Senator Mark Kirk of Illinois sure is earning the hundreds of thousands of dollars the Israel lobby dumps into his coffers. In a report based on a recent “fact-finding” trip to the Middle East, Kirk calls for U.S. naval and special operations forces to support Israel in combating the upcoming flotilla to Gaza.
Kirk’s report reads:
The IHH plans to send a second flotilla to breach Israel’s coastal security later this month. To prevent further violence, the United States should:
1) immediately designate the IHH as a terrorist entity under Executive Order 13224, which targets “terrorists, terrorist organizations, and those providing financial, technological, or material support to terrorists, terrorist organizations, or acts of terrorism”;
2) make available all necessary special operations and naval support to the Israeli Navy to effectively disable flotilla vessels before they can pose a threat to Israeli coastal security or put Israeli lives at risk; and
3) make it clear to Turkish President Erdogan that Turkey will be held accountable for any actions that support or enable the IHH to launch its flotilla.
The flotilla, set to sail to Gaza at the end of this month, aims to nonviolently challenge the Israeli blockade that has suffocated the Gaza Strip. Kirk’s call for the U.S. Navy to provide “special operations and naval support to the Israeli Navy” to stop the flotilla is particularly alarming because a contingent of American citizens will be a part of the flotilla. Kirk would have no problem, it seems, with the U.S. Navy being deployed against U.S. citizens aiming to break the blockade, which has been termed “collective punishment” by the International Committee of the Red Cross.