By Salim Nazzal & Kate Howarth
05 June, 2010
After the flotilla massacre,
the Freedom of Palestine
has become a human responsibility
The massacre on board the ‘Mavi Marmara’ in international territorial water in the early hours of June 1, 2010 changed the face of the conflict from an Arab Israeli conflict to a conflict between Israel and the rest of humanity.
Most of the world already held this feeling towards the untenable situation held by the Gazans, ignored not only by the West but also most of the Arab-turned-Zionist world.This betrayal by the Muslim Ummah was also used against the Palestinians. “They are so low that not even other Muslims will help them!” I heard so many times as justification for their eradication from Palestine.
Notwithstanding the predictable stance of the United States of America, and their continued bias support for Israel, regardless of what the facts are, the rest of the world is outraged by the cold blooded murder of peaceful humanitarian activists’ some 90 miles from the coast of Gaza last week, which Israel claims to have been in self-defense.
Live videos captured at the time of the attack show Israel soldiers landing from a helicopter, while Israel gunboats encircled the ship. People onboard the 'Mavi Marmara' were woken from their sleep by the sound of gunfire.
“The Middle East is boiling these days”. These are the words repeated across the Arab media in the aftermath, of what can only be described as the cold blooded killing of unarmed civilians, at the hands of the heavily armed Israeli soldiers.
As the stories from the 600 surviving witnesses to the attack filter through the international media, the voices of condemnation of Israel grow louder.
“I was shocked to see a regular army officer pointing a pistol to the head of a one year old child” a woman from the Algerian delegation said, to an Al Jazeera TV journalist, as she recalled the horror of the attack.
Blah. These Talmudists call Arab children “devils” because their sweet demeanor is a front for the evil of Islam. Also the child will grow up to be an enemy. Kill it now and save yourself the trouble later.
”The Israeli soldiers do not look like regular soldiers but rather pirates with uniform”. Another witness on board is reported to have said.
The consistency of evidence from the many eyewitnesses to the fatal shooting of 19 year old American citizen, Furkan Dogan, cannot be ignored when it is said that an Israeli soldier raised his weapon, and shot Dogan twice in the head. Other survivors said that the Israeli soldiers threw two wounded peace activists into the sea.
Actually, Dogan was shot in the belly and then held down by the feet of several men and four bullets fired point blank into his skull. In other words, he was executed.
In Istanbul, thousands of protesters called for revenge for the death of the 9 Turkish nationals murdered by the Israeli soldiers.
There have been unconfirmed reports that the Turkish Navy will accompany the next flotilla sending much needed aid to the people of Gaza, who have been suffering inhumane blockades by Israel for over three years.
This would demonstrate that Turkey
will not be intimidated by Israel
and the aid for the people of Gaza will continue.
At the very least Turkey, Ireland and Greece, all of whom flew flags on the free Gaza flotilla, and all those on board, have shown Israel that they will defy all attempts to stop aid reaching Gaza.
Turkey, a member of the NATO, and Israel has always been considered as the forefront for the western forces in the region. However, there are strong indicators that the West is growing weary of the repeated provocation of Israel and their flagrant disregard for human rights and international law.
“Enough is enough,” said a Norwegian politician in the huge demonstration which took place in Oslo to protest the Israeli assault on the peaceful activist. Another speaker said that the question of the freedom of Palestine has become a question that engages humanity. Other speakers demanded an international firmer stand against the Israeli repeated crimes.
Although the response from some leaders, particularly from the USA, has left people astounded, there have been protests across most European countries, the Middle East, USA, Canada, and in far away Australia, which indicates the ground swell of opposition against Israel. The world community is demanding that Israel be held accountable for this crime and that the blockade against Gaza be lifted to allow the flow of essential supplies to reach the people.
Support for Turkey, the flag ship of the flotilla attacked by Israel troops, has been resounding not only in the Middle East, but around the world.
Turkish flags are flying all over the Middle East and Turkish leader, Rejab Erdogan is today the most popular leader in the Arab world.
In the absence of other strong leadership, and the failure of many Arab leaders to take the initiative to challenge Israel, it is believed by many astute observers that the door is open for Iran and Turkey to fill the void.
The creation of a strong Arab/ Turkish /Persian alliance in the region standing united against Israel’s unfettered abuse of human rights, and continued threat to maintaining world security, will move the region closer to a peaceful resolution for the Palestinian/Israeli conflict.
Some big questions remain with regard to the new developments which might occur in the region in the future regarding the developing of the conflict with the Zionist state. It is complex and will take time to unfold and develop. One thing is sure, that after this massacre by Israel the Middle East is not be the same.
The solidarity with Palestine has never been as strong as these days.
Although much remains uncertain as to the detail,
the direction of humanity is clear.
The Zionist regime of Israel must be stopped.
As the next humanitarian ship, the MV Rachel Corrie, heads toward Gaza, the world remember the young American woman, Rachel Corrie, whose name the boat bears, murdered in cold blood when she tried to prevent an Israeli soldier demolishing the home of a Palestinian doctor and his family in 2003.
Corrie was run over by the bulldozer, which backed-up and ran her over again snapping her back in two. The Israeli’s claimed that this was an unfortunate accident. Seventeen eyewitnesses at the scene said otherwise.
The spokesperson on board the MV Rachel Corrie, said that the humanitarian activists are determined to break the three year long Israeli siege that has brought misery and suffering effecting mostly children, the sick and the aged population of Gaza.
Out of the tragedy of this week, that left many dead at the hands of Israel, the resolve of the Palestinians and those who support Palestine is stronger than ever.
We begin a new chapter in the occupation of Palestine as the International community shines an uncomfortable spotlight on Israel and stand in solidarity against the Zionist terror campaigns.
The authors of this article are from two oppressed nations. One is historian and the son of a Palestinian family, expelled from Palestine by Zionists. The other an Aboriginal Australian. Writer and activist, whose own history is a mirrored image of the atrocities and suffering inflicted on the Palestinian people, and for whom she has a great empathy for their struggle for justice