An IDF boat patrolling the northern Gaza Strip on Thursday morning was shot at by local Arabs. No one was hurt. The incident began when Arab fishing boats had strayed outside the permitted fishing zone. The Israeli Navy boat called on the suspects to get back and followed the suspect apprehension protocol. During the operation one of the suspects was shot and lightly injured and taken for medical treatment in Ashdod. The other suspects drove their fishing boat back to the permitted zone.
The head of the local Fishermen Union, Nizar Ayyash, told Ma’an that the Israeli Navy detained Abed al-Aziz Saadallah off the coast of Beit Lahiya after opening “heavy fire” at fishing boats.
The IDF Spokesperson’s Office responded that the fisherman was detained after deviating from the “designated fishing zone,” and was also reportedly wounded by Israeli fire. According to the IDF, the Naval force told the fishermen to stop, and shot warning shots into the air. When the boats failed to stop, the Naval force shot towards the vessels, wounding one Arab. The IDF Spokesperson added that shots were fired from the northern shore of the Gaza Strip at the Israeli naval force.
The first of three or four boats trying to break Israel’s anti-terror maritime embargo on Gaza left the Greek island of Crete Friday morning and is scheduled to dock in Gaza on Sunday or morning.
Israel has said that the boats will not reach Gaza under any circumstances.
The Israeli Navy will stop the flotilla, as it has done in the past, but activists say that since the Marianne of Gothenburg boat flies the Swedish flag, Israel could be accused of a war crime
“War crime” is the buzz words these days, usually referring to any action by Israel that does not further the aims of the Palestinian Authority, which yesterday said it is bringing to the International Criminal Court (ICC) charges that building homes for Jews and a highway in Jerusalem are war crimes.
Pro-Hamas activists have learned their lessons from previous publicity stunts and are keeping mum on the boats’ location, a rather childish act since the IDF has enough surveillance equipment to know exactly where they are without any help from the flotilla’s public relations staff.
The departure date of the flotilla had been delayed. Activists claim that Israeli agents sabotaged at least one of the boats, but others say that inclement weather forced the activists to postpone their trip.
As usual, the activists are trying to attract as much attentions as possible and have brought an Israeli Arab Knesset Member with them. MK Basel Ghattas and a former Tunisian president are among the 70 people on board the lead ship.
Organizers of the flotillas have assured Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu that they are not bringing any weapons with them. In 2010, Turkish-based terrorists used iron bars and two pistols to challenge Israeli Navy officers who boarded the Mavi Mamara ship. Ten of the terrorists were killed in the clash.
“If there is some kind of violent confrontation, it won’t come from our side,” a left-wing Israeli activist said.
The Marianne is carrying one solar panel and medical supplies, all of which can easily reach Gaza by land from Israel. A single solar panel is absolutely useless, except as propaganda to “con the world,” as seen in the video below.
Lost in the hype and reports by establishment media that are hungry for anti-Israel news is the fact the solar panels and medical supplies cannot enter Gaza so freely from Egypt, which has blocked passage several times, including this past month.
The last word in the new flotilla stunt already has been written: The IDF will stop the boats before they can get too close to Gaza, the Foreign Ministry told The JewishPress.com.
If the passengers indeed are unarmed, the whole scene will be a circus for the media.
The IDF will warn the captain of the boats not to proceed. He will refuse, forcing the Navy to surround the ships.
The Navy officers will try to find a way to take over the wheel if the captain does not cooperate.
Everyone will arrive in the port of Ashdod, and the passengers will call the soldiers “war criminals” and perhaps will sit down in a circle and clasp hands, singing “We shall overcome” as four soldiers haul each passenger off the boat.
The news photographers will love it, and perhaps Gaza terrorists will celebrate by launching a rocket or two at Israel.
If they are lucky, the missiles won’t fall short and explode on a house in Gaza, in which case Israel would be accused of committing a war crime because the “occupation made them do it.”
Below is the video “We Con the World,” produce by the Latma satirical group after the Mavi Mamaras clash five years ago.
Israel and Germany have signed a 430-million Euro contract to provide the Jewish State with four ships to protect natural gas and oil rigs in the Mediterranean.
The Defense Ministry announced the deal on Monday with the arrival in Tel Aviv of German Defense Minister Ursula von der Leyen for an official state visit.
Included in the agreement was a special grant of 115 million Euros provided to Israel by the German government.
The project is being funded via the Exclusive Economic Zone through a budget separate from that used for defense.
Maj.-Gen. (res.) Dan Harel, managing director of the Defense Ministry, said the acquisition represented “a dramatic improvement in the navy’s ability to protect strategic sites for the State of Israel.”
The four patrol corvette-type vessels are to be built by the TKMS German shipyard in the city of Kiel near Hamburg. All will be equipped with Israeli combat systems.
The shipyard is owned and operated by the TK Consortium, which has committed to a reciprocal purchase from Israel. TK Consortium has agreed to buy at least NIS 700 million in Israeli defense product under the terms of the contract.
Given the equipment with which the vessels are to be loaded, Israel’s defense industry will be busy for the next five years, when the vessels are to arrive.
Dolphin submarines currently in use by the Israel Navy were produced in the same shipyard.
The International Criminal Court at The Hague has decided not to investigate the 2010 incident involving clashes between Israeli commandos and IHH terror activists aboard a “humanitarian” flotilla headed for Gaza.
The clashes took place aboard one of six vessels in the flotilla, the Turkish-owned Mavi Marmara ship, which was found when searched to be carrying no aid supplies whatsoever.
It did, however, carry armed activists who were itching for a fight and more than prepared to start one. As soon as the Israeli soldiers began to board their vessel to take control and bring the ship to Ashdod port – since the flotilla had ignored Israeli orders to change course and avoid Gaza on its own – the activists attacked the commandos with crowbars, knives, chains and other weapons. Some soldiers were hurled overboard into the sea. Several were tied up.
But the soldiers who were behind and following saw the attack and realized what was happening, and they launched a counter attack. Ultimately, nine of the terror activists died in the clashes, including eight Turkish nationals and one American.
Prosecutors at the ICC found that although there was a “reasonable basis” to believe the Israeli commandos may have committed war crimes during the incident, they did not fall under the jurisdiction of the court.
Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, who at the time was the country’s prime minister, has milked the incident to distance his government — and his country — from its regional ally, Israel.
Until the 2006 Second Lebanon War, the two nations were close allies, but Erdogan flew into a rage when Israel launched a counter terror operation in summer 2006 against the Hamas terrorist organization, created by the radical Islamist Muslim Brotherhood group which Erdogan strongly favors.
Since that time, Erdogan has constantly sought excuses to slap at Israel and to dissolve the close economic, military and strategic relations that have been developed between the two countries over the years.
The Israeli Navy has toughened up on Gaza fishermen who continue to sail past the limits that Israel r ally expanded as part of the last cease-fire agreement, and maritime soldiers arrested seven fishermen, according to the federation of Gaza fishermen.
IDF spokesmen confirmed that “two vessels sailed beyond the permitted fishing zone” even though the Navy fired warning shots for them to turn around when the boats traveled 1.8 nautical miles past the limit.
Soldiers fired rubber bullets, injuring one Gaza man lightly.
The problem is not with fisherman, most of whom are not involved in terrorism. The problem is that if they can freely sail past the limits, terrorists used the fishing boats as cover.
The recent escalation in the need for the Israel Navy to fire warning shots to heed off Gaza vessels comes on weeks after Israel agreed to double to six nautical miles the waters where Gaza fishermen are allowed to operate.