The Raid on the Mavi Marmara

From the Israeli journalist Gershom Gorenberg, a tightly argued critique of both the IDF's attack on the Gaza flotilla and the earlier follies that led to the clash.

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  • ||

    http://legalinsurrection.blogs.....nwald.html

    Anyone else see Eliot Spitzer destroying Glenn Greenwald. It is very informative of the difference between people who really do things and douchebags like Greenwald who do nothing but pontificate and bully.

    Spitzer is totally loathsome and evil. But, he was and is a big time lawyer. And Greenwald didn't have a chance against him. It is pretty funny to watch.

  • ||

    Spitzer is a life long government hack. I wouldn't classify him as "People who really do things".

  • ||

    Trying cases is doing things, even if the cause he represented was loathsome. The point is that Sitzer, while evil, really is a big time smart lawyer. And Greenwald is just an internet douche. It was a mismatch.

  • ||

    I picked this up from another thread:

    Gaza humanitarian flotilla was delivering medicinal bulletproof vests.

    "During its searches of the Mavi Marmara on Tuesday, the military also discovered a cache of bulletproof vests and night-vision goggles, as well as gas masks"

    http://www.jpost.com/Israel/Article.aspx?id=177169

  • hmm||

    Preventative medicine.

  • Bradley||

    US citizens having bulletproof vests = OK
    Palestinians having bulletproof vests = bad

    Is this the logic here? Did I figure it out?

  • ||

    No, you just made a strawman.
    The point is that peace activists with no intention of violence wouldn't be bringing gear that has the explicit purpose of violent conflict with armed forces such as the IDF.

  • Bradley||

    The point is that peaceful citizens with no intention of violence wouldn't be buying gear that has the explicit purpose of violent conflict with police forces such as the NYPD.

    Go ahead: explain why it's morally right for the state of Israel to forbid body armor to Gazans but morally wrong for the US to do the same to its own citizens.

  • ||

    Right, call me when you stop fixating on your strawman of a point nobody made and notice the point that was made.

  • Bradley||

    The only point you made is that people calling themselves peace activists were smuggling body armor, night vision goggles and gas masks into Gaza. What you didn't do is explain why the IDF has the moral right to forbid Gazans from having these things.

    I admit that I may've made a mistake in assuming you had any libertarian leanings at all. If you think that it's OK for states to forbid citizens (or quasi-citizens, in Gaza's case) from having the means to defend themselves, then I'll gladly concede that your authoritarian, statist worldview is totally consistent.

    On the other hand, if you believe — like I do — that everyone has the natural right to defend himself, then you need to explain why Israel can violate that right for Gazans.

  • People Power Hour||

    Actually, a bullet-proof vest's explicit purpose isn't violent conflict. It is to protect the wearer from bullets, presumably shot from tthe guns of people who wish you harm.

    Talk about a straw man....

  • Fluffy||

    Greenwald destroyed Spitzer, in the brief time he was given to address what amounted to "Spitzer's Israeli Propaganda Hour".

  • ||

    It is a good article. It doesn't mention the elephant in the room, however. And that is Syria and Iran's intention to arm Hammas so that they can hit Israel from both the North with Hezbollah and the South with Hammas. At this point though, I think the blockade is worse than Hammas getting Iranian arms. If Hammas starts attacking Israel, Israel will finally have an excuse to launch a full out war and destroy Hammas. As it is, Israel is just punishing innocent civilians and accomplishing nothing.

  • ||

  • jtuf||

    Gazan are still launching rockets into Israel, but the World does not think Israel has the right to launch a full out war. Israel is in a no win situation.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    Gazan are still launching rockets into Israel, but the World does not think Israel has the right to launch a full out war. Israel is in a no win situation.


    Why does the world think that?

  • ||

    Oh joy, more on Israel, the place where TEAM RED and TEAM BLUE can project their respective emotions, positions, and partisan conflicts onto so that they can go TEAM RED TEAM BLUE in yet another aspect of the world and life.

    It's so very tiresome. Can we just stop being involved with all of these people? Now?

  • ||

    No we can't. The world is too small and the middle east too important. We can stop being involved when sub Saharan African countries get into it. But when middle eastern countries do, we are stuck being involved.

  • RyanXXX||

    You realize this conflict has lasted so long because of the foreign aid we have supplied? Us "getting involved" starts the majority of the problems over there.

    Without U.S. government aid, both sides would either have to come to the table and work something out, or one would simply be destroyed and the hostilities would end.

  • ||

    No without US Aid, the arabs would destroy Israel and that would be the end of it. And further, if US aid is so bad, why isn't Syrian and Iranian aid just as bad? If they would stop funding Hammas, Hammas would give up the dream of destroying Israel and make peace.

    And the US isn't responsible for even a small minority of the problems over there. The US while a super power, isn't omnipotent. Conflicts happened long before and will continue long after the US is no longer around.

  • ||

    The US should not be responsible for keeping Israel afloat either.

  • ||

    Are you saying Israel can't defend itself? Because there have been a few wars where Israel proved it can do so easily. They don't need our money to defend themselves. AT ALL. So why are we giving it to them (and Egypt as well)?

  • ||

    Israel got a lot of aid from France and Europe back in the 60s. I don't know that Israel can't defend itself. But if the US did walk away, it would embolden the hell out of their enemies and probably produce a full scale war.

    And as far as aiding Egypt, Egypt isn't an enemy anymore. The whole problem really boils down to Syria and Iran. The rest of the Arab states could give a shit less about destroying Israel or the Palestinians.

  • ||

    They have nukes. Allegedly around 200. They can protect themselves just fine.

  • ||

    If Egypt had anything resembling democracy, they would almost certainly be an enemy of Azrael. One of the convenient gaps in neocon ideology about spreading democracy in the Middle East.

  • BakedPenguin||

    I agree with RyanXXX - we're enablers. Stop funding these idiots (on both sides), and tell them "you assholes don't want peace - you just want to kill each other, and we're sick of it. If you want to keep killing each other, do it on your own fucking dime."

    And Israel wouldn't collapse without US aid. Their military is better than the Arabs' by an order of magnitude. The moral sanction we give them is far more important to them than the money.

  • ||

    What moral sanction? The whole world hates Jews. The Europeans would be dancing in the streets if Iran nuked Israel and killed all of the Jews. And Israel's behavior in Palestine, while harsh is no worse than France's behavior in Africa, China's behavior in Tibet or Russia's behavior in the Caucuses. Jew never get any moral sanction to do anything but die for the common good.

  • RyanXXX||

    "If Iran nuked Israel?"

    No reasonable, well-read person actually believes this will happen. Iran cares about its OWN influence and power and survival, like all other nation-states. Spending a decade or more developing nukes only to waste in on a country and be subsequently annihilated...don't see that happen.

    Now, using it as an "insurance" policy against America and Israel, and a way to expand Shiite power, THAT I can see.

  • ||

    Iran is not a rational actor.

  • ||

    And Israel's behavior in Palestine, while harsh is no worse than France's behavior in Africa, China's behavior in Tibet or Russia's behavior in the Caucuses.

    So what? None of those nations had moral sanction at the time and whether they did or not is irrelevant anyway.

  • Oswald Acted Alone||

    The Europeans would be dancing in the streets if Iran nuked Israel and killed all of the Jews.

    Oh come now. As you pointed out above, Israel got most of its early support from Europe while the US was still highly suspicious of the secular socialist form of Zionism.

    And Israel's behavior in Palestine, while harsh is no worse than France's behavior in Africa, China's behavior in Tibet or Russia's behavior in the Caucuses.

    Do you think that comparisons with Russia and China are actually a good defense of anything?

  • RyanXXX||

    We shouldn't have a dog in this fight. And, sorry to say, Arabs destroying Israel wouldn't be the end of the world. It would undoubtedly be a tragedy for the Israelis, but life goes on.

    In fact, there is a precedent. When Saladin reconquered Jerusalem for the muslims during the crusades, he allowed all the Jews to return and live unmolested under Islamic rule. Not ideal, but is it better than a constant conflict that isn't going anywhere?

  • ||

    Because Arab rule would end conflict. It is not like the Arabs don't hate each other or anything. And I think the death of a Democratic Western country in any region is a big deal.

  • RyanXXX||

    Even if that country CANNOT survive without a constant stream of aid from American taxpayers, and has a habit of constantly pissing everyone off? Even its few friends, like Turkey over this incident or Britain over the passport shenanigans?

  • Lord Ballsac||

    "...Democratic Western country..."

    Dude...what's Democratic about a country that makes it harder for non-Jews (Read: Arabs of any creed, color) to be represented in the government by definition. What is western about a country that by definition is based on a religion despite all of the lip-service paid to its secular nature? I guess it’s Western in the sense that it was carved up by failing Empires and handed over to an ethnic group largely decimated by a people from a completely different region. I think they would have been better off handing over a bunch of once Japanese-held Islands depopulated by the war but of course, that ignores the religious value of that shitastic desert. Seeing that phrase pisses me off. As if so-called Democracy is inherently a virtue. As if bulldozing the homes of those whose families lived there since the 19th century is anything like a free-market.

    That said, the Arabs' actions have done little to advance their cause in Israel, despite the international community's manufactured outrage/support. If only they threw their suicidal explosive bodies under tanks instead of into Starbucks. But, in the end, when you are fighting tanks with rocks (primarily), it might be more effective to take a beating/bullet for standing your ground, get it on camera and show the world.

    There are times I am glad I live in the U.S. despite its myriad of problems and inevitable future of Idicocracy. Right now is one of them.

  • ||

    "Dude...what's Democratic about a country that makes it harder for non-Jews (Read: Arabs of any creed, color) to be represented in the government by definition."

    It doesn't. The Israeli parliament has no apportioned seating.

  • Tony||

    Intent and practice are two very different things.

  • Chinny Chin Chin||

    You do realize Israel is the only nuclear power in the area?

    And that Palestinians have a beef with Israel that is completely, absolutely, and in all other ways independent of aid/funding from Syria and Iran?

  • ||

    Beef is not a weapon. It's what's for dinner.

    Weapons are what matters.

  • Sumbitch||

    Ah the might makes right doctrine. I guess that explains why we have to shell out taxes for all sorts of "just" and "efficient" projects like Medicare, Social Security, and this new healthcare boondoggle, not to mention two perpetual wars in two unwinnable regions. You've got to love that Might. It makes retarded bullshit almost seem reasonable.

  • Fluffy||

    John,

    No state - NO STATE - with hundreds of nuclear weapons is in any danger of having its political integrity as a state compromised.

  • jtuf||

    I'm not sure. If the USA took our navy out of the Gulf of Arabia, Arab countries might have to wake up and defend themselves against Iran instead of bullying Israel. We also give nearly a billion a year to the PA and well over a billion to Egypt.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    No without US Aid, the arabs would destroy Israel and that would be the end of it.


    No, it would not.

    After they destroy Israel, there will be more planes crashed into skyscrapers, more trains being bombed.

    Israel is what keeps those bastards from flying airplanes into American skyscrapers and bombing British trains.

  • Oswald Acted Alone||

    Unlikely.

  • ||

    The US gets as much oil from sub Saharan Africa than it does from the ME. What other reason do we have for meddling in the ME? Israel is not our ally. They are parasites draining the American taxpayer.

  • ||

    Oil is fungible. If the ME stopped producing oil, we would have a hard time getting it from the places we do.

  • His Eminency||

    Why would the ME stop producing oil?

  • ||

    They could get distracted.

  • DJF||

    Neither Israel nor Palestine produces any significant amounts of oil so they are unimportant in anything relating to oil. As to the rest of the Middle East, I doubt they would stop producing oil if the US was not involved in Israel or Palestine. You need to find another scare tactic, this one doesn’t work.

  • ||

    No, but their actions can easily cause a regional war. Hence US involvement.

  • DJF||

    Israel and Palestine are next to each other, how is it going to effect the oil producing regions? Especially if the US is not involved in either Israel or Palestine?

    As I said you need a new scare tactic, this one does not work

  • ||

    Those oil producing regions are populated with people who are highly likely to involve themselves if war broke out again. And, those people have their own conflicts brewing, that do not directly pertain to Israel.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    The US gets as much oil from sub Saharan Africa than it does from the ME. What other reason do we have for meddling in the ME? Israel is not our ally. They are parasites draining the American taxpayer.


    Every terrorist Israel kills is one less terrorist available to crash an airliner into a skyscraper.

  • Joshua||

    but every A-Rab Israel pisses off is another potential terrorist.

    There are no good answers.

  • ||

    If it is just team red versus team blue, why are two liberals (Greenwald and Spitzer) at each other's throats over it the above link? Do you ever see any analogy other than team red team blue?

  • RyanXXX||

    Greenwald was actually kicking Spitzer's ass, BTW. He called out the slick bastard on his lies that the ship was carrying weapons, was controlled by Hamas, etc. etc.

  • ||

    Spitzer destroyed Greenwald. And I say this as someone who hates Spitzer and finds Greenwald merely annoying and irrational. Greenwald was totally out of his weight class.

  • RyanXXX||

    No, he made Spitzer look like the liar he is.

    "Now, we all agree that they were controlled by Hamas..."
    "So, since the ship WAS carrying weapons..."

  • ||

    TEAM OCCUPIED and TEAM JEW?

  • ||

    I like that one.

  • ||

    If you want to disentangle, you have to lower your reliance on oil. Not just foreign oil. Oil.

    And since libertarians consistently oppose policies that would lower US oil dependency ("ewww! public transit cooties!"), I guess not. You are stuck dealing with this.

  • His Eminency||

    Why would disentangling from the ME then reduce oil's availability?

  • ||

    Wars are not conducive to easy logistics for oil export.

  • His Eminency||

    Are you saying Israel would nuke all the Arabs and Persians? Sounds like Israel effectively holds us hostage.

  • ||

    I am saying without US power projection in the ME, the region would destabilize. There are many, many parties itching to fight over there.

  • DJF||

    I disagree but lets assume you are right, why get involved in Israel and Palestine which has no oil? If the US has to get involved in the Middle East due to oil then we should get involved in counties that actually have significant amounts of oil and leave the rest alone. Wasting time, money and resources on non-oil countries makes no sense

  • ||

    Oil is fungible. If war disrupted Mideast oil exports, the market for all oil exports would go batshit crazy, and that would have consequences stateside. War is not likely to disrupt Norwegian oil exports. It is likely to disrupt Mideast exports. Hence the US presence.

  • DJF||

    Neither Israel nor Palestine have oil so there is no oil to disrupt so there is no reason to get involved. Why would Saudi Arabia or Iraq or Iran stop shipping oil in case of war in Israel? They stop shipping oil to the US because of the 73 war but that was because the US was supporting Israel. But if the US no longer supports anyone then there is no reason to stop shipping oil

    You might as well claim we need to get involved in Rwanda so that Nigerian oil exports are not disrupted.

  • ||

    Right, because massively expensive public transit boondoggles that no one uses will reduce our dependency on oil so much that we can get out of the Middle East.

    What gauge forceps did they use on your head when they forcibly pulled you out of your mother at birth? They must have been HUGE.

  • ||

    Those public transit boondoggles are a drop in the bucket compared to the biggest of them all, the US highway budget.

  • AA||

    -1

  • AA||

    That was for Omri, not you, Epi.

  • ||

    They don't have "-1 gauge" forceps, dude.

  • AA||

    They do now

  • ||

    What about the one your mom used to play with your dick?

  • Michael Ejercito||

    And since libertarians consistently oppose policies that would lower US oil dependency ("ewww! public transit cooties!"), I guess not. You are stuck dealing with this.


    What is stopping you from buying a bus or two and setting up your own bus line?

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Typical Neo-con repsonse: "Bu..but...ignoring it would make you an Anti-semite. And/Or a racist. And/Or a heartless Nazi. HOLOCAUST HOLOCAUST HOLOCAUST 9/11 9/11 HOLOCAUST 9/11 PEARL HARBOR HOLOCAUST."

    What a bunch of shit. You're right Epi. Let's wash our hands of it, pull back whatever aid (however little) we give any nation, and let them have their shitty piece of religious land complete with their irrational animosities, neverending revenge fantasies, and a U.S.-subsidized pseudo-socialist militarisitic police state.

    In a less vitriolic sense, I agree to some extent with Obama's assertion that the Palestinians should strive to be like the Civil Rights movement in the U.S., India, South Africa, etc. Non-violent resistance may suck in terms of injuries, deaths, and injustices suffered during the period of resistance but in a world infused with mass-media and dime-a-dozen journalism majors trying to find a story, showing via the internet/tv the beatings and murders of non-violent acitivists has got to be more productive than launching shitty mortars and horrific suicide attacks against Israel. Unfortunately for the Palestinians 60 years of entrenched poverty, perceived and actual injustice, violent religious indoctrination, and prodding from their "brothers" in other Middle Eastern nations have pushed them so far away from peaceful solutions they usually stamp out their own non-violent activists themselves.

    Another note: Not all Palestinians are radical Muslims, or even Muslim for that matter. Some that are lumped into the Palestinian/Arab camp are Christian and would just like to get to work without being molested by security cheif Ari (Whose father emigrated from the U.S. in 1970) or blown away by indiscriminate suicidal Omar(who hasn't worked a real job for 6 years). For good or bad, some who want peace but are caught in the middle are doing what Drax Sr. did, getting the fuck out.

  • ||

    Good article. There shouldn't be any argument about the legality, or even the justification, for what Israel did.

    As far as legality goes: Israel has declared and implemented a blockade of Gaza, for the good and sufficient reason that it is under constant attack from Gaza. With a blockade in place, Israel is well within its rights to board ships in "international" waters to enforce the blockade. None of this should be controversial.

    Israel's commandos were attacked with potentially lethal force - flash bangs, Molotov cocktails, metal bars, and knives. Lethal self-defense is clearly justified.

    Is the blockade smart? Well, its certainly a PR loser, but absolutely everything Israel does or could do, short of unconditional surrender, would be a PR loser.

    Is it effective in keeping arms out of Gaza? Who knows. Certainly the Egyptians are allowing arms into Gaza (in violation of their agreement when Israel pulled out of Gaza). Its not unreasonable to believe that allowing shiploads of arms to unload in Gaza make the situation worse.

  • ||

    The outrage is very selective. If a ship were carrying arms across the Caspian sea to some separtist group in Russia, the Russians would have just sunk it and no one would care. Same goes if the Mexicans stopped a ship in international waters with arms going to Chiapas. The ships were specifically trying to avoid inspection.

  • ||

    The ships were not carrying arms. Got any more straw men?

  • ||

    Yeah. They were not carrying guns. That is why they wouldn't submit to an inspection. And that is why the people on the ships were armed.

    I think Israel should end the blockade. But that doesn't mean I believe Hammas' propaganda either.

  • ||

    Kitchen knives, tools and rocks are arms now? The Israelis acted no differently than the pirates off the Horn of Africa.

  • ||

    When you use them to try to kill someone, yes.

  • RyanXXX||

    circular logic: We are going to board looking for "weapons"...nope, all they have is kitchen knives and crowbars. Wait, they're using them on us!!! They were transporting weapons after all!!!!

  • ||

    Several of them had guns. Further, as Omri pointed out below, once the blockade ends then there is no stopping the flow of weapons. So, the number of weapons on this particular ship really isn't the point.

  • RyanXXX||

    You mean the paintball guns?

  • pmains||

    The Israelis were the ones with the paintball guns. RyanXXX, if you haven't even bothered to read the news reports, please stop trying to contribute.

  • Chinny Chin Chin||

    The Turkish PM said the Turks inspected the cargo, and found no weapons.

  • ||

    And the Israelis are obliged to take their word, why, exactly?

  • ||

    There were night vision goggles on the boat.

    Ergo, the Turks lied.

  • Steve Nash Equilibrium||

    What kind of reasoning leads you to conclude that the Turks lied? Are you claiming that night vision goggles are weapons? Damn, the standards for admission at MIT are really slipping these days.

  • ||

    Night vision goggles are contraband. No nation would let them pass through a blockade.

  • ||

    Night vision goggles are not weapons.

    Fail.

  • ||

    Night vision goggles are not weapons. So I guess the Marines won't mind at all if I send a bunch to the Iraqi insurgents.

  • ||

    Topic change, false equivalence.

    Fail with prejudice.

    And to think I'd respected MIT. Of course, being good at engineering doesn't require you to be good at foreign policy.

  • Steve Nash Equilibrium||

    OK, so your definition of what constitutes a weapon is "something Marines would not like me to send to Iraqi insurgents." Got it. Basically everything is a weapon in Omri land.

  • ||

    International law defines what may, or may not, be intercepted by a naval blockade. Anything meant to assist soldiers in combat, e.g. night vision goggles, counts.

  • Oswald Acted Alone||

    International law defines what may, or may not, be intercepted by a naval blockade. Anything meant to assist soldiers in combat, e.g. night vision goggles, counts.

    Night visions goggles are common, if not standard, on ships, seeing as ships operate at night and there are no streetlights in middle of the Atlantic. If that's all you can come up with, you might as well be counting the flare guns as weapons.

  • DJF||

    And what independent source says that?

    Also boats do carry night vision equipment these days since they operate at night

  • ||

    There are pictures published of the equipment on the Israel foreign ministry website.

  • DJF||

    I just went to the web site and there are no pictures

  • ||

  • DJF||

    Those are not bullet proof vests, they are two thin. They look like the typical frag jackets that reporters, aid workers wear in war zones. Since the Israelis proved that it was a war zone by their actions then having them seems prudent. Or do the Israelis intend to shoot all the reporters and aid workers who wear them because they have war material?

    The binocular and other vision equipment looks like the kind of stuff you will find on any sea going ship

  • ||

    The only way for Israel to make sure of it was to board.

  • ||

    It doesn't matter that the ship wasn't carrying arms. You can't know that until you board and inspect.

    A ship that isn't carrying arms can go to the designated port for transshipment of humanitarian aid. Its not unreasonable to conclude that a ship that refuses to do so is engaged in something other than a humanitarian mission.

    The purpose of this ship was to break the blockade, so that other ships carrying arms can get to Gaza. This ship was funded by and staffed by anti-Israel fanatics.

    Really, I don't think there is much to argue about on the questions of legality and justification, only tactics, and (perhaps) the policy of the blockade in the first place.

  • ||

    Exactly. But it is much easier to start screaming Neo con than actually debate the facts.

  • ||

    The Israelis are preventing concrete and building materials from being delivered to Gaza, which are not weapons by any stretch of the imagination. That's the major bone being picked right now.

    I'll assume you don't have a response to this point, since I've brought it up in every thread and you ignore it.

  • pmains||

    I don't know what Israel's justification is for that, but I don't care, either. Yes, it might make life easier for the Gazans if they had said items. Well, too bad. They fired rockets into Israel, prompting a naval blockade. They can go back to living their lives once they agree to allow Israelis to do the same.

  • ||

    Gaza humanitarian flotilla was delivering medicinal bulletproof vests.

    "During its searches of the Mavi Marmara on Tuesday, the military also discovered a cache of bulletproof vests and night-vision goggles, as well as gas masks"

    http://www.jpost.com/Israel/Article.aspx?id=177169

  • jtuf||

    Actually, they had flash bombs, knives, and metal poles.

  • RyanXXX||

    "selective outrage?"

    What if Iran or North Korea had done this?

  • ||

    North Korea did last month. And no one seems to be doing much about it.

  • ||

    When France did this to Greenpeace, nobody gave a damn.

  • Kiwi Dave||

    Actually, we did give a damn when they blew up a Greenpeace ship in our harbour, killing an innocent photographer. But they seem to be able to get away with that kind of stuff (like when they invade their former colonies in Africa and no-one bats an eyelid).

  • ||

    I'll rephrase: "nobody in the perfumed palaces of Turtle Bay gave a damn."

  • ||

    That's right, Omri, just keep shifting the goalposts when the argument goes against you. Nobody will notice...

  • pmains||

    He wasn't saying that nobody anywhere noticed. He meant there wasn't the sort of international outrage that we have here. That should have been obvious from context, but he had to clarify for the slow learners like yourself.

  • ||

    Actually, France had to make restitution to New Zealand.

  • Cabeza de Vaca||

    Very true, if a ship was sending aid to the Kurds. I don't think the Turks would show any restraint.

    I could really care less about the Isreal or Palestine. It isn't our responsiblity to save the world or keep the peace. I really wish America & the UN would just let the Isrealis & Arabs fight it out once and for all.

  • Fluffy||

    The authority to create a blockade only applies to interstate conflicts.

    So if Israel would like to impose a blockade on Gaza, and have it be legal, the first step they would need to take would be to acknowledge the independence of a Palestinian state.

    Sorry, if you want the advantages of trying to create a stateless limbo in the OT, you have to accept the disadvantages too.

    Not that lying neocon dicklords won't try to have it both ways or anything.

  • ||

    "The authority to create a blockade only applies to interstate conflicts."

    Cite, kind sir? You going to claim that blockades are illegal in the event of a civil war?

  • Fluffy||

    Yes, I am.

    http://opiniojuris.org/2010/06.....aza-legal/

    The San Remo accord on blockades was only set up to apply to interstate conflicts for the pretty simple and obvious reason that in civil wars, the legal authority to close ports already belongs to the legitimate and recognized government.

    So if you have a civil war like the one we had in the US, if one side hasn't been recognized by the international community as independent, the existing government possesses the domestic legal authority to close whatever ports it chooses. International law questions never come up.

    The San Remo accord does not anticipate a situation where a state like Israel would simultaneously claim that the ports of an area are not its own, but would claim that the area in question is not part of another state, either, and that its "enemies" using those ports are neither belligerents of another state or subject to its own domestic law.

    Israel deliberately and as a matter of policy set up the stateless situation in Gaza, because in different contexts it benefits them. It benefits them that it doesn't have to extend its own constitution over the OT, and it benefits them that the Palestinians aren't recognized as having a state. But in this one situation, it fucks them. They can stay fucked.

  • ||

    "The San Remo accord does not anticipate a situation where a state like Israel would simultaneously claim that the ports of an area are not its own, but would claim that the area in question is not part of another state, either, and that its "enemies" using those ports are neither belligerents of another state or subject to its own domestic law."

    That happens to be the truth. Hamas is not part of any state, nor is it subject to Israeli law. None of that negates the legality of this blockade.

  • Fluffy||

    Yes, it does.

    If the international accord recognizing the right of belligerents to board third party vessels only applies to conflicts between states, then the fact that the Gaza conflict is not between states is determinative.

  • Bradley||

    I must've missed that part of the non-aggression principle that says collective punishment is OK.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    Is the blockade smart? Well, its certainly a PR loser, but absolutely everything Israel does or could do, short of unconditional surrender, would be a PR loser.


    Why is the deck stacked against Israel concerning PR?

  • ||

    I see the AIPAC stooges are out in front on this.

  • ||

    Just trying to keep up with the Hamas stooges.

  • dave b.||

    The Hamas stooges don't get the benefit of owning the mainstream media.

  • jtuf||

    Oh, and which alien spaceship told you the Jews runs the media?

  • pmains||

    Well the pro-flotilla slant seems to be dominant. The alleged "peace activists" violently attacked the IDF. Yet, the majority of the commentary I've seen indicates that the world is deluding itself into believing that these murderous thugs were "defenseless."

  • ||

    Its not unreasonable to believe that allowing shiploads of arms to unload in Gaza make the situation worse.

    Shiploads of arms? Wow.

    And, no, I am not going to bother to pretend there was nothing but "humanitarian aid" on those boats.

    And, more generally, it's funny how so many of the same people who freaked out over Rand Paul's lack of reverence for the Civil Rights Act have no problem with the way Israel treats the non-Chosen under their political and military control.

  • ||

    I agree. The way the Israelis treat Palestinian civilians is horrible. It needs to stop. Like I said above, lift the embargo and if Hammas attacks go in and kill every member of the organization and leave.

  • ||

    You know what happens when an army goes in to kill members of an organization like Hamas?

    Tens of thousands of deaths. That's what happens. This blockade is saving lives on both sides.

  • ||

    Yes and no. Maybe if the Palestinians had an spirit shattering defeat they might come to their senses. At this point, I don't see what the blockade is accomplishing.

  • ||

    The blockade is preventing the next Sderot schoolchild from joining this one at the rehab clinic:

    http://commons.wikimedia.org/w.....Israel.jpg

  • ||

    "For the children!!1!"

    Drink!

  • ||

    Laugh at a kid who got his foot blown off. You, sir, are classy.

  • highnumber||

    Exploit a child who got his foot blown off. Even classier.

  • ||

    hardly exploiting. He was hurt by a rocket from Gaza. The entire blockade is there to prevent more rockets from being launched from Gaza.

  • highnumber||

    You forgot to link to the picture again.

  • ||

    If the blockade is lifted, the next bunch of ships will cary arms, just like the Karin A (google it).

    This is the camel's nose in the tent.

  • Ska||

    I'd rather see the camel's toe in a skirt.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    And, more generally, it's funny how so many of the same people who freaked out over Rand Paul's lack of reverence for the Civil Rights Act have no problem with the way Israel treats the non-Chosen under their political and military control.


    Gazans are not citizens or residents of Israel.

    They have no more the protection of Israeli law than Germans or Japanese had protection of American law.

  • Joshua||

    then what the fuck are they?

  • ||

    Kill them all, let their respective Imaginary Friends sort them out.

  • RyanXXX||

    Or just convert them all to Christianity

  • ¢||

    If it is just team red versus team blue, why are two liberals (Greenwald and Spitzer) at each other's throats over it the above link?

    Spitzer is a representative of Actually Existing TEAM BLUE!, which is just as militaristic as TEAM RED!, and Greenwald is from TEAM BLUE! As Falsely Advertised, defined in opposition to TEAM RED!, regardless of the positions of Actually Existing TEAM BLUE!, which are the same as TEAM RED!'s.

    They don't mix well.

  • ||

    And since libertarians consistently oppose policies that would lower US oil dependency ("ewww! public transit cooties!"), I guess not. You are stuck dealing with this.

    I saw that coming from a mile off, Mister Choo Choo Man.

  • ||

    You'd see it even earlier if, you know, you paid attention to the US's infrastructure policies.

  • Warty||

    Dude, you might be aware that libertarians don't the US's infrastructure policies. If, you know, you paid attention.

  • ||

    That sentence no verb.

  • Warty||

    I accidentally it.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Despite Warty's dyslexia, the point still stands. US infrastructure policies in general are bullshit and hilariously, any time they push for public transit, they just make it more expensive through sheer incompetence and economic illiteracy.

  • ||

    And this kind of glibness is why you find few libertarians among civil engineers.

  • Warty||

    What's glib about it? Current policy is a clusterfuck and liberal mass transit wet dreams are even bigger clusterfucks.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    I'm a former Aerospace Engineer actually. Not exactly an exalted haughty civil engineer, but close enough. I essentially quit when I realized that 99% of Aerospace jobs are puff-jobs lobbied for by senators who want a bunch of "Rocket Scientists" in their states. Plus, NASA is a fucking waste. You can call me stupid/a hypocrite for trying to become something that Libertarians abhore, but I am a fucking idiot and nobody owes me anything for that. Don't worry about me though, I plan to retire early through suicide. No fuss, no muss.

  • Warty||

    Helpful tip, Drax: sky funerals are several times more metal than regular funerals.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    That sounds like the way to go Warty. You think I could do that on the White House lawn? The horror on Malia and Sasha's faces as Bo chewed on my entrails in front of the press would be a sight to behold. If only I could see it post mortem. C'est la vie.

  • ||

    May be so about aerospace. But in the meantime, civil engineering is not much harder than any variety. But a man in that profession cannot help but giggle and move on when he reads the usual glib comments from libertarians about how too much money is going to this or that project.

  • Warty||

    You keep saying "glib". Are you sure you know what it means?

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    "...the usual glib comments from libertarians about how too much money is going to this or that project."

    You've heard of the Big Dig right?

    Oy Vey.

  • Steve Nash Equilibrium||

    You'll find few libertarians among civil engineers because the majority of your job prospects would be gone without the government funding gravy train. It's a matter of self preservation.

  • ||

    I like Israel. In this world, you have to pick winners and losers. I say, fuck the palestinians.

  • Tster||

    Human rights, human freedom, international law - forever irritating annoyances to the Israeli right and its US backers.

  • ||

    I agree, they are annoying. Especially when they are merely words, used as a tool to help a bunch of shitheads, who have no idea what those words mean. Shitheads who would, and have, violated all those "norms" to kill as many innocents as they possibly can.

  • jtuf||

    + 1

  • ||

    Human rights, human freedom, international law - forever irritating annoyances to the Israeli right Hamas and its US backers everywhere.

  • jtuf||

    + 1

  • Fluffy||

    So what?

    The only question that has any relevance is whether or not Israel's conduct in the OT is legal and just.

    If it's not, any individual or group who wishes to undertake violence against that conduct is morally justified.

    If a Communist regime took over the US, and a bunch of neonazi skinheads took up arms against the regime, in the context of that revolutionary conflict the neonazis would be in the right. Their noisome ideology would not be relevant. It would only become relevant if their revolution succeeded and they became the new state [in which case the RC Dean Revolution would be morally entitled to undertake violence against them in turn].

  • Michael Ejercito||

    Human rights, human freedom, international law - forever irritating annoyances to the Israeli right and its US backers.


    The U.S. backed Stalin, a greater violator of human rights.

  • ||

    I like Israel.

    Hurray for you.

    As I have stated previously, if Israel adopted a U S -style Constitution, with particular emphasis on the First, Fifth, and Fourteenth Amendments (and extended those protections to EVERYONE in the territories they control), I might find them less unlikeable.

  • ||

    If Palestinians stopped engaging in terrorist attacks and using civilians as a human shield, I might find them less unlikeable.

  • DJF||

    If Israelis did not use their control of the Israeli legal system to take Palestinian land and resources then the Palestinians might not be so pissed off at Israelis. Just look at a map of the West Bank and see how Israel keeps expanding its control.

  • ||

    I guess what I meant to say is, I like them more than their enemies. Also, is that the constitution that Hamas and Hezbollah are espousing they will adopt when they destroy Israel? Maybe we can ask the Jews in the Gaza Strip. Oh, they left? Sorry.

  • Tony||

    You're right rac, I like green shit more than diarrhea but...

    I'd rather have nothing to do with a sewage dump at all.

  • Michael Ejercito||

    You're right rac, I like green shit more than diarrhea but...

    I'd rather have nothing to do with a sewage dump at all.


    Sometimes we have to go through a sewage dump, like when we chose to back Stalin over Hitler.

  • Mo||

    If you don't control your borders, airspace or ports, you are not an independent country.

  • Hate Potion Number Nine||

    Unless you need cheap Mexican labor. Then you are a fascist hellhole for controlling your borders.

  • ||

    and extended those protections to EVERYONE in the territories they control

    You do realize there is not one single Israeli, civilian, military, or law enforcement, in Gaza, right? Israel has no control over Gaza, and nothing it could say or do with regards to human rights would make any difference within Gaza*?

    *Barring, of course, Israeli response to war crimes and armed aggression originating in Gaza, when a very different standard of "human rights" applies.

  • DJF||

    If Israel claims no control over Gaza then how can they claim control over Gaza waters and over imports and exports of Gaza. This is the basic problem in Gaza, Israel wants to control it without taking on the responsibly of control.

  • ||

    Gaza is controlled by an organized belligerent with which Israel is at war. In case you haven't noticed.

  • jtuf||

    + 1

  • highnumber||

    This "+1" crap is as lame as that "Good Morning, Reason" garbage.

    Naw, it's +10000000 lamer.

  • Fluffy||

    No, it isn't.

    Israel likes to pretend that the Palestinians have no state and that Gaza is not part of any state.

    We are entitled to take them at their word.

  • pmains||

    And the Gazans deny that Israel has a state. Israel is willing to work with Gaza to help them to achieve statehood. They pulled out, built a wall, said, "hey you guys, have elections and govern yourselves." 5 years on, Gazans are struggling with that.

    What are the Israelis supposed to do exactly? Send counselors to demonstrate how to go to work in the morning and not contemplate mass murder?

  • DJF||

    So Israel is at war with Gaza and therefore the defenders of Gaza are not terrorists?

  • Michael Ejercito||

    So Israel is at war with Gaza and therefore the defenders of Gaza are not terrorists?


    No, they are allies of terrorists.

  • ||

    And this kind of glibness is why you find few libertarians among civil engineers.

    And just what the fuck is that supposed to mean? Civil engineers are totalitarians who hate the idea that the little people won't buy in to their grandiose megaprojects?

  • Warty||

    I thought he was saying that libertarians are smart enough to go into the real engineering disciplines.

  • Contemplationist||

    Yes international law allows boarding and inspection of ships that are meant to break a blockade. Even without a blockade, navies routinely board and inspect ships on their coasts. The navy personnel did not come in with guns blazing. They were stabbed, and almost killed.

    They could deliver the aid here if thats what they wanted to do, as opposed to end the blockade.

  • jtuf||

    + 1

  • Fluffy||

    It only allows such boardings in the case of blockades imposed by one state on another state.

    And the ship was not on Israel's coast and was in international waters.

  • Contemplationist||

    Few of the 'flotilla' people dreamt of martyrdom.

    Weapons found on flotilla

    The dickless weasels in the "international community" have made a sport of treating Israel unlike any other nation ever.
    Of course Israel's actions can be criminal. It is a STATE after all, with a GOVERNMENT. Governments routinely do stupid and evil things. From an anarchist perspective you can and should condemn Israel. But from a so-called "realist" or even comparative state perspective, israel is far far better than even the US or France would have been. Hell, our drug war raids are far worse than this flotilla crap.

    Yes, Israel has done lots of stupid shit, but the intelligent thing to do when looking at the conflict is to NEVER EVER take Lefty and Jihadi's words without verification.

  • jtuf||

    + 1

  • Fluffy||

    Are you fucking kidding me?

    Knives and crowbars?

    Are you seriously asserting that any ship on which there is a knife or a crowbar is an armed ship, or carrying arms?

    That's awesome, because you just transformed every Israeli flagged ship into an arms vessel. That means the Palestinians are now entitled to sink every last one of them with all hands.

  • pmains||

    Some of those "knives" look more like machetes to me.

  • ||

    Israel has no control over Gaza

    O RLY

  • ||

    O RLY. Israel controls movements in its border with Gaza, and in the coast. But has no control over Gaza.

  • jtuf||

    + 1

  • hmm||

    All legal, maritime, and ideological arguments aside. If there are guys dropping out of a helicopter with guns and you feel a need to attack them with pipes, you should expect significant losses. I'm not saying you should capitulate, just that whacking a dude with an M16 or FN SCAR with a metal pipe or whacking his buddy with a metal pipe is a good way to get shot and should be expected. After all if you were hitting me I'd shoot your ass, and expect you to do the same.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Despite everything, I concur. Had they just acted disobediantly instead of violently, they might have had some sort of vague moral high ground.

  • hmm||

    In the information age when protesting aggression the commonly believed moral highground goes a long way.

    Israel messed up in not using an overwhelming show of force if they were going to do it. That isn't to say I condone the action, but if you are going to do it, you have to do it. By halfassing such things you run the risk of more lives lost and endanger your men and those you are trying to subjugate.

  • ||

    But a man in that profession cannot help but giggle and move on when he reads the usual glib comments from libertarians about how too much money is going to this or that project.

    "Giggle and move on."

    If only.

  • ||

    Lovely article. "Israel is wrong because Israel was wrong because Israel was wrong" ad nauseam. Even after admitting the "peace" flotilla was just a ploy to provoke an Israeli reaction, he places the blame on Israel for taking action when given no better choice. It also doesn't seem to matter to him that the "peace" flotilla was manned in part by groups with known terrorist connections or that there were chants of violently anti-Israel nature.

    There's plenty of truth in the article, but half of the whole truth is worse than a total lie.

  • RyanXXX||

    "So likewise, a passionate attachment of one nation for another produces a variety of evils. Sympathy for the favorite nation, facilitating the illusion of an imaginary common interest in cases where no real common interest exists, and infusing into one the enmities of the other, betrays the former into a participation in the quarrels and wars of the latter without adequate inducement or justification."

    "Against the insidious wiles of foreign influence (I conjure you to believe me, fellow-citizens) the jealousy of a free people ought to be constantly awake, since history and experience prove that foreign influence is one of the most baneful foes of republican government."

    -From that anti-semite, George Washington

    "Entangling alliance with none."

    -From that terrorist-lover, Thomas Jefferson

  • ||

    There is only one issue of relevance in this event: the location of the flotilla at the time of the attack. It was in international waters. Israel had no jurisdiction whatsoever. Their paranoia justifies nothing. As for the so-called "libertarians" here rationalizing this state-sponsored murder and theft -- I suggest you pack up your bags and head to Haifa if you are so enamored of a theocratic state. Otherwise, tear up that other passport and get on board with being an American who respects the right of individuals to life, liberty and property no matter which god you pray to.

  • دردشة||

    thanks

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