Israel was so intent on concealing the truth about its terrorist
attack on the "Free Gaza" flotilla that it not only cut off
all communications from the passengers but confiscated
an estimated $3.5 million of their cameras, cell phones, computers,
etc., which it refuses to return.
Yet, two invaluable video records of the attack exist. The first is
a preliminary report by Al Jazeera TV up to the time two activists
had been killed. After that, Israel evidently sabotaged its satellite
The second is an hour-long record of the pre-dawn hours of May 31,
just before the Israeli attack, by Korean-Brazilian film producer Iara
Lee. Unlike all other passengers, she smuggled her video record (in
her underwear) to the outside world. (The attack begins 33 minutes
into the video.) (Watch
it here or scroll down to bottom of page.)
These videos directly contradict Israel's claim that its commandos
were innocent victims of violent knife- and baton-wielding passengers
aboard the Mavi Marmara. Here are emerging discrepancies:
Israel says its commandos descended from a helicopter initially
using only paintball guns for defense and crowd control. Who's afraid
of splattering paint? Yet the police and Israeli military do not
shoot paint through paintball guns. They fast fire hard rubber balls
with velocity enough to cause deep bruising and intense pain, even
blindness if a ball hits the eye. Lee's video documents an Israeli
attack boat next to the ship, raising a fusillade of such missiles
against the ship and passengers. Other reports confirm such aggression
was accompanied by tear gas, stun grenades, and flash bombs meant
to temporarily blind their victims. Israel's preliminary attack in
darkness cannot be considered "non-violent," as Israel
Before the Al Jazeera video was cut off, it clearly shows one of
the commandos who had been lowered from the helicopter brandishing
an Uzi silencer-equipped submachine gun. It shoots the 9-mm rounds
that the Turkish coroner found in the bodies of the nine slain Turkish
defenders. The use of such machine guns could help explain the large
number of gunshot wounds in most of the victims, as well as the very
high number of those wounded (about 47) by Israeli gunfire.
If Israeli commandos were really intent on minimizing casualties,
one shot in the leg would have been enough to incapacitate a baton-wielding
assailant. The presence of at least one Uzi, however, indicates it
may have been Israel's preferred method of crowd control. The fact
that this weapon with silencer is relatively quiet may have made
it possible to inflict maximum injury on the most people without
drawing unnecessary attention.
Lee's video shows a number of defenders inside the ship clearly
reluctant to go outside and face Israeli gunfire. It shows a Turkish
defender standing near a porthole that has been shot or knocked out.
A moment later, multiple shots, evidently through the porthole, send
him to the floor. He crawls away to the left. If indeed he was fired
upon, this contradicts Israel's official position that commandos
only reluctantly fired in self-defense.
If machine guns weren't the primary means of inflicting so many senseless
injuries, there is another possible scenario. Since 9-mm ammunition
is fairly light in caliber, soldiers and police are taught to fire
it in bursts. The Israelis may have done this not only in defense but
into those crowding the decks of the Marmara. While this may
be acceptable in warfare, it is emphatically not acceptable on a boat
containing 600 virtually unarmed civilians. It suggests that Israel
did not view them as "peace activists" but deadly enemies.
(Several days earlier, Israel had officially described the entire flotilla
as "violent propaganda.")
Lee's video confirms what survivors say: After a white flag of truce
was raised, Israeli gunfire and murder continue. It also records the
pleas of one of the ships leaders to the Israelis, begging them to
desist from further violence. Repeatedly, the ship's loudspeaker blares
to the surrounding attack boats, "We have no guns here, we are
civilians taking care of injured people. Don't use violence, we need
Poignantly, this video shows Muslim medics fervently trying to save
the life of a wounded Israeli commando. In contrast, testimony of survivors
said Knesset member Haneen Zuabi, aboard the Mavi Marmara,
desperately tried to convince the Israeli commandos to allow medical
aid for wounded Turks. The Israelis refused, and the victims bled to
The above is information entirely derived from two eyewitness videos.
Many other witnesses have and are coming forward, claiming that actual
live gunfire came from the Israeli attack boats and the helicopter
both before and during the raid.
All this overwhelmingly underscores the necessity for a prompt, thorough,
and unbiased international investigation -- one that involves in-depth
questioning of both IDF forces involved in the raid as well as flotilla
survivors. Clearly, Israel has a great deal to hide and will succeed
in its evasion if the Obama administration and the UN concede to a
phony "in-house" Israeli investigation, supervised by a few
western observers handpicked by Israel. Prime Minister Netanyahu is
very blunt that the purpose of Israel's "unbiased, independent" commission
will not be to investigate the facts or even interview IDF forces involved
in the raid. Rather, it will be to establish Israel's innocence.
Don't let this happen! Contact the United Nations. Fax: 1-212-963-2155 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Address: United
Nations, New York, NY 117. Tell
the UN, "Please insist on an unbiased international investigation
of Israel's terrorist attack on the 'Free Gaza' flotilla." (More
contact information on freegaza.org)
Attack on the Mavi Marmara // Raw Footage" (producer Iara
From Al Jazeera Reporter on the Mavi Marmara:
Rev. Ted Pike is director of the National Prayer Network, a Christian/conservative
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