Statement of the Internationalist Socialist League (Israel/Occupied Palestine) and the Revolutionary Communist International Tendency (RCIT), 5.4.2013
“My story is no different from that of many other Palestinian young people who were born and have lived their whole lives under Israeli occupation. At 17, I was arrested for the first time, and jailed for two years. I was arrested again in my early 20s, at the height of the second intifada in Ramallah, during an Israeli invasion of numerous cities in the West Bank – what Israel called Operation Defensive Shield. I was sentenced to 30 years in prison on charges relating to my resistance to the occupation”
(A letter from Samer Issawi March 3, 2013)
This year we mark the Nakba Day with the demand:”Free Samer Issawi, Free all Palestinian political prisoners!”. The imprisonment of our children, brothers and sisters, parents and grandparents, for resisting the occupation and the oppression is a direct continuation of the ethnic cleansing of 1947-8. Those, who expelled 900,000 Palestinians in the Nakba, to establish the Israeli racist state, have continued this crime with the imprisonment of 650.000 Palestinians since June 1967. Those who imprison the Palestinian people for resisting the oppression torture them in jails and let them die of cancer without medical treatment.
The story of Maisara Abu Hamdiyeh, who was serving a life sentence in Israeli jail, and who died of throat cancer on Tuesday, because of a very late diagnosis and lack of proper medical treatment is not an exception but another crime committed by the Zionist state. The Israeli authorities claim they informed Abu Hamdiyeh, 64 years old, of his illness in February. Yet he was hospitalized only on 30th March 2012, two months after Israel claims he was diagnosed with cancer! Furthermore, prisoner’s rights groups say the diagnosis occurred already in August 2012. His lawyers and relatives report that Israeli doctors ran biopsies on him after he repeatedly complained for months of throat pains. The doctors of the prisons who did not diagnose on time nor treated Maisara Abu Hamdiyeh for six long months are the same doctors who approve the isolation of Palestinian prisoners for months and years. They are the same doctors who have seen the torture of prisoners and kept quiet. They are doctors who are part of the oppressive machine used by the Zionist apartheid state to try to break the will power of the Palestinians to resist the stealing of the lands, houses and all the other cruel forms of daily oppression.
According to a report by Amira Hass in Haaretz April 4, 2013 the Israel security forces use systematic torture when they investigate Palestinians detainees even though these means are in violation of the ruling on the Israeli Supreme Court of 1999. The prison doctors collaborate with these methods. Since 2001 700 Palestinian prisoners submitted complaints to the Ministry of Justice against their torture but the Ministry has ignored all the complaints.
However, in spite of the very powerful killing machine which the Zionist ruling class – backed by the other imperialists – have built, and in spite of the ugly role of the Palestinian Authority, that tries its best to prevent the Palestinian masses from struggling, they can not break the growing resistance and a new popular intifada is only a question of time.
To win the anti imperialist, anti Zionist struggle it is necessary to analyze and learn all the lessons of the previous intifadas. The lessons of the 1936-9, the lessons of 1987-1993, and the lessons of the last intifada that began in 2000.
The lesson of the heroic struggle of 1936-9 is that while the workers and the peasants are revolutionaries, the big landlords are too afraid of the masses to provide a revolutionary leadership. Another lesson is that the rulers of the semi-colonial Arab countries prefer to work with and for the imperialists than to lead a democratic revolution. The third lesson we can learn from the 1936-9 uprising is that the Communist party which was born as a revolutionary working class party in the early 1920s became a reformist one already in 1936 because instead of struggling for workers-led revolution supported by the peasants and the lower middle class, it supported politically the big landlords. Without a revolutionary working class leadership the great energy of the rebelling masses is wasted and thus the class enemy wins.
The lesson of the 1987-1993 uprising is that the masses uniting in struggle have such a great power that the imperialist military machine is unable to end the struggle. For this reason the imperialist used the Oslo Accord to create illusion in an imperialist scheme. This treacherous Oslo Accord demonstrated that bourgeois (Fatah) and the radical petit-bourgeois left fronts – like the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine and the Democratic Front for the Liberation of Palestine – do not have the program, theory and method to lead the masses to a victory. Instead they all capitulated to the imperialists and accepted the Oslo agreement – the device the imperialist used to end the uprising. The lesson of the Intifada that began in 2000 is that individual military actions – even the most courageous – are not a substitute to the revolutionary upraising of the masses.
If we will have to sum up all these lessons than what is necessary is for the workers to lead a revolution supported by the peasants, the poor, the small business people, the oppressed women and youth. For the workers to lead such a revolution a working class revolutionary leadership is necessary.
A Palestinian Intifada as part of the revolutionary uprising in the region can win as part of a socialist revolution in the entire region and as part of the world socialist revolution.
We in the Internationalist Socialist League, Arabs and Jews, fight for such a working class leadership. We offer against the Zionist nightmare of an apartheid state from the river to the sea a revolutionary perspective of a democratic Palestinian state from the river to the sea, that in its class contents will be a multi-national workers state supported by the Fallahin from the river to the sea.
We call to mobilize the Palestinian masses and those Jews who support them on the following demands:
* Release all Palestinian political prisoners!
* Support the right of the return of the Palestinian refugees!
* Stop the trial against the people of Shefa Amr who defended the city against fascist murdering attack!