AT the end of May, a flotilla – a
fleet of six - (three cargo and three passenger ships) – set sail from
Europe and Turkey, with a goal of breaking through Israel’s three-year
blockade of the Gaza coast.
The ships carried 10,000 tons of
“aid,” including a huge amount of cement, along with about 700
pro-Palestinian activists from more than thirty countries, the majority
of whom were Turkish. Also included on the “passengers” list were
nationals of US, UK, Greece, Canada, Belgium, Ireland, Australia,
Algeria, Jordan and Kuwait, and a number of journalists, a Swedish
author, and three German MPs.
The leading ship, with the most
passengers, was named the Mavi Marmara. It was one of three
Turkish vessels. The other three were organised by the Free Gaza
Movement, an international coalition of activist groups.
Several days before the flotilla
set sail, the two organizations – the Free Gaza Movement and the Turkish
Insani Yardim Vakfi (IHH) – the latter known to have ties with
internationally-recognized terrorist organizations – began announcing
their intention to sail a flotilla of boats to Gaza in an attempt to
breach the Israeli government’s blockade of the Strip.
Israel, which has long banned all
maritime traffic to Gaza, in an effort to limit the amount of weapons
being shipped into the Hamas stronghold, made it clear it would
not permit the ships to reach Gaza.
is a political-religious-military
organisation that waged a bloody military coup against its senior
Palestinian compatriots – the Fatah party – and took control of
the Gaza Strip in mid 2007.
Hamas and other Palestinian groups
then began a rocket war against Israel. More than 7,000 rockets were
fired upon Israeli civilian population centers from Gaza, causing
regular casualties and destruction.
The constant rocket attacks
inevitably led to a crackdown on Gaza in Dec 2008-Jan 2009 – a 22-day
war that left much of Gaza in ruins.
A blockade on Gaza was then
imposed by Egypt also, because of its concern that Hamas, which
is a creation of the Muslim Brotherhood in Egypt, could develop
into an Iranian-backed terrorist state that would work together with the
Brotherhood to topple the secular Egyptian government of President Hosni
As the Hamas charter calls
for the destruction of the Jewish state, it will not recognise Israel –
not even if the blockade is lifted.
The most significance part of this
whole Marmara affair, from the prophetic point of view, is …
If you look at the prophecy in
Ezekiel 38, concerning the Northern Confederation led by Rosh (Russia),
you will see that Turkey is embedded in this powerful endtime alliance:
“Son of man, set your face against Gog of the land of Magog, the chief
prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal, and prophesy against him, and say,
The Sovereign Master, YHWH, says: Listen! I am against you, O Gog, chief
prince of Rosh, Meshech, and Tubal.
“I will turn you around, put hooks into your jaws and bring you out with
your whole army - your horses and horsemen all fully armed, and a great
horde with large and small shields, all of them brandishing swords.
“Persia (Iran), Cush (Ethiopia), and Put (Libya)
will be with them, all with shields and helmets; Gomer (Germany) also
with all its troops; and Beth-Togarmah
- (the House of Togarmah) - from the far north (Turkey
and the Turkic people of Central Asia) with all
its troops - many nations with you. Get ready; be prepared, you and all
the hordes gathered about you, and take command of them.”
Here we see the Turkic races
linked with Russia and Iran in the endtime. Turkey will play a major
role in the coming world war of the Great Tribulation.
The government of Turkey, which
until 18 months ago, had been an ally of Israel, has become increasingly
antagonistic towards the Jewish state in recent months, while at the
same time moving deeper into the orbit of Iran, Syria, Lebanon, Hamas
In May, Turkey confronted Israel
and warned it not to try and stop the flotilla that was bound for Gaza.
Emboldened by Turkey’s support,
the “activists” on the ships sailed to Cyprus and there prepared for the
final leg of their voyage to Gaza.
Israel, making every effort to
avoid a confrontation – short of backing down – invited the
demonstrators to sail to the Israeli port of Ashdod from where their
humanitarian supplies could be shipped overland to Gaza. The “peaceniks”
refused, and on Sunday 30th May pushed towards Gaza.
An Israeli army spokesman called
the Marmara affair “an act of terror on the high seas.” Far from
being a humanitarian mission, the flotilla was sponsored personally by
Turkish PM, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, to break the Israeli blockade on Gaza,
and to enable arms supplies and terrorists to reach the Strip without
restriction. If the flotilla could not break the blockade, it would at
least provoke a widely publicized inter-national incident with
fatalities, and show Israel using strong-arm tactics against “unarmed
- TURKEY RELATIONS
Turkey, a predominantly Muslim and
historically secular country, has had decades of close military and
trade ties with the U.S. and the Jewish state.
Turkey welcomed Jews fleeing Nazi
persecution during the World War II and was among the first Muslim
countries to recognize Israel in 1948. Subsequently, the Israeli and
Turkish military forces worked closely together, and just recently,
Israel completed an upgrade of Turkish tanks and warplanes worth more
than $1 billion.
RECEP TAYYIP ERDOGAN
But relations between Israel’s
year-old right-leaning government, and Turkey’s Islamic-rooted
administration led by PM Recep Tayyip Erdogan who took power in 2002,
have been deteriorating since Israel’s 3-week war in Gaza which began on
December 27, 2008.
Last year, Erdogan berated
Israel’s President Shimon Peres over the war in Gaza, at an
international gathering in Davos, Switzerland.
Turkey has become increasingly
assertive, diplomatically, in the Middle East, backing Iran’s attempts
to quash new UN sanctions over its nuclear program, and trying to
mediate Israeli talks with Syria which demand the full withdrawal of
Israeli troops from the Golan Heights as a condition for peace.
Recently, Erdogan has been
accusing the world of turning a blind eye to Israel’s nuclear program
while Iran’s program is being scrutinized because of its membership in
the International Atomic Energy Agency. Israel, which has not signed the
non-proliferation treaty, he asserts, is “free to do whatever it wants.”
Now Erdogan says Turkey will
continue to support the Palestinian people. “We will not turn our back
on Palestine, Palestinians and Gaza,” he said. “No one should test
Turkey’s patience. Turkey’s hostility is as strong as its friendship is
Relations between Israel and
Turkey, after reaching a high point in the early 2000s, now appear to be
beyond repair. The flotilla affair was a culmination of the steep
decline in Israeli-Turkish relations that started with the Gaza war.
The flotilla cargo boats tried to
run a military blockade that was established by
Egypt and Israel
to prevent the terrorist group Hamas from refortifying. The boats
wanted to force their way into the port of Gaza. Or if they could not
succeed in that, the flotilla was meant to draw the world’s attention to
the blockaded Gaza.
The Israeli Navy repeatedly warned
the ships not to run the blockade. But the flotilla, which was carrying
items banned for entry into Gaza, ignored the warnings with the
expectation that an international conflict would develop that could be
used as a public relations lever against Israel.
Israel made repeated offers to the
ships asking that they sail to the port of Ashdod and unload their cargo
there. Israel guaranteed to pass on all of the items classified as
humanitarian, through the crossing to the Gaza strip. As the ships would
not comply, Israeli naval vessels were compelled to intercept the
flotilla and board the ships to take control.
The passengers on five of the
ships quietly surrendered; but on the sixth, the Marmara, the
Israelis encountered a strong resistance. The militants in the flotilla
clearly chose a path of confrontation.
The fight that followed was an
orchestrated set-up by radicals from among the activists, to discredit
Israel, and to create world sympathy for Gaza and Hamas.
ABOARD THE MARMARA
Three Israeli helicopters dropped
45 commandos onto the deck of the largest ship, the Marmara. As
each soldier reached the deck, he was leapt upon by iron-bar wielding,
chair-smashing, knife-stabbing and even gun-firing “activists.” They
were met with a band of terrorists who had planned on lynching the
Israel said about 50 activists
were deployed for battle, armed with clubs, baseball bats, steel rods,
knives and clubs, and in some instances, guns, firebombs, and other
weapons, and some were wearing gas masks.
The Israeli commandos were armed
with paintball guns - non-lethal weapons normally used as a
crowd-control tactic; and that are also used in a game in which people
shoot balls of paint at each other. The commandos carried pistols but
were ordered to use them only as a last resort. They were not expecting
a violent resistance on the ships.
Armed with knives, the terrorists
overpowered the first of the commandos, throwing them to the deck,
beating and knifing them, and trying to hang them. One soldier was
thrown overboard and others jumped in the sea to escape. They were
rescued by Israeli vessels.
It was only after one commando had
been stabbed in the stomach and beaten unconscious, that the commandos
were given the order to fire in self-defence.
An IDF spokesperson said it was a
pre-planned violent attack. “You can easily see the footage in which our
commandos were coming down from a helicopter and before even setting
foot on the deck of the ship, each one of them was attacked severely by
dozens of activists.”
Seven Israelis were shot
and wounded, two
critically, by the terrorist’s weapons. They were rescued and ferried to
Israeli hospitals by helicopter.
Nine of the violent
activists were killed,
and a number were wounded. All of the dead were Turks, and all were on
the Marmara, one of the three ships provided by Insani
Yardim Vakti (IHH) which has strong sympathies among
Turkey’s ruling party, and according to Israel, has links to Hamas
In all, about 700 Israeli troops,
including surveillance and support troops sailing in more than 20
Israeli vessels, took part in the takeover of the six ships.
The flotilla was told that a
blockade was still in force over Gaza, and that the Israel border patrol
was more than willing to allow the boats full passage into the sovereign
waters of Israel, and to dock and unload in Ashdod. Then, after
inspection, the goods would be transported directly to the Gaza Strip.
The problem was that the flotilla
vessels were not humanitarian aid ships merely trying to send aid to the
THE TURKS, SENT TO
BREAK THE GAZA SIEGE,
WERE PAID, AND
Israel’s military has determined
that scores of Turkish Islamists were paid and trained by elements close
to their government to battle Israeli soldiers in Ankara’s effort to
break the siege on the Gaza Strip.
- The World
An Israeli naval admiral said
about 40 men were armed with military-style gear and carried large sums
of money. “There is proof that dozens of people on the ship had
connections with terrorist organizations from around the region and the
world. Some of them were even known to us from past incidents they were
“NO INNOCENT PEOPLE
June 14/10. The nine Marmara
“passengers” killed were all Turkish and members of a known violent
group. “No innocent people were killed, only the terrorists,” says
Deputy Commander of the Navy Rear-Admiral Rani Ben-Yehuda.
“In future, the Israeli navy will
operate under the assumption that provocateurs are aboard any ships that
try to break the sea blockade on the Gaza Strip.”
The six ships were all eventually
escorted to Ashdod. Israel said 679 people were arrested, and were
investigated by police for their roles in the violence aboard the ship.
Within a few days almost all of them had been deported – some by land to
Turkey sent three planes to bring
back the majority of the activists, including the wounded, and the
bodies of the nine slain terrorists. Erdogan snubbed an Israeli offer
to fly back the Turkish wounded.
Thousands of Turks attended a
funeral of the nine slain Marmara “heroes” at an Istanbul mosque.
“May your martyrdom be blessed,” read a huge banner in the colors of the
Palestinian flag that was hanging on the wall surrounding the mosque
“Damn Israel! Israel is the angel
of death!” chanted the crowd while waving Turkish and Palestinian flags,
while pledging allegiance to Hamas. The NTV news channel put the
number of the mourners at between 15,000 and 20,000. “We are all
soldiers of Hamas,” the crowd shouted.
HAMAS REFUSES TO
RECEIVE THE AID
After inspection, Israel packed
the humanitarian aid taken from the activists’ flotilla and transferred
it over land to Gaza; but there Hamas was unwilling to accept the
cargo and the trucks filled with aid were not allowed to enter the Gaza
officials said they would not
accept the items piecemeal. (They evidently want the cement and
hardware.) Among the items found on the flotilla included expired
medications, clothing, blankets and toys.
The result of the Marmara
affair is another global round of Israel-bashing. That happens all the
time. When it comes to the state of the hated Jews, the truth rarely
finds acceptance in the court of international opinion.
Thanks largely to biased leftist
media, many millions of people are primed and ready to believe the worst
about the actions of Israel’s Jews. For the media it’s a case of, “Why
let the facts get in the way of a convenient and expedient story that
further feeds people’s prejudices and satisfies their twisted desires?”
Insani Yardim Vakfi
The Marmara affair was
instigated by terrorist planners in Turkey who have connections to
terrorist organizations through the IHH.
The IHH is a “charity”
that’s called the Foundation for Human Rights and Freedoms and
Humanitarian Relief. Despite its operating legally in Turkey,
Israel has accused the Istanbul-based charity of being a front for Iran,
al-Qaida and Hamas. Israel’s intelligence has found that
IHH was a leading supporter of al-Qaida in its insurgency
campaigns in Afghanistan and Iraq, and it has also supported Islamic
fighters in Algeria, Bosnia, Chechnya, Libya and Syria.
Founded in 1992, IHH has
been financed by Saudi Arabia, officials say. In 2008, Israel banned
IHH along with 35 Islamic charities linked to the Saudi-based
Union of Good, deemed a terrorist organization by the United States.
Richard Spencer of The Daily
Telegraph described the IHH, the main sponsor of the blockade
runners, as “a radical Islamist group masquerading as a humanitarian
New York Democratic Senator,
Charles Schumer, has added his voice to growing cries for an
investigation of terrorist links to IHH. Schumer asked US S of S
Hillary Clinton to “immediately conduct an investigation to determine if
the IHH is currently – or has in the past – provided financial,
logistical or material support to any terrorist organizations listed on
the State Department’s list of Foreign Terrorist Organizations.”
The “humanitarian flotilla” was a long-planned event sponsored by a
terrorist front, and was designed to provoke a fight. And in reality,
policy of the Obama Administration emboldened the terrorists
to raise the stakes by launching a
major assault on Israel.
FACTS ABOUT TURKEY
* Given the human rights abuses
rife in Turkey, including the de facto persecution of Christians, the
suffering of the Kurds at the hands of the Turks (which Kurds claim is
well beyond any self-defensive action taken by Israelis against Gazan
Arabs), and given the Turkish holocaust perpetrated against the 2
million Christian Armenians that Turkey murdered without repentance – it
is utterly hypocritical for an Islamic government of a nation with an
ugly history of genocide, to condemn Israel for protecting itself.
* We are reminded that Turkey
itself occupies a large part of “Kurdistan” and the European side of the
Bosporus which, like Izmir and the northwest Turkish Coast, was stolen
from Greece according to Greek Orthodox Church tradition and many modern
* Turkey’s foolish actions must
be seen in the light of Ezekiel 38. Turkey is undoubtedly setting itself
up for defeat and humiliation in the Gog and Magog quagmire from which
it will not escape.
* It’s time for the West to
recognize and acknowledge the
new global reality:
The present Turkish administration is no ally to Israel, the United
States or any nation that values the principles of truth, justice and
A PUBLIC RELATIONS
SUCCESS FOR HAMAS
The Marmara affair produced
a Public Relations victory for Hamas - its biggest success since
its forcible takeover of Gaza in 2007.
It was a victory, too, for foreign
supporters of the Palestinian cause, particularly the Turkish
government, which was an “unofficial sponsor” of the flotilla.
Sky News’ Dominic Waghorn said
Israel had “handed an enormous PR victory to the Hamas.” Waghorn
is oblivious it seems, to the fact that it is his and other
international journalists’ skewed coverage of what occurred that has
provided the PR victory for their Arab friends.
The protests across the world at
the Israeli action will have achieved the Turkish aim of
internationalising the Gaza issue rather than leave it as a cause that
primarily concerns Muslim nations.
ARAB LEAGUE CHIEF’S
VISIT TO GAZA
LEGITIMACY TO HAMAS
June 13/10. The head of the Arab
League, Amr Moussa, visited Gaza, effectively ending the Arab world’s
isolation of Hamas, and placing the League at odds with the US
view that Hamas should be shunned until it renounces violence and
recognizes Israel. Amr Moussa held talks with Hamas leader,
Ismail Haniyeh, who called the visit “historic,” and predicted it would
advance the campaign to end Israel’s blockade of Gaza.
The visit of Mahmoud Abbas to the
White House in June was supposed to be a triumphant visit, but it ended
with the Palestinian president being forced to smile as Obama announced
the US will provide $400 million in aid to Gaza. This generous gift will
boost Hamas, Abbas’ sworn enemy who three years ago ran him and
his Fatah henchmen out of Gaza.
Condemnation of Israel began to
resound around the world immediately after the flotilla was prevented
from reaching Gaza. The killing of the Turkish activists by Israeli
soldiers on the Marmara unleashed a new level of fury against
Turkey led the criticism, accusing
Israel of committing a “massacre.” PM Erdogan cried out that Israel
would pay the price for its actions!
On the first day, May 31/10,
around 10,000 Turks, carrying Palestinian and Turkish flags, marched in
protest from the Israeli consulate in Istanbul to a main square,
chanting, “Murderous Israel you will drown in the blood you shed!”
Earlier the protesters tried to storm the Israel Consulate building,
calling for it to be closed down.
Demonstrations against Israel were
also staged immediately in Syrian and Lebanese towns, and then in many
parts of the world, including Sydney and Melbourne, where
pro-Palestinian movements have become very vocal.
The Iranian President,
Ahmadinejad, declared that Israel is near the point of its total
Russian PM, Vladimir Putin, also
condemned Israel’s action.
Palestinian chief Mahmoud Abbas,
also cried, “Israel has committed a massacre,” while his mouthpiece,
Sa’eb Erekat, pronounced Israel guilty of “another war crime.” For good
measure the PA/PLO immediately declared three days of mourning for those
Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, Iran’s
supreme leader, responded by calling Israel’s actions a “criminal
attack” that “should have convinced everyone that Zionism is the new and
more violent face of fascism.” The ayatollah then went on to demand
Prime Minister Netanyahu’s arrest and warned Israel that the Islamic
nations’ “fury will uproot you.”
NEWS MEDIA SLANTED
Of course, what pursued was the
twisting of the Marmara story by the anti-Semitic media into a
total fabrication as to what really happened on that ship. (Only in
Satan’s world could the people of this earth have so much hate towards
the people and nation chosen of Yahweh to ultimately bless the world.)
The BBC screamed: “Death as Israel
storms aid ship.”
The CNN network said: “Israeli
commandos killed at least 10 people in pre-dawn raids on a flotilla of
six ships carrying aid for the Palestinian territory of Gaza…”
CNN also gave a platform to
Gaza-based Hamas spokesman, Sami Abu Zuhri, who said: “The
Israeli attack on the
is an ugly crime against international law and this reflects the nature
of the criminal
President Obama voiced deep regret
over the deadly raids, but expressed the importance of “learning all the
facts and circumstances” surrounding the incident involving aid ships
seeking access to the blockaded Gaza Strip.
But Mr. Obama’s mere
characterization of the acts that led to the deaths in the Gaza flotilla
as “tragic” unleashed a withering response from Liz Cheney, daughter of
the former vice president. “There is no middle ground here,” she said in
a statement. “Either the United States stands with the people of Israel
in the war against radical Islamic terrorism, or we are providing
encouragement to Israel’s enemies — and our own.”
US S of S Hilary Clinton supported
a Security Council statement that condemned the “acts” that cost the
lives of the pro-Palestinian activists off the Gaza coast. But US
officials did not say whether they blamed Israel or the activists for
The United States is attempting to
remain neutral, refusing to condemn Israel, but likewise, refusing to
condemn the actions of the flotilla “peace passengers.”
TOP U.S. DEMOCRATS:
“ISRAEL HAS RIGHT TO
US Vice President Joe Biden and
House Speaker Nancy Pelosi went on the offensive to defend Israel’s
right to protect its territorial waters.
Biden told reporters that Israel
was within its legal rights in stopping the Turkey-sponsored six-ship
flotilla from violating its territorial waters and breaking its naval
embargo on Gaza. Biden said during an interview on a television program,
“You can argue whether Israel should have dropped people onto that ship
or not – but the truth of the matter is, Israel has a right to know ...
whether or not arms are being smuggled in.”
Pelosi refused to be drawn into
the blame game, and emphasized that “Israel is our friend. I think with
Israel we have a very close friendship, and to have a democratic Jewish
state in that region is something that has been a goal of our foreign
policy. It is something that is based on our national security interest;
it is about us as much – even more – than it is about them. We all –
many of us here – are striving for a two-state solution,” she added,
“but it has to be a solution where there is security for both sides.”
EU PARLIAMENT BOILS
The action on the Marmara
brought immediate condemnation from the EU. Diplomatic repercussions
were immediate, with Israeli ambassadors being summoned in most European
capitals. There were also violent demonstrations and much strong
rhetoric from EU leaders.
European Council President, Herman
Van Rompuy, called the loss of life during the raid, “inexplicable.”
Spanish Foreign Minister Miguel
Angel Moratinos, whose country holds the rotating EU presidency, said
that such acts “cannot be repeated.” “It is time for the international
community and the parties (to the conflict) to realise that it is not
possible to continue with these kinds of situations, which end in drama,
violence, death, desolation and frustration,” he said. “The state of
Israel is acting like a
international community cannot let this go on anymore.”
Luxembourg’s former economy
minister, MEP Robert Goebbels, said: “It is a case for the International
Criminal Court. The ICC has to look at this act of
waters,” he added. He went on to describe the Israeli blockade of the
Gaza Strip as “a kind of gulag.”
“I AM 100% ON ISRAEL’S SIDE”
June 8/10. Britain’s former-Prime
Minister, Tony Blair, said in an interview with Channel 10, that he
supports Israel’s right to self-defence, but he also favours an
international probe into the deadly clash on the Marmara.
While Blair stressed the need to
launch an international, impartial probe into the incident, he assured
that he wholeheartedly supports Israel’s right to self-defence. There
are no questions at all. There have been rockets fired from Gaza, there
are people in Gaza who want to kill innocent Israelis,” he said. “When
it comes to security, I am one hundred percent on Israel’s side.”
EGYPT SILENT - AND
While reports of national leaders
condemning Israel for their actions have been prominent, little mention
has been made of the fact that Egypt did not join in the condemnation.
One report noted that Egypt had
been silent - but it didn’t explain that
imposed a blockade on Gaza along with Israel
because of Hamas being in control in Gaza!
ISRAEL’S RESPONSE TO
THE WORLDWIDE ONSLAUGHT
PM Netanyahu regretted the loss of
life sustained by the international activists, but said the Israeli
troops had the right to self-defence and were justified in defending
“They were mobbed, they were
clubbed, they were beaten, stabbed, and shot at. There was an attempt to
lynch them. Are these pacifists? The soldiers defended their lives with
incomparable restraint. What would any other country do? At best, they
would act in the same way - or much worse.”
He rejected world criticism saying
that Israel must prevent Gaza’s militant Hamas rulers from rearming. “In
Gaza, there is a terrorist state under Iranian sponsorship,” he said.
“Opening a sea route to Gaza would present a grave danger to our
citizens. Therefore we are maintaining our policy of a naval blockade.”
Mr Netanyahu exhibited stiff
resolve in the deadly Gaza flotilla episode, saying, “The state of
Israel faces an attack of international hypocrisy. This is not the first
time we have faced this; two years ago we faced a massive attack of
missiles fired by Hamas who hid behind civilians. Israel went to
great lengths to avoid civilian casualties but who did the U.N.
condemn? It condemned Israel.”
Netanyahu said it was Israel’s
duty to prevent rockets and other weapons being smuggled into Gaza to
Hamas by Iran and others. The flotilla, he argued, was not aiming to
deliver humanitarian aid to Gazans but was trying to break the blockade.
“This was not a
love boat, this was a boat of hate!”
“If the blockade had been broken,
hundreds of ships would have followed, with a scale of smuggling far
greater than that possible in the tunnels.”
Netanyahu, who was in Ottawa,
Canada, for engagements at the time of the incident, had planned to
travel to Washington on 1st June, at the invitation of President Barack
Obama who evidently wanted to make amends with him after a recent bad
spate. But the meeting with Obama was cancelled due to the Gaza crisis.
MARK REGEV (Spokesman)
Israeli government spokesman, Mark
Regev, accused the “peace activists” of hypocrisy, saying, “While they
appear to use the language of human rights in their propaganda, it
appears they have embraced the [Hamas] regime that has no respect
for human rights whatsoever.”
Deputy Foreign Minister Danny
Ayalon said: “The armada of hate and violence in support of the
Hamas terror organization was a premeditated and outrageous
provocation. The organizers are well-known for their ties to Global
Jihad, al-Qaida and Hamas. They have a history of arms
smuggling and deadly terror. On board the ship we found weapons that
were prepared in advance and used against our forces. The organizers’
intent was violent, their method was violent, and unfortunately, the
results were violent.”
Ayalon said that the Gaza flotilla
did not heed Israel’s calls to halt its movement toward Gaza, and
stressed that no sovereign country would have allowed such a provocation
to take place. “We couldn’t allow the opening of a corridor of smuggling
arms and terrorists.”
“We did everything to avoid this
outcome. We repeatedly called upon the organizers and all those who were
associated with them, through diplomatic channels and any other means we
could, to stop this provocation.
“The so-called humanitarian aid
was not for a humanitarian purpose. Had it been for a humanitarian
purpose, they would have accepted our offer to deliver all humanitarian
supply through the appropriate channels which are used on a daily basis,
as we make sure that Gaza will not be short of humanitarian supplies. On
a daily basis, we do that. We asked them to send this through the
appropriate channels, whether it’s the U.N., whether it’s the Red Cross,
whether it’s our people, but to no avail.
said repeatedly that their intent and purpose was
to break the
“The maritime blockade on Gaza is
very legal and justified by the terror that Hamas is applying in
Gaza. Allowing these ships to go in an illegal way to Gaza would have
opened, in fact, a corridor of smuggling arms and terrorists to Gaza,
with the results, inevitable results, of many, many thousands of
civilian deaths and violence all over the area.
“No sovereign country would
tolerate such violence against its civilian population, against its
sovereignty, against international law. And we in Israel call today upon
all relevant parties and all relevant countries to work together on
calming the situation.”
MICHAEL OREN (Israel
Ambassador to US):
“We, too, want a free Gaza — a
Gaza liberated from brutal Hamas rule — as well as an Israel
freed from terrorist threats. But the real intent of breaking the
embargo is to allow rockets to be transported to Gaza from Hamas’
suppliers in Syria and Iran.
Israel has a right and a duty to
defend itself from Hamas and its backers. Our struggle is not
with the people of Gaza but only with the radical regime that overthrew
the legitimate Palestinian Authority and has pledged to seek Israel’s
Each day some 100 trucks, laden
with food and medicine, enter Gaza from Israel. Israel has never banned
food and medicine from Gaza, but only those items that can assist
Hamas in reinforcing its illegal rule, or enabling it to achieve its
stated goal of destroying Israel. If Hamas, which has fired more
than 7,000 rockets at Israeli civilians, would renounce violence and
join the peace process, then Israel would gladly remove all such
restrictions. But Israel will also persist in denying advanced weaponry
At the same time, the Israeli
government will vigorously pursue peace with the Palestinian Authority,
which shares our need for defence against armed extremists. The real
peace activists are those who support our vision of a two-state
solution, not those supporting the terrorists bent on destroying it.”
The Turkish government seized on
the outcome of the Marmara affair to accuse Israel of piracy,
banditry and murder.
PM Erdogan furiously blamed Israel
for a “bloody massacre” on ships that were taking “humanitarian aid” to
Gaza that killed nine people, and said it deserves
every kind of curse.
He declared the two countries had reached a turning point in their
long-standing alliance. “Today is a turning point in history. Nothing
will be the same again,” he said, gesturing angrily with his voice
shaking. He said the boarding of the Mediterranean flotilla was a crime
against “international law, the conscience of humanity, and world
Erdogan angrily demanded that
Israel immediately halt its “inhumane” blockade of Gaza. “Israel in no
way can legitimize this murder, it cannot wash its hands of this blood.
Israel cannot face the international community without expressing
regret. Israel cannot ensure its security by drawing the
hatred of the entire world,”
Erdogan declared. (Quite an exaggeration!!)
He then went on to refer to
Israel’s actions as
terrorism” that would
receive “the deserved response . . . using all possibilities offered.”
Turkey withdrew its ambassador to
Israel immediately after the raid, scrapped three joint military
exercises, and called the UN Security Council to an emergency meeting
that demanded an impartial investigation.
THE TURKISH SPIN
On the Marmara, a reporter
for Turkish television was heard screaming into his camera: “These
savages are killing people here, please help!”
The news flashed around the globe.
That is to say, an uninformed and misinformed version of what was
happening flew from network to network.
The headlines, reporting,
condemnations and outrage voiced on the morning of May 31, 2010 were
predictable – “Israel had attacked a sailing flotilla of peace activists
who were simply seeking to take humanitarian aid to the suffering people
of the Gaza Strip. IDF soldiers had opened fire indiscriminately on the
unresisting protestors, killing up to 19 of them.”
The reporting went on: “Israelis
have dropped from a helicopter onto the deck of a Turkish ship and have
immediately opened fire on unarmed civilians.”
Israel had deliberately “targeted
innocent civilians,” claimed the troublemaking Turkey’s foreign
ministry, warned of “irreparable consequences” to the two countries’
Rather than waiting until all of
the facts emerged, Turkey rushed forward, revealing an all too eager
desire to condemn Israel and further fan into flames the Muslim world’s
enmity and rage. The bottom line is that Turkey is picking a fight.
Rather than to seek peace in the region, Turkey is fanning the flames of
an ancient hatred that needs little encouragement.
CRITICIZES THE U.S.
Turkey’s Foreign Minister, Ahmet
Davutoglu, ratcheted up the pressure on the Obama administration to take
a tougher stand against Israel, saying he was disappointed by what
Ankara regards as a slow and tepid response by the international
community to the raid by Israeli forces on a flotilla of Turkish aid
ships. He demanded, ahead of a meeting with US S of S, Hilary Clinton,
that the US condemn the raid - a measure the White House has not taken.
“I have to be frank; I am not very
happy with the statement from Washington,” Davutoglu said in a meeting
with a small group of reporters here. “We expect a clear condemnation.”
He also expressed disappointment that it took 11 hours for the UN
Security Council to come up with a statement condemning the raid, a
thinly-veiled criticism of the US, which worked behind the scenes to
weaken some of its language.
“We expect full solidarity with
us,” Mr. Davutoglu said of the US response. “It should not seem like a
choice between Turkey and Israel. It should be a choice between right
and wrong, between legal and illegal.”
He called the raid a “criminal
act,” saying that because it occurred in international waters, the ships
were sovereign territory that couldn’t be legally boarded.
Davutoglu had the gall to liken
the actions of Israel to the
Sept. 11, 2001
attacks on the United
In an effort to hide the Turkish
government’s involvement, Davutoglu said that the Turkish government had
intervened with the non-governmental organizations behind the flotilla
before they approached Israel in hopes that a confrontation could be
avoided, but it couldn’t directly order the groups to desist.
He said that in discussions with
the NGOs, the Turkish government had been led to believe the flotilla
would approach only Gazan waters, where they would protest Israel’s
blockade before moving on to Israeli ports to unload their aid.
“We did our best to approach the
Turkish NGOs to take this humanitarian aid to other ports,” he said. “We
cannot control NGOs. Turkey is a democratic country; we can only try to
MORE ATTEMPTS TO
Israel has pledged to halt new
attempts by pro-Palestinian groups to sail more ships into Gaza.
The Free Gaza Movement said
it would not be deterred, and that another cargo vessel was already off
the coast of Italy en route to Gaza. A second boat carrying about three
dozen passengers is expected to join it.
PM Erdogan made sure his close
aides leaked word to the media that he was preparing a large wave of
flotillas to challenge Israel’s blockade, to be escorted next time by
armed Turkish warships with himself possibly on board.
Erdogan’s office in Ankara is
passing out millions of dollars to the IHH, the Istanbul-based
terrorist group linked to al-Qaida and Hamas, with orders
to purchase 8 to10 large ships for a formidable fleet to challenge the
Israeli Navy and its enforcement of the 20-mile blockade of the Gaza
Iranian supreme leader Ayatollah
Ali Khamenei also declared in an interview cited by Reuters, that
Iran would be willing to send its Revolutionary Guard members to
accompany further aid ships to Gaza.
IRANIAN SHIPS READY
TO RUN THE BLOCKADE
June 11/10. Two Iranian ships that
plan to head for Gaza escorted by “volunteer marines,” are waiting for
their government’s approval to challenge Israel on the high seas.
President Ahmadinejad says he wants to send the Iranian vessels
“to teach Israelis a
A Revolutionary Guard’s spokesman
for Supreme Leader Ayatollah Ali Khamenei, said it was “Iran’s duty to
defend the innocent people of Gaza.”
Ahmadinejad assured Turkish
leaders on June 8 that the vessels due to enter the disputed waters
within days will
not shrink from a head-on clash with Israel’s Navy and Air Force
exclusion forces. “We’ll breach
the Gaza blockade,” the Iranian president vowed.
WILL END ZIONIST REGIME
Ahmadinejad also said that the
Israeli commando raid on the international flotilla was “barbaric” and
he called for the dismantling of the Zionist regime. He warned that any
further aggression by Israel “would bring about the demise of the
“With God’s help thousands
of flotillas from all over the world will sail to Gaza,”
The Israeli attack on the
Gaza-bound flotilla sounded the death knell of the “Zionist regime,”
Ahmadinejad told an enthusiastic crowd at Istanbul’s Abou Ayyoub Ansari
Like Turkey, Iran displays an
appalling hypocrisy. Iran murders innocent civilians, supports terrorism
and pursues an illegal nuclear program, and calls for the annihilation
of both the US and Israel - (the big and the small satans). The world
largely ignores Iran’s severe misbehavior, while accusing Israel of acts
ISRAELI TROOPS TAKE
THE RACHEL CORRIE
June 5/10. Israeli troops took
control of another aid ship that was trying to break the Gaza blockade.
When the Irish-owned Rachel
Corrie refused to change direction, Israel’s soldiers boarded the
ship, but did not meet any resistance. The ship was taken to the
Israeli port of Ashdod.
Speaking after he was updated on
the peaceful takeover of the Gaza bound aid ship “Rachel Corrie,”
Benjamin Netanyahu again said that Israel would “not allow the
establishment of an
Iranian port in Gaza.”
MORE AID SHIPS
AFTER WORLD CUP
June 29/10. Israel should
expect at least eight more humanitarian ships to be headed for Gaza
after the World Cup. Hamas leader Mahmoud al-Zahar told the British
newspaper, The Independent, "more ships than you expected” will
head for Gaza in August during Ramadan. The World Cup competition ends
The Marmara raid has set
off a legal debate over whether Israel acted illegally by confronting
ships in international waters. Israel’s Justice Ministry issued a
statement saying the actions were permissible under international law
since the vessels were clearly headed toward a hostile territory.
Joe Powderly, an international law
researcher at the T.M.C. Asser Institute in the Netherlands, rejected
claims by some critics that Israel committed an act of piracy.
But Turkey’s state prosecutors are
instructed to prepare charges of murder and piracy on the high seas
against the Israel’s prime minister, defense minister, and the chief of
SOME FACTS ABOUT
* Israel’s maritime blockade of
Gaza is legal according to articles 93-104 of the 1994 San Remo treaty
on maritime warfare. Israel told the flotilla it was about to enter
conflict waters and was not permitted to do so. The ships informed
Israel of their intent to enter these waters. Israel commandeered the
ships, according to Article 98 of the above-mentioned treaty.
* It was only after activists
took guns from Israeli soldiers and used them against those soldiers
that Israel opened fire. The Fourth Geneva Convention is clear about
this. Article 5 states that if a civilian takes up arms against a
soldier, the civilian becomes a combatant.
* The situation on the boats is
thus clear. The boats were attempting to break a military blockade.
After issuing a warning, the soldiers attempted to commandeer the boats,
and were set upon by the activists. At a certain point, which came after
activists opened fire on Israeli troops, these troops felt their lives
were in imminent danger. They thus fired in order to defend themselves.
MORE BACKGROUND TO
Here are some of the hard facts:
* In 2005, Israel withdrew
unilaterally from Gaza in a misplaced attempt to bring peace with the
Palestinians, only to see the Gaza Strip freedom immediately misused to
attack Israel with rockets supplied by Iran.
* Since Hamas seized
control from Fatah in 2007, it has been the de facto sovereign power of
Gaza. As sovereign, it has launched attacks against Israel. And as such,
Israel declared itself to be in a state of war against Hamas-run
Gaza. Israel has frequently stated that when Hamas agrees to live
in peace with Israel, peaceful relations will ensue.
* Due to this state of war,
Israel enforces a military and naval blockade. The blockade is not
designed to starve Gaza into submission; it is designed to deny Hamas
the ability to fight effectively.
* Article 23 of the Fourth
Geneva Convention (which concerns the protection of civilians during
warfare) makes clear that if goods entering enemy territory contribute
to the enemy’s war effort, they can be blocked.
* Israel enforces a maritime
blockade because Hamas has previously shipped in weapons. Israel
wants all goods going into Gaza to cross Gaza-Israel land borders. That
way, Israel can inspect the goods, ensure there are no weapons or war
materials in them, and then send them through.
* According to one report, in
the past 18 months alone, close to 1 million tons of humanitarian
supplies have entered Gaza from Israel. The Gaza Strip is the home to
1.5 million people. This means the Gaza Strip may be the most aid-rich
piece of territory on the earth.
* Reports of people suffering
in Gaza are exaggerated. Every type of commodity is smuggled into the
territory by way of the Gaza-Egypt border tunnels.
* Israel regularly allows
Gazans with serious health conditions, to enter Israel for treatment.
* There are hardships for some,
just as there are in every country, but the tragedy is that the hardship
in Gaza is a direct result of the Fatah regime of Mahmoud Abbas
and his predecessor Yasser Arafat stealing, pilfering, embezzling,
misappropriating, and misallocating the huge amount of
international financial aid foolishly provided by the US, European
governments, and the UN.
* Much of the materials shipped
into Gaza are routinely seized and used for construction of
rocket-launching bunkers positions to attack Israeli civilians.
* Both tunnels and sea routes
of access to Gaza have furnished Iran with the means of smuggling in
many weapons of terror.
THE GAZA EMBARGO
The flotilla organisers can take
credit for stirring up a storm inside Israel, and in other nations, over
the Gaza embargo, which was imposed after Hamas took over the Gaza Strip
Israel continues to permit entry
into Gaza of humanitarian goods such as food, medicine and clothing. But
it banned armaments and building materials such as concrete on the
grounds that Hamas could use the material for building bunkers.
unlike the Palestinian Authority, refuses to recognise Israel and is
publicly committed to its destruction. This is the basic problem. If
Gaza’s Palestinian rulers were willing to accept the presence of Israel
in the Middle East, and had a mind to negotiate a mutually acceptable
solution, the problem could be solved. But they are not willing!
like the Muslim Brotherhood, and al-Qaida, and
Hizb’ullah, and Iran, are not moderates. None of them want to live
in proximity to the Jewish state. They want to annihilate Israel.
This animosity, of course, goes
back 4000 years, to Ishmael and Isaac, the sons of Abraham. As the
Scriptures have recorded:
“The Angel of YHWH also said to her (Hagar), ‘Look, you are
with child, and you will bear a son; and you shall call his name
Ishmael, because YHWH has given heed to your affliction. He will be a
wild type of a man, his hand will be
against everyone, and everyone’s hand will be against him.
And he will live in hostility towards all his brothers’.”
And then God also said:
“And as for Ishmael, I have heard you. Watch! I will bless him, and will
make him fruitful, and will multiply him exceedingly. He shall become
the father of twelve princes, and I will
make him into a great nation. But My covenant I will
establish with Isaac, whom Sarah will bear to you at this set time next
year.” (Genesis 17:20-21)
Ishmael was half Egyptian - his
mother Hagar was Egyptian, and his 12 sons were therefore 3/4
Egyptians. They integrated with other Arab nationalities; and they have
been blessed with much of the oil wealth of the world. But Ishmael’s
hand is constantly against his brothers, everyone – especially Israel.
Cairo is distrustful of Hamas
because of its ties to the banned Muslim Brotherhood in
Egypt, and therefore it has also closed its border to the Gaza Strip.
Egypt does not want to see a radical Iranian-backed terrorist state on
its northern border.
DEMANDS TO LIFT THE
Israel says it allows about 15,000
tonnes of humanitarian aid into Gaza every week, but the UN says this is
less than a quarter of what is needed.
UN chief Ban Ki-moon has demanded
that Israel lift its blockade of the Gaza Strip immediately, calling the
siege “counter-productive, unsustainable and wrong.”
Deputy UN chief Oscar
Fernandez-Taranco said the deaths could have been avoided if only Israel
had lifted its blockade. (It can also be said that the deaths could have
been avoided if the “activists” had not been hell-bent on hating
Deceived by patently hysterical
headlines flashing around the world, officials like Catherine Ashton,
the EU’s head for Foreign Affairs, and senior UN figures Robert Serry
and Filippo Grandi, laid the blame for the whole affair at Israel’s door
and demanded Israel immediately lift the blockade of Gaza.
The new British FM, John Haig,
also called on Israel to open all the crossings for a free flow of aid
In remarks to reporters at
the US State Department, Hilary Clinton did not call for an end to the
blockade, but she pressed Israel to allow
for humanitarian relief
supplies, “including reconstruction and building supplies.” But in a jab
at Israel, Clinton said the situation in Gaza is “unsustainable and
EGYPT OPENS GAZA
Soon after the Marmara
affair, Egypt decided to lift its closure on the Gaza Strip
Even though it has cool relations
with Hamas, Egypt said it was opening the Rafah crossing on the
Gaza border for the first time in more than a year, to allow in
humanitarian aid in from Egypt. (Of course, the 1000 or more tunnels
under the Egypt-Gaza border enables a huge amount of equipment of every
type to be brought in.) Egypt’s latest action set off a mad rush to the
crossing by thousands of Gazan residents.
On the first day, several thousand
— some in cars with suitcases piled on their roofs, others on foot —
rushed to the Egyptian border, hoping to take advantage of a rare chance
to escape. After milling about for several hours, they were sent home by
Hamas security forces. Evidently, Egypt has yet to permit fully
free passage into its territory.
The only Gazans allowed into Sinai
(Egypt) are those with specially obtained permits, including sick
people, students and others who receive the approval of the Egyptian
It seems that thousands of
Palestinians have now crossed into Sinai after months of not being able
to leave Gaza.
In practice, the Egyptian regime
was Israel’s partner in instituting the blockade. While allowing
humanitarian aid into Gaza via Rafah, Egypt, like Israel, does not
permit construction materials to pass.
Before lifting the closure, Egypt
did not allow students and ill Palestinians to leave Gaza, though it did
grant entry to Palestinians who obtained special permits. Cairo also
limited entry to Hamas legislators as part of its blockade.
The new measures are still unclear
as Egypt reiterated its position that the Rafah crossing would be opened
and closed according to the terms stipulated in the border-passage
agreement signed with Israel and the European Union.
This agreement states that the
Rafah crossing must be staffed by a contingent of forces from the
Palestinian Authority’s Presidential Guard (which is loyal to PA
President Mahmoud Abbas), and a European supervisory force.
Due to the rift between Hamas
and Abbas-Fatah factions, no agreement has been reached over
the stationing of the Presidential Guard.
The PA is dissatisfied
with Egypt’s decision to reopen Rafah because it fears the move will
further enable Hamas to solidify its rule over the Gaza Strip,
and eventually plot a coup against the West Bank.
EU PRESSES ISRAEL TO
June 14/10. The European Union is
pressing Israel to lift the blockade of Gaza, saying it is
“unacceptable.” EU members met in Luxembourg to discuss ways in which
Europe could renew its role in helping super-vise Gaza’s volatile border
Mideast mediator Tony Blair said
he hopes Israel will soon ease the three-year-old blockade by allowing
commercial goods and reconstruction materials to flow into the
ISRAEL – EUROPEAN RELATIONS
Israel’s relations with the EU and
other world powers have taken a battering in the wake of the flotilla
action. But Israel’s relations with the European Union were already
fragile before Marmara.
The relationship between the EU
and Israel was severely damaged by Israel’s execution of the 2008 Gaza
war, but it had been recovering slowly despite on-going concerns over
Israel’s settlements building plans.
Now the naval operation against
the Gaza aid flotilla may have damaged ties between the two sides.
In spite of this, experts believe
Israel will not buckle under growing pressure.
WAYS TO EASE BLOCKADE
Netanyahu said: “Our policy was
and will continue to be that Israel would let humanitarian aid, any kind
of goods that are meant for peace, to the civilian population of Gaza,”
“We have no problems with the
people of Gaza. We do have a conflict with the terrorist regime of
Hamas, supported by Iran. We want to maintain a situation where we
prevent weapons and war materials from coming into Gaza, but allow
humanitarian aid to go to the population of Gaza.”
Amidst the rising tension,
Netanyahu’s spokesman, Mark Regev, indicated Israel would consider ways
to ease the blockade to allow more goods into Gaza — a policy that has
been quietly under way in recent months.
“We have been expanding the
assistance that has been going into the Gaza Strip — both the volume and
the variety of goods — and we have an ongoing dialogue with the
international community,” he said.
The furore over the blockade has
raised questions in Israel as to whether the embargo is politically
“TO END THE GAZA
GILAD SHALIT HIS RIGHTS”
Gilad Shalit remains held in total
isolation in Gaza with no access to the International Red Cross or other
humanitarian bodies, contrary to the Geneva Convention. Since his
capture, Hamas has provided only two indications that Gilad is
still alive – a recorded message of his voice released two years ago and
a video of him released last October.
has refused Israeli offers to free up to 1,000 terrorists and prisoners
in exchange for Shalit. Hamas wants hundreds of hard-core
terrorists released as well.
Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman
said; “If Hamas truly wants to end the blockade on Gaza, there is
an easy way to do so - allow the Red Cross to visit kidnapped IDF
soldier Gilad Shalit. Granting visits to Shalit, as required by
international law, is “the minimal condition for lifting the blockade,”
“As long as this condition is not
fulfilled, there is no reason to change the situation,” Lieberman
Defence Minister Ehud Barak says
there will be a change in Israel’s embargo policy if Hamas frees
the captured Israeli soldier it holds, Gilad Shalit, and terminates all
UN SECURITY COUNCIL
INSISTS ON INTERNATIONAL INQUIRY
June 1/10. The UN Security
Council has called for an impartial inquiry into Israel’s raid on the
Gaza-bound flotilla. Condemning Israel’s “acts” which led to the
deaths of nine “civilian activists,” a UN statement said the
investigation should be “prompt, impartial, credible and transparent.”
But there was no mention made of links between terrorist groups and the
The UN statement was the result of
a compromise between Turkey and the US. Obama supported the call for “a
credible, impartial and transparent investigation” of the event, but
refused to condemn Israel or take the inquiry out of its hands. Turkey,
however, was reluctant to water down its scathing criticism of Israel.
The compromise took out direct
condemnation of Israel and removed references to an international
investigation. It also weakened demands for an end to the economic
blockade of Gaza that the activists were trying to break, but the
incident has refocused inter-national attention on the siege, and many
states have renewed calls for it to be lifted.
Though Israel allows thousands of
tons of supplies into Gaza on a weekly-basis, The New York Times
said the UN resolution also called for a “sustained and regular flow of
goods and people to Gaza, as well as unimpeded provision and
distribution of humanitarian assistance throughout Gaza.”
The Israeli Cabinet approved an
investigation into the Marmara Affair in an effort to counter
international criticism. It is to be led by a retired Supreme Court
justice, and would include several respected international participants.
The Obama administration, however,
is reportedly saying that the Israeli–appointed investigation is not
good enough to satisfy the international community, or the Obama White
The Israeli and Turkish militaries
have worked closely together for many years. Their bilateral trade at
present stands around $2.6 billion — roughly one percent of Turkey’s
overall trade. Recently Israel completed an upgrade of Turkish tanks
and warplanes worth more than $1 billion.
This predominantly Muslim and
historically secular country has had decades of close military and trade
ties with the US and the Jewish state. And it has traditionally been
Israel’s only Muslim ally.
Turkey was westward-looking, when
it became a member of NATO.
In 2002, the Justice and
Development Party (AKP) of Recep Erdogan came to office. The AKP was
formed out of old Islamist parties but it trod warily in its early years
in office. Previous Islamist governments had been overturned by the
Turkish military, which sees itself as the guardian of Kemal Ataturk’s
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk
was a powerful Turkish army officer, and revolutionary statesman.
Following the defeat of the Ottoman Empire, he led the Turkish National
Movement in a War of Independence. He founded the Republic of Turkey,
and became its first president.
Over the past few years, however,
the AKP has neutralised the military, silenced much of the independent
media, and slowly weakened secularism.
As NATO’s only Muslim member,
Turkey has sought to raise its international profile in recent years.
Positioned close to countries along the Mediterranean, the Persian Gulf,
the Black Sea and the Caspian Sea, where most of the world’s oil and gas
is found, Turkey holds geostrategic value in a conflict-prone region.
It wants to join the European
Union and become a major regional power, shedding the straitjacket of
its Cold War era role as an ally of the West.
But critics caution that Erdogan’s
Islamist-leaning government risks tilting too far in trying to forge
stronger ties with Middle East governments that the West does not trust.
Erdogan is now supporting Iran’s
nuclear program, and is also building relationships with Syria, Lebanon,
Russia and Brazil.
A decade ago, Turkey’s agenda was
liberalisation, European Union membership, and close military
co-operation with Israel. Now its agenda is hostility to the West,
denunciation of Israel and creeping Islamisation.
Recently it has hosted Hamas
visits and its leaders make frequent visits themselves to Iran and
Syria, and Erdogan has joined with Brazil in offering to reprocess
Iran’s nuclear fuel to avoid UN sanctions on Iran.
The way the Turkish administration
has used the Marmara affair to turn its people against Israel was
skilful and speaks of deep planning.
The flotilla tragedy reaped all
kinds of other benefits for global Islamists as well.
Ten years ago, Turkey’s current
behaviour would have been unthinkable. Ankara was Israel’s best friend
in a region where every other neighbour wished, to one degree or
another, the Jewish state’s destruction. Even when Erdogan’s AKP was
elected to power eight years ago, the experts assured us there was no
need to worry.
If anyone had suggested at that
time, that in six years’ time the Turkish PM would be telling
the Israeli President to his face that; “I know very well how you kill
children on beaches,” the opinion would have been dismissed as a
fantasy. But it happened. Erdogan shouted those words to Shimon Peres
at Davos last year.
The breakup of the Israel-Turkey
strategic alliance was triggered by the 22-day action in Gaza in Dec 08
- Jan 09. Now the Marmara affair may have caused irreparable harm
to Israel’s relations with Turkey because so many of those onboard were
The high-profile attempt to break
the Israeli blockade of Gaza, comes as Erdogan is engaged in a major
diplomatic drive to
restore Turkey’s ascendancy in the Middle East and Central Asia.
US Defence Minister Robert Gates
said that the EU’s refusal to accept Turkey as a member is partly to
blame for Ankara’s rapprochement towards Islamic states and its
deteriorating relations with Israel.
THE END OF MILITARY
AND INTELLIGENCE COOPERATION
Israel had counted on Turkey’s
cooperation in containing a nuclear Iran, and may even have entertained
hopes of using Turkish air space for air strikes to knock out the
Islamic republic’s nuclear infrastructure.
It certainly relied on Turkey’s
intelligence service to counter Iran’s clandestine operations in the
region and for keeping track of Islamist operatives.
Israel’s 60 years of secret
military and intelligence cooperation, including the 14 years of a
military cooperation pact with Turkey that was signed in 1996, has now
come to an end.
The co-operation was invaluable
for Israel, and would be at this critical juncture when it could find
itself at war with Iran. But now they see Turkey’s leader supporting
Iran’s right to conduct a nuclear program and offering to help Tehran
get the Americans off its back.
Israel’s loss is compounded by
Erdogan’s success in dominating Turkey’s military, the long time arbiter
of Turkish politics.
Turkey’s generals were the
strongest supporters of the alliance with Israel. Now that Erdogan has
tamed them with a wave of arrests over an alleged coup plot, there seems
to be no prospect of reviving the alliance. Source:
Turkish President Abdullah Gul
said that the Israeli raid had delivered a heavy blow to bilateral ties
and said his country would never forgive its estranged regional ally.
“From now on, Turkish-Israeli ties will never be the same. This incident
has left an irreparable and deep scar” on relations, he said in
televised remarks. The raid “is not an issue that can be forgotten ...
or be covered up ... Turkey will never forgive this attack.”
Ankara has already recalled its
ambassador to Tel Aviv and scrapped joint military exercises with Israel
in an angry response to the raid.
ALLIANCE IS ALARMING
Greg Sheridan, Foreign editor of
The Australian, writes: (June 2/10):
“We may be
witnessing a profound reshaping of the Middle East strategic order, and
therefore the global strategic order.”
says the explosive developments of the last few weeks, primarily the
meteoric rise of a thrusting partnership between the
powers, Turkey and Iran,
have badly rattled Arab capitals, especially when they see the Obama
administration and Netanyahu government immersed in tying themselves and
each other in knots over the format of an inquiry into the Turkish
In the Middle East meanwhile,
events are rushing forward with explosive haste, impelled by the
Turkish-led flotilla for breaking the Gaza blockade and the Israeli
commando raid to intercept it.
The rise of the Turkish-Iranian
alliance has not only thrust America and Israel to the wings of the
Middle East stage, but is deeply alarming Cairo, Riyadh, the Gulf
Emirates and even Syria. They suddenly see PM Erdogan and President
Mahmoud Ahmadinejad dictating the region’s agenda with no one there to
Within days, the balance of power
in the region has been reshuffled to extend way beyond Tehran’s hand on
Hizb’allah’s levers in Beirut and the Palestinian Hamas in
Gaza. Iran has
acquired an important member of NATO as a proactive ally.
TURKEY IS NOW
CALLING FOR A JIHAD AGAINST ISRAEL
Support for Turkey is at an
all-time high in the Arab world. No ruling Arab leader is as popular as
the Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, whose discourse
amounts to calls for a jihad against Israel.
Israel’s relations with Ankara –
military, economic, and tourist (Israelis once flocked to Turkey) – have
been sacrificed on the altar of Turkey’s retrograde aspiration to lead
the Islamic world and establish itself along with Iran as an alternative
to American power. Turkey is once again turning eastwards.
It is difficult to imagine that
Turkey would be engaging in this kind of behaviour if the US had
demonstrated world leadership and not abandoned the field to the likes
Israel will now be closely
examining its relationship with Turkey. Jews in Turkey are now afraid to
leave their homes. Israel has withdrawn the families of its diplomats
out of fear for their safety.
Israel has had excellent relations
with the armed forces of Turkey, but those secular forces have had their
wings clipped by a massive assault against them when several military
officers and others were accused of trying to overthrow Erdogan’s party.
Turkey’s over-the-top behaviour
has Israelis scratching their heads. Do the Turks really want an Iranian
port in Gaza, on the Mediterranean? And for that matter, do the western
countries which have so widely castigated Israel, want that?
Spurned by the EU where it has
applied for membership, and ruled by an Islamist party with delusions of
grandeur, Turkey is determined to lead the Muslim world once more and is
promoting a clash of civilizations in order to compete strategically
with the US. Turkey is no longer a friend, but is not yet an enemy of
the US. It is a “frenemy.”
- source -
Many don’t understand why Turkey
has moved away from the West and into the arms of Islamic Iran,
Hizb’allah and Hamas. The answer is two-fold; first, they
really had no choice for it is prophesied in Ezekiel 38.5; and second,
they have also been convinced that Israel will be defeated this time,
and they want to be on the side they think will win.
Erdogan is now willing to lead the
charge, and we are hearing that Iran and Turkey together will send more
ships to break the Gaza blockade; this time with naval escort. That will
be an act of war.
TRADE FLOURISHES AS
SYRIA BEFRIENDS OLD FOE TURKEY
A warming of once-chilly
Turkish-Syrian ties has unleashed a one-way trade boom. A trade deal
activated two years ago has cut tariffs and reduced smuggling. Visa
requirements were abolished.
Turkey’s popularity in Syria
soared after the Marmara affair on May 31.
“Turkey now has a stake in the
Palestinian cause, and Syria stands to gain,” a diplomat said. “It will
now be more difficult for Israel to launch any military action against
The furore over the flotilla
interception has also deflected attention from Israeli and US pressure
on Damascus over its alleged arms supplies to the Lebanese Shi’ite
Hizb’allah group. - www.news.yahoo.com
God says: “A day of Yahweh is coming … I will gather all the nations to
Jerusalem to fight against it; the city will be captured, the houses
ransacked, and the women raped. Half of the city will go into exile, but
the rest of the people will not be taken from the city.”… “When the
power of the holy people has been broken, all these things will be
completed.” … “At that time they will see the Son of Man coming in a
cloud with power and great glory. When these things begin to take place,
stand up and lift up your heads, because
your redemption is drawing near.”
14:1-2; Daniel 12:7b; Luke 21:27-28)
TURKEY WANTS “ARAB
FREE TRADE ZONE”
June10/10. PM Erdogan wants to
boost trade with neighbours, and has agreed to set up a free trade zone
with three of its Arab neighbours - Syria, Lebanon and Jordan. The aim
is to create a free trade and travel zone to improve economic relations
between Turkey, and the rest of the region.
Turkey remains eager to join the
European Union, but its newly developed relations with the Iran axis,
will not instill confidence in the EU, or in NATO. Turkey’s EU bid has
already stalled over the divided island of Cyprus.
ABBAS DEMANDS ‘BOLD
Palestinian President, Mahmoud
Abbas, accused Israel of “state
terrorism” over the violent
seizure of the Marmara flotilla.
Abbas, who has a personal
terrorist background, and who is head of Fatah and its terrorist
Al-Aqsa Brigades, does not accuse his Hamas enemy of
terrorism. But he cannot refrain from accusing Israel of waging “state
terrorism!” He says ..
“The Palestinian people were
when Israel attacked the Freedom
Flotilla. The Palestinian people and the entire world are confronted
with this terrorism,”
he said. “We saw
against innocent volunteers and we
have seen daily examples of
with the killings and
the expulsions from houses, the confiscation of lands and the siege on
“We ask the world, how long will
this go on? When will this tyranny and occupation end, and when will
Israel respect the freedom of the Palestinian people?”
Abbas hailed Turkey’s harsh
response to the raid on the aid flotilla, and said he will ask US
President Barack Obama during their scheduled meeting in Washington to
take “bold decisions” to change the face of the region, and end the
suffering and the pain and the Israeli occupation of Palestinian land.”
Abbas added that he hoped to see
the Middle East transformed “from a
region of terrorism,
as they call it, to a
region of building and of
peace, and to give an
opportunity for the whole world to participate in the peace process.”
ABBAS’ SHOW OF
June 18/10. The latest is that
Mahmoud Abbas told US envoy George Mitchell that Washington must press
Israel to completely lift its blockade of the Gaza Strip. He stressed
that lifting the blockade would favour a restart of direct negotiations
between Israel and the Palestinians.
Although Fatah, Abbas’
political party, was ousted from Gaza by a violent coup led by Hamas
in mid-2007 that left dozens of Fatah leaders and police
dead; and although there is a continuous conflict between the two
parties; and while Hamas is working to take over the West Bank
also; and while Fatah is arresting Hamas conspirators,
Abbas feels compelled to defend the terror organisation that is
constantly working to destroy him and his party. That’s the price of
Gaza is already a threat to
Fatah as well as to Israel. But much of the world is being convinced
that Hamas is Mother Theresa. Get real, Mr Abbas! The world is
now beginning to back your enemy! The writing is on your wall!
PALESTINIAN OCCUPATION UNJUST”
Israel’s occupation of the
Palestinian territories is a “political injustice,” according to a
leaked Vatican working document for the forthcoming Middle East Synod of
Bishops meeting. “The Israeli occupation of the Palestinian territories
makes daily life difficult for freedom of movement, the economy and
social and religious life.” -
THE MARMARA AFFAIR –
A LESSON FOR ISRAEL
For Israel, the maritime
confrontation was an extremely embarrassing event that played out in a
way no one expected. The sight of naval commandos being clubbed to the
deck as they landed on the Marmara was a shock for Israelis.
The naval commando unit is one of
Israel’s most elite military forces and its exploits are renowned. It
has been extensively used to thwart arms smuggling and terror
operations. Last year it was involved in a long-range action in Sudan to
stop an arms convoy bound from Iran to the Gaza Strip.
The Marmara affair was a
messy operation, however, in the long run the incident may reinforce
Israel’s deterrent image, a keystone of its security structure. Israel
made clear that it would enforce its declared policies - in this case
regarding Gaza - regardless of the price it had to pay in the form of
But a lesson for Israel, one that
is relearned periodically through the years, is that in the Middle East,
at least, a credible
projection of strength
is basic to peace.
Had Israel reacted more forcefully
to previous Hizb’allah provocations, including earlier
cross-border kidnappings of soldiers, peace would likely have been
achieved on the Lebanese border without need of the 2006 war.
If Israel had carried out a
significant incursion into Gaza earlier, Operation Cast Lead
would probably have been unnecessary.
If the Marmara flotilla had
been permitted to reach Gaza, it could have opened the way to regular
maritime shipping, including war material, to the Hamas port. It
also would have shown Israel to be a paper tiger unable to enforce its
own blockade. Paper tigers do not last long in this region.
SO WHAT DOES IT ALL
MEAN TO US?
It means the time is much later
than most of us think! These are extremely dangerous times. As the
apostle Paul foretold:
“Realize this, that in the last days
perilous times will come.” (2 Timothy 3:1)
Turkey’s alliance with Iran is a
deepening threat to world peace; but this alliance is just one part of a
much wider alliance which is growing, and includes Syria, Lebanon, Gaza,
Russia, Pakistan, North Korea, China, Brazil, Venezuela and several
other South American and Caribbean nations, Central Asian nations, as
well as most of the Arab world, and African nations, including Libya,
Zimbabwe, Sudan, Somalia and Yemen.
True, this is not yet one great
solid military block. All these parties have their own goals; and there
are many issues in between the various constituents of this potential
“confederation.” But they are all sharing a radical, anti-Western and
Also alarming is the fact that
leaders of the “free world,” under a guise of concern for the
“desperately suffering Gazans,” are now siding with, and legitimatizing
the Hamas regime which until recently was regarded as a terrorist
For the ordinary Palestinian
people who are truly suffering under the Hamas regime, we can
truly feel sympathy. They need to be
from that oppressive
terrorist regime. Of course, popular Hamas was voted into power,
just like many popular Western leaders who have ultimately betrayed and
disillusioned their electorates.
But it is not merely tiny Gaza
that is now at issue.
Day by day, the nation of Israel
is finding itself more and more alone. The anti-Semitism and hypocrisy
of the nations are growing, and even in the US, the present
administration is deliberately missing the opportunity to stand for what
is right. Now more than ever, Israel needs friends; courageous, genuine
and loyal friends.
Israel will very soon be forced
into one more major conflict with its neighbours, and that will be
horrific for all involved. But a regional conflict is not my main
concern. What is ahead is a
nuclear world war
– a tribulation war
that is coming on the whole world as a judgment upon the nations because
of their rejection of God’s Anointed One – the Messiah – Y’shua – Jesus
Christ. For the nations today are gripped by anti-Yahweh, anti-Israel,
and anti-Christ fever.
“The kings of the earth take their stand, and the rulers take counsel
together against YHWH and against His Anointed - His Messiah: ‘Let us
break Their chains,’ they say, ‘and throw off Their fetters!’”
Regarding Abraham, and the nation
of Israel, Yahweh the Almighty has said:
“I will make you into a great nation, and I will bless you, and make
your name great; and you will be a blessing. And
I will bless those who bless you, and I will
curse him who curses you. And in you all the families of the
earth shall be blessed.’” (Genesis 12:2-3)
Since Barack Obama turned against
God’s Word, and against God’s plans for His covenant Land, Israel, the
United States has suffered the greatest environmental catastrophe in its
history. And the BP oil disaster is far from over. Many scientists are
afraid of where this awful tragedy is going. Mr Obama, you haven’t seen
I am not trying to be a prophet
when I say that the US will one day be split into two by a massive
earthquake in California. American scientists have been predicting that
for many years. (Another “small” quake - 5.9 – rattled California today
as I type - 15 June.
And it is not a big surprise that
the European Union (including Britain), which has become glaringly
anti-Israel, has fallen into a massive financial crisis that is
threatening to split the EU into two. And it was not a surprise that all
Europe was seriously affected by the massive Iceland volcano that
covered the Continent with dangerous ash, and grounded thousands of
Alarming events are racing ahead
in all of our nations, causing people to ask,
“What’s the World coming
My reader, it all means that we
are in the end times, and the climax of the age draws nearer every day.
There are two pieces of good news
I leave with you.
“THE GOOD NEWS
... is that the Messiah died for our sins, and that He was
buried, and that He was raised on the third day according to the
Scriptures.” (1 Cor 15:1-4). And, “God has made this Y’shua whom you
crucified, both Master and Messiah.” (Acts 2:36)
“If you confess with your mouth Y’shua as Lord - your Master
and Saviour, and believe in your heart
that God raised Him from the dead, you will be saved ... for whoever
will call upon the Name of Y’shua
the Heavenly Master will be saved.” (Romans 10:9-13)
If you have not received Y’shua,
Jesus, as your own personal Saviour, I urge you to believe in Him today.
Give your life to Him now. Tomorrow may be too late!
THE GOOD NEWS FOR THOSE WHO ARE “IN CHRIST”
The Saviour’s imminent return
“Let not your heart be troubled; believe in God, believe also in Me. ‘In
My Father’s House are many dwelling places; if it were not so, I would
have told you, for I am going there to prepare a place for you.
And if I go and prepare a place for you, I
will come again and receive you to Myself, so that you also
may be where I am.” (John 14:1-3)
“Because you have kept the word of My endurance (My endurance – My
sacrifice, enduring all the way to death on the cross for your
redemption), I also will keep you from
the hour of trial which is
about to come upon the whole world, to try those who live on the earth.
I am coming quickly.” (Revelation 3:10-11)
“For the Master Himself will descend from
heaven with a shout, with the voice of the archangel, and
with the trumpet call of God. Then the dead in Christ - those who
died with faith in the Messiah - shall rise first. Then we, the
living believers who remain, will simultaneously be
caught up together with them in the clouds, to
meet the Master in the air. And so we will be with the Master
for ever. Therefore comfort and encourage one another with these words.”
(1 Thessalonians 4:16-18)
A final word from Scripture to all
“Therefore be careful how you walk,
not as unwise, but as wise, redeeming
and making the most of the time
- buying up each opportunity, because the days are evil.
So then do not be foolish, but understand what the will of YHWH the LORD
is. Do not get drunk with wine, for that leads to unrestrained
behaviour, to a breakdown of morals and to wastage. Instead be
filled with the Holy Spirit,
speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs; singing
and making songs of praise in your heart to the LORD; always giving
thanks to God our Father for everything, in the Name of our
Master, Y’shua the Anointed.” (Ephesians 5:15-20)
Amen! And God bless
you and keep you
at peace in the
Messiah in these crucial times!
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