Silence, a people is being murdered!

Lutte Ouvrière workplace newsletter
October 30, 2023

In Gaza, for three weeks now, the Israeli army has been indiscriminately massacring men, women, children, the elderly and the sick... How many people have lost their lives? 8,000? How many have disappeared under the rubble, how many others have been killed for lack of medical care, by this merciless blockade, how many lives shattered by this carnage?

"We're all waiting for our turn to die," said a desperate Gazan who had written his telephone number and their name on the bodies of his children, so that they could be identified in the event of a bombardment.

But neither Biden, Macron nor any other leader of the major Western powers will speak of barbarism or terrorism. These terms are reserved for Hamas. The Israeli army's methodical massacre is called "war". And this war is intensifying with ground operations in the Gaza Strip.

Only the United States could restrain Israel's arm. It doesn’t, because for decades the State of Israel has been its staunchest ally in the region. And this has nothing to do with the need to protect the Jewish people, victims of the greatest genocide in the 20th century. It is, as ever, to defend their own interests.

Time and again, the Israeli state has demonstrated to the great Western powers that it can represent their interests. Armed and financed by US governments, Israel has thus become imperialism's most loyal and reliable outpost in a region that is crucial for oil and trade.

Despite the colonization, expropriation and oppression of Palestinians, the US has systematically covered up for Israel. France has followed suit, merely distinguishing itself with a few symbolic gestures of compassion towards the Palestinians. So today, Netanyahu has a free hand to wage, as he puts it, "a long and difficult existential war". But who knows whether this rush into war will remain confined to Israel and the Gaza Strip?

The West Bank is seething with anger. Lebanon, Jordan, Yemen, Syria and even Iran could all be drawn into the war at any moment. The Arab regimes that have become closer to Israel in recent years are under pressure from their populations, and even the fiercest dictatorships can be destabilized.

The wall of incomprehension between Jews and Arabs will be reinforced by tens of thousands of corpses. After that, who will dare speak of peace? When the guns fall silent, it'll be a peace of cemeteries and prisons for the Palestinians, until a new generation of rebels takes up the fight.

That kind of peace is no peace for anyone! Even for the Israelis, it won't be peace. Because living with your hand on the trigger is not living in peace. For three quarters of a century, Israeli leaders have assured Jews that they would guarantee them peace and security. Today we can see what those promises were worth! For 75 years, the country has been at war almost without interruption. As long as the rights of Palestinians are violated in Gaza, the West Bank and Israel, as well as in the many refugee camps in Lebanon, Syria and Jordan, Israelis will never live in security.

To achieve peace, it will not be enough for Palestinians and Israelis to choose different leaders and abandon their nationalist policy of eliminating their neighbors. It will take even more than recognition of the Palestinians' right to their own state: it will require the overthrow of the imperialist order.

Not only has it created and maintained chaos in the region by multiplying artificial divisions, it has also condemned the peoples of poor countries the world over to misery, dependence and exploitation, as is the case for the working population of the Middle East.

Behind the Palestinian cause and Israel's right to exist lies the cause of all workers. The struggle against imperialism, i.e. against capitalism, is the only path that will enable peoples to live together as equals in the Middle East and throughout the world.

The people who want to be active in putting an end to the bloody spiral we are witnessing have a role to play: they can participate in building a party to overthrow the exploiters on an international scale. A party capable of uniting all workers, whether they are Muslims, Jews, Christians, atheists, etc., and willing to fight against the divisions created by racism and antisemitism. A party defending the ideal of equality, fraternity and peace for all the world's oppressed. A party committed to building the only society capable of achieving this: a socialist society.

Nathalie Arthaud