rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Deltaport action protests Zim, in solidarity with the Gaza Freedom Flotilla

Please chip in to support more articles like this. Support rabble.ca for as little as $5 per month!

VANCOUVER -- Twenty activists from throughout the Lower Mainland gathered early today at Deltaport for an information picket targeting a major Israeli shipping company, Zim. The action was in solidarity with the Freedom Flotilla to Gaza, which included a Canadian Boat and which has been prevented from sailing to the occupied and blockaded Palestinian territory.

Irene MacInnes explained, "While Gazans cannot travel or ship exports by sea, massive Israeli companies like Zim are able to freely do business around the world despite their connection to the unjust policies that bring so much suffering to Palestinians." MacInnes was one of more than 30 Canadian delegates on the Tahrir, one of the aid flotilla ships prevented by the Greek government and Coast Guard from sailing from that country's ports to Gaza in June and July of this year.

At Deltaport, activists passed out information for over an hour to dockworkers and truckers coming to and from the port, one of the largest container terminals in Vancovuer, Canada's largest shipping port. They held signs and banners supporting the flotilla and the campaign for boycott of Zim and other Israeli-owned companies and products. The educational action delayed traffic to the port and accomplished its aim of reaching out to workers handling Zim cargo.

Zim is by far the biggest Israeli shipping company, and one of the 10 largest in the world, with 60 weekly services to 180 ports worldwide, including Deltaport. This year's Freedom Flotilla was a follow up to a similar effort in May 2010, when Israeli armed forces raided a Turkish aid ship, the Mavi Marmara, killing nine activists.

Following that massacre, a number of Palestinian labour organizations issued a call for international solidarity. Dockworkers in the U.S., Sweden, Turkey, India and South Africa have responded with support actions.

Media outlets covering the morning picket action included CTV, CityTV, GlobalTV, CKNW radio (AM 980) and both local newspapers, the Delta Optimist and the South Delta Leader. The event was also documented by the organizers. Photos and a video report on the action will be available shortly.

Police attempted to stop or curtail the protest. One activist was arrested and later released, with a court appearance scheduled for September. We will keep people posted if further legal support is needed for this person.

Also today, a small French boat that is part of the Freedom Flotilla, the Dignity, attempted to sail to Gaza but was boarded in international waters by the Israeli navy and forcibly taken to the port of Ashdod. Canadian Boat to Gaza activist Stephan Corriveau was on board and remains in Israeli custody. Solidarity actions are taking place tonight in Ottawa, Toronto and Montreal (for more information on support actions visit http://tahrir.ca/).

The Deltaport action was organized by activists from the Boycott Israeli Apartheid Campaign (BIAC) and the Vancouver committee of the Canadian Boat to Gaza (CBG).

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.