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White House to Israel: No repeat flotilla attack, please

With another aid ship currently steaming towards Gaza, the Post reported this morning that the White House is privately pressuring Israel to avoid a repeat of the raid that left nine civilians dead and provoked an international outcry that has profoundly complicated ongoing diplomatic efforts.

At today's press gaggle with reporters, White House spokesman Bill Burton confirmed the White House's private entreaties to Israel, and seemed to suggest that Israel has all but committed to avoiding a repeat performance:

BURTON: It's important to the President and to our country that we don't see the same kind of events unfold like they did the last time. So we are talking to our partners and are hopeful that we won't see a repeat.

QUESTION: Does he feel confident then that they're on the same page, that there's a shared sentiment that something like this shouldn't happen again?

BURTON: He feels confident that we're having productive conversations with them.

It would of course be unthinkable that another incident could take place, now that the White House has privately -- and publicly -- called on Israel to refrain from raiding the next aid ship. Right?

By Greg Sargent  |  June 2, 2010; 1:59 PM ET
Categories:  Foreign policy and national security  
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Comments

What could possibly go wrong?

Posted by: BGinCHI | June 2, 2010 2:08 PM | Report abuse

What will Turkey do? Is the U.S. privately acknowledging that the blockade is stupid? Especially given that we all know what's allowed into Gaza, and what's not.

Posted by: Calvin_Jones_and_the_13th_Apostle | June 2, 2010 2:09 PM | Report abuse

@Greg: It would of course be unthinkable that another incident could take place, now that the White House has ...called on Israel to refrain from raiding the next aid ship. Right?"

So, you would ask the Israelis to let the blockade be broken?

Posted by: sbj3 | June 2, 2010 2:10 PM | Report abuse

Letting Humanitarian relief supplies through to the under nourished, and often sick children, of Gaza is not breaking the blockade.

Israel killed at least ten people, and then sent all the cargo that was on board the ship on to Gaza, so they slaughtered people on a humanitarian mission, for no good reason.

I would suggest that Israel offer to inspect the cargo on all ships, and if no weapons or munitions, are found, then those ships be allowed to dock and unload in Gaza.

No reason to stop non military supplies from being shipped into Gaza.

Just inspect, and then allow them through.

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 2:18 PM | Report abuse

sbj3, do you think the Israelis should attack the ship with Irish/Malaysian nationals on board which is carrying "medical equipment, wheelchairs, school supplies and cement, a material Israel has banned in Hamas-ruled Gaza, organizers said,"?

I sure don't.

And why would Israel ban those items? That sure doesn't seem normal.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | June 2, 2010 2:22 PM | Report abuse


No, not right. Of course not.

The miscreants are trying to use this
demand by the US

to blackmail for more of what they want.
Can you imagine?
And behind it all are the same old names
working, bribing, threatening they can. They aer flush with dollars, of course, Wall Street has grabbed much of American wealth. Playing their filty games.

While the DUAL LOYALISTS like ERIC CANTOR
try to bribe the administration by blckmailing them in public.

THey're doing for America what they were trying to do in Germany in the '30s.
A group of "inernational jewery" announced and worked, including trying blackmail,

TO GET AN ECONOMIC BOYCOTT OF GERMANY.
Apparently the Germans weren't pleased.

Posted by: whistling | June 2, 2010 2:25 PM | Report abuse

Whistling,

We are engaging in an honest discussion here, so take your anti Jewish diatribes, and crawl back into the sewer that you just emerged from.

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 2:28 PM | Report abuse

The WH says "no flotilla attacks, PLEASE"?

How about: "Don't touch a hair on their heads, you savage bstrds, you priah, detested of the world parasites on
America?

You do and you'll never get another cent, your Dual Loyalist traitors in congress and in government everywhere will be kicked out and we'll put bright lights
on every Jewish owned media outlet that
tries to censor the truth about this
lousey outrage. Act like decent human beings or you're cut off. You may be cut off anyway."

That's not enough, but it's a little start.

Posted by: whistling | June 2, 2010 2:30 PM | Report abuse


Liam Still,

Do you have the impression that the posts here and elsewhere (now and always) are anything other than anti-Israeli/zionists?

And who the hell do you think you are aspiring to censor discussion.

Posted by: whistling | June 2, 2010 2:39 PM | Report abuse

Umm whistling, you group all Jewish people together as though the actions of a few represent the actions of them all.

I can name off about 10 Christians and Mormons I despise and think are dangerous to this country but I'm not about to go off on Christians and Mormons.

Same goes for Muslim people. There's a billion of em and only a small fraction of those are intent on enslaving the world.

There's bad people of all religions. It's the fanatics that are the problem.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | June 2, 2010 2:41 PM | Report abuse

"Israel has attempted to deliver humanitarian aid from an international flotilla to Gaza, but Hamas -- which controls the territory -- has refused to accept the cargo...Palestinian sources confirmed that trucks that arrived from Israel at the Rafah terminal at the Israel-Gaza border were barred from delivering the aid.

"...Under Israeli policy, humanitarian aid must come through Israel and be checked by Israeli authorities who are looking to intercept smuggled weapons bound for militants aiming to attack Israel.

"As part of this policy Israel forbids ships from dropping off goods at Gaza ports and works to thwart smuggling via tunnels between Gaza and Egypt."

http://www.cnn.com/2010/WORLD/meast/06/02/israel.palestinians.aid/

Posted by: sbj3 | June 2, 2010 2:49 PM | Report abuse

I think it should be made into a two way policy.

All goods that enter Palestine, must be shipped through Israel, where they can be inspected.

All goods shipped in and out of Israel must be sent to Palestine, to be inspected, before allowing them through.

All materials, that Israel might use to forge passports of other nationalities, will be blockaded.

Equal Rights, you know!!!

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 2:56 PM | Report abuse

Liam, you said something that made me wonder if this is a snub since the Israelis forged the Irish passports in the assassination.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | June 2, 2010 2:58 PM | Report abuse

I apologize for the OT, but this is what some of us have been waiting for.

"WASHINGTON (AP) -- President Barack Obama says it's time to roll back "billions of dollars in tax breaks" for oil companies and use the money for clean energy research and development."

"Obama made the comments Wednesday in prepared remarks for a speech at Carnegie Mellon University in Pittsburgh."

"He said the catastrophic Gulf oil spill shows the country must move toward clean energy by embracing energy efficiency, tapping natural gas and nuclear power and eliminating tax breaks for big oil."

"Obama said that the Gulf spill "may prove to be a result of human error -- or corporations taking dangerous shortcuts that compromised safety" -- but that deepwater drilling is inherently risky and America cannot rely solely on fossil fuels."

Posted by: lmsinca | June 2, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

OT. Add Jan Brewer to the liar list:

(Via TPM)

"It's not exactly Richard Blumenthal or Mark Kirk territory. And yet...

Arizona Gov. Jan Brewer (R) told The Arizona Republic in a recent interview that her father "died fighting the Nazi regime in Germany."

Only problem is, that's apparently not quite true.

According to the Arizona Republic, Brewer's father, Wilford Drinkwine, died of lung disease. In California. In 1955."

http://tpmlivewire.talkingpointsmemo.com/2010/06/az-gov-my-dad-died-fighting-the-nazis-in-germany-not-quite.php?ref=fpi

Posted by: BGinCHI | June 2, 2010 3:00 PM | Report abuse

@Liam: No reason to stop non military supplies from being shipped into Gaza. Just inspect, and then allow them through.

Well that would foil the Israeli plan to starve the Gazans into submission. After all, Israel has already imploded their economy and regularly shuts down power and water to Gaza, and forbids spare parts to keep the sewer system going or fuel and spare parts for the hospital generators.

The goal is to make life in Gaza so bad that Hamas will be voted out. This is an epic fail. The harder Israel squeezes, the more the people support Hamas, who in their eyes, is standing up to the Israeli oppressor. All these policies do is shut out moderates that want to bargain with Israel and radicalize the population even more.

Posted by: srw3 | June 2, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Liam, you said something that made me wonder if this is a snub since the Israelis forged the Irish passports in the assassination.

Posted by: mikefromArlington | June 2, 2010 2:58 PM

...............

Mike,

No connection. Irish aid organizations have, in the past, before the passport incident, engaged in similar relief efforts for the people of Palestine.

The Irish people are big supporters of the Jewish people having their own homeland, as well as the Palestinians having one also.

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 3:05 PM | Report abuse

Completely Off Topic,

I just came across this report from AP.

Astonishing and Bizarre.

"LIMA, Peru – A young Dutchman previously arrested in the 2005 disappearance of Alabama teen Natalee Holloway is being sought as a suspect in a weekend murder of a Peruvian woman, Peruvian police said Wednesday.

Criminal police chief Gen. Cesar Guardia told a news conference that Joran van der Sloot was being sought in the Sunday killing of 21-year-old Stephany Flores in a Lima hotel. Guardia said the suspect fled the country the next day by land to Chile.

He said van der Sloot, 22, who was in the country for a poker tournament, appears with the young woman in a video taken at a Lima casino early Sunday.

The victim's father, Ricardo Flores, told reporters she was killed about 8 a.m. that morning in a hotel room that was splattered with blood, indicating a struggle.

The killing occurred exactly five years after the May 30, 2005, disappearance in Aruba of Holloway.

Van der Sloot left Peru on Monday, Guardia said, according to immigration registry. He had been staying at the hotel since May 14 and checked out on Sunday four hours after he arrived there with the victim, the police general added.

"We have an interview with a worker at the hotel who says she saw this foreigner with the victim enter his room," said Guardia."

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 3:16 PM | Report abuse

The existence of the blockade is simply a fact. One may find it objectionable or unjust, but clearly the Israelis disagree. Given that fact, it is both foolhardy to expect the Israelis not to enforce it and highly irresponsible to encourage others, particularly civilians, to attempt to break it. Unless, of course, one is deliberately trying to provoke the Israelis, in which caseit is highly disingenuous to then lament any subsequent loss of life.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 2, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Of course SBJ3 omitted the money graph from the article, as to why the goods are not being accepted...

Ra'ed Fatooh, in charge of the crossings, and Jamal Khudari, head of a committee against the Gaza blockade, said Israel must release all flotilla detainees and that it [the aid] will be accepted in the territory only by the Free Gaza Movement people who organized the flotilla.

So Gazans are not rejecting aid coming into Gaza as a standing policy, just in this case to protest the treatment of the activists.

BTW: Lets talk about the aid that Israel allows in...

"Other than that, no specific list of what is and is not allowed in has been published, and items gaining entry vary over time.
The UN relief agency for Palestinian refugees Unrwa's list of household items that have been refused entry at various times includes light bulbs, candles, matches, books, musical instruments, crayons, clothing, shoes, mattresses, sheets, blankets, pasta, tea, coffee, chocolate, nuts, shampoo and conditioner. Many other items - ranging from cars to fridges to computers - are generally refused entry. Building materials such as cement, concrete and wood were nearly always refused entry until early 2010, when some glass, wood, cement and aluminium were allowed in....Since early 2008, the power plant has received enough fuel to operate at only about two-thirds of its capacity...In late 2009, the responsibility for funding the fuel was transferred from the EU to the Ramallah-based Palestinian Authority - since then the amount of fuel supplied has declined. In April and May 2010, fuel supply fluctuated, with the plant able to operate at between 20 and 50% of its capacity.
Power cuts remain frequent. Research by Oxfam in April 2010 showed houses across Gaza without power for 35-60 hours a week...Before the operation, it says Gazans had only half the water they needed according to international standards, and 80% of water supplied did not meet WHO drinking standards.
At the height of the January fighting, half of Gaza's population had no access to piped water...--BBC

Just a sampling of Israeli policy toward Gaza.

Posted by: srw3 | June 2, 2010 3:21 PM | Report abuse

srw:

"All these policies do is shut out moderates that want to bargain with Israel and radicalize the population even more."

Naturally. It is, of course, the Israelis own fault that people want to kill them. History shows that in the absence of policies like the blockade they would be perfectly safe and secure.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 2, 2010 3:31 PM | Report abuse

@ ScottC3 :The existence of the blockade is simply a fact. One may find it objectionable or unjust, but clearly the Israelis disagree. Given that fact, it is both foolhardy to expect the Israelis not to enforce it and highly irresponsible to encourage others, particularly civilians, to attempt to break it.

The blockade which is collective punishment and the expansion of settlements and the eviction of Arabs from their homes in Israel to allow Jewish people to settle there are "facts on the ground". These actions are illegal under international law. It is only the military and diplomatic aid and protection of the US that keeps Israel from suffering the wrath of the rest of the world for their totally inhuman treatment of the Gazans and Palestinians in general.

Just for a little mind game lets replace the gazans with blacks under Jim Crow. Who is going to defend this position..?

The existence of the Jim crow is simply a fact. One may find it objectionable or unjust, but clearly the white Southerners disagree. Given that fact, it is both foolhardy to expect the white Southerners not to enforce it and highly irresponsible to encourage others, particularly civilians, to attempt to violate Jim Crow.

Stings, doesn't it?

Posted by: srw3 | June 2, 2010 3:34 PM | Report abuse

All, check out these stunning numbers showing how hated BP is:

http://voices.washingtonpost.com/plum-line/2010/06/everyone_hates_bp_and_wants_ob.html

Posted by: Greg Sargent | June 2, 2010 3:39 PM | Report abuse

Israel was not allowing any cement into Gaza, to reconstruct, after Israel had leveled many of the buildings with bombs, about a year ago.

The only excuse Israel gives, for preventing the shipments of cement into Gaza, is because they might use the cement to build bunkers.

How absurd is that. Israel will not allow any construction, including schools and hospitals, because of an irrational fear of bunker building.

Sounds to me like Israel has already decided that they are going to keep pulverizing the Gaza strip for ever; why else would they be going to such absurd lengths to keep out all cement supplies?

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 3:43 PM | Report abuse

@scottsc3: History shows that in the absence of policies like the blockade they would be perfectly safe and secure.

History shows that trying to starve into submission an essentially captive population in what amounts to a huge open air prison breeds hatred and vows for revenge toward the jailors.

Allowing people adequate food, water, and sanitation in territories that Israel occupies conforms with international law and basic human decency. I expect that from all civilized countries. I guess Israel is not included.

Posted by: srw3 | June 2, 2010 3:47 PM | Report abuse

@ scottc3: From Thinkprogress:

While Israel’s logic of the blockade has been that “a collapsing economy will convince Gaza’s people to push Hamas from power,” the reality is that ordinary Gazans are suffering and Hamas “has benefited handsomely” from it:

They’re doing so, veteran Gaza businessmen say, thanks to the fact that Hamas can generate capital while all its potential competitors are running dry. They charge that Hamas and its associates have been using their control of smuggling tunnels, money changing, and tax revenue to buy prime tracts of land and buildings across Gaza, particularly along the enclave’s main boulevards.

“Thanks to Israel, while everyone else suffers, day after day Hamas is strengthening itself with the blockade,” says Amr Hamad, executive manager of Gaza’s Palestinian Federation of Industries (PFI), a private-sector organization. “And they are using this position to deepen their roots in Gaza.”

Even a Bush administration State Department official said in 2008 that the blockade “wasn’t working.” “Within Gaza, Hamas seems the least effected by the closure,” he said.

thinkprogress.org/

Posted by: srw3 | June 2, 2010 4:01 PM | Report abuse

srw (trying to draw an analogy to what I wrote):

"The existence of the Jim crow is simply a fact. One may find it objectionable or unjust, but clearly the white Southerners disagree. Given that fact, it is both foolhardy to expect the white Southerners not to enforce it and highly irresponsible to encourage others, particularly civilians, to attempt to violate Jim Crow. "

Not quite. That analogy doesn't hold, because the south was not a nation enforcing a national policy via its military, and the civilians attempting to subvert the policy were not foreign naitonals.

A more apt analogy, and equally skewed (in favor of your point) in terms of those representing the "good" and "bad" guys, would be the following:

The existence of German occupation of France in 1942 is simply a fact. One may find it objectionable or unjust, but clearly the Nazis disagree. Given that fact, it is both foolhardy to expect Germany not to enforce the occupation, and highly irresposible to encourage others, particularly civilians, to attempt to overcome it.

This is quite true, even if one does reject the legitimacy of German occupation. Any nation that allowed its own civilians, or encouraged the civilians of other nations, to challenge that occupation in the hope or expectation that the Germans would act benignly and allow the challenge to stand would be both foolhardy and irresponsible. And if they did so precisely in order to provoke the Germans into a violent response, then they have no business lamenting the very bloodshed they hoped to provoke.

If you truly believe that the Israeli blockade of Gaza is as umitigated an evil as you suggest, then you ought to be advocating professional military action to end it, just as professional military action was used to end the German occupation of France. What you ought not condone, cheer, or otherwise support in any way at all is putting civilians in the obvious danger they are in by attempting to run the blockade. Unless, again, all you are interested in is a public relations coup, in which case any outrage over the subsequent loss of life is little more than a fraud.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 2, 2010 4:11 PM | Report abuse

Look at how successful the more than five decades embargo on Cuba, by the USA has been. That sure got the people of Cuba to oust the Castro regime, right?!

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 4:19 PM | Report abuse

@scottc3:If you truly believe that the Israeli blockade of Gaza is as umitigated an evil as you suggest, then you ought to be advocating professional military action to end it.

I guess you are good with the amount and type of goods that are allowed in (on the whim of the Israeli govt, as indicated in the post upthread)..

It would be funny if it weren't so tragically wrongheaded to hear you justify armed resistance to Israel or outside intervention to stop Israel's unjust policies. After all, that is what Hamas and much of the Arab world believes is the correct response.

But it is totally unnecessary. If the US would stop all military and other aid (like loan guarantees) and treat Israel like the pariah nation it is (because it uses collective punishment, land expropriation, apartheid laws, etc,) there would be no need for military action. Unlike conservatives, I believe in a high threshold for attacking another country, even one that does bad things like Israel.

I didn't say it was unmitigated evil. It is probably ONLY 90% evil, as some food, water, and fuel does get in and the smuggling tunnels (that Hamas benefits from at the expense of others) also marginally mitigate the effects of the blockade.

scottc3: That analogy doesn't hold, because the south was not a nation enforcing a national policy via its military, and the civilians attempting to subvert the policy were not foreign naitonals.

Actually it does. The local and state police are analogous to the army of a country and they were enforcing state laws, the blacks under Jim Crow are analogous to the Gazans and the freedom riders and others were not necessarily residents of the state they were working in. I am not sure why this isn't analogous, even if the situations are not identical.

scottc3:The existence of German occupation of France in 1942 is simply a fact. One may find it objectionable or unjust, but clearly the Nazis disagree. Given that fact, it is both foolhardy to expect Germany not to enforce the occupation, and highly irresposible to encourage others, particularly civilians, to attempt to overcome it.

scottc3 are you saying that it was irresponsible for the British to try to get other nations to fight the Germans in Europe? Really? Are you saying that to encouraging the French people to join the resistance was irresponsible? Really?

Posted by: srw3 | June 2, 2010 4:39 PM | Report abuse

srw:

"I guess you are good with the amount and type of goods that are allowed in..."

Not sure why you would "guess" that, since I haven't commented on that at all.

"It would be funny if it weren't so tragically wrongheaded to hear you justify armed resistance to Israel or outside intervention to stop Israel's unjust policies."

I am not justifying it at all. I have merely pointed out that, if your characterizations and judgments are accurate, it would be justified.

"After all, that is what Hamas and much of the Arab world believes is the correct response."

It may come as a shock to you, but Hamas and much of the Arab world believe that is the correct response no matter what Israeli/US policies are.

"But it is totally unnecessary. If the US would stop all military and other aid..."

Perhaps it is true that if the US stopped supporting Israel, Israel would stop defending itself. Unlikely, but possible. My sense is that if the US stopped supporting Israel, bloodshed would be much more, not less, likely. Nonetheless, even if you advocate petitioning the US to change its policies rather than military action itself, you still should not condone or support sending civilians into harms way by trying to run the blockade. Unless, again, you are simply interested in a cheap (and violent) publicity stunt.

"Actually [the southern analogy] does [hold].

No, it doesn't, for many reasons. For one, the southern police were not acting on behalf of a sovereign nation. Indeed, in many instances they were acting against the sovereign of which they were a part. Second, there is a significant difference between the role of the military and the role of police. Third, and relatedly, there is a significant difference between civilians challenging a domestic law and foreign nationals challenging the sovereignty of a nation.

They are not analagous for our purposes here. My Germany/France analogy is much better.

"scottc3 are you saying that it was irresponsible for the British to try to get other nations to fight the Germans in Europe?"

No, not at all. I am saying that it would have been both foolhardy and irresponsible fo the British to send their own unarmed civilians, or get other nations to send their own unarmed civilians, to France in an attempt to challenge the German occupation in the hope/expectation that the German military would treat them benignly.

"Are you saying that to encouraging the French people to join the resistance was irresponsible?"

No, not at all. But again, it would have been the height of idiocy to support the resistance while feigning outrage when the Germans opposed it with force.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 2, 2010 5:16 PM | Report abuse

@sc3: you still should not condone or support sending civilians into harms way by trying to run the blockade.

I did not state any support for running the blockade. I support ending the blockade. I believe that attacking a ship in international waters is an act of piracy. What if Iran decided to forcibly board a ship to prevent it from "supplying insurgents" in Iran in international waters. The outcry would be deafening from the US.

@sc3:Perhaps it is true that if the US stopped supporting Israel, Israel would stop defending itself. Unlikely, but possible.

You just don't get it. Without the US effectively blocking any substantive action by the world community through the UN toward the illegal occupation and collective punishment the Israelis are conducting and providing lavish support (Israel is either 2 or 3 in the US foreign aid list, not counting direct military aid and loan guarantees, and access to the most sophisticated weapons technology in the world) and military backing to Israel, it could not maintain the bellicose attitude toward the palistinians (and the rest of the world) it has now.


sc3:No, not at all. I am saying that it would have been both foolhardy and irresponsible fo the British to send their own unarmed civilians, or get other nations to send their own unarmed civilians, to France in an attempt to challenge the German occupation in the hope/expectation that the German military would treat them benignly.

There are a whole bunch of qualifications in this statement that weren't in your first statement.

"highly irresposible to encourage others, particularly civilians, to attempt to overcome it." "Overcome it" is not equal to nonviolent resistance by civilians as you state above.

"Third, and relatedly, there is a significant difference between civilians challenging a domestic law and foreign nationals challenging the sovereignty of a nation."

Well, sailing in international waters is hardly challenging the sovereignty of another nation, since no nation has sovereignty in international waters.

What do you consider the Palestinian resistance to Israel to be when they try to stop the demolition of a house by the IDF?

In Israel, the military are functioning as the police in many ways, especially when dealing with Palestinians in the occupied territories. It is the army, not the police that are enforcing the law in the Jewish areas of say Hebron.

Posted by: srw3 | June 2, 2010 5:44 PM | Report abuse

Israel needs to draw back to the 69 borders, because under international law, they are not allowed to confiscate land, and annex it from the territory under their occupation.

It is time for them to let go, and have the Palestinian State established. It does not matter if Israel and the new Palestinian State recognize each other or not. Once there are two states, side by side, they will both have to avoid acts of aggression which will lead to justified war, in response.

Israel having had control of the occupation for more than forty years, is long enough. Time to stop the nonsense, and allow the Palestinians to take their place among the family of nations.

Turn them loose, which then forces them to behave like a real nation, or face the consequences.

The Gaza strip may have to become a separate country, from the West Bank. Geographically, it just does not make much sense to have it established with the West Bank, as a single nation. There are several countries that are smaller in size, and populations, than that of Gaza.

Israel would have been better off, if they had never taken over Gaza from Egypt.

It reminds me of the tale about the Australian Aboriginal Chief, who was given a beautiful, ornate boomerang, by his tribe, to commemorate his twenty five years as their tribal leader.

The poor man spent the rest of his life, unsuccessfully trying to toss away his old boomerang.

Sorry to hear about your bad day Greg. Keep the faith, and things will look brighter in the morning.

It was Birther Bilgey who made the absurd comparison between a single plane crash, and the massive oil spill in the Gulf.

Good night all.

Posted by: Liam-still | June 2, 2010 7:51 PM | Report abuse

Isn't Turkey sending a naval escort with this one? I hope so.

Posted by: merlallen1 | June 2, 2010 8:03 PM | Report abuse

"White House to Israel: No repeat flotilla attack, please"


HOW ABOUT, NO MORE BLOCKING OF GAZA, HOW ABOUT LET THE PEOPLE LIVE NORMALY, HOW ABOUT, HELP PALESTINE BECOME A STATE LIKE ISRAEL.

SCREW THE WHITE HOUSE, FULL OF NAZIONISTS AND JEWISH TERRORISTS, SCREW THE HITE HOUSE AND THEIR CHRISTIAN CRIMES.

Posted by: BOBSTERII | June 2, 2010 9:40 PM | Report abuse

srw:

"I did not state any support for running the blockade."

Does that mean you do not support these flotilla actions? If so then it seems we agree. If not, then I wonder what the point of you claiming the above is.

"What if Iran decided to forcibly board a ship to prevent it from "supplying insurgents" in Iran in international waters."

If the ship was, indeed, attempting to supply insurgents, I would be no more surprised or outraged than I would have been when the Germans fought back against the French resistance during WWII.

"Without the US effectively blocking any substantive action by the world community through the UN..."

That's amusing. What "substantive action" would you ever expect the UN to take in the absence of the US? Without the US (both monetarily and militarily) the UN is an impotent nothing. And there is no such thing as the "world community". Defining the whole world as a "community" shows a misunderstanding of what a community actually is.

"Well, sailing in international waters is hardly challenging the sovereignty of another nation, since no nation has sovereignty in international waters."

The explicitly stated purpose of the flotilla was to break the blockade. You do yourself no credit by mischaracterizing it as merely "sailing in international waters" as if it were nothing more significant than a luxury cruise.

"What do you consider the Palestinian resistance to Israel to be when they try to stop the demolition of a house by the IDF?"

I am not sure what you are looking for here, but if the house has been housing Palestinian terrorists or weapons to be used against Israel, one thing neither the "resistance" nor you ought to be is, well, surprised.

"In Israel, the military are functioning as the police in many ways, especially when dealing with Palestinians in the occupied territories."

Yes...the military often acts as the police when occupying a territory. But the analogy we were discussing was not between Israeli policing of Hebron and domestic policing in the Jim Crow south. It was between an Israeli military blockade of Gaza and policing of the Jim Crow south. Suggesting that the military blockade is analagous to southern policing of Jim Crow because the Israeli military also polices Hebron is, well, kind of silly. Again, I think I offered a perfectly reasonable and far more apt analogy with the German occupation of France. Why don't you stick with that.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 2, 2010 11:01 PM | Report abuse

@ ScottC3 : That's amusing. What "substantive action" would you ever expect the UN to take in the absence of the US?

Well, how about the South African Boycott, that the US opposed during the Reaganite years, yet it went forward and had a positive effect on ending apartheid.

"1980s: People and governments around the world launch an international campaign to boycott (not do business with) South Africa. Some countries ban the import of South African products, and citizens of many countries pressure major companies to pull out of South Africa.

These actions have a crippling effect on the South African economy and weaken the government."--UN.org

Even if the US just stood aside and abstained from supporting Israel in the security council similar kinds of UN action can have a big effect on Israel.

"I am not sure what you are looking for here, but if the house has been housing Palestinian terrorists or weapons to be used against Israel, one thing neither the "resistance" nor you ought to be is, well, surprised."

You really are an Israel apologist before anything. Arabs are not allowed to build in many areas of Jerusalem and the west bank because they can't get permits while Jews can. Arabs are being systematically cleansed most of Jerusalem through "legal" but not legitimate or fair procedures.

"According to the Israeli non-governmental organization B'Tselem, since the 1990s, policies that made construction permits harder to obtain for Arab residents have caused a housing shortage that forces many of them to seek housing outside East Jerusalem.[28] Furthermore, East Jerusalem residents that are married to residents of the West Bank and Gaza have had to leave Jerusalem to join their husbands and wives due to the citizenship law. Furthermore, many have had to leave Jerusalem in search of work abroad since, in the aftermath of the Second Intifada East Jerusalem has increasingly been cut off from the West Bank and thereby has lost its main economic hub.[29] Israeli journalist Shahar Ilan argues that this outmigration has led many Palestinians in East Jerusalem to lose their permanent residency status... To facilitate more Jewish settlement in East Jerusalem, the Cabinet is now considering an approximately 5.75 billion NIS plan to reduce taxes in the area, relocate a range of governmental offices, construct new courthouses, and build a new center for Jerusalem studies.[33] Plans to construct 25,000 Jewish homes in East Jerusalem are in the development stages. As Arab residents are hard-pressed to obtain building permits to develop existing infrastructure or housing in East Jerusalem, this proposition has received much criticism.[34][35][30]"

Posted by: srw3 | June 3, 2010 12:20 AM | Report abuse

srw:

"Well how about the South African boycott..."

The US is not preventing anyone from boycotting Israel and no one needs UN permission to impose one should they want to do so. The US has been boycotting Cuban goods for 50 years without UN approval.

Any authority figure that lacks the means and/ or the will to enforce its authority is effectively impotent, and that pretty much describes the UN to a tee, particulalry in the absence of US backing.

"You really are an Israel apologist before anything."

No. My original point made no moral judgement at all about whether Israeli policy towards Palestine or Arabs is just or not. I was merely stating a fact that seems to have evaded many people here, and that was simply that one cannot actively defy the military policy of another nation without expecting them to respond forcefully to it.

It is true that I have sympathy for Israel given the existential threat that it faces daily. But that is irrelevant to my point, which is precisely why I put forward the analogy of German occupation of France. Despite my belief that opposition to the occupation was perfectly just, it would have been foolish to express shock and outrage over German attempts to counter such opposition.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 3, 2010 6:55 AM | Report abuse

@sc3: I notice you had no comment on the systematic removal of Arabs from Jerusalem and the west bank, after your trope implying that only terrorist houses are blown up (which is also collective punishment). Forcing Arabs out of Jerusalem and the west bank is like the Bantustan policy of South Africa.


"Despite my belief that opposition to the occupation was perfectly just, it would have been foolish to express shock and outrage over German attempts to counter such opposition."

It is not foolish to expect Israel to act in a more humane manner than the Nazis. If their actions are on a par with Nazi behavior, shouldn't the US stop supporting Israel?

Posted by: srw3 | June 3, 2010 9:09 AM | Report abuse

srw:

"I notice you had no comment on the systematic removal of Arabs from Jerusalem and the west bank..."

I'm not sure why you would expect me to...again the point I was making had nothing to do with the justice or injustice of Israeli policy towards Arabs or vice versa.

"It is not foolish to expect Israel to act in a more humane manner than the Nazis."

But it is foolish (or disingenuous) to characterize any behavior in which the Nazis engaged as "Nazi behavior". Hitler brushed his teeth...does that make brushing one's teeth Hitler-like behavior?

The use of military force to defend or enforce one's foreign policies against foreign attempts to subvert them was not Nazi invention. It is and has always been standard operating procedure for virtually all nations. A nation that refused to use military force to defend it's national policies wouldn't be a nation very long. To characterize such action as "Nazi behavior" simply because Nazi Germany did it too, is absurd.

Again, to be perfectly clear....one may conceivably object to Israeli policy towards Palestine in general or its imposition of a blockade in particular. But knwoing that such is in fact their policy, it is utter foolishness to be outraged when Israel actually resists attempts to break it.

Posted by: ScottC3 | June 3, 2010 10:52 AM | Report abuse

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