Yesterday we were glued to the television and radio all day as we watched the story unfold of the heroic Israeli operation to board and stop the flotilla to Gaza. Of course, the entire world seems to be set against Israel now, even more than before, basing their opinions on lies and distortions of the truth. As you follow the news in your own countries, please keep this in mind:
1. Israel has been blockading Gaza since the seizure of our soldier Gilad Shalit by the Hamas, an act of war, accompanied by ongoing missile and rocket attacks against Israel from Gaza. Shalit is being held against international law, without access to the International Red Cross. Blockade in this situation is legitimate and acceptable under international law.
2. Israel has been providing some 15,000 tons of food and medicines to Gaza throughout, via recognized international aid organizations. There is no hunger or other humanitarian crisis in Gaza.
3. Israel repeatedly offered the flotilla the opportunity to dock in Israel and have the contents of the ships transferred to Gaza after inspection to insure no weapons or other dangerous items were concealed among the cargo. The flotilla organizers refused repeatedly, even minutes before the IDF’s operation.
4. The flotilla organizers defined themselves as peace activists. In fact, there were Weapons used to attack IDF Soldiersterrorists. As the IDF soldiers were lowered onto the Marmara ship by helicopter, in what they expected to be a riot-quelling and arrest operation, they were met with unexpected violence — clubs, knives, metal objects, and even guns were used to attack and injure our soldiers. When it became clear that their lives were threatened, they shot live fire.
5. Arab and other hostile media were quick to announce that 15 were killed. In fact, only nine were killed. Six IDF soldiers were injured, two of them seriously. All of the injured have been hospitalized in Israeli hospitals where they are receiving the finest care.
6. Close to 500 were detained and placed in a detention facility in Beersheva, where they are able to make phone calls, receive visitors, and have excellent conditions, all at the expense of the Israeli government.
7. About 50 agreed to voluntarily leave Israel and were escorted to Ben Gurion Airport where they were flown to their countries, at the expense of Israel.