JFK: There’s no difference between my blockade of CUBA
and the Israeli blockade of Hamastan, and Erkki Tuomioja is a jerk
The Israeli blockade of Hamastan, regardless of whether or not the EU and the West labels them a terrorist organization, is entirely legal under international law. If not for the threat of a nuclear war breaking out during the Cuban missile crisis, the US would have been fully justified in boarding Soviet ships heading for Cuba, and in open international waters.
But that’s not what the Europeans are interested in, they would rather not discuss actual international law, no, on the contrary, they would rather vaguely refer to international law as something that the Israelis are in violation of, but never, never, show exactly where they are in violation of it.
Whether it’s failed Finnish socialist politicians like Erkki Tuomioja or pseudo Finnish scholars of international law, like Pertti Koskenniemi, being vague about international law when discussing anything about Israel in the media is paramount. Being hard core Leftists, the just two mentioned would more than likely deem JFK’s decision to blockade Cuba as “being against international law” as well, and of course, without ever pointing to anything that validates their postion, it’s illegal just because they say it is. KGS
Helsinki Principles on the law of Maritime Neutrality
5.1.2 Protection against attacks
3) Merchant ships flying the flag of a neutral State may be attacked if they are believed grounds to be carrying contraband or breaching a blockade, and after prior warning they in clearly refuse to stop, or intentionally and clearly resist visit, search, capture or diversion.
Wa-Po: Charles Karuthammer: The world is outraged at Israel’s blockade of Gaza. Turkey denounces its illegality, inhumanity, barbarity, etc. The usual U.N. suspects, Third World and European, join in. The Obama administration dithers.
But as Leslie Gelb, former president of the Council on Foreign Relations, writes, the blockade is not just perfectly rational, it is perfectly legal. Gaza under Hamas is a self-declared enemy of Israel — a declaration backed up by more than 4,000 rockets fired at Israeli civilian territory. Yet having pledged itself to unceasing belligerency, Hamas claims victimhood when Israel imposes a blockade to prevent Hamas from arming itself with still more rockets.
In World War II, with full international legality, the United States blockaded Germany and Japan. And during the October 1962 missile crisis, we blockaded (“quarantined”) Cuba. Arms-bearing Russian ships headed to Cuba turned back because the Soviets knew that the U.S. Navy would either board them or sink them. Yet Israel is accused of international criminality for doing precisely what John Kennedy did: impose a naval blockade to prevent a hostile state from acquiring lethal weaponry.
Oh, but weren’t the Gaza-bound ships on a mission of humanitarian relief? No. Otherwise they would have accepted Israel’s offer to bring their supplies to an Israeli port, be inspected for military materiel and have the rest trucked by Israel into Gaza — as every week 10,000 tons of food, medicine and other humanitarian supplies are sent by Israel to Gaza.
Why was the offer refused? Because, as organizer Greta Berlin admitted, the flotilla was not about humanitarian relief but about breaking the blockade, i.e., ending Israel’s inspection regime, which would mean unlimited shipping into Gaza and thus the unlimited arming of Hamas.
Israel has already twice intercepted ships laden with Iranian arms destined for Hezbollah and Gaza. What country would allow that?
But even more important, why did Israel even have to resort to blockade? Because, blockade is Israel’s fallback as the world systematically de-legitimizes its traditional ways of defending itself — forward and active defense.