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Israeli document: Gaza blockade isn't about security

Israeli document: Gaza blockade isn't about securityAs Israel ordered a slight easing of its blockade of the Gaza Strip Wednesday, McClatchy obtained an Israeli government document that describes the blockade not as a security measure but as "economic warfare" against the Islamist group Hamas, which rules the Palestinian territory.

Israel imposed severe restrictions on Gaza in June 2007, after Hamas won elections and took control of the coastal enclave after winning elections there the previous year, and the government has long said that the aim of the blockade is to stem the flow of weapons to militants in Gaza.

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Israel to ease blockade in exchange for watered-down investigation

Palestinians wait for Hamas police officers to check their passports as they wait to cross to EgyptIsrael is poised to accept a British plan to ease its blockade of Gaza in exchange for international acceptance of a watered-down investigation into last week's deadly raid on a Turkish aid ship, sources said on Tuesday.

Britain is understood to have taken a leading role in the negotiations and last week circulated a confidential document proposing ways of easing the blockade, according to Western officials familiar with a draft version of the report.

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Never mind the 'Freedom Flotilla.' Is Israel's Gaza blockade legal?

Is the Gaza blockade legal?

Israel’s raid of a “Freedom Flotilla” of activists that ended with nine deaths brought a global firestorm of protest, dimmed the chances for a peace deal, and threatened Israel’s relations with Turkey, its closest ally in the region.

Both sides immediately claimed the protection of international law, with Israel citing legal justification for effectively extending its naval blockade into international waters where the flotilla was heading for Gaza. Yet for most Western governments, with the exception of the United States, the question is not so much the legality or illegality of Israel’s action. Rather, European countries from Germany to Britain are focusing on the broader legal context of Israel’s blockade of the Gaza Strip and the suffering of civilians there.

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Probation for trying to arrest Bush for war crimes

Probation for trying to arrest Bush for war crimesAnti-George W. Bush protester John Boncore will be spared a criminal record for his attempts to gain access to the former U.S. president and arrest him for war crimes. Calgary provincial court Judge Manfred Delong ruled Monday that a conditional discharge for the Chase, B.C., resident would not be contrary to the public interest.

Delong said if Boncore successfully completes a one-year period of probation, which includes making a $1,000 donation to his favourite charity, he will not have a criminal record.

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Activists: Israeli boat raiders had ‘assassination list’

Passengers aboard the Mavi Marmara, the ship raided by Israel Monday, claim they found what they say is a list of people the Israeli military intended to target during their raid, a news report out of Great Britain states.

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Israeli government's media madness

Israeli government's media madnessBut the most recent video distributed on Friday by the Israeli government press office (which belongs to the Israeli prime minister's office and is responsible for accrediting foreign journalists) is distasteful and insulting to those killed and injured on the Freedom Flotilla, and quite frankly disturbing - especially since it was made by the Jerusalem Post's deputy managing editor, Caroline Glick, who also moonlights for the American Center for Security Policy in Washington, DC.

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Ex-Mossad agent: Gaza flotilla raid ’so stupid it’s stupefying’

For one, Ostrovsky suggested, commandos could have approached the ship from under water and disabled the propellers, letting the activists drift for days until their food supplies ran out. He added that Israeli soldiers should not have fast-roped into a crowd as they had, instead suggesting that it would have been more productive to board the ship from the front and back, then work inward.

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