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"My heart is in the east, and I in the uttermost west." — Yehudah Ha-Levi

Israel Justified in Stopping the Flotilla under International Law

Posted by Oyster on June 2, 2010

According to a respected human rights organization known as the International Committee of the Red Cross, it seems that Israel was in the right in boarding civilian vessels that were intent on breaking their blockade. Some dude name Sirotnikov at YouTube tipped me off to this citation: San Remo Manual on International Law Applicable to Armed Conflicts at Sea, sections 67 and 146. Israel had put a blockade on Gaza following armed conflict with the illegitimate  Hamas (they overthrew the democratically-elected Palestinian leadership in 2007) regime. Israel has made it clear that they have put down a blockade off the coast of Gaza, and Egypt did similarly with its border with Gaza to the south. Both countries would only allow humanitarian supplies to go past the border, while cooperating to make sure that arms did not pass.

The organization behind the Flotilla had in mind to explicitly break the blockade. Considering that there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza, and that Israel’s offer to allow the organizers of the Flotilla disembark in the Israeli port of Ashdod and monitor the delivery of their alleged humanitarian shipment to Gaza was rejected, it is clear that the organizers were willingly trying to break through the blockade. Such an action is illegal according to the San Remo Manual on International Law Applicable to Armed Conflicts at Sea, and makes it such that Israel was in the right in boarding their vessels.


When I watch the following footage, I find it hard to call those on-board as “peace activists”. Such labels are self-promoting puffery. Their actions speak louder than 1,000 press releases. The mob-scene on the deck of the Mavi Marmara is a far cry from the peaceful civil disobedience promoted by the likes of Thoreau, Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., or Gandhi.

No one wanted the violence that ensued after the mob on the Mavi Marmara attacked the boarding Israelis. But the Flotilla organizers purposefully set out to start this provocation; there’s no way that they can claim that this was not their intent. They willingly ignored Israel’s directions to not violate the blockade, and Israel’s offer of safe harbor in Ashdod. The guilt of the deaths lay squarely in their hands.

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7 Responses to “Israel Justified in Stopping the Flotilla under International Law”

  1. norris hall said

    Well, Israel certainly shot itself in the foot this time.
    The flotilla was a publicity stunt designed to force Israel to play it’s hand.
    Instead of disabling the ships, the Israelis decided on a Rambo style assault on a ship filled with wheel chairs.
    The result was 9 civilians dead, and entire world pointing accusing fingers at Israel, and damaged relations with one of Israels few Muslim supporters…Turkey.
    These rag tag civilians set a trap for Israel
    And Israel walked right into their trap.

    Whoever ordered the attack should be fired for stupidity.

  2. Oyster said

    It’s standard operating procedure to board a ship in order to direct it away from a blockade, especially when it is not complying with communicated orders. I’m not sure how else a navy would have done so. Please feel free to explain how you would have done it if you were the officious admiral. :-)

  3. Rick said

    Israel’s enemies will soon realize that God gave the land to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. In their satantic hatred and anger toward Israel, they will be destroyed, the Israel and the world will know Who and what God is.

  4. Rick said

    Israel’s enemies will soon realize that God gave the land to the descendants of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob. In their satantic hatred and anger toward Israel, they will be destroyed, then Israel and the world will know Who and what God is.

  5. Dusty said

    Sorry for the shameless self promotion, but here in the Bay area, there is something you can do.

    Join StandWithUs/San Francisco Voice for Israel and other Bay Area supporters of Israel to show your support for Israel, the only democracy in the middle east

    Join us on Saturday June 5 at 11 AM-1 PM, in front of City Hall, Polk Street between McAllister and Grove, San Francisco (this is a counterprotest to International ANSWER anti-Israel rally)

    As the truth comes out about this so-called “humanitarian peace mission”, we’re angry. We’re angry that the media is ignoring the ties between these “activists” and the IHH, a Turkish group with ties to Hamas and al-Qaeda. We’re angry that Israel’s right to defend its citizens is once again questioned. We’re angry that people who claim to support values such as women’s rights, LGBT rights and civil rights support a misogynist, homophobic regime that tortures and executes its political opponents.

    But we’re going to take that anger and do something positive with it– we’ll use that energy to be on the streets of San Francisco to show the public and the media that Israel’s supporters will not be quiet at this critical time.

    And on Saturday, we will take that anger and stand proudly for Israel against those who share the same concept of “peace” as the ones on the boat who attacked the IDF soldiers. We’ll stand against those who will be chanting “intifada, intifada” and claim that blowing up buses and rocketing schools is “legitimate resistance”.

    We will have some flags and signs, please feel free to bring your own as well. There are signs that you can download and print yourself at http://www.facebook.com/l/a9110;www.standwithus.com/SIGNS/?type=focus&wc=46.

    If you choose to bring your own signs, please no signs or graphics offensive to any racial or ethnic group including but not limited to Arabs, Islam, or Palestinians in general. Signs in violation of our policies do not help the pro-Israel cause and will not be allowed.

    Please be aware of the possibility that some of the so-called “peace activists” here in the Bay Area may not be any more peaceful than their counterparts on the Turkish boat; use common sense and avoid engaging with those on the other side as you arrive or leave the area.

    We understand that those who are Shabbat-observant are unable to join us on Saturday, but it is important that we are there to counter the anti-Semitic International ANSWER.
    Finally, don’t forget to be at Yerba Buena Gardens in San Francisco on Sunday from 11-5 for Israel in the Gardens. We know that the same anti-Israel hate groups will be there to protest. Their plans may be altered by changes in the San Francisco Police Department’s plans for security at the venue; we will keep you updated on our plans as the situation develops.

    Stand for Israel!
    Stand against Terror!
    Stand With Us!

  6. ima2seven said

    The big shock isn’t the world’s ridiculous ridicule of Israel on this. Or that no one bothered to get the facts first before going crazy about it. It is that there are many Jews in the world who still expect the world to treat Israel and all of her actions any differently. We are supposed to set a tone, not live for the approval of others.

  7. thanks you admin

    nice great post

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