Or is it the other way around?
Regardless, Israel blew this opening round in the summer games--they should have embedded the press and had live streaming video coverage as they went in. The fact is that this entire event was a media set up. Turkey is spoiling for a fight and eager to jump into the hole left by US incompetence.
Having set up the charade to run the blockade Hamas-style (capture some soldiers coming aboard in the first wave and hold them hostage in the hold), they are now demanding blood. In fact, they have promised to send another flotilla--but this one will probably be backed by a navy flotilla of their own.
One of the uncertainties about the coming summer festivities has been how the Turks will play their hand. The flotilla farce is nothing more than their Trojan Horse (after all, Troy IS one of their national treasures). Now, it would appear to be the first round of the next war.
Israel has a strong army, a strong air force, but a very weak navy. The maritime enterprise, as a whole, is basically an after thought. Now, they may be facing an entirely new front with a potentially serous combatant. For all intents and purposes, the entire coast of Israel is unprotected by a NATO class navy to shore bombardment. It is an empirical question how well the IAF would do against the Turkish navy. Not well, thinks the Turk.
It is fascinating to watch the weight of world opinion (in places like Germany that has an interesting record of liberating captured Olympic hostages to terror) react to the Turkish Trojan Horse. My favorite is from the Atlantic online blogger:
A simple point. The violence by the activists is pretty abhorrent. These are not followers of Gandhi or MLK Jr. But the violence is not fatal to anyone and it is in response to a dawn commando raid by armed soldiers. They are engaging in self-defense. More to the point: theya r (sic) civilians confronting one of the best militaries in the world.
Does this guy read this stuff? Well, dah! The violence was not fatal to anyone YET because the entire charade was STOPPED after the IDF personnel, armed with PAINT BALL weapons of mass destruction, got serious, drew their weapons, and STOPPED IT. To STOP the violence intent on killing and maiming soldiers required FORCE. THAT stopped the violence from spreading. And how do we know they are not Turkish professionals dressed as civilians? Other than a set up, what do we REALLY know?
It is very clear that the Turks intended to break the blockade one way or another. Now, they are turning up the heat and they have the tactical advantage. The next flotilla could involve a naval engagement and the opening round in the next regional war. Very interesting. Maybe Israel needs to redeploy its missile subs (if they can). The fact is that the region is heating up at an increasing rate. Not good.
This is good news, however, for Obama--this will be his FIRST disaster that will be clearly his own fault. Way to go, Dude.
Of course, the O-Man can make points if he sends a flotilla to cover Israel's flank and tells the Turks that the US and NATO will not tolerate war talk on an allied state.
But, he won't. He wants the fireworks for the Fourth of July.