Statement on Lebanon and the Current Middle Eastern Conflict
From the Socialist Action National Office
The massive Israeli
collective punishments of the populations of Lebanon and Gaza and the specter
of a new Middle East War that they have raised are a dramatic revelation of the
fact that the Zionist state depends on terror to maintain itself in the face of
the hostility of the people of the region. The present crisis is also
demonstrating to the world that in the long run an apartheid Jewish state
cannot be sustained.
Even commentators in the
big Western countries that support Israel has been declaring that so
far Hizbullah is winning the war. What a guerrilla organization needs to win is
simply to survive and to inspire popular support, as Hizbullah is clearly
New York Times of July 28
noted that Arab public opinion has swung overwhelmingly behind the Lebanese
Hizbullah is hitting the
Achilles Heel of the Zionist settler state, its relatively small population and
its relatively small economy. Under a rain of missiles that the Israeli
military has been unable to stop or even mitigate, the northern third of Israel has
already become paralyzed and largely depopulated.
Israel’s dependence on U.S. military
aid has been highlighted by a special shipment of “smart bombs” in the midst of
the present crisis. But this conflict has also pointed up the limits of U.S. power in
The U.S. has been unable to defeat the resistance in
and secure its control of the country. It would be taking an enormous risk if
it confronted Syria and Iran, the two
states that support Hizbullah. The Iranian government has said that it will not
tolerate a U.S. attack on Syria, and it
has very considerable political and military resources at its command. Iranian
volunteers are already on their way to Lebanon to reinforce Hizbullah. And
the Iranians could tip the Shiites in Iraq
into active opposition to the U.S.
occupation and thereby multiply the challenges that face it.
The resistance of Hizbullah
and the Palestinian organizations to the Israeli onslaught has demonstrated
that the Arab population of the region cannot be enduringly intimated by
Zionist collective punishments. And the U.S.
defeat in Iraq
shows that in general the relationship of forces is deteriorating for
imperialism in the region.
The initial provocation
for the present crisis was in fact Israeli repression in Gaza. The kidnapping of an Israel soldier
by the Palestinian resistance was motivated by the urgent need that
Palestinians feel to force the Israelis to release at least some of the 10,000
Palestinian prisoners they hold.
resistance groups that carried out the kidnapping demanded only that Israel release
about 100 women prisoners and some prisoners who have been held many years. The
Zionist rulers then took the pretext of the kidnapping to launch a huge collective
punishment operation to crush the people of Gaza. Hizbullah could not stand by and watch
the Palestinians crushed. And so it acted, thereby providing the pretext for
the murderous Israeli assault on Lebanon.
Therefore, the first
prerequisite for ending the present slaughter is that Israel end its
practice of collective punishments. Following the experience of the Nazi
occupation in Europe, international law has
banned such measures. They are specifically outlawed by the Geneva Convention,
which was adopted in the wake of the World War II experience.
repression of the Palestinians must end and the prisoners must be released.
Palestinians have to be guaranteed democratic and equal rights through their
historic homeland. The logic of this, of course, is the replacement of the
Zionist apartheid state and the Palestinian Bantustan with a democratic secular
which Jews and Arabs can live together. This ultimately is the only way to end
the chronic warfare in the Middle East and to
avert the threat of even wider and larger scale conflicts resulting from it.
Stop the U.S. and
Israeli bombings and terror in the
Occupation is a crime, from
Iraq to Lebanon and Palestine!
Self-determination for Palestine!
Stop all U.S. aid to Israel!
Free the 9,000
Israeli-held Palestinian political prisoners!
Equal rights for Palestinians
throughout the historic land