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Israel Captures Second Gaza-Bound Aid Ship

World  (tags: Gaza freedom flotilla, Gaza Blockade, Gaza massacre, Gaza massacre, media-news/world/Palestine, OCCUPATION, crimes against humanity in Gaza, March of Return 2018, IMPUNITY, U.S., ICC International Criminal Court Crimes, Refugees&Relief, middle-east )

- 230 days ago -
Israeli navy attacked and captured the second Gaza-bound aid ship named Freedom which aimed to break the illegal 12year siege on the Strip yesterday morning


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fly b (26)
Saturday August 4, 2018, 11:37 am
Israeli navy attacked and captured the second Gaza-bound aid ship named Freedom which aimed to break the illegal 12-year siege on the Strip yesterday morning.

Ynet News reported the Israeli army saying in a statement:

“The ship was monitored and was intercepted in accordance with international law.”

The statement added:

“The Israeli navy clarified to the ship’s passengers that they are violating the legal naval blockade and that any humanitarian merchandise can be transferred to Gaza through the Port of Ashdod.”

The ship was carrying ten international activists and, according to the Israeli media, after it was commandeered it was taken to the Israeli occupation’s Port of Ashdod.

On its website, the Freedom Flotilla said: “We lost contact with the yacht Freedom, sailing under a Swedish flag, which is on a mission to break the illegal Israeli blockade of the Palestinian people of Gaza.”

“We have reason to presume that the Israeli occupation forces have now begun to attack it and that it has been surrounded in international waters. The latest reported position was approximately 40 nautical miles from the coast of Gaza.”

Al-Awda, the other vessel in the Freedom Flotilla, was violently boarded by Israeli occupation forces in international water on Sunday and all the activists and aid on board were sieges. Many of the activists have since been deported.

“Based on what happened on Sunday, we anticipate that the Israeli occupation forces have now cut all communications with Freedom, so it can begin an undocumented attack.”

(MEMO, PC, Social Media)

fly b (26)
Saturday August 4, 2018, 11:40 am
Asma of Gaza: ‘I Saw the Face of the Sniper Who Shot Me’. (VIDEO)
July 30, 2018

By Wafa Aludaini

“I was looking at the sniper when he shot me.

Then he laughed, and I fell.”

So says Asma Abu Daqqa, a 23-year-old mother of three from Khan Younis, Gaza, describing being shot in the leg by an Israeli sniper near the separation fence during the Great Return March on May 14.

From the first day of the civil protests, Asma’s husband was there defending Palestinian rights and was shot three times by Israeli Occupation forces. Asma decided she too would participate, joining the March the day after her husband got shot.

Asma said:
“I march to prove to the well-armed Israeli soldiers that their guns will never stop us from protesting against injustice and violence against unarmed Palestinians.”

She can often be seen in the marches, full of life, like a butterfly flitting from one tent to the next, or one group to another, giving a helping hand to anyone who needs it, and rescuing the injured.

May 14 was a turning point, both in the Palestinian cause and in Asma’s life.

While watching where the Israeli tear gas and live ammunition was aimed, she saw a woman on the ground near the separation fence and ran to help her.

“I realized it was a woman. She was covered in blood,” recalls Asma.

Asma ran forward with her hands raised.

She shouted at the Israeli soldiers:

“Please let me rescue this woman! She’s bleeding! I’m unarmed!”

Asma recalled, sighing:

“An Israeli sniper gestured at me to approach and take the woman. I ran and picked her up, and came back. I heard screaming and yelling everywhere, people were shouting, ‘Look behind you, be careful!’. I turned around and saw an Israeli sniper pointing his gun directly at me. I told him not to shoot, but he did.”

The explosive bullet entered her leg and exited out the other side.

Asma remembers:
“I spent nearly a month in the hospital. My husband and little children spent the Holy Month (of Ramadan) without me. Sometimes they came to the hospital to have Iftar (dinner meal) together. The doctors said I would have to have my leg amputated so I felt lucky when one told me there was hope that I won’t need amputation.”

Like many of the injured in Gaza, Asma now needs to leave Gaza for treatment, due to the lack of medical equipment and supplies in the besieged enclave.

“My request to travel through the Erez crossing (into Israel) was refused,” she says, “and now I may have to wait for months to exit through the Rafah crossing. Every day waiting to cross the border is a new disaster for my leg.”

Even so, she counts herself lucky. Asma explains:
“Razan Al-Najjar, the medic who was killed by the Israeli Forces, was my best friend. When we were together in the Return Camp, she would sometimes hold my 4-month-old baby. When the journalists took pictures of them together, they thought it was her baby.”

When asked if she is going to keep going to the protests, Asma answers emphatically,
“Of course, without a doubt! When I recover, you’ll find me protesting at the separation fence again… We will keep protesting until we get our freedom.”

She added:
“It’s shameful that the Arab leaders watch us die slowly under the Israeli Siege, and do nothing. My message to the world is that we love life like everyone else, but we don’t have our basic rights as others do. We call upon all of you out there to take action, to end the Israeli Occupation.”

– Wafa Aludaini is a Gaza-based journalist, head of the youth group 16th October. She contributed this article to the Palestine Chronicle.

Kathleen Mireault (210)
Saturday August 4, 2018, 4:27 pm
Grimly noted. A painful, debilitating black pox on the murdering, cowardly war criminals! Thx Fly.

fly b (26)
Sunday August 5, 2018, 12:02 am
Israeli Activist Who Grew Up In A Kibbutz Sails To Gaza On The Freedom Flotilla.
July 28, 2018

Zohar Regev Chamberlain says the injustice she witnessed as a child, in Israel, moved her to defend Palestinian human rights.

Dimitri Lascaris is a lawyer, journalist, and activist. After working in the New York and Paris offices of a major Wall Street law firm, Dimitri became a class action lawyer in Canada. His practice focused on shareholder rights, environmental wrongs, and human rights. In 2012, Canadian Lawyer Magazine named him one of the 25 most influential lawyers in Canada, and in 2013, Canadian Business Magazine named him one of the 50 most influential persons in Canadian business. Dimitri ran as a Green Party candidate in Canada’s 2015 federal election and has served as the Justice Critic in the Green Party of Canada’s shadow cabinet.

TRNN video & transcript:

DIMITRI LASCARIS: This is Dimitri Lascaris, reporting for The Real News Network from Palermo, Sicily.

I’m here today with Zohar Regev Chamberlain. She’s an Israeli national and she is the representative for the Spanish campaign for the Freedom Flotilla. Thank you very much for joining us today.


DIMITRI LASCARIS: So I understand you, you were born and raised in a kibbutz. And I’m curious to know about your evolution from, you know, a child growing up on the kibbutz to what you are today, which is a human rights activist for the Palestinian cause. Could you sort of explain that?

ZOHAR REGEV CHAMBERLAIN: Okay. The evolution is, you know, part of me growing up. And I can say that as a child, already I’ve encountered injustice in the treatment of Israelis towards Palestinians. And one of the incidents I remember is my own kibbutz being, very much pushing for a Palestinian family’s house to be demolished quite close to us, and my parents helping those people by bringing them a tent, and you know, just showing solidarity with them, and how my peers on the kibbutz reacted to that. So saying, like, why are you helping these people? They’re, you know, sort of like, coming in towards us. And you know, they are human beings that we’re building on their land. They don’t have a house. There were children my age, and I just felt, you know, this wasn’t right.

So this was, you know, part of my family history, always being a part of the demonstrations against the settlements. I remember in ’82, 1982 after the Sabra and Shatila massacre, part of that demonstration asking, you know, demanding that there will be an investigation, and a lot of similar actions they have participated in. So my family’s always been, like, a dissident family. And it wasn’t accepted, it was a little bit nonconformist. And for me it was natural to grow from that. And as the situation gets worse, become more of an activist, try to do something more.

DIMITRI LASCARIS: And ultimately you emigrated to Spain, where your feelings about the Palestinian cause and the way that Palestinian people were being treated, part of your motivation for leaving the country.

ZOHAR REGEV CHAMBERLAIN: Yes. I left in 2004. And this was after or during the Second Intifada, depending on how you look at it. But you know, I could see that Israelis were sort of, like, claiming their right to go to a cafe while the Palestinians were maybe using violence. But they were just resisting, you know, occupation that’s been going on for too long. And the frustration after the Oslo Accords never actually, were never implemented.

And the feeling that I had was that if you stay in that situation as an Israeli citizen, with all the privileges that a Jew in Israel has, you’re collaborating. You pay taxes, but you also just accept living normally in a situation that shouldn’t be accepted by anyone. So by moving away, I was just trying to keep my own sanity, keep the sensitivity towards the suffering. But actually, it’s, of course I feel as a human being that, you know, this injustice inflicted on the Palestinians is a problem. But as part of, you know, the group that’s oppressing them I feel a double obligation to do something about it, or to, you know, to try out.

I was raised with the, you know, history of the Holocaust, and saying how could the world be silent when we were, you know, being taken to the gas chambers. And I say, you know, you don’t have to go to the gas chambers. It’s enough when you dehumanize somebody that ultimately you’ll get there. So you need to cry out way before. And now when people criticize Israel they’re being blamed, being anti-Semites, or whatever. I just feel that it’s totally hypocritical against the way I was brought up.

DIMITRI LASCARIS: What’s your assessment of the state of the Zionist project, and your prediction, acknowledging it’s very difficult to predict the sorts of things, about the future of the Zionist project?

ZOHAR REGEV CHAMBERLAIN: I think, first of all, the work we do here as the Freedom Flotilla, direct action to try to challenge the blockade, is all about human rights. But I think the fact that Zionism has neglected to respect the human rights of the indigenous people, you, know, the original residents of Palestine, makes it impossible to create a safe place for Jews, which was the original reason for Zionism. So I think it’s doomed to fail, and I just hope that it wouldn’t cause too much suffering before it ends.

DIMITRI LASCARIS: Lastly, I’d like to talk to you about the country you currently reside in. Spain seems to be, in many ways, on the forefront of the battle for Palestinian rights within the European Union. A number of communities, I believe you’re from Cadiz, and Cadiz is an example of a community that has taken a strong stand in defense of Palestinian rights. I believe it may have actually expressed some support for sanctions, the boycott movement. Valencia, a very large city in Spain, has declared itself an apartheid-free zone, Barcelona. And other cities, of course.

So on a local level there appears to be very strong support, and burgeoning support for the Palestinian cause in Spain. However, the national government doesn’t seem to be particularly interested in taking concrete measures to protect the rights of the Palestinian people. How do you explain that disparity between the grassroots support and the policies of the national government?

ZOHAR REGEV CHAMBERLAIN: I don’t think Spain is so much different to other countries in this respect. I think Western democracies don’t really listen to their people. I think people in Spain generally support the Palestinian cause, or at least traditionally supported. I think with time Israeli propaganda has filtered. And it’s true that we have a big network of local government and civil society groups that support human rights, defend human rights through the BDS movement. And there’s a whole network of Israeli apartheid-free zones in Spain.

But it’s still to be seen whether they’ll be able to put pressure on the central government to actually sanction Israel, because Israel is not held accountable. If they don’t feel the consequences of their policies. I don’t think there will be an end to it. And I think it needs to come from international pressure. I don’t believe that Israeli society itself can bring this change from within.

DIMITRI LASCARIS: I’d like to thank you very much, Zohar, for joining us today.


DIMITRI LASCARIS: And this is Dimitri Lascaris, reporting for The Real News from Palermo, Sicily.

Interview 07/11/18 Dr. Basem Naim: Israel Shuts Vital Crossing, But Gazans Will Not ‘Die in Silence’
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