Re.: Sharon, spearhead of the terrorist state

Abu Nasr abu-nasr at SPAMusa.net
Sat Oct 14 11:23:12 MDT 2000


Dear all!

I must apologise for neglecting you all at this critical time.  Things have
been very busy and still are.  Just following events is a 24-hour job.  I'll
try to jump in when I can to help keep the fires buring.

First, one observation.  It's true that the terrorist Sharon's visit to the
Haram ash-Sharif was a provocation and that it sparked the current Intifadat
al-Aqsa or Aqsa Intifada as it's being called.  But it was only a spark that
started smouldering coals burning.

In my estimation, really this is still THE Intifada.  The Intifada of the
80s-90s arose because the basic issues of Palestine -- exile of 5 million
Palestinians, occupation of all of Palestine, Zionist aggression upon
neighbouring countries, Zionist repression of Palestinians and their rights,
including religious ones, among those still living in occupied Palestine --
all these issues were still unsolved.  The regimes with the 1967 and 1973 wars
couldn't resolve them.  The Palestinian armed struggle didn't resolve them (or
didn't have a chance to), and after the Zionists destroyed Beirut and the
Palestinian resistance base there, the masses inside Palestine took their
battle into their own hands in the uprising of the stones.

Then after the 1990-1991 US aggression against Iraq, the US pushed the Arafat
leadership onto the Oslo course, halting the Intifada and pursuing what the
west calls "peace", but what has turned out to be (as we expected, of course)
dictated Zionist-Imperialist terms.

Now, which of the basic issues of Palestine did the Oslo process -- and
subsequent agreements at Wye River, Sharm al-Shaykh and all the rest -- solve?
 NONE!!  The Palestinians are now allowed to declare a Palestine Authority,
but that is basically Israeli permission for Palestinians to carry out Israeli
orders.  Meanwhile, the five million Palestinians in exile are completely
outside the framework of the Oslo process.  Lebanon was able to liberate most
of its territory by armed struggle in spite of the Zionists.

Thus the record of achievements as far as Palestinians are concerned stands
at: Peace Process -- nothing; Armed Struggle -- one.

Recently we saw the Camp David Farce and the Meetings in Paris, which were
really comical if not so utterly embarrasing.  Clearly Arafat was being told
that Palestinians couldn't even expect to get back East Jerusalem, although
that territory should go back to them even under the UN resolutions on return
of occupied lands, and even though the US government has never recognized the
Zionists' "right" to that half of the city.  Even Palestinian "control" of the
historic Haram ash-Sharif mosque was to be symbolic and truncated, virtually
limited to a flag and the right to sweep out the courtyard.  Barak clearly
indicated that the issue of 5 million Palestinians displaced by the Zionist
invasion was none of his concern.  So, basically, there is nothing to
negotiate about here.

Despite the denunciation by all the Palestinian opposition of the meeting,
Arafat later went to Paris to try to iron out something with the Zionists.  At
one point he stormed out of the meeting in outrage.  Madelaine Albright came
charging out after him yelling at him to stop, and then ordering the guards to
close the gates and not let him get out.  Literally and figuratively trapped,
Arafat agreed to resume the talks that as we all know led nowhere.

There is no peaceful alternative to uprising and force.  None.

Today the powers are talking about ending the uprising a second time.  But
quite frankly even if they succeed, the uprising will flare up at some point
again because there is simply no way that the basic issues are going to be
solved by negotiations.

Zionist Israel is NOT going to let in 5 million Palestinian exiles to their
homes (this is, I believe, the real stumbling block to a "peace", more than
Jerusalem is) and they are obviously intent on Judaising Palestine, probably
including the Haram ash-Sharif and in any case they insist on a level of
control that precludes any real Palestinian independence -- Zionist control of
the Palestinian border, including that with Jordan, control of who comes and
goes in the state, control of its economy, the division of Palestine into a
chequerboard of enclaves each surrounded by Zionist security roads so each can
be locked down like prison cells in emergencies such as we are witnessing
now.

For the international supporters of "peace" to call for an end to the violence
and a return to "normality" as Vladimir Putin has done (and he is far from the
worst, he just comes to mind) is to consider as "normal" the military
occupation of Palestine and the total disposession of the Palestinian people!

No.  Normal is the intifada, a path to resolving the contradiction between a
people disposessed, repressed, and exploited, and the forces that are
disposessing, repressing, and exploiting them.  What progressives around the
world should be doing is not call for the end of the violence and an
investigation into how it started (which investigation would be hijacked by
the US anyhow, given the international situatation, and mean basically
nothing), but standing up for the right of the Palestinians to struggle.

Of course the killing of chldren -- 30 percent or so of the Palestinian
victims of the Intifada of al-Aqsa have been children -- arouses much sympathy
as it should, but at least the dead no longer have to endure the continuation
of the military occupation -- a situation to which a return to the status quo
would condemn all the survivors.

There is a good cartoon on the next to the last page of the London-based
Arabic paper "al-Quds al-Arabi" today.  It shows an Arab shattering the chain
that bound his arms.  The links on the chain spell p. e. a. c. e.

Yes, the "peace" that we have been treated to is slavery.

It's like the case of "globalism".  The word is nice.  It's supposed to mean
all the people of the world getting together.  What it actually means is the
imperialists taking over and exploiting the globe. We support internationalism
instead.

Similarly, the imperialists' peace means enforcing the status quo on Arabs and
Palestinians -- division, exile, mass poverty, powerlessness, tyranny --
that's what "peace" means, as the years since Oslo clearly show.  We support
national liberation instead.

On a related topic, there has been talk on this list that the Palestinians
need to do more to distinguish between Jews and Zionists.  Well, quite
honestly, although the important distinction does indeed exist and should
always be kept in mind, I don't know why this issue is being raised now.  Has
someone heard of a progressive Israeli Jew being wrongfully assaulted or
victimised by Palestinians?  I don't think that would be applauded even by
Hamas.  Just now I looked at the BBC website and saw a picture of a joint
demonstration in New York of Muslims and Hasidic Jews against the Zionists.
They are cooperating.  They are not fighting each other.  It really is not
complicated for the Palestinians to understand this.  And they do understand
it.

I'm sure, for example, that there are plenty of criticisms progressives could
also make of predominant Palestinian patriarchal family practices and the
problems regarding attitudes towards leaders, or economic dependence, or
relgion, or the role of women.  Why aren't more girls throwing stones?  Why
aren't more little girls being shot instead of mostly boys?  for example?
Such issues are not wrong theoretically, but right now, it is Palestinian and
Arab unity in struggle that must be striven for, and abroad there is a need
for solidarity with the Intifada.  If somebody sees an incident of Palestinian
"anti-Semitism" please raise it for discussion.

Quite honestly, the criterion for a non-Zionist, progressive Jew is a Jew who
supports the Palestinian struggle for self-determination and the Palestinian
aspiration for a secular democratic state of Palestine, and calls for the end
of the "Jewish state."  Unfortunately very few Israeli Jews fall into that
category.  Some do.  Of course there should be unity with them.  But they are
very marginal to "Israeli" society.  Even Hamas which espouses a religious
worldview, quotes Noam Chomsky and other progressives of Jewish origin, so
this is really not an issue in dispute.

But because Jewish supporters of Palestinian liberation and a secular state
are so few, quite frankly the need to work for unity with them is not going to
figure prominently in Palestinian speeches right now.  It is simply not a
matter on a plane with real practical political tasks like achieving unity
within Palestinian and Arab ranks.  That is the unity that really raises the
fighting power of the anti-Imperialist, anti-Zionist cause in the Arab
region.

I suppose this issue of distinguishing between Jews and Zionists is raised so
prominently now on this list because it is primarily a discussion among
Marxists outside the region where there are many Jews in militant Marxist
circles.  Here it has an urgency perhaps that it simply dosen't have on the
battlefields of Palestine itself right now, where the Palestinians are
familiar with the distinction and usually are able to draw it in those rare,
very rare, occasions where it is necessary to do so.  In the vast majority of
cases, unfortunately, the Jews whom they see on the other side of the
barricades shooting at them are indeed Zionists.

Yesterday the Iraqi newsagency published a call from the Pan-Arab leadership
of the Arab Socialist Baath Party to regard all official representatives of
the USA in the Arab world as enemies and treat them accordingly.  Now, maybe
some of those US sailors and marines, those diplomats and others who work
under the US flag are decent individuals or possibly even progressives who
just couldn't get work elsewhere.  Should we unite with them?  Theoretically,
yes.  But realistically the Iraqi call is what makes practical sense on the
ground.  This is not a dinner party.  This is war.  People need to pick sides
and be prepared for the consequences.

With revolutionary greetings!

Abu Nasr

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