(Friday 15th August) Today I was going to write about about practical developments, here in the waters of the Greek islands. Of setting sail again, of bumpy seas and equally churning stomachs.
However, the suject of today's bulletin is psychological terrorism. Over the the past 72 hours almost a dozen aggressive messages have been received by members of the groups both on board the ships and in Cyprus. In Nicosia, where twenty human rights campaginers including Hedy Epstein await to board the Freegaza and the Liberty, anonymous callers have been making threats to the general well being of all concerned.
Some of these texts, calls and answer messages focus on the ships being 'blown up' or 'destroyed, killing all on board.' Unnerving enough. But today I can reveal even more pernicious acts of psychological violence on those both reporting and supporting this effort to ease the blockade of Gaza by Israel.
Since Monday, some campaigners, (who I will not name here for obvious reasons), have received phone calls made to their mobiles. More disturbingly, in an increasing number of cases - to family members.
Now, it is my turn. Yesterday afternoon, on the 14th of August 2008, an anonymnous young man called my home in France as my daughters played hide and seek in the garden. This stranger spoke to my husband, warning him that 'your wife is in great danger. These ships will be blown up.' My husband asked how it was this person had obtained our private home number. No response was forthcoming, but the illicit threats carried on.
Who is behind these phone calls? Who benefits by upsetting the families of those onboard the Freegaza and the Liberty? Who would wish to unsettle journalists aboard as unarmed ships set sail towards the waters around Gaza and almost certain interception by Israeli forces?
The answer is clear.
I will carry on bringing you reports from the waters around Greece, Cyprus and who knows some day soon, even Gaza.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY
Silence is the bullies best friend.