A failure–or betrayal–of non-violence on the flotilla?

Was it a Non-Violent Flotilla or Intentionally Violent, Even Military Action?
By Rob Kall

I’ve been accustomed to seeing activists using the non-violent approaches of Ghandi and ML King to bring change to Gaza. I thought the Gaza Freedom Flotilla was one of those peaceful efforts. Rachel Corrie died hewing to those precepts. Her death has special meaning because she was engaging in non-violent protest.

Now I’m having some doubts. I have yet to speak to or hear from any of the people who
were on the flotilla, but a May 25th press release of the Free Gaza Team, which was one of the leading organizations of the flotilla stated, “”However, we will non-violently resist Israeli attempts to seize our boats.”

Non-violence is not easy in the face of police or military actions. It requires strong intention, strong group discipline and, often, significant training and preparation.

Read more.

2 replies on “A failure–or betrayal–of non-violence on the flotilla?”

This is a pretty schlocky article. I’m surprised you linked to it. Its author, Rob Kall, writes:

Israel was clearly ensnared in a trap that led to a horrific media disaster for Israel and all Jews.

Actually, it wasn’t a media disaster for all citizens of Israel, many of whom, be they Muslim, Christian, or Jewish, don’t support their state’s actions. Neither was it a media disaster for all Jews, many of whom don’t support Israel. It was a media disaster for Zionists, who come from all religious backgrounds.

If Rob Kall can’t complete the very basic task of disentangling the state of Israel from all Jews, then he really isn’t ready to write about the topic.

What he meant, I think, is that “Israel” IS “the Jews” in many minds—probably most minds.
The enlightened view that you describe, and (rightly) espouse, is NOT that common, as it depends on a fine distinction, and fine distinctions tend to disappear in the great roar of Received Opinion.

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