Fact: Upon learning of the intentions of the Gaza flotilla, the Israeli government asked the organizers to deliver their humanitarian aid first to an Israeli port where it would be inspected (for weapons) before being forwarded to Gaza. The organizers refused. "There are two possible happy endings" a Muslim activist on board explained, "either we will reach Gaza or we will achieve martyrdom."
Fact: The flotilla ignored multiple instructions from Israeli navy ships to change course and follow them to the Israeli port of Ashdod.
Fact: On board one of the ships, according to Al-Jazeera, the "humanitarian" Palestinians sang "Khaybar, Khaybar, oh Jews, the army of Muhammad will return" -- a reference to the 628 massacre of Jews in Arabia at the hands of Muhammad.
Fact: The flotilla's participants included the IHH, a "humanitarian relief fund" based in Turkey that has close ties to Hamas and to global jihadi groups in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Chechnya and elsewhere, and which has also organized relief to anti-U.S. Islamic radicals in Fallujah, Iraq. A French intelligence report suggests that IHH has provided documents to terrorists, permitting them to pose as relief workers. Among the other cheerleaders -- former British MP and Saddam Hussein pal George Galloway, all- purpose America and Israel hater Noam Chomsky, and John Ging, head of UNRWA, the U.N.'s agency for Palestinian support.
Fact: When the family of Gilad Shalit, the Israeli soldier who was kidnapped during a cross border raid by Hamas in 2006, offered to support the flotilla if they would agree to ask Hamas to permit international agencies to visit their son, they were rebuffed.
Fact: When Israeli commandos rappelled down ropes to the deck of the Mavi Marmara, they were assaulted and beaten with metal poles and baseball bats by the Palestinians on board. (It's available on theisraelproject.org).
Some commentators sympathetic to Israel complain that the Israelis were late getting their explanation of events to the press. That's probably true, but almost irrelevant. There is a jerking of knees around the world whenever and wherever Israel is forced to defend herself. This eagerness to repeat the Palestinian version of events, to assume the very worst about Israel, and to ignore the history of blatant and outrageous lies by Israel's enemies -- amounts to joining them.