They’re just on the other side:
Upon boarding the ships, the soldiers encountered fierce resistance from the passengers who were armed with knives, bats and metal pipes. The soldiers used non-lethal measures to disperse the crowd. The activists, according to an IDF report, succeeded in stealing two handguns from soldiers and opened fire, leading to an escalation in violence.
Al Jazeera on Monday broadcasted footage from the Gaza flotilla’s lead vessel, the Mavi Marmara, showing Israeli Navy commandos boarding the ship. Helicopters could also be seen flying overhead.
“It was like a well-planned lynch,” one IDF officer said. “These people were anything but peace activists.”
As Claudia Rossett notes, this isn’t about peace, or freedom, or humanitarian aid. It’s about making a terrorist-supporting political statement, with the added frisson of killing Jews.
[Update a few minutes later]
In a later search aboard the Marmara, soldiers found caches of bats, clubs, knives, and slingshots used by the rioters ahead of the IDF takeover. It appeared the activists were well prepared for a fight…
…It appears that the error in planning the operation was the estimate that passengers were indeed political activists and members of humanitarian groups who seek a political provocation, but would not resort to brutal violence.
They won’t make that mistake again.
[Late evening update]
A photomontage of “peace” activists.
And it’s time for Israel to stop playing Mr. Nice Guy.
It certainly hasn’t bought them much.