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Israel - Netanyahu: World Criticism Won't Stop Israel's Blockade of Gaza

Published on: June 1, 2010 05:06 PM
By:  Haaretz
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Israel - Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told his political-security cabinet on Tuesday that international condemnation would not stop Israel’s naval blockade of the Gaza Strip.

The Israel Navy’s deadly raid of a Gaza-bound flotilla carrying humanitarian aid awakened a storm of criticism among Israel’s friends and foes alike, leading many members of the United Nations Security Council to call on Israel to lift its years-long siege of the Hamas-ruled coastal territory.

But Netanyahu told ministers at a special meeting convened in the wake of the raid that the blockade was still necessary to prevent weapons from being smuggled into the Gaza Strip.

“We know from the experience of Operation Cast Lead that the weapons entering Gaza are being turned against our civilians,” Netanyahu said, referring to Israel’s three-week offensive on the Gaza Strip that ended in January 2009.

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“Gaza is a terror state funded by the Iranians, and therefore we must try to prevent any weapons from being brought into Gaza by air, sea and land,” he said.

Netanyahu acknowledged that militants were still capable of smuggling weapons in via tunnels from Egypt, but emphasized that the large amounts of weapons that could be brought by sea made the threat a completely different affair.

“On the Francop ship alone we confiscated some 200 tons of weapons being smuggled to Hezbollah,” the prime minister said, in reference to the Antiguan-flagged ship Israel intercepted off the coast of Cyprus in November 2009.

“Opening a naval route to Gaza will present an enormous dangerous to the security of our citizens,” said Netanyahu. “Therefore, we will stand firm on our policy of a naval blockade and of inspecting incoming ships.”

“It’s true that there is international pressure and criticism of this policy, but [the world] must understand that it is crucial to preserving Israel’s security and the right of the State of Israel’s to defend itself.”

Netanyahu added that Israel regretted that nine lives were lost in the operation on Monday, but defended the Israel Defense Forces soldiers as having been justified in the actions of their mission.

“This was not a peace flotilla, but a violent force,” he said.

The special cabinet meeting on Tuesday was expected to result in a demand to establish a panel of inquiry to investigate how and why the decision was made to carry out the commando raid on the flotilla.

Senior ministers have been sharply critical of the fact that the decision to seize control of the flotilla to Gaza was made after two meetings of the forum of seven senior ministers but without official deliberation by the inner cabinet, the body that has the authority to approve military actions of this scale.

Netanyahu returned to Israel on Tuesday morning from the United States, after canceling his scheduled meeting with President Barack Obama in Washington. He convened the inner cabinet for 4 P.M. to discuss the implications of Monday’s military operation.

Senior ministers have noted that, in contrast to the handling of similar incidents in the past, the inner cabinet did not discuss issues related to the flotilla, receive operational briefings or approve the operation. The forum of seven, which did consider and approve the plan, is a consultative body only and does not have the legal authority to pass resolutions.

The forum - Netanyahu, Defense Minister Ehud Barak, Foreign Minister Avigdor Lieberman, Intelligence and Atomic Affairs Minister Dan Meridor, Strategic Affairs Minister Moshe Ya’alon, Interior Minister Eli Yishai and Minster without Portfolio Benny Begin - held just two meetings on the flotilla, the latest on Wednesday. They approved the operation and the continuation of the Israeli policy of barring ships from docking in Gaza.

Much of the session was devoted not to the military operation but rather to media and public relations issues surrounding the issue. “The ministers who attended the meeting didn’t get the impression from the defense establishment that a violent confrontation of this scope was likely,” one senior Jerusalem official said. “The sense during the discussion was that the navy would come and the organizers would take fright, do an about-face and flee,” he said.

According to senior officials who attended the session, a few ministers expressed differing views but in the end a consensus was reached and there was not even a vote. One of the most vocal participants in Wednesday’s session was Cabinet Secretary Zvi Hauser.

He was against the raid and said the ships should be allowed to dock in Gaza in order to avoid a diplomatic and public relations crisis as well as the embarrassment to Israel that a violent confrontation with demonstrators on the ships could cause. After senior defense officials expressed their opposition to Hauser’s views, his position was rejected.


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Jerusalem - An American woman has lost her eye during a demonstration in Jerusalem against Israel's naval raid on a Gaza aid flotilla, a hospital official said... Washington - Attorney General Eric Holder says federal authorities have opened criminal and civil investigations into the Deepwater Horizon explosion and oil...

 

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1

 Jun 01, 2010 at 05:15 PM Come on Says:

Hear hear, Bibi

Someone get this Hauser out of the Cabinet!

2

 Jun 01, 2010 at 05:22 PM Anonymous Says:

Finally some guts!! But honestly Bibi, you're still influenced and controlled way too much by the left wing self hating suicidal maniacs in you're country and by world opinion inn general.

You will only be taken serious and gain respect when you show MORE GUTS and serious willingness to protect your people!! To hell with world opinion already!!

I know it's much easier said than done, but these facts are true.

3

 Jun 01, 2010 at 05:34 PM robert Says:

Mr Netanyahu: With all the respect to you, By saying "World Criticism Won't Stop Israel's Blockade of Gaza" You are adding fuel to the fire and having a greater chance of becoming more isolated in world opinion, rather hire a PR firm to make statements in your name,

4

 Jun 01, 2010 at 05:37 PM HaNavon Says:

If there ever was a time when all Jews the wide world over need to stick together it is now.
What we have here is nothing less than a terrorist regime who has made known their will to kill every Jew in Israel, and Israel has the right and the obligation to ensure the safety of its citizens.
The entire world is uniting against us, and we will win in the end if we stand strong. If we do not, if any of us join protests against this raid, then we weaken the name of the Jewish people and of Hashem.
If you want to be a Satmarer, gezunt dir heit, but that's an internal struggle that we don't present to the rest of the world!
When family members fight, they argue inside, not outside!
This really is the beginning of Gog u'Magog, the nations of the world uniting against the Jews while we live in the land of Israel.

5

 Jun 01, 2010 at 05:45 PM mike Says:

go Benjamin Netanyahu. We love you here

6

 Jun 01, 2010 at 05:47 PM Pupik Says:

good for Netanyahu... Chazak Chazak don't give in to the haters and terrorists of the world and finally we'll get some respect.

7

 Jun 01, 2010 at 05:48 PM shaya Says:

I cant understand how Israel did air force military exercise with turkey,

8

 Jun 01, 2010 at 06:01 PM Askupeh Says:

Finally Natanyahu is talking sense although quite belatedly. Israel should go on the offensive and say that they are a sovereign country who has a right to protect itself. No country in the world would do any different and Israel shouldn't be expected to either. If Israel has no right to blockade terrorist Gaza, then Turkey surely has no right to blockade Cyprus.

Israel should not do an investigation, because there is nothing to investigate. If anything Israel should make an investigation and publish the hypocritical response of the so called free world, a world unashamed to blame the Jew for everything and anything, a world which will always call Israel's defending itself as excessive and disproportionate. Israel naively approached this with silk gloves and that's why their soldiers got hurt, they were told that they will meet 80 year old ladies who are holocaust survivors who only want peace. Israel has no right to put its soldiers in needless danger, instead they should declare that they will sink every ship trying to break the blockade and treat it as an act of war. That's what Russia would do, that's what Turkey would do, and that's what every country in the world would do.

9

 Jun 01, 2010 at 06:22 PM yoelyg Says:

Why is he putting oil to the fire? Hope America will stop giving them money, they not listing to the world

10

 Jun 01, 2010 at 06:43 PM It's Halacha Says:

Rambam, Hilchos Shabbos, Perek 2, Halacha 23 (you can find the same halacha in Shulchan Aroch 329)

[The following rules apply] when gentiles lay siege to Jewish cities: If their intent was financial gain, the Sabbath laws should not be violated because of them, nor are we allowed to wage war against them. If a city is located near the border, however, we should march against them with weapons and wage war against them even when they are demanding hay or straw.

In any location, if the gentiles' intent was Jewish lives, or if they engaged in battle with a city or laid siege to it without stating a specific intention, we must wage war against them, and the Sabbath laws should be violated because of them. It is a mitzvah for every member of the Jewish people who can come [to their assistance] to go out and aid their brethren who are under siege and save them from the gentiles [although it is the] Sabbath. It is forbidden to wait until Saturday night.

After they have saved their brethren, they may return home with their weapons on the Sabbath, so that a dangerous situation will not be created in the future.

11

 Jun 01, 2010 at 06:49 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #3  
robert Says:

Mr Netanyahu: With all the respect to you, By saying "World Criticism Won't Stop Israel's Blockade of Gaza" You are adding fuel to the fire and having a greater chance of becoming more isolated in world opinion, rather hire a PR firm to make statements in your name,

Robert ... World opinion is meaningless. World opinion wants Israel destroyed and world opinion hates Jews no matter what the Israelis will do.
And from what I've heard today , the Israeli response would have been much stronger , as it should have been , but the appeasenick Ehud Barack , who wanted to return 99% of Israel's liberated territories , this Barack orchestrated the Flotilla fiasco. A weak orchestration indeed.

12

 Jun 01, 2010 at 06:53 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #9  
yoelyg Says:

Why is he putting oil to the fire? Hope America will stop giving them money, they not listing to the world

What exactly do you want them to listen? Do you want that they should lift the blockade and alow Iran to send in missiles to shoot at Yiddisha kinder in Eretz Yisroel? Please explain what exactly you want them to do.

13

 Jun 01, 2010 at 07:18 PM Anonymous Says:

Way to go Bibi. G-d is on our side.

14

 Jun 01, 2010 at 08:41 PM Lawyer Says:

Reply to #7  
shaya Says:

I cant understand how Israel did air force military exercise with turkey,

Turkey used to have a secular government. The country even joined NATO and was considered part of the Western alliance. It had close ties to Israel for various reasons, including mistrust of the Arabs and Iran, a desire to be close to the West, and a long history of tolerance towards Jews. (Many Jews who fled Spain in 1492 settled in what was then the Ottoman Empire, which was ruled by the Turkish Sultan. Today those areas include Turkey, Bulgaria, Greece, parts of the former Yugoslavia and Syria. That's why so many of those Jews speak Ladino.)

A few years ago, the Islamic parties took over Turkey, and have steadily been leading the country towards Islamic fundamentalism. It has become hostile towards Israel and is almost an enemy at this point.

15

 Jun 01, 2010 at 09:16 PM Anonymous Says:

Reply to #10  
It's Halacha Says:

Rambam, Hilchos Shabbos, Perek 2, Halacha 23 (you can find the same halacha in Shulchan Aroch 329)

[The following rules apply] when gentiles lay siege to Jewish cities: If their intent was financial gain, the Sabbath laws should not be violated because of them, nor are we allowed to wage war against them. If a city is located near the border, however, we should march against them with weapons and wage war against them even when they are demanding hay or straw.

In any location, if the gentiles' intent was Jewish lives, or if they engaged in battle with a city or laid siege to it without stating a specific intention, we must wage war against them, and the Sabbath laws should be violated because of them. It is a mitzvah for every member of the Jewish people who can come [to their assistance] to go out and aid their brethren who are under siege and save them from the gentiles [although it is the] Sabbath. It is forbidden to wait until Saturday night.

After they have saved their brethren, they may return home with their weapons on the Sabbath, so that a dangerous situation will not be created in the future.

Just adding what I heard from a gadol. This halachah in shulchan urech was written for when? When moshiach will be here? NO. Then we won't need this halachah.
Just when the Shilchon Urech wrote this halachah they saw with ruach hakodesh that we will be in a situation we are in now and that's why they wrote this halachah.

16

 Jun 01, 2010 at 10:28 PM Anonymous Says:

It's about time Israel stopped caring about what the rest of the world proposes and started defending herself.

17

 Jun 01, 2010 at 11:11 PM Barzilai Says:

I wish Netanyahu would say what we're all thinking: that if this is how the world reacts to our effort to protect ourselves, if the world declares us to be "criminal" for interdicting the importation of weapons by a terrorist regime, then next time we should take North Korea for an example and torpedo the boats and let everyone aboard drown. Nobody is doing anything about that, are they? Just harrumphs and delusional speeches about "consequences." Ha.

18

 Jun 01, 2010 at 10:33 PM A Poshiter Yid Says:

Oh yes Bibi, You are doing a great job.

19

 Jun 01, 2010 at 11:23 PM Rambam Says:

That's actualy yesterday's Shiur in Rambam :) (a Takana from the Rebbe to learn three Prakim a day)

20

 Jun 02, 2010 at 01:26 AM Ich shaym zich oych nisht Says:

The article states "they didn't expect this because they would be put in fright and would turn back.".
What a bunch of dodo birds/ Obama is smart and knows Netanyahu has no spine! Are you kidding me?
"they would be in fright? Is everyone stupid ? The IDF ? Ambassador Bolton has stated "these people are different-They live to die". Netanyahu never learned chumash (although his son won prizes in Tanach1) Halacha beyadooa she 'eisav soneh ess Yaakov. "they did't expect that these goyim
and ARabs (no intelligence of 700 paasengers from Mossad -(another intelligence failure) were a bunch of ahteful spitefil soynim,. Every Orthodox Jew knew this but like Obama and the stupid
Clinton think "we can negotiate with them". They are smoking grass! Netanyahu, and the IDF should see the fervor against Jews and Zionism now intertwined in the Nordic countries and colleges all over the world. Israel wake up there is no civility from these people toward Jews . Bring down
a few large boomers (noise the FBI uses) disble the boats and drop 50 men at once with orders to
shoot to kill- Dropping leaflets that if soldiers are met with any threat -the activists will be shot and let th

21

 Jun 02, 2010 at 07:48 AM Moving to the left Says:

#13- The Muslims and the Christians say the same thing. Believing in G-d is one thing, using His name to "prove" that we are "right" puts us on equal moral ground as our enemies.

22

 Jun 02, 2010 at 08:28 AM anonymous Says:

Recently the German der Spiegel had on its title page Hitler's European helpers. Yes between 1939 and 1941 non-German flocked to the SS not so much for the love of Hitler but the chance of killing sheer antisemtism. The Lithuanina SS , Latvian SS and of course Ukrainian SS but then there were the Ustashi, Croatian SS, Bosnian Musslim and Slovak SS and finally the Hungarian SS. The all pounced on the opportunity of Killing Jews and now you have a replay in the motley crew on board of these , Algerians, Germans of course and other antisemites. History is a marry go roundf except the protagonists change.

23

 Jun 02, 2010 at 10:11 AM Anonymous Says:

Netanyanu is correct. We have been the scapegoats for the world from the beginning of time and it will not change.. I remember my late father Z'tl, telling me, here are the papers from the Mikva for your mother Z'tl. Keep them safe, for if you ever need them to escape to Is., you will need them. Remember the name on the papers, because it will come down to the attesting Rabbi, and his reputation as an Orthodox Rav.
Growong up in a small community, I grew up with the snide dsremarks, etc., that came from all walks of life.
I can tell a lot of stories, but just remember, without Is., we as Jews have NOTHING.

24

 Jun 02, 2010 at 11:58 AM simcha Says:

i pray that his resolve remains firm

25

 Jun 02, 2010 at 12:28 PM Askupeh Says:

Reply to #17  
Barzilai Says:

I wish Netanyahu would say what we're all thinking: that if this is how the world reacts to our effort to protect ourselves, if the world declares us to be "criminal" for interdicting the importation of weapons by a terrorist regime, then next time we should take North Korea for an example and torpedo the boats and let everyone aboard drown. Nobody is doing anything about that, are they? Just harrumphs and delusional speeches about "consequences." Ha.

Look at the hypocrisy, China who condemned Israel, couldn’t find any words of condemnation towards North Korea for killing 46 South Korean servicemen. The world's hypocrisy stinks all the way from New York to Bangkok.

26

 Jun 02, 2010 at 01:42 PM CHAIM Says:

Get #1 out of hear. Great Bibi "dos iz a mentch nisht kain schnuk"

27

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