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Old 06-01-2010, 12:25 AM   #10 (permalink)
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Originally Posted by PaperBagHead View Post
First of all, am I seriously supposed to believe that the armed Israeli commandos were somehow overpowered by the civilians on-board the ship? And thrown off the ship?

The attack was confirmed by the Israeli government to have occurred on international waters, 65 km off the coast of Gaza.

I don't know much about maritime law but the fact that Israel attacked the ship on international waters is technically illegal. Or am I mistaken? Or is Israel above the law and should be left alone because it had no way of knowing what was on that boat.

The ship was clearly there to deliver aid supplies. Among the people on-board were old men, women and children.

Even if the boarding was not illegal, and as you say Israel needed to protect itself as it had no idea of what was actually on the ship, were 10 (at least) casualties really necessary? Was there no other way to check or divert the boat?
Armed commandos rappelled in. They also were using dispersal techniques, as opposed to lethal force. Both techniques put the soldiers in the unenviable position of being easy targets, considering the vessel carried over 600 people. One person rappelling in and using a paintball gun on a floating target being met by multiple hostiles with bats, metal pipes, and apparently switchblades is really not a fight in which the commando would win.

Again, the "attack" was a boarding incident after repeated warnings not to break the blockade. The violence appears to, at this point, have been initiated by those on the ship, and given the materials they had it appeared they were prepared to do so to some degree. This incident did not have to be violent. Israel had zero interest here in attacking protesters, and it seems unlikely that the elite of the elite would take it on themselves to initiate a massacre for kicks.

Video does confirm that some commandos were thrown to the lower deck, and others off the ship.

The San Remo document shows that a nation can prevent attempts to break a blockade, and this was clearly not an instance of piracy. Pirates don't tend to warn their targets.

The ship was there with TWO goals: break the blockade and deliver aid. Both were the expressed goals of the activists. Israel offered to take the aid at the port of Ashdod, search it for potential contraband, and then deliver all non-prohibited materials to the Gaza Strip via crossings.

If this were purely an aid mission they should have gone to Ashdod.

Ten casualties were wholly unnecessary. But as to whose fault those casualties are, the video seems to suggest this one's on the protesters, especially if it's confirmed that they beat an Israeli commando unconscious, took his service pistol, and fired rounds.

As for alternative means, I'd love to hear a few from you. Israel warned the ships numerous times to go to the port of Ashdod. This confrontation has been boiling for weeks. It didn't need to happen.
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