In World War II, with full international legality, the United States blockaded Germany and Japan. And during the October 1962 missile crisis, we blockaded ("quarantined") Cuba. Arms-bearing Russian ships headed to Cuba turned back because the Soviets knew that the U.S. Navy would either board them or sink them. Yet Israel is accused of international criminality for doing precisely what John Kennedy did: impose a naval blockade to prevent a hostile state from acquiring lethal weaponry.Another group of ships is apparently heading to run the blockade, and there are unconfirmed reports from a propaganda outfit that one of the ships the MV Rachel Corrie, has lost contact - claiming that the ship has been sabotaged by Israel.
Oh, but weren't the Gaza-bound ships on a mission of humanitarian relief? No. Otherwise they would have accepted Israel's offer to bring their supplies to an Israeli port, be inspected for military materiel and have the rest trucked by Israel into Gaza -- as every week 10,000 tons of food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are sent by Israel to Gaza.
Why was the offer refused? Because, as organizer Greta Berlin admitted, the flotilla was not about humanitarian relief but about breaking the blockade, i.e., ending Israel's inspection regime, which would mean unlimited shipping into Gaza and thus the unlimited arming of Hamas.
Israel has already twice intercepted ships laden with Iranian arms destined for Hezbollah and Gaza. What country would allow that?
The Telegraph provides a mixed message on the whereabouts of the Corrie (which was named for a pro-Palestinian activist who was killed by an Israeli bulldozer while protecting Palestinian terror tunnels from being destroyed. Pro Palestinian groups claim that they lost contact, but the report goes on to say:
The Free Gaza Movement said that it assumed Israel must have sabotaged systems on board the ship, whose passengers include a Nobel Peace Prize winner and a former UN assistant secretary-general.So, now potential mechanical trouble with a ship that was launched in 1967 (that's more than 40 years old) is treated as Israel sabotaging the boat and its attempt to run a lawful blockade of Gaza. Gotcha.
As a result they plan to pull it back to port and pack it with celebrities and journalists, in a direct challenge to Israel.
The cargo ship, laden with building supplies, cement, medical and educational equipment and wheelchairs as well as Irish and Malaysian activists, set off on Saturday despite warnings from Israel that it would halt any attempt to break the blockade.
The ship is apparently still in contact with someone on board if the Free Gaza activists are planning to pull it back to port and pack it with celebrities and journalists.
Moreover, losing contact could have simply been because the ship was hastily put to sea without the necessary equipment or crew. In fact, earlier this year, a considerable amount of navigational equipment was stolen from the ship while it was in port in Ireland. The report seems to indicate that the ship is seaworthy.
Still, this is nothing more than another propaganda attempt to attack Israel and its lawful right to protect itself from Hamas.
As a reminder - the blockade runners aren't about providing humanitarian aid. They're about running the blockade so that Hamas can resupply with weapons.
The organizers behind the MV Corrie and the other ships refused a deal brokered by the Irish govt to have the ships sail to Ashdod where their cargoes would be transferred to Gaza.
The Irish Foreign Minister, Dr. Michael Martin announced on Friday night that an agreement had been reached with Israel, whereby the Rachel Corrie would proceed to Ashdod where its contents would be checked, unloaded and shipped to Gaza under observation by representatives of the activists, the UN and the Irish government. The activists rejected this offer, continuing to insist on sailing to Gaza and breaking the Israeli blockade, but also stated (according to the Irish FM) that they would not resist the IDF, should it decide to board the ship.
The ship is expected to close in on Gaza Saturday morning. It's the second attempt this week by the Free Gaza Movement to break Israel's naval blockade of Gaza as well as its closure of that area's land passages to all but humanitarian aid.