(photo credit: Hurriet)
Turkey’s top daily,
Hurriet on Sunday published pictures of Shayetet 13 soldiers – helpless,
possibly unconscious, badly beaten and bloodied.
The paper claimed these images
were censored by Israel by being deleted from memory-cards when the
activists’ cameras were in Israeli hands.
Mavi Marmara: Go back to Auschwitz
Why was the IDF duped?
IDF spokesperson said the images,
difficult though they are to watch,
prove the claims made by IDF soldiers that they fired only because their
lives were in danger, those aboard wnated to take Israeli lives. This
proves the restraint with which the soldiers acted, the IDF said, the
pictures could have been prevented, but because the Shayetet 13 warriors
were aware of the sensitivity of the situation and were most careful to
distinguish between peace activists and fighters, they came to harm.
The images, of soldiers dragged along the
floor, down staircases and of fighters with iron bars guarding a cabin
door, seem actually to corroborate the IDF reports that the soldiers
were attacked, and were in danger of being held as hostages. Charges
denied by flotilla organizers.
On Saturday The Jerusalem Post reported the IDF had identified one of the
passengers aboard the Mavi Marmara, which navy
earlier this week, as the ringleader of a group of mercenaries who were
recruited from a city in northwest Turkey, according to new details from
the military’s ongoing investigation of the Gaza flotilla.
IDF identified a group of about 50 men – of the 700
on board – who were well-trained and were stationed throughout the
ship, mostly on the upper deck, where they laid an ambush for the IDF
soldiers who rappelled onto the deck from helicopters.