Israeli troops have boarded the Rachel Corrie, an Irish vessel participating in the “Freedom Flotilla” and purporting to bring humanitarian aid to Gaza. Thankfully, the pro-Hamas activists on board did not initiate violence, and the ship is being taken peacefully to Ashdod, where the cargo will be inspected before being forwarded to Gaza.
The incident has brought Rachel Corrie’s name back into the news. Time, for example, offers a tribute to her here. Corrie was a young American woman who foolishly got herself killed in Gaza in 2003 by kneeling in the path of a bulldozer. Since then, she has been the subject of much adulation. In fact, however, she was not so much a human rights activist, as she is portrayed in the press, as a hater who was closely allied with terrorists. In this photo, taken a month before her death, she was burning a fake American flag at a Hamas rally:
At The Corner, Mark Steyn brings our attention to this piece by Tom Gross called “The Forgotten Rachels.” Written in 2005, it is even more timely today:
Rachel Thaler, aged 16, was blown up at a pizzeria in an Israeli shopping mall. She died after an 11-day struggle for life following a suicide bomb attack on a crowd of teenagers on 16 February 2002.
Even though Thaler was a British citizen, born in London, where her grandparents still live, her death has never been mentioned in a British newspaper.
Rachel Thaler is not the only forgotten Rachel. It’s a powerful piece; read it all. Steyn adds:
Rachel Corrie’s diaries have been published in book form, turned into a hit London play at the Royal Court, and her name has been cited in The Guardian alone hundreds of times (“Remembering Rachel”, “Rachel’s War”, “Rachel Corrie: A True Martyr”, “The Lonesome Death Of Rachel Corrie”, “Rachel’s Words Are A Spur To Action”, etc).
By contrast, Rachel Thaler was a British subject. Yet not a single British journalist has ever mentioned her, profiled her, interviewed her parents or other British relatives, or published her diary in a Fleet Street newspaper – except for a single solitary mention by the great (Jewish) comedienne Maureen Lipman noting that nobody ever mentioned her, or the other victims of Palestinian terrorism.
In some respects, at least, we are witnessing a return to the 1930s. And for the most part, our mainstream media are cheering it on.
UPDATE: Another Racheal here, in a story that came out this morning–in this case, a widow. Is the story unrelated? Not really.