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It is difficult to imagine what might produce a longing for the good old days of George W. Bush, but the Obama Administration is certainly approaching that tip point. First there was National Intelligence Director Dennis Blair spelling out a policy of assassination of American citizens overseas based on suspicion and secret evidence and then there was last week’s revelation that the Justice Department guidelines for the FBI now permit relatively free searches of all sorts of personal information that once was regarded as private. The searches are without judicial oversight and there does not have to be any evidence that the suspect has committed a crime.

Now we have Hillary Clinton and company opening up the latest free fire zone against other American citizens who have done nothing wrong. The State Department spokeswoman Victoria Nuland, who is married to one of the ubiquitous Kagans, announced that “Groups that seek to break Israel’s maritime blockade of Gaza are taking irresponsible and provocative actions that risk the safety of their passengers.” Please note: per Nuland/Clinton the passengers on the unarmed vessels in international waters, all of whom have signed a pledge of non-violence, are risking their own safety if they get shot by the Israeli military.

Nuland added that Gaza is governed by Hamas, “a designated foreign terrorist organization,” and that aiding such a group “could violate U.S. civil and criminal statutes and could lead to fines and incarceration.” This means that giving a loaf of bread to a child in Gaza is indictable as support of a terrorist organization, since the government is run by Hamas.

Once upon a time the Secretary of State was supposed to protect Americans overseas, particularly when the Americans are not doing anything illegal. But that was before Israel and its Lobby decided what American citizens can and cannot do. A good friend of mine Ray McGovern, who is on the American vessel, is a deeply religious former CIA senior analyst. He has friends on the National Security Council who informed him last week that the US government would let the Israelis do whatever they want to the flotilla and would, in fact, approve of any action taken. In the aftermath, the State Department would do nothing to help any US citizen killed, injured, or arrested. Except possibly have them arrested a second time.

However one feels about the Israel-imposed blockade of Gaza, it is important to remember that the Americans and others involved in the flotilla are doing nothing illegal under international law. Their ships have been inspected and have only relief supplies on board. No one is armed. Their objection is to the Israeli, and American, assumption that Tel Aviv somehow has the right to punish the Gazans in perpetuity and thereby create a continuous humanitarian crisis for the local people because they elected the “wrong” party back in 2006. The Americans and other foreigners on the flotilla have a perfect right to express that view peacefully without being excoriated by Hillary before being executed by an IDF goon.

 

(Republished from The American Conservative by permission of author or representative)
 
• Category: Foreign Policy • Tags: Government Surveillance 
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  1. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    No suprise, really. How many people do you know that have heard of Tristan Anderson, Emily Henochowizc, or Christopher Whitman?

    But you can always find someone who has heard of Neda.

    Hillary Clinton cares about the welfare of Americans when it suits her political agenda. Unfortunately for Americans engaged in legal and non-violent protest against Israel, they do not fit into Clinton’s agenda. So the IDF can do whatever it wants to these people.

  2. Art R. says:

    Hillary learned her lesson with respect to Israel from the adverse publicity stemming from a joint appearance with Suha Arafat (wife of Yassir) in the west bank city of Ramallah in November, 1999. Mrs Arafat accused the Israelis of using poison gas against women and children causing increases in cancers and of poisoning wells. Now, Israel did and still does pump huge amounts of fossil water from beneath the west bank and sends it to Israel proper. This is not actually poisoning the wells, it is more like stealing a precious resource from a conquered people.

    Hillary did not immediately call out Suha on her comments.
    Bruce Teitlebaum, a campaign director for a political rival for the US Senate seat from New York, started the ball rolling by stating, “It’s inconceivable that there would be no comment from Mrs Clinton in the face of these abhorrent and ridiculous accusations.” Then the usual chorus chimed in.

    Hillary saved face by accusing Suha of making inflammatory statements that could derail the ‘peace process.’ And, of course, Hillary now knows better when it comes to supporting the Israeli position and heaping scorn on the Palestinians.

  3. Any chance the flotilla stops in Latakia, Nah. But maybe they will do some shopping in the new mall that just opened in gaza.

  4. Anonymous • Disclaimer says:

    Time was, in the 30s Americans and Brits dashed off with the Lincoln Brigade and other groups (some on the opposite side) to the Spanish Civil War. No prosecutions so far as I know. They were actually carrying weapons, unlike the explicitly peaceful Gaza protesters.

    Times change. With the Clintons it always boils down to pay-offs, corruption, blackmail, “family business”, so I suppose that since Hillary’s daughter is now married to the son of a Jewish convicted felon, Mom can occasionally be depended on to do her bit for Eretz israel.

  5. What a surprise, that the spouse of one of the several neocon warmongers named Kagan, would try to interfere with the flotilla trying to help break the Israeli blockade of Gaza. And that she would be able to use her position in the US State Dept. to do so.

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