Wednesday, December 31, 2008

A Boat Called Dignity

A small boat (the SS Dignity) carrying doctors, human rights activists and three tonnes of medical supplies from Cyprus to Gaza was rammed by the Israeli navy in international waters yesterday, forcing the damaged boat to dock in southern Lebanon instead.
Those on board the Dignity said they were rammed twice in the dark and without warning by the Israeli navy. The latter insisted they were the victims of a media stunt...
English captain David Halpin told Reuters the wheelhouse glass of the boat was smashed and the rail ripped almost all the way from bow to stern. He also said an Israeli vessel rammed the boat after he had refused to stop the boat’s course to Gaza.
Why is an attack on unarmed civilians on a boat in international waters carrying supplies for the suffering not reported as 'act of terrorism' by the British Media I wonder?

Tuesday, December 30, 2008

I wish you a ‘Happy Interim!’

OK I admit it, I had intended to post a message before Xmas, but the first part of December was hectic, and I didn’t get round to it! It was Xmas Eve before I wrapped any presents, and if it hadn’t been for the joys of Internet shopping (my special thanks to the Amnesty International website) they probably would have been late too!
We are in this interlude between Xmas and New Year that doesn’t have a name. The time of year when some people are working, but many are taking an extended break. Of course some don’t have a choice, 20-30% of Woolworth’s stores have already closed and the rest will be over the next few days. Reality seems to bite hard after Boxing Day.
Last year Benazir Bhutto was assassinated, this year we witness the savage slaughter of civilians in Gaza, and yet more killing in Congo. We need cease fires now, and a renewed commitment to peaceful resolution of conflicts in 2009.

Wednesday, December 10, 2008

Campaign against Climate Change Demonstration

I was pleased to be able to join a strong Liberal Democrat contingent at last Saturday’s demonstration against climate change in London. These events are important in raising the issue, and keeping it in the public eye. There is an urgent need for international action and I am hopeful that President Obama will ensure American co-operation once he is sworn in next month.
(Steve with Lib Dem MP Susan Kramer and Duncan Hames, Prospective Lib Dem Candidate for Chippenham at the march).