Israel and the Flotilla: It’s a Clusterfuck, Sir

A public relations disaster?

While we don’t yet know all the facts, the apparent killing ofat least 10 people aboard a ship bound for Gaza with humanitarian aid already has all the hallmarks of a massive public-relations disaster.

It does sound like there might have been some kind of violent response
from the activists on the boat, and the Israeli military is claiming
its forces encountered “live fire and light weaponry including knives
and clubs.”

But the international response has been swift. Turkey hasrecalled its ambassador and warned of “consequences,”
U.N. Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon has called for an investigation,
European governments have expressed shock, and I imagine thousands of
outside observers like me are wondering just what possessed the Israeli
government to risk such an outcome when it sent naval commandoes to
board the vessel.

AsHaaretz‘s Amos Harelputs it,
“The damage that Israel has caused itself internationally can hardly be
exaggerated.” Harel warns that the rumored presence of an Israeli Arab
activist among the victims could lead to riots and perhaps even “a
third intifada.”

Another liberal Haaretz commentator, Bradley Burston, comments, “We are no longer
defending Israel. We are now defending the siege. The siege itself is
becoming Israel’s Vietnam.”

A public relations disaster. It’s also an actual disaster for, you know, the DEAD PEOPLE.

And while I’m not of the school of thought that nobody should move for fear of pissing somebody else off, you do get to a certain point where you say, okay, we’re now in a place where we can talk about if rocks and kitchen knives are really enough of a threat that we’re gonna isolate ourselves from the entire world by engaging in piracy. Because you look up the definition of NOT HELPING YOUR OWN CAUSE in the dictionary and this sort of shit is right there in color.

Can it be long before a flood of stories about why Palestinians hate everyone so much?

Our commentary, natch, is catastrophically fucked, and we are all anti-Semites now:

Hanging over the administration’s deliberations are thegratuitous spats with Netanyahu
that Obama has blundered into. Twice the president chose to launch
pointless and unwinable battles to freeze Israeli settlement
construction in Jerusalem. These served only to complicate his Middle
East diplomacy, while alienating Israel’s supporters in Congress and
the Democratic Party.

Just last week, Obama chose to side against Israel
in the final deliberations of the Non-Proliferation Treaty review
conference. In pursuit of one of the president’s most cherished causes,
the United States accepted language calling on Israel to join the NPT
and supporting a conference in 2013 on a nuclear-free Middle East.
Netanyahu’s government was left alone in its opposition.

Gratuitous spats. Yes. Pointless. Unwinnable. And why are they pointless and unwinnable? Because the Washington Post says so, and its editors know that Israel is gonna do whatever the fuck it wants to do, as, really, is its right, but the majority of Congress will either yawn because hey, that’s how it works, or cower in fear from the Washington Post calling them anti-Semitic.

The majority of the American public will be confused because peoplemistakenly thought they were allowed to disagree about this shit, yet the diversity of opinion at the top is nonexistent. And so it goes.

A.

10 thoughts on “Israel and the Flotilla: It’s a Clusterfuck, Sir

  1. Dan says:

    See also the inability to suggest the response to priests raping children shouldn’t be to circle the wagons, deny everything and make similar charges of bias against the accusers. I’m a good Catholic boy and all, but it certainly seems like the various guardians of respectable opinion for all things religious could render their most valuable service to humankind by being voluntarily lobotomized.

  2. virgotex says:

    We have fetishized the construct of ‘balance’

  3. Adrastos says:

    Gratuitous spats? Sounds like fancy footwear. The current Israeli government is, quite simply, far right and far gone.

  4. Jude says:

    I don’t know why we’ve eaten the Israeli’s shit sandwich forso long.
    Wait, I do know. When you have 80% of the Congress in your pocket, you can serve those tortas de mierda all fuckin’ day.

  5. mothra says:

    Yeah, the Israeli government knows it can control the news over here, so that the population here will buy the story that the people on the boat were actually attacking Israel, that they’d been given several options to dock and have their goods delivered, etc., etc., etc. So they’ll make sure their biggest friend on the block is misinformed and duly cowed into supporting Israel no matter what.
    Grrrr, grrrrrr, grrrrr.

  6. BlackSheep1 says:

    So did anybody check out what Ha’aretz has to say about this?

  7. MapleStreet says:

    Admittedly, I’m concerned about “false flag” events.
    But if Israel disrupts a humanitarian mission, it proves evidence that the goal of Israel is to slowly starve out the Palestineans (?genocide?).
    As a practical matter, this also drives a wedge between us and the Arab world. Our National Security demands that we treat the Arab world as people. Admittedly, the Arab world may use the Palestinians as pawns, but we can’t let this be a dividing force.

  8. pansypoo says:

    some israeli said the victimized boat, the peace activists were trying to lynch them.
    how many commandos were lynched?
    and israel was getting away with the ghettos.

  9. evil is evil says:

    The murders actually make sense to the Jews.
    They use the Old Testament as an instruction manual for the proper way to take back Israel.
    They actually were kicked out of the area three times.
    The Babylonian Captivity is in the instruction manual. Kill all of the resident nonjewish men, enslave the women and children.
    The return from Egypt is in the instruction manual. Kill all of the resident nonjewish men, enslave the women and children.
    1900 years after they pissed off the Romans and got kicked out, they are back again. Will they follow the program and start killing all of the resident nonjewish men?
    I notice that the wingers are supporting Israel. “Christians?” I don’t think so. I think that anyone who only reads the Old Testament should properly be described as Jewish.

  10. hoppy says:

    I’m hoping the US will decline to veto the UN Security Council resolution coming up soon. And, that resolution will call for an end to the siege of Gaza, and sanctions against Israel for piracy and war crimes.
    Let’s refer to this as “tough love”. Maybe Schumer and Boxer, et al will be able to go along with it that way.

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