Spiral of atrocities in the Middle East: the terrifying reality of decomposing capitalism

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Israel and Gaza since 7 October 2023: war in all its abomination, an explosion of barbarity.  On that day, in the name of "justified revenge" against "the crimes of the Zionist occupation", thousands of fanatical "fighters" from Hamas and its allies poured into the Israeli towns surrounding the Gaza Strip, spreading terror and committing crimes of unlimited savagery against defenceless civilians. No sooner had the Hamas murder squads been repelled than the IDF unleashed all its murderous might on the Gaza Strip in the name of the fight for "democratic civilisation" against "the forces of darkness": "We are fighting human animals and we are acting accordingly", declared Israeli Defence Minister Yoav Galant on 9 October[1] . For more than three months at the time of writing, Israeli aircraft and artillery have been pounding the overpopulated Hamas-controlled enclave day and night, massacring civilians and terrorists alike, while IDF armoured columns have been advancing through the ruins, shooting at anything that moves. Towns completely devastated, hospitals gutted by missiles, crowds of civilians wandering under the bombs, without food or water, families searching for loved ones under the ruins or mourning their dead everywhere... "Carthago delenda est" ("Carthage must be destroyed") was the obsessive refrain of Cato the Elder; this same obsession seems to haunt the minds of the ruling factions of the Israeli bourgeoisie. After only three months of conflict, Gaza already has proportionally more dead and destroyed buildings than Mariupol in Ukraine or the German cities bombed during the Second World War. This apocalyptic landscape is that of capitalism in the 21ste century.

These tens of thousands of Gazan civilians "eliminated", these millions of others thrown onto roads that lead nowhere, are the victims of the State of Israel, "the only democracy in the Near and Middle East", which claims to be the sole repository of the memory of the Holocaust and its extermination camps. Revolutionaries have been saying it for decades: capitalism is gradually plunging humanity into barbarism and chaos! In the Middle East, capitalism is revealing the future it has in store for all humanity! The war in Gaza is the perfect illustration of the terrifying intensification of the barbarity unleashed by capitalism in the final phase of its decadence, the period of decomposition.


The Middle East, a prime example of capitalism rotting on its feet

The history of the Middle East is a striking illustration of the terrifying expansion of militarism and war tensions, particularly since the decadence of capitalism in the early 20th century. Indeed, the collapse of the Ottoman Empire placed the region at the centre of imperialist appetites and confrontations[2] . 

In particular, after the Second World War, the region was marked by the establishment of the new State of Israel and successive Arab-Israeli wars in 1948, 1956, 1967 and 1973 (not forgetting Israel's invasion of Lebanon in 1982), and was a central area for confrontation between the Eastern and Western blocs. From the 1950s to the 1970s, the Soviet Union and its bloc made persistent attempts to gain a foothold in the region by supporting Arab nationalism and in particular the Palestinian fedayeen and the Palestine Liberation Organisation. These attempts met with strong opposition from the United States and the Western bloc, which made the State of Israel one of the spearheads of their policy. At the end of the 1970s and during the 1980s, the American bloc gradually gained overall control of the Middle East and gradually reduced the influence of the Soviet bloc, even though the fall of the Shah and the "Iranian revolution" in 1979 not only deprived the American bloc of an important bastion but also heralded, through the coming to power of the retrograde mullah regime, the growing decomposition of capitalism. The aim of this offensive by the American bloc was “completing the encirclement of the USSR, of depriving this country of all the positions it has been able to maintain outside its direct area of domination. It has as a priority the definitive expulsion of the USSR from the Middle East, through the disciplining of Iran and the re­insertion of this country into the US bloc as an important pawn in its global strategy. It has the ambition of going on to recuperate Indochina. In the final analysis, its aim is to completely strangle the USSR, to strip it of its status as a world power."[3] .

After the implosion of the Soviet bloc at the end of 1989, the 1990s were marked by the spectacular expansion of the manifestations of capitalism's period of decomposition. In this context, the "Report on imperialist tensions" of the 20e ICC Congress already noted in 2013: "The Middle East is a terrible confirmation of our analyses of the impasse in the system and the flight into 'every man for himself'. It illustrates this in a striking way through the central characteristics of this phase:

  • the explosion of imperialist "every man for himself" through the expression of the hegemonic appetites of a multitude of states. Iran has expressed its imperialist ambitions, first in Iraq by supporting the main Shiite militias, which dominate a fragmented state apparatus, then in Syria by supporting Bashar al Assad's regime at arm's length, on the verge of being swept away by the revolt of the Sunni majority. Through its allies - from Lebanese Hezbollah to the Yemeni Houthis - the country of the mullahs has established itself as a formidable regional power. But Turkey, with its interventions in Iraq and Syria, Saudi Arabia and the United Arab Emirates, present in Yemen and Egypt, and even Qatar, the backer of groups linked to the Muslim Brotherhood, are not hiding their imperialist ambitions;
  • the murderous reactions of the American superpower to counter the decline of its dominance. The United States has provoked and waged two murderous wars in the Middle East (Operation Desert Storm by Bush senior in 1991 and Operation Iraqi Freedom by Bush junior in 2003), which in the end have only resulted in more chaos and barbarism;
  • the terrifying chaos resulting from bloody civil wars (Syria, Yemen) leading to the collapse of state structures, fragmented and failing states (Iraq, Lebanon), traumatised populations and millions of refugees.

In this dynamic of growing confrontation in the Middle East, Israel has played a key role. As the Americans' first lieutenant in the region, Tel Aviv was destined to be the keystone of a pacified region through the Oslo and Jericho-Gaza accords of 1993, one of the greatest successes of American diplomacy in the region, which granted the Palestinians the beginnings of autonomy and thus integrated them into the regional order conceived by Uncle Sam. However, in the second half of the 1990s, following the failure of the Israeli invasion of southern Lebanon, the "hard" Israeli right came to power (the first Netanyahu government from 1996 to 1999) against the wishes of the American government, which had supported Shimon Peres. From then on, the Right did everything it could to sabotage the peace process with the Palestinians:

  • in February 1994, a Jewish terrorist, a settler belonging to the racist movement created by Rabbi Meir Kahane, massacred 29 Muslims in the Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron; in November 1995, a young religious Zionist assassinated Prime Minister Yitzhak Rabin;
  • through the secret stimulation of Hamas and its terrorist attacks aimed at undermining the authority of the PLO, to pursue a policy of divide and rule and to justify its increasing control over the Palestinian territories. 

From this perspective, the unilateral dismantling of the settlements in Gaza by the Sharon government in 2004 was in no way a conciliatory gesture, as Israeli propaganda presented it, but on the contrary the product of a cynical calculation to freeze negotiations on a political settlement of the conflict at a later date: the withdrawal from Gaza "means freezing the political process. And when you freeze this process, you prevent the creation of a Palestinian state and any discussion on refugees, borders and Jerusalem"[4] . 

Moreover, since the Islamists reject the existence of a Jewish state in Islamic lands, just as the messianic Zionists reject the existence of a Palestinian state in the land of Israel, given by God to the Jews, these two factions are therefore objective allies in the sabotage of the "two-state solution". The right-wing sections of the Israeli bourgeoisie have also done everything in their power to strengthen the influence and resources of Hamas, insofar as this organisation was, like them, totally opposed to the Oslo Accords: in 2006, Prime Ministers Sharon and Olmert forbade the Palestinian Authority from deploying an additional police battalion to Gaza to oppose Hamas and authorised Hamas to present candidates in the 2006 elections. When Hamas staged a coup in Gaza in 2007 to eliminate the Palestinian Authority and establish their absolute power, the Israeli government refused to support the Palestinian police. As for the Qatari financial funds that Hamas needed to be able to govern, Israel allowed them to be regularly transferred to Gaza under the protection of the Israeli police.

Israel's strategy is clear: Gaza given to Hamas, the Palestinian Authority weakened, with limited control over the West Bank. Netanyahu himself has openly asserted this policy: "Anyone who wants to thwart the creation of a Palestinian state must support the strengthening of Hamas and transfer money to Hamas. This is part of our strategy"[5] . The headlong rush of the right-wing fractions of the Israeli bourgeoisie in power to follow their own imperialist policy, in opposition to Washington's interests, in particular with the successive Netanyahu governments from 2009 to the present day, is a caricature of the gangrene of decomposition eating away at the political apparatus of the bourgeoisie. The State of Israel and Hamas, at different times and with different means, have both practised the “worst-case policy” that has led to today's atrocious massacres.

In view of the priority given to containing Iran, Trump’s presidency pursued a policy of unconditional support for this policy of the Israeli right, providing the Israeli state and its respective leaders with pledges of unwavering support on all fronts: supply of the latest military equipment, recognition of East Jerusalem as the capital and of Israeli sovereignty over the Syrian Golan Heights. It supported the policy of abandoning the Oslo Accords and the "two-state" solution (Israeli and Palestinian) in the "Holy Land". The cessation of American aid to the Palestinians and the PLO and the negotiation of the "Abraham Accords", a proposal for a "big deal" involving the abandonment of any claim to create a Palestinian state and the annexation by Israel of large parts of Palestine in exchange for "giant" American economic aid, were essentially aimed at facilitating the de facto rapprochement between Saudi and Israel: "For the Gulf monarchies, Israel is no longer the enemy. This grand alliance started a long time ago behind the scenes, but has not yet been played out. The only way for the Americans to move in the desired direction is to obtain the green light from the Arab world, or rather from its new leaders, MBZ (Emirates) and MBS (Arabia), who share the same strategic vision for the Gulf, for whom Iran and political Islam are the main threats. In this vision, Israel is no longer an enemy, but a potential regional partner with whom it will be easier to counter Iranian expansion in the region. [...] For Israel, which for years has been seeking to normalise its relations with the Sunni Arab countries, the equation is simple: it is a question of seeking Israeli-Arab peace, without necessarily achieving peace with the Palestinians. For their part, the Gulf States have lowered their demands on the Palestinian issue. This ‘ultimate plan’ [...] seems to aspire to establish a new reality in the Middle East. A reality based on the Palestinians accepting their defeat, in exchange for a few billion dollars, and where Israelis and Arab countries, mainly from the Gulf, could finally form a new alliance, supported by the United States, to counter the threat of the expansion of a modern Persian empire"[6] .

However, as we pointed out back in 2019, these agreements, which were a pure provocation at both international (abandoning international agreements and UN resolutions) and regional level, could only reactivate the Palestinian bone of contention in the long term, which has been used by all the regional imperialists (Iran of course, but also Turkey and even Egypt) against the United States and its allies. What's more, they could only embolden Israel's counterpart in its own imperialist appetites and intensify confrontations, for example with Iran: "Neither Israel, hostile to the strengthening of Hezbollah in Lebanon and Syria, nor Saudi Arabia, can tolerate this Iranian advance"[7] . The Abraham Accords irrevocably sowed the seeds of the current tragedy in Gaza.


War in Gaza: the growing irrationality and barbarity of imperialist confrontation

Hamas's suicidal attack and Israel's indiscriminate retaliation appear to be the expression of a chaotic and unpredictable dynamic of imperialist confrontation, devoid of any rationality. Indeed, these three months of destruction and massacres around the Gaza Strip are clearly not part of a gradual process of alignment behind a dominant leader or adherence to an imperialist bloc in formation, but illustrate on the contrary the explosion of imperialist "every man for himself", increasingly interrelated with an exacerbation of militarism, a multiplication of economic upheavals and a growing loss of control by national bourgeoisies over their political apparatus. These bloody confrontations are both inevitable and irrational, because none of the protagonists can really derive any lasting strategic advantage from them (not to mention the economic consequences, which are likely to be catastrophic for everyone). 

If we look first at the direct belligerents, it is clear that the choice of the worst-case policy will not ultimately benefit any of them, but will produce a terrifying extension of destruction and barbarism:

  • For Hamas, which risked being totally marginalised by the consequences of the Abraham Accords, striking a blow was vital to redirect the international spotlight on the "Palestinian problem". Clearly, the 7 October attack was only made possible by a rapprochement with Iran, which supplied it with the appropriate weapons, but this rapprochement generated tensions within the organisation between the "military" (the commanders of the al-Qassam brigades) and the "political" leadership, which criticised Iran for its support for Assad during the civil war against Sunni groups in Syria. Moreover, by sending a thousand murderers to massacre civilians, Hamas is exposing itself to possible annihilation in Gaza and in any case to massive destruction of its forces. With these actions, this obscurantist and bloodthirsty band of "God’s madmen", which has replaced the rotten and corrupt Fatah in Gaza, is a caricature of the irrationality into which the Palestinian bourgeoisie has plunged.
  • As for the State of Israel, it has embarked on bloody reprisals which will give rise to a generation of Palestinians drunk with vengeance and which at the same time risk accentuating the internal destabilisation of the country, given the growing chaos which reigns in the Israeli political apparatus: tensions between factions of the bourgeoisie, massive corruption, legislative shenanigans, tensions between the government and the judiciary that poorly conceal score-settling within the state apparatus, the supremacist ravings of the ultra-Orthodox... All this against a backdrop of a considerable explosion in poverty. Above all, the indiscriminate unleashing of vengeance risks seriously destabilising the entire region, insofar as the right-wing factions are aiming to put an end once and for all to the "two-state solution" by engaging in the "ethnic cleansing" of Palestine of its entire Arab population, which can only accentuate opposition to the American "godfather".

The situation is hardly any different for the other protagonists involved in this conflict:

  • In the short term, Iran seems to be gaining some advantage from the situation, but for it is a Pyrrhic victory! In reality, the mullahs' regime is forced to opt for a headlong rush into provocations because it is under heavy pressure from the economic sanctions imposed by the United States, but also from social tensions within Iranian society itself, which is suffering misery and shortages of vital goods as a result of forty years of a war economy. What's more, Iran is exposed to harsh reprisals against its positions in Lebanon and Syria, and even to destructive attacks on its territory, such as the recent attacks in Kerman. Israel already regularly bombs Hezbollah or Iranian al-Quds Brigade installations in Lebanon, Syria and even Iraq, and is always ready to attack Iranian nuclear power stations, as in July 2019, when "mysterious" explosions destroyed a nuclear centrifuge construction plant in Natanz;
  • Turkey is part of the "Muslim Brotherhood" nebula with Qatar and Hamas and is therefore in the front line in condemning Israel: Erdogan has compared Netanyahu to Hitler and the Turkish police have arrested 33 people suspected of spying for Israel. Ankara is also quick to criticise the lukewarm attitude of the Gulf monarchies, demonstrating "the emergence of a brutal opposition between the Ankara-Doha axis and the Riyadh-Abu Dhabi axis. In July 2013, this opposition was already perceptible on the Egyptian stage during the coup d'état against President Mohamed Morsi"[8] ;
  • From Russia's point of view, the confrontations in Gaza are certainly diverting the attention of the United States and Europeans from Eastern Europe and reducing the pressure on the Ukrainian front. But the Gaza conflict also puts Moscow in a delicate position, torn between its traditional support for the Palestinian cause and its strategic rapprochement with Iran (which supplies it with drones) on the one hand, and Putin's good relations with Israel, and Netanyahu in particular, on the other (Israel does not take part in the programme of economic sanctions against Russia and, moreover, refrained from condemning the occupation of Crimea in 2014). Furthermore, a possible extension of the confrontations and interventions by other powers in the conflict could jeopardise Russian positions in Syria;
  • China is also benefiting from the momentary reorientation of Washington's attention, which no longer places the China Sea and Taiwan at the centre of its immediate concerns. However, while Chinese diplomacy, by reconciling the brotherly enemies Iran and Saudi Arabia and integrating these countries and Egypt into the BRICS, succeeded in relaunching a branch of the "Silk Roads" through the Middle East, which was to end in Israel, the current outbreak of chaos and atrocities risks not only undermining its supply of hydrocarbons, but also constituting a considerable obstacle to the implementation of the "Silk Roads", which the ailing Chinese economy badly needs;
  • Finally, as regards the world's leading power, the United States, the feverish reaction of the Biden administration, with an express visit by Biden to Tel Aviv and an almost weekly presence in the region by Secretary of State Blinken and Defence Secretary Austin, amply demonstrates that the war in Gaza is seriously disrupting their imperialist policy. During the Obama era, the United States embarked on an "Asian pivot", a policy of redirecting its economic and military resources to contain the Chinese challenger, a policy pursued and amplified by Trump and Biden. At the same time, they promoted a system of alliances between Israel and several Arab countries, in particular Saudi Arabia, to contain Iran's imperialist aspirations, delegating to the Jewish state the responsibility for maintaining order in the Middle East. But this was without taking into account the growing instability of alliances and the deep-seated tendency towards "every man for himself", and above all the increasingly marked tendency of the Israeli bourgeoisie to put its own imperialist interests ahead of those of the United States, 

The United States now finds itself backed into a corner by Israel, forced to support Netanyahu's irresponsible policy of "ethnic cleansing". Biden himself admitted as much at his press conference on 12 December: "They want revenge not just for what Hamas has done, but for all the Palestinians. They don't want a two-state solution". The US administration has little confidence in Netanyahu's clique, which risks setting the region on fire, while counting on American military and diplomatic support if the conflict escalates. Biden also regularly insists that "this indiscriminate bombing is causing Israel to lose its international support". The war in Gaza is therefore a new pressure point on US imperialist policy, which could prove calamitous if the conflict escalates. Washington would then have to assume a considerable military presence and support for Israel which could only weigh heavily, not only on the US economy, but also on its support for Ukraine and, even more so, on its strategy to contain China's expansion.

 In short, not only does no state have anything to gain from this hopeless conflict, but the continuation of the conflict can only lead to its extension and to even more destruction and barbarism. 

This applies first and foremost to Israel, as Mr Steinberg, one of Israel's leading experts on the Palestinian question, points out: "By pushing their main enemy to overreact, terrorist organisations seek to delegitimise it in the eyes of international opinion. This in turn gives them a form of legitimacy. If Israel does not withdraw from Gaza, it will face a form of omnipresent guerrilla warfare, the aim of which will be to trap it in a situation identical to the one it experienced in southern Lebanon. This would threaten relations with Egypt and Jordan, and could even call into question the peace treaties with these countries. Hamas would emerge stronger"[9] . While for Israel, the risk of remaining "stuck in the vicious circle of the Netanyahu years" could lead to "isolation and economic and social collapse"[10]; for the Middle East as a whole, the prospect of the conflict spreading to the whole region would generate a new spiral of barbarism, an outbreak of war dominated by "every man for himself", and the destabilisation of many states. The immediate consequences would be particularly devastating for the global economy as a whole, given the zone's importance in the production of hydrocarbons and in global naval transport. Finally, the conflict could be imported into Europe, with a series of deadly attacks and confrontations between communities.

The risk of a generalised conflagration in the Middle East is not negligible, and increases with the duration of the war. And the danger of the conflict spreading is becoming clearer: Hezbollah is firing rockets daily and, faced with these waves of missiles, the Israeli defence minister has threatened to invade southern Lebanon; Israel has "liquidated" one of the leaders of Hamas with a drone attack on a district of Beirut controlled by Hezbollah; bomb attacks are being carried out in Iran; the Houthis in Yemen attack merchant ships and oil tankers at the entrance to the Red Sea, prompting the formation of an "international coalition" involving the United States, Great Britain and other European states to "guarantee free circulation" in this artery vital to the world economy.

Far from the "bloc coherence" that prevailed until the collapse of the USSR, all the local players are ready to pull the trigger. Above all, the conflict risks opening up a new front, with Iran and its allies in ambush, likely to further weaken American leadershipThe political tensions within the American bourgeoisie and the resulting difficulties in controlling its political game are themselves a powerful factor fuelling instability. They limit the freedom of action of the Biden administration and push the Israeli factions in power (like Putin for the conflict in Ukraine) to temporise in the hope of Donald Trump's return to the presidency. Washington is, of course, trying to prevent the situation from getting out of hand... a perfectly illusory ambition in the long term, given the disastrous dynamic into which the Middle East is sinking.

Whatever action is taken, the dynamic towards destabilisation is inescapable. Basically, then, this is a significant new stage in the acceleration of global chaos. This conflict shows the extent to which each state is increasingly applying a "scorched earth" policy to defend its interests, seeking not to gain influence or conquer interests, but to sow chaos and destruction among its rivals. This tendency towards strategic irrationality, short-sightedness, unstable alliances and "every man for himself" is not an arbitrary policy of this or that state, nor the product of the sheer stupidity of this or that bourgeois faction in power. It is the consequence of the historical conditions, those of the decomposition of capitalism, in which all states confront each other. With the outbreak of war in Ukraine, this historical tendency and the weight of militarism on society have been profoundly aggravated. The war in Gaza confirms the extent to which imperialist war is now the main destabilising factor in capitalist society. The product of the contradictions of capitalism, the breath of war in turn feeds the fire of these same contradictions, increasing, through the weight of militarism, the economic crisis, the environmental disaster and the dismemberment of society. This dynamic tends to rot every part of society, to weaken every nation, starting with the foremost among them: the United States.


The working class confronted by the barbarity of a system in decomposition

For years, the situation of the population in general and the working class in particular in this region has been dramatic, especially in Iraq, Syria, Lebanon and Egypt. In Palestine, Hamas has bloodily repressed demonstrations against poverty, as it did in March 2019, while its mafia-like leaders gorge themselves on international aid (Hamas is one of the richest terrorist organisations on the planet). Today, all over the world, workers are being asked by the bourgeoisie to choose sides: "Palestinian resistance" or "Israeli democracy". As if they had no choice but to support one or other of these bloodthirsty bourgeois cliques.

On the one hand, the Israeli government is justifying the carnage by claiming to be avenging the victims of 7 October and preventing Hamas terrorists from again attacking the "security of the Jewish state". So much for the tens of thousands of innocent victims! Israel's security is worth a massacre! On the other side, they say: "We are not defending Hamas, we are defending the right of the 'Palestinian people' to self-determination", hoping to make us forget that "the right of the Palestinian people to self-determination" is just a formula designed to conceal the defence of what must be called the State of Gaza! The interests of proletarians in Palestine, Israel or any other country in the world must in no way be confused with those of their bourgeoisie and their state. A "liberated" Gaza Strip would mean nothing more than consolidating the odious regime of Hamas or any other faction of the Gazan bourgeoisie.

But some will argue that "the struggle of a colonised country for its liberation" undermines "the imperialism of the colonising states". In truth, as this article shows throughout, the Hamas attack is part of an imperialist logic that goes far beyond its own interests. "All the parties in the region have their hands on the trigger", said the Iranian Foreign Minister at the end of October. However weak it may be in the face of the power of the IDF, Hamas, like every national bourgeoisie since capitalism entered its period of decadence, can in no way magically escape the imperialist relations that govern the whole international arena. Supporting the Palestinian state means siding with the imperialist interests of Khamenei, Nasrallah, Erdogan and even Putin, who is rubbing his hands at the whole mess. There is no choice between this irrational Gazan gang thirsting for money and blood and Netanyahu's clique of the corrupt and the fanatical.

Finally, to complete the nationalist straitjacket in which the bourgeoisie seeks to imprison the working class, there are the pacifist campaigns: "We don't support either side! We demand an immediate ceasefire!” The most naïve no doubt imagine that the accelerated descent of capitalism into barbarism is due to the lack of "good will" on the part of the murderers at the head of the states, or even to a "failing democracy". But those in charge know perfectly well what sordid interests they are defending. Such is the case, for example, with President Biden, supplier of cluster bombs to Ukraine, who is "horrified" by the "indiscriminate bombing" of Gaza while continuing to supply the essential munitions. And if Biden has raised his voice in the face of Netanyahu's methods, it is not to "preserve peace in the world", but to concentrate his efforts and military forces on his rival China in the Pacific, and on Beijing's bulky Russian ally in Ukraine. There is therefore nothing to hope for from "peace" under the rule of capitalism, any more than after the victory of one side or another. The bourgeoisie has no solution to war!

 The solution will not come from the proletarians of Gaza, crushed under the bombs, or from those of Israel, appalled by the barbaric massacres of Hamas and drawn into chauvinist campaigns, as is the case with the proletarians of Ukraine or Russia. It can only come from the international working class, in its rejection of austerity and the sacrifices that the development of economic turmoil and militarism entails. 

Through the unprecedented series of struggles in many countries, in the United Kingdom with a year of mobilisations, in France against pension reform, in the United States against inflation in particular, in Canada, Scandinavia and Bangladesh recently, the working class is showing that it is capable of fighting, if not against war and militarism themselves, at least against the economic consequences of war, against the sacrifices demanded by the bourgeoisie to feed its war economy. This is a fundamental stage in the development of combativity and, ultimately, of class consciousness. The war in the Middle East, with the deepening of the crisis and the additional demand for weapons it will generate in the four corners of the planet, will only increase the objective conditions for the proletariat’s break with past decades[11] . 

The working class is not dead! Through its struggles, the proletariat is also confronting what true class solidarity is. In the face of war, workers' solidarity is not with the Palestinians or the Israelis. It is with the workers of Palestine and Israel, as it is with the workers of the whole world. Solidarity with the victims of the massacres certainly does not mean maintaining the nationalist mystifications which have led workers to place themselves behind a bourgeois clique. Workers' solidarity means above all developing the fight against the capitalist system, which is responsible for all wars. As the Communist Left clearly affirmed in the 1930s: "for real revolutionaries, naturally, there is no "Palestinian" question, but solely the struggle of all the exploited of the Near-East, Arabs and Jews included, which is part of a more general struggle of all the exploited of the entire world for the communist revolution "[12] . Revolutionary struggle cannot arise with a snap of the fingers. It certainly won't come from adherence to the nationalist or imperialist camps advocated by the bourgeoisie; today, it can only come through the development of workers' struggles, against the increasingly harsh economic attacks that the bourgeoisie throws at them. Today's struggles pave the way for tomorrow's revolution!


7.1.24 / R. Havanais




[1] "Un journal non aligné", Le Monde diplomatique, November 2023.

[2] For a more detailed overview of imperialist relations in the region up to the Second World War, see “Notes on the history of imperialist conflicts in the Middle East, Part 1 & 2”, International Review no. 115, 2003 and no. 117, 2004.

[3] What is at stake/Resolution on the international situation, 6th ICC Congress, International Review no. 44, 1986.

[4] Dov Weissglas, close adviser to Prime Minister Sharon, in the daily Haaretz, 8 October 2004. Quoted in Ch. Enderlin, "L'erreur stratégique d'Israël"Le Monde diplomatique, January 2024.

[5] Netanyahu to Likud MPs on 11 March 2019, as reported by the Israeli daily Haaretz on 9 October.

[6] Extract from the Lebanese daily L'Orient-Le Jour, 18 June 2019.

[7]23rd ICC International Congress, Resolution on the international situation”,  International Review no. 164, 2019.

[8] Le Monde diplomatique, June 2020.

[9] Quote taken from Ch. Enderlin, "L'erreur stratégique d'Israël"Le Monde diplomatique, January 2024.

[10] Researcher T. Persico, in Ch. Enderlin, "L'erreur stratégique d'Israël"Le Monde diplomatique, January 2024.

[11] For further reflection on the reality of the rupture currently taking place within the working class, read the “Report on class struggle for the 25th Congress of the ICC”, International Review n°170, 2023.

[12] "Bilan & the Arab-Jewish conflict in Palestine" (reprinted from Bilan no. 30 and 31, 1936), International Review no. 110, 2002.



World-wide class struggle or capitalist devastation