Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Eyeless in Gaza

So, the UN has made an inquiry into the boarding of the flotilla,
"The Security Council takes note of the statement of the UN Secretary-General on the need to have a full investigation into the matter and it calls for a prompt, impartial, credible and transparent investigation conforming to international standards.

"The Security Council stresses that the situation in Gaza is not sustainable. The Council re-emphasizes the importance of the full implementation of Resolutions 1850 and 1860."
1860 reads "SECURITY COUNCIL CALLS FOR IMMEDIATE, DURABLE, FULLY RESPECTED CEASEFIRE IN GAZA LEADING TO FULL WITHDRAWAL OF ISRAELI FORCES" There are very many more calls as to what has to happen; indeed, anyone with even the slightest knowledge of the history of Israel/Palestine would recognise that these were never going to happen. Full implementation is cloud-cuckoo land. Hamas knows no limits to its actions and does nothing to support any Resolution. THE bitter Israel-Hamas conflict has touched off Arab-Arab conflicts almost as bitter. Responsibility for the war in Gaza, and for the Palestinian fatalities there, was placed squarely on Hamas by Palestinian Authority President Mahmoud Abbas. "We called the leaders of Hamas and told them, 'Please, do not end the truce', he said. Hamas ended a six-month truce with Israel two weeks before the Israeli attack.

An Abbas aide, Nimr Hammad, termed the rocket fire into Israel reckless. "The one responsible for the massacre is Hamas," he said. "Hamas should not have given the Israelis a pretext." Bassam Abu-Sumayyah, a columnist for the daily Al-Hayat Al-Jadida, accused Hamas of megalomania and said it had acted without even a little bit of political and security sense. It had behaved like a superpower.

The UN recommendation by the Secretary-General on the "need to have a full investigation into the matter and it calling for a prompt, impartial, credible and transparent investigation conforming to international standards" shows what a raddled old prostitute that organisation has become. Does it have so little faith in its own status that it cannot organise such a inquiry itself?

An ex-UN big gun found reasons for what happened ""Former British ambassador to the UN Sir Jeremy Greenstock said there had been "immediate international rage" following the "unnecessary loss of life".

He said that Israel had to make sure weapons were not getting into Gaza "so some kind of defence is necessary but this was clearly not very well handled".

Sir Jeremy added: "It's past time by some years for serious international action to end the blockade and the virtual starvation of Gaza. This is not going to work as a way of dealing with the Palestinian territories over the long term."

Given the scale of Israeli actions prior to the flotilla sailing, it is hard to see what more they might have done when facing violence upon landing. The interception of the flotilla followed numerous warnings given to the organisers of the flotilla before leaving their ports as well as while sailing towards the Gaza Strip. In these warnings, it was made clear to the organisers that they could dock in the Ashdod sea port and unload the equipment they are carrying in order to deliver it to the Gaza Strip in an orderly manner, following the appropriate security checks. Upon expressing their unwillingness to cooperate and arrive at the port, it was decided to board the ships and lead them to Ashdod.
What does not seem to be getting much publicity is the claim by Israel's Ambassador to Britain that five other vessels in the flotilla were boarded without incident. The forcible action was all on one vessel. The injured and deceased are predominantly Turkish; the main agitator behind the flotilla being established. It was a repeat of a previous attempt to use the flotilla as a publicity generating device. "
It will be the ninth expedition to try to reach Gaza by sea. According to the Free Gaza movement, this time it will be bigger and better than ever. The last attempt to reach Gaza by sea was in June 2009 — then, Free Gaza ships were intercepted by the Israeli Navy off Gaza, and forced to proceed to the southern Israeli port of Ashdod, where the cargo was impounded (some of it was later transferred by land to Israeli crossings and sent into Gaza). The activists aboard were jailed before deportation"
So, all were aware of what could happen and, in that respect, the latest operation was not such a piece of loose cannon work as has been alleged. It is for others to decide whether the past history, Turkish involvement and the politically aware and active passenger list led to hot-heads deciding not to go quietly this time.

Israel is criticised for an aggressive attitude and using more force than was necessary. But then, they always do. Always that is since being subjected to sudden and unannounced attacks by Arab nations. They are a small country and any well executed attack would be all over and done with before any international rescue could be set afoot. Israel is still technically at war with a number of Muslim countries since 1967 whose aim is the extinction of Israel.

I think few of us here in UK appreciate the part that Zionism plays in what goes on in Palestine and Israel. My own understanding - gained whilst employed by a Arab company - is that the bogey-man in Muslim eyes is the Zionist. Not all Israelis are part of that movement but get caught up in their politics and actions.

It may well be that the whole flotilla action is a storm in a teacup. The latest stage in something occurring in 'a strange land far away' Already, in the Twitter listing of what is hot and what is not, the flotilla question has been overtaken by Britain Got Talent and may well drop off the listing altogether. Maybe, the Gaza publicity campaign could end up as a winner. Remember this bit of history from our own past which has many similarities? "
Gandhi's men advanced in complete silence before stopping about one-hundred meters before the cordon. A selected team broke away from the main group, waded through the ditch and neared the barbed-wire fence. (...) Receiving the signal, a large group of local police officers suddenly moved towards the advancing protestors and subjected them to a hail of blows to the head delivered from steel-covered Lathis (truncheons). None of the protesters raised so much as an arm to protect themselves against the barrage of blows. They fell to the ground like pins in a bowling alley. From where I was standing I could hear the nauseating sound of truncheons impacting against unprotected skulls. The waiting main group moaned and drew breath sharply at each blow. Those being subjected to the onslaught fell to the ground quickly writhing unconsciously or with broken shoulders (...). The main group, which had been spared until now, began to march in a quiet and determined way forwards and were met with the same fate. They advanced in a uniform manner with heads raised - without encouragement through music or battle cries and without being given the opportunity to avoid serious injury or even death. The police attacked repeatedly and the second group were also beaten to the ground. There was no fight, no violence; the marchers simply advanced until they themselves were knocked down."

It worked for Gandhi.

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