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The impact of the Gaza blockade

Israel has come under intense international criticism for raiding a Gaza-bound aid flotilla this week, leaving nine activists dead. Journalists and eyewitnesses have accused Israeli commandos of firing on the ships before boarding. In response, the Israeli Navy has posted dozens of videos claiming to show that the activists themselves were the ones who instigated the violence.

Organizers of the Free Gaza movement, meanwhile, have promised to send another boat to challenge the Israeli Navy. And Turkey, long one of Israel’s few Muslim allies, has threatened to break off diplomatic ties, roiling the region.

The conflict may never be fully resolved, and more flotillas may well be on their way. But there is an important element to the debate that most observers have neglected: the blockade itself.  Need to Know takes an in-depth look at the history of Israel’s blockade of Gaza and its impact on the population there.

Read Need to Know’s previous coverage of the raid and its aftermath:



  • larry barnett

    as every one has seen a truck and trailer travel thur the streets,
    they carry around 20 tons of produce,food supplys,ect…
    now thats only one truck!!
    if there was only one truck that come to your town once a week for every one to get supplys from
    you wouldn’t be happy,for there is trucks as many as 100 every day that delivers to your town
    as on TV they explain that they are making sure that the people is being looked after!
    we the world is not in to seeing people depribed of the nessaties that to care for our families,
    as you have seen on TV there is other people out there that has hope in caring for others.
    i don’t see a problem with assureing the safety of their citizens,But to with hold a strougling
    life as they have there in both places, either should NOT have the right to hold up manatairyen aid
    to help life in these crices,they should know that there is family there thats just wants to care for their
    family and freinds and not to fight ,or fight any more,So stand up and be joyful that other countys
    are risking their selfs to help!! thanks larry barnett 6-6-2010

  • debby green

    Reason (for those who value truth) requires that we look at the whole picture–it has always been sad that in war people, even innocent people, are hurt.
    1.Those that choose a hard political position, such as the two sides at war over the Gaza land and those that give either side aid, can expect trouble. For Israel to use a blockade, keeping out supplies instead of using violence, to try to settle this dispute (and many feel Israel has a right to the land) shows a lot of restraint and respect for life.
    2. Read what is known about it now and look at the videos of the actual attack on the aid ship. Those yelling the loudest want us to believe this was just an innocent, peaceful group of common citizens bringing humanitarian aid–so why was there a terrorist-linked group of armed men also on the ship? This was an attempt to bring aid and reinforcement to “the enemy” in a war where “the other side” claims Israel has no right to exist at all and that they’ll never stop their war-tactics until they wipe Israel from existence–how smart would it be for Israel to allow that? Beyond the usual wrongs and tragedies of all wars, where is the moral high-ground in a war when genocide is the stated goal?

  • Nancy Kay

    I’d like to respond to the point about the blockade depriving critical aid to a deprived people; Both Egypt and Israel offered to dock the flotilla in order to inspect the ships (as is done in every modern country). This offer was flatly rejected. What was on board besides a token amount of aid? Guns, explosive devices, etc. What kind of humanitarian organization sends bombs? The participants of the flotilla had decided in advance they would use violence to their detrements as demonstrated by the fact they all made their wills just prior to the flotilla escalation. There are many people in the world who don’t want Israel to exist. They say, “get out” or as Helen Thomas was recently quoted as saying, “go back to Poland and Germany.” If you want to talk about who was there first, compare how long the religions of this region have existed. What has Israel done to the world? Lets see… Life-saving medicine, ground-breaking scientific invention, etc. If the terror groups in Palastine and the rest of the world would stop lobbing bombs and related violence at Israel, there would be no blockade. Imagine that. Peace

  • Daniel_mulcahy4

    The powers that be in both countries care little of their people and more for their pride. What would God do,say,think of these actions of the Middle East………..Shame on all of you, the chosen people my A**