Flotilla attack, day 3 | Waiting for the US, as more ships are headed to Gaza

Posted: June 2nd, 2010 | Author: | Filed under: In the News, the US and us, war | Tags: , , , , , , , | 8 Comments »

Almost a riot in the Knessset as Jewish house members try to prevent Arab MK Zoabi from speaking:

Israelis behind the government, for now: Maariv daily paper published a poll in the morning, showing that 63 percent of the Jewish public think that the flotilla should have been stopped by other means, and that about half the public think Israel should establish its own inquiry committee to investigate the events at sea.

Still, support for Defense Minister Ehud Barak and Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu remains high, and a clear majority thinks that none of them should resign. This figure, however, might be a bit misleading. At times of national crisis or under international pressure the Jewish public in Israeli tends to rally behind its leaders and generals. Only later, when the initial shock passes, people start asking questions. They don’t necessarily become more dovish – quite the opposite sometime – but they might turn their anger at the leaders. This is exactly what happened after the 2006 war in Lebanon.

Media continues not asking questions regarding IDF clips: a new film released today shows activists throw plates and  a firecracker at the soldiers (watch here). but didn’t the IDF earlier claimed the boats arrived only after the commandos dropped on the mavi Marmara? so who took that video from upper deck? If this is confiscated footage, why not say so? (h/t: Dimi Reider).

Update: United Nation says Flotilla journalists’ equipment was confiscated by IDF soldiers.

More ships to come: As the Rachel Corrie makes its way to Gaza. Organizers of the flotilla declared they raised the money for another ship, named Freedom II. There are some indications that Turkey is looking to diffuse the tension with Israel, so it’s not clear whether this ship will sail, but if it does, Israeli and US decision makers will face a major challenge, as the whole world will be closely watching this time. IDF sources boosted earlier this week that they will meet the coming ships with even more force, but these seems like empty words, intended for the ears of the public at home.

Administration under pressure: the flotilla incident caught the White House at a delicate moment. It hard for it to publicly denounce Israel, because the US was part of the failed Gaza policy, and it obviously can’t support it. The ball is in the American court right now: Will they cast their weight behind the calls for an international probe? Will they work to defuse tension between Turkey and Israel? One thing is clear – the White House and State Department need to act, before things escalate even further.

Godlstone report, round II? The UN Human Rights Council is expected to vote on a draft resolution this afternoon, on whether to send an international committee to investigate the circumstances surrounding Israel’s operation on the Gaza-bound flotilla. this is the same UN body which sent the Goldstone comittee to Gaza. I think it might be a good idea to let some other organization lead the investigation this time, so it wouldn’t suffer from the results of delgitimizing campaign Israel initiated against the Goldstone report.

UPDATE: UNHRC resolution regarding investigation passed. US, Netherlands and Canada Italy opposed it.

opinion round-up (I highly recommend the first item):

Fania Oz-Salzberger (daily Beast): “The army in which I served, which will soon enlist my children, is only good for one thing: to fight those who are aiming a gun at me. Not those who dislike me, demonize me, or hope to see me dead.”

Michael Godween (NY Post): President Obama should do what any American president would — protect our friend and ally from the predators who want to devour it.

Michael Tomasky (Guardian): this event really could be a tipping point in America.

Mark Steel (Independent): It’s time the Israeli government’s PR team made the most of its talents, and became available for hire.

Jeremiah Haber (The Magnes Zionist): Once again, you have the “progressive-on-everything-but-Israel” syndrome. When will that change? Probably not for some time now.

One more thing: more than 48 hours have passed since the raid on the Mavi Marmara took place, and Israel still hasn’t released the names and nationality of all casualties.

more opinion, news and video in this morning’s post.


8 Comments on “Flotilla attack, day 3 | Waiting for the US, as more ships are headed to Gaza”

  1. 1 Gert said at 6:17 am on June 2nd, 2010:

    There will be an inquiry, may be even a Goldstone II, but it will change very little: the people worldwide aren’t so much interested in what happened on the boat, blow by blow, shot by shot, as they are in the bigger picture: siege, naval blockade, settlement policy, Israel’s general arrogance and the lies and distortions that are part of its ‘foreign policy’… We’re just not buying it anymore. An ‘internal’ inquiry could even be damaging because it won’t address the wider points and will naturally try and deflect some of the blame…

    In terms of Israel’s gaffes, it’s broken a glass ceiling.

  2. 2 Anna-Marrina said at 9:54 am on June 2nd, 2010:

    Israel is rationaizing and legitimizing Nazism. Very sad.

  3. 3 noam said at 10:04 am on June 2nd, 2010:

    Anna-Marrina: I don’t delete comments here, but I have to say this: what Israel is doing is bad enough, but comparing it to Nazism is morally and historically false in so many ways, even Glen Back would get it. It is also extremely counter-productive, as it divert all discussions. I advise all friends of the Palestinian people to stay on topic, and to respect Godwin’s Law:

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Godwin%27s_law

  4. 4 rick said at 10:27 am on June 2nd, 2010:

    thanks again, noam, good work!
    did you hear anything about the ominous list some arabic bloggers spoke about, saying the idf forces carried a detailed list.. for example zeinobia wrote about in english: http://egyptianchronicles.blogspot.com/2010/05/flotilla-follow-up-and-freedom-flotilla.html

  5. 5 noam said at 10:33 am on June 2nd, 2010:

    Yeh, we heard about it on Monday night, but nothing came out of it. Israeli media is not having much interest in this issue, which is strange.

  6. 6 Surcouf said at 2:33 pm on June 2nd, 2010:

    The UNHRC resolution regarding investigation was opposed by the US, the Netherlands and Italy; Canada is not a member of the UNHRC.

    http://www.ohchr.org/EN/NewsEvents/Pages/DisplayNews.aspx?NewsID=10095&LangID=E

    Current members are:
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/United_Nations_Human_Rights_Council#Members

  7. 7 noam said at 2:36 pm on June 2nd, 2010:

    thanks.

  8. 8 Fania O-S said at 9:16 am on June 6th, 2010:

    Noam,

    First time at your blog: it is reasoned, calm, proportioned, thoughtful. Well done.

    Fania