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Fri Apr 13, 2012, 05:00 PM

Israel expected to block 'flytilla' of international Palestinian sympathisers

Israel has forced low-cost airline Jet2.com to cancel the tickets of three women from Manchester intending to travel to Bethlehem via Tel Aviv this weekend for a gathering of pro-Palestinian activists.

Jet2.com informed the women by email that the airline would refuse to carry them and no refund would be paid. The move follows pressure on airlines from Israel to ban known activists.

One of the women, retired nurse Norma Turner, said Jet2.com had caved in to pressure. "It never crossed my mind that Israel could stop people with British passports leaving British airports," she told the Guardian.

Israel has promised to deny entry to hundreds of activists due to arrive at Tel Aviv airport on Sunday en route to the West Bank for a week of educational and cultural activities.

full: http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/apr/13/palestinian-territories-israel

20 replies, 2365 views

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Reply Israel expected to block 'flytilla' of international Palestinian sympathisers (Original post)
alp227 Apr 2012 OP
frylock Apr 2012 #1
Jefferson23 Apr 2012 #2
shira Apr 2012 #3
oberliner Apr 2012 #4
Scurrilous Apr 2012 #5
Scurrilous Apr 2012 #6
Jefferson23 Apr 2012 #7
oberliner Apr 2012 #9
Jefferson23 Apr 2012 #10
azurnoir Apr 2012 #11
oberliner Apr 2012 #13
azurnoir Apr 2012 #15
oberliner Apr 2012 #8
Jefferson23 Apr 2012 #12
jimmie Apr 2012 #14
azurnoir Apr 2012 #18
oberliner Apr 2012 #19
pelsar Apr 2012 #20
azurnoir Apr 2012 #16
oberliner Apr 2012 #17

Response to alp227 (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 05:22 PM

1. and NO refund?! fuck that shit.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 05:29 PM

2. Israeli government...Scaredy cats. n/t

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 06:36 PM

3. German Luftansa, British Jet2.com cancel tickets to Israel

http://www.ynetnews.com/articles/0,7340,L-4215580,00.html
http://www.guardian.co.uk/world/2012/apr/13/palestinian-territories-israel?newsfeed=true

Well, duh.

The airlines don't want to risk losing money having to fly these sanctimonious rightwing, leftwing, and neo-nazi bigots immediately back home as soon as Israeli airport authorities identify who they are.

What's funny is that these losers are breaking ranks with BDS, paying Israeli airline taxes.

I wonder if these idiots realize they look ridiculous going to Tel Aviv rather than Damascus, Syria, considering what's going on there.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 07:03 PM

4. "People with British passports leaving British airports"

What is the implication of that statement?

What is special about passports and airports that are British as opposed to from a different country?

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Response to alp227 (Original post)


Response to alp227 (Original post)

Fri Apr 13, 2012, 07:10 PM

6. Israel mobilizes special forces to deport ‘flytilla’ activists

<snip>

"This Sunday, the Airflotilla2, or "flytilla," organizers expect around 1,500 international activists to fly into Ben-Gurion airport in order to draw attention to Israel’s abuses to the Palestinian people. As the third action of this kind approaches, Haaretz reports Israeli authorities are planning to deploy "hundreds of police and special forces," to immediately deport the activists. Organizers of the Airfoltilla2 maintain they will continue with the demonstration and subsequent "Welcome to Palestine," week-long program of activities in the West Bank. "They have the right to enter Palestine. It's not up to Israel to forbid anybody from coming into Palestine," said Abdelfattah Abusrour , a Palestinian fly-in coordinator. During their visit to the West Bank, activists will meet with Palestinian organizers in Bethlehem, Jerusalem, Hebron and Ramallah.

The AirFlofilla2 is an expensive direct action. Activists from around the world will board planes headed for Tel Aviv and when they arrive, they intend to inform airport security of their plans to enter the West Bank. Generally, announcing intent to enter the occupied Palestinian territories is grounds for deportation, though not an official Israeli policy. After last year's fytilla, when two activists from Australia and New Zealand were denied entry they petitioned the order. However, the Israeli court did not accept the case, and 24-hour visas were then issued for the two activists. That case, and this year's flytilla raises the legal question, can Israel deport travels for visiting the West Bank?

Anyone who has visited the occupied Palestinian territories understands the only way in is through an Israeli controlled boarder. And travelers know, divulging to the authorities plans to enter the West Bank or Gaza, even when obvious is risky, and often will lead to a denial of entry. Last summer, around 130 internationals who flew into Tel Aviv were imprisoned, and Israeli officials also promptly deported 36 activists. An additional 200 were expected to fly-in, however, they were barred from boarding flights to Israel in their home countries. The Airflotilla2 activists are challenging this de facto embargo placed upon the Palestinian territories."



Screen shot from the ligue defense juive (Jewish Defense League). Trans. from French: "The Jewish Defense League is organizing a welcome party for the anti-Semitic thugs who wish to travel to Israel mid-April. People wanting to participate in this warm welcome are requested to contact us."

http://mondoweiss.net/2012/04/israel-mobilizes-special-forces-to-deport-flytilla-activists.html

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Response to Scurrilous (Reply #6)

Sat Apr 14, 2012, 09:18 AM

7. Welcome to Palestine: 'Even prisoners are allowed visits'

Even Jews can be barred by Israel from travelling to Bethlehem - for the thought crime of supporting Palestinian rights.
Last Modified: 14 Apr 2012 10:56

Washington, DC - What difference will it make to the lives of Palestinians in the West Bank when the world meets their demands for freedom and self-determination?

One difference it will make: like other peoples of the world, the Palestinians will get to decide who they can invite to visit them.

Right now, if you, as a citizen of the United States, Canada, or Europe, decide that you want to visit Bethlehem, a Palestinian city in the West Bank - the same Bethlehem that Christians believe to be the birthplace of Jesus - you have two ways to begin your journey. You can fly to Israel, and cross the 1967 border to the West Bank. Or you can fly to Jordan, and cross to the West Bank over one of the bridges. But whichever way you go, you cannot pass to Bethlehem without the permission of the Netanyahu government, which controls all paths you can take to Bethlehem.

If you are a Likud supporter, flying into the Israeli airport should present no problem. But if you are a supporter of Palestinian rights, the Netanyahu government could stop you from going to Bethlehem on purely political grounds - even if you have never committed any crime and have no intention of ever committing one, even if you have never attended a Palestinian protest in the West Bank and have no intention of attending one. You could be barred by the Netanyahu government from going to Bethlehem simply for the thought crime of supporting Palestinian human rights.

Indeed, even Jews from the US can be barred by the Netanyahu government from travelling to Bethlehem for the thought crime of supporting Palestinian rights.


Crowds flock to Bethlehem for Christmas

Given the economic, political and diplomatic support given to the Netanyahu government by North America and Europe, this is a spectacular state of affairs. You might think that governments and media in North America and Europe would express forceful concern if their citizens' right to travel were obstructed by a government they were doing so much to support.

Palestinian campaign

This weekend, this question will be put to the test by the "Welcome to Palestine" campaign.

The Associated Press reports:

Activists with the "Welcome to Palestine" campaign are set to land in Israel on dozens of flights Sunday. They say they wish to travel to nearby Bethlehem in the West Bank to participate in a week of activities, like the dedication of a school and homestays with Palestinian families.

Mazin Qumsiyeh, a Palestinian campaign organiser, said the activists were coming to exercise their right to visit the Palestinian territories.

"The object is not to fly in to make a protest at the airport. The object is for foreigners to visit us," Qumsiyeh said. "Even prisoners are allowed visits."

The Netanyahu government says that it will "round up activists who land in the country and deport them", which is again a spectacular fact. Apparently, you can be deported by the Netanyahu government not because of what you do, but because of who you are. If you are an "activist", then Palestinians welcome you to Bethlehem, but you may not be able to get there, because the Netanyahu government may deport you for being such an "activist".

So far, there has been scant press coverage in the US of "Welcome to Palestine", and this again is a spectacular fact. But the good news is that, thanks to the wonders of the internet, we don't need to wait on the New York Times and the Washington Post. We can follow and spread the news on Welcome to Palestine on Twitter using the hashtag #fly2palestine.

Robert Naiman is Policy Director at Just Foreign Policy.

The views expressed in this article are the author's own and do not necessarily reflect Al Jazeera's editorial policy.

http://www.aljazeera.com/indepth/opinion/2012/04/201241484657679358.html

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #7)

Sat Apr 14, 2012, 09:49 AM

9. "the thought crime of supporting Palestinian rights"

It's preposterous articles like this that give the movement a bad name.

Lots and lots of people who travel to and from Israel (and indeed who call Israel their home) support Palestinian rights.

This piece says the trip is about attending "a week of activities, like the dedication of a school and homestays with Palestinian families."

That's not what the organizers say the purpose of the direct action is, however.

Being dishonest isn't really going to help anyone's cause.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #9)

Sat Apr 14, 2012, 09:56 AM

10. Concrete, literal comprehension can leave such an impression for some.

I believe most will get the meaning just fine...no dishonesty involved.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #9)

Sat Apr 14, 2012, 01:40 PM

11. dishonest?

All visitors to the West Bank must first pass Israeli border control and many arriving in Tel Aviv's Ben Gurion airport do not tell Israeli security if they will be visiting Palestinian areas as this leads to interrogation and often deportation.

But the "Welcome to Palestine" campaign has asked its guests to be open about their plans to visit the West Bank.

Coordinator Abdul-Fatah Abu Srour told reporters in Bethlehem the participants are declaring their right to say they are coming to Palestine and "we are not hiding it, we are not going to lie about it."

Organizer Mazim Qumsiyeh added: "We cannot understand why Israel wants people to lie about why they are coming."

http://www.maannews.net/eng/ViewDetails.aspx?ID=475365

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Response to azurnoir (Reply #11)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 12:42 PM

13. Yes

There is obviously more to this trip than "a week of educational and cultural activities" as your post illustrates.

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Response to oberliner (Reply #13)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 02:58 PM

15. well I'm sure there was some nefarious activities planned

like these guys on bicycles, but not to worry IDF knows how to deal with them too

http://972mag.com/watch-idf-lt-col-rams-rifle-in-face-of-activist/41981/

however Israel's reaction to the flytilla demonstrated exactly what one of the points of the flytilla was, well done Israel

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Response to Scurrilous (Reply #6)

Sat Apr 14, 2012, 09:47 AM

8. "en route to the West Bank for a week of educational and cultural activities"

From your post, it doesn't sound like they were "en route to the West Bank for a week of educational and cultural activities" as the article in the OP states.

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 12:35 PM

12. Pro-Palestinian activists detained in Israel

More than 40 Welcome to Palestine activists taking part in "fly-in" blocked entry at Tel Aviv's international airport.

Last Modified: 15 Apr 2012 16:08

More than 40 pro-Palestinian activists have detained by Israeli authorities at Tel Aviv's international airport for taking part in an attempted "fly-in".

The Welcome to Palestine campaign, now in its third consecutive year, aims to gather activists from more than 15 countries in Israel from April 15 to 21 to "challenge the Israeli siege of the occupied territories", it says on its website.

Micky Rosenfeld, an Israeli police spokesman, said on Sunday that 41 people had been refused entry at Ben Gurion airport by early afternoon and would be deported. Four Israeli supporters, two holding "Welcome to Palestine" signs, were also arrested as they waited to greet the arrivals.

Rosenfeld told Al Jazeera, "We know those activists have intentions of arriving here, intentions of causing disturbances both inside the terminal ... to stop the the Isreali aircrafts from coming in."

Al Jazeera's Cal Perry in Tel Aviv said that 60 per cent of the activists had been stopped at their point of origin.

Earlier on Sunday, hundreds of pro-Palestinian activists were prevented by authorities across Europe from boarding flights bound for Tel Aviv.

The Swiss police prevented about 100 pro-Palestinian activists from flying to Ben Gurion airport, according to the Welcome to Palestine campaign website.

Anas Mohammed, the campaign's spokesman, said on Sunday: "The information we have obtained from activists is that there is a high presence of police there and that the police are trying to prevent them from boarding."

"Besides that there has been the confiscation of a passport of one of the activists."

The Swiss and French activists had bought their tickets in advance and were due to fly on a 6:30am local time (04:30 GMT) flight to Tel Aviv, Mohammed said.

"They are going to visit Palestinians who are under occupation, they are going to visit the West Bank."

British airline Jet2.com and French carrier Air France said on Saturday they were cancelling seats on flights to Tel Aviv.

Israel deploys police

Israeli police said on Sunday that hundreds of officers had been deployed at Israel's main airport to detain activists flying in.

An interior ministry spokeswoman said the immigration authority had on Wednesday given airlines the names of about 1,200 activists whose entrance to Israel would be barred.

in full: http://www.aljazeera.com/news/middleeast/2012/04/201241545637130915.html

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Response to Jefferson23 (Reply #12)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 01:32 PM

14. Well , look at it this way...

 

they got an EDUCATION that Israel doesn't want them in their country and also got a CULTURAL lesson that israel isn't going to be door mat to people who want it's destruction.

I'd say they got what they wanted.

And on the bright side, maybe they got an extra pack of those delicious Biscoff cookies on their return trip home.

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Response to jimmie (Reply #14)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 04:43 PM

18. looking @it closer Israel has done a wonderful job at making one of flytilla's points

Asked for her personal thoughts about the activists’ intention to visit Bethlehem, Tehilla Michel—a 54-year old French-Israeli social worker who lives in Jerusalem—remarked, “I don’t have a problem with it.”

Michel added, however, that she thinks that Israel has a right to decide who can enter the country. “Every country does this.”

When this writer pointed out that the activists aren’t trying to enter Israel, that they’re trying to reach Bethlehem, Michel countered that they needed to enter Israel to do so, not realizing, perhaps, that the action was meant to call attention to exactly that–that Israel ultimately controls even Area A of the West Bank.


http://972mag.com/who-are-the-welcome-to-palestine-activists/42055/

more @ link the article title is "Who are the ‘Welcome to Palestine’ activists?"

destruction of Israel ? it always amazes me that protest of Israel's occupation of the West Bank is equated with the destruction of Israel with so much frequency by Israel's supporters, it says something about the position on so called peace and 2 states even if inadvertently

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Response to azurnoir (Reply #18)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 05:03 PM

19. At least from 972mag's perspective

And they aren't the only ones.

Wonder what the Israeli press is saying in Hebrew?

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Response to oberliner (Reply #19)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 05:59 PM

20. the hebrew press...not a whole lot

a little bit of background, a little bit that they were held in detention.....not much controversy since its just one more variation of a publicity stunt.....of the "useful idiote" syndrome

though the Netenyahus letter was found to be very amusing with a bit to truth in it

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Response to alp227 (Original post)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 03:09 PM

16. The leftists are coming! The leftists are coming!

Listen my children, and you shall hear
Of the midnight ride of Bibi Revere,
On the fifteenth of April, 2012
(but meanwhile don’t take your hand off your helve)
Who remembers that famous day and year.

He said to his friend, “If the leftists march
By land or air from Ben Gurion airport
Put a policeman aloft in the arrival hall arch
of Terminal 3 as an attempt to abort,
One if by land, and hundreds if by air
And I in my office will continue to scare.

the rest at link

http://972mag.com/the-leftists-are-coming-the-leftists-are-coming/41868/

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Response to azurnoir (Reply #16)

Sun Apr 15, 2012, 03:50 PM

17. The propaganda is never-ending

You should see this spoofs/satires on the other side.

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