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Archive for June 6th, 2010

Exclusive: Nine Turkish men on board Mavi Marmara were shot a total of 30 times, autopsy results reveal

Robert Booth, The Guardian/UK, June 4, 2010

The funeral of one of the Turkish victims of the Gaza flotilla    raid
Crowds at the funeral of one of the Turkish victims of the Gaza flotilla raid, at the Beyazit mosque in Istanbul. Photograph: Vadim Ghirda/AP

Israel was tonight under pressure to allow an independent inquiry into its assault on the Gaza aid flotilla after autopsy results on the bodies of those killed, obtained by the Guardian, revealed they were peppered with 9mm bullets, many fired at close range.

Nine Turkish men on board the Mavi Marmara were shot a total of 30 times and five were killed by gunshot wounds to the head, according to the vice-chairman of the Turkish council of forensic medicine, which carried out the autopsies for the Turkish ministry of justice today.

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by Pat Buchanan, creators.com, June 4, 2010

In June 1948, our wartime ally imposed a blockade on Berlin, cutting off and condemning to death or Stalinist domination 2 million Germans, most of whom, not long before, had cheered Adolf Hitler.

Harry Truman responded with the Berlin airlift, in perhaps the most magnanimous act of the Cold War.

For nine months, U.S. pilots flew into Tempelhof, carrying everything from candy to coal, saving a city and earning the eternal gratitude of the people of Berlin, and admiration everywhere that moral courage is admired.

That was an America that lived its values.

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Staff Sergeant Brags of Role in Massacre

by Jason Ditz, Antiwar.com,  June 4, 2010

Autopsies are coming out today revealing some details about the circumstances of the Israeli attack which left at least nine aid workers dead. Doctors say that several of the victims were shot in the head and that in at least one case the gun was just inches from the aid worker’s head when fired.

But additional information is also coming in in the form of a report from an unnamed Israeli staff-sergeant, who claims proudly to have single-handedly killed at least six of the civilian aid workers.

The staff-sergeant says he has no doubt everyone on board was a “terrorist” and claimed there were secretly dozens of “hardcore mercenaries” on board.

The staff-sergeant’s story is being well received in Israel, where the killings have been lionized by a sympathetic media and by government officials eager to cash in on the latest jingoist craze. He is now being praised for “stabilizing the situation” and is being considered for a medal of valor for his killings.

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Israel’s leaders, both civilian and military, are not fumbling, hysterical novices. Their actions are deliberate and carefully weighed. To realise its expansionist ambitions, Israel has always sought to avoid serious negotiations with the Palestinians because, if negotiations were to succeed, they would inevitably mean ceding territory, notes Patrick Seale.

Middle East Online,  June 4, 2010

Israel’s deadly commando assault last Monday on the Free Gaza flotilla has been variously denounced around the world as state terrorism, piracy, a war crime, and as the latest example of Israel’s arrogant contempt for international law and its criminal indifference for (non-Jewish) human life.

In view of the enormity of the act — and the toll of dead and wounded among unarmed activists seeking to break the three-year Gaza siege — these charges appear justified. But they do not explain why Israel chooses to behave as it does. Its leaders, both civilian and military, are not fumbling, hysterical novices. Their actions are deliberate and carefully weighed. So what is the cold-eyed strategy behind them?

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