Photo: Yaron Brener
Ron Ben Yishai
Photo: Yaron Brener
Ron Ben-Yishai

Offer to Turkey misguided

Op-ed: Turkel’s report weakened by Israel’s compromise offer to Turkey over flotilla raid dispute

Part 2 of article


In the Turkel report’s chapter pertaining to the operation to stop flotilla participants from reaching Gaza, committee members ruled that Navy commandoes showed impressive restraint in the face of the violence directed at them.


It is doubtful whether in the midst of the type of battle that took place aboard the Marmara soldiers are able to spot the kinds of nuances that the committee used to scrutinize most of their actions. Yet even when using this strict test, which distinguishes between civilians and violent assailants, the committee ruled that the troops were not at fault.


The committee’s conclusions as well as the backing offered by international experts will now be submitted to United Nations Secretary General Ban Ki-moon and the committee he appointed to look into the flotilla incident. The UN chief will also be presented with a parallel Turkish report that was prepared with great haste; it is doubtful whether this report shows the same objectivity and unbiased professionalism characterizing the Turkel Committee report.


In any case, the committee’s conclusions will reinforce the positions of attorney Yosef Ciechanover, who is representing Israel at the UN committee.


Severe flaws

The committee’s conclusions will also assist the Obama Administration and the representatives of the permanent UN Security Council members in rejecting Turkey’s demand for an Israeli apology and compensation to the families of the nine people killed in the clash with Navy commandoes.


Indeed, it is a pity that Israel rushed about a month ago to offer the Turkish government a compromise in respect to Ankara’s demand for an apology and compensation.


The Israeli compromise initiative, which was met by a stubborn, uncompromising Turkish position, weakens to a small extent the validity of the unequivocal conclusions presented by the Turkel Committee to a small extent.


The Committee will be referring to the decision-making processes among Israel’s political and military leadership only in the second part of its report. We already know that the Committee discovered severe flaws in the intelligence preparations for the operation, and in the lenient attitude of senior political and military officials to the flotilla threat.





פרסום ראשון: 01.24.11, 18:01
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