Gaza Freedom Flotilla building steam

The Free Gaza Movement’s FREEDOM FLOTILLA III is assembling itself ship by ship at European ports. Departure is set for later this month. You can already track the passenger ship MS Mavi Marmara and cargo ships Gazze, Sofia and MV Rachel Corrie on Google Earth. Will the humanitarian relief convoy succumb to Israel’s blockade?
UPDATED: photo-profiles of the IN v. FGM maritime contenders:

The blockade runners:

M/S Mavi Marmara, Turkey, IMO: 7083956, MMSI: 271002151
Currently in Sarayburnu, Istanbul, heading to Tuzla shipyard.

Gazze, Turkey, IMO: 7806192, MMSI: 271002042
Currently in Haydarpasa, Istanbul.

VM Rachel Corrie, Ireland, IMO: 6715281, MMSI: 515886000
(Formally: Linda) Currently at Brown’s Quay, Dundalk, Ireland.

Ship to Gaza sponsored by Sweden
Sofia, Sweden / Greece, IMO: 6713752, MMSI: 239219000
Currently docked in Piraeus Roads, Athens.
Itinerary: Tromsö – Göthenburg – Great Yarmouth – Bilbao – Lisbon – Barcelona – Marseilles – Genoa – Athens – Istanbul – Gaza City.


Defne Y, Kiribata, IMO: 7725518, MMSI: 529239000.
Currently loading in Istanbul.


The Israeli blockade

Free Gaza has launched eight relief flotillas to Gaza since 2006, but according to Intifata Palestine:

The last three voyages were illegally stopped by the Israeli navy when, in December, 2008, they rammed the DIGNITY in international water, turned back the SPIRIT OF HUMANITY by threatening to shoot all on board, then hijacking the SPIRT on July 1, 2009, kidnapping the passengers and throwing them into prison for a week.

Israeli Super Dvora Mk III gunship intercepts Freedom Flotilla cargo ship The Brotherhood Ship in 2009, forcing it to return to Lebanon.

Israeli coastal patrol accosts Palestinian fishing vessels which stray beyond an Israel-imposed six mile fishing limit.

Israeli Dabur class Coastal Patrol Craft sets water hose on Palestinian fishing vessel before making arrests.

It was a Dabur in 2008 which rammed the Free Gaza relief ship Dignity.

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Eric Verlo

About Eric Verlo

On sabbatical
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10 Responses to Gaza Freedom Flotilla building steam

  1. Avatar Nonie Darwish says:

    Problem is the absence of freedom in Gaza is due to Hamas, not Israel. Imposition of sharia law in Gaza prohibits women from even laughing in public, there is no due process, supporters of opposing political parties are arrested, beaten, tortured and murdered and other basic freedoms, human rights and civil liberties simply do not exist.

  2. Avatar Shlomo Shunn says:

    Actually, the “problem” is Ashkenazis acting like Nazis.

    Israel is a socialist, militaristic, racist theocracy that sponges off America while oppressing Arabs. Its leaders are endlessly tried for corruption. The Jewish State also supports a flourishing forced-sex trade.

    There is no abuse or hypocrisy that isn’t celebrated in the Levant.

    Founded by terrorist militias, Israel continues to terrorize Palestinians, the former Haganah, Irgun, and other groups morphing into the IDF.

    Israel is also led by cowards. “Brave” warriors use hi-tech missiles, tanks, drones, jets, phosphorus bombs, attack helicopters, and artillery against civilians with no such weapons.

    Israel has become Goliath, due for a come-uppance.

    It is now a blight unto the nations…doing to Gazans what the Wehrmacht did to Jews in Warsaw.

    So the next time you feel bad for Jews being humiliated, abused, and killed in Holocaust films, remember: The IDF and Knesset think it’s kosher to do the same now to Arabs.

    Tactics used against Jews in the 1930s-40s were also, according to Israel, necessary to deal with “terrorist” and “demographic” threats.

    Maybe Israel should go the way of the USSR…and dodo birds.

  3. Avatar Nonie Darwish says:

    “Israel is a socialist, militaristic, racist theocracy”

    No, Israel is a parliamentary democracy, whose Knesset is comprised of a wide array of ethnic and religious backrounds. 20 percent of Israel’s Labour Party, for example, is Arab. The Knesset even includes members who support terrorist groups, such as Hamas.

    One cannot fathom the US Congress having members who support al Qaeda.

    So, Israel’s parliament is even more diverse than the US Congress.

    I’m afraid you do not know what a theocracy actually is. A theocracy is ruled by a deity and governed by religious figures, such as Iran, which is ruled by Allah and governed by ayatollahs and other religious clerics.

    Israel is a secular country.

    So, you really do not know what you’re even talking about.

    “that sponges off America…”

    Wrong, again. Seems to be a pattern with you.
    Israel has developed into one of the most advanced, successful and prosperous countries in the world.

    Israel is one of the wealthiest countries, with a per capita income of $35,000.

    Israel is one of the fastest growing economies, with a GDP of $200 bilion.

    Israel has become a world leader in information technology, with more IT companies listed on NASDAQ than any other country, except the US.

    Israel is a leader in solar technology, electric transportation technology, water purification technology, medical devices, pharmaceuticals (Teva, with a capitalization of $50 billion, is the world’s largest generic pharma company), chemicals, agriculture and military technology. Israel is the 4th largest military contractor in the world, after the US, the UK and Russia. India recently signed a multi-billion dollar arms contract with Israeli contractors.

    Israel is also one of only 8 countries in the world with an aerospace program and with satellites in orbit.

    So, again, you really do not know what you’re talking about.

    “while oppressing Arabs.”

    Wrong. Israel is the only democratic country in the fascist, tyrannical Arab Middle East where Arabs are constitutionally guaranteed full freedom, human rights and civil liberties.

    Israeli Arabs are scorned by Arabs in Arab countries for their free lives.

    In Gaza, Palestinians live in fear of their lives and are denied basic human rights.

    In Saudi Arabia, women are oppressed and are not even allowed to drive cars.

    Gays are persecuted in Arab countries.

    Christians are persecuted in Arab countries.

    “Its leaders are endlessly tried for corruption.”

    I only can think of a couple. Far more leaders in the US and the Arab countries are guilty of corruption. Arafat stole billions of dollars in foreign aid. His wife lives in luxury in Paris while Palestinians live in squalor.

    “Founded by terrorist militias”

    Israel was founded by pacifist Zionists who arrived unarmed and without a military.

    “Israel continues to terrorize Palestinians”

    Israel continues to be persecuted by Palestinian terrorists, such as Hamas, a US State Department-designated terrorist group, Islamic Jihad, Tanzim, al Aqsa Martyrs Brigades and dozens of other Palestinian terrorist factions dedicated to Israel’s destruction.

    Hamas’s charter, its leaders and clerics explicitly call for genocide of Jews.

    During the 4 year al Aqsa intifada terrorist suicide bombings, 1,000 Israelis were killed, including Arabs, Muslims and Christians, and 6,000 more were wounded.

    “the former Haganah, Irgun, and other groups morphing into the IDF.”

    Irgun consisted of just a couple hundred members and was established to combat Arab violence perpetrated against Jews, beginning with the massacres of Jews in the 1920s and the Hebron Massacre of 1939 through the Arab guerilla war leading to the Arab-initiated 1948 War intended to exterminate the Jewish community.

    The Arab Grand Mufti was a Nazi collaborator who recruited Muslims into the SS.

    Arabs and Muslims, in general, sided with the Nazis, while Jews fought on the side of the Allies in World War I and WW II.

    The IDF is the Israeli military, which every sovereign state is entitled to have. The IDF has a close relationship with the US military and has assisted the US military for decades in helping to maximize US national security.

    “Israel is also led by cowards. “Brave” warriors use hi-tech missiles, tanks, drones, jets, phosphorus bombs, attack helicopters, and artillery against civilians with no such weapons. “

    Every sovereign state strives to achieve military superiority in order to maintain its national security, such as the US, the UK and other states.

    Israel has been victimized by warmongering Arabs who have attacked Israel in numerous wars, including the 1947 war, 1948 war, 1967 war and 1973 war.

    Israel is a small country the size of Vermont, one of the smallest countries in the US, with just 5 million Jews, surrounded by nearly 30 hostile Arab countries and 350 million belligerent Arabs.

    “It is now a blight unto the nations…doing to Gazans what the Wehrmacht did to Jews in Warsaw. “

    Israel is a beacon of democracy, human rights and civil liberties in the otherwise despotic, autocratic Arab Middle East. The success achieved by Israel is just a few decades is remarkable.

    “So the next time you feel bad for Jews being humiliated, abused, and killed in Holocaust films, remember: The IDF and Knesset think it’s kosher to do the same now to Arabs.”

    Jews are not humiliated or abused. Most of the great contributions to civilization, from science, academia, economics, literature, medicine and law have been from Jews, including monotheism.

    While there are only 13 million Jews in the world, Jews have been awarded an impressive 160 Nobel Prizes. There are 1.5 BILLION Muslims in the world, yet, only 3 Muslims have won Nobel Prizes.

    The number of other awards for Jewish achievements would take hours to list.

    Now, even an ignoramus like you is better informed.

  4. Avatar sms says:

    Read AlQuran ,the final revelation, before it is too late. Read the stories about taurat, Solomon Moses and other prophets. God will surely helped the clean hearted to find their ways.

  5. Avatar nurlhaq says:

    nonie, you are worst than a zionist jew. you are a zionist arab. you are not ignorant. you are a participating and willing tool of the zionist state, its thoughts and ideas. pacifist? unarmed? who were they?whirling dervishes? your statements make avigdor lieberman look like an enlightened philospher. arabs from israel have full rights? you are definitely not from palestine…

  6. Avatar Pilarerecto says:

    I see that Eric opened the spigot of the Internet Megaphone crowd once again. Eric, you want to be like Jerry Springer it seems. Why is that?

  7. Avatar AbeBird says:

    nurlhaq ; Nonie is worst than a ‘Zionist Jew’ because she reveals the truth about extreme fanatic Islam. Zionism is not a crime but a national movement of the Jewish people. Why can’t Jews have their own state to exist on the Land of Israel?

    Check yourself man before attacking those who doesn’t agree with your extreme ideas!

  8. Avatar AbeBird says:

    Shlomo Shunn aka Salman Sunny;

    the “problem” is that Islamic Nazis proPALgiting Jews and call the “Ashkenazis” while extreme Islam is the precise copy @ past of Nazism. Let alone the Muslims themselves cooperated with Nazi Germany in WWII and before in proPALganda Shiite and in fighting against revolting Christians and Jews for being Jews, in Yugoslavia and surrounding areas. Haj Amin el-Housseini enlisted thousands of Muslims from British Palestine to combat for the Nazis in Yugoslavia. Anwar Sadat was Nazi activist in Egypt while caught and arrested. In Iraq the Nazi Arabs caught regime for short period. Todays Islamic terror groups, on Palestine and else, are terrorizing Jews as the Nazis told the Arabs to do and the USSR exercised them. Israel is the now day Warsaw Ghetto but this time the Jews have the power to fight back.

    Israel is a democracy, the only one in all the ME @ N. Africa.

    Sex trade flourished next to the Islamic Intifada led by Israeli Arabs whore traders, which cooperated with Bedouins in Sinai and Northern Negev. Israeli police acted bravely against that phenomena and overwhelmingly succeeded. Many Arab merchants now stay behind bars.

    Israel fights terrorists as she has to fight them including using hi-tech missiles, tanks, drones, jets, phosphorus bombs, and attack helicopters. The fact that some civilians are hit too is due to the Islamic nature of putting civilians in front of their “brave warriors”, trying to influence the merciful Jewish fighter to deny any action. But some time merciful Jews has no other option but throwing the bomb on the terrorists together with their human shield. It is an Islamic moral problem which Israel has nothing to do with.

    Israel has been David by size and by virtue. The Palestinians are the wicked sword of the Arabs’ Goliath.

  9. Avatar Brother Jonah says:

    Yes, Draconian tactics have ALWAYS worked in the past.

    Just ask Irgun and Haganah members and leaders. The New York Times just ran a Fluff Story piece on a marriage between two Irgun fighters or as the British called them “Terrorists”. The first official wedding officially in Israel.
    Seems that ol’ Terrorist word is kind of slippery and can be used for any purposes. The “Democratic” Israeli State assisted George Bush and Tony Blair and Gordon Brown to initiate the war against the PEOPLE of Iraq by continually propagating the lie about a million pounds of Nerve Gas. Blair and Brown have since Admitted nay, BOASTED that the reasons they and the Bush administration And Mossad, and IDF put forth at the United Nations in order to “justify” imprisoning Iraq in a so-called Democracy, modeled on the Knesset, but now the nation, the land and the people are the Slave Property of American based Corporations.

    The Likud Party and Mossad and IDF still stand behind those LIES. Are we to believe things written by people who are not only PROFESSIONAL LIARS but Arrogant Liars as well? Are we stupid, to be talked to like that?

    You earned your Chutzpah Merit Badge, Brownie Points and whatever cash IDF paid you for writing that dreck.
    If they didn’t pay you, you should demand they do. They pay a lot of others, like the NYT reporters and editors who wrote and published the Fluff Story about the Irgun wedding.

    There was ANOTHER such story that gets played on Religious channels here, about an Irgun “freedom fighter” carrying explosives and caught out after the British Imposed Curfew, sweating it, thinking he would be captured and shot, and is praying for Divine Intervention, the British who were looking for him caught instead some poor slob heading home from work on his bicycle and shot him as “he tried to escape” thus allowing the Irgun fighter to deliver the explosives, to a Safe House In A Jewish Housing Development

    But of course, Irgun and Haganah weren’t “hiding behind civilians” in any way, were they?

    George Washington, the Original Minutemen, and every militia member not officially a uniformed Army enlistee during OUR Revolution would be officially defined as TERRORISTS by today’s American, British, Israeli, Afghan-puppet and Iraqi-Puppet governments.

    The notion that you can control the Palestinian people under Israeli “law” without granting them full rights as citizens, as the IDF does to Gaza, goes against the concept of Nationalism and is instead Imperialism.
    Anybody who reads this knows that, those who deny it are not merely LYING but exercising an extreme Chutzpah practice of pissing on us and telling us it must be raining, and DEMANDING we believe that it’s raining.

    The Irgun couple whose romance was celebrated in Propaganda outlets, also robbed a train to buy explosives.

    Terrorism is an elusive term, yes? John McCain, Senator and former Presidential Candidate, was arrested by the police in the DR VietNam for using an airplane to murder citizens of the DRVN, a nation against which the United States had never declared war, and who had never declared war against the United States.
    Much like the “Terrorist” Attack on New York City on 9/11. Legally it’s the same kind of action. Despite that McCain was held as a Prisoner Of War and complained that he wasn’t treated better under the Geneva Conventions regarding POWs, the same Conventions the United States and Israel refuse to admit would also apply to Arabs captured, or murdered, in The Arabs’ Own Countries.
    The British refused to honor those long-standing rules of engagement, meant to prevent the “Radicalizing” of the target populations, in this case Islamic people worldwide, and to prevent the peoples against whom War Crimes are committed from feeling perfectly justified to provide a tit-for-tat vengeance against any soldiers of the offending Army WHEN they’re captured.
    One of the biggest and oldest rules of War is that you ain’t going to win every battle.

    American Imperial Storm Troopers and IDF Imperial Storm Troopers walk patrol through the ruins of many former Empires every day. Yet they still blindly follow Imperialist leaders who tell them they’ll succeed where the other Empires failed, using the same Imperial statement “We’ll win because we have the mightiest Army the world has ever seen!”

    The British were one such empire. They not only denied the rights of the people they conquered, just as IDF and Mossad do to Palestine, in what’s now Israel and Palestine, they did it to Iraq, Persia, Afghanistan, what’s now Pakistan, what’s now the State of India, in China, Kenya, Zimbabwe when it was called Rhodesia, and all their Draconian methods of “managing” the revolutions and intifadas in those countries succeeded…

    In arousing revolutionary sentiments and sympathies for the revolutionaries, not only in those particular countries but in every nation to which the refugees from those nations fled.

    Like the Irish in America. America had been given a slight taste of what the British did to similar revolutionaries in Ireland.
    By the way, the IRA are still declared to be a Terrorist organization by Israel.

    The POW status accorded John McCain and every other person captured within the bounds of the sovereign nation of the DR VietNam while committing acts of terrorism against the citizens of DRVN were not accorded to the VietMinh AKA “Cong” soldiers captured in their own homeland, the RVN. Instead Americans funded torture centers and death camps, for these captured “Terrorists”.

    IDF and American and British Imperial Storm Troopers tread the soil once claimed by Empires both ancient and recent. And fail to see the connection.
    The statement that they’ll prevail because of their mighty armies shakes their collective fist in the face of God.

    I don’t know if you’re familiar with Jewish scriptures, it seems a lot of the so-called Israeli Jews who have championed the cause of IDF here strangely weren’t familiar…

    But Nebuchadnezzar of Babylon made a similar statement, read the book of Daniel to see how well THAT worked out.

    Also his grandson Belshazzar.

    My words will echo what God sent a disembodied hand to write on his wall in blood.

    Mene, mene, Tekel Peres. Mene, Mene, Tekel Upharsin.

    Would you be surprised to know that I’ve also read Leviticus? The parts about judging by equal measures, everything from buying groceries and gold and silver, the weights have to be equivalent, but also in judging criminal cases… EQUAL. You would have to judge Hamas by the same measure you wish for IDF and Mossad, and if you claim a right to over-ride the Laws of Judgments handed down by Moses then you Blaspheme.

    You should repent.

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