Tuesday, June 29, 2010

The Flotilla - Will it or won't it?

Not only does it seem that the ships Iran was planning to send to Gaza are not likely to set sail because "of Egypt's refusal to let them come via the Suez canal", now there is talk of problems concerning those planning to sail from Lebanon. What seems to be more important to the organisers is the media hype rather than actual sailings themselves.

The Saudi newspaper “Al-Shaq Al-Awsat” is reporting today that, according to the Lebanese Minister of Transport, the women’s’ ship “Miriam” is fictitious, and the Lebanese flotilla consists of just one vessel – the French-registered “Julia”, which has taken the name “Naji El’adi”.

A source close to the flotilla, who refused to be identified, told the newspaper that the flotilla’s organizers are encountering difficulties. He added that the vessel “Naji El’adi”, which will fly the Bolivian flag, will carry just 1000 tonnes of equipment, and 16 people on board, 7 of them crew members. This comes in spite of reports that there will be 50 journalists, as well as dozens more human rights activists and European members of parliament, on board.

He also noted that another option exists: that the flotilla’s organizers will rent another boat. In any case, however, there is no expectation that the flotilla will depart from Lebanon to Cyprus in the next 2-3 days.

Throughout the day on Tuesday, maintenance work continued on the “Naji El’adi”, while soldiers from the Lebanese Army guarded the vessel and prevented people from approaching it. Workers at the port told the newspaper that cargo has not yet been loaded onto the ship.

Regarding the international perspective on the ship, the newspaper reported that a large number of foreign embassies in Beirut expressed suspicion that their citizens will participate in the flotilla, and even approached the Lebanese government about this, though this is probably not intended to achieve anything to prevent them from sailing to Gaza.

In conclusion: According to this report, it can be seen that the key operations currently being undertaken by the organizers of the Lebanese flotilla media-oriented only.

On the other hand, Samar Al-Hajj – the organizer of the women’s flotilla – was interviewed today by Al Jazeera and said that all the preparations for the departure of the ship “Miriam” have been completed, and that soon the ship will set out on its journey. It is interesting to note, however, that the very reporter from Al Jazeera that interviewed Al-Hajj expressed doubt about this.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Israel to Sign Accession Agreement with OECD

Today, Israel will formally accept the invitation to join the OECD. In spite of all the attempts to deligitmise the State of Israel, we see this as a breath of fresh air and realism.

The invitation to join the OECD attests to the organization’s recognition of Israel’s achievements, economic strength and its ability to contribute to the organization and to the global economy. Israel’s accession to the OECD will boost Israeli society and the economy and contribute to upgrading areas such as the environment, education, employment and many others.

The accession process, which began three years ago, was led by the Ministry of Foreign Affairs and the Ministry of Finance, with active assistance from many other government ministries, governmental authorities, the Knesset, the Bank of Israel, the public sector, economic and social organizations, the Manufacturers’ Association, the Histadruth, universities and NGOs.

Is it too much to hope that instead of the perpetuation of lies, distortions and innuendos, we may actually see some truths and realism?

Sunday, June 27, 2010

Why There Has to Be A Blockade of Gaza

From the Sderot Media Center http://sderotmedia.org.il/ comes a report of a family formerly living in Gaza whose son was injured in a Kassam attack. They firmly believe the blockade of Gaza must remain.

Just when will the world wake up to the realities of life under the shadow of Hamas and how they are being conned left, right and center.

Iris Twito, the mother of two sons injured by Qassam rockets in the city of Sderot, decided to grant an exclusive interview with Sderot Media Center, following the Gaza aid flotilla fiasco. "The entire world hates us," says Iris, "but they don’t know what we’ve been through."

The Twito family is a living testament for why there is a naval blockade on Gaza. "It’s not just Sderot that is under threat today, but the whole country," said Iris. "It is vital that we stop these flotilla boats because we cannot allow Hamas to terrorize our Israeli children."

Sitting on her patio in Ashdod, with a cigarette in hand, Iris recalls the most horrifying experience a mother can go through. Three years ago, Iris’s sons Osher and Rami, then eight and 19 respectively, were walking to an ATM machine in Sderot, when the rocket alarm went off. As the two brothers frantically attempted to locate a shelter in the middle of one of Sderot's main streets, the Qassam rocket struck meters away from the two.

The exploded shrapnel sliced through the boys’ legs. Residents poured out to the street to help but another rocket alert went off, forcing everyone to flee to shelter again. Moments later, the ambulances arrived to transport the boys to the closest hospital, Ashkelon's Barzilai hospital located 20 minutes away from Sderot.

Amidst the flashing cameras at what was one of Sderot’s goriest scenes resulting from a rocket attack, Iris collapsed from the shock of seeing of her two sons lying next to each other, surrounded by a pool of their own blood. The entire city of 19,000 were subsequently shocked by the developments to follow.

The rocket attack left Osher in a coma for two weeks. The young boy had to go through intensive surgeries; his left leg had to be amputated, and doctors had to operate on a hole in his chest and his injured lungs. The older brother Rami's legs were also badly damaged and operated on.

After a year in the hospital, Osher was released in a bright red wheelchair. His right leg was still badly damaged, but a new artifical limb was fitted on his left.

"Osher goes to intensive therapy every week to this day to help adjust to walking again," said Iris. Osher, with big brown eyes and a freckled face, walks over to sit by his mother, slowly limping and murmurs hello.

Iris and her husband decided that it would be best to move the family from the heart of Hamas’s target city, Sderot, to Ashdod, Israel’s fifth largest city, that at the time located 40 kilometers (24 miles) away from the Gaza Strip was not under missile threat.

"But the rockets can reach Ashdod now too," Iris remarks fretfully. During Operation Cast Lead, Grad missiles, which are smuggled into Gaza from Iran, struck Ashdod playgrounds, kindergartens and homes, killing one Israeli woman at a bus stop and seriously injuring many more.

"Ashdod is not sheltered like Sderot" Rami explains. "Even our home doesn't have a bomb-shelter yet."

Rami, now 21 and married with two young daughters, a toddler and a baby, expressed how the last week and a half had been hard on the family. "When we heard that the flotilla from Turkey was heading to the Gaza port, we were very scared because we had no idea what kind of weapons could be on the ships."

As Iris’s youngest son, Osher, shyly cuddles up to his mother, Iris Twito reemphasizes the need for the Gaza naval blockade in order to protect innocent Israeli civilians like her family from future missile warfare.

"The government of Israel needs to ensure security for all Israelis and make sure that other Israelis are protected from the kind of tragedy that struck our family," said Iris. "Even Barack Obama at one time agreed with us. Osher met Obama two years ago," explained Iris, as Obama following the flotilla events said the territory's situation is "unsustainable." According to Iris, the US President after hearing the young boy’s harrowing story privately told him "I would do everything to defend my daughters from rocket attacks, if they were in your position."

As the Gaza flotilla was clearly only a provocation, carrying merely 10 thousand tons of aid, when Israel gave over 738,000 tons of aid in 2009 alone. This violent political stunt was only aimed at weakening Israel’s security and strengthening the Hamas military to put more families like the Twitos under threat.

Three years ago, Iris’s maternal instincts made her remove her kids from the daily horror of the Sderot rocket reality to what was a safer city. Today, under a larger missile threat, Iris’s maternal instincts are standing up against immense international pressure to lift the Gaza naval blockade implemented to protect Israeli children from going through what her two boys were forced to endure.

Tuesday, June 22, 2010

Genes in kidney failure risk unlocked

Once again the Rambam Medical Center is at the forefront of discoveries that can solve chronic problems.

Chronic kidney disease affects millions in North America, with persons of African heritage being at a four-fold higher risk, and those of Hispanic heritage having a two-fold higher risk compared to the rest of the population.

Researchers in the USA working with the Rambam team recently announced that they've discovered a gene likely involved in the increased risk of kidney failure with those of African heritage.

Tremendous excitement has been growing in the scientific community worldwide, with an intense race to determine the genetic link responsible for the greatly increased risk many people of African heritage face for end-stage kidney disease and the need for dialysis or transplantation.

While much of the world has focused on the MYH9 gene, a team from the
Rambam Medical Center and Technion in Haifa, Israel led by Toronto's own Dr. Karl Skorecki, has discovered that variations in a neighbouring gene, called APOL1, is much more likely to be involved.

Identifying the correct gene that puts people at risk for progressive kidney disease is necessary to understand the underlying reason for the increased risk, and to be able to find strategies to prevent or slow down kidney failure.

Saturday, June 19, 2010

Palestinian Stock Exchange in Talks in Tel Aviv

Whilst there is so much talk about boycotts of Israeli products in general and products from the “settlements” in particular, the CEO of the Palestine Securities Exchange (PSE) met with the Tel Aviv Stock Exchange CEO to consider ways of cooperating recently.

This according to Globes, Israel business news - www.globes-online.com - on June 17, 2010

The last time representatives of the two stock exchanges met was in 1995, when the late Yitzhak Rabin was prime minister.

Based in Nablus, the PSE has 39 companies listed. The market is open five days a week from 10 am to 1 pm. Seven of the companies are banks, five are insurance, eight are investment firms, ten are manufacturers, and nine are service companies. The PSE only trades in stocks; there are no options or other financial instruments, because there is no demand for them.

Two months ago, the PSE CEO was a guest at the Herzog Fox Neeman law firm's Arab Business Conference, where he talked about the Palestinian capital market and options for raising money on it. Most of the participants at the conference were Israeli-Arab businessmen and Israelis who invest in the Arab sector.

It appears that as yet there is not even one Arab-owned company among the 771 companies with securities (either stocks and/or bonds) traded on the TASE in April.

Nevertheless, it seems business is business - it is good to see.

Monday, June 14, 2010

Odd Priorities at Work in International Aid ?

Some more food for thought on the subject of International aid to the Palestinians, a people who have had more aid per head than anyone else in the world. This, with thanks for the research to Tom Carew

An astounding Haiti-Gaza comparison does not get much media or political or NGO notice. This story is even much worse than it seems - when you look at both the populations and deaths involved.

Financial Aid

CIA population estimate is (2009) 1,551,859 people in Gaza, but 5,035,536 in Haiti. This means that PER HEAD, Gaza gets $579.95 but Haiti only $77.47.Gaza was thus pledged 7.5 TIMES as much per head after the IDF operation as Haiti after the devastating earthquake.

Death Toll

If you also look at the death toll, Haiti lost an estimated 230,000 on Jan 12, 2010, which equals US aid of $3,043.48 for every fatality. The highest allegation of the Gaza death toll is 1,417 which would equal US aid of $ 635,144.7 per fatality.

For US aid, every Gaza death is worth 209 TIMES as much as one in Haiti. Gaza lost at most under 0.0913 % of its population, but Haiti lost 4.568 %, or 50 times more. Gaza lost 1 in every 1,095, but Haiti lost 1 in every 22 people.

But then Haiti is neither Arab nor Muslim. And no oil-rich tyrants or suicide-bombers need to be appeased.

Life Expectancy

Palestinian Life Expectancy at 73.3 years is same as EU member Hungary, while their Adult Literacy at 93.8% exceeds Philippines at 93.4%.

Palestinian Incoming Remitances are $149 per head, compared with $150 in Israel, $101 for Egypt, $125 for Arab states overall, and $135 for Ireland.

Yes, there are some odd priorities at work in international aid ?

Sunday, June 13, 2010

Hey, There's Lots of Good News!!

With so much antagonism being directed towards the State of Israel, it is good to note that no-one is feeling downcast. Life goes on so it can be reported that:

- The numbers involved in the recent gas finds are astonishing. Tamar and Dalit are thought to be worth $50 billion, and Leviathan's potential is thought to total $100 billion. The companies' costs in finding and extracting the gas are small change compared with their potential gains, like $10 billion at the outside, -and you can do the sums for yourselves. Or perhaps that

- BIG Shopping Centers is buying a portfolio of 15 strip malls in the United States, at a price of between $400 million to $450 million. Or we might mention that

- Teva Pharmaceuticals reports that sales of their proprietary drug Copaxone reached $2.8bn last year. We could remind you that

- Israel Aerospace Industries Ltd. (IAI) subsidiary Elta has won two contracts, worth $33 million altogether, to supply airborne maritime surveillance radar systems used by naval reconnaissance aircraft. Or we could tell you that

- This week The Azrieli Group’s public offering raised NIS 2.01 billion. Or even that

- The growth forecast for Israel has been raised to 4% for 2010 from 3.7% and to 3.8% for 2011 from 3.2% according to Morgan Stanley’s analyst Tavfik Aksoy. The new growth forecasts are higher than the 2010 forecast of 3.6% by the Ministry of Finance and the 3.7% by the Bank of Israel. Or, how about that

- The 100,000-square meter Mall of Russia, Russia’s largest, worth $1bn and owned by Africa Israel, is due to open in the fourth quarter of 2010. It will have 450 stores, and that’s not all

- Africa-Israel also reported that the Ozerkovskaya Embankment residential, office and hotel project in Moscow is on schedule. The Aquamarine Hotel was dedicated in November 2009, and apartment sales have reached 70% of the project's total number of 124 apartments. Not done yet

- Demand in the institutional tender of the bond offering by Elbit Systems Ltd. this week reached NIS 2.4 billion. The company is offering up to NIS 1.1 billion ($285 million) in Series A bonds, which will mature in 2011-2020

But the good news that we would really like you to know is that despite what you might have seen and read in the media nobody here is sitting around with their head in their hands. Quite the reverse. And there is lots more.

With thanks to Good News published from time ot time at

Thursday, June 10, 2010

Drumming Heart Strings" - Part 2

In the midst of all the political problems we face, life has to go on for the disabled in Israel. I wrote three weeks ago about a village, Aleh Hanegev, that cares for the disabled of all ages 24/7. See blog http://haifadiarist.blogspot.com/2010/05/drumming-on-heart-strings.html

I received a comment from one reader complaining that “Aleh encourages parents to institutionalize their severely disabled children thereby denying them the warmth and love of family living that is every child's entitlement. It siphons off precious government and charitable funding that could be channeled instead toward assisting these children while they live with their parents and siblings.

While the rest of the enlightened world has been progressing away from institutionalization (actually shutting them down) because of its proven detriment to children condemned to live there, Israel has actually been promoting and expanding this obsolete option.

Parents of disabled children, like myself, must fight an uphill battle to win even paltry government assistance because of Aleh's detrimental influence.”

This made me think, was there any justification for this point of view? Then I received the following letter from the parent of one of the disabled living at Aleh Hanegev

"I would like to share with you my personal experience with Aleh Negev, a rehabilitative village for severely disabled young adults in Israel’s southern region.

I raised my son, who suffers from a degenerative form of epilepsy, in the US until the age of 16.5, battling to find stimulating day programs and appropriate therapies. In doing so I gave up a career and moved to 3 different countries, until I found Aleh Negev in Israel.

I never thought the day would come that I would have to make the tough decision to place my son in a home. I truly and maybe naively believed that I would be able to care for all his needs as long as I live.

But fate had a different plan for me. My son was deteriorating, and he lost the ability to speak, walk or care for himself.

He needed to be fed, changed and cared for 24 hours a day, while undergoing debilitating seizures at any time.

I found myself dependent on unreliable caregivers whom I could not trust with my son, and I realized that this solution, although very convenient for me at times, was not the best care possible for my son.

I came to Aleh Negev as a tourist, and I saw a place where dedicated, hardworking people take care of the most severely handicapped children in a loving and supporting professional environment. These people are indeed blessed to be a part of this wonderful project.

My dilemma was extremely difficult, but I decided to bring my son to Aleh Negev and move to Israel with my family to be near him.

Aleh Negev provides these unfortunate children with state of the art, outstanding care that I have not seen anywhere else.

As a responsible parent, I think I made the best choice for my son, and for the rest of our family.

Aleh Negev gives me the peace of mind of knowing that my son is receiving the best care possible: that he is in a stimulating and caring environment, in a place where all his needs are taken care of, in a comfortable setting and a loving surrounding.

There is no specific solution to this parental conflict, each case must be treated as an individual case.

Wednesday, June 9, 2010

Turkish Government Collude with IHH

Once again "Pallywood" productions have produced a blockbuster. however as with bhollywood and Bollywood, it is all based on fiction, not fact.

As the truth begins to be accumulated, we see a very different picture from the original story line that was put out by the "Free Gaza activists" (surely terrorists?)

A full analysis of the facts that have now come to light show that:-

1. An initial analysis of statements taken from passengers aboard the Turkish ship Mavi Marmara after it was towed to the port of Ashdod show that operatives belonging to the radical Islamic Turkish IHH led the violent confrontation with the IDF.

2. The statements confirmed that the violence met by the IDF soldiers was not spontaneous but rather an organized, premeditated action carried out by a hard core of 40 IHH operatives (among the 500 passengers). The operatives, who acted according to a clearly-defined internal hierarchy, boarded the ship in the port of Istanbul without undergoing a security inspection (as opposed to the other passengers, who boarded in Antalya after a full inspection).

3. The IHH operatives’ preparations included handing out walkie-talkies as they boarded the ship, taking over the upper deck, setting up a situation room for communications, and a briefing given to the operatives two hours before the confrontation by IHH head B├╝lent Yildirim, who was on board the ship and commanded his men. IHH operatives wore ceramic vests and gas masks, and were armed with large quantities of cold weapons which they had prepared from equipment found on board (knives, axes, metal cables, metal pipes used as clubs, wrenches, etc.). They were also equipped with box cutters which had been prepared on the upper deck in advance.

4. The passengers, including the IHH operatives, stated that there were close relations between the organization and Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan and that the Turkish government was involved in preparations for the flotilla. The statements reinforce the original assassment that the objective of the flotilla was not merely to bring humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip, but focused on provocation and a violent confrontation with Israel.

For a full analysis read :-

Friday, June 4, 2010

Problem in Gaza is more a Shortage of Work than a Shortage of Food

Reporter Steffen Jensen from Denmark and has just placed his report June 1st, after a visit to Gaza. We don't get too many independant reports of what is going on in the Gaza strip and many interviews are often monitored by Hamas. Nevertheless this makes interesting reading

Judging from the media, the situation in Gaza is desperate, everything is about to collapse, and the community is on the brink or at the level of a third world country.

Israel’s closure of the border to the Gaza Strip has continued for three years, ever since the Palestinian coalition government collapsed, and Hamas, during the subsequent civil war, sent Fatah packing. The Palestinian society's immediate downfall has been prophesied numerous times in the media. People have nothing to eat, we sometimes know. The UN must from time to time to stop food distribution, either because their stocks are running low, or because they cannot get diesel for their trucks, and therefore cannot carry food in. And so on.

Yesterday I drove into the Gaza Strip. I don't do this as often as before, when it involved a quick entry by car in the morning and a quick exit by late afternoon. Now it is such a slow procedure, that when I finally get down here, I end up staying for almost a week. The Israelis often also close the Gaza Strip to all foreign journalists, so that no one can get in or out (once in) for several days or weeks. That’s why there can be a long period between my visits.

This time, I had expected to see real suffering, because with all the fuss in recent days about bringing tons of humanitarian relief in - so much that people actually sacrificed their lives for it - there certainly had to really be a deep, desperate situation in the Gaza Strip. No food. Long lines in front of UN food stocks. Hungry children with food bowls.

But this was not the picture that greeted me.

When I drove through Gaza city yesterday morning, I was immediately surprised that there are almost as many traffic jams as there always have been. Isn’t there a shortage of fuel? Apparently not. No one is saving it. Gasoline is not even rationed.

Many shops were closed yesterday; Hamas has declared a general strike in protest against Israel's brutal and deadly attack on the Turkish flotilla with pro-Palestinian activists on board. It was thus difficult to estimate how many products were on the shelves. Therefore I went over to the Shati refugee camp, also known as Beach Camp. Here is one of Gaza's many vegetable markets that sell much more than just fruits and vegetables.

I will not say whether in better times there was a larger product range than yesterday, but there was certainly no shortage of vegetables, fruits or any other ordinary, basic foods. Tomatoes, cucumbers, corn, watermelons, potatoes - mountains of these items in the many stalls.

I must admit I was a little surprised. Because when I call down here to my Palestinian friends, they tell me about all the problems and deficiencies, so I expected that the crisis would be little more obvious.

And the first woman we interviewed in the market confirms this strange, contradictory, negative mindset:

"We have nothing," she said. We need everything! Food, drinks ... everything! "

It didn’t disturb her in the least that she stood between the mountains of vegetables, fruit, eggs, poultry and fish, while she spun this doomsday scenario.
Another woman, Ifka Abu Nahal, who originally comes from a rural district, is more in contact with reality. She says that the crucial problem is the overconsumption of water, which is leading to the sinking of the groundwater table. This means that the saltwater of the Mediterranean is forced in, thus polluting the groundwater, which is already too saline. This makes it unpleasant to drink, and will eventually destroy the agricultural soil.

She also says that the poor economy is the greatest problem.

“There is a great deal of unemployment. There’s no work to be got in the Gaza Strip. This means that many people do not have on income, but are instead forced to live on handouts from their relatives. So they can’t afford to buy the goods that are actually available. They can stand there and look at the meat, but are not able to buy it, “she explains.

One thing that will really surprise many people is that only the vegetables here are grown in the Gaza Strip. With the exception of watermelons, all the fruit comes from nowhere else but from . . . Israel! Yousuf al-Assad Yazgy owns a fruit and vegetable outlet here in the market. All his fruit is imported from Israel.
"Not all fruit and all vegetables come from Israel. Ours do. They come from Israel. But in the Gaza Strip there is not very much fruit cultivated - mostly tomatoes, potatoes and vegetables. So here with me are the vegetables and watermelons from Gaza. All the fruit comes across the border from Israel," he explains, but also says that there can be long periods when the border is closed, during which, therefore, fruit does not come in.

Another supply route is the smuggling tunnels down in the southern part of the Gaza Strip, under the border to Egypt. A very large part of the goods in the retail establishments here in Gaza come from Egypt and are smuggled in.

On the way out of the Shati camp we stop at a small grocery store. Not any fancy, expensive business. Just a small, humble local store. The proprietor Sun Mohammed Abu Nada says they would not be able to do business if it were not for contraband goods from Egypt.

He takes us on a brief tour of the shelves and shows everything that comes from Egypt. It turns out to be much more than half of the goods: 75-80 per cent, I would estimate. Several other products - including long-life UHT milk - come from Israel, but are also smuggled through tunnels from Egypt.

This detour via the Sinai desert and the smugglers’ tunnels naturally does not make the goods any cheaper, a fact which does not escape the notice of Muhammed Abu Nada.

The products are more expensive, he says. Many people cannot afford to buy them, or only to buy certain things sometimes. But all the while even such a small, poor-looking grocery store on the outskirts of a refugee camp still has so many relatively expensive smuggled goods on the shelves, it shows, nevertheless, that at least many of the customers must be able to afford to buy them. Otherwise, the merchant of course could not even afford to invest in unsold inventory.

I have not written this story to maintain that there are no problems in the Gaza Strip, because that would be untrue. There are problems. Many problems indeed. But it is not lack of food that primarily concerns people down here. The biggest problem is the lack of jobs and a sustainable domestic economy.

There is a shortage of construction materials, cement, and everything in the construction and public works area. However, this shortage has given rise to a whole new industry. Poor Palestinians dig through the many lots and ruins of houses and factory buildings destroyed in the war. Here they find all sorts of things that can be reused. Even many of the stones and much of the concrete can be used.

But there is a shortage of real work and actual Palestinian development, which their brothers on the West Bank are currently experiencing with help from the West, and which could do much to improve the situation in the Gaza Strip. And this economic development must come from within. There will never again be a situation where almost 150,000 workers from the Gaza Strip can travel into Israel every day, and bring money back to help the local economy (something that Israel was actually once criticized for). That was stopped by the wave of terrorism and suicide bombers in the 1990s and the beginning of the decade after 2000.

But in order to start this kind of economic development with the help of the West, Israeli cooperation is needed. And that means that the Hamas government must soften its total and inflexible rejection of negotiations with Israel, not to mention recognition of that country’s right to exist. There is a perception, even though there is still a very long way to go, that among certain circles in Hamas, there are tendencies to show greater flexibility.

In order to cultivate this tendency among the Islamists, it is probably also necessary for us in the West to soften our total rejection of the idea of having contacts with Hamas. Even though our own Danish diplomats in the region, like other EU diplomats, do not want to have contacts with Hamas, a dialog is necessary.

If no calming of the situation whatsoever starts, there is a risk that the even more militant and fanatic jihadist groups, which already are growing in the Gaza Strip, will begin to pressure Hamas from the side, and force that organization to eliminate any possibilities for political compromises, and instead protect its Islamist credentials.

Update 8:00 p.m. (Gaza time)

The Israeli army announced here this evening, that it has loaded the emergency assistance to Gaza from the six Turkish activist ships onto 20 trucks, in order to drive it into the Gaza Strip. The cargo consists, among other things, of “various types of medicine (past their expiration date), clothing, carpets, hospital equipment and toys.”

Apparently, the Israelis have not been willing to accept that building and construction materials, including cement which was also on board, be sent along.

However, the Israelis can save themselves the trouble. Hamas has announced that they will not accept any emergency assistance from the ships, and have blocked Israel’s attempt to deliver the emergency help.

Thursday, June 3, 2010

An Israelis Commando's View of the Flotilla Operation

These thoughts were received from one of the commandos who took part in the operation to stop the flotilla of boats from the FreeGaza movement. These are his thoughts.

Why on Earth we didn't demand an urgent meeting of the Security Council first I'll never know?

Turkey vowed that the shipments were inspected and pronounced safe. They vowed that there would only be Peace Activists on board the flotilla. So where did the 50 trained terrorists come from..?

Was it the Tooth Fairy who placed the crowbars, pick-axe handles, commando knives, flak jackets, gas masks, night vision goggles, catapults and axes aboard..?

Why did Israel bow to Turkish pressure and return ALL the dead bodies to Turkey, when it was clear they had in their hands three dead Al Qaidia members from Yemen and the rest were from other Arab countries.

We should have withdrawn OUR Ambassador, not wait until Turkey withdrew her's. Yet Turkey blandly announced yesterday, 'All Israel has to do is open up the Gaza Blockade and we promise a return to good relations again..!'

Yeah, Right..! Good relations..? (And pigs will fly)

The Turks have enjoyed over 600,000 Israelis holidaying in Turkey every year. Multiply six hundred thousand by, say $2,000 dollars per family unit and you'll understand why Turkey wants it's cake and eat it.

Sadly, they've recently elected a Fundamentalist Shariah Government and are edging into the Iran-al Quaida Camp and the Turkish army is getting very antsy about that.

Since Kamal Attaturk in the early 1900's, the Army has had a history of crushing Muslim Extremism in Turkey and the time is ripe for them to do that again, as the government well knows; and they too are really antsy about their health...and they get a reminder every single waking moment, cos they don't read Arab script in Turkey.

Attaturk made sure of that and converted Turkish into European script...... Anyway, from all of us in the IDF, thanks for your support. We need all the help we can get.

Tuesday, June 1, 2010

Lynching Attempt on the High Seas

I received this letter from an eye witness to the attempted lynching and hostage taking of an Israeli who was part of the operation.

O.K. So Hamas (Turkish Branch) comes up with a brilliant idea. 'We send 5 ships loaded with 'humanitarian aid' from Turkey and sail right in to Gaza, ignoring the Israeli Navy and their orders to dock in Ashdod...' Turkey recently elected a Conservative Pro-Shariah Law Government which has become more and more anti-Israel during the past year, when once we had extraordinary relations with them. Over 60% of Israeli Tourism was to Turkey (very cheap and great holidays) Now Israelis have been warned to cancell Turkish trips and get out of Turkey.

After four days of Media Frenzy, the boats arrive off Israel's coast.

They are stopped. Israeli boats and helicopters surround them. The Israelis then make their first and tactical error. They hover over the first two ships, drop commandoes onto the first one and that goes quietly, then drop onto the second boat. Now remember, they were unarmed. No rifles. Only batons and a pistol stuck in the back belt is all.

As the second wave of 9 Israelis landed on the second boat, each one was surrounded by five of six Hamas terrorists and beaten severely with iron crowbars. Three were stabbed and one was hit in the face with an iron pellet from a catapult.They were all down and being slaughtered when the second wave dropped in over them, opening fire immediately with their weapons that this time they took with them, killing 9 Hamas immediately and arresting all those on deck wearing face masks, battle gear and carrying cold steel weapons.

Nine Israelis are in hospital, three of them on the 'critical list.' All badly hurt by 'Peace Activists' bringing Humanitarian Aid to Gaza.On the deck of that boat there were 50 crowbars, 20 knives, 4 catapults and 5 automatic pistols. Someone needs to explain to me why Peace Activists need to wear flak jackets and face masks and have all those cold steel peace equipment..?

The boats were all boarded peacefully and turned around to dock in Ashdod. There everyone was disembarked. Palestinians were sent back to Gaza. Foreigners were either flown back to Turkey or boarded a vessel for Turkey, which was standing by in Ashdod Port. All the Hamas Fighters on board the 2nd boat were arrested, There were clear video shots of what happened on the 2nd boat deck, so everyone still alive who participated in the violence is now in jail.

Everyone has 20-20 Hindsight. As for me, I would have gone on board with Tasser shock guns and water canons.

The Israeli High Command fell for Hamas's propaganda. They really thought 'Peace Activists' and be careful, otherwise it will be 'Israeli Atrocities' all over the Media. When the 3rd wave dropped down and saved the solders being beaten to death with iron bars, killing nine of them, THAT is what appeared on every news station in Europe. Turkey called for an Emergency Meeting of the Security Council. The U.K.. Germany, Spain and Turkey all condemened Israel as War Criminals. Turkey has withdrawn its Ambassedor.

There's still one boat out there somewhere. It had engine trouble. It should arrive tomorrow. This time we know what to expect.

***** Bottom line, Hamas want pressure brought to bear in Israel to open the Gaza Border to free traffic for everyone, but NOT recognise Israel. They know fully well that if they can get that, they can restart the waves of suicide bombings and terror again. Well SCREW 'EM if they can't take a joke. No-one's starving in Gaza. No-one needs 'humaitarian aid.' They need employment and to be able to earn a living. Hamas makes sure that won't happen. We are now very comfortable with the fact that there's relative peace here, no 5,000 rockets coming over for 5 years on the trot, no stabbings or suicide bombings in bus stations and supermarkets every day. Peace and quiet.

It's tough on the people of Gaza. Sorry about that. I'd rather it was that way than Hamas' formula for a better future (for whom ?)