6 June, 2010 — Ali Abunimah
Captured, disarmed hijackers did not face “lynching” as Israel claimed
The website of Turkish newspaper Hürriyet published a gallery of photos showing Israeli soldiers captured after their attack on the Mavi Marmara in international waters in the early hours of 31 May.
The predictable response of the Israeli army, as quoted in Haaretz, was that the “published pictures serve as clear and unequivocal proof of Israel’s repeated arguments that aboard [the Mavi Marmara] were mercenaries who intended to kill Israeli soldiers.”
Israeli spokespersons and media in recent days have also claimed the soldiers faced “lynching,” a provocative term which originated to describe the deliberate mob murders of African Americans by white supremacists in the United States.The photos indicate nothing of the sort; if anything they show the opposite.
First, it is clear that the passengers would have had ample time and opportunity to seriously harm or kill the Israeli soldiers if that had been their intention. While at least 9 flotilla passengers were killed by the Israelis, no Israeli was killed even though it appears at least two and up to four were disarmed and captured as they carried out an illegal, unprovoked armed attack on a civilian ship in international waters.In some of the Hürriyet photos passengers or medics appear to be protecting and aiding the Israeli soldiers. Below we see a passenger taking a clearly wounded Israeli attacker and protecting him — not from any violent attack — but merely from being photographed.