National Sections of the L5I:

UN fails to condemn Israel

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After ten hours discussion – much of it in secret - the United Nations Security Council has failed to condemn Israeli piracy against the Freedom Flotilla.

Its final resolution merely “regrets the loss of life and injuries resulting from the use of force during the Israeli military operation” and “condemns those acts which resulted in the loss of at least ten civilians.” The perpetrators are not named and shamed, let alone condemned.

The reason is obvious. The US would have vetoed any resolution condemning Israel. This proved yet again that any US Administration will guarantee immunity for its Zionist agent in the Middle East whatever it does.

The only difference is style not substance - the brazen arrogance of George Bush Jnr versus the self-serving hypocrisy of Obama or Hilary Clinton. All their propaganda about international law, democracy, human rights counts for nothing whenever the racist apartheid state is concerned.

The acceptance by the Turkish government of a UN resolution which neither explicitly nor names nor condemns Israel’s actions is truly shameful – given most of the murdered activists appear to have been Turkish citizens.

Of course the US would have vetoed any honest resolution. But putting one to the vote was 100 times preferable to this cover up. UN resolutions (such as existing resolutions ordering Israel to lift the blockade of Gaza) in any case have no one to enforce them if the World Policeman is opposed to them. A US veto would have exposed the implication of US imperialism in the criminal act and put the US main allies on the spot, exposing them too.

Reporting from Jerusalem, Al Jazeera's Jacky Rowland said Israel's reaction has largely been of defiance. "...Israeli spin masters have been going into overdrive, doing their best possible to spin this event as though the Israeli commandos were not the ones attacking but rather the attack was perpetrated by people on board," she said

The western media, especially the BBC - slavishly pro-US since its neutering after the Iraq invasion - has been busily interviewing Israeli ambassadors and government spokespersons. This despite the fact that all the 600 victims (the only non-Israeli witnesses) are in Israeli custody and barred access to the media. Scarcely any representatives of the protest organsiers have been invited. This is not even the BBC’s supposedly famous principle of balance.

The German media too spread the Israeli lies. The liberal Der Spiegel “reports” “…as the Israeli army stormed the largest ship, the Mavi Marmara, the activists they encountered were in no way exclusively docile peaceniks. Some of the "peace activists" received the Israelis with crow bars and sling shots. Some of the self-professed "human rights activists" reportedly even tore the weapons from soldiers and began to shoot. Such “journalists” are just stenographers for the Israeli Defence Force.

The furthest Der Spiegel would go in condemnation of the Israeli piracy itself was that that they had “fallen into a trap” and “provided critics around the world with fresh ammunition.”

The media of a totalitarian regime could hardly do better in smothering the voices of the victims and trumpeting the lies of their victimisers.

Nevertheless around the world there have been outbursts of protest against the Israeli atrocity – organised at only a few hours notice. In Gaza, Syria, Jordan, Iran, Iraq and Egypt there have been demonstrations.

There were also thousands of demonstrators in Rome, and London and several hundreds of demonstrators in Berlin, Vienna, Sweden, Norway. High points were angry protests in Istanbul and Ankara outside the Israeli embassies and consulates and those in more than 20 cities in Greece and in Paris, where the Israeli Embassy and the Champs Elysées was blocked by a huge protest. Riot police used tear gas. In Athens too, riot police used tear gas and stun grenades to disperse thousands of Greeks and Arabs protesting outside the Israeli Embassy and 2,000 people demonstrated in Thessaloniki, Greece’s second city.

In several European cities supporters of the League for the Fifth International and Revolution the socialist youth movement have been prominent. Such mass mobilisations should continue and increase in size in the coming week. There are vital immediate demands we should be forcing governments to concede. These must include

– the immediate and unconditional release of the bodies of the victims and the liberation of all the captives of the Israeli pirates. They must have unhindered access to the world’s media.

– an immediate halt to the western media’s churning out of Israeli propaganda. Trade unions of journalists’ and other media workers should take direct action (pulling the plugs or halting the presses) to expose any editorial or government suppression of pro-Palestinian views and demanding access for the latter.

But we need to go further to help further the cause for which the murdered activists died – freedom the 1.5 million people of Gaza, 1,300 or whom perished in the Israeli bombing in 2008-09.

We must demand that all states end their de facto recognition of the blockade of Gaza, or in the case of Egypt their active support of it.

We must demand the the sending of a fleet of aid ships and land convoys to challenge and break the blockade.

We must demand he recognition of the elected Hamas administration in Gaza as the legitimate authority

We must demand the severing of all ties, diplomatic, economic, cultural and military with Israel until the siege of Gaza is totally lifted.