The ongoing genocide against Palestinians in Gaza is exposing the murderous intent of the imperialist leaders of the U.S. and their partners in Israel. At the same time, indisputable U.S. and Israeli war crimes are bringing working-class and oppressed people around the globe, especially throughout the Arab world, closer together around a common concern for the people of Palestine.

Millions protest for Palestine in Yemen, Dec. 29, 2023.

The events have united resistance forces within occupied Palestine. Recently the Central Command of the Palestinian Forces Alliance held a meeting in Beirut, Lebanon, attended by representatives from Hamas, Islamic Jihad, the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine – General Command, the Popular Struggle Front, the Palestinian Liberation Front, the Vanguard for the Popular Liberation War – Lighting Forces and the Fatah Al-Intifada movement.

Since the Oct. 7 initiation of the al-Aqsa Flood — the organized operation of resistance sparked by 75 years of Israeli terrorism and military occupation — protesters have poured into the streets in countries across the Middle East and North Africa. There continue to be major demonstrations in Egypt, Iraq, Jordan, Lebanon, Morocco,  Oman, Qatar, and Tunisia expressing unconditional support for the struggle led by the Hamas Islamic Resistance Movement. Demonstrators burned U.S. and Israeli flags and chanted for their military defeats.

Meanwhile, the U.S. vetoed or watered down United Nations’ Security Council resolutions for a “humanitarian cease-fire,” proving Washington’s  heartless commitment to terrorizing the Palestinian people. The criminal actions of the U.S. and Israel have inspired people to organize major protests around the world. U.S. and Israeli credibility on the world scale has seriously waned.

Yemeni freedom fighters solidarity with Palestine

Ansar Allah, often pejoratively referred to as “Houthis,” is a collective unit that now controls much of Yemen. Ansar Allah started gaining power in 2014, and their support among the Yemeni people has expanded tremendously since. They are also influential among soldiers in the Yemeni Armed Forces (YAF).

In October 2023, YAF announced they would reroute and possibly attack any Israeli ships that would dare come near the shores of Yemen through the Red Sea. This message applied to any vessels carrying materials to and from Israel.

Yemeni resistance fighters have proudly taken credit for several drone and rocket attacks on cargo ships, which have hindered “business as usual” for the U.S. and Israel, causing a setback to their war effort. According to CNN, in late December 2023, a senior U.S. military official claimed Yemeni supporters of Ansar Allah have “launched at least 100 attacks against 14 different commercial and merchant vessels in the Red Sea over the past month.” (tinyurl.com/2k4hnb6j)

The Hamas Islamic Resistance Movement recently released a statement congratulating Ansar Allah and YAF for their actions, calling them “bold and brave.” Their declaration reaffirms that Ansar Allah “stands against the Zionist-American aggressors that have continued the war of genocide and massacres against all components of the human life of our Palestinian people over the past 64 days.” (Middle East Monitor, Dec. 10, 2023)

Ansar Allah originated as a political opposition force to Ali Abdullah Saleh, the Western-friendly president of Yemen from 1990 until 2012. Most of the opposition leaders were principled supporters of the Zaidi religious leader Hussein al-Houthi.

Prior to Saleh’s election, Yemen was divided into two countries — the Yemen Arab Republic of North Yemen and the People’s Democratic Republic of Yemen in the south, known as South Yemen. The latter was a socialist country from 1967 until 1990. South Yemen was the only country in the Middle East to have both a centrally planned economy and a Marxist-Leninist government.

Even though neither Ansar Allah nor YAF are ideologically Marxist, their organized resistance to the U.S. and Israel, as well as against Saudi Arabia’s ruling class, is encouraging to people familiar with Yemen’s history and anyone interested in seeking a liberated Palestine.

Hezbollah:  ally to Palestine

The people of Lebanon are also taking action to defend their Palestinian siblings. Many people in Lebanon are extremely familiar with Israeli terrorism, especially those who were alive during the summer of 2006 when Israel indiscriminately bombed Lebanon, particularly south Lebanon. For 34 days, Israel dropped bombs on several civilian locations, including the Rafic Hariri International Airport in Beirut.

A vital organization remembered for stepping up to defend the Lebanese people and helping to rebuild obliterated infrastructure was Hezbollah. Coincidentally, Hezbollah was Israel’s main target and scapegoat at the time. The U.S.-backed Zionist bombing campaign eventually backfired on Israel by popularizing Hezbollah. Militant members of the Lebanese Communist Party fought alongside Hezbollah members during the infamous 34-day war. In recent weeks, Hezbollah has expressed solidarity with Palestinians by launching rockets into northern Israel.

Hezbollah and Ansar Allah are both allies of Iran, and the membership of both organizations is chiefly Shia Muslim. To the detriment of the U.S. and Israel, this fact has not stopped their unwavering support towards the resistance movement inside Gaza, which is predominantly Sunni Muslims.

South Africa and ANC launch second battle against apartheid Israel

On Dec. 29, the government of South Africa filed a case with the International Court of Justice (ICJ) charging Israel with genocide. Citing the recent deaths of an estimated 21,500 Palestinians, South Africa described the criminal actions of Israel as “genocidal in character, because they are intended to bring about the destruction of a substantial part of the Palestinian national, racial and ethnic group.”

The complaint further asserts, “The acts in question include killing Palestinians in Gaza, causing them serious bodily and mental harm and inflicting on them conditions of life calculated to bring about their physical destruction,” (al-jazeera, Dec. 29, 2023)

In addition to these charges, the South African government has correctly accused Israel of being an “apartheid” state. This indictment is in reference to the white-supremacist, “apartheid” state that existed in South Africa from 1948 until 1994. The racist colonial system of that country was eventually defeated after decades of struggle by the African National Congress (ANC), culminating in a vote of 63% for Nelson Mandela in 1994. The ANC has retained electoral power since.

Resistance within the settler-colonial states

People in the U.S. and Israel are speaking out against the criminal decisions of the political leaders where they reside. In the U.S. several unions have called for an immediate “cease-fire” in Gaza. Among the national unions which have spoken up in defense of Palestine are the United Electrical Workers Union, the American Postal Workers Union, National Nurses United and the United Auto Workers. Many union locals have passed resolutions calling for a cease-fire.

Across the U.S. community members and even local government officials are urging city councils to pass “cease-fire” resolutions. This has happened in places such as Seattle, Chicago, and San Antonio, as well as smaller cities including Oakland, California, and Charleston, West Virginia, where many Palestinian-American residents and one council member are currently making that demand.

Statistics show that young people in the U.S. have become more sympathetic to Palestine. A Washington Post poll found that 28% of U.S. residents between the ages of 18 and 29 are sympathetic towards Palestine vs. 20% who support Israel. (Washington Post, Dec. 21, 2023). The passion of the younger U.S. generation, especially people of color and youth within the LGBTQ2+ community, over social justice issues such as migrant rights and Palestine could come as a challenge to the Democratic Party as they seek future votes.

The U.S. ruling class is taking note of the younger generation, and they are attacking institutions of higher learning and academia, as many students are pro-Palestinian. As part of their genocidal campaign in Gaza, U.S. war profiteers and Zionist propagandists are falsely claiming anyone who criticizes Israel, participates in a pro-Palestine protest or wears a keffiyeh is “antisemitic.”

Pro-Zionist elements of the bourgeoisie forced university presidents from Harvard, University of Pennsylvania and MIT — all women, including one African American — to attend a humiliating show trial in front of the House Education and Workforce Committee in early December of 2023. The three university presidents were asked to justify allowing students and professors to have space to show solidarity with Palestine.

Ironically, right-wing institutions such as the Heritage Foundation and Turning Point USA that are discouraging young people from attending colleges and universities are the same ones who defend “Holocaust denial” as “academic freedom” and get mad when anti-racist activists try to shut down hate speech.

There are also Israeli residents who have been speaking out against the settler-colonial, “apartheid” state in recent months. The current Israeli coalition government led by Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu and National Security Minister Itamar Ben-Gvir is the most reactionary and aggressively racist in all of Israel’s 75-year history.

There have been several protests in Israel calling for a cease-fire. One protest in early December 2023 was held outside military headquarters in Tel Aviv, and another one occurred outside one of Netanyahu’s estates. Many of the protests inside Israel were attacked by Zionist bigots.

Many young Israelis have refused to fight inside the murderous Israeli Occupation Forces since early October 2023. One case that has been receiving attention is that of 18-year-old Tal Mitnick, who was given a harsh 30-day jail sentence for refusing to fight inside the IOF.

Mitnik publicly declared, “I don’t believe that more violence will bring security,” stating he refuses to take part in a “revenge war.” (972mag.com, Dec. 28, 2023) There are also reports that a number of wounded IOF soldiers are refusing to allow visits from Netanyahu.

Around the world, people from oppressed communities, especially youth, are expressing solidarity with Palestinians living under occupation. Many people, especially young voters, see U.S. and Israeli political leaders as villainous representatives of white supremacy and racist genocide.

Otis Grotewohl

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Otis Grotewohl
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