Four years ago, Palestinians in Gaza ended the year in a similar way. Following a cease-fire after the last war in November, Israel violated terms of the truce numerous times and on a daily basis. Gaza also remains under Israeli siege, making life more difficult.
On my first day in Cuba, in 1967, I waited in a bus queue that was really a conga line. Ahead of me were two large, funny females resplendent in frills of blinding yellow; one of them had an especially long bongo under her arm. When the bus arrived, painted in Cuba’s colors for its inaugural service, they announced that the gringo had not long arrived from London and was, therefore, personally responsible for this breach in the American blockade. It was an honor I could not refuse.
The International Solidarity Movement (ISM) is a Palestinian led movement committed to solving issues between Israel and Palestine. Huwaida Arraf is one of the co-founders of the group and was filmed giving a speech at San Diego State University. During her speech, Huwaida talks about the history of the Palestinian people and the ISM’s role in trying to aid them. Also mentioned in her speech is the ISM’s attempts in sending aid to Gaza by boat. In one of their more recent voyages the group sent a ‘flotilla’ of ships to gaza that was intercepted by the Israeli Navy. During the interception civilians were shot and killed on one of the ISM’s boats which lead to an investigation by the United Nations.
Contact: Adam Shapiro, +30-694-781-5798, firstname.lastname@example.org
Huwaida Arraf, +30-694-781-5798, email@example.com
Greta Berlin, +33 607 374 512, Iristulip@gmail.com
Israel’s announcement today that it is “allowing between 210 and 220” trucks into Gaza with humanitarian aid is a direct response to the pressure that the upcoming Freedom Flotilla II is creating. Continue reading →
In “The Legal Basis of Israel’s Naval Blockade of Gaza” at the Jerusalem Center for Public Affairs (JCPA), Professor Emeritus of International Law at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem Ruth Lapidoth argues that Israel’s attack on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, in which nine Turkish peace activists were killed by Israeli commandos, was perfectly “legal”.
Lapidoth begins by arguing that “the rules of the laws of armed conflict apply” to the “armed conflict” between Israel and Hamas. From this, Lapidoth draws the conclusion that, “This means that Israel may control shipping headed for Gaza—even when the vessels are still on the high seas.”
The Libyan aid ship, the Amalthea, originally bound for the Gaza strip, has been diverted to a port in Egypt after the Israeli navy warned the vessel against trying to break an Israeli blockade on the Palestinian coastal territory, and is now moving very slowly towards El Arish port.
An Al Jazeera reporter on board said the vessel, carrying 2,000 tonnes of food and medicine, was met by a “wall” of Israeli gunships as it approached the Palestinian territory.
Maybe he is a dollar short and a day late, but at least Obama is addressing the problems in Gaza instead of burying his head in the sand like every American President except Carter. His new found temerity in the face of Israeli influence in American politics may just be for show to placate those who are rightfully outraged over Israel’s wanton barbarism against the flotilla bringing relief supplies to Gaza, but even so, he is taking a risk. The Israeli zealots in Congress from both parties will castigate him for even suggesting that the treatment of Gaza is something that needs to be reviewed.
By Sheera Frenkel
June 9, 2010
JERUSALEM — As Israel ordered a slight easing of its blockade of the Gaza Strip Wednesday, McClatchy obtained an Israeli government document that describes the blockade not as a security measure but as “economic warfare” against the Islamist group Hamas, which rules the Palestinian territory.
June 03, 2010 — Though international criticism has been mounting against Israel’s raid on civilian aid ships bound for Gaza, reaction from the United States has been cautious.
Glenn Greenwald, a former constitutional lawyer and civil rights litigator, said this muted response is due to the “huge political price” US politicians must pay for being seen as adversarial to Israel.
In an interview with Al Jazeera, Greenwald, a contributing editor for Salon.com, said what is clear is that the Obama administration has given its full support to the Israeli government once again.
(Cyprus, June 4, 2010) On Tuesday,, Colonel Itzik Tourgeman told the Knesset Defense and Foreign Affairs Committee on Tuesday that two more ships are on their way to try and break the naval blockade of Gaza. The head of research in the operations division said, “The ships have not reached their target as of today because covert action was taken against them.” http://www.israelnationalnews.com/News/Flash.aspx/187299
We had suspicions about our two boats, Challenger 1 and 2 and their mechanical problems as they sailed toward the flotilla, but we were not going to say anything unless we could prove it. Turns out we didn’t have to prove it. Israeli mouthpieces did.