Mass struggle for liberation, peace and socialism
Text of leaflet produced by Socialist Alternative
- Stop the war! End missile strikes and attacks on Gaza. No to ground offensive and expansion of the war into a regional bloodbath
- End the siege and the occupation! Solidarity with residents from both national communities that face indiscriminate attacks, imprisonment and destruction of lives.
- Trade unions to mobilise mass protests of workers, young people, anti-war and anti-racist campaigners across the UK
- Resist the Anti-Boycott Bill! No to Tory attempts to restrict the right to protest
- For mass struggle against occupation and war! For a socialist Palestinian state with its capital in East Jerusalem, for a socialist change in Israel and in the whole region
Socialist Alternative stands in solidarity with the Palestinian masses who face the horrors of war in already unbearable living conditions in besieged Gaza, the biggest ‘open prison’ in the world. We stand in solidarity with civilians from all communities, on both sides of the fence, who have suffered thousands of deaths.
These dramatic events mark a new stage in one of the longest national conflicts in history. The question that needs to be asked is not ‘who shot first’ but what is the root cause of this war. Israeli capitalism, with its huge military power, carries out state terrorism by enforcing occupation, annexation, ethnic cleansing and denies millions basic rights, including the right to self-determination.
The two million residents of Gaza have lived under siege for the last 17 years, enforced by both the Israeli and Egyptian regimes. Netanyahu’s government now threatens to turn Gaza ‘into rubble’ and takes measures of collective punishment against Gazans of a ‘complete siege’; Not allowing supplies of food, water, fuel and electricity.
The cynical claims of the most far-right government in Israel’s history, to seek ‘peace’ and the ‘normalisation’ of the occupation via talks with Saudi Arabia, were also a big factor in the current escalation. The same government also led to the deadliest year in the Occupied West Bank since 2005, killing more than 200 Palestinians in almost daily military raids. There can be no peace without ending the occupation and siege.
The current escalation could be even more devastating than previous ones with the potential of a wider ground offensive and regional war, egged on by US imperialism which has pledged military backing to Netanyahu.
Socialist Alternative calls for a mass struggle to end the siege, occupation and poverty and for the right for self-determination of the Palestinian people.
How can liberation be won?
The latest unprecedented attack by Hamas marked a new stage. Hundreds crossed one of the most heavily secured borders in the world, temporarily pushing back the Israeli military, the most advanced army in the Middle East. These images, of a breach of the siege fence and a show of force against the power that imprisons two million Palestinians, was seen as an act of liberation. But Hamas attacks also included indiscriminate rocket firing, killing hundreds of civilians, including working and poor women and men from both national communities, and taking hostage of Israeli civilians, including children and elderly women. These are methods of terrorism that we oppose and will not lead to liberation.
In the face of a siege and occupation and a possible military invasion, the Palestinian people have the right to fight attacks on them and organise to defend themselves, including by arms. The struggle of the Palestinian people can be organised most effectively as a part of a strategy of building a mass struggle for liberation, run by democratically elected action committees. Tools such as workers’ strike action, mass marches with and organised self-defence, can take the movement to a new level. This is not compatible with the political programme and strategy of Hamas which has also recently repressed protests by Palestinians within Gaza against the energy and the cost of living crisis.
Those responsible for the brutal policies against Palestinians in Gaza are the Israeli regime and its imperialist allies. Hamas attacks should not be seen outside of the context of the state terror of the Israeli capitalist and imperialist regime, which for years has detained thousands of Palestinians without trial, including children. However, the Israeli regime will cynically take advantage of such attacks against Israeli civilians to foster the lie that the siege of Gaza is a “defensive” policy for their security and try to “legitimise” killing and destruction on a large scale of the Gaza Strip.
A mass struggle poses a more fundamental risk for the regime than rounds of military confrontation. A mass movement can also much more effectively win sympathy and support from working class people on a regional and global level, and even influence workers and young people in the Jewish population. Protests such as the Palestinian “dignity strike” that took place in May 2021, which was an extraordinary all-Palestinian general strike organised towards the end of the last war, was a step in the right direction for a working class-led Palestinian liberation struggle.
Capitalism and imperialism mean national oppression, ‘divide and rule’, war, and poverty. We fight for a socialist change in the region, guaranteeing equal rights for self-determination and laying the basis for a society run in the interests of workers and poor from all national and ethnic backgrounds, not warmongers and generals.