Was it only a few months ago that “flotillas” were the Alpha and Omega of the 24-hour news cycle?
Having managed to grab headlines at the cost of getting some of their allies killed, the “Israel Dislikers” spent the summer in hyperdrive, trying to gin up the same level of (self) righteous fury they’ve only managed during wars triggered by Hezbollah and Hamas and promising an endless flow of convoys designed to break Israel’s fully-legal blockade of Gaza.
So anything new on that front?
Well it looks like one group, Road to Hope (don’t you just love the names these militant/propaganda groups choose for themselves?) was able to set sail to Libya with a shipload of “urgent medical supplies” which I believe included a steamshovel (although I can’t seem to find a list of their cargo).
Their plan was to cross by land from Libya into Egypt, but when Egypt refused to let them in they decided to set sail again and deliver the goods by sea to the port of Al Arish. But a dispute over the additional 100,000 Pounds Sterling ($150,000+ US) led to a bizarre incident in which the Greek ship’s captain ditched most of the “humanitarian group” in Tobruk, Libya and set sail for Greece with a contingent of Road to Hopies still onboard (without travel paperwork or passports).
After multiple accusations of piracy, kidnapping and welching, it looks as though all of the people are back where they belong (the Greek ship’s captain behind bars and the passengers back in Europe where their moms can look after them) – although it’s not entirely clear where those “urgently needed” supplies have ended up. All in all, it seems like a lot of excess drama given that Israel already provides a mechanism for external humanitarian aid to get into Gaza (where it travels alongside the tons of aid Israel provides itself to the Strip).
Now convoy supporters have a ready explanation as to why things turned out so sub-optimally for them this time around: evil forces at work that created this mayhem by spreading around “Shylock’s Gold” (gee, I wonder who they could be talking about?).
Well as someone who is periodically accused of being in the pay of Mossad or AIPAC, all I can say is that the cost of running this blog (i.e., $0.00 paid to Google for a Blogger account and some personal time) seems pretty paltry compared to the cost of chartering ships to sail back and forth across the Mediterranean Sea. After all, if $150,000 was the cost of just adding one more leg to their sea journey, how much gold (Shylocks or others) was spent in total on just this one fiasco?
Ah well. At least this time around the high-seas fantasists managed to avoid getting anyone killed.