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Was Israel right to board the Gaza flotilla?

13:46 UK time, Monday, 31 May 2010

Nine activists died after Israeli commandos boarded an aid flotilla that was en route to Gaza on Monday. What is your reaction?

The six-ship convoy, carrying 10,000 tonnes of aid, had been due to arrive in Gaza on Monday. Israel had repeatedly said it would stop the boats, calling them a "provocation intended to delegitimise Israel".

Following the activists' deaths, thousands of protesters have demonstrated against Israel in Turkey, while several countries have summoned Israeli ambassadors to seek an explanation.

UN chief Ban Ki-moon said he was "shocked by reports of killings and injuries". The UN Security Council issued a statement calling for a "prompt, impartial, credible and transparent" inquiry.

Another aid ship, the MV Rachel Corrie, is currently headed for Gaza in defiance of the Israeli blockade.

What is your reaction to this incident? How should the international community respond? What impact will this have on Israeli/Palestinian relations?

This debate is now closed. Thank you for your comments.


Page 1 of 68

  • Comment number 1.

    Is anyone still surprised by Israel's actions?

    They have a habit of flouting international law and continue to do so.

  • Comment number 2.

    More shameful behaviour from Israel. This is an act of piracy. The international community should condemn this act with the same vigour that it has condemned North Korea.

    Surely the time has already passed to begin an international boycott of Israeli goods and services? If our governments continue to appease these warmongers, it will have to be ordinary people who take action to strike the Israelis where it hurts most - in their pockets.

    Personally, I have not knowingly bought Israeli produce for many years and I call upon all right-thinking people to do the same. Don't fall for the line about a boycott impacting the Palestinians - this situation needs to be brought to a head now so that these people can see that the international community stands for justice, not repression.

  • Comment number 3.

    I am disgusted in the violent way the Israelis took the unarmed aid convoy. I am even more disgusted in the apparent double standards where Israel is concerned. When is the United Nations going to take a stronger stance on Israels abuses? They've sanctioned invasions in other countries with far less provocation.

    It is about time that Israel is reigned in & called to account for their military actions in Gaza, their continuing illegal program of expansion, their human rights abuses of the Palestinians & their nuclear weapons. I find it very difficult to comprehend why Israel is allowed to get away with all this yet we invade the likes of Iraq on far less evidence.

  • Comment number 4.

    The fact that it happened in international waters is the main concern. The Israeli's have censored their own reporters who were on the boats and are of course blaming Hamas for this. I know European doctors and nurses, Authors, Journalists aren't the best in the world but I don't quite think they are in the league of Hamas.

    An act of Piracy and quite frankly an act of stupidity on their part and of the people who charged armed commandos with sticks and bars.

    Tragedy that could have been avoided. Isn't that always the way?

  • Comment number 5.

    I think we just don't know enough yet to make any condemning remarks against either side. At the moment, it seems to be a matter if 'my word vs yours'.

    What I would point out, however, is that Israel has a history of flouting the rules in favour of their own thuggish demands.

  • Comment number 6.

    No. And Turkey, The UN and interested rights group should start looking at ways of bringing Israel and her personnel involved in this acts of piracy and murders to accountability.

  • Comment number 7.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 8.

    Israel attacked a ship in international waters, apparently shooting indiscriminately enough to would dozens of unarmed civilians and kill at least 10. Pretending it was self defence is simply not believable. The international community should suspend diplomatic and trade ties with Israel, as it's obviously a rogue regime that does what it will to those unfortunate enough to be under it's power.

  • Comment number 9.

    Almost every aspect of this incident defies belief.

    The Israelis cry self-defence, complaining about the fact that the activists on the boat were armed and intent on violence. Unless I have misunderstood, it was Israeli commandos who dropped onto the ships, in full combat gear, fully armed. The assault also took place in international waters. The aggression came unequivocally from the Israelis (no surprise there.) Their defence of their actions would be laughable if it wasn't disgusting given the events which have unfolded.

    The Israelis also say that the activists were told that they could be escorted to an Israeli port and the aid delivered to Gaza. Can they explain therefore why much more aid is not allowed through or, preferably, why the barbaric blockade cannot lifted?

    All the proposed sanctions threatened against Iran should be put into place immediately against Israel, the only true aggressors in the Middle East.

  • Comment number 10.

    Israel is protecting itself at the expense of lives of poor Palestinians, who need food, gas, medicine and other necessities. It is long overdue that the United Stated stop blindly supporting Israel and start thinking objectively with respect to the Israel/Palestine situation. The international community should not tolerate such bold and impudent actions by one of its members. There should be consequences for Israel and their prejudice government.

  • Comment number 11.

    I am not anti-semetic and have supported Israel on many a time, however, armed forces boarding a ship in INTERNATIONAL waters is nothing more than piracy! Then to claim that the ships were loaded with arms is absolutely ludicrous!!! Surely, any ships leaving any harbour to take aid to a foreign company is inspected by customs for one and the organisers for another. It is OBVIOUS that they they realise that they have overstepped the mark and are now trying to justify their actions!

  • Comment number 12.

    The answer to this outrageous act by Israel, is for the USA (which funds it) to withdraw all financial and military aid. That would soon sort the ongoing problem out. But we all know that the USA has not got the guts to do that - it hasn't acted in response to previous atrocities and it will be no different either this time nor the next. In effect the USA is the second state of Israel.

  • Comment number 13.

    Interesting legal question arises. Israel claims self-defence because, they say, they were attacked when they boarded the aid vessels. BUT if they boarded in international waters, surely those on the aid ships were entitled to resist the boardings with reasonable force. And as the boarding parties carried deadly weapons would it not be reasonable for the passengers and crews of the aid vessels to perceive their lives were at risk, and confront that risk - as best they could - with deadly force?

  • Comment number 14.

    In view of this international piracy on the high seas, where are the UK and USA leaders condemning these murders?

  • Comment number 15.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 16.

    It's too early to say what happened exactly other than Al Jazeera were on board documenting the whole indicent and Israel alrady had Mark Regev and Ayalon set up for interviews indicating that they knew this would happen.

    What we do know is that Israeli commandos siezed the boats in international waters which can be interpretted as piracy, allowing the people on board every right to defend themselves which includes trying to wrestle weapons from said attackers. It must also be important to note that Gazan waters are not Israeli waters either since this blockade is illegal thus voiding any legitimacy that Israel may had in justifying their actions.

    By all counts this aid represented roughly 70% of the weekly aid being delivered to Gaza therefore i would question why Israel decided to carry out such a politically destructive execution? Why were live weaponry taken on board at all?

    The cynic in me thinks that this may have been planned as an excuse to avoid peace talks in America tomorrow. It will be interesting to see what the US says about this mess.

    My thoughts go out to the families of those who died trying to help a besieged country.

  • Comment number 17.

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  • Comment number 18.

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  • Comment number 19.

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  • Comment number 20.

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  • Comment number 21.

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  • Comment number 22.

    Typical Israeli behaviour, arrogant and petty. The armed forces of this nation have attacked an aid shipment to a country in dire need. I hope Israel gets everything it deserves from these actions. A worldwide blockade and boycott of Israel would be a good start.

  • Comment number 23.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 24.

    "Israel has attacked a ship which is carrying 10,000 tonnes of aid with a white flag, killing 19 innocent ppl".....

    Yes, Israel is in the right way !!!!!

  • Comment number 25.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 26.

    Obama can't meet Netanyahu now. Even then, the US Congress is beholden to Israel on such a level as to be completely blind to the sort of signals that supporting a government that carries out these actions sends.

    The sooner the US breaks off with Israel the better, although the chances of that are exactly zero.

  • Comment number 27.

    "Was Israel right to board the Gaza flotilla?"

    Surely a better question would be "Why is Israel allowed to continually flout international law? "

    How can attacking a peaceful mission to supply aid to oppressed Palestinians be right?

    The real problem is nothing will be done about it by hypocritical western nations barring a few muted objections.

  • Comment number 28.

    Way, way too far, Israel.

  • Comment number 29.

    Does the BBC intend to interview crew members/activists on board the vessel?

  • Comment number 30.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 31.

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  • Comment number 32.

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  • Comment number 33.

    My opinion regarding this matter would never make it past the moderator.

  • Comment number 34.

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  • Comment number 35.

    This may cause World War 3. You see what modern society is like.

  • Comment number 36.

    The actions of the Israeli military is simply "BARBARIC" at the very least and cannot be justified in any way or form by the Israeli government.It is time for Israel to wake up to the reality that the world is sick and tired of hearing the same old excuses for killing unarmed civilians and this time inside "International Waters".These actions are an insult to the world community and sadly it has lost the only trusted friend (Turkey) it had in the region and it would be true to say that Israel needs Turkey more than Turkey needing Israel.Shame on the UN for turning a blind eye to years of Israel's barbaric acts.

  • Comment number 37.

    At 2:50pm on 31 May 2010, Markyg35 wrote:

    "Yet Israel is condemned for defending its borders."

    Borders that are not recognised by the international community.

  • Comment number 38.

    True face of Israel.

  • Comment number 39.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 40.

    No they were not right. It shames their people.

  • Comment number 41.

    All I know is if Iran had done the same thing, the US and its allies would be screaming bloody murder.

  • Comment number 42.

    Is there anyone alive in this planet who can stop Israel from committing this inhumane act. They just do whatever they want there is just no one to stop them.

  • Comment number 43.

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  • Comment number 44.

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  • Comment number 45.

    It appears every other country has to give permission before aid is allowed in. But Israel is expected to permit a provocative act (no genuine NGO acts as the Turkish boats did).
    The boats, with a plethora of publicity to make sure the world was watching , deliberately provoked a a situation in which Israel had to act.
    What the hell else did they expect ? That Israel placidly allows them to pass by ? It is obvious that Turkey has, little by little, over the past year or two created confrontational situations with Israel. Is this evidence that those turks who say their country is becomimg more radicalised are right ? The Turkish government is certainly more friendly with Iran.
    I wonder what the USA thinks now ? They wanted Turkey in Europe. This stupid provocation will have knock on effects for that wish.

  • Comment number 46.

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  • Comment number 47.

    If Iran did this, the war drums would be singing out loud all around our ears by now. What do we get when Israel does? A sickening silence...

  • Comment number 48.

    This time it's the arrogant Israelis, it seems, but both Israel and Hamas do thuggish stuff. Both think they are right to do so. Both are moronically wrong. They have to talk, talk, talk: the only chance there is for peace. Pile up the pressure on both of these crude, eye-for-an-eye, sick "authorities".

  • Comment number 49.

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  • Comment number 50.

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  • Comment number 51.

    31. At 3:02pm on 31 May 2010, mtgibby wrote:
    Israel has a right to defend itself against those attempting to aid terrorists groups (HAMAS) who are trying to destroy Israel.


    When you start treating any person like a terrorist, suddenly they will start behaving like terrorists.

    You may need to be reminded that "One man's Terrorist is Another man's Freedom Fighter".

  • Comment number 52.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 53.

    It is outrageous that your reporter-anchor woman on BBC News dares to suggest that it is illegal for the aid convoy to try to break the internationally condemned and illegal blockade of Gaza which has been ruled a crime against humanity - this proves your bias against the beleaguered people of Palestine - As a British Citizen who pays a TV licence to keep you afloat I demand you put an end to this outrageous bias.

  • Comment number 54.

    It was a civilian ship with humanitarian aid! It was meant to help people who are suffering!

    I would expect more sensitivity from a nation which suffered so much in the past but once again I am disappointed by Israel. In Greece, my country, there are monuments to remind the suffering of Israeli people during WWII.

    What is nobler than people, among them Turks and Greeks, cooperating to aid the people in Gaza who are in need? Still Israel decided to shed more blood, those of activists, showing once again the monster which is hidden in human nature...

    I am ashamed on their behalf.

  • Comment number 55.

    The Israelis have released several stories for how these unarmed civillians came to be murdered. The most far-fetched is that the civillians managed to steal firearms from the "special forces" and the israelis defended themselves hah thats a comedy.

    As for fire arms being on the boat does anyone reading this believe that mossad did not supervise the loading of this boat and not have members on it?

    Israel really messed up this time. Lets hope that we can see a bit of justice in this corrupt game we call politics

  • Comment number 56.

    When it comes to Gaza strip Israel is too paranoid even to allow flowers to go there with out the right to intercept/check and use the right of force at the point of their choice.All these is possible because US with all it's power is in no position to intervene and call the spade a spade.Sad reality.

  • Comment number 57.

    "These fools attacked armed troops, and they paid with their lives."

    Oh come on, didn't you blush when you wrote that? It reminds me of people attacking policemens' boots with their heads, or Jews having "provoked" the Nazis.

  • Comment number 58.

    I am non political and not religious,why does the international community allow Israel to act in such a barbaric way? My view of what goes on in the world is maybe cynical and jaded but I cant see what Israel hopes to gain. How many have been killed by these rockets that the terrorist Palestinians have fired into Israel and how many have died in Gaza as a result of Israeli actions? I hear constant references to Jewish losses at the hands of the Nazis during the 2nd World war but what do they think they are doing now? This is the 21st century not the middle ages. You reap what you sow.

  • Comment number 59.

    I am not in the least supprised by these murders, which lets face it they are!

    I am not surprised by the claims that it was self defence, as we have heard it all before.

    I am however interested in the response that "the powers that be" will give.

    We know the Arab states will condemn the murders and rightly so.

    I assume the Useless UN will condemn but probebly come out with a statement to appease the Israelies by saying something like " the aid ship should not have gone in the first place". We all know the chance of any action by the UN is non coming and even if by some miracle it does do we honestly think Israel will accept it or just flaunt it like all the other resolutions its been violating over the past decades.

    What im waiting to hear is from Mr Obama and also my own priminister Mr Cameron, it will be very interesting to see how they can defend this at least lay the blame elsewhere, may be it's the fault of Hamas, if they did not take over the gaza strip in the first place this would never of happened....

    Either way all the rational people of the world can do is pray that the world see sense and realises that all israel is hell bent on doing is holding onto the land they stole and will kill anybody who gets in there way, no matter who. As has been suggested boycott all Israeli goods and show your outrage at this action in a peaceful manner a manner in which Israel claim they want to live. They certainly proved that by these actions.

  • Comment number 60.

    Indiscriminate violence directed toward civilians by Zionist pirates. Israel needs to answer for its crimes but of course they will continue to disregard international law until the western world denounces its actions.

  • Comment number 61.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 62.

    The Israeli Government know that they can break any laws they like because the USA will always veto any sanctions against them at the UN Security Council. The Zionist lobby is so strong in the US that no president can stand up to it, including Obama. It really is a case of the tail wagging the dog: on Middle East policy the US administration carries out policies which benefit Israel, not the US.

    It is time for Europe and the UK to finally break ranks with the US on Israel and introduce sanctions against Israel unilaterally. Unless they start obeying international law and fully sign-up to the Nuclear Non-Proliferation Treaty we should cut all trade and stop recognising Israel as a legitimate state.

  • Comment number 63.

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  • Comment number 64.

    I see this as a potentially very worrying development. If the West doesn’t bring Israel into line then there is a good chance the Arab states will finally lose patience & sort them out themselves. As for Israel/Palestine relations, if you lived next to a belligerent, aggressive neighbour who had the support of much larger bullies would you have any relationship left to speak of? I doubt it! Many who had sympathy for the plight of Israel have lost all respect for them.

  • Comment number 65.

    There had better be some proper coverage by the BBC on this interviewing the passengers on the boat and not just news coverage detailing the israeli spokespersons statement and speculation from an "expert"

  • Comment number 66.

    This without doubt is utterly outrageous, irrespective of motives or warnings, this action by Israel is actually piracy upon the high sea, as the action was in international waters. Shame on Israel for letting itself join the ranks of North Korea, and Somali Pirates. The question is what are the international community to do with this as this act of murder, in international water’s it must not be swept under the political carpet.

  • Comment number 67.

    I find it unbelievable that people show disbelief at what has happend with the Gaza aid convoy in the mediteranean.Israel has done what it always does,disregard any international or humanetarian law,use disproportionate force,kill unarmed innocent people and then hide behind lies.If it is not sending murder squads to murder apponents in another country using fake passports,it send commandos to commit acts of pirecy and murder in INTERNATIONAL WATERS.Israel could have waited untill these ships had crossed into its own terrotorial waters and then sent in its troops,but what it has done is once more put two fingures up to the International Laws.Shame on Israels supporters who have let her become the monster it is today.

  • Comment number 68.

    I have just watched full news reports on Gaza Flotilla 10 Israelis were killed if no weapons how were heavily armed crack troops killed?hiding again amongst innocents weapons in Gaza hidden in Mosques and next to schools to maximise bad publicity if bombed.I would condemn if this attack was as stated but Israel allows lots of aid into Gaza Hamas cannot lose weapons arrive or good publicity if attacks can be made to look bad for Israel we would be inundated with weapons if it were here becasue our leaders are a toothless laughing stock who do not care for own citizens Israel puts its people first

  • Comment number 69.

    So called humanitarian groups are often fronts for extremists.
    I would like to draw your attention to the following document.
    It is worth a read and might make those of you, who think that
    this was just an aid convoy, think again.

    [Unsuitable/Broken URL removed by Moderator]

  • Comment number 70.

    ref #26
    Dave wrote:
    Obama can't meet Netanyahu now. Even then, the US Congress is beholden to Israel on such a level as to be completely blind to the sort of signals that supporting a government that carries out these actions sends.

    (He would supporting the same fight against Islamic terrorists that the U.S and U.K are fighting. Anyone who believes the Palestinians want peace is either a liar, naive or believes Israel has no right to exsist. The U.N should be investigating Lebanon for harboring a terrorist group)

    The sooner the US breaks off with Israel the better, although the chances of that are exactly zero.

    (The U.S must show more even handness than the Obama has and tell the U.N secretary to retract his words)

  • Comment number 71.

    What do Britain's 'Friends of Israel' think about this atrocity, especially the new Labour M.P for Wavertree, Liverpool, Luciana Berger, who was a director of that organisation?

  • Comment number 72.

    If we had of had any sense we would have gone after Israel instead of Iraq As an Englishman I am disgusted that as a nation we stand by and do nothing as Israel flouts international law Iran is not the danger in the middle east it is Israel

  • Comment number 73.

    Never mind my reaction, which at the end of the day has no effect. What about the reaction of world leaders? Very quiet as usual. If it were arabs doing such a thing, their reaction would have been spontaneous.

  • Comment number 74.

    The aid convoy was in international waters and as such was not doing anything illegal when it was stormed by the Israeli military. If indeed some people on board the ship attempted to defend themselves or to fend off the Israeli attack by firing weapons, in my view they were justified as the Israeli´s had no right to board the ships.

    It´s about time the international community stand up to the cowardly and murderous Israeli regime that seems intent on perpetuating the conflict and spreading hate. Unfortunately, too many politicians around the world live in fear of the pro-Israeli lobbies (or more to the point, they fear losing the cash these lobbyists pay in exchange for being soft on Israel).

    Shame on Israel and shame on the so-called leaders in the United States and the United Nations for letting them get away with murder. How can the Americans continue to say that they have "no greater friend than Israel"?

  • Comment number 75.

    If the people delivering aid to the Gaza strip were honest,open and above board why would they want to incur the wrath of the Israeli soldiers by not handing over whatever supplies they had on board for them to deliver if that is what they wanted to do? It does not make sense to think that Israel,who is fighting a guerilla war would be expected to let every Tom Dick and Harry pass through to the Gaza strip unequivocally.Perhaps they deserved all they got by being very silly. Sorry but they need to plan their aid deliveries a bit more carefully and be less hot-headed.

  • Comment number 76.

    It's high-time international community should now boycott Israel, if only to teach them a lesson. Their actions this weekend are on a par with North Korea. And Israel calls itself a civilised nation?

  • Comment number 77.

    It seems to me that the international community/UN have a lot to answer for in this never ending situation between Israel and the Palestinians.
    Both sides have genuine grievances. The Palestinians are entitled to their own State. Israel is entitled to protect itself.
    The UN general assembly ratified in september 1947 the suggestion to partitian Palestine by creating a Jewish and an Arab state.
    Whether that was right or fair the fact remains the UN has an obligation to uphold its decision.
    The current incident need not have happened if the ship had been sailing under the UN flag. The UN should have been responsible to make sure the 'aid' was genuine with no military component to satisfy Israels concerns - and the UN should have insisted long ago on Statehood for the Palestinians.

  • Comment number 78.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 79.

    Israel lost its legitimacy by attacking a foreign ship in international water. who will ask Israel to justify its actions to the world community?

  • Comment number 80.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 81.

    OK, so the comments so far say it's an act of piracy from one side, an act of deliberate provocation from the other or just two countries fighting for their independant survival. Let's face it - it's all three.

    While the real or artificially twisted facts of both nation's historical background are taught to the young of both sides, and the ruling parties of both are steeped in the dogma of religious and ethnic controversy, there will never be peace between them. While the Israelis are afraid of smuggled arms shipments reaching Gaza and the Palestinians are afraid of yet further land grabs and settlement by the Israelis there can be no peace. While Israel's defence and aggression is supported by the USA and other Western governments and Palestinian guerrilla warfare and rocket attacks are supported by fanatical Muslim tribes, Arab nations, Communist governments and international terrorist organisations there will never be peace.

    With hatred and distrust so prevalent it is pointless trying to apportion blame when both sides are so equally guilty. I can't help thinking that this is one of those (so far untried) times when both territories need to be sealed inside unbreachable walls after removing all but basic weaponry and the inhabitants left to fight it out to the end. The last person standing can keep what's left.

  • Comment number 82.

    For so many years I have had sympathy for Israel. No longer - they are savages and I now regret the support I have felt for them in their fight for a 'homeland'. The UK (and the US) must make a stand against this murderous country.

  • Comment number 83.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 84.

    This country has flouted international law time and again, in the safe knowledge that it can act as it wishes, with impunity, while the world watches helplessly. The US, as Israel's main sponsor, has had for some time held the position of responsibility for this rogue state's actions. Not only because of Israel's brutal, grotesque and unjustifiable actions, but also for what the US itself purports to be: a modern democracy which holds the basic social values of justice for all regardless of race, colour or creed.

    Or so they say. But we haven't seen any meaningful actions to back up this view. Israel invaded Lebanon, targeting civilians with illegal phosphorus bombs, but the US was silent. Then they invaded Gaza and were actively responsible for the genocide of 1300 civilian men women and children. Again, only silence from the US. The Obama administration needs to show that it has the political will and the intestinal fortitude to do what is right and confront this monster before it is too late. Remember, Israel is a nuclear-armed nation that has always been duplicitous and deceptive, even when confronted with proof of its wrongdoings.

    Add to this the increasing fanaticism of Israeli society, the repeated use of unprovoked "pre-emptive" attacks, without care of safety of civilians, and you have a very dangerous, nuclear-armed and violent society who believe any actions they take are justified, regardless of law.

    This country's manipulation of Judaism for its own selfish gain is even more deplorable. As a Jew, I'd like to voice my opposition to this rogue state and its hijacking of my faith and that of Jews all over the world for its own short-term political motives. One can only hope Israel is reigned in before it condemns all Judaism with its thoughtless actions!

  • Comment number 85.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 86.

    If this was the other way round - an Israeli passenger ship being attacked by armed Islamists it would be declared an act of terrorism never mind piracy. But with America on the side of Israel it is a perfectly legitimate act of self defence ... shooting up an aid convoy of all things !

    10 more martyrs to the cause.

  • Comment number 87.

    Whilst I cant condone the actions of Israel's government, why did this convoy not attempt to get aid in throught the recognised channels as the UN etc do? Just tell us how you can achieve peace with an organisation such as Hamas who seek Israel's destruction? Untill rightgwing Muslims accept Israel's right to exist and until Israel allows a viable Palestinain state there wont be peace. Israel is heavy handed but then the threats to her are equally heavy handed.

  • Comment number 88.

    Unless it could be proven irrefutably that the aid flotilla was carrying weapons destined for Gaza, the Israeli boarding of the ships and taking them over is reprehensible. Unfortunately, countries such as the U.S. will simply give Israel another symbolic slap on the wrist, and allow and even encourage Israel to conduct "business as usual," reflecting these countries' hypocritical double standards.

  • Comment number 89.

    From my understanding its not a case of Piracey as Israel is a country rather than private parties. The laws which the ships follow are based on which flag that they bare. So in this case Turkey and the USA.

    Israel is out of control. The Hague should investigate this and if necessary weapon sanctions implimented on Israel.

    The vast majority of Israelies I am sure are decent people. Their government is not, how many more abuses have to happen.

  • Comment number 90.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 91.

    Israel, shame on shame on you. Shame on anyone blindly supporting Israel in this inhuman act of state sponsored terrorism.

  • Comment number 92.

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  • Comment number 93.

    Shame on you Israel,
    deep shame on you for essentially hi-jacking a humanitarian aid convoy that was in international waters and completely outwith your control. If you let the people have the aid they needed this would never have happened. I know who the terrorists are now, and your endemic form of state controlled terrorism is the worst kind, insipid and barbaric. I really don't know how other countries can look the other way while innocent civilians are needlessly dying at the hands of such a deceitful, despotic tin-pot outfit like Israel. Shame on you all.

  • Comment number 94.

    Are nations allowed to defend themselves?
    Selected ones like Iran and North Korea defend themselves rigourously and capture our naval personel on legitmate business on the high seas.

    Do they get castigated? Are they threatened with sanctions if they don't conform? They are, after all, several times the size of 60mile X 9mile Israel - so, shouldn't they be the focus of our wrath? Imagine smuggling arms and ammunition into their country, then rocketing their civilians.

    Israel has a right to monitor goods going to her enemies - enriched uranium, for example, which could have a devastating effect on the world in the hands of suicide bombers.

    Even pirates off Somalia seem to have more rights to board ships and hold them hostage than Israel does to ensure its security.

    The world is biased against this little Mediteranean state because it is Jewish and not Arabic. It is on the border between two worlds.

    Yes,Israel has the right to board ships known to wish her destruction.

  • Comment number 95.

    Another cynical ploy by the supporters of Hamas, a terrorist organisation that is holding the people of Gaza hostage. Maybe if there were free and fair elections held in Gaza I'd have a bit more sympathy with them as it is I support Israel's actions in this case even if they did bungle the landing on the ship and allowed themselves to be attacked by knife and club wielding peace activists, as shown on tv. Odd how it all was planned to happen on a day when a lot of folk are on holiday and a day before the Israeli prime minster was due to meet with the American president. Let's just remind ourselves who the real supporters of terrorism around the world are before we condemn another democratic country.

  • Comment number 96.

    The Israeli government try to protect its citizens by any means. Political correctness is not even thought about. The Palistinians do not help the situation, so why play the innocent victims? Truth is Isreal is required by the west and know it. Palistinians are only cannon fodder in the big game. Was Israel right to board these ships? Yes. Was Hammas right to send them. Yes. Do we care? NO.

  • Comment number 97.

    Anyone who believes that this convoy was carrying only humaritanian supplies needs a reality check. Hamas has a history of attempting to smuggle arms into Gaza. The people who were running these ships were warned that they would not be allowed to sail directly into a Gaza port, but that the aid could be delivered through Israel, yet they cry 'foul' when the Israeli armed forces stop them.
    The fact that it was in international waters was immaterial. This was a provacation aimed at Israel, knowing full well what their reaction would be. If you want to get at Israel, folks, you will have to smarten up a bit. They have a long history of doing exactly what they say they will.

  • Comment number 98.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 99.

    This comment was removed because the moderators found it broke the house rules. Explain.

  • Comment number 100.

    Last night, Israeli government thugs committed murder and piracy on the high seas when they boarded an international humanitarian aid convoy heading for Gaza, killing at least ten innocent civilians and what will be done about it by western governments? - nothing, because Israeli influence throughout the world either directly or through their surrogate America will make excuses for it.

    No doubt today we will see all of the various 'friends of Israel', who have got themselves into positions of power in our own political parties, paraded by the BBC and others in an attempt to justify Israel's outrageous actions as they did when Israel slaughtered 1400 Palestinians last year.

    Israel is a rogue state defying international law and carrying out ethnic cleansing in Palestine. It has locked 1.5million Palestinians into the Gaza strip, a virtual prison, controlling their borders by land sea and air, denying them the basics of human life, and the world looks on in shame.

    The appalling behaviour of Israel is the greatest threat to world peace and is at the heart of much of the world's terrorism, they have no regard for the safety of the rest of the world as long as they are allowed to pursue their own political and ideological aims i.e. to occupy the whole of Palestine.


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