Palestine and the role of the global working class

Grevatt is a retired Stellantis (formerly Chrysler) worker who served on the executive boards of UAW Locals 122 and 869. This is from her message to the International Assembly against Imperialism in Solidarity with Palestine, on Jan. 21, in New York City. 

Understanding imperialism is so critical at this moment, as our class siblings in Palestine are waging a relentless struggle against Zionism, settler colonialism, racism — and capitalist imperialism, the root cause of all these evil oppressions.

Lenin was an anti-imperialist to the core, in every bone of his body. He explained that imperialism was, in his day, the highest stage of capitalism. He wanted to eliminate capitalism and imperialism altogether — not just give them a phony “human face.” Toward this end, Lenin was a revolutionary Marxist, one who not only embraced the theories of Marx, but who advanced the science of Marxism. 

Lenin fought an ideological struggle to defend revolutionary Marxism at a time when some so-called “Marxists” were revising Marxism and suggesting that the workers’ revolution was no longer a valid goal. Lenin fought these “revisionists” in a furious fashion.

Lenin’s view of the working class is so important today, with so many in our global class struggling just to make ends meet, especially workers of color, here and in the Global South. And capitalism is threatening the world’s inhabitants with endless war and climate catastrophe.

There’s an old union slogan: “An injury to one is an injury to all.” The global working class has an obligation to the people of Palestine: Build a great wall of solidarity. Make it strong. Make a thick wall and a high wall, too high for imperialism to knock over. Multiply solidarity with Palestine in the name of the working class. 

We must use our power as workers, as the ones who create all of the wealth in society, to help the Palestinians bring down the Zionist apartheid state — and ultimately bring down the whole imperialist system behind it. 

That’s what an alliance of over 30 Palestinian unions have asked us to do. A significant number of national, regional and local labor organizations have taken a big first step. They have called for a permanent ceasefire. That is not enough, not by a long shot, but it’s something we can build on.

We again need to revive and elevate a fundamental principle of revolutionary Marxism-Leninism — that the working class IS a revolutionary class. It is THE revolutionary class whose historic mission is to bring about the downfall of the capitalist system of exploitation — and by doing so usher in a whole new phase of human development.

Free, free Palestine!

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