More on the Free Gaza Movement

Following the previous post concerning the Free Gaza Movement I received this article that I also thought worthy of publishing. It is written by Stuart Littlewood who is the author of the book Radio Free Palestine, which tells the plight of the Palestinians under occupation. What Littlewood outlines in the following article are some of the divisions amongst Palestinians, particularly the PA who do not seem to be supporting the efforts of volunteers trying to break the siege in Gaza.

When the Boats Arrive in Gaza
Stuart Littlewood, 15 August 2008

Is the Palestinian Authority for or against the siege? While others put on a show of solidarity with the brave ‘freedom’ voyagers as they set sail to break the siege of Gaza, where is the voice of the PA?

The siege has been going on for more than 2 years but here in the UK I have heard the Palestinian Delegation speak only once of the injustice, suffering and devastation. As far as I know, these ‘official’ representatives of the Palestinian people have said nothing in the media about the freedom boats, which potentially present the most important challenge to the Israeli occupation for a very long time.

Volunteers are doing in their small way what the EU – if it had a shred of moral decency – should have done massively with cargo ships, helicopters and the necessary armed escorts when this offence against every code of humanity was first committed. The slightest interference by Israel, or attempt to re-seal Gaza’s borders, should have resulted in the EU-Israel Agreements being torn up and consigned to the wastepaper basket of history. That, more than anything else, would have forced the Zionist land-grabbers and hate-mongers back in their box and set the scene for a no-nonsense solution to the 60 year-old conflict in the Holy Land.

Meanwhile we are left to speculate about where the Palestinian Authority really stands in all this. Its London Delegation was warned by activists to wake up and shape up but the general public still can’t detect a spark of life. Therefore the following email has been sent:

May we look forward to public words of support and encouragement from the Palestinian Delegation for the ‘freedom’ boats that are due to sail from Cyprus to Gaza in a bid to break Israel’s siege?

And what about the Palestinian Authority in Ramallah and its other outposts around the world… are the media likely to hear positive comment from them? Will PA dignitaries be among the welcoming committee if the boats get through?

The PA appears remarkably relaxed about the way Palestinians in Gaza – Muslims and Christians alike – have been crushed and their economy systematically wrecked by the merciless blockade. Assuming the boats do actually sail in the next few days, now is surely the time for a big show of solidarity, a spirit that is otherwise regrettably lacking in the Occupied Territories.

Volunteers from around the world are making an effort. Can we hope for the same from those who claim to govern? Would readers please give the Palestinian embassy/delegation in their own countries a similar prod?

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2 Responses to More on the Free Gaza Movement

  1. llwynn says:

    For more on the Free Gaza movement, see this Democracy Now! interview with three of the movement’s activists: Israeli anthropology professor Jeff Halper, journalist Lauren Booth, and Huweida Arraf, co-founder of the International Solidarity Movement. http://www.democracynow.org/2008/8/22/free_gaza_boats_set_sail_from

  2. Noor Hammad says:

    ‘Free Gaza’ boats reach Gaza coastline despite Israeli blockade.

    Reported by Al Jazeera – http://english.aljazeera.net/news/middleeast/2008/08/20088231408112340.html

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