Under Attack by Israel
31st May 2010
Under darkness of night, Israeli commandoes dropped from a helicopter
onto the Turkish passenger ship, Mavi Marmara, and began to shoot the
moment their feet hit the deck. They fired directly into the crowd of
civilians asleep. According to the live video from the ship, two have
been killed, and 31 injured. has just confirmed the numbers. Latest reports put the death
toll at 19 with dozens injured.
Streaming video shows the Israeli soldiers shooting at civilians, and
our last SPOT beacon said, “HELP, we are being contacted by the
We know nothing about the other five boats. Israel says they are taking
over the boats.
The coalition of Free Gaza Movement (FG), European Campaign to End the
Siege of Gaza (ECESG), Insani Yardim Vakfi (IHH), the Perdana Global Peace
Organisation, Ship to Gaza Greece, Ship to Gaza Sweden, and the International
Committee to Lift the Siege on Gaza appeal to the international community
to demand that Israel stop their brutal attack on civilians delivering
vitally needed aid to the imprisoned Palestinians of Gaza and permit the
ships to continue on their way.
The attack has happened in international waters, 75 miles off the coast
of Israel, in direct violation of international law.
The Gaza Strip is one of the most densely populated places on Earth.
A 25-mile-long narrow coastal plain wedged between Israel and Egypt, Gaza
is home to 1.5 million Palestinians, over half of them children. Most
of its population are refugees or their descendants, driven out of Israel
during its founding in 1948. Surrounded by 40-foot high walls of iron
and steel, Gaza has only 3 points of entry or exit: the Erez border crossing
with Israel, the Rafah crossing with Egypt, and the sea.
Israel has occupied Gaza since 1967, maintaining complete control over
Gaza's air space and territorial waters, imports and exports, and travel
into or out of the territory. Since January 2006, Israel has subjected
the Gaza Strip to an increasingly severe blockade, restricting Gaza's
ability to import fuel, spare parts, and other necessary materials. Compared
to December 2005, less than 20 percent of the supplies needed for normal
trade are allowed into Gaza by Israel, and foreign investment has fallen
off by over 95 percent. As a result, the economy has completely collapsed.
Most of Gaza's industrial plants have been forced to close, casing steep
increases in unemployment, poverty and childhood malnutrition rates.
The siege has led to massive shortages that have rippled through the
economy and society. Shortages in fuel have caused gasoline prices to
spiral out of control, leading to sustained power cuts. Hospitals, dependent
on diesel-powered generators, regularly lose power for several hours a
day. Unable to operate irrigation pumps, farmers experience significant
loss of crops. Most family homes have running water for less than six
hours a day, and almost a third of homes have no running water at all.
Sewage treatment centers no longer function properly. Millions of liters
of raw sewage have been pumped into heavily populated neighborhoods, and
tens-of-billions of liters of untreated and only partially treated sewage
have been released into the Mediterranean. Gaza's fishermen state that
the sewage has killed off most of the sea life in the immediate vicinity.
In December 2008, Israel broke a ceasefire with Gaza and began a three
week campaign of bombings, home invasions, and general destruction. During
this massacre, homes, schools, mosques, and UN centers were all attacked
by Israel. Thirteen Israelis, including 4 Israeli civilians, lost their
lives, while over 1,300 Palestinian men, women, and children were slaughtered.
Since the end of the massacre it has become harder than ever to bring
in humanitarian relief, reconstruction aid, or developmental supplies.
The siege continues, and the humanitarian condition of the one and a
half million human beings illegally incarcerated in Gaza is now at its
worst point in the last forty years of Israeli occupation.
Liverpool demonstration outside BBC
June 1st 2010
A demonstration numbering over 250 people was held this evening outside
the offices of BBC Radio Merseyside. It was organised by Liverpool Friends
of Palestine together with Merseyside Stop the War Coalition with the
sponsorship of Merseyside CND and Liverpool Trades Council.
Speakers denounced the recent kidnap of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla and
the senseless killing of crew members in a full-scale assault that took
place yesterday morning.
A letter was handed in calling on Radio Merseyside and BBC North West
to redress the bias of BBC reporting and to incorporate more Middle East-sourced
media into their reporting.
People were urged to join a bus to Saturday's national demonstration
in London (bus to leave Hardman Street 7am Saturday)