[Marxism] Iran and Libya: paper tigers

Louis Proyect lnp3 at panix.com
Wed Jul 14 08:01:51 MDT 2010


Iran activists cancel Gaza aid flotilla 'due to Israeli threats'
Separate Iranian ship heads to Gaza via Caspian Sea after Egypt 
denies Israel request to prevent vessels in Suez Canal.
By Haaretz Service Tags: Gaza flotilla Iran Gaza

One of the organizers of an Iranian aid flotilla that was to said 
to Gaza in efforts to break Israel's naval blockade on the 
territory, announced Thursday that the event has been cancelled 
due to "Israeli threats."

A separate Iranian ship carrying 60 Iranian activists was being 
prepared to sail to Gaza, according to Army Radio. This after the 
Lebanese media reported several days ago that Egypt has denied 
Israel's request to prevent Iranian ships from passing through the 
Suez Canal toward Egypt.

Meanwhile Thursday, the U.S. State Department issued a statement 
calling the aid flotillas to Gaza irresponsible.

"Mechanisms exist for the transfer of humanitarian assistance to 
Gaza by member states and groups that want to do so," the U.S. 
State Department said regarding Lebanese plans to ship aid to 
Gaza. "Direct delivery by sea is neither appropriate nor 
responsible, and certainly not effective, under the circumstances."

The Lebanese and Iranian efforts come after a tragic incident 
aboard a Turkish aid ship, part of an 8-ship Turkish flotilla, 
which was headed for Gaza on May 31. Israeli navy commandos, 
intent on preventing the ship from reaching Gaza's shore, boarded 
the ship, and were met by a violent mob wielding sticks and 
knives. The clash that ensued resulted in the deaths of nine 
Turkish activists.



Aid ship, flanked by Israeli missile boats, heads for Egypt, not Gaza
Libyan charity appears to decide reaching blockaded territory is 

by Amy Teibel

JERUSALEM — A Libyan charity's aid ship, flanked by Israeli 
missile boats, was sailing in the direction of an Egyptian port on 
Wednesday, apparently deciding not to defy Israel's naval blockade 
of the Hamas-ruled Gaza Strip.

Egypt's state news agency MENA cited an unidentified security 
official as saying that Egyptian authorities and the Red Crescent 
medical service were "making preparations" to receive the 
Moldovan-flagged Almathea.

An Israeli military official, speaking on condition of anonymity 
because he was not authorized to discuss the ship's course, 
confirmed that the vessel was headed in the direction of the 
Egyptian port of El-Arish.

With the vessel's organizers insisting the ship would go to 
Hamas-ruled Gaza and Israel insisting it would not, the potential 
for a showdown on the high seas had loomed large. Framing the 
face-off was a deadly Israeli naval raid of another 
blockade-busting ship in May.


An Al-Jazeera reporter on board the Almathea reported that two 
Israeli missile boats were close to its left side to prevent it 
from veering to nearby Gaza. The Egyptian port of El-Arish was on 
the ship's right.

Conflicting messages on Tuesday created confusion over whether the 
Amalthea intended to try to run the blockade or not.

Israeli military officials said the ship's captain informed Israel 
he was heading for the Egyptian port. Egypt had promised to 
transfer the ship's supplies to Gaza if the vessel docked there.

More information about the Marxism mailing list