Gaza Freedom Flotilla : Participants Speak Out

Gaza Freedom Flotilla participants Ann Wright and Joe Meadors spoke in Austin about their experiences. Photo by Alice Embree / The Rag Blog.

Col. Ann Wright and Joe Meadors:
What really happened on the Freedom Flotilla

By Alice Embree / The Rag Blog / July 13, 2010

Col. Ann Wright is Thorne Dreyer’s guest on Rag Radio, Tuesday, July 13, 2-3 p.m. (CST) on KOOP 91.7 FM in Austin. They discuss her history in the military and as a diplomat, why she resigned from the State Department, her involvement in the peace movement, and what happened on the Gaza Freedom Flotilla.

For those outside the listening area, go here to stream the show. To listen to this show on the Rag Radio archives after the broadcast, go here. To listen to earlier shows, go to the Rag Radio archives.

AUSTIN — Two participants in the Gaza Freedom Flotilla, Col. Ann Wright and Joe Meadors, spoke to an Austin audience July 11 as part of a statewide speaking tour. They were part of a six ship flotilla attempting to break the Israeli blockade of Gaza with a delivery of humanitarian supplies. On May 31, Israeli special forces boarded the largest ship, the MV Mavi Marmara, shooting nine passengers to death and injuring more than 40. One U.S. citizen was among the dead.

Wright and Meadors had been sailing on smaller ships in the flotilla. They described being surrounded by Zodiac boats at 4:30 in the morning, 70 miles off coast in international waters. Percussion bombs were fired on their ships, breaking windows, before Israeli special forces boarded and detained those on board. Personal items — cameras, laptops and cell phones — were confiscated and passengers were held on board before being removed and detained in Israeli jails. All the cargo was seized.

Ann Wright, a retired Army Colonel and career diplomat, is best known for resigning from her State Department position in protest at the onset of the Iraq War. Since her resignation she has been active in the peace and social justice movements. Wright spoke with Joe Meadors, a survivor of the 1967 Israeli attack on the USS Liberty. The Liberty was a Naval electronic intelligence-gathering ship deployed near Israel.

Meadors, who was a Navy signalman, described the attack by Israeli planes and torpedo boats that left 34 dead and two thirds of the remaining crew injured. Naval investigations of the attack were scuttled and Israel was never held accountable for the deaths. Meadors, a Corpus Christi resident, said “I knew what Israel could do.”

The Gaza Freedom Flotilla included more than 600 participants from 37 countries. The deadly attack prompted an international outcry and has increased pressure on Israel to lift the blockade which confines 1.5 million people in a strip of land about five miles wide and 25 miles long. This densely populated area was devastated by the Israeli bombing attacks launched in December 2008.

The Rag Blog

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3 Responses to Gaza Freedom Flotilla : Participants Speak Out

  1. Anonymous says:

    Odd Frankenstein's monster, Israel. Didn't suck up elecrticity while lying on the table. It sucked money from a red,white and blue teat. Now it is off the table.The villagers with the torches are running for THEIR lives.

  2. The situation is hopeless. Israel is well on the way to carving up the West Bank into small bantostans, or what they have called “chicken.” The next step will be to move some Arab Israelis out to the stans.

    I’m not too hard on Obama here. We are like Turkey, there is a state within a state or what is called the “deep state.” It is comprised of some elements of the military, the biggest banks, the Israeli infrastructure here, and the intelligence community, whose fronts and proprietaries like Wakenhut overlap with industry. Add to that corrupt judges, like those who seal 9/11 records and rule against people like Don Siegelman because he once interfereed with the drug trade.

    Obama has to let these folks have their way and try to work around the edges to do a little for the masses.

  3. Anonymous says:

    I saw Col. Wright on Democracy Now right after the Flotilla slaughter. I was amazed at the courage and knowledge of this woman, and wondered why NO corporate zionist network has put her on prime time? What about US Ambassdor Peck on the same voyage, his voice is missing. Yet the corporate media played the “faked flotilla tapes again and again” with any newspaper of record interviewing anyone on the ships or doing an investigation by their own reporters.It has now been proven the faked Israelie tapes showing daylight (when the attack occured at night, plus the time dated material (2006) the Israelies put out was never challenged by corporate media! Mussolini said, “when the media, government and corporations work in collusion that is fascism”. Someone please tell me if we still have consitutional law, do we really abide by international law, do we have a Congress with a Concience? Do we have a President who has surrounded himself with zionists leftovers from the Clintonista regime, or the Bush/Cheney carryovers who have all proven to be less than truthful and in fact have been treasonous to the american people. How can we have 34 sailors die on a US ship, attacked in broad daylight by the zionists and nothing was reported. Why were our OWN sailors made to take secret oaths never to reveal Israel attacked a US ship and killed 34 and wounded over 100? Does Israel run the US? According to Bibi YES, they own America. Want to know whats wrong with our country? How can a group who make up 2% of the total population consume all the newspapers, tv anchors, radio announcers, and journalists? How did this country get to be the United States of Israel?

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