Smoking Gun Photos From Mavi Marmara?

Here’s new meaning to smoking gun photos. The Israeli navy has obtained photos taken aboard the Mavi Marmara of IHH “humanitarian activists” holding guns. YNet News reports:

Photos recently obtained by the Navy show a weapon hanging off the shoulder of one of the IHH members. Another photo shows a gun. It is as yet unclear who took the photos. One of the images allegedly shows MK Hanin Zoabi, who took part in the flotilla, standing next to an armed activist . . . .

Navy sources could not explain why the photos have only recently been received.

“One photo of activists carrying firearms is worth a 100 combatants’ testimonies,” a military source said. “It’s a PR asset of the first order.”

It’s no secret that these people have a thing for guns and cameras. Last year, Turks on a different Free Gaza convoy that reached Gaza overland hammed it up with their Islamic Jihad buddies. The “souvenir photos” like this one were embarrassing enough.

I’d sure like to see these new Mavi Marmara photos and find out where they came from. If they’re genuine, releasing the photos would put a big dent in the IHH’s credibility, become an issue in Turkey’s June 12 elections,  and hopefully help Israel head off the next flotilla.

UPDATE 5:20 pm I presume the army’s verifying the authenticity of the photos before releasing them. You know those photos will be scrutinized, and the world will want to know who took the photos, that they’re not Israeli fauxtography, and of course, the biggest question of all, why now?

Yes, it would’ve been nice to have them a year ago, but it’s not hard to imagine some plausible scenarios of why it took a year for the images to reach Israeli hands.

I’m tempted to say better late than never, but even that isn’t appropriate. We got the images before the next big flotilla and before the Turkish elections. All we can do is wait and see if they confirm what a lot of people have suspected all along and let the chips fall where they may.

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