AMF statement on the Gaza flotilla incident


This is the statement released on the day news broke about the “freedom flotilla’ incident. I publish it here for the sake of clarity and  perspective on the position of the publisher of Medialternatives.

AMF condemns Israel violence against humanitarian flotilla

The Alternative Media Forum condemns the excessive use of force by
Israel today against an international humanitarian aid flotilla. The
government of Israel appears to have lost all sense of the reality of
the situation — killing civilians, endangering the lives of activists
(amongst whom are also Holocaust survivors) and jeopardizing the life of
well-known South African community radio news presenter Gadija Davids.

We are both shocked and dismayed at the continuing saga involving a
conflict which appears to be getting worse by the day, and from which
either side appears unable to extricate itself. The use of violence, is
not only irrational but a clear sign that Israel has no sense of the
proportion of the conflict.

The solution to the Palestinian/Israeli crisis is not through the use of
violence and name-calling but through better communication and dialogue
on either side.

The medieval siege of Gaza also makes absolutely no sense in the
Information Age, in which borders and boundaries are no longer
circumscribed by maps, but rather by news-wires, IP addresses and
computer networks.

We therefore condemn the regressive closure of ports by Israel, and the
building of walls in the interests of furthering nation-hood at any cost.

The Law of Blockade, as advocated by Israel, does not apply to armed
conflicts in our day and age in the way they might have been applied
once during the Middle ages, or during the time of King Solomon.

Applying the example of South Africa in this instance also does more
harm than good, since our calling for sanctions against Israel has had
the perverse effect of sustaining Israeli calls for a continuing and
total blockade of Gaza, thus fueling further suffering against its
people. The Israeli/Palestinian problem should therefore be dealt with
on its own terms and with the interests of all the people affected in mind.

The ongoing conflict and todays massacre does not bode well for World
Peace and for the safety and security of our own communities within the
International Order.

We therefore have no hesitation in demanding the blockade against Gaza
be lifted and that local activists at very least familiarize themselves
with the language and arguments being used on either side, so that our
responses to the tragedy are informed and rational.

ALTERNATIVE MEDIA FORUM
PO BOX 4398
CAPE TOWN
8000

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