So once again, Israeli thugs are beating up poor unarmed innocents, gleefully starving out their enemies, and generally being beastly. Once again, the world unites in horrified disgust and is only prevented from intervention by the evil forces of Israel's lapdog, the Great Satan America.
If you're nodding in agreement, you have probably been listening to, well, basically every well-known news organization on the planet. The death of several activists at the hands of Israeli soldiers taking control of a Gaza-bound ship has been portrayed as the barbaric act of a wicked group which knows neither decency nor humanity, victimizing innocents who wish only to live in peace.
And you know what? That description is correct - except for being exactly backwards. The so-called "peace activists", their Gazan destination, and their supporters are all witting or unwitting agents of a wicked and inhumane group, whereas Israel has such an overpowering desire to live in peace that it no longer is willing even to properly defend itself.
But first, some background.
For as long as we've been following the conflict in the Middle East, that's exactly what it's been called: a "conflict." That word implies a long-running disagreement, which is certainly true as far as it goes - "Palestinian" is derived from the word "Philistine" whom the Israelites were fighting nearly 4000 years ago, and they're pretty much kept at it ever since barring odd intervals when the Babylonians, Egyptians, Ottoman Turks, or some other foreign power kept them from each other's throats.
In the pursuit of literary variety, there's nothing wrong with the word "conflict." Unfortunately, that word has been given a rather darker purpose: allowing writers to avoid using the correct word to describe what's going on. That word is "war."
Why does this matter? Because in international law, there are rules which apply to the proper conduct of a war. We usually hear about this from the negative point of view, as in "war crimes"; but there's a flip side as well. If you are in a war, a belligerent has certain rights which allow them to do certain violent, intrusive things with perfect legality, as long as they do them in the right way.
Why do we say that Israel is at war, and has been for a long time? Simple: the nation of Israel has been in continues conflict with the terrorist entity known as Hamas for as long as Hamas has been in existence.
The organizing charter of Hamas states that its whole purpose is the elimination of Israel from the map; it's been that way since Day 1, and from that day to this, the leaders of Hamas have sworn to achieve their goal. If an armed organization avowed to entirely wipe out your nation is not at war with you, the word has no meaning.
This transparently obvious fact has been somewhat obscured at times, because Hamas hasn't always had the power to effectively make what looks like war. Up until a few years ago, the leading Palestinian group was Yasser Arafat's Fatah organization. When he founded it, Fatah too swore the elimination of Israel. Unlike Hamas, however, Fatah removed this clause from its charter and now accepts Israel's right to exist at least rhetorically.
Unfortunately, George Bush's love of democratic forms was a little too strong for the world's good, and in 2006 he demanded that the Palestinian territories hold free and fair elections. They did; the terrorist group Hamas beat Fatah fair and square. Clearly demonstrating their commitment to the principle of "one man, one vote, one time," Hamas forces slaughtered Fatah, driving them and their supporters out of Gaza entirely.
Today, there are two separate Palestinian territories under two totally different governments that run things in totally different ways. Fatah controls the West Bank, and while there are ongoing differences with Israel there, the economy functions and trade is ongoing. Most importantly, there is not much organized violence in either direction.
Hamas-controlled Gaza is entirely different. When Israel sends pipe to Gaza for sewer construction, it gets it back in the form of murderous rockets aimed at elementary schools. Only a fool would continue supplying a belligerent enemy; only a willfully blind and irredeemably biased world community could possibly expect Israel to continue to supply their sworn enemies.
Instead, Israel has declared a perfectly valid blockade under the long-standing and long-established rules of war. Napoleon declared a blockade on England, and England on him; both tried to use their navies to enforce their policy, England with rather more success. President Abraham Lincoln blockaded Southern ports; Germany blockaded English ports with submarines in both World Wars. They all had every right to do this; it's part of the legal, legitimate conduct of war. So has Israel.
Now, there are certain rules involved in a blockade. The blockading power is required to publish a list of "contraband" goods that aren't allowed through; obviously weapons, but often dual-use items that can be made into weapons such as fertilizer and construction materials. Under some circumstances, even food can be legally blockaded, though Israel has not done this.
To be allowed through a blockade, a neutral vessel must submit to inspection either on the high seas or in a port friendly to the blockading power; Israel not only offered this, but went one further in permitting inspection by neutral UN forces.
Had the true purpose of the "peace activist" flotillas been to provide humanitarian aid to Gaza, there is no reason why they could not have submitted to these traditional inspections. The activists claimed to be transporting food and medical supplies; Israel had already announced that food and medical supplies would be permitted through.
Why didn't the activists go the safe, legal route to accomplishing their stated goal? Because their supposed humanitarian objective as trumpeted by the world's media was a lie. The Washington Times reports:
...Missing from mainstream media coverage was that supplies from the flotilla could have been transported from an Israeli port by truck, after inspection, but that offer was flatly rejected. The reasoning was transparent, considering that flotilla spokeswoman Greta Berlin announced last week to Agence France-Press, "This mission is not about delivering humanitarian supplies, it's about breaking Israel's siege." [emphasis added]
Do these people have the right to try to run the blockade? Actually, yes they do; Confederate blockade runners and American convoys ran the blockades established by Lincoln and Hitler respectively. Sometimes they made it; sometimes not.
But by attempting to run a publicly-declared naval blockade, the activists put themselves into an entirely different category. No longer unarmed neutrals, they declared themselves to be combatants.
Lincoln's ironclads had the right to try to sink Confederate blockade-runners; the U-boats had the right to torpedo British supply vessels. In precisely the same fashion, under the laws of war, Israel had the right to stop the blockade runners by whatever means they felt best.
Why is anyone surprised when Israel sends its military to deal with declared combatants? What nation wouldn't?
The problem for Israel is not that they enforced their blockade; that's kind of the point of a blockade. No, Israel's problem is far worse: they don't take themselves seriously enough.
Under the rules of war, if you capture a blockade-runner, you are entitled to possess the vessel and impound its cargo. What did Israel do? It let the vessel go, and tried to deliver the cargo anyway, to their sworn enemy!
What sort of a blockade is it where the blockading power helps blockade runners complete their deliveries? And what sort of a starving, desperately-under-siege place is Gaza where Hamas refused to accept the delivery of aid?
Israel has attempted to deliver humanitarian aid from an international flotilla to Gaza, but Hamas -- which controls the territory -- has refused to accept the cargo, the Israel Defense Forces said Wednesday.
Palestinian sources confirmed that trucks that arrived from Israel at the Rafah terminal at the Israel-Gaza border were barred from delivering the aid. [emphasis added]
The reality is, Gaza is not in a humanitarian crisis other than that created by the murderous terrorists of Hamas. Photographs of Gazan markets published by Arab sources show there to be plenty of food, clothes, candy, shoes, basically all the necessities of life ready and available; no starvation here! Regarding the medical "crisis", suffice to say that Gaza has a lower infant-mortality rate than Turkey, the nation that sent the activists' ships.
What about the nine "peace activists" brutally murdered by the Israeli special forces when they took over their ship?
Wrong question. As we've already seen, Israel had every legal right simply to torpedo the boat and send them all to Davy Jones' locker. Instead, the IDF went "above and beyond" in trying to safely capture it. Apparently, the "special forces" didn't even carry assault weapons with them, just paintguns and small sidearms; they'd made the mistake of reading the world's newspapers and expected to find a bunch of hippies sitting in a circle singing "Kum-Ba-Ya."
Oops! Here's what those pot-smoking, peace-sign-making love-in-ers had to say about their plans:
...Turkish newspapers reported that three of the four Turks killed in the onslaught had declared their readiness to become martyrs.
"I am going to be a martyr. I dreamed about it," Ali Haider Banjinin, 39, from Kurdistan, told his family before leaving to join the flotilla, according to one report.
The brother-in-law of retired engineer Ibrahim Bilgen, 61, told another paper that "martyrdom suited him very much. Allah gave him a death he desired."
A third Turkish casualty, Ali Akbar Yertilmis, a father of four from Ankara, had "dreamt of becoming a martyr", a friend was quoted as saying. [emphasis added]
Going basically unarmed into this bunch of hoodlums, the resulting fiasco was foreordained. Video proof demonstrates:
Activists are seen attacking the soldiers with a stun grenade, a box of plates, and water hoses as the soldiers attempt to board the ship. the activists are also waving around metal rods and chains later used to attack the soldiers with. The IDF soldiers were armed with paint ball guns (used for riot dispersal) and pistols which they were ordered to use only as a last resort.
Far from committing a war crime, Israel did the world a favor by sending barbarians to meet their false prophet Muhammad in hell - the more so since, not being in uniform and hiding among true noncombatants, they were the very definition of illegal-combatant war criminals.
Having bent over backwards to be even more humane and generous than international law requires, for what possible reason is Israel acting all ashamed and guilty? Somehow, the nation of Israel has fallen into the trap of believing all the bad press about themselves that the world's media liars and anti-Semites have been spewing. How quickly they have forgotten!
Did the Jews of 1935 believe Hitler's tirades about the evils of world Jewry? Did the Jews in the concentration camp internalize the evil accusations of the blood-libel forgery Protocols of the Elders of Zion? Of course not! Why does modern Israel make this silly, and possibly fatal, mistake?
When you are a tiny, friendless little country surrounded by millions of barbarian liars screaming for your blood, there is only a limited number of mistakes you can make before they'll get their wish and you'll meet your Maker. Israel needs an immediate return to the "take-no-prisoners" confidence its own founders had, making no apologies or excuses for fighting the war declared by their enemy, and taking every opportunity to clearly identify just who the criminal barbarians are and exactly why the entire civilized world - not just Israel - needs to see them dead.
And as for the next shipload of "peace activists" who defy Israel's legal blockade? Torpedo 'em.