Israeli Soldiers Were Attacked By Pro-Palestinian Activists, Fired In Self-Defense

by Ben Hoffman

The video says it all

Video taken by IDF naval boat shows the passengers of the Mavi Marmara, one of the ships in the ‘Free Gaza’ Flotilla, violently attacking IDF soldiers who were trying to board the ship after having sent repeated requests for the boat to change course.

Large groups of passengers surrounded soldiers and beat them with metal poles and chairs, and threw one soldier over the side of the ship. Some passengers grabbed pistols from the IDF soldiers and opened fire. As a result of the attacks, seven IDF soldiers were injured, and nine of the passengers were killed.

The ‘Free Gaza’ Flotilla had publicly insisted on their non-violent intentions, however their violent attack on the IDF soldiers was clearly premeditated. They had knives, metal rods, firebombs and other items ready to use.

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37 Comments to “Israeli Soldiers Were Attacked By Pro-Palestinian Activists, Fired In Self-Defense”

  1. We finally see something the same way! I knew we would find common ground somewhere!

    It is disgusting to watch this video. It was obvious that Israel was not attacking the ship with one person at a time coming down the rope. Would be the worst approach ever if they were. And how sad is it for the U.N. to come our and condemn Israel already on this without even a formal investigation first.

    Just makes me sick to watch folks with power cast serious judgement before they know the facts on what they are talking about. These irresponsible acts of judgement are being noticed.

    Hope you had a nice weekend.

  2. Oh well, that’s what you get when you ATTACK SOLDIERS.

    Absolutely, because you are automatically right if you happen to be holding a gun.

    If this incident had been against an official enemy, this would be playing out entirely differently.

  3. the Arbourist,

    Can you clarify your comments. Whose side are you on, concerning this incident?

    • I did not realize I needed to be on a ‘side’ for this.

      If I were to pick a side I would be the side that thinks that innocent people should not have to die because a state believes it has the right to enforce a blockade. I am on the side that respects international law.

      Just for the sake of clarification.

      • the Arbourist,

        You seem to be a half way intelligent man. How do you justify your remarks. You are way out there.

        Israel has a blockade because if they don’t, missiles will come from Gaza and put holes in their country, not to mention hundreds of dead Jews. Uhhh,,, you do get that,,,say that you get that?? I think the Israelis should have killed every nit wit on those humanitarian boats . If they had sunk those ships, there would be no video, would there ?

        If some martyr wannabes start dropping missiles in Canada, wouldn’t you at least put a blockade around them?

        ” If I were to pick a side I would be the side that thinks that innocent people should not have to die ”

        That is a false statement. No “innocent” people died. a bunch of clowns are exactly where they wanted to be, in terrorist HEAVEN.

        Explain the “innocent” part.

      • AS said:srael has a blockade because if they don’t, missiles will come from Gaza and put holes in their country, not to mention hundreds of dead Jews. Uhhh,,, you do get that,,,say that you get that??

        Israel has been illegally occupying Palestinian Territory for some 30 years. The recent blockade 2006/2007 has spelled nothing but suffering and death for the people of Gaza. Their crime, democratically electing people, we in the West do not like.

        Consider: “The economic collapse in Gaza is striking. A decade ago, annual per capita income in Gaza was $2,500, and some $400m of goods was exported to Israel annually. When Israel imposed the siege after Hamas seized power in 2007, per capita income fell to around $900. Last year, it was just $600, plunging most Gazans below the poverty line to survive on less than $2 a day.

        By the most conservative estimates, unemployment runs at 45 per cent, and the UN Relief and Works and Agency says it gets some 40,000 applications for even the most menial jobs. About 80 per cent of the population is now dependent on UN food parcels, quarterly packages comprising rice, milk, flour, cooking oil, sugar and cans of meat. “We are not Darfur,” says Palestinian economist Omar Shaban. “If you removed the siege, people could live as they do in the South of France. We have everything in our homes. But we deserve better lives.”

        But again, as official enemies, they do not deserve a reasonable existence. Problem solved.

        I think the Israelis should have killed every nit wit on those humanitarian boats .

        When people in the nations the the US routinely oppresses and marginalizes cheered for the actions of 9/11 they were operating on the same level as you were by making the above statement. Congratulations.

        That is a false statement. No “innocent” people died. a bunch of clowns are exactly where they wanted to be, in terrorist HEAVEN.

        So then by labelling people terrorists we can ignore international law and human rights(standard practice for the US, I realize but it still needs to be mentioned)? Fantastic, so then when another nation state brands US actions ‘terrorist’ the perpetrators can also expect similar ‘justice’ to be meted out and all will be good.

  4. Mr. Hoffman,

    What is your take on President Obama sending his condolences to Turkey over the deaths on the ship?

  5. Mr. Hoffman,

    🙂

  6. Interesting comments.

    (Arbourist) First off, not only does logic play a role in a country like Israel to block the unknown supplies to the terrorist group of Hamas, but International Law does allow for a “sovereign state” to do as such when trying to defend itself. As it does defend itself from over 700 bombings and attacks a year (on average) from Hamas. Many countries have done similar things.

    Next, Turkish President Recip Tayyip Erdogan is very open about his “dream of returning Turkey’s dominance through going down the Islamic hall.” He is siding with the Palestinians and Hamas, and improving relations with Syria, Iran and others. These two boats came into this bearing the Turkish flags. The crew is now being reported to contain over 50 known terrorist or strong ties with terrorist directly. They were organized by the IHH group who has direct links with Al Qaeda.

    So understand the setting first before casting judgement.

    Now these boats came into an area they were well aware of and new they would be approached by Israel. They were approached and radio warnings were issued to the boats to change course. They would not reply. This continued for some time. The warnings turned into warnings of being boarded if they did not change course and nothing. Over and over. Now keep in mind, Israel has set up an opportunity for ships to deliver actual aide to the Gaza strip and this is known by all those ships and countries. These ships insisted on ignoring the warnings. Israel did not attack the ships, they just attempted to board them. If they were attacking them, they wouldn’t drop one man at a time and instead probably open fire on them. These soldiers, slide down into a crowd that were ready to kill them. They were attacking in groups with pipes and knives. As a police officer, I can tell you I would have no issues killing someone with my gun if they were attacking me and trying to kill me, specially in a mob like that. If you choose to let them kill you as you attempted to negotiate with them, that’s your choice. God speed!

    Now what really disturbs me is how the U.N. came out to condemn Israel before they knew what happened. And what is worse is how they didn’t do anything after the recent North Korean attack on a South Korean boat killing 46 sailors in international waters. Nothing! Nada! But they have no problem coming out too early to cast blame this time.

    And to make things worse, we have the very same Hillary Clinton who hand delivered just under $1 Billion of our tax dollars to the Gaza strip and into the hands of the Hamas in the name of “aide” come out yesterday and support the U.N.’s premature decision of condemnation and state, “the United States of America officially condemns Israel” and their actions. I guess she is speaking on behalf of Obama because who else is standing up for the entire country in that bold rush-to-judgement condemnation?

    • Good post, Nick. The rest of the people on that flotilla should be thankful for the Israeli Army’s restraint.

      As for the 9 dead, we shouldn’t be in such a rush to assume they’re innocent just because they didn’t have guns. Rods, firebombs, and even a mob with their bare hands can be just as lethal.

    • As it does defend itself from over 700 bombings and attacks a year (on average) from Hamas.

      Before you frame this situation as it usually is portrayed, consider that Israel is still in violation of UN resolutions 239, 242 and the Geneva conventions for illegally occupying Palestinian land. The bombings they suffer are a direct consequence of their unlawful behaviour. So if Israeli’s are busy defending themselves from bomb attacks, then the Palestinians are defending themselves from some 30 years of illegal occupation.

      There are not many innocent parties in that region of the world portraying either as acting solely in self defence to justify their actions is wrong.

      Next, Turkish President Recip Tayyip Erdogan is very open about his “dream of returning Turkey’s dominance through going down the Islamic hall.” He is siding with the Palestinians and Hamas, and improving relations with Syria, Iran and others.

      Unsurprising. The geopolitical situation in middle east, not to mention the wealth of natural resources there makes control of the region a primary goal of the foreign policy of many nations, including the United States. So stating that a nation has a ‘national interest’ in the region is nothing new, nor particularly relevant to the story.

      So understand the setting first before casting [sic]judgement.

      I’m curious, after announcing something like this that you then go on to write definitively about how things happened. Your version of events may or may not be factually correct; yet you present them as such ironically, after making a plea for nuance, a plea for understanding.

      Now these boats came into an area they were well aware of and new they would be approached by Israel.

      So now you claim knowledge of what their captains and crews were thinking? The above is a reasonable assumption, however, I do not think one could reasonably qualify all of the statements in your paragraph as such.

      They were approached and radio warnings were issued to the boats to change course. They would not reply.

      Radio links were cut and jammed during the operation: “We could see the commandos landing on the big ship from helicopters, about a kilometre away from where we were. We could hear gunfire but they had cut all radio links so we could not talk to them,” he said. “Then at 4.30 in the morning they came for our vessel.” according to Henning Mankell speaking to the Independent.

      So there is problem, either there was radio or there was not. The details of the raid are still being revealed, yet you assume this is how it happened.

      Now keep in mind, Israel has set up an opportunity for ships to deliver actual aide to the Gaza strip and this is known by all those ships and countries.

      Absolutely. Israel has also closed and damaged Gaza’s own port. Why divert humanitarian aid away from where it is needed? Why would people who put together this convoy what to go through Israeli authorities, the ones responsible for the Gaza siege?

      These ships insisted on ignoring the warnings. Israel did not attack the ships, they just attempted to board them. If they were attacking them, they wouldn’t drop one man at a time and instead probably open fire on them.

      Hassan GHani reports: “They began by throwing stun grenades on to the deck of the ship when people were in the middle of morning prayers.

      “Then they began using rubber bullets, they tried to come aboard the ship from the side. People repelled the commandos with water cannons they had set up on the side of the ship.

      So again, another picture of the incident in question.

      They were attacking in groups with pipes and knives. As a police officer, I can tell you I would have no issues killing someone with my gun if they were attacking me and trying to kill me, specially in a mob like that.

      Would you also have issue with defending yourself if heavily armed men broke into your house armed with stun grenades and sub-machine guns? Do the people on board the ship get to play the self defence card or that only reserved for the ones that stopped a ship in international waters, forced entry to it and then was attacked?

      Consider, also from the Independent: “The first British campaigner to return to the UK following Israel’s assault on the Gaza aid flotilla has accused troops
      of ignoring SOS pleas from wounded passengers and deliberately firing live rounds at unarmed activists.”

      A very different version of events is being described by the people who were there and not part of the official sources being made available to the media, or the ones you have quoted from Fox News.

      So perhaps while calling for understanding of the situation and then putting forth yet another sanctioned version of events, a little more time and effort could be expended to enhance the credibility of your claims, because alternative narratives of this event are in existence and should be consulted before making definitive pronouncements about ‘what happened’.

      • [The bombings they suffer are a direct consequence of their unlawful behaviour.]

        We spell it behavior here in the U.S. you damn commie! 🙂

        That said, Israel wouldn’t be occupying that land if the Arabs living in what is called Palestine would recognize Israel’s right to exist.

  7. Nick, you are right on!

  8. Nick,

    I wonder why President Obama does not start proceedings to kick Turkey out of NATO. They have switched sides. What good are they? I was going to say they should be kicked out of the EU, but staying in the EU would be worse for them .

  9. Definitive videos are hard to come by. I would like to see the footage the news crew shot during the raid.

    If things happened as described in the official version events are true, then releasing the footage shot by the camera crews on board should not be a problem.

    • It could be that both sides were at fault for the battle on board the Flotilla, but the one fact remains: the flotilla violated the Israeli naval blockade.

      Israel has a right to defend itself and the blockade is necessary for that. The Palestinian sympathizers should have gone through proper channels to get the supplies to Gaza. The fact that they didn’t shows they deliberately provoked Israel.

      • Israel has a right to defend itself and the blockade is necessary for that.

        A haaretez blog-columnist disagrees.

        “Hamas, and no less, Iran and Hezbollah, learned early on that Israel’s own embargo against Hamas-ruled Gaza was the most sophisticated and powerful weapon they could have deployed against the Jewish state.

        Here in Israel, we have still yet to learn the lesson: We are no longer defending Israel. We are now defending the siege. The siege itself is becoming Israel’s Vietnam.

        Of course, we knew this could happen. On Sunday, when the army spokesman began speaking of a Gaza-bound aid flotilla in terms of an attack on Israel, MK Nahman Shai, the IDF chief spokesman during the 1991 Gulf war, spoke publicly of his worst nightmare, an operation in which Israeli troops, raiding the flotilla, might open fire on peace activists, aid workers and Nobel laureates.

        Likud MK Miri Regev, who also once headed the IDF Spokesman’s Office, said early Monday that the most important thing now was to deal with the negative media reports quickly, so they would go away.

        But they are not going to go away. One of the ships is named for Rachel Corrie, killed while trying to bar the way of an IDF bulldozer in Gaza seven years ago. Her name, and her story, have since become a lightning rod for pro-Palestinian activism.”

        Would this right of a country to defend itself extent to other countries? If Iran was interdicting humanitarian supplies to bound to another country would you be defending their actions?

        The Palestinian sympathizers should have gone through proper channels to get the supplies to Gaza.

        Absolutely. The American colonists should have waited patiently while for the French to negotiated with the British to deliver to them the much needed material for the Revolution. Admittedly, a touch of hyperbole, but how was delivering the goods through ‘appropriate channels’ going to work? Oh here, sponsors of the blockade, please take these supplies to the victims of our policy, to make your blockade less effective?

        The fact that they didn’t shows they deliberately provoked Israel.

        To bring aid to a people strangled of basic resources, building materials, medicine, etc is a ‘provocation’ of Israel then so be it, but lets not call this ‘defending Israel’, call it for what it is: enforcing collective punishment on a marginalized, oppressed people.

  10. Arbourist,

    This is total BS . The terrorists should just be shot.

  11. Arb:[The bombings they suffer are a direct consequence of their unlawful behaviour.]

    BH: We spell it behavior here in the U.S. you damn commie! 🙂

    Guilty as charged. 🙂

    BH:That said, Israel wouldn’t be occupying that land if the Arabs living in what is called Palestine would recognize Israel’s right to exist.

    And here is the where it starts. I agree that Israel has a right to exist, and the extremes that the radical elements of the middle east are willing to go to are most decidedly wrong. But how well has the moderate ‘peace process’ been working out for either side.

    The Arabs point to US-Israeli obstructionism, while Israel and US point to Arab terrorism and obstructionism, while proposing under the guise of fair process the organization the remaining (post UN agreement 239, 242) Palestinian land into bhantustan like, essentially ungovernable ghettos.

    What is fair and reasonable, has all but been obscured by the geopolitical machinations of all those involved in the conflict.

    • My position re: attacking a soldier with a weapon still stands, but I did find this interesting. It refers to how the “official” story may have been suppressed:

      http://www.salon.com/news/opinion/glenn_greenwald/2010/06/04/israel/index.html

      (from one of my favorite liberal columnists!)

      • The story you cite is certainly a far cry from Nick’s version of events and your uncritical support of his position.

        And again, since when did being in the military and possessing a weapon make you right?

        It would certainly be heartening for the Taliban if they enjoyed such mindful justifications of the application of force.

        Let me take a stab at correcting your statement.

        The people/side you share ideological similarities with have the right to murder at will. The converse of your statement however does not apply when similar treatment is given to official enemies.

        So how do you define right and wrong Mr.Kaine, are you an absolutist as your sometimes conservative pedigree indicates or perhaps somewhere closer to the relativist point of view on what is right and wrong? Somewhere in between?

        The contradictions that crop up suggest that sticking to an absolutist position is not particularly reasonable.

      • [Since when did being in the military and possessing a weapon make you right?]
        When did being in the military and possessing a weapon automatically make a soldier wrong? You’re trying to twist this into an argument of ideologies in support of a peacenik position, when it isn’t.

        If Israel fired unprovoked, then that was wrong. That’s ideology. If someone without a gun gets in the way of someone with a gun and provokes them with rocks and firebombs, that’s stupidity and they deserve what they get – black, white, short, tall, whatever.

        Furthermore, since anyone considering the idea of those boats can certainly anticipate a potentially violent situation, then by getting on the boat one has either prepared for that situation, or wants it. If these people didn’t want to risk getting shot (right or wrong), they shouldn’t have gotten on that boat in the first place.

        Let’s also not forget that these are people who are supportive of two terrorist organizations that want to see an entire race wiped off the map, who bring firebombs to a sit-in as an act of “peace”. These are people I will never support or identify with no matter what seemingly innocent acts they try to pass off as “peaceful” in the meantime because their warped ideology underlies it. Why they so quickly and automatically get the bulk of your sympathy, however, is beyond me.

      • [Since when did being in the military and possessing a weapon make you right?]
        When did being in the military and possessing a weapon automatically make a soldier wrong? You’re trying to twist this into an argument of ideologies in support of a peacenik position, when it isn’t.

        No, not a peacenik position, just one that ostensibly fair. Because if the roles were reversed I would expect you to come as feverently in favour of an official enemy using extreme prejudice to get their way. Which I doubt you would, because there are two sets of rules in the world, one for the US and her allies, and then the rest of the world. So, if you like it as is, then know it is not a moral position, just one backed up with the biggest stick.

        If these people didn’t want to risk getting shot (right or wrong), they shouldn’t have gotten on that boat in the first place.

        Ah yes, so perhaps they should have had a nice drum circle or a sit in somewhere. Consider the article from Salon:

        “The initial act of aggression was the Israeli seizing of a ship in international waters which was doing nothing hostile; that action was taken to enforce a horrific, inhumane blockade and, more generally, a brutal, decades-long occupation; and whatever else is true, at least nine civilians were killed by the Israeli Navy, only the latest example of Israel (and the U.S.) using massive military force against civilians. ”

        And of course also from the article,

        Presumably it is this suppressive fire that killed or wounded some passengers and which provoked an angry reaction and an attack on the commandos.”

        But hey, I guess they deserved it.

        These are people I will never support or identify with no matter what seemingly innocent acts they try to pass off as “peaceful”

        At least you tend to identify them as human beings as opposed to terrorists. And since when was bringing the likes of pre-fabricated homes, and concrete and medical supplies to needy people considered a terrorist act?

      • […there are two sets of rules in the world, one for the US and her allies, and then the rest of the world.]
        There’s more than two sets. In case you haven’t noticed, Hamas and Hezbolah have their own little set of rules that they play by, too. Propaganda ploys like this one are one of them.

        ARB: [Ah yes, so perhaps they should have had a nice drum circle or a sit in somewhere.]
        They should have, but they can’t seem to. No, your apparent peace-lovers always have to bring firebombs and weapons, otherwise it doesn’t fit into their “all Jews must die” theme. Lumber and medical supplies? Right. I have serious doubts that that’s all they were carrying on those boats.

        Consider the article from Salon:]
        Slow down – I like some of Glenn Greenwald’s arguments, but his position is very slanted, sometimes ridiculously so in my opinion. What do you expect people like him and Al Jazeera to report?

        [At least you tend to identify them as human beings as opposed to terrorists. And since when was bringing the likes of pre-fabricated homes, and concrete and medical supplies to needy people considered a terrorist act?]
        For one, when it’s supported by the two terrorist groups, but again you’re trying to get into the right/wrong thing.

        For another, if I’m pushing a shopping cart from Home Depot DELIBERATELY through a blockade filled with people I’ve said I want to wipe off the face of the earth, then I yell racial epithets at them, and all the while I’m holding a firebomb (or worse) behind my back waiting for one of them to do something, you don’t think I’m expecting a conflict, and you think I’m innocent? Please. Then you find out that the people who filled my shopping cart and sent me out there were two terrorists groups, oh – I’m supposed to STILL be innocent because, after all “I was just carrying lumber.”

        Just curious – would they allow these shipments to be inspected?

      • Some supporters of the flotilla announced on 28 March: “A violent response from Israel will breathe new life into the Palestine solidarity movement, drawing attention to the blockade.”[83][84] On 29 May, Aljazeera broadcast footage of some activists on the MV Mavi Marmara participating in a chant invoking battle against Jews.[85][86]

        From the Wikipedia entry on the “Free Gaza Flotilla”:

        Prior to the flotilla’s launch, some of the activists who would later die during the MV Mavi Marmara clash spoke of dreams of martyrdom. Ali Khaider Benginin told his family before leaving, “I am going to be a shahid; I dreamt I will become a shahid – I saw in a dream that I will be killed.”[87] His wife also said that he “constantly prayed to become a martyr.”[85] On 3 June, the IDF released footage from a Press TV interview before the raid in which a flotilla passenger says, “With the help of God, I will be a shahid.”[88]

        No terrorists on board? Highly unlikely.

  12. the Arbourist,

    ” So how do you define right and wrong Mr.Kaine, are you an absolutist as your sometimes conservative pedigree indicates or perhaps somewhere closer to the relativist point of view on what is right and wrong? Somewhere in between? ”

    You are too theoretical in your outlook on war. Your kind of moral relativism gets people killed. Rockets have come from Gaza and killed Israelis. Israel puts a naval blockade on Gaza and lets food and medical supplies through because nothing else has stopped the missiles. Turkey sends a bunch of martyr wannabes to break the blockade, some get killed like they wanted to.

    So why is this so hard for you to grasp ? JFK put a blockade around Cuba. If the Russians had tried to break it they would have been dead. What is the difference ? The Israelis are fighting for survival. Why is this so hard for you??????

    • Israel puts a naval blockade on Gaza and lets food and medical supplies through because nothing else has stopped the missiles.

      So rather than dealing with the reason for the missiles, (i.e. the illegal occupation) it is better to institute harsh collective punishment on the people of Gaza. Brilliant, make their lives so miserable all they have left is hate. It has been working well so far…

      Turkey sends a bunch of martyr wannabes to break the blockade, some get killed like they wanted to.

      I highly doubt anyone wanted to be killed, aside from the religiously deluded. I remind you, they were attacked and boarded in international waters. If Iran had done the exact same thing, the world would be in an uproar over the blatant killings and piracy perpetrated on the high seas by a rogue state.

      You are too theoretical in your outlook on war. Your kind of moral relativism gets people killed.

      So why is this so hard for you to grasp ?

      Moral relativism is a nuanced way of looking at moral and ethical issues. There are very few moral absolutes and dividing issues into “right” and “wrong” often leads to a greater misinterpretation of the issue in the first place.

      Moral absolutism is nothing to brag about, it lies behind the zeal of the inquisitor and the shiny gleam in a fanatics eyes. Enforcing false dichotomies on complex situations rarely makes things better.

      JFK put a blockade around Cuba. If the Russians had tried to break it they would have been dead.

      The Cuban Missile crisis was the closest known incident in which the world was faced with nuclear immolation. That sort of foolhardy brinkmanship has no place in the civilized world.

      What is the difference ? The Israelis are fighting for survival.

      The Palestinians are also fighting for survival. Their claim to lands and two state solution are valid and supported by international law. I disagree with the actions they take against the people of Israel, but can understand their frustration over 30 years of illegal occupation.

      Is the situation at all fair? No, of course not. One has the backing of a superpower militarily, economically and diplomatically. One does not.

      Why is this so hard for you??????

      You mean to go against the media and popular consensus and recognize the plight of the people of Palestine? To see the crushing poverty and degradation of a people while their land is illegally occupied and divided up and the people are heralded onto Bhantustans?

      Neither side is particularly innocent by now, but continuing to ignore the injustice of the region will not make the problems go away.

      I can almost guarantee that calling one side or the other “evil” will not rectify the problem.

  13. The Arbourist,

    ” So rather than dealing with the reason for the missiles, (i.e. the illegal occupation) it is better to institute harsh collective punishment on the people of Gaza. ”

    No you have to deal with the missiles first. The people of Gaza are pawns of Iran .

    ” I highly doubt anyone wanted to be killed, aside from the religiously deluded. I remind you, they were attacked and boarded in international waters. ”

    I do not doubt it. People who strap bombs to children are happy to be killed for the camera. That they were attacked and boarded in international waters is irrelevant. They were warned many times not to try to break the blockade. The Israels showed a lot more restraint than I would have.

    ” If Iran had done the exact same thing, the world would be in an uproar over the blatant killings and piracy perpetrated on the high seas by a rogue state. ”

    These were not blatant killings. These people wanted to be killed for the cameras. This was not piracy. Israel did not capture these vessels for material gain. You have allowed yourself to be manipulated by a terrorist PR stunt.

    ” Moral relativism is a nuanced way of looking at moral and ethical issues. There are very few moral absolutes and dividing issues into “right” and “wrong” often leads to a greater misinterpretation of the issue in the first place. ”

    1930s appeasement resurrected. I bet you and Charles Lindberg would have been good buddies. Well maybe at least Nevile Chamberlin. Truly sad how the lessons of WW2 and the Cold War have faded from your generation .

    ” The Cuban Missile crisis was the closest known incident in which the world was faced with nuclear immolation. That sort of foolhardy brinkmanship has no place in the civilized world. ”

    So you believe in your moral relativistic way that both the Soviet action and US reaction are equally guilty ? If you were JFK, how would you have reacted to nukes in Cuba being pointed at the US?

    ” The Palestinians are also fighting for survival. Their claim to lands and two state solution are valid and supported by international law. ”

    So the Jews are murdering Palestinians at every turn ? The Israelis offered them the Moon and they said no .

    ” To see the crushing poverty and degradation of a people while their land is illegally occupied and divided up and the people are heralded onto Bhantustans? ”

    Again the people in Gaza are pawns of Iran and others . Their degradation is imposed on them by their Islamic masters .

    ” I can almost guarantee that calling one side or the other “evil” will not rectify the problem. ”

    You become what you do. Islamic militants have used terrorism as a political and military tactic for decades . They use evil and have become it .

  14. Arb:”So rather than dealing with the reason for the missiles, (i.e. the illegal occupation) it is better to institute harsh collective punishment on the people of Gaza.”

    AS: No you have to deal with the missiles first. The people of Gaza are pawns of Iran.

    The severity of the rocket attacks and Israeli attacks on Palestinians seem to be a bit out of place quantitatively for this argument to work.

    From the Blog Globally Avoidable Mortality:

    […] From the above information, we can that estimate that, as of April 2006, a further 1,135 Palestinians have been killed and 12,594 wounded since February 2005 and that a total of 5,144 Palestinians have been killed (including an estimated 952 children) and 57,100 have been wounded since September 2000

    vs.

    4. From the above information, all derived from the Israel Ministry of Foreign Affairs, we can calculate that as of April 2006 there have been 4,758 terrorism deaths in Israel since 1920 and 2,178 since the occupation of the West Bank and Gaza (the Occupied Palestinian Territories) and the Golan Heights (Syria) in 1967.

    Now, Mr.Scott the balance of violence and killings might point toward finding a just peaceable solution, with one of the first steps being stopping the collective punishment of the people of Gaza. They could be puppets of Saddam-Hitler-Pol-Pot , it is inconsequential to the argument that they do not deserve to be collectively punished for the actions not perpetrated on their behalf.

    That they were attacked and boarded in international waters is irrelevant.

    I hope you continue to share that view if Iran decides to board an American vessel in international waters it suspects of harbouring terrorists. They certainly have the right considering the US sponsored the last coup d’etat in their country. I would expect you to be at the front of the line demanding justice against any American terrorists having the gall to sail in international waters.

    Arb: ” Moral relativism is a nuanced way of looking at moral and ethical issues. There are very few moral absolutes and dividing issues into “right” and “wrong” often leads to a greater misinterpretation of the issue in the first place. ”

    AS:1930s appeasement resurrected. I bet you and Charles Lindberg would have been good buddies. Well maybe at least Nevile Chamberlin. Truly sad how the lessons of WW2 and the Cold War have faded from your generation .

    How do you jump to the conclusion that I was talking about appeasement? I mean other than to construct a strawman about my argument which you demolish sophomorically for no real reason? Avoiding a binary viewpoint is critical for coming to any reasonable analysis of this situation specifically and the Middle East in general.

    So you believe in your moral relativistic way that both the Soviet action and US reaction are equally guilty ? If you were JFK, how would you have reacted to nukes in Cuba being pointed at the US?

    No, but the Soviet Union did not just decide one day to say ‘Oh hey, lets get some nukes near the US, just to piss them off’. Their actions were a result of the US stationing nuclear weapons in Turkey and Italy that could wipe Moscow off the map. Not simply because they were the “Evil Empire” and but rather as a deterrent against the US’s aggressive moves in their own ‘backyard’.

    ” Arb: The Palestinians are also fighting for survival. Their claim to lands and two state solution are valid and supported by international law. ”

    AS: So the Jews are murdering Palestinians at every turn ? The Israelis offered them the Moon and they said no .

    Actually there has been a history of refusal on the part of Israel and its backing nation, the US to come to a meaningful deal with the Palestinians.

    A lot of what the two sides to this issue have to say happens during this debate between Dershowitz and Chomsky. This is only the first part, put it is a interesting debate to follow to its conclusion.

    Again the people in Gaza are pawns of Iran and others . Their degradation is imposed on them by their Islamic masters .

    And again that is not relevant to how they are being treated. Their ‘Islamic masters’ are not building walls around their settlements and expropriating the viable land and water resources. That is squarely in the purview of Israel, what they are doing is illegal and should be stopped.

    You become what you do. Islamic militants have used terrorism as a political and military tactic for decades .

    It works both ways though, the crimes we commit against other nations piss them off as well. We are just as guilty at times as the militants of committing terrorist acts. The nations that we plunder to maintain our status of living are rightfully pissed off at us. Would you not want to strike back against those who rob your country, rig your elections and generally keep government serving the needs of business rather than people?

    We support many such dictators because it is good for business, not good for people.

    They use evil and have become it

    The erosion of civil rights and liberties continues in the US. Torture is still on the table and its corrosive effects are still threatening the democratic foundations of the US.

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