Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)

Retired diplomat Ed Peck, USS Liberty vet Joe Meadors reach home and speak out;

Posted by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 12:51 AM
  • 30 Replies


More Gaza Flotilla Detainees Released; 

Larudee Badly Beaten But Now Headed to Greece


Retired diplomat Ed Peck, USS Liberty vet Joe Meadors reach home and speak out; 

other US detainees reportedly leaving Israel



El Cerrito, CA – Dr. Paul Larudee, a passenger on the Freedom Flotilla that was attacked by Israel before it could deliver its cargo of humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip, was badly beaten and tasered during the Memorial Day commando raid, but according to latest reports he was released from detention late Wednesday night and is now in flight to Greece.


Larudee, a resident of Richmond, CA,  participated in the international flotilla as part of a delegation from the Free Palestine Movement (FPM), a California-based non-profit. Two other members of the FPM group - Ambassador Ed Peck of Chevy Chase, MD, a retired US diplomat,  and Joe Meadors of Corpus Christi, TX, a USS Liberty veteran (hence now a survivor of two unprovoked Israeli attacks on the high seas) - have returned home safely and are now speaking out about their ordeal. As of Wednesday afternoon California time, two other members of the group - Gene St. Onge and Janet Kobren, both of Oakland, CA - have been held up for the last 12 hours at Israel's international airport near Tel  Aviv. but are expected to board a flight to Istanbul soon, before proceeding home to the US.


Gayle McLaughlin, Mayor of Richmond, said "I have worked with Paul on local housing issues in Richmond, and I know he has a track record of commitment to nonviolence in standing up against the oppression of Palestinians.  I condemn the Israeli assault on this humanitarian flotilla and join others in calling for an end to the blockade of Gaza."  


Ambassador Peck this morning described the Israeli commando raid on the Sfendoni, the Freedom Flotilla ship he and other FPM delegates were aboard: "The first thing we knew was the sound of footsteps, and my eyelids flicked open, and there they were, heavily armed. The Israeli government keeps referring to the paint guns, but the paint guns were attached to the automatic weapons and the stun grenades and the pepper spray and the tasers and everything else that these guys carry. ... And it was all over in the inside of the ship, where I was. But up on the upper deck, where some people had been sitting and sleeping, they made an effort to peacefully prevent the Israelis from taking over the wheelhouse, and we had a number of people injured in that. Nothing of a critical nature, but we had people on crutches and people with bandages and peoples with their arms in slings, and the captain had his neck in a brace." 


"I was deported for having violated Israeli law," Peck added. "I asked [the Israeli official processing his deportation] , 'What law have I violated?' He said, 'You have illegally entered Israel.' I said, 'Well, now, wait. Our ship was taken over by armed commandos. I was brought here at gunpoint against my will, and you call that illegally entering Israel?'" 


To Navy vet Joe Meadors, “There is no doubt that the Israelis were committing piracy on the high seas against the Freedom Flotilla and used deadly force against unarmed humanitarians whose only crime was defending themselves against a sea and airborne invasion by heavily armed aggressors."


"As a survivor of the June 8, 1967 Israeli attack on the USS Liberty," Meadors said, "I am fully aware of the tactics the Israelis are capable of and willing to use with impunity and without remorse.  That time they fired machine guns, cannon, rockets, napalm, and torpedoes on us, then deliberately machine-gunned life rafts we had dropped over the side in anticipation of abandoning ship. And the only response from the American government was to impose a gag order on the crew of the USS Liberty."


"This time, too," Meadors continued, "the Israelis have shown no remorse, and I fear that the US government is again granting them impunity."


As to the other FPM detainees, St. Onge suffered a gash on his head when kicked by an Israeli soldier as he tried to protect a fellow passenger whom the commandos were beating on the deck of the Sfendoni, he told his wife Jan St. Onge. Kobren was allowed to make a brief phone call to the US from a women's prison unit in Beersheba, Israel, yesterday and reported that she is good health, but all the prisoners' belongings had been taken from them.


Larudee, 64, is a longtime activist in the struggle for justice for Palestine: he and Kobren co-founded the FPM in 2009, and he previously co-founded the Free Gaza Movement, the organization that first broke the Israeli blockade of Gaza from the sea in 2008, and the International Solidarity Movement, a group that has sent hundred of Americans and other internationals to support non-violent Palestinian resistance to the Israeli occupation. Paul holds a Ph.D. in linguistics and makes his living as a piano tuner.


At least seven other US citizens took part in the Freedom Flotilla under the auspices of other organizations. One, Huwaida Arraf, chair of the Free Gaza Movement, was released Tuesday. The FPM has no confirmed information about the status of the other six: Iara Lee, a filmmaker from San Francisco; Kathy Sheetz, a retired nurse from Richmond, CA, and Woods Hole, MA; Ann Wright, a retired U.S. Army Colonel and a U.S. diplomat until she resigned in opposition to the Iraq war; David Schermerhorn, a film producer from Deer Harbor, WA; Fatima Mohammadi, a longtime activist from Chicago; and Khalid Turaani, who was founder and executive director of the former American Muslims for Jerusalem and now lives in Dubai.


For more information about the Free Palestine Movement, see  www.freepalestinemo vement.org

For information on other groups that played major roles in the Freedom Flotilla, see savegaza.eu/ eng/ (the European Campaign to End the Siege of Gaza), www.freegaza. org/ (the Free Gaza Movement), and www.ihh.org. tr/filistin/ en/ (The Foundation For Human Rights And Freedoms And Humanitarian Relief of Turkey - IHH).

by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 12:51 AM
Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Replies (1-10):
Della529
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 1:51 AM

BUMP!

tericared
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 1:52 AM

BUMP!

Will come back to this tomorrow......

Goodwoman614
by Satan on Jun. 3, 2010 at 2:59 AM

Yes, me three.  See you tomorrow.

Btw, though, I caught the interview with Mr. Peck on Democracy Now, today.  He recounted pretty much what is in the OP, as well as much more.  Laura Flanders had an interview with Norman Finkelstein and on the phone, a woman who was there on the boat.

muslimah
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 11:05 AM

I think with the embarrassment and world criticism that israel has experienced through this they thought they would hold a few press conferences and throw out there some bull shit articles and video to try to justify their acts of piracy and terrorism in hopes that the whole thing would just be blown over and shoved under the rug.

But now that the survivors are being released they are speaking out and they are not going to stop speaking out and they are going to keep it at the surface. Western news/media sources will most likely try to focus the attention on other things in the headlines like immigration, the oil spill, the upcoming elections in hopes of pushing this aside from the headlines but it is far from over and whether or not it is reported by everyone or anyone in the western media they will not be just going home to recuperate quietly.

israel continued to go about the whole thing wrong when they released the survivors in order to try not to add to the diplomatic crisis they have cause themselves. Since they are known for never doing the right thing anyways they should have just stuck with what is in their best interest like always whether right or wrong and kept the survivors detained preventing them from speaking out on what really happened to them.

 

They could have just stuck with "they have terrorist ties" and made further detention justified but since that too would have been proven not to be the case they went ahead and released those who israel claims to be "tied to terrorism" which I think speaks for it's self.

tericared
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 4:36 PM

 Double talk...something the zionist government of Israel is very good at...

'You have illegally entered Israel.' I said, 'Well, now, wait. Our ship was taken over by armed commandos. I was brought here at gunpoint against my will, and you call that illegally entering Israel?'" 


 

muslimah
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 4:41 PM


Quoting tericared:

 Double talk...something the zionist government of Israel is very good at...

'You have illegally entered Israel.' I said, 'Well, now, wait. Our ship was taken over by armed commandos. I was brought here at gunpoint against my will, and you call that illegally entering Israel?'" 


 

Unbelievable but so typical and predicable.

calilove12
by Member on Jun. 3, 2010 at 6:03 PM


Quoting muslimah:

 

Quoting tericared:

 Double talk...something the zionist government of Israel is very good at...

'You have illegally entered Israel.' I said, 'Well, now, wait. Our ship was taken over by armed commandos. I was brought here at gunpoint against my will, and you call that illegally entering Israel?'" 


 

Unbelievable but so typical and predicable.


not surprised one bit.. this is way the way of these zionist Jews... they will murder anyone including US citizens but the US govt. will bow down to them... if they were Muslims or anyone else who did this US would be blasting them...   Yet we claim to be the greatest nation... more like a nation brainwashed and b**** of israel

tericared
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 6:28 PM

 

Quoting calilove12:

 

Quoting muslimah:

 

Quoting tericared:

 Double talk...something the zionist government of Israel is very good at...

'You have illegally entered Israel.' I said, 'Well, now, wait. Our ship was taken over by armed commandos. I was brought here at gunpoint against my will, and you call that illegally entering Israel?'" 


 

Unbelievable but so typical and predicable.


not surprised one bit.. this is way the way of these zionist Jews... they will murder anyone including US citizens but the US govt. will bow down to them... if they were Muslims or anyone else who did this US would be blasting them...   Yet we claim to be the greatest nation... more like a nation brainwashed and b**** of israel

 You are right if this had been reversed and Muslims attack a ship in International waters, there would be hell to pay.....No matter who you think is right when it comes to Palestine, this is the truth...

muslimah
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 6:53 PM


Quoting tericared:

 

Quoting calilove12:

 

Quoting muslimah:

 

Quoting tericared:

 Double talk...something the zionist government of Israel is very good at...

'You have illegally entered Israel.' I said, 'Well, now, wait. Our ship was taken over by armed commandos. I was brought here at gunpoint against my will, and you call that illegally entering Israel?'" 


 

Unbelievable but so typical and predicable.


not surprised one bit.. this is way the way of these zionist Jews... they will murder anyone including US citizens but the US govt. will bow down to them... if they were Muslims or anyone else who did this US would be blasting them...   Yet we claim to be the greatest nation... more like a nation brainwashed and b**** of israel

 You are right if this had been reversed and Muslims attack a ship in International waters, there would be hell to pay.....No matter who you think is right when it comes to Palestine, this is the truth...

I more than any body hate to see the discrimination card played and am as far from being politically correct as one can be but I am left with no choice but to agree on this.

 

tericared
by on Jun. 3, 2010 at 7:00 PM

 

Quoting muslimah:

 

Quoting tericared:

 

Quoting calilove12:

 

Quoting muslimah:

 

Quoting tericared:

 Double talk...something the zionist government of Israel is very good at...

'You have illegally entered Israel.' I said, 'Well, now, wait. Our ship was taken over by armed commandos. I was brought here at gunpoint against my will, and you call that illegally entering Israel?'" 


 

Unbelievable but so typical and predicable.


not surprised one bit.. this is way the way of these zionist Jews... they will murder anyone including US citizens but the US govt. will bow down to them... if they were Muslims or anyone else who did this US would be blasting them...   Yet we claim to be the greatest nation... more like a nation brainwashed and b**** of israel

 You are right if this had been reversed and Muslims attack a ship in International waters, there would be hell to pay.....No matter who you think is right when it comes to Palestine, this is the truth...

I more than any body hate to see the discrimination card played and am as far from being politically correct as one can be but I am left with no choice but to agree on this.

 

 Me too...but there is no doubt in my mind that, that statement is true...

Add your quick reply below:
You must be a member to reply to this post.
Join the Meeting Place for Moms!
Talk to other moms, share advice, and have fun!

(minimum 6 characters)