Sometimes former US Rep. and recent Green Party presidential candidate Cynthia McKinney comes across a little…ah…wild-eyed. I do happen to agree with most of her foreign policy positions, and she even seems to prefer a hands-off approach to Zimbabwe and, surprisingly, liberal cause cÃ©lÃ¨bre Darfur. I do find her positions on trade to be poorly informed but this isn’t kookery — most politicians hold similarly dirigiste views.
But no matter what one thinks of Ms. McKinney, she backs her convictions not just with her own money but her very skin: she went as a human rights advocate aboard a Gaza relief boat. And this morning, that boat was rammed three times by an Israeli patrol vessel, leaving it damaged and forcing it to take a detour in Tyre, Lebanon.
“I would call it ramming. Let’s just call it as it is,” McKinney said. “Our boat was rammed three times, twice in the front and once on the side.
“Our mission was a peaceful mission, but our mission was thwarted by the Israelis, the aggressiveness of the Israeli military.”
No other current or former US Congressperson has done something similar, as far as I know. Dennis Kucinich is calling for a United nations inquiry, and I suppose that’s a nice gesture. But Ms. McKinney got herself on board a ship to steward relief supplies to the suffering civilians of a war zone beseiged by weapons her own country financed. Maybe it takes a little wackiness to get us some real activism.