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Author Topic: Can you believe the Gaza Aid Raid?
Mr. Geek 2U
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Icon 4 posted June 01, 2010 19:50      Profile for Mr. Geek 2U     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Oh my, oh, my oh my.

What a terrible thing. What a terrible crisis!

These highly trained commandos went into the very teeth of a deadly terrorist convoy and got their guns stolen!

It is true! That is what Isreal says! True! True! True!

I just could not believe that. But THEN!

There is always a but! A big butt! And I like big butts and I'm not lyin!

So here is what 'splains it all Lew-see! The actual Isreali Commando Pre-Raid Breifing.

Be warned! It is graphic and scary!

TRUE ISREALI COMMANDO PRE-RAID BREIFING VIDEO!

Scary, huh!

Have a great day!

Mr. Geek 2U!

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CommanderShroom
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Icon 1 posted June 01, 2010 21:34      Profile for CommanderShroom     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
[Applause]
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Icon 14 posted June 01, 2010 22:26      Profile for Snaggy   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
[Applause]

very nice.

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted June 02, 2010 02:31      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
____ Thanks Skippy,

____ How does a country handle an invasion?

____ How do you turn back a flotilla with out appearing like a bunch of PIRATES? So much of this whole debacle almost seems like a soap opera. I do not know the right way but this was surly not it.

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fs

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Icon 1 posted June 05, 2010 01:49      Profile for fs   Author's Homepage     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
In an interesting side note, Swedish crime writer Henning Mankell was one of the activists with the flotilla.

Does anyone want to bet on what happens in his next book?

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Erbo
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Icon 1 posted June 05, 2010 17:57      Profile for Erbo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
This post by Subotai Bahadur outlines the legalities of the situation surrounding the Israeli blockade of Gaza. It's worth your time to read, as he cites the actual letter of the law that governs these situations, such as the Hague and Geneva Conventions and the San Remo Manual, and shows that Israel, far from being "pirates" or "outlaws," are acting in full accordance with the appropriate laws, and might even be said to have shown admirable restraint.
quote:
Israel had every legal right to declare the blockade, to enforce it where their judgment of military requirements says to place the blockade line, to stop, to board, to search, or to divert any ship attempting to approach the blockade line. Under international law. And under that same international law, once there was resistance or refusal; they had every right to sink those vessels. And they still do for the next wave coming at them, and any after that.

Yes, international law grants rights and protections in war zones to innocent civilian traffic. But to keep those rights and to not be re-classified as a target, it also imposes responsibilities and duties of compliance. Failure to fulfill those responsibilities, or comply with directions means you are no longer an innocent civilian, but rather an enemy belligerent, subject to treatment as such.

Will this stop the howling of Israel's critics? Absolutely not! In their eyes, Israel is "guilty until proven guilty" (to quote the remarks of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu), and has absolutely no right of self-defense, even from those who have repeatedly, clearly, and publicly stated that their intention is "to drive the Jews into the sea."

Do note, also, that the second vessel to approach the blockade, the Irish-flagged MV Rachel Corrie--and isn't that an ironic name to give a relief ship?--submitted to Israeli inspection, and was not fired upon or attacked. The vessel was escorted to an Israeli port, from which Israel itself will transport the "humanitarian relief" supplies it contains to Gaza, as they have been doing all along. The people trying to break the blockade aren't interested in "humanitarian relief," they're interested in getting weapons to Hamas, which will be used to kill Israelis, including Israeli civilians.

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TheMoMan
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Icon 1 posted June 06, 2010 02:35      Profile for TheMoMan         Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
____ While there may be legal reasons for a blockade, and the blockade may be legal, is it the only way? Another view.

http://www.theatlantic.com/international/archive/2010/06/what-is-israels-blockade-for/57574/

____ Just because Israel does it, does not make the action morally right.

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Grummash

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Icon 1 posted June 06, 2010 03:17      Profile for Grummash     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
quote:
Originally posted by Erbo:
Israel, far from being "pirates" or "outlaws," are acting in full accordance with the appropriate laws, and might even be said to have shown admirable restraint.

The people trying to break the blockade aren't interested in "humanitarian relief," they're interested in getting weapons to Hamas, which will be used to kill Israelis, including Israeli civilians.

Restraint???? Bullshit! Read this extract from The Guardian -

Nine Turkish men on board the Mavi Marmara were shot a total of 30 times and five were killed by gunshot wounds to the head, according to the vice-chairman of the Turkish council of forensic medicine, which carried out the autopsies for the Turkish ministry of justice today.

The results revealed that a 60-year-old man, Ibrahim Bilgen, was shot four times in the temple, chest, hip and back. A 19-year-old, named as Fulkan Dogan, who also has US citizenship, was shot five times from less that 45cm, in the face, in the back of the head, twice in the leg and once in the back. Two other men were shot four times, and five of the victims were shot either in the back of the head or in the back, said Yalcin Buyuk, vice-chairman of the council of forensic medicine.


Full article here

So where are all the news reports detailing the illegal weapons that were found on the ships? It's just another example of the state of Israel acting like bully-boys and them bleating on about being victims of Palestinian terrorism.

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brainisfried
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Icon 1 posted June 06, 2010 08:29      Profile for brainisfried     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
"Activist" music video:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FOGG_osOoVg

I think that's the last time Israeli soldiers will bring paintball guns as their primary weapon to a metal pipe/slingshot/knife fight. Their sidearms proved effective enough after they figured out they'd dropped into a trap though.

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted June 06, 2010 09:46      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
It's curious how polarized people are over this. These people tried to run a blockade, refused to allow their cargo to be inspected and attacked armed soldiers when they were being boarded. How is anyone surprised that some of those people got shot?

The next ship that was intercepted allowed their cargo to be inspected and didn't attack the boarding solders. Amazingly, nobody got shot. Everyone went home uninjured. This is what should have happened in the first place.

The crew of the first ship was acting in a provocative manner. They intentionally brought about a conflict between themselves and the military. Could the military have reacted with more restraint? Of course. But at the same time, the crew of the first ship didn't have to force a violent conflict. Both sides are guilty of causing those deaths.

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In better news, the Egyptian government has opened their border and they are saying that they will allow people, food, medical and humanitarian supplies to go through without restriction. Whether it will be permanently opened as they say remains to be seen, but this is definitely an improvement for the Palestinians.

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted June 06, 2010 10:05      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I am doubtful that we will ever learn what really happened. No matter which way you cut it, it looks bad. But, then again, those who forget their history are doomed to repeat it. And the last time this happened, it was arguably at least partially orchestrated by the would-be blockade runners to create a PR nightmare that turned out to be a complete game-changer in the Near East.

Anyway, I'll just leave this other nugget here to be chewed on (emphasis mine):
quote:
“I don’t deny that in the fighting some of them were using some of the weapons they’ve been showing on TV now, like the slingshot or the hatchets,” he said. “But don’t forget that the Israelis attacked us in international waters. According to international law, you’re allowed to defend yourself when you get attacked.”
Finally, does anyone know what was on the aid ships? And I mean actual knowledge, not speculations and guesses. Like a manifest or something?

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And it's one, two, three / On the wrong side of the lee / What were you meant for? / What were you meant for?
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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted June 06, 2010 10:49      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
I don't think there's been a manifest released but quite a bit of detail can be found here.

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spungo
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Icon 1 posted June 06, 2010 10:54      Profile for spungo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Erbo -- an uninvited boarding of a vessel in international waters is piracy. Howvere, granted, this is not black and white -- Canada did the same thing a while back with a Spanish trawler, as I recall, but on that occasion I don't believe anyone was shot. Coalition forces are doing it all the time in the Gulf, but generally don't seek to shoot anyone. The trouble with the Israelis is that they have this reputation of being trigger-happy -- just look at how many peace-keepers and unarmed types get shot by their troops every year.

I don't believe anything either side says, as the Middle East is the bullshit capital of the Earth. Fact is: people died because the Israelis went in heavy-handed and typically gung-ho. They caused the fiasco, and for that they deserve the blame.

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Shameless plug. (Please forgive me.)

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted June 07, 2010 03:06      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
How depressingly predictable all this is. Israel behaves outrageously. There is some on the whole fairly measured criticism, and their reaction is belligerently intransigent, and the US right as always is 100% behind them. Maybe this is piracy, or perhaps it was legal, but it was simply not the right way to enforce an arms embargo. I fundamentally disagree with the view approvingly quoted by Erbo that Israel's critics support her enemies, (and incidentally I also believe we are making arguments, rather than howling).

Erbo & brainisfried, does it occur to you that the US right's depressingly predictable knee jerk support for everything Israel does, however egregious, denies you your own intelectual and moral credibility. Try to imagine for a minute what your reaction would be if it was some other Mediterranean nation that had done this, say Turkey or Greece. Why does Israel always get a free pass from you, and exactly how badly would they have to behave before you express any doubts as to the rightness of their actions?

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brainisfried
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Icon 1 posted June 07, 2010 09:29      Profile for brainisfried     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
If Turkey had a neighboring territory that was sending thousands of shrapnel-laden rockets and suicide bombers into their nation that territory would have been annihilated long ago, thus removing the need for a mere blockade. No Muslim nation, even modern Turkey, would tolerate such nonsense if they had the military power to eliminate it.

All the Palestinians have to do is stop behaving like medieval nutjobs and they'll have peace. So long as they insist on their goal of driving Israel into the sea the Israelis will block them from importing (Iranian) weaponry as best they can.

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Callipygous
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Icon 1 posted June 07, 2010 15:52      Profile for Callipygous     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
brainisfried your answer is exactly what I expected. I could have written it for you. You should try travelling in this part of the world before you categorise the people there so blithely. Hint - the world is only black and white in stories.

I'm bored. Perhaps it's time for a threadjack
quote:
Originally posted by fs:
In an interesting side note, Swedish crime writer Henning Mankell was one of the activists with the flotilla.

Does anyone want to bet on what happens in his next book?

Recently I have become quite addicted to the TV series of Mankell's "Wallander". I haven't seen the UK version, and am pretty sure that I wouldn't like it, simply because the Swedish original is so unbelievably good. Great understated performances from all the cast, and each 1 ½ hour episode is beautifully shot and edited. It is a police procedural, but in some ways the eponymous hero has more in common with the hard boiled private eyes of Raymond Chandler or Dalshiell Hammett, and the actor has a wonderful world weary lived in face. Absolutely compulsive viewing.

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"Knowledge is Power. France is Bacon" - Milton

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Grummash

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Icon 1 posted June 07, 2010 17:35      Profile for Grummash     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Calli - please forgive me, but I would like to swerve your well-judged thread-jack and re-visit a question I asked earlier in the thread...

quote:
originally posted by me...
So where are all the news reports detailing the illegal weapons that were found on the ships?

The Sunday Times (not, I freely admit,the best model of journalistic veracity- however, their reporting on this story includes multiple eye-witness, "I was there", accounts) summarises the haul of recovered illegal weapons as... in essence... a non-projectile stun device, a broken bottle and a stick (shared between some 600 "terrorists").

In that context, you can understand why the IDF shot nine civilians, some elderly, in the face or in the back, or both, at point-blank range.

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted June 07, 2010 17:46      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
So... what are these? Sticks, broken bottles or stun devices?

 -

(image taken from the link I posted earlier)

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Xanthine

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Icon 1 posted June 07, 2010 18:17      Profile for Xanthine     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Just about anything can be a weapon if its used with the right mindset which is what makes drawing the line so tough. Some things, like swords or handguns, have no purpose on this earth other than to end human lives, but for a lot of other things it's more murky. A knife is one of those things that's on the border between being a necessary tool and a weapon meant to kill people. In that selection above, some of those blades are obviously meant for use in the kitchen (or galley as the case may be), others look to be of the varieties popular with outdoorspeople and others look like they were certainly made to kill people. If the people those kitchen knives or utility knives were taken off of were using them to slice live humans, then it would be right to call them weapons. If they just rummaged through the ship's galley and cabins and threw those blades in the weapons pile, that's another story.

All that aside, you can't kill more than one person at a time with a knife. I don't think they're exactly the weapon of choice for a terrorist bent on creating mayhem.

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GrumpySteen

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Icon 1 posted June 08, 2010 00:14      Profile for GrumpySteen     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
The people on board the ship were idiots, not terrorists, and the knives weren't cargo. They were some of the weapons used to attack the soldiers. The photo does rather firmly put an end to the suggestion the only weapons on board were a broken bottle, a stick and a stun gun.

The fact is that the boarding Israelis didn't know what the cargo was* and the crew of the ship was refusing to allow it to be inspected. It shouldn't come as a surprise that they weren't allowed to pass through without having their cargo inspected. The whole point of a blockade is to block things from being brought across and that's impossible to do without inspections**.

When the soldiers started boarding the ship to inspect the cargo, the ship's crew took up knives and pipes and sticks and attacked them, stabbing at least one and throwing at least one overboard. It shouldn't come as a surprise that solders will open fire when attacked by a violent, armed mob.

Israel is causing a great deal of needless suffering that the world should be more aware of. The shooting of nine idiots who were part of a violent mob that attacked military personnel, however, is just not going to be seen as a heinous crime. To many people, in fact, it looks justifiable***.

If you want to show Israel as a villain, bring up the unprovoked attacks they've made on Palestine territories, the excessive range of goods they've been blocking and the expense and length of time it takes to get anything that's not blocked into the Palestine territories. Those are the real injustices that are going on.

* The cargo was later shown to have largely been legal and would have been allowed in. The only things that would have been blocked were the concrete and steel building supplies. The only reason I can think of for refusing to allow it to be inspected was to provoke a confrontation.

** The legality of the blockade is another matter. It's being conducted further from shores than is normal which is illegal in some sets of maritime law and legal in others. There isn't a single, unified set of maritime laws that everyone has agreed to abide by and I have no clue which ones apply to Israel and which do not.

*** I don't condone killing, but I wasn't there and can't tell if the soldiers thought their lives were in danger. With one soldier stabbed and another thrown overboard, however, it's unreasonable to suggest that they had no reason to think they were in danger.

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brainisfried
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Icon 1 posted June 08, 2010 08:07      Profile for brainisfried     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
Two good articles:
http://www.atimes.com/atimes/Middle_East/LF02Ak03.html
http://www.stratfor.com/weekly/20100607_limits_public_opinion_arabs_israelis_and_strategic_balance

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Erbo
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Icon 1 posted June 08, 2010 23:13      Profile for Erbo     Send New Private Message       Edit/Delete Post   Reply With Quote 
"Just because Israel does it, does not make the action morally right." Granted. But you must also then grant the converse: just because Israel does it, does not make the action morally wrong. (The latter is the line being taken by most liberals around the world, incidentally.)

As for the force that was used by the Israelis...it is my understanding that, when they boarded the ship to demand search, they were not only refused, but threatened with knives, clubs, and similar weaponry, almost certainly with lethal intent. Are Israeli soldiers required to have several of their number wounded or killed before making the determination that a threat to life and limb exists, for which a response with deadly force is justified?

As to the location of that blockade...during the Cuban Missile Crisis in 1962, the U.S. Navy conducted a blockade of Cuba, said blockade being in "international waters," at a distance from Cuban territory comparable to the distance of the Israeli blockade from Gaza. Was the U.S. justified in doing so? Careful how you answer; a wrong guess at that time could have resulted in a nuclear strike against American territory, with commensurate retaliatory strikes against the Soviet Union. You can figure things any number of ways from there...all bad.

Now a little more exposition as to the rules involved:

The San Remo Manual I mentioned above, fully cited as "The San Remo Manual on International Law Applicable to Armed Conflicts at Sea, 12 June 1994", is the same manual carried by U.S. Navy warships, and is a basic text on the subject. Part IV, Section II, paragraph 96 clearly states, "The force maintaining the blockade may be stationed at a distance determined by military requirements." (A full copy of the San Remo Manual, posted by the International Committee of the Red Cross, may be viewed here.)

Under the rules, Israel is obligated to let through food and medical supplies (paragraphs 103-104), but these are explicitly "subject to the right to prescribe technical arrangements, including search, under which such passage is permitted." Which they are complying with.

Finally, I will note, sadly, that American support for Israel is not as much a "given" as it once was. Charles Krauthammer reports that President Obama has reversed forty years of standing U.S. policy by "signing onto a consensus document that singles out Israel's possession of nuclear weapons--thus de-legitimizing Israel's very last line of defense: deterrence."

Seems the world just doesn't like those six million or so Jews in Israel standing up for themselves. Six million...hmm, why does that number sound so familiar?

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