Eyewitness account to Israel’s murder on the Gaza flotilla

Hi Palestine supporters,

Can you help?

We are very privileged to have two participants in the recent Free Gaza flotilla coming to speak at a special Justice for Palestine public forum on September 22nd.

The Australian media at the time unapologetically aired the doctored video footage released by the Israeli military. This is our chance to hear what really happened when the aid flotilla was attacked by Israeli forces.

Can you help to make this event as successful as possible?

Printed posters and leaflets will be available for collection at the Justice for Palestine meeting this Wednesday (6:30pm Sept 8th at the TLC building, 16 Peel st, South Brisbane). The flier is attached if you want to print some yourself. If you can help in any other way please email me or call me on 0410621884.

Thanks lots for that, your help is greatly appreciated.

Justice for Palestine Brisbane presents a fundraiser for Gaza

Eyewitness to Israels murder on the Gaza flotilla

Ahmed Talib was on the Mavi Marmara flotilla in June which attempted to break Israel’s siege on Gaza and deliver much needed aid to the province. Israeli commandos swept onto the boast , Killed 9 activists and shot Ahmed. He and Fellow flotilla participant Jerry Campbell will be talking about their experiences on the flotilla and how you can support the Palestinian cause. Donations will be taken and money raised will go toward the next flotilla.

Ahmed and Jerry will speak at:

12 noon Wednesday September 22nd

Room 342, Building 67, UQ St Lucia Campus


6:30pm Wednesday September 22nd

TLC building, 16 Peel st, South Brisbane



14 thoughts on “Eyewitness account to Israel’s murder on the Gaza flotilla

  1. loewdabull says:

    Dr. Abd Al-Fatah Nu’man: “The word ‘fleet’ and all the talk about its commander, Bülent Yildirim, reminded me of the days when the Mediterranean Sea was full of Islamic fleets. Today, once again, we smell the scent of the fleet. True, the current fleet does not bear weapons or carry armies, but it carries the same scent – believing men, armed with faith.

    “Yesterday, I was following the news agencies, and they reported the threats of the Zionists to detain the convoy and to prevent it from reaching Gaza. On the other side, there are people armed with faith and resolve, who chant – even while hearing the threats: ‘Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jews, the army of Muhammad will return.’ A woman stood on the deck, and said: “We await one of two good things – to achieve martyrdom or to reach the shore of Gaza.”

    “This scent is a message to the Islamic nation worldwide: Islam is coming, and Gaza is the spearhead that sets the nation in motion.


    “What they fear today is the awakening of the Islamic nation. The issue is not the entrance of a convoy or the arrival of aid. The fear of the convoy and of Gaza is, in fact, the fear of the Zionists and of the [Arab] rulers. These rulers, who weigh heavily on the Arab and Islamic nation, are no less terrified than the Zionists of those actions that awaken the shackled, persecuted, and oppressed nation.

    “My message is to those heroes who are, as we speak, at mid-sea, in pitch darkness under the skies, their palms raised to Allah in supplication. What are they asking for? The Prophet Muhammad said: “He whose feet have been covered with dust for the sake of Allah is saved from the Hellfire, and he who has fought even for only the time it takes to milk a she-camel secures a place in Paradise.” These heroes were selected by Allah to carry out this mission – the mission of awakening the nation, and this will bring honor upon them.

    “Yesterday, the commander of the fleet said: ‘We will not allow the Zionists to come near us, and we will wage resistance against them.’ With what will they wage resistance? With their fingernails. These are people who wish to be martyred for the sake of Allah. As much as they want to reach Gaza, the other option is more desirable to them.

    “We pray to Allah that they be awarded both good things: That they reach the shore of Gaza safe and sound, and that they be granted martyrdom, along with us, on the walls of the Al-Aqsa Mosque – as conquerors.”

    Al-Jazeera TV Report from “Freedom Flotilla” Before Its Departure for Gaza: Activists On Board Chant Intifada Songs and Praise Martyrdom – May 28, 2010

    Reporter: “Despite the Israeli threats and some unexpected obstacles, the arrival of the ships at the rendezvous, in preparation to set sail to Gaza, has kindled the emotions and enthusiasm of the participants.”

    Crowd chanting: “Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jews, the army of Muhammad will return.”

    Reporter: “Through songs about the Palestinian Intifada, the participants expressed their longing to reach Gaza.”

    Participant 1: “The brothers here are shouting and are full of enthusiasm. They are waiting to leave soon, with the ships around us in the sea. Allah willing, we will make our way to Gaza.”

    Participant 2: “We are now waiting for one of two good things – either to achieve martyrdom, or to reach Gaza.”

    Egyptian Expert on International Law Ahmad Hassan Omar: Turkey and Other Countries Should Use Aid Convoys to Transfer Weapons to Gaza and Returning Refugees to Acre – Al-Jazeera, May 18, 2010

    Interviewer: “A spokesman for the Israeli Foreign Ministry said that the [‘Freedom Fleet’] campaign was a provocation and a violation of Israeli law. How are we to understand this, from a legal perspective?”

    Dr. Hassan Ahmad Omar: “Resolution 3103 of the UN General Assembly, issued in 1973, affirmed the basic rights of combatants against foreign, racist, occupying forces. According to this resolution, all the counties in the world have the right – and even the obligation – to aid the Gaza Strip and the West Bank, in the form of food supplies and weapons. Moreover, the time has come to implement Resolution 194, regarding the return of the Palestinian refugees.

    “These convoys could carry food supplies and weapons, as well as Palestinian refugees, who want to return to their homeland.


    “Israel, which imposes a siege on the Gaza Strip, cannot talk about legal channels for providing aid. In my view, Turkey…”

    Interviewer: “But such channels exist, don’t they?”

    Dr. Hassan Ahmad Omar: “The siege that Israel is imposing… It is necessary to provide Gaza not only with food, water, and building supplies, but also with weapons. Weapons must be provided, because these are weapons of revolutionaries, and aid must be provided to the Gaza Strip.

    “It is necessary [to help] the refugees return to the Gaza Strip, as well as to the Acre region, because according to the partition plan, it belongs to the Arab state of Palestine.


    “The various countries have an obligation to provide these weapons and food to Gaza, and [to enable] the return of the refugees.

    “Turkey could revive the commission consisting of Turkey, France, and the US, which was mentioned in Resolution 194 regarding the return of the refugees, thus facilitating the return of the refugees to Acre – at least the half million refugees from Lebanon – in accordance with article 6 of Security Council Resolution 1559.

    “These aid campaigns should not be restricted to food and water. The [ships] could also include returning refugees and weapons for the Palestinian revolutionaries.


    “I would like to recommend that the brothers in Turkey use the hovercraft as a means of transportation.”

    Interviewer: “But all these proposals require official international support for these ships. Does this campaign enjoy such support?”

    Dr. Hassan Ahmad Omar: “UN Resolution 3103 obliges these countries to provide aid to the Gaza Strip. The hovercraft can carry all the cars and all the aid. Since the Gaza port is not ready, the amphibian hovercraft can reach the very sands of Gaza.

    “In all future aid campaigns for Gaza we can use the hovercraft. I have approached the International Islamic Bank, and proposed that they buy hovercraft, and give them to countries that want to provide aid to Gaza.”

    Al-Arabiya TV Reports on a New Shopping Mall in Gaza

    Following is an excerpt from a report on a new shopping mall that opened recently in Gaza. The report aired on Al-Arabiya TV on August 27, 2010.

    Reporter: In this shopping center, thousands of Gazans have begun to buy their food and clothing. It was named the “Gaza Mall” by its owners, a group of Palestinian businessmen, some of whom are affiliated with Hamas.

    Salesman: It is a pleasure to do all your shopping in one place. Families spend two hours or more here, enjoying themselves shopping. The number of shoppers and visitors is growing day by day.

    Shopper no. 1: We have begun to feel that there is some progress like in the Gulf states. This is a humble start, but Allah be praised, there is progress.

    Reporter: In the airconditioned two-storey building, there are dozens of shops selling shoes, clothes, perfumes, and accessories. The shelves are packed with foreign, Israeli, and Arab products. On the ground floor, there is a supermarket and a small restaurant.

    Shopper no. 2: The prices of some products are high, while others are reasonable. We manage.

    Shopper no. 3: It’s a new thing for us. You can get anything here. I don’t know how they get all these things, with the siege and all.

    Shopper no. 4: It is as if there’s no siege at all. People are buying things. They all want to make their children happy.

    Reporter: It is modest compared to shopping centers in the neighboring countries, but some people here consider it a step forward.

    This is Hannan Al-Masri, Al-Arabiya TV, from Gaza.

    ianeatstruth, on September 5, 2010 at 12:26 pm Said:
    August 18, 2010

    Egyptian Cleric Salem Abu Al-Futuh: We Will Conquer Italy and the Rest of Europe, as Well as North and South America; The West Will Convert to Islam

    Following are excerpts from an interview with Egyptian cleric Salem Abu Al-Futuh, which aired on Al-Nas TV on August 18, 2010:

    Salem Abu Al-Futuh: The nation of Islam will return – despite our current crisis and despite the arrogance of the West. The West is bound to be destroyed. Just like Allah destroyed the Byzantine and Persian empires, He will destroy the West at the hands of the Muslims. This is an unequivocal promise. These countries will convert to Islam. Islam will reach these countries.


    Let us examine the divine sequence: First, the Caliphate will return. Then, the Muslims will live in tremendous prosperity. The economy of the Muslims will be the strongest of all. You are probably thinking that I’m not well today if I say such things. By God, there’s nothing wrong with me. I am speaking words of truth.


    Great conquests will ensue. We will conquer Italy.


    By Allah, we will conquer Italy. By Allah, we will conquer Italy and move into [the rest] of Europe. Islam will enter that entire region. Even America, you ask? Yes, even America. North or south America? Both North and South America. We will enter all these countries, and people there will be joining Islam in droves

  2. loewdabull says:

    Hamas Thwarts Greener Gaza

    Responding to necessity, some Gaza residents are designing clever “eco” products, but Hamas is bringing them down

    Matt recently described the possibility of a green coexistence between Palestinians and Israelis south of Jerusalem. Israel is shipping their cleantech expertise to their neighbors, thereby fostering good relations and a more sustainable future. On the other side of the sliver that is Israel, the green situation is slightly more complicated. While it would seem that the Israeli blockade is the sole reason for Gaza’s fledgling eco-enterprise, it turns out, says Theodore May, that Hamas is responsible for pushing it down.

    Gaza’s “green” innovators

    Writing for Global Post, May introduces two courageous innovators (we’ve reported on the past) whose inventions could have improved the lives of many of Gaza’s residents.

    Maher Youssef Abou Tawahina (we reported here) runs a hardware store with his father. After waiting in line for hours to purchase cooking gas, or worse, finding it all sold out, the father and son team created their own cooking apparatus.

    They developed a solar oven that heats up within 5 minutes.

    “The oven is not quite hot enough for baking bread,” according to Mr. Abou Tawahina, “but it’s perfect for roasting chicken.”

    Such was the enthusiasm for the cooker that the pair built 30 ovens for their fellows, until the insulating glass that was used as the stove’s ceiling ran out.

    Fed up with high prices

    Further up the road in Gaza City, Waseem El Khazendar (we reported here) became fed up with the high fuel prices that made it too expensive to even drive his car. An engineer, he painstakingly developed an electric Peugeot that sent ripples throughout the community and could have been a source of inspiration.

    But the car, along with the family’s factory in the Northern end of Gaza, were both blown up when Hamas and Israel began fighting.

    “Mr. Khazendar, whose green innovation became a casualty of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict, isn’t sure he’ll build a new electric car, saying that he’s too devastated by the loss of the last one,” wrote May.

    A green Gaza looks too independent

    “The policy of Hamas is to show we are not developing,” said Fouad El-Harazin, a Palestinian-American who founded the National Research Center, an organization in Gaza that is trying to find the funding and supplies to kick start a solar energy project here.

    Mr. Harazin, among others, said that a green Gaza could mean an independent Gaza. But while Israeli border restrictions make importing solar energy equipment difficult, it is Hamas that is actively working against green energy projects here.

    “Hamas will say, ‘Why did you do that? Do you want to show we have good development? Take it down!’” Mr. Harazin said.

    Ultimately, though, a testament to people’s extraordinary resilience, life will go on whether the blockade is lifted or not. That is because all worthwhile inventions have arisen from necessity.

    “Because you need it, you do it,” Mr. Khazendar said. “If I do it, many people can do it.”

  3. loewdabull says:

    I must say, Ian, all this antiJewish garbage you publish on this website is amazing. Must be a lot cheaper than pornography to get yourself off.

    Of course, those who get themselves off on antiJewish propaganda tend to be very nasty perverts indeed. but I suppose you know all abotu that when you and your mates look at yourselves in the mirror – fater you’ve cleaned it off of course.

  4. loewdabull says:

    Whoops, that should be AFTER you’ve cleaned it off of course.

  5. Judy Singer says:

    Hi Ian

    Hope you watched Foreign Correspondent tonight. It showed the charming “peace activists” on the flotilla. A dose of reality for you.


  6. Judy Singer says:


    “Labor 4 a Just Palestine”, sounds more like “Labor Just 4 Palestine”. Anglos like yourself who care about peace in the Middle East should consider putting your energies behind supporting genuine grassroots people-to-people projects between Palestinians and Israelis who are tired of extremists. A search of the net reveals many such initiatives, starting with http://onevoicemovement.org, Watch the video. By taking sides you are adding fuel to the flames. There is no evidence that the blame game has worked anywhere, let alone in the Middle East for the last 60 years.


  7. The Labor party are extemists? says:

    Hello Judy,

    You say Palestinians and Israelis are tired of extremists.

    I listened to the video and had a brief look at the website, ‘One Voice’.

    I can’t see any difference between the political objective of ‘Labor for a Just Palestine’ and ‘OneVoice’.

    They both support a peaceful two state solution to end the conflict. Where is the difference?

    Personally I can’t see how their solution can work.

    Should you or anyone be interested, I explain my reasons at Labor for a Just Palestine: A two state solution?


  8. Justice for Palestine Meeting says:

    Hi all,

    A reminder that there will be a Justice for Palestine meeting tonight, 6:30pm at the TLC Building (2nd floor), 16 Peel St, South Brisbane.

    in solidarity,

  9. Judy Singer says:

    Differences? For a start it’s not One Voice Just 4 Palestine, it’s One Voice for a Just Palestine and a Just Israel. Whereas Labor 4A Just Palestine and Forgedabout Israel begins by denying the reality of Israel altogether. I don’t see how an Australia grganisation that begins in this way, whose members are neither Israelis nor Palestinians are doing anything other than grandstanding and pouring fuel on the flames. And having beena member of the ALP I saw how these Labor 4Whatever groups that sprout up everywhere like mushrooms can be a vehicle for the ambitions of its founders.

  10. Judy Singer says:

    So did you see the BBC Panorama on Foreign Correspondent? Poor Anna Corbin, no friend of Israel, looked glummer and glummer as she researched the story, and found a bunch of Islamofascist thugs on board, spoiling for a fight. And to cap it off, the “medicines” turned out to be all past their use-by date, and therefore useless valueless items.
    Israel was set up. They cdnt win. The Islamofascists know that they can always count on Judaeophobia masquerading as anti-“Zionism” and sure enough the entire world went apeshit on cue, immediately jumping to condemnation and the worst possible conclusion.


  11. Flotilla participants tell their story to Brisbane audience says:

    The Brisbane ‘Justice for Palestine’ group organised a forum and Q & A of two local people who were on the ‘Mavi Mamara’. Please find the video of the forum.

    Technical limitations means that this video contains only part of the Q & A session.

    This ship was taking aid from Turkey to Gaza in Palestine when it was attacked in international waters.

    Ahmed and Jerry described how people can make a difference.

    Even though they did not expect to have their lives threatened nor to witness others on the ship being killed.

    They describe the courage of the participants on the aid ship.

    They describe how shooting started first from an Israeli heliocopter on unarmed passengers.

    They deny that anyone on the Mavi Mamara provoked the murderous assault. They describe the lies published by the BBC – the humiliation of the passengers by Israeli soldiers – the premeditated murders of specific individuals. Very little coverage has been made in the Australian media. Brisbane’s Courier Mail has published one article about their story.

    Ahmed and Jerry spoke at Queensalnd Council of Unions building, South Brisbane on Wednesday September 22nd 2010.

    ‘Justice for Palestine’ in Brisbane can be contacted at:

    Phone: 0410 621 884
    Email: contact@justiceforpalestinebrisbane.org
    or on the web @ http://justiceforpalestinebrisbane.org

    Ahmad and Jerry describe the Israeli commando raid on the ship with 9 passengers murdered in cold blood…

    Many thanks to Ahmed and Jerry for their clear account of what happened on the ship.

    Congratulations to the organisers for their efforts.

    Comments on the YouTube video are welcome.


  12. loewdabulla says:

    The Bloodstained Mavi Marmara by Sefik Dinc –
    Preparations made by IHH for confrontation with the IDF and the violence exercised by that organization’s operatives as photographed and documented in a book by Şefik Dinç, a Turkish journalist who took part in the Mavi Marmara flotilla.

    (The IHH’s version that shots were fired from the helicopters at the Turkish operatives is not true. IDF soldiers on board the Mavi Marmara were forced to shoot specifically at the operatives who attacked them, when their lives were at risk. No shots were fired from the helicopter. )


    1. Several books about the flotilla incident have been recently published in Turkey. One of them was written by Şefik Dinç, a reporter for the popular Turkish newspaper Habertürk, who was on board the Mavi Marmara during the last flotilla. Şefik Dinçcaptured images of the violent confrontation between IHH operatives and their supporters on one hand and IDF soldiers on the other, concealed his photographs from the Israeli security forces, and managed to smuggle them into Turkey.

    2. Şefik Dinç’s account is fairly balanced, giving considerable weight to events that he personally witnessed and experienced. While the IHH narrative is given at length, the author does not hesitate to expose the extreme violence used by IHH operatives against the IDF and criticize the Turkish government for not stopping the flotilla. “Let’s face it: the Mavi Marmara crisis was a calculated gamble,” writes Dinç in the foreword to his book. “People on the street said that Israel would not let the siege be broken. The Turkish government, by not preventing the incident, and the IHH, by insisting on entering Gaza, led to a harsh, non-compromising reaction from Israel, destabilizing the Middle East region again”.

    3. The photographs and verbal descriptions match the plenty of information, according to which IHH operatives had made a well-designed plan to conduct a violent confrontation with the IDF. The author photographed IHH operatives beating IDF soldiers with iron bars and clubs (taken from a secret stash), kidnapping three of them, beating injured IDF soldiers after they were kidnapped, and trying to throw one of them into the sea. The journalist, who had earlier heard IHH leader Bulent Yildirim say in an interview that the resistance would be passive, witnessed and documented so-called “passive resistance” turning practically into violent behavior.

    4. The author’s description clearly shows that IDF soldiers did not open fire until after other soldiers were attacked and taken hostage. He also quoted Bulent Yildirim’s deputy Hüseyin Oruç as saying that there had been no attempts from the Turkish government to recall the ships or prevent the flotilla from sailing.

    5. Following is a selection of photographs and descriptions from the book concerning the preparations made by IHH operatives and their supporters for the confrontation, giving the reader a good idea of the extreme violence they used against IDF soldiers. In some cases, we chose to verify those descriptions against the information we have on the confrontation.
    Preparations for the confrontation
    6. In his book, Şefik Dinç mentions that the volunteers on board the Mavi Marmara held lively discussions about the possibility of Israel attacking the ship. The operatives were ready for any scenario and even expressed their readiness to die, as long as the “siege” was broken (pp. 23-24). That description matches the information we have collected, according to which seven out of the nine people killed had declared themselves one way or another willing to die as shaheeds prior to the violent confrontation (see our July 12, 2010 Information Bulletin: “According to well-documented information, seven of the nine Turks killed in the violent confrontation aboard the Mavi Marmara had previously declared their desire to become shaheeds (martyrs). Eight of them belonged to Islamist Turkish organizations and not one of them was a peace activist or human rights worker”).

    7. While waiting for the confrontation, some operatives began training for a potential Israeli attack. They practiced using fire hoses to thwart possible attempts by IDF soldiers to board the ship; they were instructed on the use of gas masks and told how to resist Israeli soldiers. They were also told that, as soon as the ship entered Israel’s territorial waters, additional guards would be deployed and passengers would be given a warning signal. Each person in charge of passenger security was given a specific location to report to when the alarm sounded (pp. 36-37).

    The text reads: Several exercises were held on board the ship to prepare in advance for a possible attack. In one exercise, the passengers were instructed on how to put on gas masks and lifebelts, and how to resist the Israeli attack. The photograph shows one of the passengers practicing with a slingshot he had brought along.1

    The text reads: By the time the soldiers started boarding the ship, the passengers had already completed their preparations. They had put on lifebelts and gas masks and began resisting the Israeli soldiers using the iron bars and wooden clubs they held in their hands.

    8. Once contact was made between the Mavi Marmara and Israeli navy boats, the ship’s passengers were woken up by IHH operatives and their supporters, who gave the passengers lifebelts and gas masks and prepared them for a confrontation with the IDF soldiers. When everyone who had been assigned a task reported to their (pre-determined) stations, clubs were taken out of a hiding place. “In addition to the wooden clubs I’d seen earlier, there were now iron bars as well”. “They were made from the railing around the ship” (p. 43).2 Şefik Dinç’s description matches a great deal of reliable information we have in our possession, and strongly contradicts Bulent Yildirim’s remark (made at a press conference called during the flotilla’s voyage) that “we don’t even have one pocket knife” (p. 39).3

    9. “According to what I saw,” says Şefik Dinç, “resistance to a possible boarding attempt by Israeli soldiers is not going to be that passive” (p. 43).4 From time to time, the leader of IHH was seen giving terse instructions. As it turned out, “there was some discrepancy between the passive resistance [mentioned by Yildirim] and the preparations for [active] resistance that were taking place at the time.”5 It was in that setting, writes Dinç, that journalists took their cameras and started documenting those moments and sending them back to their newspapers (p. 43).

    10. Speaking to TV reporters on board the Mavi Marmara several hours before the IDF assault, IHH leader Bulent Yildirim stated that “soon we will see the true face of Israel”. He further added, “we will defend ourselves here. We are aware of the price we’ll have to pay. But we did take into consideration that we may have to sacrifice ourselves for the sake of humanity. We shall not retreat, and everybody will see the Israelis pull back” (p. 44).

    Description of the fighting

    11. At approximately 04:02, when Şefik Dinç was on the upper deck, the IDF’s Zodiac boats came into view and surrounded the Mavi Marmara. Satellite communications were cut off, forcing reporters to switch to alternative satellite frequencies. Gas, stun, and smoke grenades were fired from the boats. Women and older people started making their way to the interior of the ship. “At that point, the people chosen to take part in the resistance effort put on their gas masks.” The Israeli offensive, utilizing the Zodiac boats, was met by defensive action from the operatives. Another group began spraying the Zodiac boats with water from a fire hose and blinding the soldiers with spotlights. Some operatives started throwing glass bottles, which missed their mark because the Mavi Marmara and the boats were on the move (pp. 45-46).

    The text reads: IHH leader Bulent Yildirim as the helicopters started their descent.
    He was photographed smiling to the camera and holding a communications device.
    12. Shortly after the Zodiac boats appeared, a Sikorsky helicopter began approaching the Mavi Marmara and descending over the captain’s command bridge. Once it was close, commandos started sliding down on ropes from the helicopter. Three soldiers who dropped near the command bridge were taken hostage by a group of operatives as soon as they came on board. The three hostage soldiers were taken to the lower deck.6 At that stage, shots were heard. Judging by the sound, Dinç assumed that plastic bullets were being used. However, he said that it wasn’t long before the soldiers began using live ammunition (pp. 46-47).7

    The text reads: The soldiers who rappelled from the helicopters were met with resistance from the passengers. The first three soldiers were caught, beaten with iron bars and wooden clubs, and taken to the space below the captain’s command bridge.
    The text reads: After the three well-armed soldiers landed on the ship, they were beaten and taken to the ship’s interior.

    13. The operatives waiting on the upper deck put the captive soldiers on the floor. Those soldiers were beaten with iron bars and clubs; they were kicked and slapped. Some operatives attempted to throw the soldiers taken to the lower deck into the sea. A soldier hanging in the air during an attempt to throw him into the sea was rescued thanks to the intervention of other people, who prevented that from happening. The soldiers who had sustained injuries to their faces and heads were taken down to the hall on the second floor. The soldiers had blood on their faces and were very scared. One of them, held by two people who had taken him inside, kept screaming for a doctor (p. 47).

    The text reads: The soldier who was beaten with iron bars and wooden clubs. His face was stained with blood, and fear showed in his eyes as he was taken to the interior of the ship.
    The text reads: The captive soldiers were surprised when they were taken inside the ship, just as they had been surprised to be caught when they came on board. Perhaps deep inside, they thought they were going to be executed. It is thanks to the intervention of several volunteers that the IDF soldiers did not take a heavier beating.

    The text reads: The weapons of the soldiers who were taken to the lower deck were thrown into the sea.8 There was also an attempt to throw one of the soldiers into the sea.

    The text reads: As doctors attempted to treat the kidnapped soldiers in the corridors, they also attempted to keep the passengers from further beating

    The text reads: Several volunteers intervened and prevented other
    angry volunteers from throwing the soldier into the sea.

    The text reads: It was difficult to get the kidnapped soldiers out of the hands of the man with the club. He ignored the requests of the volunteers who wanted to protect the soldier, and kept beating him.

    14. As the soldiers were taken hostage, shots were heard from the helicopter.9 According to Şefik Dinç, the commandos, who had until that point used plastic bullets, switched to live ammunition. Most of the people killed were on the upper deck; however, some were killed or injured on the lower decks as well. Doctors and several operatives who saw the dead claimed that two people had been shot dead in the head (p. 48).

    15. When Şefik Dinç saw the three IDF soldiers being caught and beaten by the operatives, he realized that the situation had gotten out of control and assumed that many people would be killed. In a short period of about 20 minutes, nine people were killed and over 30 were injured. He added that the number of casualties could have been greater if it wasn’t for the IHH leaders’ call to cease the resistance (p. 48).

    Did the Turkish authorities attempt to talk the IHH operatives out of launching the flotilla?

    16. Turkey demanded that Israel apologize for its actions, Israel rejected that demand and accused Turkey of supporting the flotilla. During a visit to the US, the Turkish PM’s Chief Advisor Ibrahim Kalin said that the authorities had advised the IHH operatives against sailing: “We tried to convince them, we explained to them the difficulties and the risks, and that they should weigh once again whether or not to set sail (p. 78).

    17. Turkish opposition leaders criticized the government by asking why no members of the ruling AKP party had been on board the Mavi Marmara. According to Dinç, MIT (the Turkish National Intelligence Organization) issued a warning to the government, and it is based on that warning that parliament members chose not to take part in the flotilla (p. 78).

    18. Aslı Aydıntaş, a reporter for the opposition newspaper Milliyet, published an interview with Hüseyin Oruç, Bulent Yildirim’s deputy. Yildirim’s deputy was asked to comment on the claim that, when the flotilla had come near the Israeli coast, IHH consulted with MIT and AKP, which advised IHH not to proceed. Hüseyin Oruç responded by saying that “we received no recommendation from MIT or AKP. It was a long operation… We had been announcing the flotilla on the media for two months. Other than that, there was no discussion. We can clearly state that there were no attempts to bring us back, and there was no such suggestion from MIT. The decision was made by IHH, and we did not hide it from anyone…” (pp. 73-74).


    1 Numerous slingshots of different kinds had been brought on the ship. Also found were marbles, stones, and nuts and bolts prepared in advance for the confrontation.

    2 The description of advance preparations for a violent confrontation with Israel matches the information in our possession. The preparations for fighting included the assignment of posts, preparation of weapons, setting up communications between the operatives, and establishing medical services for the operatives.
    3 One hundred iron bars of different lengths were found on board the Mavi Marmara. They were made from the ship’s iron railing. Also found were 50 improvised clubs, as well as standard-issue clubs brought on the ship and hidden inside rolled-up blankets. Yildirim’s remark that the operatives do not even have “one pocket knife” is a blatant lie.
    4 Şefik Dinç writes that, speaking at a press conference called on board the ship prior to that, Bulent Yildirim had said that “we will resist passively”.
    5 Yildirim’s public statements, aimed at Western target audiences and human rights organizations that joined forces with IHH, are characterized by toned-down terminology, with such phrases as “humanitarian purposes” and “passive resistance”. Şefik Dinç is correct in pointing out that there is a considerable discrepancy between those statements and IHH’s actual behavior, as it was witnessed by Dinç.
    6 Taking soldiers hostage in violent confrontations is not a new tactic of IHH. In January 2010, IHH operatives engaged in a violent confrontation with Egyptian security forces who refused to let them enter the Gaza Strip, during which hostages were taken by IHH operatives. Bulent Yildirim described the incident as follows: “…They [Egyptian security forces] detained seven of our members. We reacted to their attack. We took seven Egyptian soldiers captive. We released three soldiers who were injured. We kept four soldiers. We were willing to release them in exchange for the release of our people. After the first attack, the Egyptian soldiers surrounded us on sea and on land. We were under siege, [in a situation] where they could attack us again” (on5yirmi5.com, January 5, 2010; http://ihh.org.tr/12630, January 6, 2010).

    7 According to our information, IHH operatives and their supporters fired live ammunition as soon as the first soldiers descended from the helicopter. One IDF soldier suffered a knee injury from a non-IDF weapon as soon as he came on board the ship. IDF forces were forced to return fire using live ammunition since they were attacked and their lives were clearly at risk.
    8 According to our information, IHH operatives used three weapons taken from the Israelis against other IDF soldiers. It appears that two of them were thrown into the sea, as were one or two non-IDF weapons, at least one of which was used to fire on the commandos descending from the helicopter.

    9 The IHH’s version that shots were fired from the helicopters at the Turkish operatives is not true. IDF soldiers on board the Mavi Marmara were forced to shoot specifically at the operatives who attacked them, when their lives were at risk. No shots were fired from the helicopter.

  13. UN declares Israeli attack unlawful says:

    UN report on Israeli attack

    Nine people, including eight Turkish and one U.S. citizen of Turkish descent, were killed when Israeli forces raided a Gaza-bound aid flotilla in international waters on May 31. Around 30 people were wounded in the attack.

    The United Nations (UN) Human Rights Council set up the international fact-finding mission on June 2 to investigate violations of international law, including international humanitarian and human rights law, resulting from the Israeli attacks on the flotilla of ships carrying humanitarian assistance.

    Diplomatic sources said the final part of the report strongly emphasized that Israel violated human rights and international laws.

    According to the sources, the report said rights of the victims should be taken under guarantee, but the assailants could not be identified without the support of Israeli authorities.

    The report also said Israel refrained from cooperating with the Council, and the Israeli government should pay compensation to the relatives of the victims as soon as possible.

    Turkish Weekly

  14. Wonderful song by Doc Jazz about the Freedom Flotilla. Please watch, then pass on to your own contacts. The song is clear and eloquent and should be seen around the world. [Thanks Fay]


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