival Fatah, and since then Gaza has been under a blockade by Israel. (Wikipedia)]

          Gaza by virtue of its capture in 1967 is subjugated and technically under the control by the Israel government. It was transferred to the PNA, but by virtue again of its hostilities against Israel and defeat to Israel in the Gaza 2008-09 War, it technically went back ‘under the occupation control’ of Israeli government (explaining its blockade).

          Likewise, with the view of the conduct of war the coastal waters around Gaza are territorial seas of Israel on various grounds: a) Gaza is technically recognized inside the territory of Israel (see Israel Map (wikipedia)); b) The declaration of independence and the recognition of Israel as an independent state recognizes its authority and domain over all the internationally recognized territory of Israel. c) there was yet no formal declaration of any peace nor armistice agreement between Gazans and Israel, thus d) Gaza has no sovereignty formally recognized by Israel its formerly ‘military occupant’ (relative to 1948 hostilities) and ‘effective political’ to control over its area (by virtue of Hamas political representation). The Gaza Palestinian ‘government’ remained deemed temporary and was not even supported by a formal declaration of armistice, and its ‘total political authority’ was voided by the fact of Gaza war (2008-2009) ) Such that without the formal declaration of peace between these people and Israel, the territorial designation of Gaza for Palestinians as well as the West Bank were merely temporary ‘provided’ by Israel in the exigency of peace. The nature of conflict and the state of belligerency can be considered as an effective extension of the Arab-Israeli war that occurred during the termination of the British Mandate in 1948. The military blockade of the Israelis (even if its land territory was included in the turnover to the PNA) is a manifestation of its ‘conventional’ authority of Israel over the land area of Gaza. (See Hague 1 and 2 Conventions )

          Under such arguments Gaza coastal waters are technically considered Territorial Seas of Israel under effective control and jurisdiction by the Israeli government. Any act of breaching this blockade is ‘aiding the enemies of Israel and technically subject to the war of attrition’.
          This breach now become a subject to the laws, traditions, or ‘customs of war’. Sadly the Geneva Conventions generally covered only on the treatment of people (soldiers, prisoners, civilians etc.) This aspect is mainly based on customs traditions and rationality of war. There was this Hague Convention of 1899 and 1907 (pertaining to the laws and customs of war in) but the application appeared outdated relative to the latest issues in modern warfare It is perhaps nations tried to avoid war as a formal non-verbal way of communication between nations.

          The are many keywords with regards to the Law of the Sea Convention;
          Baselines;
          High Seas;
          Territorial Sea;
          Inland Sea; and
          Right of Innocent Passage; and the
          Contiguous zone where in this extent any state can do arrest to any one that has violated its laws. (Convention on the Territorial Sea and The Contiguous Zone Geneva on 29 April 1958)
          These are legal complexities that may support he arrest of the involved activists…

        • zamaaz says:

          When I joined in this debate I joined as an individual not as a team… So that is not a problem what others think of me… besides I only rely on the validity of arguments not on the strength of personalities. I have no idea on the people you are dropping here, nor care whether they are famous Jews or not… My concern is solely to present my arguments…

        • zamaaz says:

          By the way, I do admire Witty, Yonira, Netanyahu, and similar others on their steadfastness in fighting intellectually for Israel…

        • zamaaz says:

          By the way, who’s Netanyahu do you refer?

        • zamaaz says:

          And also, in our culture men only marry damsels with age more than 23… Below than that (but not below 18 which is even morally questionable) one needs parental confirmation… Only the indigenous culture has the ancient practice of marrying younger ages but that was many many generations ago…

        • “By the way, who’s Netanyahu do you refer?”

          Ha ha ha..

        • Shingo says:

          2 of them think you’re human scum and 1 thinks of you as a useful idiot.

        • Shingo says:

          “but by virtue again of its hostilities against Israel and defeat to Israel in the Gaza 2008-09 War, it technically went back ‘under the occupation control’ of Israeli government (explaining its blockade). ”

          False. The UN nor any international law has made such a determination.

          Like Witth, you are an ignorant moron making things up as you go.

  2. robin says:

    It’s all so absurd.

  3. Avi says:

    While Israel could very well have launching such a massive campaign because of the flotilla’s size or the media angle, there could be another aspect to this affair.

    I get the sense that Israel is doing so in preparation for a confrontation with Turkey. Israel WANTS, desperately, to put Turkey – from Israel’s perspective – in its place. Israel wants to show Turkey who’s boss in the region. In essence, this is a power struggle by proxy. The flotilla, is Israel’s excuse. Israel wants to continue to exercise de facto control of Gaza’s land crossings, its airspace and maritime claims. The Oslo accords spell out specifically Gaza’s maritime claims, of which Israel is currently in violation. Incidentally, this is yet another example of how Israel unilaterally rendered the Oslo peace accords null and void.

    • RoHa says:

      “Israel wants to show Turkey who’s boss in the region. ”

      Risky. The boss might turn out to be Turkey.

      There is a report floating around in the Arab press that Turkey is providing air cover for the flotilla. Rumours and wishful thinking, I suspect, but Turkey will not take kindly to be “put in its place” by Israel.

    • I’m not convinced of Turkey’s sincerity and this being anything other than a public relations trick and more double-speak from another Mideast country’s leaders. When Turkey forgoes the military exercises it carries out with the IDF and gives up the lucrative deals for upgrading Merkava tanks as well as the labour contracts it has with Israel, then I will be persuaded.

      • RoHa says:

        You may be right. I never believe anything is going to happen until it has happened. And then I often don’t believe it did happen.

        Still, there are some indications that Turkey is serious about standing up to Israel.

        Turkey has forgone military exercises with Israel,

        link to guardian.co.uk

        and had joint exercises with Syria.

        link to jpost.com

        This same article says that the upgraded tanks have been handed over.

        Turkey has based missiles on the Syrian border to defend against Israeli incursions.

        And of course, Israel has been insulting the Turks.

        • Thanks for the updates. I would love to be wrong on this one. Trouble is having lived and worked in the region for many years, the hypocrisy of the Arab and other Mideast regimes vis a vis I/P becomes hard to stomach after a while.

        • RoHa says:

          I’d like you to be wrong, too. But on past form ….

        • zamaaz says:

          [Turkey has based missiles on the Syrian border to defend against Israeli incursions.]
          Israel basically rely on global sympathy regarding political and diplomatic issues being confronted… thus defensive stance is the best for Israel…

          [Turkey has forgone military exercises with Israel,]
          sometimes military exercises are show of alliance…but it does not mean Turkey would totally become strategically gullible by mere issue of religious or moral sympathies… But so far, these alliances showed Israel has no true friend but himself with the help of the Almighty to totally rely on…

        • Shingo says:

          “But so far, these alliances showed Israel has no true friend but himself with the help of the Almighty to totally rely on…”

          Along with the world’s biggest welfare cheques from the US, free weapons, and diplomatic support at the UN.

          Evanlical pedophiles like Zamaaz want so desperately to believe that evrything that happens is an act fo god.

      • I’m with you om this, miss. Turkey would do nothing. If everything fails they would argue “well, we tried” a la Obama..

        • Over sixty years of experience the Palestinians KNOW, when push comes to shove, there’s no one they can count on, friends or not friends. I just wish I’m wrong on this..

  4. RE: “The Jerusalem Post article also describes the basic elements of the Israeli government media campaign” – James Marc Leas

    MY QUESTION: Isn’t Alan Dershowitz currently in Israel?

  5. Eva Smagacz says:

    I read that three more vessels joined flotilla at the last minute, but can’t trace the original report.

  6. Shmuel says:

    EUROPEAN UNION Brussels, 28 May 2010

    Statement by the spokesperson of
    High Representative Catherine Ashton
    on the flotilla sailing to Gaza

    The spokesperson of High Representative of the Union for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy/Vice

    President of the Commission Catherine Ashton issued a following statement today:

    “We strongly urge that all involved act with a sense of restraint and responsibility and work for a

    constructive resolution. The EU remains gravely concerned by the humanitarian situation in Gaza.
    The continued policy of closure is unacceptable and politically counterproductive.

    We would like to reiterate the EU’s call for an immediate, sustained and unconditional opening of crossings for the flow of humanitarian aid, commercial goods and persons to and from Gaza.”

    • zamaaz says:

      [We would like to reiterate the EU’s call for an immediate, sustained and unconditional opening of crossings for the flow of humanitarian aid, commercial goods and persons to and from Gaza.”]
      I totally agree to this appeal, however, we also must consider the security interest of Israel which even the Hague Convention on land warfare provides… I could likewise be very productive the international community must allow Israel government to handle the appropriate manner of discharging the relief materials to the Palestinians in general…

      • Shmuel says:

        Z,

        Israel has rejected proposals that would have met its reasonable security needs, choosing instead to pursue a policy of “no development, no prosperity, no humanitarian crisis” – having destroyed civilian infrastructure, agriculture and industry in Gaza. Of course, Israel has never allowed development and prosperity in Gaza, although it has certainly fostered the current humanitarian crisis (observed and confirmed by numerous international bodies). Do have a look at the Gisha website, which clearly shows that the blockade is not about security.

        Your reference to Israel’s rights under international law as justification of its own violations of international law is beyond laughable.

        • Why not work to influence that choice now, rather than just disregard Israel’s concerns?

          As I’ve said many times, “Make the better argument, already”.

          Go past the vanity of dissent. Actually try to make change.

        • Julian says:

          What happened to those beautiful greenhouses Israel left in Gaza?
          Did Israel destroy them? They don’t seem to exist anymore.
          “reasonable security needs” I think after suffering almost daily terrorist attacks targeted at civilians, Israels view of reasonable and yours are probably vastly different.

        • Shingo says:

          “Go past the vanity of dissent. Actually try to make change.”

          Make praticsl suggestions as to how this is to be achived rather than writing ling diatribes about esoteric ideas.

        • Shingo says:

          “What happened to those beautiful greenhouses Israel left in Gaza?
          Did Israel destroy them?”

          Yes in fact they did.

          The one and only comprehensive scholarly history of Israeli settlementsi n the occupied territories, called “Lords of the Land”, by Idith Zertal and Akiva Eldar, describes it perfectly.

          “After Israel withdrew it’s forces from Gaza, in August 2005, the ruined territory was not released for even a single day from Israel’s military grip, or from the price of the occupation that the inhabitants pay every day. Israel left behind scotched earth, devastated services, and people with nearly a present or a future. The Jewish settlements were destroyed in an ungenerous move by an unenlightened occupier, which in fact continues to control the territory and kill and harass it’s inhabitants, by means of it’s formidable military might.

        • Shingo says:

          “Your reference to Israel’s rights under international law as justification of its own violations of international law is beyond laughable.”‘

          Zamaaz is a Envangical lunatic. You’re never going to see any post from him that isn’t beyond laughable.

        • Shmuel says:

          Helen Cobban on the immortal greenhouse talking point:

          … Basically, the story was that the greenhouses (for which the departing settlers received a $14 million payment from the American group) were handed over to the Palestinians in far worse shape than the Palestinians had been led to expect. The Palestinian Investment Fund then spent $30 million to get them up and running, and to grow the first crop and get it to market. But at that point– just after Hamas’s election victory– the Israelis closed the Karnei freight crossing and the entire crop– strawberries, peppers, cut flowers, etc etc– had to be trashed. (The other option would have been to dump it on the Palestinian market and depress prices for the many other existing Palestinian growers.)

          “The Palestinian took the greenhouses under pressure,” he said. “Originally they didn’t want to take them because they knew that they only point of this operation would be to raise export crops… The Palestinians didn’t need more greenhouses for their own domestic consumption– they already had 12,000 greenhouses for that. But they knew that exporting these products would always be something completely at the whim of Israel, because of the problem of access to the markets… Sadly they were proved right. But they lost a lot of Palestinian money trying to make it work.”

          A similar account, by Greg Myre, appeared in the NYT.

          And another report from the NYT on what really happened to those greenhouses.

        • MHughes976 says:

          Just to mention that I went to a talk in London where Zertal launched her book. I’m afraid I flinched at the price. But she made it clear, if I remember at all correctly, that she is a Zionist to whom a one-state solution is unacceptable – which adds credibility to her unflinching account of what is going on.
          At one stage she talked, in a rather long, slow sentence, about ‘the one who is father of us all’ and I thought for a minute she was going to say ‘God’. In fact she said ‘Ben-Gurion’.

        • Sumud says:

          “As I’ve said many times, “Make the better argument, already”.
          Go past the vanity of dissent. Actually try to make change.”

          Ha ha what a pathetic joke. You’ve outed yourself as a do-nothing faux-liberal. The Witty Plan would represent total capitulation to jews-only zionists such as yourself:

          link to mondoweiss.net

          Can you actually provide a shred of proof that the values you espouse have any relationship to liberalism?

        • Sumud says:

          Shmuel – link to Helena Cobban account which you quote:

          link to justworldnews.org

        • Shmuel says:

          As I’ve said many times, “Make the better argument, already”.
          Go past the vanity of dissent. Actually try to make change.

          LOL. Forgive me for not heeding your sage advice. BTW, is that a beam in your eye?

        • Shmuel says:

          Thanks, Sumud. Was in a hurry and just pasted in my comment from the last time this came up. Re-refuting the dog-returning-to-vomit talking points isn’t worth much time anyway. Quick search for last rebuttal, cutpaste and Bob’s yer uncle.

        • Shmuel says:

          MHughes,

          I find it hard to believe that Zertal seriously referred to BG as “the father of us all”. She must have been aiming for sarcasm (always risky in a language that is not your own). Her judgements of BG in Death and the Nation are scathing, to say the least.

          She may define herself as a Zionist, and be against one state, but I doubt that she opposes complete equality for Palestinians. Beyond her other writings, her identification with the subject of much of her research, Hannah Arendt, would seem to preclude such a position.

        • Sumud says:

          My pleasure Shmuel. I used to just search for links to articles each time but it’s time consuming – I’ve bookmarked a whole lot now so the links are handy. So much hasbara..!

          Wouldn’t it be nice if Israel adopted a less repugnant position and all it’s defenders could instead focus their energy on good stuff instead of spreading lies?

        • Shmuel says:

          Israels view of reasonable and yours are probably vastly different.

          You’re right. I’m not afraid of cumin or coriander.

        • MHughes976 says:

          Well, I was afraid that I was indeed misinterpreting something. Zertal did begin her remarks by saying that she wished that the conversation could have been in Hebrew.
          The 1-state idea was put to her and she replied with a pretty flat ‘No’; I presumed that she was on the generous (if that word can be used without irony after Barak/Clinton) end of the 2-statist spectrum.
          I don’t think I reported the reference to BG very well, though I still don’t think of it, with its hint of religious language, as simple meaning-reversed sarcasm. I felt that her remarks loaded with a rather sad irony and self-deprecation, which is rather what her presence and speaking manner in English also suggest. He was the corrupt but not utterly unloved father from whom the good daughter had accepted an inheritance.

  7. Judy says:

    The “greenhouse” talking point has the effect of creating the perception in the uninformed that Palestinians can’t grow their own food, and that generous Israel left them the ability to farm for themselves but that spiteful Palestinians spurned Israel’s helping hand.

    Gazans have been farming successfully for centuries, thank you very much.

    Julian should know better than to trot that bullshit out here.

  8. Sumud says:

    Hi Judy ~ I think it was you a while ago who was talking about a model of understanding for I/P being one of abuser/abused?

    TGIA posted a link a little while ago to a great radio interview with Israeli-born psycho-therapist Avigail Abarbanel. She analyses Israel as though it were one of her clients and specifically references abusive relationships as a model. I thought immediately thought of you!

    link to mondoweiss.net

  9. Sumud says:

    I wrote on another flotilla article that I thought it represented a sort of [non-violent] guerilla democratic activism, the direct outcome of the US veto at the UN, and the failure of UN member states to protect and enforce the rights of Palestinians.

    The blockade on Gaza continues, in direct defiance of UN SC 1860:

    “The Resolution called for “an immediate ceasefire in Gaza leading to a full Israeli withdrawal, unimpeded provision through Gaza of food, fuel and medical treatment, and intensified international arrangements to prevent arms and ammunition smuggling.” All members stressed the importance of an “immediate and durable ceasefire””
    link to en.wikipedia.org

    Meanwhile sofa-diplomat Danny Ayalon is sounding more and more like Dershowitz in his idiotic public statements on the flotilla:

    “There is no humanitarian crisis. At the Foreign Ministry we are making use of Youtube and Facebook to explain the situation. This is an Islamist and Hamasist event.””
    link to ynetnews.com

    Is Hamasist a word?

  10. When will the ships arrive?