Reports – 19 people killed, 30-60 injured in Israeli attack on freedom flotilla

Watch live streaming video from insaniyardim at livestream.com

The above video is a live feed of Turkish television from the flotilla. If anyone can translate the Turkish, please post any relevant news in the comments.

Follow #flotilla on twitter for the latest updates.

Update (12:45 am 5/31/10): Haaretz is reporting: "At least 10 activists killed as Israel Navy opens fire on Gaza aid flotilla." Al Jazeera’s Sherine Tadros just tweeted that Israeli Army Radio is saying "between 10-14 people killed on flotilla." These reports are all unconfirmed.

We have a number of reports from the Mediterranean in the last few hours that the Israeli government is following through on its self-destructive and brutal determination to stop the freedom flotilla, and doing so at night. Live feed shows people still on deck. Isabel Kershner of the Times says Israeli boats have approached in international waters, intending to intercept. AP says that the Israeli navy is "stalk"-ing the flotilla. (Great for the rebranding campaign, huh?) Emails, rumors, follow:

From Iara Lee: israeli navy is already coming toward us/ we are still in intl waters and they are already here/ women are instructed to go downstairs/ men have gas masks and i am not sure what they are instructed to do….

From a friend of the flotilla: I was just told by Audrey, a spokesperson, that Israel told the captain that they’re expanding Israel’s territorial waters to 68 miles. The boats are at 70 right now with helicopters flying around. I think it’s going to be very difficult to get timely and accurate news at this point. Hope I’m wrong.

From Felice: The White House is directing callers to contact the State Department main switchboard and ask for the duty officer responsible for dealing with imminent threats of abduction of American citizens. Please call the State Department as well. 202-647-4000. You can remind them that American citizens are being attacked with American military aid given to Israel and tell them they have ample influence with Israel to keep the flotilla safe.

From Lubna, on board, to Greta

Urgent we have threat from israel (check out the HELP button on www.witnessgaza.com)

What is happening?

Lubna: two israeli ships coming toward us me…. they contact the ship asked who we are and disappeared, now they getting close to the ship we can see them stay here 3 boats are coming not two 3 israeli boats we are 78 mile from israel

people here put on their life jackets, every body preparing here

we didnt expect them now, we thought they will arrive at the morning. 

Posted in Gaza

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

  1. Seham says:

    Ayalon just said that the people on the flotilla were known Al Qaida supporters. I grew up hearing about this wonderful Zionist propaganda machine but since I have been politically aware (10 years or so) the hasbara machine has just been plain silly. Someone make me some popcorn.

  2. -Israel begins hasbara campaign to justify #flotilla massacre, claims were fired on link to bit.ly about 2 hours ago

  3. cogit8 says:

    Danny (why do Jews so like their baby names?) Ayalon: “there were weapons on board the boats”

    Mr Ayalon: Anyone travelling on the high seas has the right to carry weapons for self-defense, and I do hope that some of the moneys I contributed to the Gaza Flotilla were used for that purpose.

  4. homingpigeon says:

    The BBC announcer just acted like an Arschloch and I emailed the following to BBC:

    At approximately 0815 UTC the gentleman presenter interviewed an American woman (not shown) about the recent events with the Gaza flotilla. In fact he did not conduct an interview her or try to get information but chose to harass and insult her verbally and quibble with her about the whole concept of the flotilla and whether they were responsible for the tragedy. Do you go to the victim of a mugging while she is still in shock and harass her about what she might have done to provoke it? Please review the tape and let me know if you feel this was appropriate or professional.

    • Shingo says:

      ” – Israel has just announced that it will prosecute the convoy members who “attacked” its soldiers … 11 minutes ago”

      What are the odds that they’ll just happen to be the eye witnesses to Israel’s attack?

      “- Unconfirmed: Arabic language tweets claiming that Turkey has expelled the Israeli ambassador in response to the attack.. ”

      A good start. The US should do the same as should every European country.  Turkey should sent a naval fleet to Gaza with the humanitarian aid this time.  let’s see if Erdogan has any balls.

      • “let’s see if Erdogan has any balls.”

        His balls are in Chile for the time being.

        • Shingo says:

          ” If I knew I’d tell you.  If this thing was “Planned out” in advance then whoever did it would know there would be video cameras rolling.  One would think so, anyway.”

          You’re such a pathetic slime ball.  Israel had done this  to dozens of boats and ships, so the flotilla came prepared with cameras to record the event.  pretty soon you will see the footage of Israeli navy thugs repellign onto the boats while the fellow thugs sprayed the boat with bullets.
           
          “Unlike the Mondoweiss blog, I didn’t make an accusation.”

          No, just accusatino about anyone not on Israel’s side.  You just  assumed teh video woudl be blocked you facist little prick.

  5. AbuNimah tweets:
    -A veteran of the South African liberation struggle just wrote to me “This is their Sharpeville”… about 1 hour ago
    –This Zionist crime will enter history with the bombing of the King David Hotel, murder of Count Bernadotte, Deir Yassin… about 2 hours ago
    - Hasbara plan: Israel military censor blocking all real reporting while IDF puts its version out unchallenged. about 2 hours ago

  6. FROM THE GUARDIAN NEWS BLOG: “ABC News [Australian Broadcasting Corporation] is reporting that two Australians who were travelling on one of the aid boats have not been heard from since they were boarded.
    The journalist Paul McGeough and photographer Kate Geraghty have apparently not made contact with Fairfax, the Australian media company, in the last six hours….”
    SOURCE – link to guardian.co.uk

    • Thanks Dickerson. I was following McGough’s updates but it all stopped now.

      _ PM Haniyeh: Govt calls for complete general strike in West Bank and Gaza Strip in protest and solidarity at #flotilla attack. about 2 hours ago via web

      • Shingo says:

        “Govt calls for complete general strike in West Bank and Gaza Strip in protest and solidarity at #flotilla attack”

        It looks like Israel just gave the BDS movement a massive push.

        Another own goal by the shorty Levantine state.

    • Shingo says:

      “The journalist Paul McGeough and photographer Kate Geraghty have apparently not made contact with Fairfax, the Australian media company, in the last six hours….””

      That will go down well after the recent eviction of an Israeli diplomat over the Dubai passports scandal. Israel gives a master class in how to win friends and influence people.

  7. jonah says:

    We hear already the outcry of the Israel-haters. By rejecting Israel’s offer to deliver the humanitarian aid by land through the Ashdot port, the tragic outcome was taken into account (maybe even provoked by troublemakers) and serves the purpose of the ongoing media and diplomatic war against Israel. It’s a cynical recurrent pattern.

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Buzz off, you filthy murdering ZioNazi. Israel just committed an atrocity in international waters against unarmed civilians.

      Maybe you child-killing monsters can get away with that in the Occupied Territories, but you just declared war on the whole fucking world.

      Game over.

      • From now on we should be expecting more than this piece of jonah shit to hit the blogs in order to deflect from the flotilla massacre’s disastrous PR. Full scale assault from the unscrupulous hasbara brigade..

    • Shingo says:

      “We hear already the outcry of the Israel-haters.”

      Right Jonah, how dare we not  love Israel for massacring 20 unarmed passengers. 

      I mean, it’s not like any of them were Jewish right Jonah, so no harm no foul right you imbecile!!

      Get it through your fat ugly skull you Zionazi, the Israelis attacked in international waters.  You know what that means?  It was an act fo piracy. Get it?

      Israel are acting live Nazis.  Worse than Nazis and all you can think of is how bad this makes Israel look.  You’re a God damn moron.

    • Setanta says:

      You’re damned right I hate Israel, you motherless Nazi fuckworm. Your einsatzkommandos just murdered civilians on a peaceful mission, and you’re just another despicable Ziocreep here to justify it. That’s the only cynical recurring theme here. Cheerlead all you want for your renegade pirate homeland, then go die in a fire. Take your Zionist bullshit with you.

    • “Israel-haters”

      Jonah: Mommy, mommy! Why do they hate me?

    • sherbrsi says:

      Take a good look at yourself here you creep.

      From here on the term Zionazi will no longer be a fringe description but the rallying cry against your murderous ilk.

    • potsherd says:

      A lot more Israel-haters today.

    • Aref says:

      Yes I hate Israel because it is a racist settler colonialist state founded by a hateful and racist ideology. Yes I hate Israel because of its murderous policies and its actions and history written in the blood of the innocents massacred in cold blood.
      Yes I hate Israel because of people like you cheering, justifying and condoning murder.

    • Mooser says:

      “We hear already the outcry of the Israel-haters.

      Gosh, Jonah, what happened to Jew-haters? That used to be good enough for you, except that, whoops, the Israelis have gotten so bad that not even you dare to associate them with the Jews.

  8. The delicious Mark Regev has just declared on the ABC that those were violent individuals who attacked the soldiers who were only defending themselves. I wanted to smash the TV but then I thought it’s not really it’s fault.

  9. Shmuel says:

    I’m afraid I don’t have time to read through the comments to see if this news has been posted already, but it seems that Raed Saleh is ok.

    The Israeli alibi is very confused. Dep. Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon says that weapons were found on board, and military spokesmen are talking about a “planned lynch against the soldiers”. According to Yediot however, the only weapons found were IDF weapons grabbed from the soldiers.

    • The dust is slowly settling and the truth is about to unfold, naked..20 people mostly murdered in their sleep.

      • Shingo says:

        “The dust is slowly settling and the truth is about to unfold, naked..20 people mostly murdered in their sleep.”

        That’s how Israel treats it’s friends (Turks), imagine how it treats it’s enemies?

    • Shmuel says:

      The infamous “iron bars” supposedly used against the defenceless soldiers have also morphed into vague “clubs” in Yediot, but the “knives” have become “long knives”.

      • Shmuel says:

        In Haaretz, the “iron bars” have become “sticks”.

      • MRW says:

        “Long knives,” indeed. You mean, like swords? Like Zorro?

        Hey, we can kill two birds with one stone here. Since American right-wing Pro-Israel extremists are behind the the anti-Mexican-immigration movement — which those dumb white retirees in Arizona know nothing about about — maybe Israel can blame this on Mexican nationalists while they’re at it.

    • Shingo says:

      “The Israeli alibi is very confused.  Dep. Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon says that weapons were found on board, and military spokesmen are talking about a “planned lynch against the soldiers”.  According to Yediot however, the only weapons found were IDF weapons grabbed from the soldiers.”

      That glaring contradiction stood out to me immediately.  If they had weapons, why did they bother wrestling them from the Israeli Navy thugs?

      Once the video of the Israelis repelling under cover fo gun fire is released on Youtube, Israel will never ever be believed again.

      • Setanta says:

        Gotta love that word. Lynch. I bet it’s the same in Hebrew, as it’s based on a real person. Lot’s of connotation there: mob, vigilantes, innocent victims, frontier justice, images of Israeli soldiers dangling from ropes.

        I bet they seriously considered calling it a pogrom, but thought that might be over the top even for Israel. “Our soldiers were defending themselves from a lynch mob” sounds like an easier sell than “our soldiers were defending against a pogrom.”

        The set up for this was obvious, with Israel claiming they needed to inspect if there were weapons on board. They were making their excuse in advance. Lo and behold, weapons magically appeared in the hands of the victims–iron bars and knives. No doubt they shouted “Allahu Akhbar!” before launching their banzai charge and the poor soldiers had no choice but to gun down dozens of people, which Israel deeply, deeply regrets.

  10. Seham says:

    Shmuel, where did you read that? Maan just published that he was shot in the head.

    link to maannews.net

    • Shmuel says:

      Seham,

      Both Maariv and Yediot are reporting that Saleh was only injured lightly and is on a boat on his way to Ashdod.

      • Chaos4700 says:

        Kind of hard to know who to believe. Certainly the Israeli sources (assuming that’s what Maariv and Yediot are) are closer to the event as far as proximity goes, but how trustworthy is the reportage if its merely reprints of Israeli press releases?

        • Shmuel says:

          That’s a good question, Chaos. The Israeli papers are quoting the army, and it may very well be intentional disinformation to try to calm things down among Palestinian Israelis.

        • Homer says:

          Chaos, if you are believing the IDF press reports (which Israeli newspapers, under military censorship, have no choice but to accept), then I have a stretch of tidal marsh in the Mississippi Delta I would like to sell you.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Homer, I was kind of hoping that my finding the IDF press reports to be complete and utter bullshit was a foregone conclusion, at this point.

        • Homer says:

          Sorry if I misread you, Chaos. I’m feeling oddly shell-shocked (as well as outraged, impotent, ashamed …) right now, even as I sit safely in my own home.

        • sherbrsi says:

          I know what you are saying.

          The last time I checked it was reported that the IDF was planning to send divers to sabotage the ship.

          Now and I come here and read that the damn fuckers actually full on attacked and kill these people.

          There’s no doubt about it that Israel has completed its descent into fascism.

      • Shmuel says:

        In the meantime, a general strike has been declared for tomorrow in Palestinian towns in Israel, where there will be protests and marches.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Wonder how many will turn up dead from IDF bullets in those…

        • Shmuel says:

          Don’t even say that Chaos. The situation is very frightening, but there is still a chance that some sort of good sense will prevail, and the Israeli police will stay away from the Palestinian demos and if they absolutely can’t help themselves, use non-lethal riot-control methods.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          I think it needs to be said, and I’m not being flippant.

          I think we know where the Israeli government plans to take this, now. Let’s not mince words.

        • Shmuel says:

          I didn’t think you were being flippant, Chaos. i was just trying to keep my hopes up. I am very afraid.

        • Chaos4700 says:

          I wish I could be afraid. But I am filled with mostly anger and sorrow, and little else right now.

          Maybe I should shut up for a while.

        • MRW says:

          Thanks for the translations, Shmuel.

        • Shmuel says:

          Thanks to everybody taking the time to post info here.

  11. Seham says:

    The Al Jazeera reporter from Jordan sounds like she is going to start to cry.

  12. azythos says:

    Turkish TV (on the IHH streaming channel):

    - Israeli ambassador was called to Foreign Ministry, told that Turkey will hold Israel responsible for whatever happened to every Turkish national in international waters and reserves all its rights to react as deserved; requests that all wounded be sent back to Turkey ASAP for treatment; ship should be returned safely to Turkey ASAP

    - Security forces are in place to prevent any act that could be interpreted or misinterpreted as “antisemitic”

    - The crowd before the house of the Israeli consul in Istanbul is moving downtown, snowballing fast. There is a sense of huge outrage across the city. It is reported that the crowd stopped to chant slogans when passing businesses that are or are believed to be Jewish-owned. Right now, several thousand people are already in the central square. Large demonstrations are reported to be taking place in most cities.

    - Ex-foreign minister bluntly stated that Ahalon is shamelessly lying both to international and to Israeli opinion. The Government has formed a crisis unit. In the initial Foreign Ministry statement one sees a sentence about “irreversible deterioration” of the relations with Israel

    - The Turkish Jewish community is said to have issued a statement firmly condemning Israel for its illegal aggressionin international waters (as per a party leader speaking on TV now)

    - Greece, Spain and Sweden are recalling their ambassadors from Israel

    • Shingo says:

      “- Israeli ambassador was called to Foreign Ministry, told that Turkey will hold Israel responsible for whatever happened to every Turkish national in international waters and reserves all its rights to react as deserved; requests that all wounded be sent back to Turkey ASAP for treatment; ship should be returned safely to Turkey ASAP”

      Now that’s what I’m talking about!!  If Israel refuse on the ground that these Turks are being charged with attacking  Israel, then that till spiral into a diplomatic tidal wave.

      ” – The crowd before the house of the Israeli consul in Istanbul is moving downtown, snowballing fast. There is a sense of huge outrage across the city.”

      Wesome.  Let’s hope Egypt and Jordan follows suit.

      “- Ex-foreign minister bluntly stated that Ahalon is shamelessly lying both to international and to Israeli opinion.”

      Great to hear spokesman not pulling punches!!

      “The Government has formed a crisis unit. In the initial Foreign Ministry statement one sees a sentence about “irreversible deterioration” of the relations with Israel”

      Awesome.  A great start.
       
      “The Turkish Jewish community is said to have issued a statement firmly condemning Israel for its illegal aggressionin international waters (as per a party leader speaking on TV now)”

      Good for them.  Let’s hope that they don’ suffer from any personal attacks.
       
      “- Greece, Spain and Sweden are recalling their ambassadors from Israel”

      Brilliant stuff.

      The tidal  wave has begun. Thsi wil make it impossible for Obama to ignore, especialyl the US media.

      Thanks so much azythos.

    • RoHa says:

      The Turkish people really do seem a mite pissed off about this. If the Government wants to be re-elected, they are going to have to take a Firm Line.

      • Chaos4700 says:

        I don’t think that’s going to be an issue. Erdogan was already taking a firm line against Israeli policy before this atrocity.

    • MRW says:

      Thank you for these translations, azythos. REALLY appreciated.

  13. Seham says:

    Also Al Jazeera is reporting that Saleh is having surgery and that he has been shot in the head…

  14. AreaMan says:

    The US has both a Coast Guard and a Navy. The Coast Guard is more like the police — they’re trained to ask and inspect. The Navy is generally trained to fight. Israel, 50 times smaller than the US, apparently has only a Navy. Israel would do better to have some sort of Sea Police or Coast Guard rather than have the Navy do this sort of thing. Of course, it wouldn’t have much to do for years on end…

    • Chaos4700 says:

      Especially now. I don’t see Israel getting a whole lot of commerce over international waters in the foreseeable future.

      You can’t “unkill” unarmed civilians. This was a deliberate slaughter in international waters. Zionism has been put on display as the filthy corrupt murderous extremist threat to global peace and security that it is.

    • azythos says:

      Do not try to confuse people with bullshit.
      Israel is acting exactly as the Nazis used to, no matter if with Coast Guard or Navy or trained racoons. Go back to your Propaganda-Abteilung.

    • Shingo says:

      “Israel would do better to have some sort of Sea Police or Coast Guard rather than have the Navy do this sort of thing.  Of course, it wouldn’t have much to do for years on end…”

      Go to hell Areaman, you fascist little cretin.

      A Coast Guard only has juridical in national waters.  This piracy took place in international waters.

  15. Homer says:

    Israel has demonstrated once again that it is a monster regime. It’s only a matter of time before it self-destructs in its own sordid iniquity. When that day finally comes, few will care.

  16. cogit8 says:

    Press Release from Gush Shalom 05/31/2010

    Uri Avnery: this night a crime was perpetrated in the middle of the sea, by order of the government of Israel and the IDF Command
    A warlike attack against aid ships and deadly shooting at peace and humanitarian aid activists
    It is a crazy thing that only a government that crossed all red lines can do

    “Only a crazy government that has lost all restraint and all connection to reality could something like that – consider ships carrying humanitarian aid and peace activists from around the world as an enemy and send massive military force to international waters to attack them, shoot and kill.

    “Noone in the world will believe the lies and excuses which the government and army spokesmen come up with,” said former Knesset member Uri Avnery of the Gush Shalom movement. Gush Shalom activists together with activists of other organizations are to depart at 11:00 from Tel Aviv to protest in front of the prepared detention facility where the international peace activists will be brought.

    • sherbrsi says:

      “Only a crazy government that has lost all restraint and all connection to reality could something like that – consider ships carrying humanitarian aid and peace activists from around the world as an enemy and send massive military force to international waters to attack them, shoot and kill.

      Is that all Avnery could come up with?

      This is nothing short of international terrorism on Israel’s part.

      What this Hasbara bot posing as a peace group is doing is nothing better than the Ayalons and Regevs spouting nonsense justifying the massacre.

      • Shingo says:

        “Is that all Avnery could come up with?”

        I think Avbery was pretty much on the mark. He’s a journalist and he pulls no punches.

        • sherbrsi says:

          I’m not fully convinced of Avnery’s sincerity.

          His call for Israel to cease its interception of the flotilla was similarly plastered with concern first and foremost that Israel would only be empowering Palestinian solidarity and ruining its own reputation in the process. That’s how he started his appeal.

          I would imagine that those actually concerned for the Palestinian people and the impoverished Gazan population are opposing the blockade and its in statement out of the outrage of a people being systematically denied of their basic necessities, rather than because it makes Israel “look bad.”

        • Shingo says:

          I takr your point but not only is there plenty fo good stuff in the article, but Avnery’s track record is pretty cound and consistent.

  17. jonah says:

    If some of the activists were bearing weapons, as reported in the media, the violent outcome of the action was predictable, maybe even wanted. Humanitarian aid has nothing to do with violent provocations.

    • Shingo says:

      “If some of the activists were bearing weapons, as reported in the media, the violent outcome of the action was predictable, maybe even wanted.”

      And if they didn’t have weapons would you be honest enough to admit Israel acted like fascist thugs?

      Go drown yourself you fascist little creep.  You don’t even have he balls to go and live in Israel because you know like the rest of us what a sad little apartheid state it is.

      Maybe you need to go off and entertain yourself over some Zionist snuff porn.

    • RoHa says:

      Sure. They know that Israelis are trigger-happy murderous buggers, so they decide to shake a stick at them.

    • azythos says:

      Moron. I mean it, it’s the most charitable of the two possible interpretations of what you are doing.

      Ever heard the phrase “International Waters?” No? Try “Law”, then. The Israeli were armed attackers. Killing them while they shot and stormed the ship was the right of anyone on the ship because this was an open act of piracy. Ask any lawyer. Besides, they were not armed –look it up. Also, watch it live on TV.

    • Chaos4700 says:

      The spin isn’t going to fly. The Israelis had no business boarding that ship, and none of us buys any of this bullshit that the activists somehow provoked this.

      Israel could have let those ships sail to Gaza. The only thing Israel would have lost was the capacity to starve an imprisoned population.

  18. Homer says:

    This incident has proven once again that the American media are Israeli-occupied territory. Notice how they all rush to promulgate the Israeli lies, so carefully concocted in advance.

    You can bet that Israel’s cowardly attack was coordinated with Rahm Emanuel.

  19. MRW says:

    19 reported dead by Israeli radio.

  20. cogit8 says:

    What are the boundaries of the territorial waters of Gaza? What right does Israel have to claim all the waters of the Mediterranean around Gaza?

  21. kalithea says:

    CNN referred to protesters in Turkey as “fringe” people! Fringe people?
    I think I’ll be sick now at the revolting bias.

    This is total barbaric insanity. These people were killed in International waters. Israeli officials need to be arrested and hauled off to the International Criminal Court! Bastards!

    • Sumud says:

      The slimeball MFA spokesman Yigor Palman was interviewed just now on Australian TV and he describes the flotilla participants are “militants”.

      So far Israel has dominated the mainstream media but it’s only because all the witnesses are silenced in Israeli custody. There are LOTS of journalists on board and their stories will be told son enough.

      Diplomatic withdrawals are going on left right and centre – did that even occur during the Gaza Massacre? There’s sure to be an investigation, I also heard Turkey and/or Syria are trying to get an emergency meeting of the Security Council convened.

      What a huge friggin mess.

      • Sumud says:

        Correction:

        “There are LOTS of journalists on board *and 35 Parliamentarians from around the world* and their stories will be told soon enough – and carry significant credibility.”

      • “The slimeball MFA spokesman Yigor Palman was interviewed ”

        I saw that. He clearly accused the Turkish IHH of being a terrorist organisation but Kerry O’Brian didn’t quite let him peddle his shit for long. Here’s the transcript:
        link to abc.net.au

        • Cliff says:

          KERRY O’BRIEN: I’m not sure that the highly experienced Middle East correspondent from the Sydney Morning Herald Paul McGeough could be described as a “useful idiot”. I can’t speak for the others, …

          YIGAL PALMOR: I’m referring to the journalists. I’m referring to the activists.

          KERRY O’BRIEN: … but I imagine that amongst – I imagine amongst the hundreds there would have been many that weren’t useful idiots. But there’s been an avalanche of international protest at Israel’s action. There’s – this one from the French Foreign Minister sums it up. He said, “Nothing can justify the use of such violence, which we condemn. We do not understand the human toll of such an operation against a humanitarian initiative that has been known for several days.” Now presumably the French Foreign Minister is not naive in these matters, so there is an enormous cavalcade of international outrage expressed at Israel’s actions. Once again, you find yourself condemned by – including people, some of whom you would count as your friends.

          YIGAL PALMOR: Yes, that is a fact, that is a fact and it’s very easy to condemn based on what you see on TV. But when rioters are coming your way and they are determined to break everything, to spread, to wreak havoc everywhere, what do you do? Do you let them do that or you send riot police? Now riot police don’t look good on TV and they will always be condemned, right? They never look good on TV. But you have to stop the rioters, and these people …

          KERRY O’BRIEN: Well particularly if you have a death toll of 15 or more.

          YIGAL PALMOR: Absolutely, absolutely, I agree, but there was no other choice. These people said they were carrying humanitarian aid. Why were they not co-ordinating this with the UN or with the Palestinian Government? They refused to co-ordinate this with anyone who was relevant. Not Israel, granted, not Egypt, not the UN, not the Palestinian Government. Was this really about humanitarian aid? Well, the head of the IHH said just before the sail went – was set off that the real purpose was not the humanitarian aid but to break the blockade, so to seek confrontation. So this is not about humanitarian aid. This was about a confrontation between an Islamist armed group in assistance of another group.

          KERRY O’BRIEN: There is of course the whole other question about whether you really do have international law at your disposal, but that’s a debate we’re going to have to hear over the days to come. We’re out of time now. Thankyou very much for joining us, Yigal Palmor. Thankyou.

          YIGAL PALMOR: Thankyou. Thankyou.

          Listen the Zio squirm. I was expecting “Holocaust” somewhere in there but he controlled himself a bit.

        • Sumud says:

          TGIA ~ KOB did do a pretty good job. Were you here for the last few hours? Do you know what happened to all the comments? 80% have been deleted.

        • Sumud says:

          Ugh – Tzipi Livni’s going to be interviewed tonight on Lateline. [Host] Leigh Sales bites hard if she feels justified..

        • Sumud says:

          TGIA are you watching Q & A? Gaza is first topic, great. I’ve never seen Israel discussed seriously on Q & A.

  22. MRW says:

    The White House Comment Line:
    1-202-456-1111

  23. cogit8 says:

    Mark Regev can’t wait until the complicit American media wakes up to give him a hand shovelling his shit. And so far CNN has buried the story real well while they cook up tomorrow’s crap coverage.

  24. azythos says:

    More:

    From the Turkish newspaper BirGün:

    - No news from two German Members of Parliament who were aboard the Mavi Marmara

    - The situation of four Turkish citizens at least is critical. Transported to the Hadassah Hospital

    - The more seriously wounded seemed to have shot wounds to the head and neck. They were all manacled!

    - The dead seem to be definitely more than ten, more like 16 or 20. Nine are Turks as confirmed by Al Jazeera

    - Also confirmed: A white flag was hoisted by the Turks before the first Israeli touched the ship. They started firing regardless

    - Israel said to have imposed military censorship on all news relative to the piracy, the ships and their passengers

  25. eGuard says:

    A good video report at worldbulletin. Skip the pictures, first video (8:42 min). From the M.M. deck. Heli hovering and dropping commandos. Series of shots heard from 4:40 – 7:45. Comments in English and Turkish.

    • MRW says:

      Thanks, eGuard. I’ve preserved the videos in the event they disappear.

    • eGuard says:

      Shot count:
      4:40 8x
      4:51 9x
      5:05 9x
      5:20 3x
      6:32 1x
      7:45 1x
      Also mentioning of cannisters (tear gas?), plus gas masks usage visible. The heli’s visible are probably not Apaches (which do not transport troops). Don’t know if image or sound is continuous. Shots of zodiacs say time 04:?? h (UTC or local?).

  26. Shmuel says:

    The EU and the French government have demanded an investigation. Israeli ambassadors have been summoned for clarifications by the governments of Turkey, Greece, Spain and Sweden. The only government supporting Israel’s position at this point is the government of Italy (in a shameful statement by the deputy foreign minister, although the Italian FM has generically condemned “all violence against civilians”).

  27. Don’t laugh, it’s serious:
    Israel says al-Qaeda was related to the Gaza flotilla
    Deputy Foreign Minister Danny Ayalon said earlier Monday that the organizers of the Gaza aid flotilla have connections to international terrorist organizations such as Hamas and Al-Qaida, and called the aid convoy a violent and provocative attempt to break the blockade on Gaza.
    link to haaretz.com

    • MRW says:

      I saw this piece of shit on Al-Jazeera reading his statement. Surprised he didn’t talk about some schmuck who occupied an apartment in 562 BC as proof.

  28. kalithea says:

    If 10-20 Israelis had been killed in International waters STOP THE PRESSES, there would be pandemonium, the mainstream would be running this story 24/7, big front page headlines in every paper in the country: CRIME ON THE HIGH SEAS! INNOCENT ISRAELIS MURDERED!

    10- 20 people were just been MURDERED in International waters, 30-60 people injured and CNN was doing a piece on LIONEL RITCHIE????

    GIMME A BREAK ALREADY!………..It’s called Bias Incorporated NOT Cable News Network!

  29. 1:30 pm Med time, 6:30pm local time. Have just resumed vigil after long afternoon nap and reading above thread.

    Can anyone translate the sporadic sound fragments still being broadcast on: link to livestream.com

    There are some strange messages in English, Turkish and Arabic, any of which could be made into something with a bit of knowledge of the lanuage

    This is what seems to have happened:
    - Israeli commandos abseiled to the top deck (roof) of the Mavi Marmara ferry around 6am, causing some damage and injuries, if not death. The ship’s captain was injured at this time, so they presumably attacked the bridge.
    - More commandos abseiled to the stern of the boat, and appeared climbing over the side rails from a well-illuminated helicopter. These incursions can clearly be seen on the livestream.

    The attacks, and the timing, were foreseen, and it is quite possible that a few of the passengers may well have armed themselves for self-defence. If they’d had firearms, any of them could have picked off abseiling goons one by one, like plucked chickens on a string. Some may have used 2″x2″ clubs (baseball bats? – how are they likely to have those? – Think through the Turkish exit procedure) and may have tried to break a few chicken’s legs as they came down. Can’t say I blame them. Firearms? No.

    • MRW says:

      The passengers had to go through airport-like security for weapons before they boarded, according to the Turkish seaport security police.

      • edwin says:

        There are a huge number of possibilities. They include:

        * Outright lies by Israel
        * False flag operation by Israel – think Levon Affair
        * Terrorist Organization seeking to create martyrs
        * Bizarre actions by a passenger.

        The actions of Cyprus lead me to think that Israel is “sending a message” to those who would run the blockade. “Sending a message” has been done before. Think Kate Edwards, Iain Hook, Rachel Corrie,
        Thomas Hurndall

        Always in this type of situation as yourself – just assume that the Israel line is true – is the violence committed justified?

        If a couple of individuals really did have pistols, or soldiers boarding the boat were resisted by a few individuals with boards, just how many injuries and deaths would you expect?

        • azythos says:

          The General Director of the Customs in Antalya, last port of call, seems to have released a statement saying that every single passenger had been searched and X-rayed, and all cargo and baggage had been seriously checked. He added that any allegations of arms on board were unsubstantiated and “very absurd”

        • RoHa says:

          Yeah, but he’s a member of Al Qa’ida, isn’t he?

          Or something like that. Ask Mark Regev.

  30. I had previously decided not to post here for two weeks, but last night’s events compel me to make a statement.

    The events were close to my worst fears, for all concerns.
    1. That people would be harmed primarily
    2. That Israel would undertake an illegal action (international waters)
    3. That the flotilla would not undertake actual non-violent civil disobedience approaches
    4. That Israel would look bad
    5. That the action would result in escalation of tensions rather than resolution of tensions

    Sherbrsi just posted that the Turkish ship put up a white flag. I don’t think you know that that communicates that there will be no resistance to arrest. It is NOT a good thing that they put up a white flag and then resisted.

    I’d like to request that people stop for a second and say a prayer for the killed and injured, literally (even if that suggestion makes you angry at me).

    The individuals killed were living souls walking the planet, invited to live by God and the times. That life was taken from them before they had an opportunity to fulfill their life purpose.

    Thank you for living, and for your relationships with family, friends, colleagues, world.

    Thats it for me for two weeks. Please treat others as human beings, even in your angers. We need our best in difficult situations.

    • “3. That the flotilla would not undertake actual non-violent civil disobedience approaches”

      Excatly as expected from you, slimebag..

      • Frances says:

        Witty, do us all a favour and fuck off permanently. Nobody here needs or wants your platitudinous rubbish. This, THIS is the face of your precious Eretz Israel. Has been for a long time. How many more people have to die for you to see it?

        I’ve no real words for this. What on earth is the logic behind this? Have they lost their minds?

        • Notice how all the blame was directed at the peace activists themselves and not a word about his beloved IKF. Tfooh!

        • Frances says:

          And now he’s conveniently disappeared so he won’t have to explain this for us.

          Shahar Pe’er is going to be playing Serena Williams at Roland Garros soon. Can’t wait to see how the crowds react.

    • “Thats it for me for two weeks.”

      I hope we will NEVER see you again, freak! I’ll make an exception and pray for that.

    • RoHa says:

      “Please treat others as human beings”

      Send that message to Israel.

    • Les says:

      And it is impossible to ignore that the US media still considers the occupiers to be the victims and the occupied to be the enemy. zionazism rules uber alles

    • Shingo says:

      Notice how Witty has alrady concluded that the passengers are at fault for resisting arrest in international waters where Israel has no legal rights to do so?

      ”That life was taken from them before they had an opportunity to fulfill their life purpose.”

      Yes Witty, by your thugs. The thugs acting on orders from your beautiful Jewel.

      ”We need our best in difficult situations.”

      Yes Witty, we feel your pain asshole.

    • I don’t think I’ve heard such an outright odiously, pious, hypocritical piece of crap since I last met the priest who tried to rape me.

    • Aref says:

      FUCK YOU Witty you are nothing but a royal asshole.

      • Frances says:

        Well said. Witty doesn’t deserve any more eloquent or well-thought response than a great big “FUCK YOU. AND FUCK YOUR NAZI STATE.”

    • sherbrsi says:

      It is NOT a good thing that they put up a white flag and then resisted.

      Yes, it’s so NOT a good think that the ship put a white flag, in international waters, and yet was not considerate enough to surrender to pirates who had repeatedly made threats and attempts at violently intercepting the boat and its mission.

      Yes, we get it. Anyone who does not dutifully surrender to the violence of the Israeli state is a maximalist, fascist and anti-semite who had it coming.

      We got the memo long ago.

      Why are you leaving? Decided that the Jewel is in some need of polishing?

      This stain won’t be going away for long time, even if you do.

    • Sumud says:

      In other words, I’m going to piss off for 2 weeks while you guys cool down.

      If you have even a shred of decency Richard Witty I suggest you give serious consideration to ever coming back. Your stated goals – to preserve a future for Israel are not being served here. Israel attacks a humanitarian convoy in international waters, killing ~20 people, can it be any clearer that Israel is totally out of control?

      Annie said it marvellously the other day:

      “Get off our backs, we are not your problem.”

      You speak like a big man but act like a small man. Go and start changing hearts and minds among the utterly vile segments of the zionist population that are all over the blogosphere, now saying this was totally justified and they are happy and the IDF should have killed them all. You speak their language – so go among them and make yourself useful. Pretend you’re the messiah if you wish. Just work on the REAL problem which is successive crazy zionists governments and their supporters. If that’s you too (and I suspect it is) I wish you an existential crisis – that transforms you into an authentic liberal or an Eretz Israel zionist that stops pretending otherwise.

    • Shafiq says:

      3. What do you expect when you have armed-Israeli commandos abseiling onto the deck of a ship? That they just wait to be fired upon.

      The ship had already re-routed once to avoid confrontation.

    • Mooser says:

      “I had previously decided not to post here for two weeks…

      So you are just going to execute us without any kind of trial? How could you? Do you really think this is an apropriate punishment?
      You’re a hard man, Witty!

    • Mooser says:

      “I had previously decided not to post here for two weeks,”

      Aw Witty, you don’t have to be ashamed because your son wasn’t one of the first commandos off the helicopter, and didn’t fire the first unprovoked shots. Really, he’ll get his chance sooner or later, and you can post about it, bursting with parental pride!

      • Chaos4700 says:

        We don’t know that, Mooser.

        For all we know, Witty’s rushed off to go greet his son with a hug on the helipad.

        • Mooser says:

          But my God, two weeks! How will we survive?

          Wait a minute! You don’t think Witty is bowing out so he doesn’t have to explain and defend all this maximalism by the Israelis?
          Nah, couldn’t be! Why, that would be intellectual and moral cowardice! No one can accuse Witty of that.

          I’ll give Witty one thing. He’s much smarter than me, I didn’t know what was coming. I sure think, from his comments, that Witty did. He was excusing amd defending this atrocity before it even happened. He knew.

      • Sumud says:

        He knows what was done was completely unjustifiable so he’s run away.

  31. Aref says:

    My sympathies and thoughts are with those who were killed and their families and friends. May they rest in peace.

    • edwin says:

      There has been far, far, too many people murdered over the last 63 years. There has been far, far too many countries willing to look the other way.

      • Aref says:

        yes edwin. Those who choose to look the other way and those who justify the killing of innocents are complicit in murder.

  32. RoHa says:

    Here’s the latest version from the ABC.

    link to abc.net.au

    SMH

    link to smh.com.au

    Murdoch trash.

    link to theaustralian.com.au

  33. Israeli goons are no better, but more often a lot worse, than US goons for instance. Many, if not most, have an exaggerated sense of racial superiority that is not tied to their religious affiliation, but to their living in a tiny, paranoid, militaristic country.
    They live 750 miles away from a country that has 10 times Israel’s population (mostly very basic peasants) but they constantly cite it as a threat to their very existence, because it (just) may be trying to emulate Taiwan’s more developed nuclear programme.
    link to gwu.edu

    Sometime I look NW out of my window, to Taiwan 1100 miles away, and worry like hell that one of their loose nukes is aimed for my extinction.

    I sympathise with those Israelis who fear the same, but not with the mindless goons they have engendered.

  34. Cheryl says:

    I believe these activists knew exactly what would happen. They chose to go anyway. Just like Rachel.
    The Rachel Corrie is headed in the direction of the Gaza shore coming from the great country of Ireland. How the activists decide to proceed will be supported by all of us, I pray. However, surrounded by the ships of Ireland, Turkey, Pakistan, Great Britain, France, Cypress and any who wanted to join would make them safer, would protect them.
    Do continue to bombard the State Department. But more importantly call the White House: 202 456 1414and ask for Denis McDonough, David Axelrod, or Rahm Immanuel. Or call directly to the
    Security Situation room at 202 456 9491. Tell them the Rachel Corrie is on her way. McDonough was in Iowa looking for votes in 2008 – he was all anxious to hear the Corrie story….then quiet. Axelrod was just in Des Moines….happy to return to the city that launched the Obama team.
    He proceeded to ignore the peace activists and me…..ringing my old school bell as hard as the broken thing could ring….Said he wanted my number….
    Then forgot to take it……Ha…..HA…HAAAA. He must think we are stupid, or crazy in Iowa…..Says he wants to contact me and then forgets to take my number…..But he could have asked his old friend Denis, because he has my number. We’ve talked about Israel/Palestine and Rachel Corrie.
    Finally, Mitch Stewart is trying to round up votes with his sidekick, David Plaffe- the p.r. people……they are working hard in Iowa.

    Tell them that when Mitch Stewart and his gang of organizers come to Iowa and try to round up votes we’ll be there with school bells ringing to let Iowans know to kick the bums out……They will know what we are talking about.

    Finally, Mondo to get it off my chest: Des Moines, Iowa is a hotbed of activity. We just do it quietly so you may not notice us….but we had Jeff Halper floating through long before you knew who he was and furthermore we have one of the oldest peace activist couples still out there – husband graduated from McCalester College in St. Paul….just like Halper did.
    AFSC has slowly but methodically educated us.

    Tell them that Iowa is mad. Tell them that Iowa understands that Israel attacks in the dark of night and then hides behind the U.S. government’s
    coattails. Tell them that Iowa is a neighbor to St. Paul and Halper’s college.
    Tell them that Iowans can just holler across the clothesline to let Minnesotians know what is going on…..and it does not take a brain surgeon to figure it out.
    Israel and the U.S……they do their work in the dark of night.

    God bless those aboard these ships, God bless those of us watching.
    Love, cheryl

    • MRW says:

      Cheryl, post this on whitehouse.gov comment section and mention that you are cross-posting to them from a prominent blog.

  35. azythos says:

    Could it be that the civilian government of Turkey intends to try and call off the 60-year asslicking of Israel by its fascist military? At least that’s how they talk:

    President Abdullah Gül:
    “I emphatically condemn the use of violence by the Israeli armed forces against an aid convoy composed of members of the civil society of 32 countries including Turkey, a convoy that was carrying humanitarian aid material to Gaza.”

    “The international community should not stay inactive in the face of this aggression in open violation of international law; this aggression targeted civilians, including old people, women, children and religious leaders of different faiths.”

    The Head of the National Assembly, M.A. Sahin:
    “The Government and Administration of the Republic of Turkey should and will assuredly use the rights and powers recognized by international law in the presence of all these happenings”

    Answering a question leading to criticism of the Government for “not having taken preventive measures even when polemical discussions with Israel started as the ships were leaving port”, he noted that “neither persons who were simply carrying humanitarian help nor the leaders of their countries of origin could even imagine that Israel would resort to such inhumanity.”

    It was, he said, “unthinkable that civilians could be subjected to such treatment in our times.” He said that he did not have the right to accuse anyone for not having foreseen the unforeseeable.

  36. ihsan says:

    Can we please stop with the ZioNazi talk and general Jew bashing please. I understand that a lot of people are angry and horrified. I myself woke up this morning, anxious to learn of the flotilla’s safety.

    We should all remember that many, many Jews and Zionists are actively engaged in our cause for Palestinian freedom. And don’t forget that Israeli activists were also on board the flotilla. Noam’s blogged that Israeli demonstrators are on their way now to the ports. Please don’t alienate them.

    • azythos says:

      Make me cry, will you?
      Where exactly in this page is the “Jew-bashing”? Exactly, please.

      As for “Zio-Nazi talk”, there is every reason gor asserting that the Zionists are not any different than the Nazi except in the scale of their endeavor (which is growing anyway) so why not say it?

    • Cliff says:

      Where is the Jew-bashing, you liar? WHERE – I’m sick of this antisemitism-card BS. That’s the only thing the Zionists can do when confronted. Cowards. Thanks for perpetuating the canard.

    • Aref says:

      Who is Jew bashing? Do you equate Zionist and Jew? Those are two different things in fact as different as night and day. Yes there were Israeli activists on board and there are Israeli and Jewish activists here who are anti-zionist and are outraged at the behavior of this Nazi like state, Israel, the birth child of a racist ideology that is Zionism.

    • sherbrsi says:

      Noam’s blogged that Israeli demonstrators are on their way now to the ports. Please don’t alienate them.

      How far will the Israelis go with their damage control?

      Protesting massacres now when their army has been routinely doing it in slow motion for decades.

      I don’t buy it for a second.

    • MRW says:

      Ihsan,

      Too goddam bad.

    • Aref says:

      Who are you? An IDF plant posing as a an Arab or Muslim? Pathetic.

    • Frances says:

      Bite me.

      Nobody here is doing any Jew-bashing. What the IDF did to these people has less than nothing to do with Judaism or Jewishness or Jewish culture, not by any stretch of the imagination.

      You don’t like the Nazi comparison? Tell them to stop acting like Nazis first. It hurts your feelings? People are dead.

      Don’t try to pretend for even one second that those of us who are justly outraged and revolted by the terrorist actions of this crazy rogue state are motivated by anti-Semitism. Don’t you dare hide behind that canard.

    • MRW says:

      We’re all done with that Jew-bashing accusation and the anti-semitism crap. This is 2010 and Israel is a pariah. Deal with it. Israel is a neanderthal nation that threatens US national security, and unduly influences US foreign policy and internal security measures to the detriment of American citizens.

      If any other country had tried this our Sec of State would have been on TV like she was with North Korea calling on other nations to condemn it.

      The Israeli demonstrators haven’t been very effective have they.

      And if you’d been on this blog as long as I have, you’d know we take our own country to task for its shitty and craven activity in Iraq and Afghanistan, even though this blog isn’t about it, but we erupt about it every once in a while.

      Never, never, have we had an American say “Can we please stop with the neocon talk and general American bashing please….Please don’t alienate them.”

      So peddle that crap some place else.

      • ihsan says:

        What a bunch of moronic armchair comedians. My message was tone down the hate. Punishing all Zionists with the Nazi label is no better than the IDF’s philosophy of collective punishment of the Palestinians.

        I have a vested interest in the safety of that flotilla, my youngest sister is on board. Whilst you sit here bashing away your opinions that are, ultimately, worthless, she is physically making her opinion known whilst the rest of her family is desperately trying to find out if she is at least ok.

        As for the “IDF plant” guy… you know nothing about me.

        • sherbrsi says:

          I have a vested interest in the safety of that flotilla, my youngest sister is on board. Whilst you sit here bashing away your opinions that are, ultimately, worthless, she is physically making her opinion known whilst the rest of her family is desperately trying to find out if she is at least ok.

          Piss off.

          You have a younger sister on board of the ship which was aggressively attacked by and massacred BY the Zionist state, and without any news of her safety despite your “desperate” attempts, you are telling US to tone down the criticism?

          I thought the IDF plant thing was a joke, but now it seems you are of that Nazi ilk.

        • Cliff says:

          ihsan, NO ONE HERE IS TALKING ABOUT JEWS BUT YOU

          Goddamn, 40+ fucking years into this occupation, into this THEFT of Palestine, and WHILST THE IDF IS KILLING INNOCENT PEOPLE AGAIN AFTER THE GAZA MASSACRE

          and you’re lecturing us about some non-existent issue here of political correctness?

          F U

        • I bet Ihsan’s real name is Shlomo, Uri or Ariel..and that he assumes that everybody here is as stupid as he is.

        • Donald says:

          I thought his posts in this thread were unfortunate, but people here are again jumping to conclusions about someone because they don’t like his posts here. If you bother googling Ihsan at mondoweiss and look at some of his posts, you’ll see he’s generally a critic of Zionism.

          link to google.com

        • Chaos4700 says:

          Well, what sort of reliable critic is he if he’s going to turn around and equate justified anger about an atrocity on the high seas as “Jew bashing?”

        • Mooser says:

          “My message was tone down the hate.”

          So you want us to stop rappelling down lines on to aid ships and shooting people? Okay, bucko, just for you, we’ll stop! Happy now?

          Oh, and please, go fuck yourself with a Shabbos candle! From one Jew to, well, whatever the hell you are.

    • Mooser says:

      “Can we please stop with the ZioNazi talk and general Jew bashing please.”

      I’m a Jew, asshole (I’m a Jew asshole, too, but that’s another thread) and if I want to bash my fellow Jews, just try and stop me. You don’t like it, call Phil and Adam and have me banned.
      And believe me, pal, I can bash the Zionists plenty and never even mention the Jews, or the Nazis.
      So fuck, if you please, off!

  37. The Israelis can bullshit all they like. There are independent sources on board the boat including several very good Australian journalists and members of the European parliament who with their “western credentials” will not be so easily dismissed by the biased western world.

    • sherbrsi says:

      Right. The MFA spokesmen called the flotilla passengers “militants.”

      I’m sure the European MPs will take to that nicely.

    • Chaos4700 says:

      The kicker will be if any of these turned up wounded… or dead. As a matter of duty, journalists put themselves close to the action. In this case, that meant within “fire with extreme prejudice” range.

  38. The Israelis are refusing to confirm to the media the details of which hospitals the wounded have been taken to according to some reports.

  39. Shmuel says:

    This massacre has an official name: Operation Sky Winds. How bloody poetic.

    • Shingo says:

      It should be renamed Operation Limp Dick.

    • MRW says:

      An official name? Then that means it was planned well in advance, and is proof that anything on those ships had nothing to do with their orders to shoot.

      You’ll notice they only went after the Turkish ship, not the two with US flags.

    • Frances says:

      It’s like what Norman Finkelstein said about Cast Lead. “Who are the freaks in the IDF who sit around in offices thinking up names for these massacres?”

      Can’t wait to hear what he and Goldstone and Chomsky and any number of commentators will have to say about this.

    • MRW says:

      Shmuel,

      Even though you’ve left the country and you don’t defend Israel’s actions, this must cause you no end of heartache.

      • Shmuel says:

        I am devastated, MRW.

        • MRW says:

          Shmuel, good thing you got your wife and daughter away from this.

        • Mooser says:

          I, (as I have demonstrated in comments, a couple of times), can’t even begin to understand the aunguish this puts you through, Shmuel. And the conflicted feelings which must be your lot.
          When I pray tonight, I will thank God that I wasn’t born an Israeli, instead of a woman.

  40. Aref says:

    From the Guardian (London)

    The Stop the War coalition is organising a protest outside Downing Street at 2pm today.

    “Yet another act of Israeli barbarism as its forces storm one of the seven ships on the international flotilla taking aid to Gaza, where Israel’s illegal seige is starving Palestinians of essential resources. At least 20 activists on board are reported to have been killed by Israeli forces. Please join the emergency demonstration today if you can. Publicise it as widely as possible by email, text, Facebook, Twitter etc.”

  41. Shmuel says:

    More reports from the army (from Yediot and Maariv). Chief of Staff Gabi Ashkenazi says the commandos did not have sufficient anti-riot gear. Some of the commandos themselves are quoted as saying that they carried only “paint-ball guns” and “pistols as a last resort”. They claim they were attacked with metal clubs and knives – 3-4 attackers per soldier – as soon as they landed, and felt like “that soldier lynched in Ramallah” (an incident from a few years ago – a lone Israeli soldier got lost in Ramallah), and some jumped into the sea for fear of being attacked. They also said they saw live fire from the boat.

    Two of the boats have arrived in Ashdod, and 15 arrests have been made so far. The Marmara is expected to dock later in the day. Israeli citizens will be questioned by police, Palestinians by the Shin Bet and internationals by Interior Ministry officials. Special Prison Authority forces are on standby at Ashdod to take the passengers to various prisons.

    • MRW says:

      Regev said on Al-Jazeera an hour ago that all passengers would be allowed to return to their countries immediately, but if they decided to stay they would be put in detention camps.

    • MRW says:

      This video of the IDF arriving at the IHH ship in the middle of the night puts the lie to that. Scroll down.
      link to worldbulletin.net

      Those soldiers in the helicopter aren’t carrying paintball guns.

      • Shmuel says:

        Those soldiers in the helicopter aren’t carrying paintball guns.

        I figured that would be the first and easiest lie to disprove.

    • sherbrsi says:

      Some of the commandos themselves are quoted as saying that they carried only “paint-ball guns” and “pistols as a last resort”. They claim they were attacked with metal clubs and knives – 3-4 attackers per soldier – as soon as they landed, and felt like “that soldier lynched in Ramallah” (an incident from a few years ago – a lone Israeli soldier got lost in Ramallah), and some jumped into the sea for fear of being attacked. They also said they saw live fire from the boat.

      You have to admire the Israeli audacity to make itself the victim in any and every situation.

      Here the pirates intercepted and violently forced themselves onto a flotilla of peace activists in international waters, and it was the armed intruders that felt threatened.

      • Yes perhaps the feelings of the soldiers were hurt and they missed out on a hearty breakfast and a good night’s sleep. Let’s be fair.

      • Shingo says:

        ”You have to admire the Israeli audacity to make itself the victim in any and every situation.”

        It goes hand in hand with the Zionism psychosis. There fanatics ttruly believe they are the victims here.

      • Shmuel says:

        You have to admire the Israeli audacity to make itself the victim in any and every situation.

        That’s the official Israeli story Israel and its apologists will stick to: Innocent navy commandos brutally attacked by violent, armed civilians, while trying to commandeer a humanitarian aid vessel in international waters.

        • MRW says:

          Yeah, sounds like ‘Navy Seals attacked by armed violent church charity group’.

        • Danaa says:

          More like the BP spokesman ” it’s them violent dolphins that attacked Horizon, causing the BOP to malfunction, and 11 of our best men to die. So we just had to fill up the sea with sludge to defend our rights. That should show them whales and dolphins and fishermen who’s boss”.

  42. MRW says:

    My NPR station is only reporting what Mark Regeve has to say about this, which is that the IDF was fired upon. Yeah, in the dark. In the middle of the night.

  43. Shmuel says:

    Yediot has more on the commandos: “Only after a fighter was gravely injured did we open fire”. “Flotilla 13 (navy commandos) fighters expected a struggle with political activists, but encountered experienced street fighters. The force was too small, gas grenades were not thrown at the deck, and the soldiers lost control”. “We saw the barrel of a gun. It fired at us and we fired at it”.

    • sherbrsi says:

      Thanks for posting updates.

      I have no stomach to read the usual Israeli publications right now.

      • Shmuel says:

        I don’t speak Turkish, so I figured I’d at least help out with the Hebrew press – important in trying to sort the whole mess out, especially what is said by non-spokespeople, while there’s still a lot of confusion. I’m off to the demonstration now.

    • Shingo says:

      Yes that infamous gun, that posed such a threat to Israel’s existence.

      I wonder if we’ll ever see it?

    • lysias says:

      So, after one gun is fired, they open up on the whole crowd? Where was their fire discipline? Doesn’t sound like highly trained commandos to me.

      • Shingo says:

        “‘Where was their fire discipline? Doesn’t sound like highly trained commandos to me.”‘

        The IDF is not what it used to be. Israel have gotten fat and lazy.

    • MRW says:

      Hunh? We saw the goddam video.

  44. Israeli propaganda in action: go on the offensive and play the outraged victim. So predictable.

  45. بعد التحيه والسلام علي جميع المشتركين
    أن اردنا أن نجعل أسرئيل والتي ليس لها اي هويه كدوله ان ترجع وترضخ لنا لا أن نطالب بحدود فلسطين عند حدود 67
    أنما نطلب الحق الطبيعي لنا نطالب بكل اراضي فلسطين المحتله من جنوب لبنان وحتي الحدود مع مصر والاردن
    وان اراد اليهود ان يعيشوا معنا لا مانع عندناوليس كشعب وانما كاناس منمج مع الشعب الفلسطيني في حريه وسلام والا فلا سلام ولا استقرار لهم نحن المسلمين والعرب اصحاب حق وهم يعلمون ذلك ولكنهم ليس يهود انما هم صهاينه عصابات تابعه للدول الاوربيه وامريكا لجعل المنطقه غير مستقره ونكون لهم ولمصانعهم اسواق ليس الا الحقيقه الحقيقه المره
    اين صلاح الدين اين جمال عبد الناصر
    اين السادات واين انت يا محمد حسني مبارك اما حان الوقت انك لتحمل اسم محمد ومعك شعب مصر خير جنود الارض كلنا ورئك فقم وامر بالجهاد الله ينصرك
    واعدوا لهم ما استطعتم من قوه والله ناصرك بأذنه

  46. I have no clear some things.
    First of all, the Israeli navy was totally over-reacting!!! Killing people like that is not murdering, as it’s self-defense, but it sure is an international crime.
    On the other side, what the hell kind of peace activists carry knives, guns and petrol bombs? The both sides are guilty, stop accusing Israel because Hamas, Hezbollah and Palestinian organizations do crimes EVERY SINGLE DAY and the world says NOTHING about it, just like the Darfur genocide. It’s easy for you to accuse a modern state, a country, while there’s poor Gaza, and I really feel sorry for those people but… Seriously… They have chosen Hamas to rule Gaza in the first place, and see what they’ve got?
    And here’s something I bet you don’t know, there were voting at the United Nations back in 1947, and they voted for 2 states : Palestine and Israel. The idea was approved, by 33 countries’ agreement, and the Palestinian people DIDN’T WANT TO.
    So please, I’m against Israel’s war crimes, but… STOP THINKING THE PALESTINIAN PEOPLE ARE SO NAIVE!!! THERE ARE 1 BILLION ARABS IN THE WORLD AND ONLY 13 MILION JEWS SO LEAVE THEM ALONE!

    • Shingo says:

      “On the other side, what the hell kind of peace activists carry knives, guns and petrol bombs?”

      Petrol bombs?

      You just expsed yourself as a sleazy troll, which was obvious by the ID you are using. As it turns out, the Istaelis have confirmed there were no guns on board and as for the knives, they were kitchen utensils you dip shit.

      “The both sides are guilty, stop accusing Israel because Hamas, Hezbollah and Palestinian  organizations do crimes EVERY SINGLE DAY”

      When was the last massacre that Hezbollah or Hamas perpetrated? Yes, both sides are guilty, but only one side gas US supplied F 16 fighters and only one side is occupying stolen land.

      “They have chosen Hamas to rule Gaza in the first place, and see what they’ve got?”

      I see. Well as it turns out, Israel chose Likud, so when do you propose we blockade Israel ?

      “And here’s something I bet you don’t know…”

      We know it and we’ve heard that crap all before. Here’s  something I bet you don’t know – Ben Gurion vowed that Israel would reject the partition as soon as Israel was admitted to the UN, so as it turns out, Israel said yes with their fingers crossed behind their back.

      Of course, 175 countries have votedfor Iarael to withdraw from the occupied territories and Israelis. DIDN’T WANT TO.

      Now please kindly fuck off back to your. Hasbara mothership and update your billshot talking points. 

      • I see everything ‘up-close’, they were using big knives from the boats’ storage, because they knew the soldiers will come to their ships.
        How did they know you ask? Because the Israeli army offered them to go to Ashdod so they can check if everything OK with the ships (no bombs getting sent to gaza or anything) and the “peace activists” didn’t want to, so Israel had to check that the ships don’t send bombs and missiles to Gaza, right??
        And just know, that the ships were about to send Gaza 1/8 of what ISRAEL give to gaza EVERY DAY, so yeah… There were probably weapons on the ships…
        And now tell me, back in ’47, if you were a Jewish governor, let me remind you that your people have no country for 2000 years, a terrible holocaust just happened and your people almost got destroyed forever, what would you do??? I would like to hear…
        Now, before I finish, I just hope you’re just anti-Zionist and not anti-Semitc, because let me remind you of what the Jewish nation invented… The atomic thing, the cellphone, the electric trains, the computers, the dynamite (for mines), many medicines, jeans, remote, Genetic Engineering, Google and even Hollywood so… I don’t think Jews are that bad…

        So yeah, that’s a bit of what I had to say so far.
        Peace, and greetings from me,
        A Political – Neutral – Atheist.

        • Shmuel says:

          There were probably weapons on the ships…
          No. There were not.

          a terrible holocaust just happened
          2-3 generations ago.

          let me remind you of what the Jewish nation invented…
          You forgot the cherry tomato.

        • what’s wrong with cherry tomatoes? it’s awesome, I eat some everyday

        • Shmuel says:

          what’s wrong with cherry tomatoes?

          It’s kind of a running joke here about Israeli hubris and Israel’s sorry attempts to “rebrand” itself. You can look it up in the archives.