- WND - http://www.wnd.com -

Flotilla activists 'tried to lynch Israeli soldiers'

Aerial footage of protesters attacking Israeli forces during flotilla raid

Activists on a six-ship flotilla headed to the Gaza Strip had planned to lynch the Israeli commandos who stormed the ship, according to indications at the scene encountered by Israeli forces.

Officials in the Israel Defense Forces told WND that when IDF forces stormed the ship, some participants onboard attempted to grab the Israeli commandos to lynch the forces with rope.

“They were fully prepared to provoke this deadly confrontation,” said an IDF official.

“Some of the participants tried to grab our forces while others were standing by with rope,” the official said. “The indications are the participants were trying to lynch the Israeli forces.”

Earlier today, Israeli navy commandos raided the flotilla, encountering heavy resistance and live fire from the activists. Several activists were killed and dozens were reportedly injured, as were several of the Israeli commandos.

The main flotilla ship was named the MV Rachel Corrie, taking on the namesake of a far-left activist from the International Solidarity Movement who died in 2003 while serving as a human shield to protect a terrorist.

An Al-Jazeera news report yesterday translated by Palestinian Media Watch documented men on the flotilla chanting, “[Remember] Khaibar, Khaibar, oh Jews! The army of Muhammad will return!”

That chant is often used at rallies for Hamas in the West Bank and Gaza Strip. Khaibar is the name of the last Jewish village defeated by Muhammad in 628. That battle marked the end of the Jewish presence in Arabia.

Al-Jazeera also interviewed a woman on the flotilla who said that the participants’ goal was “one of two happy endings: either Martyrdom or reaching Gaza.”

Al-Jazeera reported yesterday flotilla participants announced that they would use “resistance” against Israel.

One of the flotilla passengers is the former Melkite Greek archbishop of Jerusalem, father Hilarion Capucci, who was previously arrested for using his church car service to smuggle explosives, firearms and katyusha rockets into Israel for the PLO. Capucci freed after an appeal from the Vatican.

Israeli Naval Forces intercepted the flotilla and five other ships attempting to break the maritime closure of the Gaza Strip, a territory controlled by Hamas.

An Israel Defense Forces spokesperson told WND commandos boarded the ships after numerous warnings from Israel requesting the ships redirect toward the Israeli port of Ashdod where they would be able to unload their aid supplies, which could then be transferred to the Gaza Strip after undergoing security inspections.

During the boarding of one of the ships, the Marmara, activists onboard attacked IDF Naval personnel with live fire and light weaponry including knives and clubs, the IDF spokesperson said.