1. Attacking a humanitarian convoy in international waters, for the purposes of maintaining a regime of collective punishment of a civilian population, is not only legitimate, it is positively “estimable”.
So concluded the official Israeli inquiry in the flotilla massacre, which just cleared the army of serious wrongdoing and praised the conduct of the troops involved (including, presumably, the soldier who shot an 19-year-old five times at point-blank). The inquiry was chaired by Maj. Gen. Giora Eiland, best known for his advocacy of collective punishment in Lebanon (Eiland argued [.pdf] that, in the event of another Lebanon war, Israel should pursue “the elimination of the Lebanese military, the destruction of the national infrastructure, and intense suffering among the population” on the grounds that “the destruction of homes and infrastructure, and the suffering of hundreds of thousands of people are consequences that can influence Hizbollah’s behavior more than anything else”).
2. Participating in a humanitarian convoy attempting to defend civilians against a regime of illegal collective punishment is proof that one is a traitor, and punishable, as a first step, by the stripping of one’s passport.
The most right-wing and thuggish Knesset in Israel’s history continues to charm:
The Knesset revoked privileges from MK Hanin Zoabi Tuesday, due to her participation in the Gaza aid flotilla in May. A majority of 34 MKs voted in favor of invalidating her diplomatic passport and revoking her right to receive funding for legal expenses. The Balad MK spoke at a hearing before the vote and said the Knesset’s conduct proved democracy was nonexistent in Israel.
Two MKs were removed from the plenum for conduct deemed unbecoming. MK Anastassia Michaeli (Yisrael Beiteinu), who had previously attacked Zoabi on the stand, now presented her with an Iranian passport bearing her picture. She was thereafter removed from the plenum.
“Conduct deemed unbecoming” is a euphemism for organised, cross-partisan racist harassment. Here was an earlier Knesset meeting in which MK Zoabi attempted to take the stand:
Also, note the “objection” of the MK from Kadima, supposedly Israel’s “centrist” alternative. He doesn’t oppose the persecution of one of Israel’s few Palestinian MKs on the grounds that it amounts to despicable racist victimization, but because “the damage she will do as a movement [sic] outside parliament ... is inestimably greater than the damage she can do from inside”. Clearly, then, the idea that nonviolently resisting the collective punishment of a civilian population is a punishable offence enjoys nearly unanimous support in the Israeli mainstream.
So now you know.