Statement of Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney on the Gaza Flotilla

Jun 2, 2010
Press Release

WASHINGTON, DC – Congresswoman Carolyn B. Maloney (D-NY) released the following statement:

"I truly sympathize with the families of those who were killed or injured on the Mavi Marmara, but the fault lies with those who incited violence, not with those who defended Israel’s borders. Israel had offered to have the flotilla land at Ashdod and have the humanitarian aid trucked to Gaza after being searched. The organizers rejected the offer. The family of Gilad Shalit asked the flotilla to carry a letter to their son who has been kept hostage in the Gaza Strip. The organizers rejected the request. The Gaza flotilla was clearly intended to generate international pressure to force Israel to relax its blockade and forego inspections of cargo destined for the Gaza Strip. But, all too often ‘humanitarian’ efforts have given cover to weapons running and terrorism.

"Videos of the incident support the fact that many of the activists on Mavi Marmara had planned a violent attack. The footage reveals that the Mavi Marmara carried dozens of wooden and metal batons, knives (and there is footage of one knife drenched in blood), flame throwers, infrared night vision goggles, slingshots and flares. These are strange implements for a non-violent expedition. The video shows Israeli soldiers being attacked with sticks, chairs, knives and other implements. One soldier is thrown head first over the side of the deck. The people who attacked the soldiers were anything but non-violent, and they clearly intended to cause grievous bodily harm to the soldiers they were attacking.

"I do not believe the flotilla was serving the cause of peace. Rather than planning ways to embarrass Israel and provide support to a terrorist regime, I would hope peace activists would encourage all sides to come to the bargaining table to seek a lasting peace."