Wednesday, 2 June 2010

Israel Schmisrael

There's a nice piece of sarcasm written by Mark Steel in today's Independent, in which he lets rip at the Israelis over their attack on the aid convoy heading for Gaza.
Whether you are pro-Palestinian, pro-Israeli or are are just fed up with the whole lot of them, I don't see how this attack by Israel can be justified. It wasn't a surprise; they knew who was on board and that they weren't armed; and that they were only carrying 'humanitarian aid' - not weapons. So why send in an elite commando force, armed to the teeth, in a dramatic helicopter-launched trigger-happy assault? Maybe somebody has been watching too many Hollywood macho movies.
Someone should be put on trial for this. And the irony is that Israel's action will only serve to further polarise the situation and recruit people to the Palestinian's cause.
Addendum: The Greek Cypriots have a different angle on this, arising from their distrust of the Turks. They question why the Turks, who have rarely been known to help  anyone except themselves, should want to get involved in a 'humanitarian aid' operation. It seems the flotilla originally intended to embark from Larnaca but, because the Cyprus Government is involved in delicate negotiations with the Israeli Government over drilling rights in the Mediterranean, permission was refused. So instead the flotilla embarked from Famagusta which is in the Turkish-occupied territory and an 'illegal port' i.e. not officially recognised by any country except Turkey so no ships except Turkish ones ever call there. The Greek Cypriot view is that Turkey wanted to encourage the use of Famagusta in order to help render it de facto a legitimate port.

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