This speech was delivered by Socialist Equality Party (US) National Secretary Joseph Kishore Thursday at Wayne State University during a rally jointly sponsored by the International Youth and Students for Social Equality and Students for Justice in Palestine.
What is happening in Gaza now is a genocide. Let us not mince words. A population of more than two million people is being systematically bombed, murdered, starved, deprived of medical care and driven from their homes.
Each day there are new atrocities, new war crimes. This week, the bombing of the Jabaliya refugee camp, for three days in a row, has killed nearly 200 people.
Today, IDF planes carried out another bombing, of the Bureij refugee camp. The camp is located south of the evacuation line, exposing the lie that Palestinians evacuating the north would be “safe.” The Israeli military also targeted a UN school that is housing thousands of refugees and children, including many orphans, with white phosphorus weapons that are illegal under international law.
The death toll is now over 9,000, including nearly 3,700 children and 2,300 women. Every 10 minutes, a child in Palestine is murdered. Since October 7, more than 25,000 tons of explosives have been dropped on the Gaza Strip, which has an area approximately equal to the city of Detroit, 141 square miles. 25,000 tons is also approximately double the power of the atomic bomb dropped by the United States on Hiroshima.
This monstrous crime is being carried out before the eyes of the whole world. Its perpetrators include not only the Netanyahu government and the fascists that comprise it, but the Biden administration and all the governments of the US-NATO axis.
We indict Biden for war crimes. The Biden administration has rejected a ceasefire. It has declared that there are no “red lines” for Israel’s actions. It has said that it is placing “no conditions” on Israel’s use of American weaponry. It is demanding $105 billion to finance Israel’s genocide and the US-NATO war against Russia.
The Al-Ahli Arab Hospital is bombed, killing 500, and Biden rushes to Tel Aviv the next day to embrace Netanyahu and shake his hand. Tomorrow, in the wake of the bombing of Jabaliya, Secretary of State Antony Blinken is traveling to Tel Aviv to declare the United States’ full support for Israel.
If there are to be prosecutions for war crimes and violations of international law, and there must be, Biden and Blinken, along with Sunak, Macron, Scholz, Meloni and other leaders of the US-NATO axis, must stand on the dock next to Netanyahu.
Let this be the end for all time to any talk that the American military, in any part of the world, is promoting “human rights,” is defending “democracy.”
For three decades, American imperialism has waged one war after the next, against Yugoslavia, Iraq, Afghanistan, Libya, Syria, all justified on the basis of lies. The US-NATO proxy war against Russia in Ukraine and the war in Gaza are two elements of an expanding global war. This is not just a conflict between nation states. As the genocide in Gaza demonstrates, it is a war against all opposition to unrestrained imperialist domination.
Workers and youth are not standing by and watching this happen. Throughout the world, millions have taken to the streets to denounce this genocide. These protests have involved workers and young people of every race, nationality, religion and ethnicity. Many Jewish people have participated, denouncing the Netanyahu government and rejecting the foul slander that opposing Israel’s genocide is antisemitic.
Those who are gathered here today speak for the millions, the tens of millions, the hundreds of millions all around the world who are opposed to Israel’s actions and the broader imperialist war of which it is a part. Protests like this must be held in every city, on every college campus, in every country in the world.
But we must understand that we are fighting not only the Netanyahu government, but American imperialism, the US-NATO axis. We are fighting against a capitalist ruling elite that is waging war here at home as it is waging war abroad.
The American government is controlled by two parties, which both represent the interests of the rich. The Republicans are controlled by fascists who, under the leadership of Trump, attempted to overturn the Constitution and establish a dictatorship. But the Democratic Party is prosecuting this war. The Biden administration is supporting this genocide. All those who insisted that it is necessary to support the Democratic Party as the “lesser evil,” all those who claimed that the Democratic Party can be reformed, stand exposed. This “lesser evil” is an accomplice to genocide in Gaza.
Our aim must not be to pressure the perpetrators and accomplices of genocide, the capitalist states in the US-NATO axis. We must instead turn to the working class, that social force that produces all of society’s wealth. The war is a war on the working class, and it is the working class that must lead the fight against it.
This includes the workers in Israel and throughout the Middle East. The atrocity in Gaza has also exposed the bankruptcy of the fictitious “two-state” solution. It proves, if there was ever any doubt, that the existence of an apartheid state is only possible on the basis of genocide. The interests of Arab workers, and the interests of Jewish workers, can be secured only through the dissolution of the existing state of Israel and its replacement by a multinational state, with full democratic and social rights for Jews and Arabs, as part of a socialist federation of the Middle East.
The ruling class is fearful. The level of lies in the media corresponds with the level of fear. They resort to propaganda and repression—including the outrageous allegations of antisemitism from people supporting outright Nazis in Ukraine—because they know that the masses of the world’s population, the working class, are against their criminal actions. But this opposition must be mobilized and politically directed.
The Socialist Equality Party and the International Youth and Students for Social Equality support working class action to stop the shipment of any items to Israel that could have any conceivable military use. The massive social power of the international working class must be mobilized in a political general strike, to shut down production and stop this genocide.
We urge all of you here to organize delegations to go to the factories, to go to the workplaces, to go to the high schools, to connect the fight against Israel’s genocide to the developing struggles of workers all over the world against inequality and exploitation.
What we are witnessing in Gaza is imperialist and capitalist barbarism in its most brutal form. It can be stopped through the movement of masses of workers throughout the world. Stop the genocide in Gaza! No to imperialist war! Break with the Democrats and Republicans! End inequality and capitalist exploitation! For social equality, for socialism! Stop the genocide in Gaza, mobilize the working class!
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