Honolulu’s Ann Wright, the retired Army Colonel and noted anti-war activist, can be seen in an online video being escorted off a ship by Israeli authorities following a violent clash between Israeli authorities and activists attempting to break that country’s three-year-old blockade of Gaza.
The video was shot Monday in the Israeli port city of Ashod, where vessels associated with the Gaza Freedom Flotilla were escorted after violence broke out during an Israeli commando raid Monday morning. Wright, who has made several trips to Gaza, was a participant in the flotilla, which involved eight ships and more than 700 activists, journalists and relief workers from various countries.
In the video, Wright can be seen at the 0:39 mark, walking calmly and apparently without difficulty. It was impossible to determine from the video whether or not Wright was injured in the clash, which according to Israeli newspaper Haaretz killed nine and injured at least 36 protesters and 10 Israeli soldiers.
Carolyn Hadfield, of Revolution Books, has hosted talks by Wright on the occasion of each of her three previous trips to Gaza. Hadfield said Tuesday that Wright’s state of mind in anticipation of her current journey reflected a growing urgency to bring humanitarian aid into Gaza.
“She was very, very urgent, very determined to do anything she could,” Hadfield said. “After each of her three trips, each time there has been a real escalation in the urgency and the necessity to get humantarian aid in.”
Hadfield said Wright was prepared for confrontation.
“She had no illusions. I think her military background serves her well in this regard. She knew that the Israeli government would do whatever it thought was necessary to intimidate [the participants in the flotilla.]”
Israeli authorities have blamed flotilla participants for reacting agressively to what the Israelis say was a legal attempt to board the ships in international waters.
Hadfield described Wright as having been prepared for any outcome. “She was very clear and aware of what she was undertaking.”
Attempts by the Weekly to contact Wright or others who might have more information on her condition were not immediately successful.