Right now four small boats are on their way to Palermo, Italy, to dare a crossing to besieged Gaza. Because of the rockets from Gaza on July 13 (whatever the true story behind their launch) the Gaza Flotilla 2018 is in even more peril from a cruel IDF puffed up on its own righteousness. In 2010 the Israelis killed ten on the Mavi Marmara and have often been brutal in captures since.
Their only defense is publicity and Congressional comment that may embarrass Israel and the U.S into treating them properly (or even letting them in). The boats are scheduled to reach Palermo on the 16th of this month and leave on the 19th for Gaza.
The boat includes several American citizens. One is Mazin Qumsiyeh, Director of the Palestinian Museum of Natural History in Bethlehem. Another is Joe Meadors, a Navy veteran and survivor of the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS Liberty.
Please contact your local media and ask them to cover the story. Contact your member of Congress.
Some points to bring up:
- Israel has no right to put 1.8 million people under siege for a dozen years.
- Whenever Palestinians in Gaza satisfy an Israeli demand (return of a captured soldier, suspending rockets, etc.) the Israeli government comes up with new demands
- Israel just responded to overwhelmingly peaceful #GreatMarchOfReturn by murdering over a 100 people and shooting thousands.
- Freedom Flotilla boats going into Gaza are all treated as if they were loaded with weapons even though they’re inspected beforehand.
- The Israelis illegally intercept the boats on the high seas, make no pretense about inspecting for weapons. They just seize the boats and arrest the passengers.
- In 2010 they killed 10 passengers on the Mavi Marmara (9 died right away and one was put in a coma and died four years later).
- Israel even stops boats trying to LEAVE Gaza with wounded people or with articles of trade, something that couldn’t conceivably harm Israelis. The latest attempts this month with small boats with sick and wounded Palestinians were deemed by the IDF as criminal “provocations at sea,” a nonsensical offense.
The website for the effort is https://jfp.freedomflotilla.
Please let me know of your efforts firstname.lastname@example.org
Stanley Heller is Administrator of Promoting Enduring Peace and host of the TV news magazine “The Struggle.”
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