Gaza Flotilla 2: Madness by Sea and Now Air
Rapture Forum Staff: Chris
Right now the Middle East remains tension filled at this time as the Middle East peace process remains in a stalemated condition with no sign of progress anywhere. To try to break the deadlock the Palestinians are still pressing ahead with a September U.N. vote for a declaration of a Palestine state to be carved out of the current state of Israel. To make things worse, the anti-semitic and leftist elements in the world have put together another "humanitarian flotilla" in an effort to try to break the naval blockade Israel maintains on Gaza as a result of arms smuggling by the Hamas government of the Strip. This flotilla is just like the deadly one from 2010 except that it involves an numerous number of boats as opposed to the single ship that sailed last year. However, recent reports are showing that the "Gaza Flotilla 2" has shrunk in size recently due to political pressure by the international community on the flotilla organizers. Governments such as Greece have been active in helping to thwart the flotilla nonsense and have stopped some of the ships from departing port. The Jerusalem Post is reporting that flotilla organizers have entertained the idea of having the aid that was to be sailed into Gaza shipped by the international community as opposed to trying to break the Israeli naval blockade. The Jerusalem Post reports:
Organizers of the flotilla seeking to break Israel's blockade over the Gaza Strip are considering an offer by Athens to allow Greek Navy ships to transfer the humanitarian aid they had planned to bring with them to Gaza on their behalf. Nevertheless, organizers said Sunday night that they were still looking into ways to circumvent a Greek government order preventing the ships from leaving Greece for the Gaza Strip.
"It is possible that this is under consideration but…that is not considered breaking the siege," said Ewa Jasiewicz, one of the leaders of the Free Gaza Movement, which is in charge of the flotilla. "We want to break the siege and the flotilla is not about expanding the drip of humanitarian aid to Gaza."
However, later reports are that the organizers have rejected the international intervention and the plans at the moment are that the flotilla will head to Gaza on Monday. While the flotilla size at one time numbered around 15 ships and 1,500 activists, it appears that the number of boats that will actually participate in the flotilla will be significantly less and that the activists numbers have dwindled to as few as 350. This is good news for Israel who has been working hard to have the flotilla stopped by levering political influence across the region. Warming ties between Israel and Greece have paid wonderful dividends as the Greeks have stopped several boats from leaving port and headed to Gaza. Despite the cooperation from Greece there is a possibility that the ships could still sail out and defy the law in doing so. This issue is being considered by the flotilla organizers. But despite the slow down on the flotilla activities, the Israeli Navy maintains a constant state of readiness for any potential problems. The Jerusalem Post article goes on to further report:
Due to the chance that the ships might still set sail, the Israel Navy is continuing to maintain a state of readiness if it will need to stop the ships from reaching Gaza. On Sunday, senior government officials expressed optimism with the setbacks that the flotilla was continuing to encounter and pointed to the fact that some of the participants had already given up and left Greece back for their home countries.
"We obviously still need to prepare for the possibility that flotillas will arrive," Defense Minister Ehud Barak said before the weekly cabinet meeting. "We are seeing positive developments regarding the flotilla. The governments of Greece, Cyprus, and Turkey are actively stopping it. This is a result of extensive work by the Foreign Ministry and the prime minister." Meanwhile Sunday, Hamas called on Greece to overturn its decision and to allow the ships top sail to Gaza. Hamas's foreign minister said it was regrettable that Greece had succumbed to international pressure.
If this wasn't enough excitement surrounding the flotillas, many of the activists numbering around 700 have declared their intention to fly into Israel and land at Ben Gurion airport in order to protest Israel's naval blockade of Gaza. Another Jerusalem Post article reports:
New York activist Laura Durkay plans to name Palestine as her destination when she lands at Ben-Gurion Airport this Friday, even though such a response is likely to ensure her deportation. As pro-Palestinian activists are struggling to set sail to Gaza from Greece, a separate, informal group, is targeting Ben- Gurion Airport. Durkay is one of 700 activists, mostly from Europe, who plan to land in Ben-Gurion on the same day, in an event titled, "Welcome Palestine." They hope to support Palestinian statehood and the struggle of the Palestinian people against Israel's "occupation" of the West Bank.
The article goes on to further explain the so called rationale behind the "fly-ins" and that is to cause disturbances and to begin what was referred to as the "march on Palestine". Weeks ago many of you will recall that there were squirmishes at the border between Israel and the surrounding neighbors as some demonstrators and protesters tried to break the border and march into Israel. This of course resulted in trouble but Israel prevailed in keeping the protesters on their side of the fence. The Jerusalem Post article goes on to further report:
The Foreign Ministry has already said that it plans to prevent the group's entry into Israel. In the past Israel has denied entry to international activists it believes plan to create disturbances while they are here. As a result, many international activists tend to misrepresent the purpose of their visit when quizzed by custom officials at the airport. "Instead of lying about their destination, they will say that they are coming for a week of solidarity with the Palestinian people," Israeli activist Sergio Yahini said. If the activists are denied entry, there will be a demonstration at the airport, and Israel will have to deal with the deportation of 700 activists, Yahini added.
On a video posted on YouTube, Palestinian activist Lubna Marsawa said, "What we are planning for the 8th of July could be the beginning of the marches to Palestine. We are fed up with words and we need to take action." A press release put out by the group said that the activists had been invited by some 40 Palestinian organizations.
While the protesters and activists call for greater freedoms of movements, etc. as it relates to Gaza, this under normal situations would be a good idea but the fact is that Israel must inspect cargo headed into Gaza as arms smuggling and the threat of a continued military style build up in the strip continues to raise the prospects of conflict down the road. The activists play on part of the story yet conveniently leave out the true threat of "free movement" to Gaza. This would be suicidal by Israel as it relates to their security. This is already threatened by the fact that the Egyptians have already re-opened the Rafah crossing and allowed access to the Gaza Strip through this way. But this is not enough for the flotilla organizers and their allies as they expect Israel to just open themselves up to the terrorists and in turn decrease the security situation in the state of Israel. This just doesn't make any sense which is why many analysts have noted that this flotilla and "Free Gaza" movement is not about a humanitarian crisis, but rather it is about "conflict" with Israel and unfortunately the Bible is clear that there will be conflict in the future. It is unfortunately unavoidable.
For now all we can do is watch the region and pay attention tomorrow to see if the flotillas do in fact leave port in Greece. The situation is getting tense and with the expected vote on Palestine in September, things are looking pretty interesting right now as it relates to Bible prophecy. As one article today mentioned as it concerns the September vote, we are entering "unchartered" waters and there is not telling how things could play out between now and then. One thing is for sure, Bible prophecy watchers need to pay close attention to this flotilla situation and the "fly-in" that is expected. Now more than ever Jerusalem and Israel are becoming more and more a burdensome stone for the entire world. Stay tuned!