Tragedy off Gaza [updated]
It’s obviously too early to know just exactly what went on when Israeli commandoes boarded the ill-named freedom flotilla last night, but their tragic overreaction has turned a rag-tag bunch of useful idiots, human shields and publicity-seekers into at least nine dead martyrs Israel could do without.
Yes, Israel was entitled to inspect the boats to ensure they weren’t bringing more rockets to Gaza to be fired into Israel—which was the very real reason for Israel’s blockade on Gaza. But they should have been prepared for some sort of aggressive response from the thugs they should have known would be on board.
Yes, Israel was goaded into the killing (“Right now we face one of two happy endings,” said one woman idiot on board, “either martyrdom or reaching Gaza.”), but their intelligence must have told them that was what the jihadists on board were waiting for.
Yes, it’s true the commandoes were goaded by the so-called peaceful activists chanting “Remember Haibar, Oh, Jews,” a reference to Mohammed’s historic genocide of Jews at Haibar—were attacked by thugs wielding knives, catapults, iron bars, baseball bats, stun grenades and firebombs, and guns ripped from the commando’s hands——were well aware the jihadists on board were using the peaceniks as a cover for something more sinister. But these would have been well-trained troops immune to being taunted by a simple tune, however inflammatory, and well able to assert some sort of firm crowd control on even a reasonably well-prepared and well-armed bunch of jihadists—and given that they knew the whole world would be watching, if they couldn’t, they shouldn’t have been there.
Yes, it’s true that the “aid” the boats were bringing in was not the humanitarian lifeline the flotilla organisers claimed it to be; that Gaza is adequately supplied in most of the things it can afford, thank you very much, including arms; that the flotilla was not manned just by innocent, civilian humanitarians; that it was fully intended to be a provocation to intafada; but the commando’s ill-advised overreaction shows they took the bait, turning this ill-starred publicity stunt into something much more tragic all round.
Israel, it seems, was provoked into exactly the reaction that Hamas and its fellow-travellers would have been hoping for with this flotilla, even as the jihadists cried crocodile tears over the dead and wounded they themselves helped put in harm’s way, and the . But this deadly overreaction will win Israel few friends, and has left at least nine people dead.
Tragic. Just tragic.
UPDATE: What exactly happened on board is still largely unknown, but the aftermath to it is oh so predictable.
“Now that the thugs on board the Mavi Marvara have gotten the violence they wanted and instigated, the second stage of Hamas's operation has begun: protests against Israel around the world .”
These are people who think the BBC is pro-Israeli, for goodness’ sake.
“Enraged by the BBC's bias against them, supporters of the Jihad Flotilla storm the BBC offices in Manchester…”
And don’t think the propaganda war isn’t important.
Will those applying the pressure on Israel last night apply it the other way when the lifting of the blockade sees an avalanche of rockets heading towards Israel out of Gaza?