The Palestinian aid charade (updated with a golden oldie)

You probably missed the story of the latest attempt to break the Israeli naval blockade of Gaza. The blockade prevents the resupply of Hamas terrorists with the tools of their murderous trade. Attempts to break the blockade are held out as acts of pro-Palestinian activism, but they are at best stupidity in action.

In this week’s episode, the “activists” aboard a Swedish vessel failed to punch through the blockade when Israeli commandos boarded the vessel, searched the ship and brought it to an Israeli port. The foreign activists were detained and are being deported. (I am borrowing from the account of the episode here by Washington Post Jerusalem bureau chief William Booth.)

Now here’s the beauty part. Israel denied that the vessel even contained humanitarian aid. Asked to provide evidence of the aid, Freedom Flotilla Coalition member Ann Ighe sent this photograph:


William Booth reports:

The Gaza activitists said the larger cardboard box contains a solar panel, donated by a Swedish magazine, ETC, which also runs an “environmentally-friendly electricity company.” The panel was bound for Al-Shifa hospital in Gaza City.

Ighe said the Swedish Association of Midwives also donated a nebulizer, a machine used to inhale medicines, often used to calm asthma attacks. That is the small cardboard box.

Booth declines to judge the merits of the charade, but he gives Israelis the last word:

Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu’s office wrote a letter to the activists, suggesting they would have been better off going to Syria and not Gaza.

“There is no blockade on the Gaza Strip,” the letter read.

“There is no humanitarian crisis in Gaza,” [Defense Minister] Yaalon told Israeli diplomatic reporters.

The situation in Gaza “isn’t pleasant,” Yaalon conceded, but added that “if they were to decide to export strawberries from Gaza instead of rockets, the situation would be entirely different.”

At Commentary, Jonathan Tobin exercises his critical faculties in “Gaza activists brought hate, not aid.”

UPDATE: A reader suggests that we revisit the evergreen classic “We Con the World” (video below).