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American Management, Emirati Financing, & “Israeli” Supervision: Details of the Blue Beach Plan

By Ibrahim Al-Amin

Al-Akhbar Newspaper , 19 Mar 2024 12:28

Islam Times - “No major Western capital says no to the Americans. Why would you expect a small country like Cyprus to do that?”

These are the words of an individual who was taking part in negotiations to facilitate the delivery of urgent humanitarian aid to the Gaza Strip.

He made the remarks after the Americans, at the behest of the “Israelis” and with Emirati support, dismantled an integrated Cypriot plan to establish a sustainable sea corridor connecting the Gaza Strip to the world.

The Cypriot plan, presented in late November, was based on a realistic assumption that the “Israelis” were sealing off land crossings into Gaza, the Egyptians were not making sufficient efforts to overturn the “Israeli” decision, and the humanitarian situation was becoming dire.

The Cypriots based their maneuvers on a round of consultations with most of the countries and parties concerned with the war.

They received great support but did not get approval for the mechanisms they devised to make the project a success, especially when the “Israelis” rejected any mechanism that did not allow them to fully supervise the work both before and after the arrival of aid to the Strip.

It has become clear to all those working on aid shipments that the West tailors to “Israel’s” demands not to give Gaza any breathing room.

The “Israelis” also want the West to seize everything heading to Gaza by sea and land and to exploit this process to impose a new civil administration in Gaza that is not under Hamas’ supervision. They want to turn the population against the resistance by conditioning access to aid.

Meanwhile, there is growing concern among parties supporting a permanent ceasefire about the exploitation of this process to “force the people of Gaza to coexist with the continuation of the war and the continuation of this type of aid.”

As usual, the UK is quick to take on “dirty tasks.” After David Cameron assumed his role as the head of the Foreign Office, he borrowed from the Foreign Intelligence Service an improvised humanitarian support plan to be carried out across the sea. It presented competition to the Cypriot plan.

Cameron took the initiative to offer his country's logistical services to help establish a floating bridge that would facilitate the transfer of aid across the sea to the shore.

But everyone was waiting for the results of the war on the ground. As time passed, the West felt compelled to take steps to improve its international PR image. But this ran in parallel with trying to establish a new reality on the ground in Gaza that could be used in the ‘day after’ project in Palestine.

In light of these concerns, the Americans reached a formula that required the formation of a team that included the UAE [management and financing], Cyprus [Logistical management], and “Israel” [audit and supervision].

Meanwhile, Washington was responsible for contacting Qatar, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia, and Western capitals to participate in financing the operation. The executive management was entrusted to Fogbow, a company owned by former officers and members of the US Marines and American Special Forces. “Israel” would then assign a security company to cooperate with the Cypriot authorities to inspect aid ships before they depart from Larnaca to the shores of Gaza.

Technically, the plan was approved, and it got cover from the European Union and the United Nations. Exploratory meetings have begun in Cyprus. Next Friday, the island nation will play host to a meeting of the executive command room for the operation, which was called the ‘Blue Beach Plan’.

Al-Akhbar learned that Friday’s meeting will be attended by Cypriot Foreign Minister Constantinos Kombos, Director of Cypriot Foreign Intelligence Tasos Tzionis, UN Senior Humanitarian and Reconstruction Coordinator for Gaza, Sigrid Kaag, Head of Political Bureau in the “Israeli” Ministry of Foreign Affairs, Aliza Bin-Noun, and the UAE Minister for International Cooperation, Reem Al Hashimy, and Curtis Ried, Chief of Staff of the US National Security Council and Assistant to Brett McGurk, Senior Advisor to the US President for Middle East Affairs.

According to Al-Akhbar sources, the American side, in cooperation with the Cypriots, has initiated practical steps that Fogbow will undertake.

Last week, an action mechanism was agreed upon to achieve the goal of transferring aid, “provided that it is in accordance with the priority as determined by the humanitarian community while raising humanitarian capacity and other aid lines to Gaza, increasing coordination with Cyprus and donor countries, and ensuring commitment to implementing ‘Israeli’ security requirements.”

The sources added that the work takes into account “the plan to establish a temporary dock by the US Army, while excluding from its scope of work other humanitarian operations, such as the aid shipment sent by the Global Central Kitchen.”

They added that the authorities concerned with the file “completed the economic study on opening the sea corridor and have obtained ‘Israeli’ approval and the support of Cyprus, the US, Qatar, and the UAE” and “work is underway to send 200 containers of aid daily in the first period, which can be increased depending on the security situation.”

The sources also said that the entity supervising the Blue Beach Plan is working with many countries “to establish a fund that supports the purchase and transport of humanitarian aid and the operation of logistical and maritime operations, with work to begin three weeks after the funds become available.”

It was agreed between the concerned parties that the task of determining “the final safe delivery point rests with the party controlling the means of maritime transport, in coordination with the occupation army.”

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