6 June, 2010 — MRZine
The videos below show images of the passengers on the Turkish Gaza aid ship Mavi Marmara immediately after the Israeli attack, published for the first time by TV Net today. The scenes on the Mavi Marmara were shot by Adem Özköse.
6 June, 2010 — MRZine
Political theater now grips Greece. As with ancient Greek plays, today’s drama also reaches and touches everyone else. We sense Greece’s dilemmas becoming our own.
Her rulers declare that a crisis now threatens Greece. They blame it on the masses. To overcome it, they must impose great suffering on the masses. The rulers’ chorus intones the absolute necessity, the utter unavoidability of that suffering as the only solution. There is, it insists, no other option. The masses waver. Many lean toward resignation, accepting the suffering as punishment for their sins that caused the crisis. For the moment, the rulers exult as their elaborate political theater of blame seems to have successfully shifted the costs of the crisis from them to the masses. And yet, there are also signs of impending oppositional anger from the masses. Huge demonstrations rocked Athens in May. Cathartic moments loom.
6 June, 2010 — MRZine
‘Israel does not need enemies: it has itself. Or more precisely: it has its government,’ writes The New Republic’s Leon Wieseltier in a bitingly titled column, ‘Operation Make the World Hate Us: The Assault on the ‘Mavi Marmara’ Was Wrong, and a Gift to Israel’s Enemies.’
It’s not just an Israeli government initiative. Operation Make The World Hate Us has another valuable asset — the Deputy Managing Editor of the Jerusalem Post Caroline Glick, who under the auspices of the US-based Center for Security Policy has just released one of the most gratuitously offensive (and on so many levels, it’s quite remarkable) video creations to afflict the year 2010, ‘We Con the World,’ which appears to mock the nine dead (or more — six are still reported as missing) activists killed on the Turkish Mavi Marmara when Israeli Defense Force commandos stormed the boat. According to a British eyewitness interviewed by UK-based The Press Association, 48 people aboard the ship received gunshot wounds.
Two notable organizational patrons of Glick’s video are the Center for Security Policy and Christians United for Israel. Glick’s industrial-strength polemics include claims that there is a ‘totalitarian jihadist ideology which is ascendant throughout the Islamic world.’ According to the Jewish organization Jews on First, Glick has advocated the unilateral bombing of Iran.
6 June, 2010 — RT Top Stories
Activist Youssef Benderbal gave RT a first-hand account of Israel’s attack on the humanitarian Freedom Flotilla which had been heading for Gaza this week.
RT: Mr Youssef thank you very much for talking to RT. We’ve already heard the Israeli point of view over the humanitarian aid ship seizure. We would now like to hear yours. Can you tell us how it all happened?
Youssef Benderbal: First of all, you should understand that all the ships that were taking part in that action had gathered in one place in international waters. I am insisting that they were in international waters because, in accordance with the free access principle, a presence in international waters doesn’t require permission from any country. This is the first thing I would like to say.
Second, the ships were close to each other. I was on the Greek vessel. There were also some influential people on board and peace activists of various nationalities: Greeks, Italians, Frenchmen and even Americans. I’d love to give credit to the US ambassador, the former US ambassador in Iraq. He is 81 years old, but he accompanied us all the time on our sea voyage.
5 June, 2010 — RT Top Stories
As the battle over the Gaza flotilla is raging in the world’s press, Israel is fighting back. The Israeli government is hoping YouTube and Twitter can help restore its reputation.
The troops it has sent into cyberspace are relatively few – Aliza Landes, who heads Israel Defense Forces’ foreign press branch and four people under her command.
When the flotilla disaster struck, they posted a footage filmed from an Israeli naval boat alongside the ship. It shows passengers beating up Israeli troops. The footage was filmed from a chopper above and shows the commandos on board. Nearly two million people watched the videos making them the two most popular hits on You Tube this week.
But some critics won’t let Israel get off the hook so easily.
‘Israel is in the business of manipulating public opinion, it has been in this business for 40 or 50 years. They are very smart about how to create a media narrative, how to present themselves as the victims in almost every instance and how to portray anyone else as the aggressor or even perhaps anti-Semitic,’ believes Danny Schechter, American blogger, film maker and media critic.
Israel’s battleground has shifted from the Mediterranean to digital data. And they know it – which is why immediately after commandos stormed the flotilla, the Israeli army tried to block all forms of communication. But their plan failed. And the cameras on the boat successfully transmitted images throughout most of the takeover.
‘If you look at the Israeli media, the way they describe it is lynch or that the Israeli soldiers were ambushed. They are now mocked by the entire international community,’ says Gilad Atzmon, jazz musician, writer, and former Israeli soldier.
Since Tuesday, the IDF has uploaded 15 new videos. It includes footage from the incident, arrests, confiscations, and interviews with wounded soldiers.
But many Israelis feel their government and army are not doing enough to put across the Israeli point of view and this is why hundreds have taken to the streets of Tel Aviv to try and get their voices heard.
The word ‘Flotilla’ has been tweeting around cyberspace for days now – and is likely to continue for a few more as three more ships head for Gaza.”
6 June, 2010 — RT Top Stories
Israel’s navy has towed the humanitarian aid ship ‘Rachel Corrie’, sailing under an Irish flag, to the port city of Ashdod. It had earlier been boarded by Israeli troops off the blockaded coast of Gaza.
Nevertheless, international aid activists have vowed to send more ships to try and break through the Israeli blockade of Gaza in the coming weeks.
Since the early hours of Saturday morning, three Israeli ships had been shadowing the Rachel Corrie.
There have been 16 activists on board the ship, including a former Peace Prize laureate, as well as Denis Halliday, the former UN Assistant Secretary General. It is reported the Israelis met no resistance.
This comes after Israeli prime minister Benjamin Netanyahu told senior Cabinet ministers late Thursday that no vessel would be allowed to break the blockade of Gaza.
The experience of Greens in Ireland, Czech Republic and Germany shows that you can’t be a progressive force while selling your soul for a seat at the big man’s table.
There’s nothing particularly left-wing about caring about the environment. I know plenty of Tories who are passionate about tackling climate change for instance. And when I say plenty I mean two, but I’ve no reason to doubt their sincerity. In fact conservationism, the movements to preserve the lesser spotted voles of Dingle Wood and chums, has often been the preserve of the more conservative elements of society.
The Charter of the Global Greens sees Green Party politics as something far wider than simply caring about the environment. The six core strands are ‘Ecological Wisdom, Social Justice, Participatory Democracy, Nonviolence, Sustainability, Respect for Diversity’ which looks to four movements; ‘the peace movement, the civil rights movement, the environmental movement, and the labour movement.’
In other words the politics of the Green Parties around the world are not just about single issue campaigning, there is a specific and integrated political philosophy even if, like all parties, this is often realised in very different ways in different countries.