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Sobering Lessons From the Flotilla

Surprise: Flotilla raid was bungled behind the scenes.

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Tel Aviv(JACK GUEZ/AFP/GettyImages))

The good news is that Israel still has strong internal oversight. The bad, if unsurprising, news is that the resulting report on the handling of the Gaza flotilla has little good to say on the topic. State Comptroller Micha Lindenstrauss’ report paints a picture of a cloistered, unprepared administration that acted in a haphazard fashion and had “substantive and significant shortcomings.” Nine Turkish and Turkish American activists died in the commando raid.

The prime minister office statement was unblinking: “Israel’s democratic process includes institutional mechanisms for independent oversight, and we thank the state comptroller for his work.” Meanwhile, Knesset member Hanin Zoabi, who was on the Mavi Marmarma, said the Lindenstrauss report failed by focusing on operational rather than moral failure. And an unnamed Turkish diplomatic official remains unimpressed.

If you’re not depressed enough this morning over incompetences of the past, get ready to worry about the ones of the future. Over at Haaretz, Amir Oren points out that the phenomenology of failure probably portends what is to come on Iran. Turkey, he writes, “is only a foretaste of the main course, the coming attraction for the Persian movie. The superficiality, complacence and carelessness that were the hallmarks of Netanyahu’s approach to the flotilla are enough to make one sick. There is no reason to think … [there will be a] better outcome for the Iranian affair.”

Dangers Of Israel’s War With Iran Are Written On The Walls of the Gaza Flotilla [Haaretz]
Israeli Watchdog Criticizes Government Over Gaza Flotilla Raid [NYT]


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Jacob Arnon says:

I am unimpressed with Haaretz article.  They always criticize Israel and predict catastrophe. It’s in their DNA.

SteveSiporin says:

I don’t get it and just have never gotten it. There seems to be an almost universal assumption that Israel at worst was wrong in even trying to stop the flotilla and at best “bungled” the operation.  The unprecedented event of a “peace flotilla” with weapons and the intention to commit violence should be the outstanding fact and focus of our attention; but instead, Shayetet’s inability to prevent casualties (among those who wanted to be martyred and were not acting like peace activists at all but in fact were trying to kill Shayetet commandos) has been made into the issue—the press almost universally assisting Erdogan and all haters of Israel in doing so.
Thank G-d no Shayetet members were killed; their training and skill deserves praise.  Let’s not undermine them.  Preparing for such an operation, with unforeseeable and unpredictable elements, isn’t the same as going to an office to work, and the outcome can’t be as certain.   Instead, the press decided it was “bungled”—so it became “bungled.”  The flotilla wanted martyrs and Erdogan was in the middle of dumping Israel already.  What happened with the flotilla made no difference on those scores, but if it had been allowed to pass, where would we be now?  Given the difficulties, which were successfully overcome, Israel should have celebrated a vicotry. 

We should stop maximizing Israel’s small miscalculations and stop minimizing the guilt and evil of people like Erdogan.  And we should celebrate our victories, if we can only recognize them.

Steve Siporin

JohnWV says:

Mavi Marmara? Just routine Israeli supremacist behavior. Palestine is occupied by the Jewish state. Weimar Germany was occupied economically and politically by excesses of its monied Jewish minority. America is similarly occupied right now. Our entire electoral system has been corrupted by Netanyahu’s Israel, AIPAC, Israel Firsters and ingenious distribution of enormous amounts of Jewish money. Our representative democracy is nearly defeated and the destruction of America as we know it well underway. Termination of the criminal treachery and treason demands immediate priority. The Government of the United States must again serve American interests, not the Jewish state’s relentless pursuit of invulnerability, territorial conquest and apartheid empire in, and beyond, the Mideast.


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Sobering Lessons From the Flotilla

Surprise: Flotilla raid was bungled behind the scenes.

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