Israeli commandos used lethal force when they intercepted an aid convoy in international waters heading for the Gaza strip, where over one million Palestinians are trapped behind an Israeli government blockade.
The killing of nine aid volunteers by the commandos has provoked angry demonstrations in Turkey, where the flotilla of ships set out from, and around the world.
The misnamed United Nations Security Council bowed to the US administration and refused to pass a resolution condemning the Israeli government and instead just called for an ‘impartial investigation’ into the loss of lives.
The Socialist Party condemns the Israeli government and our members participated in the spontaneous protests that took place earlier this week.
The 700 people on board the boats have all undertaken this mission out of concern for the people of Gaza, who are now entering their fourth year under siege, without access to basic necessities.
These people posed no threat to Israel, and were completely unarmed. The aid they were attempting to deliver included construction materials which would have helped the people of Gaza rebuild some of the homes destroyed by Israel in 2009.
We call for an immediate end to the siege and blockade that is taking place against Gaza by the Israeli government. We support the common interests of ordinary people on both sides of the divide as the basis for an end to the conflict forever.
In Israel, where the flotilla of ships has been forcibly taken to, left wing activists including members of Tnua’t Maavak Sozialisti (Socialist Struggle Movement, the Israeli counterpart of the Socialist Party) demonstrated against the armed attack on the aid convoy and also against the continuing government siege of Gaza and the occupation of the Palestinian territories on the West Bank.
Tnua’t Maavak Sozialisti issued the following statement: “The Israeli government cynically shakes off responsibility. But there’s no need for a ‘state commission of inquiry’ to understand that responsibility for the killing lies on the shoulders of the ministers and top officers.
“We’re being presented with a simplistic picture, according to which the IDF soldiers were attacked on one of the boats with different objects. The IDF soldiers should not have been there to begin with!
“We reject emphatically the use – common in Israel – of the military and ‘security’ to trample on the right of protest.
“The ministers, generals, and their kept journalists, attempt to divert attention from the aggressive, destructive and oppressive policy that the Netanyahu-Barak-Lieberman government executes, including the siege and occupation of Gaza, and the racist incitement against the Arab-Palestinian public in Israel. The Israeli government, which oppresses the Palestinians, is also harming the long term interests of the residents of Israel.”
The only way to end such disasters and other horrors of the Israeli/Palestinian conflict is through the independent struggle of Israeli and Palestinian workers, building and coordinating mass action against the instigators of ‘divide and rule’, the siege and occupation, and all oppression and discrimination. A movement that demands democratic national rights for all, and for the overthrow of the corrupt capitalist elites in the region.
The Socialist Party calls for:
– End the Israeli blockade of Gaza. For the immediate withdrawal of the Israeli army from the Palestinian territories.
– For a mass struggle of the Palestinians, under their own democratic control, to fight for genuine national liberation.
– For independent workers’ organisations in Palestine and Israel.
– No trust in the world’s capitalist governments or the UN.
– For working class support, throughout the Middle East and internationally, for the Palestinians’ struggle.
– For a struggle for democratic socialism in Palestine, Israel and throughout the Middle East, with guaranteed democratic rights for all national minorities.