Summary: On several tendencies on the left, especially in Iran and the diaspora — Editors
In this article, I want to discuss some of the implications of the Statement of the Steering Committee of the International Marxist-Humanist Organization, “The Middle East and the World After October 7, and Israel’s War on Palestine,” issued October 15, 2023.
I hope the comments below will help to clarify our position.
Today, I see three tendencies regarding today’s war, or rather, another round of the Israeli war machine for the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian people in Gaza.
Those three tendencies as:
- Those who support Israel.
- Those who support Hamas without any critique of their actions.
- A third tendency rejects Israel’s criminal state and Hamas’s Islamic fundamentalist organization while supporting the Palestinian people and their self-determination as we have done. But many of those who lean towards the third tendency believe that both sides are equally responsible.
Among the Iranian left, because of their opposition to the Iranian Islamist regime, many lean towards a “two side-ism” position with slogans like, “No to Islamic terrorism and no to state terrorism.” This is a convenient position for some to take since they can stay neutral and hope everything goes well for the people of Palestine!
Today, two-state solutions are dead and buried, by Israel. For them, Palestinians are not human.
In my view, the Israeli state and Hamas are not the same. The rise of Hamas is a by-product of Israeli reactionaries and their apartheid policy that has been rejecting Palestinians’ claim for self-determination. Close to 6 million Palestinians have been driven out of the country since 1948. Israeli right-wing terrorists carried out a series of massacres against Palestinians, they targeted innocent people including children, and used policies of “ethnic cleansing” to establish a Jewish state “free of Palestinians.” Today’s Islamist terrorism in Gaza is a direct by-product of Israel’s long-standing policies against the Palestinian people. Thus far, in Israel’s recent massacre, there have been almost 5,000 Palestinians killed (among them 2,000 children).
The Israeli state is warning millions of Palestinian people in Gaza that everyone who chooses not to evacuate from the north of the strip to the south of Wadi Gaza might be considered a partner of the terrorist organization.
What does ethnic cleansing look like? Some Palestinian people believe that if we must die it’s better to be in their homes, rather than in tents without any food, water, electricity, fuel, and medical supplies.
Bombing children is not self-defense. To be sure, I condemn the tactics and reactionary ideas of Hamas, but in my view, those who are oppressed have the right to defend themselves and need to fight against their oppressors.
For these reasons, I hold that our Statement expresses our responsibility as an organization to defend 2.3 million Palestinian residents against Israel.
I also recall that forty-one years ago Raya Dunayevskaya wrote her 1982 article on “Israel’s genocidal invasion of Lebanon.” At the time, we were witnessing, she also wrote, how Israel “transformed into opposite from 1947-48 exodus into the Imperialistic state-capitalist Israel.” Since then, we witnessed a lot more genocidal actions by Israel’s Apartheid reactionary state.
This needs to stop.
In my view, our Statement on today’s war gives us a direction for the IMHO Organization. We cannot stand outside the struggle and hope for things to get better.