Analysis: Israel’s Flotilla Raid Involved Espionage, Sabotage

MV Mavi Marmara

Mavi Marmara

The intense worldwide debate about last Monday’s Israeli raid on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla has concentrated relatively little on the operation’s intelligence facets. As I explain in an article published yesterday at Daily News Corner, this is puzzling, considering that the intelligence aspects of the attack are largely responsible for its bloody outcome. The Gaza-bound ships had drawn minor international attention prior to the first media reports of the raid in international waters by the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). But the effort by the Israeli security services to prevent the flotilla from reaching its intended destination did not begin in the Mediterranean Sea. It started several months before the fleet of ten vessels was even chartered by the Humanitarian Aid Foundation (ÍHH). Indeed, despite the revered image that is often projected by the Israeli security services, faulty intelligence may be at the root of the debacle on the MV Mavi Marmara, the Gaza Freedom Flotilla’s largest ship, where IDF commandos killed nine and injured over 60 passengers and crew. Read article →

Turkey, Iran, offer warship protection for Gaza flotillas

Recep Tayyip Erdoğan

Tayyip Erdoğan

Close aides to the Turkish Prime Minister’s office have disclosed that Ankara is funding a new fleet of ships to sail to Gaza under protection by Turkish warships. Iran’s Revolutionary Guards Corps have also offered warship protection. The office of Turkey’s Prime Minister, Tayyip Erdogan, is now actively assisting the Turkish-based Humanitarian Aid Foundation (ÍHH) in fundraising for the acquisition of a new fleet of ships to carry humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip. Last Monday, an ÍHH-funded flotilla bound for Gaza was raided in international waters by the Israeli Navy, which diverted the ships to Israel after killing nine and injuring over 60 passengers. According to reports from The Associated Press and Agence France Presse, Mr. Erdogan plans to be among the passengers of the new flotilla, which will be escorted en route to Gaza by Turkish warships. Meanwhile, reports from Iran’s government-aligned Mehr News Agency indicate that the country’s Islamic Revolutionary Guards Corps (IRGC) have offered their warships as protection for future aid ship convoys to the Hamas-controlled Palestinian territory. Read more of this post

News you may have missed #368 (Gaza flotilla edition V)

  • Israelis sabotaged flotilla ships before departure. Israel gave strong indications today that its forces had secretly sabotaged some of the ships bound for Gaza as part of the Gaza Freedom Flotilla. Comments to that effect by Israeli deputy defense minister Matan Vilnai appeared to dovetail with reports that two of the vessels malfunctioned at the same time and in the same way.
  • Activist website downed before Israeli attack on flotilla. The online home of the Humanitarian Aid Foundation (İHH), one of the organizers of a convoy of six aid vessels bound for the Gaza Strip, was hit by a denial-of-service (DoS) attack moments before the Israel military brutally attacked the convoy in international waters on Monday.

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