Not a smart thing to sayForeign Minister Avigdor Lieberman said on Monday that Israel would apologize to Turkey for the Mavi Marmara when the United States apologizes to Pakistan for accidentally killing 24 Pakistani soldiers.
“The Pakistanis asked the US to apologize, and the Americans said ‘no way,’” Liberman said in reference to the November incident where US forces accidentally fired on two Pakistani border posts.Sorry, but that was not a smart thing to say. The Apologizer could yet decide to apologize to Pakistan, and where would that leave us?
The US has since expressed regret for the incident, something Israel has also said it was willing to do regarding the killing of nine Turks on the May 2010 flotilla that aimed to break the blockade of Gaza.
“So when they come to us and pressure us to apologize over the Marmara, because of this or that constraint, sometimes even to best friends you must say ‘no.’ Otherwise, no one will respect you,” Liberman declared.
The Wall Street Journal reported in May that during discussions last December in Washington over whether it should apologize to the Pakistanis, Flournoy suggested language whereby the US would apologize for the “unintentional and tragic” deaths, but would not accept full responsibility. According to the paper, she argued that the “US risked the issue festering.”
No US apology has yet been forthcoming, and The Wall Street Journal quoted a senior administration official as wondering how Washington could apologize to a country that was providing, at least through some parts of its government, tacit support to those attacking US troops.
“This isn’t about politics,” the official is quoted as saying. “This is about the message that would send to our troops and that is what no one in the military or the White House could countenance.”
The cases are not comparable anyway. The United States attacked Pakistanis on Pakistani soil - Israel attacked blockade runners on the high seas. Israel did not 'invade' the territory of a sovereign country.