Israelis given small taste of their own medicine

In a successful demonstration in response to the recent attack on the flotilla that sought to break the blockade of Gaza, in which Israeli troops killed nine people, Oakland, California saw an Israeli ship blocked by protesters for the first time in maritime history.  Up to a thousand protesters blocked four different gates at 5:30 on Sunday morning, 20th June. The picket was in place as an Israeli ship was preparing to dock,  keeping dockworkers from unloading the Israeli cargo.  International Longshore Workers' Union (ILWU) members refused to cross the picketline, citing health and safety provisions of their contract.  In response, management exercised its right to demand "instant arbitration."  The arbitrator took a look at the picketlines at each gate to the SSA Terminal and ruled that ILWU members were justified in refusing to cross.  All dockworkers were sent home with full pay. Demonstrators were protesting the Israeli attack on the flotilla that sought to break the blockade of Gaza, in which Israeli troops killed nine people.   In the afternoon, with picketlines again in front of the gate, management decided not to ask for a crew of longshosre workers to unload the ship, in the expectation that the crew would again not enter the terminal.

See a video of the event

Thanks to David Bacon and Tom Vee for reports of the successful picket.  The photograph is by David Bacon