On Antisemitism & the Palestinian Struggle

I read this weekend of an unfortunate incident which took place at a “March for Palestine” demonstration in Louisville on May 23. A contingent from the Socialist Workers Party (SWP) was attacked and their signs destroyed because in addition to calling for recognition of a sovereign, contiguous Palestinian state they also called for recognition of Israel. They were accused of being anti-Palestinian because they didn’t call for Israel’s destruction.

The reality is that Israel has existed now for nearly 75 years. At this point it’s not going away and it would be a blow to the international working class if it did.

Antisemitism is a poison employed internationally by people on both the right and the left. This strikes me as clear reason why Israel must be defended as a haven for Jews seeking refuge — even as actions of the Israeli government must be protested when they violate the rights and dignity of Palestinians. To call for the destruction of Israel in the name of the Palestinians divides people and contributes to continued Palestinian oppression. The firing of missiles into Israel by Hamas doesn’t help either and it certainly doesn’t make Palestinians safer. Israel will obviously respond as it did. When the firing stops, what has been accomplished? Palestinian hardship and suffering is all the more intense.

Thousands of Jews and Palestinians work together side by side in peace in Israel. They know each other as fellow workers — and as friends. This demonstrates that the ultimate solution for peace is for the working class, Jews and Palestinians together, to organize in recognition of their common needs. They each need a state, a home, that they can call their own. This isn’t rocket science, but the capitalist rulers of Israel and the reactionary leaders of Hamas are obstacles in the way.

All comments are welcome. I only ask that we remain civil and respectful of one another. If you clicked over from Facebook, please comment here rather than back there.

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