The Week Between Hell and Heaven
3 hours ago
For those who are home, and for those who are on the way. For those who support the historic and just return of the land of Israel to its people, forever loyal to their inheritance, and its restoration.
One of the organisers of the flotilla, which includes three vessels from Turkey, is IHH, a humanitarian aid group supported by Ankara.
During the boarding of the ships, the demonstrators onboard attacked the IDF Naval personnel with live fire and light weaponry including knives and clubs. Additionally one of the weapons used was grabbed from an IDF soldier. The demonstrators had clearly prepared their weapons in advance for this specific purpose.
As a result of this life-threatening and violent activity, naval forces employed riot dispersal means, including live fire.
According to initial reports, these events resulted in over ten deaths among the demonstrators and numerous injured, in addition, more than four naval personnel were injured, some from gunfire and some from various other weapons. Two of the soldiers are moderately wounded and the remainder sustained light injuries. All of the injured, Israelis and foreigners are currently being evacuated by helicopter to hospitals in Israel.
Israel Defense Force Spokesperson
"We don't have a problem whatsoever with the United States or with American interests," Khaled Meshaal told PBS television in an interview.
"America is a great state, a superpower," he continued.
"But its interest should not be at the expense of the interests of others and the peoples of in the region."
In the approaching clash, the complex system of alliances and counter-alliances of the Middle East is beginning to emerge. It does not appear to be coincidental that the Islamist governing party in Turkey is involved, behind the scenes, in dispatching the flotilla, in coordination with Hamas in the Gaza Strip. At the same time it is doubtful that it is coincidental that the Israel Air Force held this week exercises with Greece, the traditional rival of Turkey, of the sort that two years ago were carried out mostly in Turkey.
… the Israeli government knows exactly the price it must pay to free Shalit. It has already conducted indirect negotiations with Hamas and even announced that it was willing to release a large number of prisoners who are members of the Islamic group. The deal has been held up due to a number of prisoners who committed extremely serious crimes whom Israel refuses to release. Israel’s firm refusal to free those prisoners is becoming its most costly move so far.
The aid is supposed to prepare the Palestinians for a peace treaty with Israel that will give them their own state, but "if that isn't coming then I can see a number of questions," said Christian Berger, the EU's representative in Jerusalem. … A delegation from the European Parliament is visiting Israel and the Palestinian territories this week and would certainly be asking "if at the end of the day we don't have a state, then what are we doing with the money," Berger added.
The Prime Minister’s office on Saturday called the resolution adopted by the NPT Review Conference on a nuclear free Middle East in 2012 “deeply flawed and hypocritical,” saying it “ignores the realities of the Middle East and the real threats facing the region and the entire world.”
The resolution singles out Israel, calling on it to accede to the Nuclear Non Proliferation Treaty (NPT) and to allow inspection of its nuclear sites…
“As a non-signatory state of the NPT, Israel is not obligated by the decisions of this Conference, which has no authority over Israel. Given the distorted nature of this resolution, Israel will not be able to take part in its implementation,” the statement concluded.
Much of our strategy toward the Arab-Israeli conflict has been predicated on the assumption that a strong and moderate Israeli government would at some point be able to make difficult decisions on territory and on the Palestinians. Now we face the prospect of a very weak coalition, a prolonged period of uncertainty, and an Israeli leadership which may be significantly more assertive in its policies concerning the West Bank, Palestinians, settlements, and nuclear weapons.
The Arabs will no doubt read the Israeli election results as signifying an end to the chance of getting to Geneva this year, and possibly the end of any hope for a political settlement, and we may see them begin to take out insurance by patching up quarrels with the Soviets, digging in their heels on peace terms , and acting more belligerently on oil prices.
The eight ships, organized by an international group called the Free Gaza Movement, are carrying about 10,000 tons of cargo, including cement for rebuilding homes destroyed by war in Gaza, medical equipment and school supplies.
The ships are carrying 5,000 tons of construction materials, medical equipment, and school supplies, as well as around 600 people from 40 countries. "
The nine boats are due to arrive in Gaza next week with 5,000 tons of reconstruction material, medical equipment and school supplies.
Amnesty International’s ideological bias and double standards were exposed by the suspension of senior staff member Gita Saghal, after she condemned Amnesty’s alliance with an alleged Taliban supporter. “Like all tyrants - whether of the right and left, Amnesty International raised the spectre of an assault on human rights to avoid answering questions and to imply that Amnesty International was under attack.”
Longtime Secretary General Irene Khan left Amnesty in December 2009. Her interim replacement, Claudio Cordone, was centrally involved in the Gita Saghal controversy including the response that “jihad in self-defence” is not “antithetical to human rights.”
In the Middle East, while Amnesty’s main focus in 2009 was Iran’s post-election crisis, arrests, and executions, Israel and the January 2009 Gaza war were given disproportionate and distorted attention.
During the war, AI led NGO campaigns accusing Israel of “unlawful,” “disproportionate,” and “indiscriminate” attacks against Palestinian civilians, releasing more than 20 statements criticizing Israel.
After the war, AI called for an arms embargo against Israel, continued to promote “lawfare” against Israeli officials, and labeled Israel’s treatment of Gaza as “collective punishment under international law.”
Analysis of AI’s 2009 Middle East activities reflects a disproportionate and unjustified focus on Israel. AI issued more in-depth reports (seven) on Israel than on any other country in the region.
The data indicate that ideology, rather than universal human rights, continues to propel AI’s resource allocation. With the exception of Iran, AI devotes little coverage to other chronic Mideast human rights abusers.
AI’s October 2009 report “Troubled Waters – Palestinians Denied Fair Access to Water,” coincided with a campaign alleging that “Israel’s Control of Water [is] a Tool of Apartheid and a Means of Ethnic Cleansing.”
The sections in AI’s Annual Report for 2009 on the Palestinians include token mentions of kidnapped Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit and condemnation of indiscriminate missile attacks from Gaza, without significant “action items,” in contrast to the targeting of Israel.
This analysis of Amnesty’s 2009 activities demonstrates the continued exploitation of human rights principles, and the degradation of these moral values.