This was the flavor of some of the folks who, with the blessing of Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan, set sail for Gaza aboard the “peace activist” flotilla flagship, the Mavi Marmara. Israel offered to offload the “humanitarian supplies” and deliver them overland. That offer was refused. When Israeli commandos tried to peacefully board the ship (as they did successfully with the rest of the flotilla), dozens of “peace activists” — wielding knives and metal rods — mobbed and attacked them, beating and stabbing. The Israelis fought back in self-defense. That was how those nine Turks died.
You know the rest of this script. Turkey’s Prime Minister Erdogan denounced Israel and demanded punishment for Israel. The United Nations — ever ready to assist in such endeavors — convened an inquiry, which produced a report flagrantly biased against Israel (don’t take my word for it — the Obama administration protested to the UN Human Rights Council that “we are concerned by the report’s unbalanced language, tone and conclusions”). Threats of further slanted inquiry and international legal action against Israel have continued. This has become an industry. For Israel to pay the families of its attackers is not a way to buy better ties with Turkey. It’s a way to invite more attacks. But the larger question by now is not how Israel should handle this. What’s most disturbing is that the free world stands by and accepts it as business as usual that Turkey’s Erdogan — having wished godspeed to a terror-linked group embarked for terror-controlled Gaza — demands apologies from the real victims.