Why I am not cut out to be Prime Minister of Israel

13 Dec

by Rafi Karp

Almost six months ago to the day, I wrote a note on Facebook as to how I thought Benjamin Netanyahu should have responded to the infamous flotilla incident. Anyway, for those of you who did not read that article, here is a list of the five main points which, in that speech which I wrote free of charge for Mr. Netanyahu, I suggested he declare with verve and passion in response to the incident and, specifically, in response to Turkey’s objections:

1. Israel holds the organizers of the flotilla as the sole entity responsible for the deaths aboard the Mavi Marmara.
2. Israel has no intention of removing the blockade on Gaza or even convening to discuss its potential removal, until it is wholly convinced Israel’s security will not be compromised as a result of its removal.
3. Israel is recalling the Israeli ambassador to Turkey and requesting the Turkish ambassador to Israel return to Turkey until Prime Minister Erdogan officially condemns the actions of the Mavi Marmara, admits Israel’s blockade is a necessary precaution for Israel’s security and recognizes that the Israeli navy acted in self-defense.
4. The Turkish government must sever all ties with IHH, the terror organization responsible for the incident, as a condition for full re-establishment of diplomatic relations.
5. Israel will not make any probes or internal investigations into the incident. Nor will Israel cooperate with external inquiries since it is clear that Israel did everything possible to diffuse the situation without resorting to violence and acted, from the start of the incident through to its end, purely in self-defense.

Well, that’s all well and good. This is what in reality has happened since I wrote that article six months ago:

1. Rumors surfaced last week claiming that during negotiations in Geneva, Israel offered financial compensation to the families of those killed on the Mavi Marmara. If this is true, it unquestionably implicates Israel as being at least partially responsible for the deaths.
2. The Israeli government convened on the issue of removing the blockade and in October, decided to loosen the terms of the blockade.
3. Instead of Israel recalling its ambassador from Turkey, Gaby Levy remains in Ankara. Conversely, immediately after the incident, Turkey recalled its own ambassador to Israel, Oguz Celikkol, who is yet to return to his post. Erdogan has not condemned the actions of the violent passengers aboard the Mavi Marmara, maintains that Israel should remove the Gaza blockade in its entirety and has refused to admit that Israeli commandos acted purely in self-defense. Yet, the Israeli government is actively pursuing re-establishment of full diplomatic co-operation, as proven by the negotiations that recently took place in Geneva.
4. Whilst Erdogan has never officially admitted it, overwhelming evidence that his AK Party maintains close ties with IHH exists. This has been reported in the New York Times, as well as confirmed by information found on the laptops of a substantial number of passengers who were aboard the Mavi Marmara.
5. Israel instituted its own internal probe of the flotilla incident (The Turkel Committee) and in August, agreed to co-operate with the UNHRC’s own investigation.

So, there you have it. Clearly I am not cut out to be Prime Minister of Israel.

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