T Nation

Israel and Smugglers/Aid Workers

Just to start, I’m not trying to be confrontational, just to start a debate.
As far as I’m concerned, Israel had no other choice than to intercept these ships.
No-one had officially informed them of the ships, no-one had searched the ships, and Israel have a bit of a problem with people smuggling in mortars and rifles.

As for the conduct of the interception, I’d like to wait until the report. Both sides claim the other side instigated gun fire, and I have no idea as I’m not on the boat.
Any other perspectives?

This attack was launched in international waters. There is video footage of Israeli soldiers shooting at passengers before boarding the ship. These ships (two of them registered with the USA) were full of humanitarian aid, innocent civilians. Nearly twenty people have been killed.

This is sickening, there is no justification for this, no excuses. If there is any retaliation for this, they have brought it on themselves.

It should not have been in international waters. Full stop, no question on that one.

I think we might need to wait and see on the firing on civilians thing. As far as anyone outside of the boats knows, the flotilla fired first. Not saying they did or didn’t, just that I don’t know. If Israel did fire on
the boats and aim to kill (not warning shots) without provocation, then again, agreed, not on.

The ships may have been full of humanitarian aid or might have been full of mortars. Israel didn’t know. I don’t see how we can expect the Israeli military to trust Free Gaza and all the people on the boats not to be bringing weapons.

Once on the ships, I think it’s pretty certain that the passengers attacked the Israelis with knives and axes. In that case, the Israeli troops I feel, were justified to shoot those attacking with weapons. If the people killed were those wielding weapons, I think that’s okay. Any caught in crossfire is sad but unavoidable. Anyone killed otherwise is unacceptable.

I think the justification is that Israel are attempting to maintain a blockade to prevent weapons from reaching a state that is terrorising Israel’s people. I agree with the blockade, and so agree with concept of intercepting these ships. The conduct is a different matter, which I do not agree with parts of and others I do not have enough evidence to condemn or support.

Score another one for “brave little Israel”, that shining beacon of democracy in the Middle East.

You know, the country that has over 400 nuclear weapons but won’t sign onto the U.N.'s nuclear non-proliferation act. The country that wants to drag America into another war with Iran because they have the audacity to want to have one nuke while Israel has over 400. The country that keeps Palestinians living in an apartheid state. The country that kills innocent women and children in Gaza with tanks, jet fighters and advanced weaponry because the Palestinians launched a mortar at them, and the reason they launched the mortar was because of their inhumane treatment. The country that receives billions of American taxpayer dollars and military equipment annually and Americans receive NOTHING in return. The country that continues to defy international law by continuing to build on Palestinian land.

World opinion is turning against Israel and for good reason. How long will Americans support a Racist, Warmongering, Apartheid-state?

I agree that they were right to search these ships if they were in Israeli territorial waters. But they were not, this was illegal even if we forget the fact that people have been killed. I think my immediate reaction is to assume that the Israelis initiated the violence, but we don’t know for sure. Like I said, the video footage seems to show people injured before any soldiers boarded the ship. I am just shocked by the loss of life. Given their past behaviour, including using phosphorous rounds against civilian targets, I suspect the worst.

You say that this blockade is to prevent weapons from reaching a state that is terrorising Israel; but I would argue that it is the Israelis terrorising the Palestinians.

Here is the video: http://www9.gazetevatan.com/israil-turk-bayrakli-yardim-gemisinde-olum-kustu/308396/1/Gundem

There were no motors or rifles as you claim, and the ship was in International waters adding piracy to Israel’s CV along with mass murder of the Palestinian people

I’ll respond fully soon, I’m working on some revision atm. Just to clarify, I never claimed there were rifles or mortars.

Americans need to stand up and stop $4bn of military aid each year for these scums

Just to let everyone know some press agencies are reporting the death toll has hit 20 inevitably some of the dead will be from the EU as many activists on board were from European countries

Charlemagne, how do you know about israel nuclear power? has it been proven that israel even have nuclear capabilities? well the answer is NO!!! so dont be an idiot and just throw words like they are facts!!
ok now to deal with Iran…a country that had stated the israel need to be completely removed from the face of the earth, do they need to have the ability to do so? as so far their conventional army is far too weak to do so they are trying to developed the unconventional means.

and so far all the videos that are shown are biased and edited in a way to show Israel as the aggressor… until some real IDF videos are released showing the army attacking first no one can say nothing. and even though from these videos it is obvious that the so called “peace activist” attacked first!

The Israelis started firing the minute they stepped on these ships. They did not start firing because they were attacked.

The only reason we support the wretched country of Israel is because our politicians are pawns to the Jewish lobby in DC. There is no other reason.

[quote]kapulsky wrote:
Charlemagne, how do you know about israel nuclear power? has it been proven that israel even have nuclear capabilities? well the answer is NO!!! so dont be an idiot and just throw words like they are facts!!
ok now to deal with Iran…a country that had stated the israel need to be completely removed from the face of the earth, do they need to have the ability to do so? as so far their conventional army is far too weak to do so they are trying to developed the unconventional means.

and so far all the videos that are shown are biased and edited in a way to show Israel as the aggressor… until some real IDF videos are released showing the army attacking first no one can say nothing. and even though from these videos it is obvious that the so called “peace activist” attacked first!
[/quote]

You know, if you’re going to have morally reprehensible opinions, could you try to back them up with facts?

Israel has been a nuclear power for a long time. Why is Mordechai Vanunu still in jail (which incidentally, is a disgrace!) if they have no nuclear weapons?

You think the independent Al-Jazeera video footage is biased, but you want IDF footage to clear things up? You realise there were journalists on both sides, if there existed footage that would exonerate the Israelis, why are they not releasing it?

Anyway, regardless of that, this was in INTERNATIONAL WATERS. It was completely illegal, even if you ignore the wholesale murder of people bringing humanitarian aid!

How can you justify this?!

Oh by the way, Iran are an NPT signatory, Israel are not.

Iran also openly support terrorism.
so i dont think that the NPT is gonna stop them, do you?

israel is not and has never been a nuclear power…it is widely thought that it is but never been proven. so maybe u need to get your facts right. and Vanunu is in jail for sharing national secrets (not just about nuclear arms, but other).
at the end of the day its not the world business what Israel does in order to keep it safe. so your opinion doesnt really matter nor my or any other non-israeli person here!

and i do agree with you that the raid shouldnâ??t have happen in international waters. they should have waited a lil bit until the boats entered the IDF territory.

[quote]kapulsky wrote:
Charlemagne, how do you know about israel nuclear power? has it been proven that israel even have nuclear capabilities? well the answer is NO!!! so dont be an idiot and just throw words like they are facts!!
ok now to deal with Iran…a country that had stated the israel need to be completely removed from the face of the earth, do they need to have the ability to do so? as so far their conventional army is far too weak to do so they are trying to developed the unconventional means.

and so far all the videos that are shown are biased and edited in a way to show Israel as the aggressor… until some real IDF videos are released showing the army attacking first no one can say nothing. and even though from these videos it is obvious that the so called “peace activist” attacked first!
[/quote]

Even if the activists attacked them first which i highly doubt, they are within their full rights to do so since they were in international waters and once the IDF boarded their ships it was classed as piracy

read above

The Israeli commandos were armed with paintball guns and pistols, they were under strict orders to not resort to their handguns unless they were in danger of their lives.

"Navy commandoes slid down to the vessel one by one, yet
then the unexpected occurred: The passengers that awaited
them on the deck pulled out bats, clubs, and slingshots
with glass marbles, assaulting each soldier as he disembarked.
The fighters were nabbed one by one and were beaten up badly,
yet they attempted to fight back.

However, to their misfortune, they were only equipped
with paintball rifles used to disperse minor protests,
such as the ones held in Bilin. The paintballs obviously
made no impression on the activists, who kept on beating
the troops up and even attempted to wrest away their weapons.

One soldier who came to the aid of a comrade was captured
by the rioters and sustained severe blows. The commandoes
were equipped with handguns but were told they should
only use them in the face of life-threatening situations.
When they came down from the chopper, they kept on shouting
to each other â??donâ??t shoot, donâ??t shoot,â?? even though
they sustained numerous blows."

It was only after the “aid workers” got several of their handguns from the commandos (and shot several of the commandos) and another brought up a rifle and the commandos were being stabbed by the “aid workers” and one commando was thrown 30 feet to a lower deck and lost consciousness that the ok was finally given to use their pistols to defend themselves.

Facts trump sensationalism every time . . .

There was no question that the vessels would going to enter Israeli waters in violation of Israeli Law. Same way that any nations navy attempts to intercept a direct threat outside its own waters.

[quote]kapulsky wrote:
Charlemagne, how do you know about israel nuclear power? has it been proven that israel even have nuclear capabilities? well the answer is NO!!! so dont be an idiot and just throw words like they are facts!!
ok now to deal with Iran…a country that had stated the israel need to be completely removed from the face of the earth, do they need to have the ability to do so? as so far their conventional army is far too weak to do so they are trying to developed the unconventional means.

and so far all the videos that are shown are biased and edited in a way to show Israel as the aggressor… until some real IDF videos are released showing the army attacking first no one can say nothing. and even though from these videos it is obvious that the so called “peace activist” attacked first!
[/quote]

Are you that delusional to think that Israel does not have nuclear weapons?

http://www.fas.org/nuke/guide/israel/nuke/

Of course Israel doesn’t want to sign onto any treaty that would open them up to investigation to their own nuclear capabilities.

Yet we have the politicians in Washington, bought and paid for by AIPAC and the ADL, clamouring for restrictions and all out war on Iran because they want to have nuclear capabilities.

[quote]IrishSteel wrote:
The Israeli commandos were armed with paintball guns and pistols, they were under strict orders to not resort to their handguns unless they were in danger of their lives.

"Navy commandoes slid down to the vessel one by one, yet
then the unexpected occurred: The passengers that awaited
them on the deck pulled out bats, clubs, and slingshots
with glass marbles, assaulting each soldier as he disembarked.
The fighters were nabbed one by one and were beaten up badly,
yet they attempted to fight back.

However, to their misfortune, they were only equipped
with paintball rifles used to disperse minor protests,
such as the ones held in Bilin. The paintballs obviously
made no impression on the activists, who kept on beating
the troops up and even attempted to wrest away their weapons.

One soldier who came to the aid of a comrade was captured
by the rioters and sustained severe blows. The commandoes
were equipped with handguns but were told they should
only use them in the face of life-threatening situations.
When they came down from the chopper, they kept on shouting
to each other â??donâ??t shoot, donâ??t shoot,â?? even though
they sustained numerous blows."

It was only after the “aid workers” got several of their handguns from the commandos (and shot several of the commandos) and another brought up a rifle and the commandos were being stabbed by the “aid workers” and one commando was thrown 30 feet to a lower deck and lost consciousness that the ok was finally given to use their pistols to defend themselves.

Facts trump sensationalism every time . . .

There was no question that the vessels would going to enter Israeli waters in violation of Israeli Law. Same way that any nations navy attempts to intercept a direct threat outside its own waters.

[/quote]

Source?