I haven’t much to say about the Israeli seizure of a “humanitarian aid” boat that climaxed with the deaths of several “peaceful aid workers” (read as much sarcasm into that as you would like), but I will note a few things:
- This was a deliberate set-up and provocation, and the jihadist organizers got just what they wanted.
- The IDF officers in charge were nuts to send their men in armed with paintball guns.
- If the situation had been reversed, the world would be cheering.
Roger Kimball, who pretty much covers my feelings in the matter, provides a ready-made explanation that even EU foreign ministers should understand:
- Israel (and Egypt) decided some time ago to blockade the Gaza strip because the Palestinians could not break their unfortunate habit of launching rocket attacks against Israel.
- On May 31, the six-ship “freedom flotilla” approaches the Gaza bloackade. The Israeli Navy repeatedly warns the ships to turn back or divert to the port of Ashod where their cargo can be inspected.
- Those commanding the ships ignore the order.
- After further warnings, Israeli commandos board the ships from helicopters. The commandos are instantly set upon by Palestinian “peace activists” who beat them with metal clubs and other objects.
- The Israelis, in self-defense, shoot several of those threatening them.
- The firefight being over, the Israelis arrest nearly 600 “peace activists” who refuse to identify themselves.
He also has a couple of interesting videos.
ADDENDUM: Israel’s Foreign Ministry has a good background paper on the international law concerning the Gaza blockade and the interception of the convoy. Also, see this one on the amount of genuine aid the Israelis let through the Gaza border checkpoints. Had the organizers truly been interested in getting aid to Gaza, they could have stopped at an Israeli port and shipped the goods from there – as the Israelis had offered. But that wasn’t what they were after, their real goal being the opening of a maritime corridor for Hamas to smuggle weapons through. Remember the Karine-A?
UPDATE: Joel Pollak looks at “Israel, the Truth and the Asymmetric Warfare Of Embedded Journalism.”