In his online analysis piece ‘Justice for victims of Gaza flotilla raid?’, Rodney Dixon QC offers up a tendentious account of what he describes as a peaceful mercy mission attacked with brutal force by Israeli commandos.
According to the report by a UN panel, the flotilla organisers acted recklessly in attempting to breach the naval blockade. And it concluded that ‘there exist serious questions about the conduct, true nature and objectives of the flotilla organisers, particularly IHH [the group behind the flotilla].’
The UN said that passengers were ‘cutting iron bars from the guard rails of the ship, opening fire hoses, donning life or bullet-proof vests and gas masks, and assuming pre-agreed positions in anticipation of an attack’.
Far from being innocent victims of aggression, they were itching for a fight with the Israelis. Finally, the restoration of diplomatic ties between Israel and Turkey is something to be lauded not bemoaned by Mr Dixon.
Not only will good relations ensure there is no repeat of this episode, but it has already led to the shipment of thousands of tonnes of aid to Gaza via the port of Ashdod. As it turns out, sensible diplomacy delivers far more aid than politically motivated flotillas.
Richard Verber, senior vice-president, Board of Deputies of British Jews, London NW5