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So what is the real goal of these “human rights activists”? Here an old adage can come to our aid: “Tell me who your friends are and I’ll tell you who you are.” Let’s see with whom these so-called activists are sailing.
The key organizer of flotilla 2, Mohammed Sawalha, has ties with Hamas. Two other members of the flotilla’s “peace activists,” Amin Abu Rashad and Mohammad Hannoun, are known Hamas members. The IHH, the primary organization supporting the flotilla before it disassociated itself from the endeavor, is a known Muslim terrorist organization, and its leader, Bulent Yildirim, has well-known terrorist affiliations. Another leading organizer of flotilla 2 is the International Solidarity Movement (ISM) which supports, aids and abets Hamas and other Palestinian terrorist groups. The Free Palestine Movement, founded by ISM activists, supports the 2011 flotilla, promoting the claim that the flotilla is a non-violent effort with humanitarian goals. Greta Berlin, one of the flotilla participants, is a cheerful-looking 68-year-old American who is a member of the ISM and an energetic, vocal supporter of Hamas. Huwaida Arraf and Adam Shapiro, long-time pro-Palestinian activists who support Arab terrorism against Israel, are also among the organizers of the flotilla.
We need to recall that Hamas is a self-declared terrorist organization whose founding document unabashedly avows that its ultimate goal is the destruction of Israel and the genocide of all Jews worldwide. So it is clear that the leaders and members and armed terrorists who carry out Hamas’ attacks, those who offer financial support, those who offer political and moral justification, and those who misrepresent Hamas as a humanitarian organization struggling courageously against an oppressive occupation, are all active participants in Hamas’ heinous endeavor. They want to engage in war against Israel.
And the same is true of flotilla 2’s “human rights activists:” Based on the company they keep, it is clear that they are passive participants, but participants nonetheless. By joining the terrorists and terrorist supporters in the flotilla, they are engaging both in an act of war against Israel and in political street theatre at its worst. By striking a political and PR blow against Israel, they are aiding and abetting one of our century’s most vicious and ruthless terrorist organizations. By setting sail with those who support mass murder and genocide, they have wittingly or unwittingly joined the ranks of the 21st century’s avatar of Hitler’s little helpers.
And speaking of active participation, it is important to note that the International Committee of the Red Cross (ICRC) stood staunchly on the side of Hamas for decades, until this year. The ICRC has a long history of whitewashing Hamas terrorism and condemning Israel for its restrained defensive actions against terror attacks. In 2010 the ICRC supported flotilla 1, condemning Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip because, they asserted, it choked off economic development, caused unemployment, poverty and warfare, and punished the entire civilian population for acts for which they bear no responsibility. In the ICRC’s judgment, Israel’s blockade constituted collective punishment in clear violation of international humanitarian law, and its illegal closure of the Gaza Strip should be ended.
For more than two decades the world’s paragon of human rights shamelessly underwrote a sizable portion of the Gaza Strip’s economy with humanitarian aid, passively complicit as Hamas operatives confiscated much of that aid and sold it to the impoverished population that should have received it at no cost. As noted above, only in 2009 did the ICRC finally go public with the scandal of its complicity in humanitarian aid used to fund genocidal terrorism. The ICRC’s support for Hamas constitutes perhaps one of the world’s most galactic cases of hypocrisy.
For five years, the ICRC stood silently by as the Hamas captors of Israeli soldier Gilad Shalit held him in isolation, contrary to international law. For the last two years, there has not even been any sign that Shalit is still alive. When the ICRC finally issued a statement on June 23, 2011, requesting that Hamas enable Shalit to contact his family, scores of Gazan Arabs assaulted the Red Cross offices in Gaza City, pelting the building with eggs, destroying a security guard cabin, and smashing the windows with stones. Hamas made no reply to the Red Cross request. A similarly violent demonstration, replete with eggs, rocks and shoes, occurred six months earlier when the French foreign minister made the mistake of expressing sympathy for Shalit, an Israeli-French dual national, during her visit to the Gaza Strip; and this despite the fact that she had made an impassioned plea for Israel to end its blockade of the impoverished Palestinian territory. The foreign minister, although under heavy guard, was almost hit by a shoe.
So one might ask the question, why does Israel enable the ICRC to do its “humanitarian work” in the Gaza Strip, knowing full well that not only does much of this work actually aid and abet and support Hamas in its genocidal goals, but also that the ICRC for years did nothing about its other humanitarian obligation in the Gaza Strip, namely, ensuring humane treatment for the one lone Israeli POW. And after the ICRC finally made one flaccid belated attempt on behalf of Shalit, it quietly accepted Hamas’ rebuff?
Perhaps it is not in Israel’s best interest to allow the Red Cross into the Gaza Strip; or perhaps the ICRC should consider some action to protest Hamas’ refusal to abide by international laws regarding POWs, not to mention attacking Red Cross offices with stones and eggs.
The evidence for the absence of crisis in the Gaza Strip is overwhelming. UN observers have stated bluntly that there is no lack of food, medicine or other humanitarian needs in the Gaza Strip, although some building materials are in short supply. The Palestinian Authority agrees. This reality is gradually making its way into mainstream media (see here, here, here), as some journalists discover Olympic-sized swimming pools and gourmet restaurants, as well as grocery stores proffering Israeli yogurt and Cocoa Puffs and well-stocked pharmacies in the impoverished Gaza Strip.
The most comprehensive statistics come from a recent JCPA summary, with documented supplies entering the Gaza Strip from Israel:
Health: 4,883 tons of medical equipment and medicines entered Gaza in 2009 in coordination with the Palestinian Authority and international agencies:
Electricity: Israel continued to supply electricity to Gaza from its power plant in Ashkelon. In addition, 41 truckloads of equipment were transferred for the maintenance of the electrical system in Gaza. Between April and October 2009, Siemens carried out maintenance work on the power system in Gaza, to which more than 100 million liters of diesel fuel were delivered for its operation.
Communications: 45 truckloads of communication equipment were sent to Gaza at the request of the Palestinian Authority.
Water and sewage: 95 truckloads of equipment for water and sewage systems, as well as 3,720 tons of chloride for water purification, were transferred during 2009.
The private sector: 77 percent of the contents of trucks sent into Gaza in 2009 were for the private sector. 257 Palestinian businessmen exited Gaza to Israel, the West Bank, and abroad. 10,871 head of cattle were transferred to Gaza, mainly for the Ramadan and Eid al-Adha holidays. In preparation for winter, 3,607 tons of glass for windows was transferred to Gaza.
Money: Over NIS 1.1 billion (approximately $300 million) was transferred to Gaza in 2009 to fund salaries and the activities of international organizations. In addition, NIS 40 million (approximately $10 million) in worn banknotes were replaced.
Humanitarian aid: 141,390 tons of humanitarian aid were transferred by the international community through Israel, including 115,043 tons of food and 2,990 tons of medicines and medical equipment.
UNRWA: 3,282,000 liters of fuel and diesel were transferred for use by UNRWA. In addition, special equipment for summer camps, including swimming pools, ice cream machines, musical instruments, and sports equipment were transferred to UNRWA.
Agricultural export: The export of flowers and strawberries was approved as part of a joint project with the government of the Netherlands. Since the beginning of the project, more than 7 million flowers and 54 tons of strawberries were exported.
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