Balancing Palestinian Resistance with Zionist Terror is a Cynical Imperialist Ploy Disorienting Even Self-Professed Marxists

Palestine Genocide

The new wave of Zionist extermination and ethnic cleansing of Palestinian people unleashed since October 7, 2023 has surpassed the heinous crimes already committed by Israel that preceded them. As the death toll from the month-long Israeli genocide in Gaza and West Bank is reaching 10000, more than 40 percent of it being that of children and even as many dead bodies are still under the rubble, the imperialist propaganda machine is still justifying Israel’s horrific crimes against humanity highlighting Hamas’s October 7 attack on Israel as the root cause. Meanwhile, with the full backing of US-NATO forces, Zionists are continuing mass murder of tens of thousands and wiping out the entire Palestinians from Gaza. The survivors of carpet bombing and those displaced, injured and disabled who are struggling for life are condemned to death on account of lack of food, medicine and demolition of even bare medical facilities for survival through incessant bombings over hospitals, relief and refugee camps in gross violation of all international covenants on war.

All well-meaning people know the horrific situation that prompted the multi-pronged attack, of course meticulously planned, on Israel’s military installations and cities by Hamas on October 7, 2023. It was not an overnight development but the logical continuation of at least 75 years of systematic Zionist horror unleashed on the Palestinians with the backing of US-EU imperialist powers. Hamas’ resistance was in the context of the escalation in Israeli police raids and incessant attacks on the Palestinians on a daily basis resulting in the biggest death toll and devastation of Palestinian people in recent years. In spite of that, the US-EU imperialists who are the closest allies of fascist Netanyahu regime, along with their lackeys in Middle East, were silent on this Zionist criminality. The retaliation and resistance, the biggest in several decades on the part of Hamas, as a national liberation organization, with its declared objective of eliminating Zionist occupation took place in this context. Using this as an opportunity, as the world is witnessing, the Zionists, in the guise of retaliation against Hamas, and with the backing of their imperialist master, the US, have unleashed a genocide of hitherto unknown proportions, the details of which are already before us.

Now, very revealingly, the US-NATO allies of Netanyahu have come forward justifying Zionist aggression in the guise of “self-defence”, while denying such a right to the Palestinians who are fighting for their right of self-determination and liberation from Zionist occupation which the Anglo-Saxon imperialists have superimposed over the Palestinians, as part of the geopolitical agenda of postwar neocolonialism. While even the UN, which over the years has been like a toothless bystander on crucial international issues, with majority support has come forward a Resolution for an immediate ceasefire and halt to the war crimes committed by Israel in Gaza, both the imperialists and their junior partners like the fascist Indian regime and other imperialist lackeys have dissociated from that Resolution, demanding a condemnation of Hamas, blaming the latter and altogether whitewashing Israeli crimes against humanity. Imperialist-Zionist centres have gone to the extent of even characterising Hamas’s attack as the biggest attack on Jews since the ‘holocaust’. Their intentions are two: one, to hide the guilt over the EU-US role in facilitating Hitler’s holocaust; two, to grant Israel a free licence to massacre Palestinians, which the Zionists have been regularly doing since 1948. After all, it is a historical fact that both EU-US imperialists were closing their doors even to those Jews who were seeking asylum to escape Nazi holocaust. All well-meaning people fully know that the superimposition of Israel over the Palestinians was an imperialist conspiracy to atone for the horrific sins committed on the Jews including the holocaust by Nazis who were part of European imperialism.

Unfortunately, in continuation of this far-right neofascist approach of the US-EU imperialists, a politically neutral or “centrist” position of equating Hamas with Zionism is also visible among a section of the degenerated and depoliticised Communists too. Obviously, the so called “political neutrality” or “centrism” is against the interests of the toiling and oppressed peoples, and always serves the ruling classes. At the same time, this reactionary trend which is prominent especially among a wide spectrum of depoliticised European Left today has also led to acute inner-party differences in a number of Communist and Workers’ parties in many European countries such as UK, France and Spain. However, more striking is the Euro-centric approach of some self-professed revolutionary Communist parties themselves becoming proponents of this apologetic and centrist position of balancing Palestinian resistance with Zionist horror! A few among them are despicably along the same wavelength as imperialist – Zionist Islamophobic evil axis branding Hamas a “fascist” and ‘terrorist” organisation in their documents!

Hence situating Hamas in the proper historical perspective has also become one of the crucial tasks connected with Palestine question at this critical juncture. Take, for instance, the branding of Hamas as “fascist”, “terrorist” and “Islamic Jihadist” and thereby equating it with ISIS (ISIL), a view held by many ranging from Imperialist-Zionist camp at one extreme to Eurocentric, radical Left sections at another. Here, some brief observations are essential. First, and to be precise, according to the generally accepted understanding of fascism including its indispensable roots in corporate capital and state power, Hamas is difficult to be categorised as ‘fascist’, and the concept ‘fascism’ has its specific content, and is not a category that covers all sins.

Secondly, it is highly imperative on the part of the political Left to make a clear-cut line of demarcation between ‘terrorism’ and ‘resistance struggle’ based on an objective evaluation of the latter according the concrete situation. This is not the context for going in to the historical context including the failures of PLO that facilitated the origin and development of Hamas as a bourgeois nationalist “resistance movement” including its inherent weaknesses. However, even after its winning of the 2006 Palestinian legislative election gaining a large majority of seats in the Palestinian Parliament, and even after the 2017 redrafting of its Charter, those who still brand Hamas as “terrorist” and club it with ISIS, are likely to have other agenda in conformity with Islamophobic undertones.

For instance, the 42-Article Hamas Document of 2007, while resolutely rejecting the “Zionist project”, among other things, says: “6. The Palestinian people are one people, made up of all Palestinians, inside and outside of Palestine, irrespective of their religion, culture, or political affiliation.” In another context Hamas states its policy thus: “Hamas affirms that its conflict is with the Zionist project not with the Jews because of their religion. Hamas does not wage a struggle against the Jews because they are Jewish but wages a struggle against the Zionists who occupy Palestine. Yet, it is the Zionists who constantly identify Judaism and the Jews with their own colonial project and illegal entity.” In fact, the new Program of Hamas had also softened its stance on Israel by accepting the idea of a Palestinian state in territories occupied by Israel in the six-day war of 1967. It said: “Hamas advocates the liberation of all of Palestine but is ready to support the state on 1967 borders without recognising Israel or ceding any rights.” 

If one reads between the lines, it becomes very clear that Hamas was not seeking war with the Jewish people, but against Zionism and its relentless occupation of Palestine. Its unwavering rejection of Zionism and uncompromising position on full and complete independence of Palestine are very clear. To quote again from Hamas: “Hamas rejects any alternative to the full and complete liberation of Palestine, from the river to the sea. However, without compromising its rejection of the Zionist entity and without relinquishing any Palestinian rights, Hamas considers the establishment of a fully sovereign and independent Palestinian state, with Jerusalem as its capital along the lines of the 4th of June 1967, with the return of the refugees and the displaced to their homes from which they were expelled, to be a formula of national consensus.”

In the same vein, as already stated, Hamas has clearly made a distinction between Jews or Judaism and modern Zionism. Hamas said that its fight was against the “racist, aggressive, colonial and expansionist” Zionist project, but not against Judaism or Jews. This is not a hollow statement. In areas of Gaza controlled by Hamas, Arabs, Christians, Jews and people of all religious denominations lead a secular, peaceful and friendly life. In the 2017 version of its charter, Hamas claimed to reject the “persecution of any human being or the undermining of his or her rights on nationalist, religious or sectarian grounds.” However, US-EU imperialists and their Islamophobic corporate media continue with their propaganda blitzkrieg demonising Hamas as “terrorist”, “fascist” and “Jihadist” and at the same continue with whitewashing the Zionist terror in the guise of its self-defence.

The upshot of the argument is straight: The declared position of Hamas offers immense scope for dialogue and deliberations. And it should be welcomed by the progressive-democratic forces and oppressed peoples of the world. For, it is an objective historical fact that the very inception of Israel in 1948 was part of a Zionist project designed and implemented by the Anglo-Saxon imperialists as an inalienable component of postwar neocolonialism. Since then what takes place is a steady and systematic extermination and displacement of Palestinians, paving the way for the continuous expansion of the Zionist project. Still the imperialists, especially the US for whom Zionist Israel is a neocolonial outpost in the Middle East, whitewashing of Zionist horror and branding Hamas that fight for Palestine liberation as “terrorist”, are essential for their geopolitical objectives in Middle East with the support of lackey regimes there.

In this context, as already mentioned, balancing Hamas’ resistance struggle with Zionist horror by the depoliticised Euro-centric ‘Marxists’ is all the more condemnable. Characterisation of Hamas as anti-Semitic and equating it with ISIS, on the one hand, is directly linked with Islamophobia, but on the other, it emanates from their ideological bankruptcy to comprehend the historical fact that anti-Semitism is the brainchild of imperialist-Zionist axis and that its roots lay deep in Europe and not in Palestine or with the Arab people. When it comes to Palestine question in particular and Middle East in general, on account of their Eurocentrism, many Left sections fall in to the trap of “political neutrality” and “centrism” which, as is known to all progressive-democratic forces, favour the oppressors and the ruling system and are directly targeted against the oppressed and exploited. It is the birth-right of the oppressed to resist and throw away oppression by all means and it is urgent on the part of all progressive-democratic forces to stand in solidarity with the oppressed without falling into the trap of neutrality. Hence it is the immediate task of the working and oppressed peoples of the world to stand in solidarity with the Palestinian people with an ideological clarity on the complexities of the resistance against Zionism and beware not to fall into the trap of balancing resistance with oppression set by Eurocentric apologists.  

P J James is General Secretary, CPI (ML) Red Star

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