Thursday, June 3, 2010

Ridley: All At Sea, Olbermann/Ambassador Peck, Friday protest

I saw this last night. It's not on this replay, but as part of Keith's
prior 'stay tuned', he said Edward Peck worked for the Carter,
Reagan and Bush Sr. administrations. Honest, measured and
powerful comments about his own experience and while watching
video of invasion of one of the three large ships. Not for children.

From: Karen Pomer:


Keith Olbermann: Gaza Flotilla Fallout - 06/02/10

June 02, 2010 - Keith Olbermann Interview With Former Chief Of Mission To
Iraq Edward Peck: Gaza Flotilla Fallout - 06/02/10


All At Sea

By Yvonne Ridley
"Information Clearing House": June 01, 2010

-I wonder how many of you remember the hijacking of the Italian
cruise ship the Achille Lauro way back in October 1985?

Four members of the Palestine Liberation Front took control of the liner off
Egypt as she was sailing from Alexandria to Port Said.

It was a bungled operation in which the hijackers killed disabled
Jewish-American passenger Leon Klinghoffer and then threw his body

The incident created headlines around the world and polarized people over
the Palestinian cause.

It also prompted the law makers to create new legislation making it an
international crime for anyone to take a ship by force.

And this is the reason for the brief history lesson - under article 3 of the
Rome Convention for the Suppression of Unlawful Acts against the Safety of
Maritime Navigation of 1988, it is an international crime for any person to
seize or exercise control over a ship by force, and also a crime to injure
or kill any person in the process.

The treaty necessarily adopts a strict approach. One cannot attack a ship
and then claim self-defence if the people on board resist the unlawful use
of violence.

In other words, according to international law, the actions of the Israeli
military were beyond the law and those involved should be treated no
differently than, say, the Somali pirates who are also in the habit of
boarding ships by force.

Any rights to self defence in such dramatic circumstances rests purely with
the passengers and crew on board. Under international maritime law you are
legally entitled to resist unlawful capture, abduction and detention.

What those on board the Freedom Flotilla did was perfectly legal. I believe
they acted with great courage in the face of heavily armed IDF commandos,
while others might have thought their actions reckless.

Whatever your view, a number paid the ultimate price for their international
right to resist.

Israel now stands virtually alone having exposed itself as a pariah state.

I wrote an article last year calling them the Pirates of the Mediterranean
after they had illegally boarded other aid ships, kidnapping crew and

Now I want you to ask yourself this question . if a group of Somali pirates
had forced their way onto half a dozen humanitarian aid ships from the West,
slaughtering around nine or 10 people and injuring scores more what do you
think the international reaction would have been?

Let me tell you. A NATO task force would by now be steaming towards the Horn
of Africa accompanied by a couple of drones and various members of the press
to record the occasion. (On a point of interest the Achille Lauro sank in
the Indian Ocean off the coast of Somalia in 1994.)

So why is Israel allowed to get away with murder? In a pre-meditated act the
Zionist State showed once again its total disregard for human life - and
international law.

There were pensioners, women and children on board those ships which were
carrying bags of cement, electric wheelchairs, toys, medicines and water
purifiers for Gaza's people.

Realizing Israel had shot itself in the foot, the vile state's leader
Binyamin Netanyahu then started shooting from the lip.

He asked us to believe that his troops were acting in self-defence. And
then, 24 hours later, given time to come up with more lies he told the world
that the soldiers were armed with paintballs and had not expected to use
their weapons. Not content with insulting our intelligence he said his nice,
cuddly IDF folk had only boarded the boats to carry out an inspection and

Then backing him up was Mark Regev, the Zionist State's political Pinocchio.
He reckons these evil-doers on board the boats grabbed the IDF's real guns
and used them to fire on the soldiers.

These are the same soldiers that come from an elite, highly trained, crack
squad . hmm Mr Regev, if that's the case why would you send in the A-Team if
they were just going to do an inventory?

And if they were such a hot squad how did a bunch of civilians manage to
overpower them and give them a good slap?

Either Israeli soldiers fight like a bunch of old women - which Hizb'Allah
says they do - or they intended to massacre those on board to make sure that
no other peace activists get involved in trying to help the Palestinian
people of Gaza.

Well if that was the aim then it has failed. As I write this some heroic
friends of mine from the Free Gaza Movement are bound for Gaza now onboard
the appropriately named ship Rachel Corrie.
In our thousands in our millions . today we are all Palestinians.

Journalist Yvonne Ridley is the European President of the International
Muslim Womens Union, and a committed peace activist who was on the first
boat to break the siege of Gaza in 2008.


Los Angeles Regional Protest
Against Israeli Massacre of Gaza Aid Flotilla
End the Siege of Gaza! Stop U.S. Aid to Israel!


Israeli Consulate
6380 Wilshire Blvd, Los Angeles
(Crescent Heights & San Vicente)
Map Metro & Bus:

Endorse the June 4 Protest in Los Angeles

The ANSWER Coalition, Al-Awda, Free Palestine Alliance, Palestinian American
Women's Association and many others, are co-sponsoring a mass protest in Los
Angeles this Friday, June 4, to denounce the Israeli military massacre of
activists on the Gaza freedom flotilla.

At least 9 were killed by Israel, with dozens injured, brutally beaten and
illegally interrogated. After a major LA protest on Monday and other actions
throughout the week, let's make Friday's protest the biggest outpouring yet.
We encourage people to bring signs, banners, Palestinian flags to show your
support for the Palestinian people and their struggle for

In an act of piracy and a blatant violation of international law, the
Israeli government committed a cold-blooded massacre on the high seas
against a group of courageous individuals whose only crime was to extend a
hand of solidarity to the besieged and blockaded people in Gaza.

The Gaza aid flotilla is made up of ships carrying 750 people and bringing
medical, construction and school supplies to besieged Palestinians in Gaza.
It was illegally attacked in international waters by 14 Israeli ships.
Heavily armed Israeli commandos dropped onto the ships from helicopters and
opened fire on the activists.

Gaza has been blockaded by Israel since 2007 with full backing by the U.S.
government. The blockade is a brutal form of collective punishment aimed at
strangling the Palestinian people. Since coming to office, the Obama
administration has continued the enormous funding to Israel allowing the
continued siege of Gaza, the occupation and expansion of Israeli settlements
in the West Bank, and Israel's non-stop war against all of the Palestinian
people. President Obama has promised at least $30 billion in military aid to
Israel over the next 10 years.

Endorse the June 4 Protest in Los Angeles

Come out to these protests to condemn this outrageous massacre and call for
an immediate end of the siege of Gaza.

For more info call 213-251-1025 or email

A.N.S.W.E.R. Coalition
Act Now to Stop War and End Racism
137 N. Virgil Avenue, #201
Los Angeles, CA 90004
Get involved in ANSWER's work today!

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