Israel: Mistakes Made in Flotilla Raid

Published: July 12th 2010
in News » Israel

Gaza flotilla ship Mavi Marmara

According to an Israeli military inquiry report, authorities did not do a satisfactory job of planning their raid on the Gaza flotilla. Israeli commandos boarded six ships heading to Gaza, and experienced serious problems on just one – the Mavi Marmara. As Israeli soldiers boarded the ship on May 31, 2010, they were immediately attacked. Video evidence shows the soldiers being struck with club-like objects and metal rods by pro-Palestinian activists. Israeli soldiers reacted in self-defence, which lead to the deaths of nine pro-Palestinian activists and many injuries.


The military report blamed intelligence for flaws in preparation, as the possibility for violent resistance upon boarding the ship was underestimated. “We found that there were some professional mistakes regarding both the intelligence and the decision-making process and some operational mistakes,” said retired general Giora Eiland, author of the report. Eiland also referenced the lack of communication among intelligence units, and the absence of a back-up plan in case of violence. Although there is no mention of the possibility of any firings, some senior officers could be demoted or forced to resign.


The report praised the navy commandos that carried out the raid. “We did find some very positive findings, and one of them that should be emphasized is the very professional and courageous way that the Israeli commando behaved,” said Eiland.


Israel maintains that it had the legal right to board the ships in order to prevent weapons from being brought into Gaza and that any violent measures taken by Israeli soldiers were in self-defence.

Related articles: (flotilla, gaza, mavi marmara, turkey, navy)

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