Lise Hand: Government steers out of diplomatic waters to firmly condemn Israel
Published 01/06/2010 | 05:00
What a set of images to wake up to. By breakfast time, televisions had begun to show shaky dramatic footage of dark figures dropping out of the night sky and onto the deck of a ship. There was confusion, shouting, gunfire, fighting, fright, distress and blood.
The earliest of yesterday morning's news bulletins put the number of dead aboard the Mavi Marmara as a result of the Israeli ambush on the humanitarian aid convoy at somewhere between 10 and 19. By evening, the actual number of deaths had still not emerged from the fog of aggression. The fate of the dozen Irish people who took part in the flotilla bringing aid into Gaza only began to emerge piecemeal as the long day wore on.
Even before the echoes of the gunshots had faded, the verbal battle for the moral high ground was under way. This time, the ground under the Israelis was very shaky indeed, as the dramatic footage of the attack on a multinational aid mission as it sailed through international waters was played over and over.