Paul McGeough is an award winning journalist, and probably next to Robert Fisk, the most knowledgeable and respected person in that profession on Middle-East affairs. He has interviewed al Qaeda and other groups that won’t normally provide interviews to western journalists.
McGeough and an Aussie photographer-journalist Kate Geraghty, both of whom worked for the Sydney Morning Herald (SMH), were among those on the peace flotilla and subsequently imprisoned by Israeli military until international pressure forced the Jewish State to release them.
Incidentally McGeough was the journalist who had to flee Iraq for his own life when in mid-2004 he revealed to the world how US pet and former Iraqi PM, Iyad Allapwi, had cold-bloodedly executed 6 prisoners, who were nothing more than “suspects”, in front of his troops, it was said, to straighten up their (the troops’) spines. He shot each and every one of those prisoners as Saddam Hussein had been accused of doing.
For more see my post America the Unfair - America the UnChampion of Democracy and America Maintaining Tradition in Sponsoring Allies.
Well, in the SMH’s Freed journos tell of Israeli commandos like 'hyenas hunting' McGeough and Geraghty, who were on another boat (the Challenger) gave us their insight of what happened and how they assessed the conduct of the Israelis, not just at sea but on land as well.
Geraghty said while she was photographing the Israelis boats she was tasered. Shane Dillion, the 1st mate of the Challenger said:
‘‘[Kate Geraghty] was leaning over the side of the boat to take a photograph down of one of the boats approaching us and they blasted her with a Taser.’’
Here is a report from a neutral Aussie journalist of being fired at by Israelis without provocation. It goes to debunk the Israeli lies that the protestors were violent. The Israelis have refused to release the entire tapes to international journalists who wanted those rather than edited snips of the videos.
The more likely truth is the Israelis were hellbent on 'punishing' the protestors severely (whether to kill or just injure them, one can't say) in the silly hope of deterring future protestors. Israelis are BIG on deterrence but alas, which nowadays isn't working for them. The Israelis have failed to update themselves with the resolve of a modern opposition.
Extracts of the SMH report follow:
Nine people were killed in the confrontation but Israel maintains that its commandos were attacked by the protesters. Geraghty believes she was hit by a stun gun fired by Israeli commandos after they boarded her ship. She suffered bruises, minor burns and nausea.
Geraghty said today that she was safe and "very happy" to have been released from detention.
While she had been "frightened" during the confrontation, she said her injuries were "minor" compared with what happened to others on board the boats.
His deportation was "an absolute disrespect by Israel" for democracy and the fundamental rights of journalists, McGeough said.
Well. so much for so-called Israeli democracy and freedom of the press.
The first mate on the Challenger One, Shane Dillon, called the Israeli raid "an act of piracy".
"It was an attack on a flotilla of peace boats in international waters. It was an act of piracy. The force used was excessive and unwarranted," Mr Dillon told Fairfax after arriving home in Dublin.
Mr Dillon said the mostly female activists on his boat were treated badly -- pushed and hit with rifles, shot in the face with paintball weapons at close range and beaten.
It's known that Israeli soldiers like to beat up or shoot women and children - they had demonstrated that in both Lebanon and Gaza.
And the congregation sent thither twelve thousand men of the valiantest, and commanded them, saying, Go and smite the inhabitants of Jabeshgilead with the edge of the sword, with the women and the children. [Judges 21:10]
If you want more of Israeli atrocities and war crimes, do read my other posts:
(1) Gaza war crimes till unaccounted for
(2) Neo-Nazis perpetuating Holocaust in Gaza