Surprise! Finnish “aid” ship to Gaza was carrying no aid at all

Flotilla follies

Israeli Navy soldiers yesterday boarded the one-boat “flotilla” trying to break the blockade of Gaza and bring humanitarian aid to the area, and found- to no one’s surprise – no aid for Gaza.

Israeli Navy soldiers seized control of the Gaza-bound ship Estelle, which was seeking to breach Israel’s naval blockade on Gaza, the army’s Spokesperson’s Unit reported at around 11:40 am on Saturday.

The rerouted vessel arrived in the Ashdod port shortly after 9 pm. An initial search did not find any humanitarian aid supplies aboard the ship, the IDF said.

The army said the soldiers boarded the Swedish-owned, Finnish-flagged ship which was carrying pro-Palestinian activists – including three Israelis – in accordance with the government’s decision and international law, after diplomatic efforts to prevent the vessel from reaching Gaza’s shore had failed.

The raid was conducted by commandoes from the elite Shayatet-13 unit after Navy missile ships surrounded the Estelle.

“When the (ship’s) passengers made it clear that they would not cooperate or accept the invitation to sail to the Ashdod Port, it was decided to seize the vessel and lead it to the Ashdod Port,” the army said in a statement.

“The Navy force operated as planned to guarantee the safety of the soldiers and passengers on the deck. The soldiers did not use force while seizing the ship.”

The passengers were to be handed over to police and immigration authorities once the ship reached Ashdod.

According to the Gush Shalom organization, three Israeli citizens were aboard the Estelle. The pro-Palestinian activists – Elik Elhanan, Reut Mor and Yonatan Shapira – were brought to the ship on a motorboat that arrived from Greece.

“I want to say that we are here to give a message of solidarity to the people of Gaza,” Mor was quoted by CNN as saying from aboard the ship.

“The siege is inhuman and immoral, and this is the reason – as non-violent peaceful activists – (we) decide(d) to risk ourselves and break the siege.”

Israeli Navy boards the Estelle "aid" ship

Israeli Navy boards the Estelle “aid” ship to Gaza

Shame on those treasonous Israelis who sympathise with the terrorists who would kill their fellow compatriots given half a chance.

As for “risking themselves to break the siege”, I will leave the last word to a Ynet commenter (comment #3) who succinctly states:

They “risk their lives” How pathetic! they know exactly that Israel is the only country in the ME where they would NOT risk their lives by breaking a legal siege, unless they attack like on the Mavi. Detain them and release them only after they have payed the costs of the IDF involvement!

As the Prime Minister said:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu lauded the IDF’s operation and blasted the ship’s passengers.

“Even the people aboard the ship know that there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza, and that their entire goal is to provoke and slander Israel. If these activists really cared about human rights, they would have sailed to Syria.

“We will continue protecting our borders with might and determination,” he added.

Victoria Strand, a Stockholm-based spokeswoman for the campaign, told AFP earlier that the Estelle had “come under attack” shortly after being approached by Israeli vessels.

Miss Strand, the word “attack” doesn’t mean what you think it means.

[...]

The activists said the 53-meter vessel carried two olive trees, 41 tons of cement, books, toys and medical equipment.

Coals to Newcastle in other words.

The organizers of the “Ship to Gaza Sweden” campaign said the Estelle carried about 30 people, including parliament members from Sweden, Norway, Greece and Spain.

Why are foreign politicians interfering in Israeli security issues? Do they also go to the Syrian-Turkish border to aid one side or the other? Did they do so in Libya? Or is it only the one Jewish country in the world that exercises them so? And which they know will not kill them or harm them on their infantile escapade?

IDF Chief of Staff Lt.-Gen. Benny Gantz has instructed the military Advocate General, Maj.-Gen. Danny Efroni, to explore legal options against the activists.

A senior Defense Ministry official said Israel “has a right to operate at sea to prevent the smuggling of arms to terror organizations.”

He called the Estelle passengers “provocateurs who are drive by hatred for Israel.”

The official stressed that “there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza. More than 1,500 trucks carrying tons of goods enter Gaza each week through the land crossings.”

The IDF stressed that the preparations to intercept the ship were conducted only after diplomatic efforts to stop the sail had failed.

The army said this week that the activists want to create a provocation and draw international media attention. Therefore, the army said, it plans to document the raid on the ship from several angles.

When even the Red Cross and Hamas itself admit there is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza, the flotllidiots should realize that they are on very shaky ground. Or rather, water.

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5 Responses to Surprise! Finnish “aid” ship to Gaza was carrying no aid at all

  1. Rob Harris says:

    The key to these flotillas is propaganda since they hold little possibility of actually breaking the blockade. The last time the Irish tried to get past the blockade late last year, one of the evident strategies was to prolong to process of repatriation by refusing to co-operate and appealing to the Israeli legal system. At the same time pro-Palestinians back home caused an absolute stink, including the socialists like Joe O’Higgins in the Parliament. They went on about being imprisoned, being threated in an inhumane fashion etc. It was all bull of course. They were whinging about having their mobile phones taken off them etc. which was a joke but it was still effective, and then there was a hoohah when they were returning via Dublin Airport,

    There wasn’t any Irish aboard this time thankfully so it didn’t get huge coverage in my country but I assume they will do the same in Greece, sweden etc. Therefore I think the Israeli State has to sidestep the lengthy process of repatriation. I suggest they should not take them onto Israeli territory so they can’t accuse Israel of discrimination but rather transfer them onto another ship unassociated with Israeli ownership, and sail them very very s-l-o-w-l-y back to their point of origin.

    Meanwhile they should sell the ship(s) they arrive in and symbolically give the money to the PA, since they are Hamas’ rivals, and were forced by Hamas out of Gaza illegitimately. :)

    • anneinpt says:

      I’m with you all the way Rob, until the last part:

      Meanwhile they should sell the ship(s) they arrive in and symbolically give the money to the PA,

      They should indeed sell the ships, and then they should give the money – in real terms, not symbolic – to the residents of Sderot and the south, to pay for bomb shelters, fortifying classrooms and for psychological counselling especially for the traumatised children (and adults too).

  2. Rob Harris says:

    Anne, I agree that it should go to Sderot but the reason I suggested the PA was as a counter-propaganda measure to harm their campaign – giving it to the Palestinians would look better IMO.

    I hope there are some Israeli politicians out there that are also keen on speeding up or completely avoiding the repatriation process as its hurting Israel needlessly IMHO.

  3. Bernard says:

    You can only take your hat off to Israel for the patience they show with this latest, repellent motley crew.

    If they tried this stunt in any other country in the ME they be met with a belt-fed machine gun.

    Israel has it off to a fine art. They arrive – jihadists, Hamas supporters, “humanitarians”, idiots, lesbians, gays, bisexuals and transgenders – and whatever your shagging yourself this weekend – deranged left-wing politicians, deranged people with no particular political affiliation, wannabe terrorists, hippies and one seriously drunk best man from a stag party who thought The Flotilla was a nightclub – and the military hauls them to port, where they find that the humanitarian supplies aboard consist of a two cans of beans, one bottle of cider (special brew mind you), a gone off kebab and chip, a half eaten cheese sandwich and a Mars bar -for those that do no work, constantly rest and K – as in Katyusha.

    Israel then deports the lot of them – Shalom, see y’all next summer. Make sure to pick pick up something for mum in duty free “- and they return home to a heroes reception after vacationing in what Mark Steyn described as someone else’s despair.

    However, I don’t entirely agree with the brilliant Steyn. They (the above) are trying to break a legal naval blockade to vacation in someone else’s self-induced despair. For Israel has nothing to do with the state, quite literally, they find themselves in.

    Meanwhile, up the road from Israel the streets of Syria are running with the blood of civilians, some of whom are Palestinians. How many flotillas have sailed into Syria over the last year?

    Exactly.

    • anneinpt says:

      Bernard, absolutely brilliant comment and spot-on. Your ironic humour has shown up the flotilidiots for the hypocrites they are. And it was very very funny too. :-)

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