Free Gaza Damage

When the aid is not controlled by Israel in a media staged delivery, this is what the IDF do-

Previously. Pics from The Daily -friggin’- Mail!

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Snuff Tube

The Israel Defense Forces has opened a YouTube channel broadcasting footage taken over the last five days in its air offensive on the Gaza Strip.

“The blogosphere and the new media are basically a war zone in a battle for world opinion,” said IDF spokeswoman Major Avital Leibovich said. She added that the YouTube channel is an important part of Israel’s attempt to explain its actions abroad.

The channel was launched as part of the army’s PR campaign to draw international support for its military operation on Hamas’ infrastructure in Gaza. YouTube initially pulled the channel as soon as it was launched, but then resumed access a short while later.

I suppose we should be flattered the Israeli military propaganda bods are thinking about us but while I was born yesterday, it was 40 years ago yesterday. The corporate media may be playing nice but hundreds of dead Gazans kinda sour the whole ‘cheerleading’ deal for those with a brain and a conscience…Major.

PS. And this shocking statistical aberration via Lenin

The United Nations says [yesterday] 320 people have been killed in Gaza, including 62 women and children, and around 1,400 injured.

“[The 62 figure] does not include civilian casualties who are men, even though we know that there have been some civilian men killed as well,” UN humanitarian affairs co-ordinator John Holmes said.

So Palestinian man=Hamas/combatant to someone compiling the figures???

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London Gaza Demo New Details

Stop Gaza Massacre
Hands Off Gaza: Stop the Bombing: Free Palestine
Assemble 12:30pm Embankment, WC2

Nearest tube Embankment.
Called by Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Stop the War Coalition, British Muslim Initiative and many other organisations.

Join the demonstration – message from Tony Benn:

The Israeli Government, armed and supported by President Bush, with its savage attack on the people of Gaza now represents the greatest threat to security in the Middle East and the world peace movement is mobilizing on a massive scale to defeat this aggression.
I appeal to everyone who can possibly do so to attend the many demonstrations that are being held here so that the British government is left in no doubt as to the strength of opposition there is to this war.

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Free Gaza Ship Makes Safe Harbour In Lebanon

Also BBC footage here.

(Lebanon, Tuesday 30 December)
Today the Free Gaza ship “Dignity” carefully made its way to safe harbor in Tyre, Lebanon’s southern-most port city after receiving serious structural damage when Israeli warships rammed its bow and the port side, Waiting to greet the passengers and crew were thousands of Lebanese who came out to show their solidarity with this attempt to deliver volunteer doctors and desperately needed medical supplies to war-ravaged Gaza. The Lebanese government has pledged to provide a forensic analysis of what happened in the dark morning, when Israel rammed the mercy ship in international waters, and put the people on board in danger of losing their lives.

The Dignity was on a mission of mercy to besieged Gaza, and was attacked by the Israeli Navy at approximately 6am (UST) in international waters, roughly 90 miles off the coast of Gaza. Several Israeli warships surrounded the small, human rights boat, firing live ammunition around it, then intentionally ramming it three times. According to ship’s captain Denis Healy, the Israeli attack came, “”without any warning, or any provocation.”

Caoimhe Butterly, an organizer with the Free Gaza Movement, stated that, “The gunboats gave us no warning. They came up out of the darkness firing flares and flashing huge floodlights into our faces. We were so shocked that at first we didn’t react. We knew we were well within international waters and supposedly safe from attack. They rammed us three times, hitting the side of the boat hard. We began taking on water and, for a few minutes, we all feared for our lives. After they rammed us, they started screaming at us as we were frantically getting the lifeboats ready and putting on our life jackets. They kept yelling that if we didn’t turn back they would shoot us.”

Cynthia McKinney, former U.S. congresswoman and Green Party presidential candidate, was traveling to Gaza aboard the Dignity in order to assess the impact of Israel’s military onslaught against the civilian population of the Gaza Strip. According to McKinney, “Israeli patrol boats…tracked us for about 30 minutes…and then all of a sudden they rammed us approximately three times, twice in the front and once in the side…the Israelis indicated that [they felt] we were involved in terrorist activities.”

The Dignity departed from Larnaca Port in Cyprus at 7pm (UST) on Monday 29 December with a cargo of over 3 tons of desperately needed medical supplies donated to Gaza by the people of Cyprus. Three surgeons were also aboard, traveling to Gaza to volunteer in overwhelmed hospitals and clinics. Cypriot Port authorities searched the ship before it left, and its passenger list was made public.

Israel’s deplorable attack on the unarmed Dignity is a violation of both international maritime law and the UN Convention on the Law of the Sea, which states, “the high seas should be reserved for peaceful purposes.”

Delivering doctors and urgently needed medical supplies to civilians is just such a “peaceful purpose.” Deliberately ramming a mercy ship and endangering its passengers is an act of terrorism.

“This despicable action by the Israeli military is not going to stop us. We are going back again and again and again until the people of Gaza are free,” emphasized Free Gaza organizer, Ramzi Kysia.

a birthday pause

30th- The blog is two, I am forty, so is it possible to imagine respite for a night, a wee pause for cake and licentious behaviour…

Read the rest of this entry »

Fight The Power- Gaza Protests

National Demonstration: London Saturday 3 January

Stop Gaza Massacre
(STWC) Hands Off Gaza: Stop the Bombing: Free Palestine
Assemble 12:30pm Embankment, WC2
Nearest tube Embankment.
Called by Palestine Solidarity Campaign, Stop the War Coalition, British Muslim Initiative and many other organisations. Israel has launched a terror bombing against the people of Gaza, with over 350 dead and many more injured. Not content after 3 days of devastating slaughter, the Israeli government promises more barbarity to come. The head of the Israeli military says, “This is only the beginning”.

The people of Gaza are asking, if this is only the beginning, what will the end look like?

Other demonstrations in London

  • Wednesday 31 December, 2 – 4pm outside Israeli Embassy
  • Thursday 1 January, 2 – 4pm outside Israeli Embassy
  • Friday 2 January 2 – 4 pm outside the Egyptian Embassy, 26 South Street, London, W1K 1DW.
    Call for Egypt to open the border immediately.

Demonstrations round the country

  • Glasgow
    Saturday 3 january 12 noon outside Lloyds TSB St Vincent Street then assemble for demo at Blytheswood Square 2pm
  • Edinburgh
    Saturday 3 January 12 noon. Foot of the mound, Princes Street
  • Bristol
    Centre, opposite the Hippodrome, Tuesday – Friday 5.00 – 6.00 and Saturday 3.00 – 4.00
  • Cardiff
    Tuesday 30 december 12 to 1pm. Outside Cardiff market / St John’s church, the Hayes.
    Wednesday 31 December new year vigil. Nye bevan statue, Queen street
  • Nottingham
    Tuesday 30 December 12 noon, Market Square
  • Southampton
    Tuesday 30 December 12 to 2pm, West Quay entrance, High Street
  • Portsmouth
    Saturday 3 January 11am, Guildhall Square Organised by Portsmouth Network for a Just settlement of the Arab-Israeli conflict and Portsmouth Stop the War Coalition
  • Hull
    Saturday 3 January, 11am. Queen Victoria Square.
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Israeli Navy Rams FreeGaza Ship In International Waters

On Tuesday, December 30, at 5 a.m., several Israeli gunboats intercepted the Dignity as she was heading on a mission of mercy to Gaza. One gunboat rammed into the boat on the port bow side, heavily damaging her. The reports from the passengers and journalists on board is that she is taking on water and appears to have engine problems. When attacked, the Dignity was clearly in international waters, 90 miles off the coast of Gaza.

The gunboats also fired their machine guns into the water in an attempt to stop the mercy ship from getting to Gaza.

As the boat limps toward Lebanon, passengers have been in contact with the Lebanese government who have said the captain has permission to dock and are willing lend assistance if needed. Cyprus sea rescue has also been in touch, and has offered assistance as well. The Dignity clearly flies the flag of Gibraltar, is piloted by an English captain and has a passenger manifest that includes Representative Cynthia McKinney from the U.S. The attack was filmed by the journalists, and the crew and passengers will report on Israel’s crime at sea once they arrive in Lebanon.

On board the boat are doctors traveling to this impoverished slice of the Mediterranean to provide badly-needed relief at the hospitals there.  The crew and passengers were also hoping to take wounded out for treatment, since the hospitals are not coping. In addition, the Dignity was carrying 3 tons of medical supplies at the request of the doctors in Gaza.

The three physicans on board who were sailing to Gaza are: Dr. Halpin (UK), an experienced orthopaedic surgeon, medical professor, and ship’s captain. He has organized humanitarian relief efforts in Gaza on several occasions with the Dove and Dolphin. He is traveling to Gaza to volunteer in hospitals and clinics. Dr. Mohamed Issa (Germany), a pediatric surgeon from Germany is traveling to Gaza to volunteer in hospitals and clinics. Dr. Elena Theoharous (Cyprus), MP Dr. Theoharous is a surgeon and a Member of the Cypriot Parliament. She is traveling to Gaza to assess the ongoing conflict, assist with humanitarian relief efforts, and volunteer in hospitals.

Yet Israel thumbs its nose in the face of maritime law by attacking a human rights boat in international waters and has put all of these human rights observers at risk. At no time was the Dignity ever close to Israeli waters. They clearly identified themselves and the Israeli attack was willful and criminal.

The Dignity is still in international waters, 40 miles off Haifa. Everybody on board is safe at the moment as the boat slowly makes its way to safety in Lebanon.

Update: (11.50 am UTC/GMT) Al Jazeera Arabic and English both reported that they are on their way to Lebanon. According to Al Jazeera Arabic live, they will be greeted by UNIFIL and the Lebanese Navy in 15 minutes. They should arrive in Tyre/Sour in one hour. The Lebanese President gave orders to meet the boat and to offer it all assistance. Several MPs from the area are there to meet them. There will be a public meeting (demonstration) to greet them in Tyre. There is a hotel in Tyre that is booked for them to rest.

I’d love to hear how some pro-war pice of shit justifies attacking a boat delivering medical aid, no really, feel free to make a dick of yourself and line up with war crimes, history is full of such rationalisations of evil.