Gaza flotilla incident reminded many people with the famous SS Exodus incident and it also reminded many others with the famous USS Liberty incident whose anniversary is after 3 days
Despite the differences between USS liberty and Gaza flotilla yet both ships were attacked in international waters , Americans were killed by IDF on both of them and one of the flotilla passengers was from the original passengers of USS Liberty.
Joe Meadors was on the board of Sfendoi Ship that was captured in the flotilla and he shared with the world his experience in his second encounter with the IDF.
Why is USS liberty interesting to our POWs Case ??
Well some crew members of the USS liberty believes that the IDF may have thought that the ship had intercepted communications between the Israelis speaking about a massacre for our POWs in Al Arish citadel to be specific.
Today was the start of the six days war from 43 years ago , today was the start of a series of war crimes against civilians and POWs alike , it is not our issue here who won the battle or who lost but rather who respected the international laws and who did not.
Many Pro-Egyptian regime writers claims that the rights of the Egyptian POWs have been restored in 1973 Yom Kippor war but they are wrong because the rights of Egyptian and Arab POWs are not restored by wars and battles but with the law , the international laws.
Many Egyptians from Alexandria to Aswan remember today their beloved ones whether fathers, brothers and sons who went to a battle they did not know anything about , they remember them and wish one day to see those who killed their beloved ones in captivity behind bars as war criminals.
I thought that Ben Eliezer had to leave Qatar yesterday due to the attack on the Gaza flotilla , well I was wrong and I apologize for this as my sources were wrong , the infamous hero of Shaked war crime did not leave on the contrary he was having a very good cheerful time.
It turned out that he attended cheerfully the world economic forum in Doha along with icons and leaders from Arab world like for example Prince Hamad of Qatar who was very angry yesterday for what happened against the peace activists issuing a powerful statement and demanding an immediate Arab summit !!
Also Queen Rania of Jordan who showered her twitter account with sad facts about Gaza suffering under the Israeli occupation yesterday was at the same time at the conference with Fouad !!
I understand the double personalities our rulers suffer from but whom they think they are fooling.
Here is a photo of a war criminal smiling in Qatar
The assault on the Gaza flotilla by the IDF is not something strange , this is the usual IDF which breaks international law without any accountability. Despite its barbaric nature , Israel is now paying the price , protests are everywhere in the world condemning its actions and Ben Eliazer was forced to return back to Israel from Qatar due to what happened,
Already the prince of Qatar has declined to meet him today due to the attack on flotilla.
Infamous Benyamin Ben Eliazer is visiting Qatar to head the Israeli delegation for the World Economic forum held in Doha there. He is the first Israeli minister to visit Doha Officially since the War on Gaza last year. Ben Eliazer is among the main Israeli officers demanded to be prosecuted for war crimes against the Egyptian POWs in the Six days war.
Now despite knowing the ministerial position of Ben Eliazer , yet I do not understand why or how Qatar officially receives him with all his bloody history !! This man should be arrested for war crimes but anyhow Qatar received before Omar El-Bashir if I am not mistaken !!
Many Egyptians know that President Hosni Mubarak had a cameo in an old black and white Egyptian film in 1950s but most Egyptians ignore the fact that President Mubarak was captured as a POW in a war. Contrary to what you may think he was not captured as a POW in our wars 1956 and 1967 , President Mubarak was captured in the Sand war between Morocco and Algeria in 1963.
During that war Egypt was supporting Algeria against Morocco politically and militarily , it is not clear up till now the participation of Mubarak and whether he was transferring weapons or he was leading a squad of Egyptian and Algerian pilots , probably the later story is the correct one as it is supported by the Moroccans themselves. Lieutenant Hosni Mubarak and his group were captured in Moroccan Aïn Chouatèr area .
As soon as notorious general Mohamed Oufkir knew about the capture of Egyptian and Algerian pilots , he ordered their immediate transfer to Marrakech for interrogation otherwise he would cut off the head of his officers !! God only knows what those young men had seen on the hand of that man. In the same year King Hassan exchanged our POWs in president Nasser’s presence at the African summit in Bamako.
This story found its way again after long time of neglect in 2009 when Moroccan newspaper Al Alam published an interview with the man who captured a man who became the president of the powerful Arab country in the world. In 2009 Moroccan Pilot Saleh Hashad spoke about the incident breifly on Al Jazeera channel.
There is no clear reason why this has not been mentioned in our official media or in Mubarak’s official biography despite the facts the Moroccans do not hide it and we have good relations with them and President Sadat who preceded President Mubarak was in jail in twice for two grave charges and he did not hide at all. Some people claimed that this incident did not find its way to the Egyptian public because the regime loves to hide the Nasserite regime mistakes which is untrue because during the Sadat’s era we knew much more grave mistakes and sins the Nasser regime had committed against the Egyptian and Arabic public.
The capture period is very hard for any solider and God only knows what Mubarak and his follow Egyptian pilots had seen on the hands of General Oufkir till their return back to Cairo so it is natural that that experience had left its remarks on Mubarak and re-shaped even on a little scale part of his personality. President Mubarak as a human knows very well what it means to become a POW and and how it feels to fear on your life and your constant wonder on whether you will return home or not ; this is why it is shocking to know how the Mubarak regime is treating our 1956 and 1967 POWs file.
In 1995 after the shameful confessions of IDF commanders of committing war crimes against our POWs in 1956 Suez War and what followed it affecting our mutual relations then , French Libération continued to cover the matter internationally revealing things we did not know about then back in Egypt for some reason. In August 1995 the French newspaper published a small newspaper based on an interview with an Israeli official , Elie Dayan who was the Israeli Deputy Minister of Foreign Affairs with an unnamed Egyptian newspaper that Israel was ready to pay compensation to families of the 900 Egyptian prisoners massacred by Israeli soldiers during the wars of 1956 and 1967 and that those acts did not represent the Hebrew State…etc.
I do not recall that interview but I believe the French newspaper could have quoted Al Ahram newspaper. It is very important statement for sure and I do not have to bet that in the original interview Dayan said the following : “Israel is ready to pay compensation for the 900 Egyptian prisoners if they were proven to be murdered by the IDF” because after few days we found in the same newspaper a small news saying that Shimon Perez , the new Prime minister then promised to open an investigation in to the matter in order to calm down the Egyptian angry public then despite the Israel’s Attorney General back then “Michael Ben-Yair” had ruled that there was no basis for prosecuting soldiers for wars crimes or offenses as he had described it in 1956 and 1967 war because of a 20 years limitation on homicide charges !! The attorney general did not considered the crimes against our POWs as war crimes !!
Literature is known to be the mirror of the society and its share from its social and political defeats and triumphs especially when it is inspired by real events like wars.
In 1960 one of Israel’s finest authors and playwrights Aharon Megged wrote a novel called “The fortunes of a fool” which
was published in 1960 , the novel is about the Suez war and its reflection on the hero of the novel , the fool who suffers in his social life to the degree that he wishes to kill himself finding a final resort in a terrible war.
In the 310 pages novel there is a whole chapter dedicated to the military tribunal of that fool hero who refused to follow his commanders’ orders and kill the Egyptian POWs he was guarding where there is that interesting dialogue between the judge and the fool hero showing how the Israeli military establishment supported and approved ((still does)) the murder of unarmed Arab POWs.
There is no doubt that Megged did not imagine that tribunal and that support to POWs murder from nothing , there is no smoke without fire, already in 1956 Israeli military correspondent then Amir Oren wrote about the Metla massacre then in Israeli newspaper “Davar“. There is no doubt that Megged was inspired by Oren’s reports where he wrote that whole chapter in that novel to represent his hero as a fool in the eyes of a military establishment.
“The fortunes of a fool” was translated in to English in 1962 in the United States. I do not know if it has been translated
in to Arabic or not despite the fact that other Megged’s have been translated in the Arab world as an example to the contemporary Israeli literature. This novel shows the importance of reading and translating the Israeli literature which is another window to understand the Israeli and Zionist mindsets. I knew about this novel from a 2009 op-ed by Dr. Ibrahim El-Bahrawy ((professor of Hebrew in Ain Shams university)) who was among the first to introduce examples from Israeli literature to the Egyptian and Arabic readers since early 1970s.
The English translation is available in Amazon.com if you are interested in reading it.
One may wonder how the Egyptians treated Israeli POWs , Maj. Gen. Hassan Al-Gandali, a former chief of operations of the Egyptian army, said there were a number of Israeli POWs in Egyptian camps in 1973. “We were very much concerned about their welfare, though we were aware of the way the Israelis had dealt with our POWs under their custody,” Hassan said.
“As I was the chief of operations, I accompanied Egyptian Defense Minister Musheer Ahmad Ismail to the camp in which Col. Esaf Yagouri and 150 prisoners were kept. On seeing us the prisoners looked so terrified as they seemed to think that we were going to send them to the firing squad in return for what Israel had done to the Egyptian POWs in the past. On the other hand, Musheer told them that he did not blame them for obeying the orders of their superiors though it was to occupy a territory belonging to another country. ‘However, you will be treated in line with the Geneva Conventions. So you have nothing to worry about,’ Musheer said.
“Then he asked the commander of the camp about the sick POWs and took special care of them. He also ordered the camp commander to take the POWs for sightseeing in Cairo, including a trip to the pyramids and a boat ride on the Nile. After a few moments of disbelief the prisoners broke into a deafening applause. This is how the Egyptians treat their prisoners of war.”
This is for those who wonder how things would be they were the other way around !!
Of course for those who may disbelieve Major General Al-Gandali I would like them to read the comment of Mr. Eran Jacoby