Sign up now to receive our regular news briefs.

Following the Flotilla on Twitter

July 4, 2011 10:38 am 0 comments

Men gather at a new Gaza theme park. Photo: Ahmed El Quarra.

For about a week now I have been obsessively following the latest news on the Gaza-bound flotilla via my twitter account (see @jewofzion).  Everything one could possibly want to know about this so-called humanitarian mission to Gaza can be found using hash tags – flotilla, flotilla2 or other similar combinations. Not only have I been following the exchange of information between those who support the flotilla and those that oppose it, but I have been actively contributing my two cents to the debate as well.

While it seems on the surface that the pro-flotilla voices are louder in making their case heard, as Herb Keinon pointed out in the July 4th, Jerusalem Post, this year’s spectacle as of this writing is a victory for Israel. As he notes, the warming of ties between Greece and Israel over the past year (most likely because of the cooling in ties between Israel and Turkey, Greece’s long time foe), has all but put the kibosh on flotilla organizer’s efforts to sail from Greek ports towards Gaza. While some vessels might eventually succeed in leaving port and heading for Gaza, reports indicate that only a few hundred so-called activists remain committed to their mission.

But the real question remains, what is the true goal of these apparently saintly European protestors? While claiming an altruistic desire to deliver ‘much needed’ humanitarian supplies to Gaza’s needy, the truth is becoming more and more clear: this flotilla like the one before it has nothing to do with helping the people of Gaza, but is a means to end Israel’s legitimate and legal blockade of the Hamas-controlled landmass while creating an anti-Israel propagandist media stunt, which in turn will strengthen the incumbent regime.

Just yesterday (July 3) one of the flotilla organizers blundered by revealing her group’s true intentions. In reference to a Greek proposal offering to assist in delivering whatever humanitarian goods are on board (the proposal was later rejected by organizers), as long as the ships didn’t set sail, Ewa Jasiewicz said, “It is possible that this is under consideration but…that is not considered breaking the siege…” “We want to break the siege and the flotilla is not about expanding the drip of humanitarian aid to Gaza.”

In other words, Jasiewicz was clear that their mission is not about delivering humanitarian aid. And by the way while she calls aid to Gaza a “drip,” according to the IDF spokesman’s office, Israel transfers over 6,000 tons of goods and materials to Gaza DAILY. That’s double the amount estimated to be on board the flotilla. Then again, if this year’s shipment is similar to last year’s boats full of expired medicine, is that 3,000 tons worth anything at all?

So while the flotilla twitter feeds are written with passion, both for and against, there are several relevant questions that those who support the flotillas have failed to answer, at least when I’ve asked repeatedly. What do the Arabs in Gaza want?  Are they in favor of your flotillas, or are you just rocking the boat (excuse the pun)?

Those are questions that I have asked publicly to the residents of Gaza on Twitter, and I have yet to get a response. Perhaps those in Gaza are afraid to respond since let’s remember they do live under the terrorist Hamas regime. But it seems that their silence is deafening. In other words, the fact that you don’t hear Gazans jumping up and down encouraging the flotillas proves that they would prefer that they don’t show up.

To be fair, I did see about 30 children in Gaza photographed on the beach showing their support for the ships, but this is way too obviously a Hamas publicity stunt to be taken seriously.

I truly believe that the residents of Gaza are hoping that the flotillas don’t arrive. While life under Hamas rule is far from perfect, as this point in time with malls and water parks opening up, stores packed with food (did you know you can get three different kinds of chicken in Gaza? Israeli, Egyptian or local?) and many new infrastructure projects in the works (Israel also allows concrete to be imported for authorized building projects, something the main stream media and of course the flotilla organizers, omit), why risk a change to the status quo?

One day I fear that Hamas will decide to start launching rockets at Israel again, when it best suits their needs, and things might change for Gaza’s folks. Things tend to worsen, when your elected officials decide to use you, their constituents, as human shields, but until that happens, it’s best for everyone if the Flotilla organizers simply jump ship.

Leave a Reply

Please note: comments may be published in the Algemeiner print edition.


Current day month ye@r *

More...

  • Blogs Book Reviews Can ‘Islamic Reformation’ Work? (REVIEW)

    Can ‘Islamic Reformation’ Work? (REVIEW)

    It is cocktail hour on an April afternoon in 2004. The sun is hot on Amsterdam’s canals, and I am sitting at Café den Leeuw on the Herengracht with Ayaan Hirsi Ali. Hirsi Ali is still a member of the Dutch Parliament, and we talk about Islam. Specifically, we talk about the concept of “moderate Islam,” or what she calls “liberal Islam.” And she has one word for it. “It’s absurd,” she says. “It’s complete nonsense. There is no ‘liberal […]

    Read more →
  • Food Jewish Identity A Look at the Vilna Vegetarian Cookbook (REVIEW)

    A Look at the Vilna Vegetarian Cookbook (REVIEW)

    Everybody knows that cooking varies from country to country. There are Italian restaurants, Chinese restaurants, etc. We associate different styles of cuisine with different languages. Do we also think of the association of different cuisines with different dialects? We should, because cooking also varies from region to region. Litvaks and Galitsyaners have their own traditions of preparing gefilte fish. Marvin I. Herzog, in his book The Yiddish Language in Northern Poland: Its Geography and History (Indiana University, Bloomington, and Mouton & Co., The […]

    Read more →
  • Relationships US & Canada Analysis: Jewish Women Less Likely Than Catholics to Take Husband’s Name

    Analysis: Jewish Women Less Likely Than Catholics to Take Husband’s Name

    An analysis of New York Times wedding announcements showed that women married in Jewish ceremonies were less likely to take their husband’s last names than those married in Roman Catholic ceremonies, the Times reported on Saturday. The largest gap between the two groups was in 1995 when 66 percent of Catholic women took their husband’s names and 33 percent of Jewish women did the same. Nearly half of the women featured in the publication’s wedding pages since 1985 took their husband’s name after marriage, while about […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture Blogs Jerry Lewis, Legendary Jewish Comic and Humanitarian, Stays Relevant at 89

    Jerry Lewis, Legendary Jewish Comic and Humanitarian, Stays Relevant at 89

    JNS.org – Through appreciation of both his comedy and humanitarian work, legendary Jewish entertainer Jerry Lewis is staying relevant at age 89. The only comic to ever be nominated for a Nobel Peace Prize, Lewis added another award to his trophy case in April, when he received the 2015 Distinguished Service Award from the National Association of Broadcasters (NAB). Gordon Smith, NAB’s president and CEO, said the organization was “honored to recognize not only [Lewis’s] comedic innovation, but also his remarkable […]

    Read more →
  • Europe Sports Israeli Gymnasts Win Bronze, Silver Medals at 2015 European Games in Baku

    Israeli Gymnasts Win Bronze, Silver Medals at 2015 European Games in Baku

    Israeli athletes marked a successful day on Sunday, as gymnasts won multiple bronze and silver medals in the 2015 European Games in Baku. The Gymnastics team won two silver medals and one bronze in group events, while Neta Rivkin, an Israeli Olympic gymnast, won bronze for the Solo Hoops event. Sunday’s gymnastics wins follow Sergey Richter’s bronze on June 16 for the Men’s 10 meter air-rifle, and Ilana Kratysh’s silver for women’s freestyle wrestling. The 2015 European Games in Baku are […]

    Read more →
  • Theater Report Highlights Success of Russian-Jewish-American Ballroom Dancers

    Report Highlights Success of Russian-Jewish-American Ballroom Dancers

    Russian-American Jews are some of the most successful ballroom dancing competitors in the U.S., South Dakota Public Broadcasting (SDPB) Radio reported on Thursday. Jonathan Sarna, a professor of Jewish history at Brandeis University, said their success can be traced back to Jewish discrimination in the former Soviet Union. Because of the prejudice they faced, Russian Jews had to perform better than their peers in every field, including dancing, in order to have a chance of getting ahead. “They knew that if they […]

    Read more →
  • Arts and Culture US & Canada Israeli Dancer With Shofar, Prayer Shawl Wows ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ Judges (VIDEO)

    Israeli Dancer With Shofar, Prayer Shawl Wows ‘So You Think You Can Dance’ Judges (VIDEO)

    An Israeli dancer made use of Jewish props in an extraordinary routine that left judges amazed when he auditioned for season 12 of TV dance competition So You Think You Can Dance on Monday. At first, the panel of judges appeared confused when Asaf Goren, 23, began his audition in Los Angeles with a tallit (prayer shawl) over his head and the blowing of a shofar, which he explained “opens the sky” for people’s prayers. However, as soon as he started his “Hebrew breaking” performance, […]

    Read more →
  • Sports US & Canada Jewish Hoops Fairytale Falls Short as David Blatt’s Cavaliers Drop Game 6

    Jewish Hoops Fairytale Falls Short as David Blatt’s Cavaliers Drop Game 6

    JNS.org – A fairytale ending to Jewish basketball coach David Blatt’s first season in the National Basketball Association (NBA) was not meant to be, as the Blatt-led Cleveland Cavaliers on Tuesday night dropped Game 6 of the NBA Finals to the Golden State Warriors, 105-97, to lose the best-of-seven series 4-2. Blatt, who just last year coached Israel’s Maccabi Tel Aviv franchise to a European basketball championship, failed to finish a second straight hoops season on top. But after the Cavaliers began the NBA […]

    Read more →