Tuesday, 1 June 2010

2,000 Israelis protest against Gaza Freedom Flotilla massacre

Tel Aviv - Ma'an - Some 2,000 demonstrators gathered outside Israel's Ministry of Defense late Monday to protest the military's violent raid on an aid flotilla that attempted to break the country's years-long siege on the Gaza Strip.

Approximately 100 Tel Aviv and border police officers were present and one left-wing activist, Matan Cohen, was arrested. A few dozen right-wing Israelis staged a counter-protest, but police generally kept them from interfering with the leftists' demonstration.

Air strike kills 3 near Beit Lahiya in northern Gaza

Three people have been killed in Israeli air strikes today - don't expect this to be reported very widely in western media that doesn't seem to know a massacre when it sees one. Meanwhile Egypt has reopened the Rafah crossing, presumably deciding that it's alliance with Israel and this juncture is not particularly flattering.
Gaza - Ma'an - Medics in the Gaza Strip confirmed three dead following an Israeli air strike on the northern Strip near the town of Beit Lahiya on Tuesday afternoon.

An Israeli military source said planes were aiming for a "clear target" in the area, and pilots noted "secondary explosions" following the bombing. more

Returning flotilla activists say ship turned into lake of blood by IDF beatings

Still no news on UK activists beyond Ma'an news agency reporting 12 injured earlier today on their ticker but with no link. Middle East News blog has a report on one Briton that was injured but no name is given.
BERLIN — Pro-Palestinian activists returning to Europe said Israeli commandos used stun guns on passengers and beat them during the deadly raid on an aid flotilla that was trying to break Israel’s blockade of Gaza. One woman said her aid ship “turned into a lake of blood.”

Five Germans, six Greeks and several others — among them a Turkish woman and her 1-year-old baby — were released Tuesday, but Israel barred access to hundreds of other activists seized during the raid Monday that killed at least nine people and wounded dozens.

Israel sent commandos onto six ships carrying nearly 700 activists, and there have been conflicting accounts of what happened during the assault. Most of those killed were aboard the Turkish-flagged ship Mavi Marmara.

Norman Paech, a former member of Germany’s Left Party who was aboard the Marmara, said the ship was surrounded by small Israeli assault boats about 4:30 a.m. Monday morning.

“Moments later, we heard detonations and then soldiers from helicopters above us dropped down on board,” Paech said. “The soldiers were all masked, carrying big guns and were extremely brutal.”

The Israeli government says its soldiers were defending themselves, and has released video showing soldiers in riot gear being struck by activists with sticks — and one soldier appears to have been shoved into the water. Israel says the activists were armed with metal rods, knives, slingshots and two pistols snatched from the troops.

When asked about the Israeli video, Paech said he only saw three activists resisting.

“They had no knives, no axes, only sticks that they used to defend themselves,” Paech said at a news conference in Berlin at the Reichstag, where the lower house of parliament meets, after he and four other Germans returned Tuesday from Tel Aviv. more

Rachel Corrie ship on course for Gaza

The MV Rachel Corrie Photo: Freegazaorg


Rachel Corrie ship still sailing to Gaza - left Malta about an hour ago. Corrie ship (1,200 ton cargo), with 15 activists including Mairead Maguire & Denis Halliday, set off from Malta to Gaza.

Second UK march to protest flotilla killings - 5 June

GAZA UPDATE: London Protest Tuesday 1 June: Israeli Embassy, High St Kensington 5.30pm

Saturday 5 June • Gaza Flotilla March • End the Siege of Gaza: Freedom for Palestine

Assemble Downing Street • London • 1.30pm • March to the Israeli Embassy
Called by Stop the War Coalition, Palestine Solidarity Campaign, British Muslim Initiative, CND & Viva Palestina

Egypt's Gaza flotilla massacre protests turn fire on US-backed dictator Mubarak



Nyahahahah.. the cowards… So, during the evening Palestine protest in Ramses, whenever the Socialists chanted “down with Mubarak,” followed by young MBs, you can see in the video MB organizers waving “No” trying to suppress the chants and change them… Some of their members might have chanted in the morning “Down with Mubarak,” but the group’s main leadership remains timid, coward, and compromising till the end vis a vis the regime…

From 3Arabawy

List of 28 UK nationals on assaulted Gaza convoy ship Mavi Marmara

Muslim News releases list of passengers on the Mavi Marmara
List of British citizens on Mavi Marmara where the Israeli raid took place and 19 of the passengers killed: Laura Macdonald Stuart, Ebrahim Musaji, Jamal Sayed, PARVEEN YAQUB, Baboo ADEM Zanghar, Ahsan Shamruk, Mustafa Cengiz Ahmet, Tauqir Sharif, BOUDJEMA BOUNOUA,
Mohammad BOUNOUA, Sakir Yildirim, Kenneth O’Keefe, Ali El-Awaisi, Mohammed Bhaiyat, Lort Phillips Alexandra Mary, Sarah Nancy Colborne, Ismail Adam Patel, Nader Daher, Mahi Mohammed Abid,
Nur-E-Azom Choudhury, Ovenden Kevin, Peter Venner, Clifford Gardner Hanley, Muzzammil Layth Chogley, Jamaluddin Mohammad Farid Elshayyal, Hassan Al Banna Ghani, Lazrag Salah, Ali Altan,

US activist loses eye in IDF asssault on peaceful West Bank demo


And on the West Bank in the ongoing non-violent struggle that is routinely met with lethal force, another US activist has been seriously injured, losing an eye after being shot in the face with a tear gas canister, and still the US does nothing... Rachel Corrie (dead), Tristan Anderson (brain injuries) and Emily Henochowicz(lost and eye).
31 May 2010: An American solidarity activist was shot in the face with a tear gas canister during a demonstration in Qalandiya, today. Emily Henochowicz is currently in Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem undergoing surgery to remove her left eye, following the demonstration that was held in protest to Israel’s murder of at least 10 civilians aboard the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in international waters this morning.

21-year old Emily Henochowicz was hit in the face with a tear gas projectile fired directly at her by an Israeli soldier during the demonstration at Qalandiya checkpoint today. Israeli occupation forces fired volleys of tear gas at unarmed Palestinian and international protesters, causing mass panic amongst the demonstrators and those queuing at the largest checkpoint separating the West Bank and Israel.

Crisis in Israel as attack on Gaza convoy heightens isolation, embarasses allies

From Haaretz
Endless questions are being asked. What happened to Israel's vaunted creativity? Why was the worst of all possible options chosen? Where was the army chief of staff? Where were the intelligence services? Why did we walk into this trap, which we managed to avoid in all the years of the second intifada, with our eyes open? Why didn't we see that instead of tightening the siege on Gaza, we were about to tighten the siege on ourselves?

Perhaps the most troubling question in the wake of this fiasco on the high sea is this: Who is navigating our ship of state, and toward what catastrophe are the captains of this ship of fools steering us?

IDF incursion sees two Palestinian fighters killed near border

Two killed after Israel claims they had 'identified infiltrators' on the Gaza border. In fact it was Israel that made the incursion, and as usual, did the killing. Overnight, the Fatah aligned al-Aqsa brigades fired a rocket that landed harmlessly in the Negev desert.
Gaza - Ma'an - Israeli forces entered Gaza east of Khan Younis and exchanged fire with fighters near the border, with two reported dead according to Israeli media.

Witnesses said Israeli forces shelled the area, hitting agricultural lands in the area of the sealed Kissufim crossing, and entered into Gaza proximately 100 meters.

An Israeli military spokeswoman said soldiers "identified two infiltrators" near the border, and said she could not comment on how the two were attempting to enter Israel. more

Remaining two flotilla boats head for Gaza - UN condemns Israel



freegazaorg on twitter
Israel has refused our lawyers contact with passengers. No contact with any of them since 3:30 am yesterday. None. Zero. Zip. #Flotilla

"Alleged" Israeli military video of passengers attacking has no time stamp. Wonder why? http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XAMFnu8ZBwk
Israeli spin. Video showing weapons on board to be sling shots and marbles. Injured are more likely the passengers since no faces are seen
UN Security council condemns the attack, which is nice but always ineffectual. It's also calling for 'an impartial investigation'. US president Obama declines to condemn the massacre. No sanctions yet for piracy and murder on the high seas. More importantly the response around the world to the latest outrage has been angry and militant and is continuing to grow.

The remaining two ships of the flotilla are continuing on to Gaza. The video should help to remind the western powers that they have an obligation to prevent piracy, as they do attempt to do in the international waters off Somalia.



There are now reports of 12 UK injured. One activist has been detained in Tel Aviv. There has still been no release of a proper casualty list by the Israelis . See report at Ma'an news

And on the West Bank in the ongoing non-violent struggle that is routinely met with lethal force, another US activist has been seriously injured, losing an eye after being shot in the face with a tear gas canister, and still the US does nothing... Rachel Corrie (dead), Tristan Anderson (brain injuries) and Emily Henochowicz(lost and eye).
31 May 2010: An American solidarity activist was shot in the face with a tear gas canister during a demonstration in Qalandiya, today. Emily Henochowicz is currently in Hadassah Hospital in Jerusalem undergoing surgery to remove her left eye, following the demonstration that was held in protest to Israel’s murder of at least 10 civilians aboard the Gaza Freedom Flotilla in international waters this morning.

21-year old Emily Henochowicz was hit in the face with a tear gas projectile fired directly at her by an Israeli soldier during the demonstration at Qalandiya checkpoint today. Israeli occupation forces fired volleys of tear gas at unarmed Palestinian and international protesters, causing mass panic amongst the demonstrators and those queuing at the largest checkpoint separating the West Bank and Israel.