Israel has added another offense to its long roster of crimes by attacking Lebanon. It is conducting an air war that intentionally targets civilians; even refugees fleeing in their cars are killed. Israel is systematically destroying the infrastructure of southern Lebanon by targeting people’s basic needs – apartment buildings, warehouses full of food, gas stations, powers plants, bridges and roads. Almost a million people have been driven from their homes. Now Israeli ground troops have crossed the border into Lebanon.
Right now Israel is carrying out a war on the Arab peoples on two fronts. Lebanon is one and Palestine – particularly Gaza – is the other. The Israeli authorities have kidnapped Palestinian legislators, cabinet ministers and mayors. No one is safe from Israel’s ceaseless shelling. Not old folks in their homes or children by the seashore. Occupied Palestine has been turned into an open-air prison. The medical system is in shambles and the hand of hunger is touching the majority of families. On one day, July 26, the Israeli authorities killed at least 23 people.
None of this would be possible without the complicity of the United States government. Israel is a client state, created on stolen land and existing on borrowed time. Israel is a country brought into being by Western imperialism, and it is armed and financed by the U.S. The Bush administration is doing much more than ‘giving a green light’ to these attacks. In fact the two parties have arrived at of crude division of labor. American diplomats are charged with preventing a ceasefire while American-made bombs and artillery rounds are being rushed to the Israeli army. The Israelis’ role is to carry out the actual bloodletting and murder of women and children.
The United States has built an empire for the purpose enriching the corporate elite by looting the land, labor and natural resources of others. Israel serves as a thuggish enforcer of this empire in the Middle East.
At this point it should be clear to all that full-scale war unleashed in Gaza and Lebanon has little to do with that the capture of a few Israeli soldiers by Lebanese and Palestinian resistance forces. According to a number of press accounts, active planning for the invasion of Lebanon began five years ago.
To understand what Bush and the Israeli authorities are doing, several important factors need to be kept in mind. First, a profound radicalization of the broad masses of people is unfolding across the Middle East and Israel is in a position of relative weakness. Hezbollah defeated Israel and forced it leave south Lebanon in 1999. The Palestinian resistance is strong and broad based. Additionally, Israel’s main backers, the rulers of the United States, are facing a defeat of historic proportions in Iraq. The U.S. government and its outpost in Israel are trying to break out of the cycle of defeat and decline though the war on Lebanon. The have lifted a rock that will end up on their feet.
Both the Lebanese and Palestinian resistance deserve the support of peace movement, progressives in general and all people of goodwill. The men and women who are giving their lives to resist Israeli/U.S. aggression represent what is best in humanity: a willingness to sacrifice for the collective good, a commitment on the part of the oppressed and exploited to achieve national freedom and a determination in the face of adversity to right a long history of wrongs. The best way we can support these movements for justice is to unite all who can be united to end the occupations of Palestine and Lebanon.
If a movement weakens imperialism it should be supported. No one wants to live under the shadow of an empire – that’s a matter of fair play and justice. Also, whatever weakens the rich and powerful who rule the United States is good for us, the working and oppressed people who live here.
The people of Lebanon and Palestine are heroes. They are farmers and grandparents, moms and factory workers, scholars and people from all walks of live who are stepping on to the stage of world history. They know what hell is like and have decided to destroy it. They deserve solidarity and support of the American people.
U.S. out of the Middle East!
End all aid to Israel!
The Arab peoples are sure to win!