55 thoughts on “Israel’s Anti-Flotilla Jihad: Haaretz Spews IDF Lies – Tikun Olam תיקון עולם إصلاح العالم
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  1. I don’t believe for a second that Barak Ravid or Danny Ayalon believes a word of this blatant lie. Only a few hours ago Israel said it knows we are peaceful and aren’t carrying any kind of weapons. Now, probably at the request of the IDF which is just itching for a repeat of last year’s massacre, we have become dangerous jihadists thirsty for Jewish blood.

    This is clearly an attempt to not only frighten us but also to excuse the IDF commandos in advance for injuring and possibly killing some of us.

    I would willingly stake my life on this: There is no passenger on board any of the flotilla boats who would raise a hand even in self defense against any Israeli militant who attacks us.

    Israel’s latest pathetic attempt to cover its ass in advance would be amusing except for the fact we know how vulnerable we all are, and how defenseless against anything and everything the IDF plans to use in attacking us.

    Even for Israel which is known for its lies, this is a new low.

  2. Mr. Silverstein
    You have a very selective way of reading Israeli originated news.
    Apparently Israeli intelligence gathered enough evidence that Hamas related people such as Amin Abu Rashed, Muhammad Ahmad Hanun are planing to participate on the Arab ship.
    according to ynet, the chemical substance is sulfur.

    why aren’t you sticking to the facts ?

    1. The chemical substance is “sulfur,” as in matches? You mean the passengers actually have the temerity to bring a box of matches aboard ship? I suppose they might light one and curse the dark & that would be construed as a lethal threat against those brave boys of the Navy commandos. In what form is the alleged sulfur & what damage is it supposed to be able to do to the IDF? Wouldn’t a BB gun or slingshot do more damage?

      As for “facts,” what are the facts? That any passenger is actually carrying any threatening chemical substance. That’s a “fact?” Acc. to Danny Ayalon & SHurat HaDin perhaps. But in the reality based world in which most of the rest of us live, this is laughable.

      1. I think they meant sulfuric acid. The claims do seem unlikely, though truthfully not impossible. However, in the absence of proof these accusations do sound a bit off. Personally, it sounds to me less as a slander and more as preparing for the (truly) worse, though unlikely, scenario.

        1. I stand corrected; it seems they are talking about big bags of sulfur. Apparently they are afraid the more extreme participants will ignite the sulfur with the intension of harming the soldiers or resisting the takeover.

      2. Matches you say ?
        Probably the oldest known explosive is black gunpowder, a mixture of charcoal (carbon), sulfur, and saltpeter (potassium nitrate). When these three chemicals are ignited, a chemical reaction takes place very quickly. The products of that reaction are carbon dioxide, carbon monoxide, sulfur dioxide, and nitric oxide (all gases) as well as potassium carbonate and potassium sulfide (two solids)

        According to the story in Ynet, they were loading bags of the substance (my guess in the form of a fertilizer, which is on the contraband list) and igniting the bags, creating an explosive reaction which will inflict real damage to the boats and people’s live (blaming Israel of course) isn’t something Hamas (known Hamas activists on the passenger list) will have second thoughts about.

        But i guess that according to someone who thinks that firing mortar shells, doe’s not constitute an act of war (because no one dies) this is not s serious enough threat.

        1. #Flotilla2 contains a distinguished Pulitzer Prize-winning author who was once a prominent black civil rights in the American South, an elderly Holocaust survivor, several children of survivors, a member of the Irish parliament, three members of the European Parliament, an MK, a group of pacifists who formerly served with totally non-violent organisations such as Christian Peacemaker Teams (I presume this is whom Mary means when she writes that most passengers wouldn’t be prepared to use violence even in self-defence), some experienced aid workers, a Native American activist who draws parallels between his own community’s dispossession and what is happening in Gaza, and a posse of journalists.

          Israel can try to paint these people as violent thugs itching for a fight, and it can desperately declare that they have got ‘Hamas activists’ on board. (We saw just how loosely they defined ‘Hamas activist’ in Cast Lead.) But they are going to have a very hard time undermining this one. My own suspicion is that they are spreading stories about passengers preparing for violence as a way of justifying any violence that they themselves might use. Due to the IDF habit of confiscating all camera and recording equipment that they find, it will be difficult for flotilla participants to prove otherwise.

          1. By Holocaust survivor I assume you mean Hedy Epstein? She left Germany in 1939 on a Kinder transport to England. Does that make her a holocaust survivor or a child of holocaust victims (her family who had to stay behind in Germany were all killed by the Nazis)? You can read about Epstein here: http://www.hedyepstein.com/

          2. You can’t even grant Epstein the designation ‘child survivor?’ If she left in ’39 she must’ve been one of the last groups to escape & survived by the skin of her teeth. I’d grant such a person the title “child survivor.” There is no such term “child of Holocaust victim” that I’ve ever heard. But I wouldn’t expect you to be generous toward any person whose politics you disliked even if they were a Holocaust survivor.

          3. Well, when it comes to Abe Foxman and his status as Holocaust survivor I guess Pea has nothing to say.
            Lots of people within the organized Hasbara have the status of ‘holocaust survivor’ though, technically, it’s not the right label.
            Hedy Epstein is a mensch, contrary to Foxman & Ltd.

          4. @ Vicky, I do not think that anyone is trying to paint the westerners as violent. I think that problem is with the “Arab Ship”

            no one in Israel suggested that the westerners on the Mavi Marmara were armed, though pictures circulated about a month ago do show the passengers were armed, weapons i have seen are not an IDF standard issue.

            @ Richard
            My mother and some of her family left Poland in 1939 to Ukraine and from the Ukraine they fled in 1942 to the Asian part of Russia, is my mother a holocaust survivor ?
            She’s a war survivor and so is Hedy Epstein, Holocaust survivor are those who actually went through the camps, or went through other horrors in Europe / Russia.
            The designation comes from the compensation people receive from the Germans, It’s not made out to belittle peoples suffering (they all did) just to create a pay scale.

          5. Oh, so Ital L has new pictures showing the passengers were armed. Well, these pictures maybe come from the same photoshop as those showing ‘a land without a people’….

            Personally, I’m against an “Arab ship”. I know very well, and so do all Arabs participating in the Flotilla (many on the two French boats ‘al-Karama’ and ‘Louise Michel’ are French of Arab origin) that the Israelis are going to spin their usual Islamophobic Anti-Arab Hasbara on the violent Arabs with a knife between the teeth and a bomb in their pocket.
            I think people should be mixed on the various boats, killing an Arab in front of Henning Mankell or Alice Walker would be more problematic than the usual procedures in the West Bank with only Arab eyewitnesses.

        2. Amusing knowledge of chemistry and a good example of a fruit from the famous Israeli education system.

          The notion of pure sulphur to be used as a chemical weapon on sailing ships is extremely far-fetched. Sulphur exists everywhere in the nature and as a burning material it is not the best alternative as a weapon. Describing sulphur as a dangerous chemical is comical. H2O = water consists of hydrogen and oxygen. Both could in theory be used as components of “fire bombs”. So a water bottle is in the normal propagandist thinking a dangerous chemical weapon arsenal.

          Producing sulphur acid is more complex than a normal IDF propagandist thinks. Pure sulphur is not enough to make the acid and making sulphur acid on-board a sailing ship is hardly possible. It would be much easier to take ready sulphur acid on the trip. So the acid theory is not very convincing.

          Hinting that the sulphur could be used as a component of black gun powder one of the most hilarious claims ever made in this conflict. Well why not take ready gunpowder to the trip. By the way napalm would be much more effective and making Molotov cocktails is no rocket science.

          The passengers on a ship would in no circumstances would use fire as a mean to defend the ship and themselves. Why, simply because they have limited means of escaping a burning ship. The likelihood that the attacker, IDF, will use fire as a “final solution” is much greater and so likelier. It is obvious that why IDF is now speaking of incendiary chemicals is, that it intends to torch some ships and then blame the Gaza activists. Preparing the “evidence” of the battlefield in the normal Israeli way.

          1. Mr. Hurtta
            about a month ago Israeli channel news 10 circulated a short piece about the fact that the some of the peaceful “peace activists” aboard the Mavi Marmara carried guns.
            such a picture you can see in the following link
            http://rotter.net/forum/scoops1/15536.shtml (it looks like an MK5, not a standard IDF issue weapon)
            http://news.nana10.co.il/Article/?ArticleID=806423 (time Marker – 0.22)

            as for your long explanation, it’s nonsense for few reasons:
            1. Its much easier buying Ammonium sulfate fertilizer, then Gun Powder (in large quantities)
            2. Those who brought guns to a ship boarded with mostly real peace activists – Used them very cynically.
            You think they would hesitate doing that again ?

          2. If any of this were true, the IDF would’ve displayed the weapons for the world media to see as it would be in Israel’s interests to show the world that the passengers were armed. Also the fact that the video was distributed precisely one year after the Mavi Marmara massacre and not just after the event seems suspicious at the very least. Did it take a yr for Israel to find this video (or create it)?

            It’s ammonium NITRATE buddy, not sulfate. But even if there was such a thing as ammonium sulfate fertilizer is it your conention that the passengers have brought the equivalent of TNT on board the ship? And to do what? Blow it up in a ship-wide mass suicide attack on the IDF. If so, that’s simply WILD beyond belief. Do you have any video documenting this dastardly plan? Perhaps Guy Seeman can tweet it?

          3. Itai L do you call that evidence (channel 10 news video)? That cut video with a shady picture of a hand with some item, it could be a pistol, but it could be a million other items. If one man of hundreds had a pistol, which he did not use, can you call the flotilla as an armed terrorist/military force. Did any Israeli have gun bullet wounds (and not caused by friendly fire)? No they did not.

            With what would you defend yourself and your friends (possibly your family) if some hostile forces would come to your ship on international water from the dark with ships and helicopters and with the obvious intention to kill and injure you. Without doubt you would catch the nearest metal stick/bar and begin to fight in panic. The Israelis were not friendly polite customs officers on the marked border.

            It is idiotic to blabber about ammonium sulphate fertilizer. Making it from raw sulphur is not possible, sulphur acid is needed and that even you could not produce in small moving ship.

            Itai I could ask to counter your final question. Israel has killed people in the previous flotilla, do you think they would hesitate to kill even more in the next? Suddenly beginning to speak about “fire chemicals” indicates clearly that Israel will use fire in their future flotilla attacks. I doubt that even you are not so naive to claim that a Molotov cocktail is the best way to defend against the attacker in a small ship. It is the best way for Israel to destroy ships, kill in masses and blame the victims.

          4. Mr. Hurtta
            “Did any Israeli have gun bullet wounds (and not caused by friendly fire)? No they did not”

            Yes they did, if i am not mistaken 3 of them (if i am mistaken it was 2) were fired with 9MM bullets that did not come from an IDF issued gun. you can look-up the English version of the Terkel committee it is listed there.

            and to answer your question, Israel will not hesitate to use force against those who are trying to run it’s borders, we demonstrated that fact in more then one opportunity in the last few month.
            Israel Sovereignty is recognized by the entire world, Including Ban Ki-Moon (who called the flotilla unnecessary provocation) the US president, US state Department, and other free world leaders.

            If there is a group of people who wish to challenge that….they are risking their own life.

            as for your chemistry related nonsense, look at the following you tube video, sulfur and flower its all it takes,

          5. Ital you admit that Gaza is still a part of Israel by speaking about the Israeli borders and defending them. 😀

            So the excuse that Israel left Gaza and Gaza is a independent entity is pure propaganda. Which makes the siege and deliberate starving of the millions in Gaza an equal crime which the Warsaw Ghetto was. The recognition of Israel’s sovereignty is a fact, so is a international recognition of what is Israel. That doesn’t include Gaza, West Bank and Golan. Don’t you agree?

            Stopping ships using violence on international waters is not approved by anybody else than Israel.

            By the way Ital it is Turkel not Terkel committee. I am sure that your Terkel committee found bullet wounds by non IDF weapons. The problem is that few outside Israel believe in such “evidence”. There is no ballistic evidence in the Turkel report that the bullet shot at soldier number 5 was “non IDF”, there is only the claim made by IDF. And such claims are worthless propaganda not real facts.

            Turkel complained on page 266 that bullets and shells were not collected in an organized manner and neither were weapons alleged to have been used by IHH activists. (No mention was made of any examination of IDF weapons.)

          6. Mr. Hurtta
            It seems like you are deliberately twisting Turkel commission’s statements, am i right ?
            the committee list few reasons for it’s lack of ability to dissect and reconstruct an event which took place month prior to the committee gathering, The time, the fact that bodies were moved, the fact that no proper interrogation was done etc. the committee doe’s not list the absent of ballistic exams as one of those reasons (especially not on page 266)

            this is what the committee stated on Soldier (Page 253) # 2 “Soldier no. 2 was shot in the stomach. The round that hit soldier no. 2 went through his body and was never recovered. As a result, no ballistics test could be performed to determine whether or not it came from an IDF weapon. However, it has been suggested in testimony and
            in a written submission to the Commission that soldier no. 2 was shot before there was an opportunity for Israeli military personnel to unholster their weapons.”

          7. The round was never recovered? Gimme a break. The IDF had control of that vessel for months fr. the moment they captured it. If they “couldn’t find” the bullet they didn’t want to because he was shot by friendly fire. I simply do not believe this–not credible at all. And what does “it has been suggested” mean? By whom? And having what specific knowledge or expertise that would grant any credibility to the statement??

          8. Richard, how many times did you fire a weapon ?
            Bullets behave in strange ways, no to mention that if the soldier was shut while located between the shooter and the horizon, and it’s a flash wound, there will be no slug to find, as it will be in the bottom of the sea.

        3. But i guess that according to someone who thinks that firing mortar shells, doe’s not constitute an act of war (because no one dies) this is not s serious enough threat.

          From your other posts here, I gather that you and Job are fairly ignorant about the laws of war regarding reprisals. You talk as if the rest of us should be able to make heads or tails out of Israel’s nonsensical explanations. The Israeli Supreme Court justified extrajudicial killings on the dubious basis that a continuous state of war has existed in the area of Judea, Samaria, and Gaza ever since the first intifada in the 1980s.

          You can’t have a war without recognizing the belligerent rights of the other side. In 1967, Secretary of State Rusk explained to the Egyptians that there were those with considerable international legal background who felt that, as long as the UAR maintained a state of war against Israel (via the blockade), Israel could not “commit aggression” against the UAR.

          In 1967 Israel’s Prime Minister sent a cable to President Johnson which claimed that the closure of the Straits of Tiran was an “illegal blockade”.

          Many of us, like Ambassador Murray, do not accept that the Oslo Accords or the Quartet Road Map are merely war time modus vivendi agreements. But if you insist that a state of war exists, then Secretary Rusk’s comments apply to Israel’s blockade and incursions against Hamas.

          Thirdly, Murray’s claim that Hamas’s rocket attacks are permissible by international law at times of war is preposterous and stupid (notwithstanding his illustrious credentials). These attacks are directed exclusively towards civilians. In times of war civilians get hurt as collateral damage, but attacks directed at civilians (such as the bombing of Dresden) are illegal. If Hamas would have targeted military bases that would have been legal.

          Sorry, but we know for a fact from reading Moshe Sharret’s diary that in the past Israel routinely conducted reprisals and “anticipatory reprisals” that targeted civilians. It continues to use reprisals, such as home demolitions, against civilians even today. For decades the governments of Israel have rejected both the de jure applicability and customary status of the Geneva Conventions of 1949 and the First Additional Protocol. So, in many instances the Israeli courts have only been willing to apply the laws and customs reflected in the regulations annexed to the Hague Convention of 1907.

          During the trials of The WWII War Criminals, the opinion of Hersh Lauterpacht from Oppenheim’s International Law, 6th and 8th Editions was cited to define reprisals and to determine when reprisals against civilians, towns, and villages were authorized in accordance with Article 50 of the Hague Convention (see pages 3 & 4).

          Here is the guidance from section “6.2.4 Reprisal” of the 2007 Edition of the US Navy Marine Corps, and Coast Guard “Commander’s Handbook On The Law Of Naval Operations:

          A belligerent reprisal is an enforcement measure under the law of armed conflict consisting of an act that would otherwise be unlawful but which is justified as a response to the previous unlawful acts of an enemy. The sole purpose of a reprisal is to induce the enemy to cease its illegal activity and to comply with the law of armed conflict in the future. Reprisals may be taken against enemy armed forces, enemy civilians other than those in occupied territory, and enemy property.”(see page 6-4)

          The ICRC maintains a web page on the evolving US guidance as historical evidence of state practice regarding its own customary rule 145 on Reprisals.

          So if Israel is maintaining a continuous state of war via a blockade, many believe that Hamas can’t commit aggression against it. When the headlines in Israel advise us that: The IDF has fired more than 5,100 shells at Gaza in six weeks or that families have been killed while playing soccer or having a picnic at the beach, Israel is simply inviting reprisals against its own civilian population.

          When Israel recognizes Palestine as another State, with all of the rights and responsibilities of a High Contracting Party to the 1949 Geneva Conventions and other international laws, then we will be able to begin to understand its positions and policies. But for now, it is just repeating the same old hasbara nonsense.

  3. I believe the Al Aqsa Foundation is the Hamas charitable foundation in question.

    They had been active in Holland throughout the 1990’s and I believe the government there attempted to shut them down in the early 2000’s.

    As for the ABSPP, I believe they are part of Hamas’s “Union for Good” which provides funding to various Hamas charities.

    Al Aqsa in Holland is also part of the Union of Good, if I am not mistaken.

  4. The latest is that another ship has been sabotaged. Amira Hass is reporting that the “Juliano” carrying passengers from Norway, Greece and Sweden had its propeller shaft broken off. The ship is inspected daily by a scuba diver.

    Could this be the work of Mossad breaking the law again in a sovereign country? What if other ships have been unknowingly sabotaged. Hopefully other inspections will be done to insure the safety of these passengers.

    This is starting to remind me of all the sabotage attempts, delay tactics against Iran’s nuclear program.


    Israel definitely wants to distinguish itself as the most hated state in the world.

  5. There is not a shred of truth to any of Israel’s latest desperate claims. There is not a single passenger on board any of the flotilla boats who isn’t known to be unarmed and without intent to harm any human being on earth. We don’t just lower the gangplank and invite on board anybody who claims an interest in sailing to Gaza. We would not risk the safety of other passengers by allowing on board anyone not sworn to non-violence.

    There are no weapons. I even left my knitting and wooden knitting needles behind lest I be accused of carrying an instrument with which I might hurt a commando. As to chemicals, perhaps they are speaking of MSG in food items, or the toothpaste and deodorants used to make being crammed together without water in which to wash ourselves more bearable. Chemicals for sure in the soles of my sandals, our plastic spoons. My nylon jacket? My hearing aids? My camera? (which of course the commandos will confiscate; I do hope they will be extra careful not to expose themselves to its dangerous toxins.)

    There will be nothing on board or on any passenger’s person that will be used to harm a hair on the masked head of one of Israel’s finest. If one of them trips and falls while boarding, or accidentally shoots him/herself in the foot, our medics will offer whatever aid we have available.

    In short, this is nothing more than yet another attempt to justify the violence they intend to inflict on several hundred unarmed civilians, some of us old enough to be their grandparent or great grandparent.

    Mazel tov, Israel!

  6. @Pea
    Hedy is an only child of parents who were desperately trying to escape Germany before the outbreak of WW11. They were able to get Hedy accepted with Kindertransport and at the age of 14 she was literally forced by her parents to board a train for England where she spent the war years.

    Hedy’s mother and father were sent separately to a series of internment camps in Vichy France, and Hedy still treasures the few letters she received from them.

    Not long ago Hedy and I, along with Greta Berlin and Alison Weir, visited the Rivesaltes internment camp in Southwestern France where Hedy’s last letter from mother, dated August 1942, was written. We saw the railway tracks her mother had mentioned, telling her young daughter of the long walk as they struggled with their suitcases to reach that enormous, desolate place, miles from anywhere.

    It is still desolate, without guards or guides, just rows and rows of brick barracks in various stages of decay. It took us an hour to find the roofless windowless brick structure on which the painted number 21 was still visible. Hedy this tiny woman well into her eighties, stood silently among the weeds that grew through the walls and brick floor, and imagined her mother having been there, writing that final letter to her beloved only child during her last days before being shipped to Auschwitz. It was a very moving moment for Alison, Greta and me. who couldn’t begin to imagine what Hedy must be feeling, knowing her mother, and her father who was shipped around the same time from a nearby camp, were sent to Auschwitz and their deaths.

    Hedy has been troubled by accusations she is not a Holocaust survivor, so she asked those who decide such things if that is what she is. She was assured she is indeed a Holocaust Survivor. To suggest otherwise is petty and offensive and reveals much about one who would make such an accusation.

  7. I didn’t accuse anyone of anything. I simply asked a question because it came up in conversation. I thank you for the responses but I could have done without the snark. Mary’s response was most welcome and considerate.

    As for Abe Foxman, his Holocaust experience was a little different than Epstein’s – as you know he was cared for by his Catholic nanny while his parents were sent to the Ghetto. Sheltering a Jewish child was a capital offense in occupied Poland after all. But both had horrid experiences and I sure didn’t mean to diminish anyone’s loss.

  8. @ Itai L
    There were no guns on board the Mavi Marmjara, There were no weapons of any kind on the Mavi or on any of the other flotilla boats. It is ludicrous for the IDF to suggest otherwise. As Richard said, had there been a single gun we would have seen photos of it. To claim a soldier was shot but the bullet disappeared is pathetic. Israel is pretty good at shooting members of its own, as it did in Cast Lead when out of a total of 10 IDF killed, 4 were victims of friendly fire. In the case of the Mavi Marmara massacre, had a single IDF militant been seriously hurt by anyone other than a comrade, we would have been regaled with photos of his wounds, of weeping and wailing of his grieving family, he would have been awarded the Israeli equivalent of the Croix de guerre, and a street in Tel Aviv would have been named after him. Such was the hoopla resulting from the fiasco wherein Israel murdered nine unarmed civilians during an act of piracy in international water.

    It seems clear some passengers, upon witnessing their comrades being shot in the head, picked up whatever was available that could be used to defend against the deadly attack. There were many women and a baby on board, and it must have seemed they too were in danger from IDF bullets. I personally will not attempt to defend myself if the same thing happens on the TAHRIR, nor I believe will passengers on any other flotilla boats.

    But to repeat: There were no guns on the MAVI MARMARA.

    1. Mary,
      A thick line connects Teheran and your location. In Teheran the president denies the holocaust (despite undisputed evidence) and @ your location you deny the presence of weapons aboard the Mavi Marmara despite: Soldiers witnessing weapons (reflected in their communications – available all over the internet), Shot wounds of non IDF bullets on the soldiers, and weapon pictures.
      The fact the IDF didn’t display such a weapon is meaningless as those weapons have been thrown overboard by the “peace activists” who used them.
      Excuse me for asking, where you on the top deck during the raid? Or was the top deck blocked and occupied only by IHH personal?
      Have to tell you how impressed I am with your marketing campaign, from marketing Mrs. Epstein as a holocaust survivor (she’s a war survivor – huge difference) via the claims that the Israel using Jewry financials power to influence Greece decisions (Jews control the money in the world, is a well-known racist claim) to your denial of evidence presented.

      1. Itai L,
        I don’t think you realize how ridiculous you sound as you continue chewing on that old bone.

        To equate holocaust denial with denying there were guns in the possession of passengers on the Mavi Marmara is disgusting. The only guns on the Mavi Marmara were brought there by Israeli pirates, and the only guns dropped overboard were guns dropped by Israeli pirates and thrown overboard by unarmed passengers who wanted to be sure they couldn’t be used again by anybody against anybody.

        Any and all photos of such weapons supposedly taken on board by passengers were proved to be fake. Even Israel quickly stopped claiming there were any guns in the possession of passengers. But still you can’t admit it was all lies by an embarrassed IDF that proved itself to be incompetent as well as violent. I don’t blame you for trying to cover up for them. I would be embarrassed too.

      2. A thick line connects Teheran and your location. In Teheran the president denies the holocaust (despite undisputed evidence) and @ your location you deny the presence of weapons aboard the Mavi Marmara

        I agree with Mary and I find this analogy HIGHLY offensive. My comment rules specifically state that abuse of the Holocaust to score political pts. is absolutely not permitted. So you have 2 choices. You can apologize to mary for this outrageous statement or you will be banned. I leave the choice to you. I expect an answer within 24 hours.

        You’ve presented NO PROOF whatsoever that IDF soldiers were shot by bullets from guns other than the IDF. And soldiers testimony is absolutely not credible in this circumstance.

        those weapons have been thrown overboard by the “peace activists” who used them.

        That’s nonsense as well. If France can find an airplane in 12,000 feet of ocean then Israel could find an alleged weapon allegedly thrown overboard. And how do you know that any weapon was thrown overboard? You see, I’m beginning to not like this line of argument or the person raising it. It’s like throwing spaghetti on the wall hoping some of it will stick.

        Have to tell you how impressed I am with your marketing campaign, from marketing Mrs. Epstein as a holocaust survivor (she’s a war survivor – huge difference)

        This too is a deeply offensive comment, completed impermissible in this blog. You are a conscienceless repugnant individual.

        Jews control the money in the world, is a well-known racist claim

        Accusing me even remotely of anti-Semitism is again a hanging offense around here. If you wish to come back you’ll do as I suggest above & read the comment rules carefully.

        1. 1. The Holocaust and the events led to the Holocaust were about denying the right of the Jews for Self Defense.
          That is what i see in common, According to the views of the flotilla members, Israel actions are Illegal and Israel has no right for self defense. i didn’t intend to score points, i simply stated what i think, and i think i was doing that in a very respectful way. If Mary was offended by that i apologize.

          2. “If France can find an airplane in 12,000 feet of ocean then Israel could find an alleged weapon allegedly thrown overboard.”
          This comparison of yours is so out of touch, i don’t know if i should laugh or i should cry, i think you need to do some reading about sonar systems, and the signature returned from object to learn that what you suggested as simply unrealistic. Besides even If Israel would find the alleged weapons, you would state that it was most likely fabricated. You can listen to the soldiers communications about real weapons “נשק חם” and you can take it to sound specialist who would acknowledge the real stress in the soldiers voices.
          3. Mrs. Epstein – Richard
          My mother and some of her family left Poland in 1939 to Ukraine and from the Ukraine they fled in 1942 to the Asian part of Russia, is my mother a holocaust survivor ?
          She’s a war survivor and so is Hedy Epstein, Holocaust survivor are those who actually went through the camps, or went through other horrors in Europe / Russia.
          The designation comes from the compensation people receive from the Germans, It’s not made out to belittle peoples suffering (they all did) just to create a pay scale.
          4. I didn’t accuse you of anything, the statements accusing Israel in trying to apply financial pressure on Greece came straight from the Flotilla organizers. and excuse me i find it border line antisemitic.

          1. @ Itai L
            Why is it you are so obsessed with Jews? Even the holocaust, in which millions of Jews were murdered, wasn’t solely about Jews, since almost as many non Jews as Jews were its victims. Nevertheless I too tend to think of it as a Jewish holocaust, probably because the other groups weren’t so vocal and pro-active in making sure we are never allowed to forget. Nor should we, but my concern personally is about all of Hitler’s victims.

            As for the flotilla, why is denying IDF and Israel’s unsubstantiated claims there were weapons on board the Mavi Marmara or other flotilla boats in any way similar to denial of the holocaust? We didn’t feel our boats were attacked by Jews, but you seem to be fixated on claiming every criticism of Israel’s policies is an attack on Jews. If you sincerely believe Jews have a right to self-defense, then surely you must agree that any and all Jewish passengers on our boats have the right to self-defense too? Fortunately you needn’t worry about that, because each and every passenger has signed a declaration of non-violence, so your brave Israeli (Jewish in your language) commandos have nothing to fear from us.

            On my boat, the Canadian TAHRIR, we have several Jews, but I don’t really know who they are because we don’t discuss our religion. It is irrelevant to all of us.

            One of our passengers, Kevin Neish, confirmed that every passenger who boarded the Mavi Marmara last year was searched to make sure he/she carried no item that could be used as a weapon. A few had ordinary pocket knives, which were tossed overboard. Alcohol… tossed overboard. The only knives were ordinary kitchen knives used to prepare food for 600 passengers. Period.

            So again, Itai, nice try. But no weapons, and certainly not any firearms.

            Thank you for the (sort of) apology.

          2. The Holocaust and the events led to the Holocaust were about denying the right of the Jews for Self Defense.

            That sounds like an awfully artificial & pat portrayal of the meaning of the Holocaust. It was certainly about that & many other things.

            Israel has no right for self defense.

            No, that’s not at all what the Flotilla stands for. Israel has a right to self defense, that is defense of its homeland and borders. But Gaza is not Israel’s homeland nor part of its borders. So therefore attacking unarmed civilians in international waters is actually aggression, not self-defense.

            excuse me i find it border line antisemitic.

            Stuff ‘n nonsense. The claim that Greece is in deep economic distress & that Israel may’ve exercised leverage either by offering an inducement or threatening to harms Greece’s economic interests is entirely credible given that I’ve proven here that it did the same regarding something it wanted from Ukraine. Stop playing the anti-Semitism card. And that’s not a request!

          3. @ Mary
            after our last discussion i decided not to argue with you, especially about Holocaust related matters. It’s pointless.
            I do however want to express how shocked i am about your lack of historical Knowledge. Though many non Jews were murdered by Nazi Germany, The Jews were the only group who’s destruction was orchestrated. Please get you familiar with the Wannsee Conference and stop talking nonsense.

          4. That’s not entirely true as 1 million Gays were murdered along with every Bolshevik and union leader they could find. 20 million Russians alone were murdered as a result of the Nazi invasion. But they did reserve special relish for killing Jews.

          5. Mr. Silverstein
            what do you mean “That’s not entirely true”
            As i stated (and history stand by it) The only Group who’s extermination was planned, with research, numbers, papers, were the Jews. The “Final Solution” Developed and adopted at the Wannsee Conference dealt with the Jews explicitly, and in that the Jews differ from any other group of people that was murdered in the holocaust. Are you claiming that my statement is wrong ? from the minutes of the Wannsee Conference “At the beginning of the discussion Chief of the Security Police and of the SD, SS-Obergruppenführer Heydrich, reported that the Reich Marshal had appointed him delegate for the preparations for the final solution of the JEWISH question in Europe and pointed out that this discussion had been called for the purpose of clarifying fundamental questions”


          6. And you’re presuming that because there was a Wansee conference dealing w. annihilation of Jews there was no “research, numbers, papers,” etc. dedicated to exterminating gays, the disabled, labor union & Communist leaders? C’mon. The Nazis exterminated all of them out of an organized ideological animus. They devoted special hatred to Jews but aren’t we splitting hairs here to determine who they hated more?

          7. Mr. Silverstein,
            The proof as they say, is in the pudding.
            Can you show me an evidence to such an event ?
            or are you claiming that the Jews were the only group that bothered conducting research on the NAZI machine ?

          8. Yes, I actually attended a conference on this subject & happen to have notes to prove it. What do you take me for? Do you think the Nazis wrote down notes & minutes of mtgs. about every group they sought to exterminate? And that I have access to the archives to find them even if I knew German, which I don’t? Stop wasting my time & everyone else’s here w. yr nonsense. You’re beating dead horses. Move on.

      3. Ital L is totally brainwashed. He accuses Mary indirectly of denying the Holocaust by comparing her opinions to that of the garden gnome in Teheran, and at the same time he accuses her of overplaying the status of Hedy Epstein by calling her a ‘Holocaust survivor’. He should maybe sit down with his superiors and decide for ONE point of attack.

        Comparing the denial that weapons were on the Mavi Marmara to Holocaust denial is just the ugly face of Zionism at it’s worst.

        I wonder whether Ilan L is insinuating that there is the same absence of proofs for both actions …
        Instead of respecting the dead ones, they are taken out of their graves whenever it serves the Israeli propaganda. The commodification of a tragedy. Simply disgusting.

        By the way, I realize more and more, here and elsewhere, that many Israelis do all they can to nourish antisemitism by deliberately talking about Jews instead of Israelis or Zionists.

      4. @ Itai L

        via the claims that the Israel using Jewry financials power to influence Greece decisions (Jews control the money in the world, is a well-known racist claim) to your denial of evidence presented.

        Are you addressing this to Mary? What do you mean, where did she say this? I’d like to see please..provide a link. Thanks

  9. @ Itai L

    Thank you for agreeing not to waste any more of my time by trying to twist this discussion about Israeli pirates attacking unarmed passengers on the high seas into anything remotely similar to the holocaust.

    1. A Gaza businessman would of course see the major problem as exporting his goods to his customers. But other Gazans might see this differently. But that’s beside the point. The point isn’t what the Flotilla is bringing to Gaza, but what it is DOING, that is breaking the siege. Lifting the siege will relieve every Gazan’s problems whether they’re children or businessmen.

    2. I disagree that we are missing the target. Our target is to make Gaza Free. Israel has been very clear about its intention to keep 1.5 million people in Gaza at the brink of starvation, and if not for the fact Palestinians have learned to bring necessary food through tunnels from Egypt, the problem would be not just the malnutrition common among Gaza’s children, but actual starvation.

      Our goal is to end the blockade. It wouldn’t matter if the people of Gaza had as much food as the people in Tel Aviv. It wouldn’t matter if instead of living in tents because the IDF destroyed their homes during Cast Lead, they were living in upscale homes with swimming pools in illegal Jewish settlements in the occupied West Bank.

      The issue is that they are prisoners. Prisoners are allowed food, shelter and basic necessities of life. But who wants to live in a prison? Gaza is the largest open air prison in the world, and this is what we seek to put an end to. Once that is done, the businessman you mention will be able to export his goods and put many of Gaza’s unemployed to work.

      Humanitarian aid is important, and since last years flotilla fiasco Israel has been pressured into allowing somewhat more into Gaza (not by the grace of Israel, but donated by other countries and NGOs)

      The Palestinian people don’t need handouts. They are well educated, resourceful and industrious, and they are perfectly capable of taking care of themselves once their jailers unlock the gates to their prison.

      1. “The Palestinian people don’t need handouts. They are well educated, resourceful and industrious, and they are perfectly capable of taking care of themselves once their jailers unlock the gates to their prison”

        Hear! Hear!………and if they renounce violence and accept responsibility for control over “rogue elements” within the strip I believe that we’re going to have a winner and everybody can get on with actually BUILDING a new future …….WIN,WIN….no?

        Bon Voyage….and stay below deck if boarded,visible and sitting down with both forearms on the table.You have made your statement.

        1. @ Daniel F
          Thank you for your good wishes. It’s certainly more comfortable below deck, but as a 77 year old I am a bit concerned that the tear gas (or whatever it is they use in the West Bank these days — certainly not ordinary tear gas) will not dissipate as it will on the upper deck. I was unprepared for the effects of Israel’s special brand of tear gas my first time, in Al Ram in 2004 (now divided down the middle of the main road by the apartheid wall.) But at least I was able to run away then as on several other occasions in Bil’in.

          As for the Palestinians in Gaza controlling those who would respond violently to Israel’s almost daily acts of terrorism against the civilian population, including shooting at farmers and fishermen, I don’t think there will be a problem. Hamas has long recognized Israel’s existence, so for the life of me I don’t know why Israel continues this one sided war, even though there is such a great imbalance in number of casualties on both sides.

          During the current intifada 124 Israeli children were killed by Palestinians while 1463 Palestinian children were killed by Israelis, a ratio of 1:11, with total 1084 Israelis and 6430 Palestinians for a ratio of 1:6

          Well, I guess I do know why they do it. There is still a fair amount of land left to steal, not to mention water and other resources.

        2. if they renounce violence and accept responsibility for control over “rogue elements” within the strip I believe that we’re going to have a winner

          ‘Fraid not until Israel “renounces violence & accepts responsibility for control over” official elements within the security & military apparatus. Then I believe we’ll have a winner.

          Win, win–no?

          As for yr unsolicited advice to Mary. I’d feel a whole lot more comfortable if you were with her experiencing what she is. Then you could open yr big mouth offering such advice. Till then, cut out the snark. It annoys.

  10. @ Itai L
    Your whining is becoming tedious. Why are you so obsessed about proving Jewish suffering is alway greater than non-Jewish suffering? Do you think it is any comfort to the relatives of non-Jewish victims of Hitler to know their loved ones were disliked a little less than his Jewish victims. Dead is just as dead to a non-Jew. Nobody should have died in the holocaust. But I don’t care one whit more about Hitler’s Jewish victims than about his non-Jewish victims. In fact I am getting really tired of people like you bringing up the holocaust as if it were only about Jews every time anybody makes a valid criticism of Israel.

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