42 years of the PFLP: Time for a new political era of resistance and national liberation

The following statement is from the website of the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, a Marxist-Leninist organization that has now been waging armed struggle against Imperialism, Zionism, and Arab reaction, and for socialism and national liberation, for 42 years. They fight for a singular, secular Palestinian state in all of historic Palestine. The PFLP’s General Secretary, Ahmad Sa’adat, is imprisoned by Israel.

PFLP statement on 42nd anniversary: Time for a new political era of resistance and national liberation

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine stands today, 42 years from its founding on December 11, 1967. The PFLP was founded in response to the defeat of regimes and ideologies in the June 1967 war, and took action to initiate resistance in all forms on a strategic, long-term basis, mobilize the masses of the Palestinian Arab people to fight, neutralize the technological advantage of the occupation war machines through lightning attacks, and defeat the enemy and the entire Zionist and imperialist colonial scheme.

Looking at the anniversary of the founding of our Front, it was a culmination of the historic experience of our people throughout generations of confrontation of successive colonialist and Zionist attacks. It was an extension of this existing struggle and a quantitatively new expression that transformed and upgraded the movement, intellectually, politically and organizationally, growing from the glorious experience of the Arab Nationalist Movement, led by the founder of the ANM and the PFLP, Comrade Dr. George Habash.

This breakthrough came as an expression of the objective necessity to represent the political identity of the Palestinian Arab people and promote a substantive and militant alliance basd on the organic unity of the struggle of our Palestinian people and the peoples of the Arab nation for national and social liberation, led by social forces historically capable of leading the revolutionary struggle and the liberation movement, until the achievement of the victory of our people and our nation, based on the accumulated experience of struggle and the bitter lessons that emerged from the experience of political feudalism, religious leaders and authoritarian and dictatorial regimes.

At the time when the Arab regimes were reeling under the weight of shame and defeat, the forces of the Palestinian revolution were emerging, providing hope and confidence to the Palestinian and Arab masses hungry for steadfastness and resistance to restore our land and our rights and take the road of freedom, progress and unity. The founding of the Front is not only a key momemt for the Palestinian and Arab struggle only or its own resistance forces, but a step forward in the national, democratic and social dimensions of the progressive international popular struggle against imperialism and Zionism, in developing the Palestine Liberation Organization and the Palestinian revolution. The PFLP made clear that the national struggle is an integral part of the struggle against reactionary Arab forces, international Zionism and imperialism, and for liberation, justice, progress and peace.

This annivrsary of the founding of the Front coms at a moment of national crisis, when the occupation’s tyranny attacks all aspects of the lives of the Palestinian people and their struggle, through aggression, murder and war crimes, occupation and criminal siege of the Gaza Strip and the West Bank of Palestine, as it imprisons thousands of prisoners of freedom behind bars, attempts a frenzied conversion of the holy city of Jerusalem in an attempt to change its Arab and Muslim character, spreads settlements, builds the wall of annexation, isolation and displacement, and enhances its firmly entrenched policies of racism and extremism in a rapid and intense attack in order to exploit the conditions to attempt to kill and bury the Palestinian national struggle in its entirety. It seeks to replace the Palestinian national project with the so-called “state with temporary (permanent) borders,” the liquidation of the Palestinian cause and the constants and rights of our people, amid the dictatorship and disabled ‘democracy’ of the Arab countries, the silence of the official Arab order, continued normalization of shame between reactionary regimes and the occupying power, and the collusion, deception, absolute and blind aggression and hypocrisy of the United States, aided and abetted by the European Union’s hypocrisy, visible as many countries refused to vote for the Goldstone report, revealing their subservience to Washington’s power and Zionist pressure.

At the same time, our internal Palestinian situation is beset by exclusivity, quotas and acquisitiveness, internal fighting, military solutions, the violations of public freedoms, civil rights and the rule of law, further entrenching the political and geographic divide and damaging Palestinian social fabric and the traditions, values, structures, and national institutions of our people. This has happened particularly in light of the lack of political will on both sides of the split to restore unity and give priority to the primary contradiction with the occupation and the supreme national interest of the Palestinian people. It has become apparent that the emergence of layers of bureaucracy and hierarchy and parasitic power in the authority find their selfish interests in the status quo, thus opening the door wide for the occupation to continue its occupation and dispossession of land and violation of Palestinian rights and for international silence and complicity, shirking all political, legal and ethical responsibilities to protect the Palestinian people. All of this takes place under the cover of a darkness called “calm and security coordination,” on the basis of the Madrid-Oslo policies of disaster and betrayal, and a foundation of so-called “negotiations.”

On the 42nd anniversary of its founding, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine declares:

* An official announcement must be made of the utter failure of the ‘negotiations’ and the entire Oslo process, the reliance on the United States, the so-called ‘roadmap’ and the Annapolis conference process. The end of this process comes as no surprise to many and was clear long ago to those who do not run away from facing reality. It is the responsibility of the Palestinian leadership to undertake a complete and comprehensive review of its policies, including declaring an end to the phase of “transitional self-rule” and related Palestinian “commitments” as a framework for reference and decision making and return instead to the United Nations, including the principles of international protection for our people and compelling Israel to impelement international law and U.N. resolutions, emphasizing the rights of our people to resist to end the occupation and the settlements, release our prisoners and achieve our rights to national independence, self-determination and return.

* We call for a National Dialogue Committee composed of the leaders of the national and Islamic forces, the Executive Committee of the PLO, and national leaders, to meet urgently to resume national dialogue and national reconcilation on the basis of the Cairo Declaration and the Prisoners’ Document and develop mechanisms for implementation and adoption of a national strategy based on national unity.

*The Palestinian national house must be activated through the rebuilding of the Palestine Liberation Organization to include the entire spectrum of national political forces, on the basis of democratic elections through proportional representation in Palestine and abroad. This is a central national issue and emergency that cannot be postponed.

*We demand the implementation of the Prisoners’ Document, including establishing a united resistance front, strengthening the resistance to occupation and building our national front on the basis of our national consensus for independent state with its capital in Jerusalem, self-detemination, and return.

*The rules of democratic elections and national partnership, including at presidential, legislative, and local elections, trade unions and popular federations, must be respected in order to preserve and promote political and social democracy in line with our Palestinian national cause and consensus. The only way to protect our cause and the Palestine Liberation Organization as the sole legitimate representative of the Palestinian people is through truly democratic processes that reflect our united struggle and our objectives as a people.

*We call for the immediate release of all political prisoners and detainees in the West Bank and Gaza Strip, and we reject the use of internal violence to address matters of procedures, and we call upon all to take up the fight against corruption, to support the rule of law and public freedoms, and to address the rampant unemployment, poverty and hunger faced by our people. We must protect the economic and social development of our people and the families of martyrs, prisoners and wounded in Palestine and in the camps and areas of exile.

*We call upon our Arab brothers on a popular and official level to carry out their responsibilities to their cause, as well as the democratic forces of the world, the allies and friends of our people to continue their actions in defense of our people. We call for an international conference under the auspicies of the United Nations to implement the existing resolutions of international legitimacy as an alternative approach to the utterly failed and damaging ‘negotiations’ under the authority of the United States, and for international support for the struggle of the Palestinian people for self-determination and return, and to hold Israel accountable and force it to implement international law and prosecute its officials for war crimes.

The Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine is struggling to achieve the objectives of our people to return, to self-determination, and an independent state with its capital in Jerusalem, and affirms its commitment to our strategic goal – the establishment of a democratic state on all of the national soil of Palestine where all enjoy equal rights without discrimination on the basis of race, gender, sex or religion.

The Popular Front, recognizing the nature of the stage as that of national liberation and democratic struggle, expresses its renewed determination on this occasion to build a strong, militant left and democratic program that emphasizes the historical role of unity around the Palestinian national constants, uphold the PLO and the program of national liberation, and to renew the promise to fulfill the blood of the martyrs and the objectives for which they died. The PFLP pledges to continue the resistance, which has proven its effectiveness on the ground in Iraq, Palestine and Lebanon and rubbed the nose of the Zionist and American occupations in the dirt and shook their war machine’s ability to rain destruction upon us, and it affirms that it will continue to make sacrifices in order to end the division and restore internal democracy and national unity as the law of national liberation and a necessity for victory and the achievement of our national aspirations and objectives.

On this anniversary, dear to the activists and freedm fighters of our nation and our people, we salute with gratitude and stand with reverence and pride before the victories, the martyrs, and the sacrifices of our people, the comrades and leaders of our party and the national struggle, led by the martyrs, the hero, founder and leader, Dr. George Habash, Al-Hakim, and the former General Secretary, Comrade Leader Abu Ali Mustafa, the heroes and leaders, Wadie Haddad, Ghassan Kanafani, Guevara Gaza, Shadia Abu Ghazaleh, Taghreed Botmeh, Maha Nassar, and the leaders and martyrs of the Palestinian revolution, Abu Ammar, Dr. Haidar Abdel-Shafi, Sheikh Yassin, Fathi Shikaki, Bashir al-Barghouthi, Omar al-Qassim, Abdul Rahim Ahmad, Talaat Yacoub, Abu Abbas, Naji al-Ali, and Mahmoud Darwish, and all the martyrs. We salute with steadfastness and pride all of the prisoners, in the forefront the national leader and the General Secretary of the Front, Comrade Ahmad Sa’adat, brothers and leaders, Marwan Barghouthi and Sheikh Hassan Youssef, all of the former prisoners, and the thousands of prisoners who struggle for victory every day and hold to their strong and determined will confronting the whips of the jailer, the executioner and the terrorist of the occupation.

Long live the glorious memory of the founding of the Front!

Glory and eternity to the martyrs…And freedom for the prisoners!

Defeat to the occupation, its masters and its cronies!

Victory for our people and our nation!

Political Bureau
Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine
December 11, 2009

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