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I have a parallel blog in French at http://anniebannie.net

Month

May 2010

People of the U.S. and the world must end Israeli impunity now!

Cynthia McKinney Mourns the Dead of the Freedom Flotilla to Gaza:

I am outraged at Israel’s latest criminal act. I mourn with my fellow Free Gaza travelers, the lives that have been lost by Israel’s needless, senseless act against unarmed humanitarian activists. But I’m even more outraged that once again, Israel’s actions have been aided and abetted by a U.S. political class that has become corrupted beyond belief due to its reliance on Zionist campaign finance and penetration by Zionist zealots for whom no U.S. weapons system is too much for the Israeli war machine, and the silence of the world’s onlookers whose hearts have grown cold with indifference.

I recently visited the offices of IHH, the Turkish humanitarian organization that sponsored one of the Freedom Flotilla boats, and that was targeted by the Israelis for its murderous rampage. Reports are still coming in as to the full extent of the senseless Israeli violence. Of course, I expect Israel’s apologists in the press and in the United States government to shift into high gear to support Israel’s lying machine. Take note of their names. The 12,000 internet squatters/written word grenade throwers, hired by the Israeli Foreign Ministry to defend Israel and attack peace activists online, are already busy spreading their orchestrated disinformation in cyberspace. Be very careful what you read and believe from special interest press and the internet. You could be reading one of Israel’s hired hacks. As a news diversion from what Israel has just done, I suspect that we can also expect to see a lot of historical footage of war’s atrocities on television: today is Memorial Day in the United States, a day long ago set aside to remember the sacrifices of U.S. war dead.

I encouraged and supported U.S.S. Liberty veteran Joe Meadors’s participation in the Freedom Flotilla. Unfortunately, the fate of the U.S.S. Liberty innocents on the high seas, while in international waters, has now been visited upon the participants in the Freedom Flotilla, in large measure because of the Congressional- and Presidential-level cover-up of the 1967 Israeli attack on that U.S. surveillance ship. Combined with the failure of just about every other effort to hold Israel accountable for its crimes against humanity, war crimes, genocide, and crimes against the peace. Belgium and Spain changed their domestic laws of universal jurisdiction after Israeli appeals to do so. The entire musical chairs gang of rotating Israeli leadership are war criminals. During my imprisonment in Israel for attempting to take crayons to the children of Gaza, I called Israel a failed state. If Israel is threatened by unarmed, humanitarian activists to the point of massacring them, then Israel is a failed state. Israel is a failed nuclear state.

Obama’s most recent granting of an additional $205 million for Israeli “missile defense” is unconscionable, when in the same week, reports revealed for the first time, Israel’s offer of nuclear weapons to apartheid South Africa. Just last week, a paper bearing the signature of former Israeli Prime Minister, Shimon Peres, was released by South Africa, revealing that in 1975, Israel could offer South Africa nuclear weapons “in three sizes.” South Africa’s then-Minister of Defense, P.W. Botha, was South Africa’s signatory to the letter. This information would make the entire Obama Administration look sadly farcical as it points an accusing finger at Iran, except that U.S. obeisance to the Israeli bloodthirst is deadly serious. With deadly outcomes.

Earlier this month, Israel was granted admission to the Organization of Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD), a direct affront to ongoing Boycott, Divestment, Sanctions (BDS) efforts across the world. Once again, Israel has thumbed its nose at the global community–with bloody results–because it can.

I am proud to serve on the Bertrand Russell Tribunal on Palestine. Its next sitting will be in London, where we will examine corporate complicity in Israel’s crimes against Palestine. The Tribunal will sit from November 5 – 7. Please put this on your calendar. We all must do what we can, where we are to end wars against the people at home and wars against human rights abroad.

Finally, a friend just sent a message to me saying that the Israelis had lost their minds. Sadly, based on the past, the Israelis could very well conclude that they can do anything–imprison me for trying to take love to the children of Gaza and kill humanitarian activists trying to do the same–because they know, in the end, they’ll get away with it. Instead, I would suggest that we are the ones who have lost our minds, our souls, our spirits, and our human dignity if we allow the Israelis to get away with murder–again–and we do nothing.

I am calling on the people of the United States to change course now.

On this Memorial Day 2010, I am stunned and outraged beyond belief while mourning the dead of the Freedom Flotilla to Gaza.


Greta Berlin, Co-Founder
+357 99 18 72 75
witnessgaza.com
http://www.freegaza.org
http://www.flickr.com/photos/freegaza

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Protest in Brussels in front of the Ministry for Foreign Affairs

Sheikh Raed Salah reportedly shot in head, critical

Bethlehem – Ma’an – Sheikh Raed Salah was critically injured by Israeli forces that attacked the Freedom Flotilla Monday morning, and was receiving treatment at Israel’s Tel Hashomer Hospital for gunshot wound to head, sources said.

Israeli military sources said Salah was injured but not critical, and claimed he was not carrying identification.

Salah is the leader of the northern branch of the Islamic Movement in Israel. Massive protests are expected in the north, with Palestinian citizens of Israel already labeling the incident an attempted assassination.

The leader announced his participation in the flotilla at a conference in Germany three weeks ago, where he called on Palestinians in the diaspora to continue to fight for their right of return.

Salah was recently banned from entering the Al-Aqsa Mosque following allegations that he had assaulted an Israeli officer in 2007 during protests at the holy site, where he led activities against Israeli excavations around Al-Aqsa Mosque compound. He called on both Muslim and Christian clerics to hold a meeting in East Jerusalem to put forward their opposition to excavations. However, the meeting was banned by Israeli authorities claiming the organization which behind the event, Al-Aqsa Foundation, was affiliated with Hamas.

Organizers insisted on holding the meeting, and they moved it to another hotel, but Israeli forces intervened and broke up the gathering. Salah then told the British Guardian newspaper “it was a childish behavior on the part of Israeli security forces…”

Salah was acquitted of all charges last month.

In May 2003 Salah was arrested and detained by Israel forces on charges of funding Hamas, serving two years in Israeli jail. Upon his release a travel ban was placed on him, preventing him from leaving Israeli-controlled borders and requiring him to check in with police every month.

Sheikh Salah have made several comments about the Jewish connection with the Western Wall confirming that it was part of Al-Aqsa compound. Salah was quoted by the electronic website of the Israeli newspaper Yedioth Aharonoth as saying “The Western Wall – on all its various parts, structures and gates, and all the names these parts, structures and gates are called – is an inseparable part of the al-Aqsa compound. He who says that the Jews or the Israeli establishment has any right to al-Aqsa, even to just one stone – this is an abominable attack, a falsehood, completely baseless.”
source

Israel Navy Massacres Freedom #Flotilla Passengers in International Waters

justicentric — 31 mai 2010 — Support Freedom Flotilla http://gazafreedommarch.org/cms/en/fl…
In 3 languages, the Israeli Navy massacres 20 unarmed international humanitarian activists in international waters and injures dozens. The Freedom Flotilla had European MPs, priests, people from many nationalities, including Israeli, and 10,000 tons of aid to the 3-year besieged Gaza.

Israeli Butchery at Sea by Gilad Atzmon

As I write this piece the scale of the Israeli lethal slaughter at sea is yet to be clear. However we already know that at around 4am Gaza time, hundreds of IDF commandos stormed the Free Gaza international humanitarian fleet. We learn from the Arab press that at least 16 peace activists have been murdered and more than 50 were injured. Once again it is devastatingly obvious that Israel is not trying to hide its true nature: an inhuman murderous collective fuelled by a psychosis and driven by paranoia.

read on

From the ship at the time of the attack

http://www.haber10.com/haber/204738/

http://www.livestream.com/insaniyardim

Israel attacks Gaza aid fleet

Aid convoy was attacked 65km off the Gaza coast

Israeli forces have attacked a flotilla of aid-carrying ships aiming to break the country’s siege on Gaza.

Up to 16 people were killed and more than 30 people injured when troops stormed the Freedom Flotilla early on Monday, the Israeli Army Radio said.

The flotilla was attacked in international waters, 65km off the Gaza coast.

Footage from the flotilla’s lead vessel, the Mavi Marmara, showed armed Israeli soldiers boarding the ship and helicopters flying overhead.

Al Jazeera’s Jamal Elshayyal, on board the Mavi Marmara, said Israeli troops had used live ammunition during the operation.

The Israeli Army Radio said soldiers opened fire “after confronting those on board carrying sharp objects”.

Free Gaza Movement, the organisers of the flotilla, however, said the troops opened fire as soon as they stormed the ships.

They also said the ships were now being towed to the Israeli town of Haifa, instead of Ashdod to avoid waiting journalists.

Earlier, the Israeli navy had contacted the captain of the Mavi Marmara, asking him to identify himself and say where the ship was headed.

read on

Rattling the Cage: Living it up in Gaza

Gaza is a paradise if Foreign Ministry statements are any indication.

Don’t you just wish you lived in Gaza? Don’t you just envy those people who get to raise their kids amid such abundance? Look at all the stuff they’ve got:

“Truckloads of meat, poultry, fish, dairy products, fruits, vegetables, milk powder, baby food, wheat and other staples arrive in Gaza on a daily basis,” said the Foreign Ministry in advance of the “Freedom Flotilla,” due to either reach Gaza or get intercepted by the navy today.

“Since the cease-fire in January 2009, well over a million tons of humanitarian supplies entered Gaza from Israel – that is almost a ton of aid for each man, woman and child in the Strip.”

A ton each! Somebody put those people on a diet! They get “most types of food,” said the IDF. Most types! Even pasta, ever since Sen. John Kerry went to Gaza last year and found that the IDF was banning pasta, and convinced army officials, softies that they are, to start letting it in.

But the story of life in Gaza gets even happier. In the first quarter of 2010, the IDF said, “Israel transferred 250 trucks of equipment for the UNRWA summer camp, including arts and crafts equipment, swimming pools, inflatable toys, ice cream machines, musical instruments, clothing, sports equipment, etc.”

They eat ice cream, they swim, they play music. Paradise! And look at this: “Special permission was granted to Gaza footballers to train in Judea and Samaria and compete in international matches abroad.”

We even let their soccer team out to play. It took special permission, but hey, for those guys and those fans, if that’s what it takes, that’s what it takes.

SO WHO are these goddamn Jew-haters and their boats, The Rachel Corrie – the “St. Pancake” they should call it. Who are these Nazi human rights organizations? And who is this John Ging, this terrorist who runs UNRWA in Gaza? “We recommend the world send ships to Gaza,” he says. “Breaking the siege on Gaza is possible.”

We should put him on a ship and sink it.

The UN. Anti-Semites, all of them. They try to make everything in Gaza look terrible. Read this garbage by the “UN Office for the Coordinator of Humanitarian Affairs, Occupied Palestinian Territory.” (“Occupied.” I love that.) They put out a report every week about how awful it is for the poor Palestinians. Look at this crap from their last one, for May 12-18:

“Imports of industrial fuel to operate the Gaza power plant further declined this week… this week’s figure represents 27 percent of the actual estimated weekly amount of fuel required for the power plant to operate at full capacity. As a result, the majority of the population continues to experience power cuts of eight to 12 hours per day, forcing them to rely on generators run by fuel… These generators, which are imported largely through tunnels under the Gaza-Egypt border, can be unsafe… [A] generator fire broke out inside a house this week, killing two members of one family and injuring five others. Since the beginning of the year, 31 Palestinians have been killed and 41 others injured in generator-related incidents.”

They’re not careful – that’s our fault? They probably started the fires on purpose to blame it on Israel. Here’s some more garbage:

“Quantities of imported cooking gas also further declined this week… representing only 64% of the average weekly needs… As shortfalls continue, the rationing scheme for cooking gas, introduced in November 2009, remains in place.”

Oh, too bad, they won’t be able to heat their ice cream. A tragedy. Now look what big, bad Israel is doing to the poor fisherman in Gaza:

“Israeli restrictions on Palestinian access to fishing areas beyond three nautical miles from shore also continued to be enforced; in at least two incidents this week, Israeli naval vessels opened ‘warning’ fire toward Palestinian fishing boats, forcing them ashore.”

Do we know these “fishermen” aren’t really terrorists? Can we take a chance? Nobody got killed, did they? Oh, but wait, now read this from the last weekly installment of the UN Protocols of the Elders of Zion:

“Israeli forces shot and killed one elderly Palestinian civilian and injured another one in two separate incidents near the Gaza-Israel border… On 14 May, Israeli forces positioned on the border east of Jabalya shot and killed an elderly Palestinian man while he was visiting the grave of his wife in a cemetery located in the area. In a separate incident, Israeli forces opened fire toward a group of Palestinians collecting rubble near the border, injuring one of them. Israeli forces continue to enforce access restrictions in the ‘buffer zone’ by opening ‘warning’ fire toward people entering the area, affecting farmers and workers, and leveling lands in border areas.”

Well, maybe if the terrorists in Gaza didn’t keep trying to get near the fence and kill our soldiers, we wouldn’t have to shoot old men in cemeteries and kids collecting rubble, would we? (Rubble? They have swimming pools, arts and crafts, musical instruments, and spend their time looking through rubble? A fat lot of good it does trying to help those kids.)

They’re terrorists, doesn’t everybody understand? They try to kill us and we never did anything to them. We got out of Gaza, remember? There’s no more occupation. Finished!

And now the Jew-haters are coming with their boats and their food and their medical aid – to make us look bad! That’s all they want to do. They don’t care about the people in Gaza. The people in Gaza don’t even care about the people in Gaza, about their own children. Only we do. Only Israel cares about those people. Look at all the things we do for them. And the world doesn’t appreciate it. Well, what do you expect?

I only wish somebody would treat us Israelis like we treat people in Gaza.

It’s too bad; we’d give the world a real lesson in how to show appreciation.
source

Galloway supports flotilla

George Galloway founder of the worldwide Viva Palestina movement and leader of three land convoys which broke the siege on Gaza today hailed the heroic sea-borne aid effort steaming towards Gaza.

Speaking from Miami Florida where he is in the middle of a twelve city speaking tour of the US on Palestine Galloway hailed the Turkish humanitarian organisation IHH which has organised and leads the flotilla as “heroes” who are facing the hardships of the seas and the threats of violence from Gaza’s beseigers the Apartheid state of Israel.
Galloway called on all people and governments of goodwill to insist on safe passage for the hundreds of humanitarians on board the ships and the unmolested delivery of the vital aid supplies on board.

Promising on behalf of Viva Palestina Arabia a second sea convoy later in the year – again in partnership with IHH – Galloway thanked the government of Turkey and it’s incomparable prime minister Erdogan for
showing the world the way to peacefully confront the international crime being committed against the people of Palestine.

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