Jewish Gaza-bound activists: IDF used excess force
[Middle East News Service comments: Former IDF/IAF
pilot Yonathan Shapira said that there were "no words to
describe what we went through during the
takeover." Shapira said the activists, who he said displayed no violence, were met with extreme IDF brutality, adding that the soldiers "just jumped us, and hit us. I was hit with a taser gun."
The Hebrew version of this item is slightly
different. The English does contain the most important
paragraph (the reason for checking the translation):
Eli Usharov, a reporter for Israel's Channel 10 affirmed Shapira's version of the events, telling Haaretz that the takeover was executed with unnecessary brutality.
"They used a taser gun against Yonatan. He screamed and was dragged to the military boat," Usharov said, adding that both Yonatan and his brother Itamar were handcuffed.
The Channel 10 reporter also said that the activists managed to have a serious heart-to-heart conversation with the troops once they were all placed on board the military vessel, and that "overall the atmosphere was good."
What is missing is the following paragraph: "Another participant, Rami Elhanan said that 'all the time I keep on thinking of my daughter Smadar who was killed in a suicide bombing and during the entire voyage my head was filled with thoughts of her. I hope that siege of Gaza will be removed because we are simply suffocating a million Palestinians with fences.' Elhanan's daughter was killed in the Jerusalem Mall bombing in 1997."
Jewish Gaza-bound activists: IDF used excessive force in naval raid
Activists aboard Gaza-bound ship 'Irene' counter IDF version that the vessel was taken over in a peaceful manner.
By Yanir Yagna
Israel Defense Forces soldiers used excessive force while taking over a Gaza-bound aid ship organized by Jewish and Israeli activists, the boat's passengers said Tuesday, countering the military's official version claiming that the takeover had been uneventful.
Earlier Tuesday the IDF reported that Israeli naval commandos peacefully boarded the Jewish aid boat attempting to break a naval blockade on Gaza, saying "IDF naval forces recently boarded the yacht 'Irene', and it is currently being led to the Ashdod seaport along with its passengers."
However, testimonies by passengers who were released from police questioning later in the day seemed to counter the IDF's claims, with Israeli activist and former Israel Air Force pilot Yonatan Shapira saying that there were "no words to describe what we went through during the takeover."