Swedish Ship in Flotilla Sabotaged


More high drama on the high seas.

From ei:

A ship due to join the Gaza Freedom Flotilla was sabotaged in the Greek port of Piraeus today according to organizers. A Swedish-language statement issued by Ship to Gaza described damage to the ship’s propeller shaft. Here is a rapid translation of the statement by The Electronic Intifada:

At 5.30 pm Swedish time on Monday it was discovered that Ship to Gaza’s passenger boat “Juliano” was the victim of sabotage in the port of Piraeus [Greece]. Hostile divers destroyed the propeller house and cut the propeller shaft. No one was injured in the attack.

Ship to Gaza has documented the sabotage using its own camera equipped divers. A first inspection was carried out to repair the damage before the planned departure at the end of this week.

Passenger boat “Juliano” (named after Juliano Meir Khamis, the murdered actor and director at Freedom Theatre in Jenin) is owned jointly by the Ship to Gaza organizations in Sweden, Norway and Greece.

In a first comment ‘Ship to Gaza’ spokesperson Mattias Gardell said:

“It’s one thing for a foreign power to press the Greek government to delay our voyage with red tape. It is quite another thing for enemy agents to operate on Greek territory…”

Now, it sounds like they don’t know with 100% certainty who is involved in the sabotage, so, we’ll leave it at that.

I will say this though- If I had been a public relations firm working with the Israeli government regarding how to deal with the publicity surrounding the Flotilla, I would have told them to do the opposite of what everyone is expecting them to do. Instead of running around fear-mongering, huffing and puffing and trying to silence journalists and threaten governments, I would have told them to send out a statement saying:

“The Flotilla is an unnecessary provocation that intrudes on Israeli sovereignty. However, Israel is offering to meet with the Flotilla organizers in an effort to discuss how to prevent an avoidable confrontation and also offer to offload supplies at the port closest to Gaza. Israel stresses that it will maintain the blockade while ensuring essential supplies get to the people of Gaza.”

Or something like that. Now, I’m not saying that I agree with the substance of what I just wrote above- in fact I don’t, not at all. I’m just putting myself in the Israeli government’s propaganda shoes and trying to demonstrate how Israel could have turned the tables on their detractors while actually coming across looking moderately reasonable. For a change. It would have totally caught everyone off guard. Who would have condemned them for that response?

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About Stacy

Attorney, Publisher, Foreign Policy wonk

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7 Comments on “Swedish Ship in Flotilla Sabotaged”

  1. Carolyn-Rodham Says:

    Stupid, stupid, stupid move, Israel.
    Don’t forget the world is watching how you conduct yourselves.

    Reply

    • JasonF Says:

      Yeah but with the US ready to rationalize or ignore everything Israel does, why should Israel care? Even if the rest of the word was outraged – and they aren’t- so long as the US has Israel’s back nothing matters. We’ve created this monster and it’s totally out of control.

      Reply

  2. Pilgrim Says:

    Stacy, several people have said this to me about the Israel-Palestine business, “It’s a complex issue…”

    I have said to the most recent person to make that statement, “I wish someone would explain that to me.”

    What I sense is it’s a way of saying there is equivalency betwixt the parties. I do not see the equivalency.

    Reply

    • Pilgrim Says:

      and these are pretty liberal types

      Reply

    • Stacy Says:

      @Pilgrim:

      At this stage of the game, I don’t think it’s complex. What is complex to me is the history- the formation of Israel and what happened immediately prior, the British Mandate, partition, and all the UN resolutions pertaining to I-P.

      But right now pretty much everyone knows what has to happen to achieve two states but at this stage the peace rejectionists are content to have their cake and eat it too- why negotiate a settlement when Israel can continue to expropriate land and change the facts on the ground without any consequences? The plan is to strategically place settlements throughout the occupied territories and around places like Jerusalem so that Israel can say “we can’t possibly give up those areas- we’ve built infrastructure, roads, raised families, built schools and water treatment plants etc.” The only thing Israel will grant the Palestinians are pockets of land with non-contiguous borders and limited sovereignty- basically, South African-style Bantustans.

      The U.S. govt, the Israelis, the media, the Lobby and the Jewish community like to pretend the two parties have equal negotiating power- they don’t. Israel holds most, if not all, the cards. The Palestinians are under military occupation, stateless, have no legal recourse against legal violations against them, dont’ have freedom of movement/travel (in Gaza and some parts of the West Bank), etc. They don’t even have the right to PEACEFUL resistance or protest. In fact, really the only card the Palestinians have to really dramatically impact the situation is terrorism or violent resistance. But that’s not a good option.

      Then you have the Myth of the Honest Broker- the United States. We have spent decades throwing our substantial weight and protection behind the stronger of the two parties- Israel. It’s ridiculous. The Palestine Papers showed that the Palestinians were more than prepared to give up a lot of what they had previously insisted on keeping in order to get an agreement but the US and Israel refused.

      I used to believe in the peace process but now I see it is all a ruse to provide cover for Israel while they gobble up more land while protesting that they “have no partner for peace.”

      Israel’s headed for apartheid. In fact, they are halfway there.

      That’s my opinion at least.

      Reply

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