The argument contrived by the UN Panel to justify Israel’s naval blockade consists of a sequence of interrelated propositions:

The Israeli naval blockade of Gaza was unrelated to the Israeli land blockade;

Israel confronted a significant security threat from Gaza’s coastal waters;

Israel imposed the naval blockade in response to this security threat;

The naval blockade was the only means Israel had at its disposal to meet the threat posed by the flotillas;

The Israeli naval blockade achieved its security objective without causing disproportionate harm to Gaza’s civilian population.

To pronounce the naval blockade legal, the UN Panel had to sustain each and every one of these propositions. If even one were false, its defence of the blockade collapsed. The astonishing thing is that they are all false. Each will be addressed in turn.

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