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Prior to its violent confrontation with Israeli commandos, the commander of the six-ship pro-Palestinian flotilla announced participants were planning to use “resistance” and declared the ship’s activists wanted to die as “martyrs” more than they wanted to reach the Gaza Strip, according to Hamas television.
Israeli naval commandos encountered heavy resistance and live fire when they raided the flotilla. Nine activists were killed, and dozens of others reportedly were injured. Several Israeli commandos also were hurt.
One day before the confrontation, a university lecturer in Gaza stated on Hamas-run Al Aqsa television the commander of the Gaza flotilla had announced participants were planning to use “resistance” and that they wanted to die.
Abd Al-Fatah Shayyeq Naaman, a lecturer in Islamic law at a university in Yemen, who visited Gaza, stated: “The [Gaza] flotilla commander said yesterday: ‘We will not allow the Zionists to get near us and we will use resistance against them.’ How will they wage resistance? They will resist with their fingernails. They are people who seek martyrdom for Allah, as much as they want to reach Gaza, but the first [Martyrdom] is more desirable.”
Naaman’s remarks were translated from Arabic by Palestinian Media Watch.
Yesterday, WND reported activists on the flotilla shouted anti-Jewish battle cries and spoke of using “resistance” against Israel, with one participant stating she saw only two possible outcomes for the boat occupants – “either martyrdom or reaching Gaza.”
The main flotilla ship was named the MV Rachel Corrie, taking on the name of a far-left American 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 AD 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.”
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