In the darkness of night, seventy miles out to sea, in the international waters beyond Israel, 19 people were shot to death by elegantly armed Israeli soldiers. Perhaps Israel hoped the night would shroud the horror of their young people's actions--give them guns, give them nationalistic fervor, give them heavy doses of Israel's exceptionalism and turn them loose on the "enemy." I am writing words in shock, in despair, in rage--I am taking in the shouts of pain and disbelief from my peace activist comrades around the world, including Israel. We can reach each other, but we cannot stop a nation gone mad and all the others who empower the killers--the American government who pours money into the military coffers of Israel--paying for those helicopters from which the young people lowered them selves onto the boats, paying for those state of the art commando uniforms, the guns which they turned on those marked only as the enemies of the Jewish state. I want to say I love you, all who tonight sit at their screens, as I do, reaching out, so we are not alone with the horror of witness only, we recommit to honoring human life, to honoring each one who died in the darkness of the night, amidst a cargo of hope. We do not know the names or countries of those who have died--that will come in the morning light. We do not know if Hedy survived or did Israeli bullets do what the concentration camps could not. Again, as I have always written, I write from a Jewish heart, Israel is my concern, my burden, my shame--and activism in the face of the brutalities of a mad State is my Jewish heritage.
From on the boats in the flotilla:
Lubna: Greta urgent we have threat from Israel
Greta: Lubna. What is happening?
Lubna: two Israeli ships coming toward us
Greta: Please try to stay on this so I can tweet it
Lubna: they contact the ship asked who we are and dissappeared now they getting close to the ship we can see them stay here 3 boats coming not two 3Israeli boats we are 78 mile from Israel
Greta: I'll keep writing
Lubna: people here their life jackets every body peppering here
Greta: ok. You are the lifeline to our Twitter account.
Lubna: we may loose the wireless, we didn't expect them now, we thought they will arrive at the morning. Please stay in touch with the other boats.
Sent at 10:50 PM on Sunday
Greta : We can't reach anyone
Sent at 10:52 PM on Sunday
Today, I just received word that Hedy Epstein was not on any of the flotilla boats; she is in Cyprus, waiting for another flotilla.
Greta: Where are you? Are you there?