Wednesday, June 29, 2011

To Flotilla's Israel-Demonizers: You Like Lawfare? We'll Give You Lawfare.

See all those heroes? Very few of them will actually be sailing to Gaza.
The Audacity of Hope will have about 40 on board, including crew.
They have raised several hundred thousand bucks in order to
bring...letters of solidarity to...Hamas.
Israel's demonizers have been using lawfare -- exploiting some countries' universal jurisdiction for war crimes cases -- during the past decade in order to weaken its international legitimacy. Some examples have included a 2009 arrest warrant issued for Tzipi Livni  for her role in Operation Cast Lead. Another for Deputy Prime Minister Moshe Ya'alon who was forced to cancel a to Britain for fear of being arrested there, and a warrant for Ehud Barak, who was attending a meeting at the Labour party conference in Brighton. He escaped arrest after the Foreign Office told the court that he was a serving minister who would be meeting his British counterparts. This ploy has also been tried in Spain, Belgium and France. While most sane observers believe these attempts are frivolous, they nonetheless work their delegitimizing magic on a world stage.

Well, Israel's supporters have found a high profile way to fight back using lawfare-type ploys to hamper the 2011 Flotilla's advance towards the Gaza blockade (which a UN committee will assert as legal in an upcoming report). According the a NY Times report“The departure of a pro-Palestinian flotilla of international ships planning to break Israel’s naval blockade of Gaza has been delayed, largely because of the efforts of an Israeli advocacy group, both sides said Tuesday.

“Greek authorities have detained two of the ships docked here, including an American vessel, after the Israeli advocacy group, Shurat HaDin-Israel Law Center, submitted a complaint to the Greek Coast Guard suggesting that seven of the ships might be lacking insurance or were improperly registered.
“Ten ships are expected to head toward Gaza this week in a challenge to Israel’s blockade of Gaza, which is governed by the militant group Hamas. All the vessels are insured and have been certified as seaworthy, said Adam Shapiro, a coordinator and spokesman for the flotilla.
“Shurat HaDin, which describes itself as a civil rights organization, has also contacted about 30 maritime insurance providers to warn that insuring the vessels may leave the companies open to prosecution for aiding a terrorist organization, said Nitsana Darshan-Leitner, the director of the group. There have been reports that several vessels have been unable to join the flotilla because of insurance problems.” Needless to say, USA to Gaza, the organizers of the 'Audacity of Hope' boat aren't that happy about this. Wow, like how how audacious of those Zionists!
As it is, Ynet reports that less than 300 participants are now planning to join the flotilla. Quite a comedown from last year when you consider that about 600 sailed on just the Mavi Marmara. Ynet has been handed an internal memo that reveals the pathetic decline in numbers:

"According to the memorandum the Italian ship Stefano Chiarim is expected to have 65 people on board – the largest number of passengers in the flotilla. The Canadian ship "Tahrir" will have 48 passengers and the American ship Audacity of Hope, which is currently being held at port by Greek authorities, is set to have 40 passengers.

"There are an additional seven ships from Spain, Ireland, Sweden, Greece and Norway which are expected to set sail. The organizers' most optimistic scenario is that there will be 292 passengers with an additional 36 journalists.

"But it is highly likely that some of the ships will be declared unfit to sail. In addition, it is possible that the Greek government will withhold a departure authorization, making the number of participants even smaller.

Of course, never ones to miss an opportunity to massage the truth, the Flotistas are managing to spin their failure this way, "The situation isn't good, it is true that we will sail with fewer passengers than the previous flotilla but aside from various reasons, we must remember that the Turks aren't participating so Israel won't be able to claim that this is an Islamist flotilla, so there are benefits."


  1. I'm not sure what company would be willing to insure the boats. It seems like a pretty high risk policy. I'm hoping that Israel will take out the propellers or rudders of the ships and leave them adrift for some third country to tow them to some port (preferably in Antarctica).

    I liked the way someone had renamed the Canadian ship as the "Sea Hitler". I'll throw in my two cents and rename the American ship as "The audacity of Dopes".


  2. I just love "The Audacity of Dopes"!


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