Israel Defense Forces sources reported to the Jerusalem Post that some of the activists on board the Gaza-bound flotilla are planning to kill Israeli soldiers if the IDF boards the ships and attempts to block them from breaking Israel’s maritime blockade of the region.
The IDF says some passengers onboard the flotilla ships have prepared sacks of sulfur to throw at Israeli soldiers. If sulfur is poured on a soldier it could render him paralyzed and helpless — and could be fired up like a torch with the flick of a match. If these reports are accurate, the soldiers on this mission are in grave danger, and will need to board the ships prepared for anything.
Of course, flotilla participants claim that the IDF’s concerns are only meant to give Israeli soldiers a pretense to use force. One of them, Dror Feiler, stated that “violent people are not permitted to take part in the flotilla….All of the passengers signed a pledge of non-violence.” But these assurances are totally implausible. Look at last year’s ordeal with the Mavi Marmara, when IDF soldiers, in full accordance with international law, attempted to stop a flotilla ship and were swarmed by a mob of club and knife-wielding thugs.
The “peaceful activists” were not so peaceful then. The flotilla ships have already sailed and are fast approaching — and Israelis know that things could easily go wrong, despite Israel’s peaceful intentions.