Nov 092023

After over three weeks of bloody conflict and the looming spectre of a genocide in Gaza, the Communist Party of Canada reaffirms its support for the Palestinian people and their right to resistance recognized under international law. We condemn Israel and its Zionist policy of violent colonization, occupation, and apartheid as the primary driver of this catastrophe that has claimed the lives of over 10,000 people, with 70% being women and children.

For Netanyahu and the far-right Israeli government, the goal is clear: to eliminate Palestine as a potential state and as a nation, or even to eliminate the Palestinians themselves. The evidence can be seen by the pressure on Egypt to open the Sinai borders and play host to the population of Gaza without the right of return. 

Faced with a conflict that could quickly engulf the entire region, we demand an immediate ceasefire, starting with Israel. In this regard, we condemn Western imperialist countries, including Canada and the United States, for refusing to support a ceasefire motion during the United Nations General Assembly, while the vast majority of countries voted in favor. Furthermore, instead of seeking a negotiated solution to the conflict, the United States responded by sending two aircraft carriers, including the world’s largest, to just off the coast of the Middle East. Under NATO’s initiative, Cyprus has been requisitioned as an operational base where various Alliance countries coordinate under the guise of humanitarian operations. Canada is also involved, deploying elite soldiers. We know all too well that the real purpose of such a presence is to stand by in case of a potential Israeli military overreach in its ground offensive in Gaza.

While Israel carries out massacres, imperialist governments use the pretext that Hamas fired the first shots on October 7th. They use this as an opportunity to label any action, demonstration, or organization in solidarity with Palestine as supporting terrorism, as if Palestinian solidarity is represented by a single organization. Those who once claimed that Nelson Mandela and the ANC were terrorists are the same ones who prevent various solidarity demonstrations with Palestine and trade unionists, progressives, and students here and elsewhere in the world.

As Communists, we have no illusions about the political agenda or the origins of Hamas, let alone its historical ties to Israel. However, we refuse to reduce Palestinian resistance to this reactionary organization. Also, it must be clearly stated that there is no fair comparison of the crimes of Hamas with those of the Israeli army, which has carried out massacres of Palestinians since 1948, starting with the Deir Yassin massacre and the Plan Dalet.

Let it be clear: the Palestinian people’s struggle against Israel is not based on ethnicity, religion, or even strictly nationality. It is, in fact, a struggle rooted in the universal aspirations of people and the working class worldwide against exploitative, barbaric, and murderous imperialism. The massive participation in recent solidarity demonstrations in Canada and throughout North America is proof of this.

This is precisely what the ruling class fears, which is why they are vehemently anti-Palestinian. The mobilization around an international issue demonstrates that workers, youth, and the masses understand the importance of international solidarity.

The victory of the Palestinian people can only be achieved if the world’s peoples and workers intensify their mobilization, not only in solidarity with Palestine but also directed against Western imperialist countries, without which Israeli Zionism could not exist. These countries must be compelled to consider a just and lasting diplomatic resolution to this struggle that has lasted for over 75 years. Imperialists want war because it is profitable and this can only be stopped by a balance of forces that keeps the corporate monopolies in check. For example, crude oil prices have increased by 4.7% (Brent) and 4.5% (US). While bullets fly and bombs fall, profits rise.

That is why we welcome the courageous stance of a growing number of trade unions, and democratic and popular organizations in support of Palestine. However, we cannot stop there since the Palestinian people’s struggle is also our struggle. We urge all well-intentioned individuals, democrats, and peace advocates to engage in this battle within their unions, neighborhoods, and educational institutions, including writing letters to the editor (to counter disgusting misinformation campaigns), making calls and taking other actions directed at elected representatives, organizing rallies, protests, sit-ins, and other actions, distributing leaflets, putting up posters, or adopting solidarity resolutions within our associations and unions. Nothing should be overlooked including putting pressure on all governments as well as on the Parliament to demand a ceasefire now. 

Mahmoud Darwish, a Palestinian poet and communist, wrote, “We suffer from an incurable disease called hope.”

Let us be worthy of his words, but above all, of his life-time struggle. Let us be the catalyst that brings the victory of the peoples closer in their fight against imperialism. In the same way that we were able to bring down Apartheid in South Africa, we can get rid of Israeli Zionism.

For a just and lasting resolution, we reiterate our long-held demands:

  • The creation of a viable Palestinian state within the 1967 borders with East Jerusalem as its capital.
  • The dismantling of Israeli settlements in the West Bank and the lifting of the blockade imposed on Gaza since 2006.
  • The release of all Palestinian political prisoners and an end to arbitrary detentions.
  • The guarantee of the right of return for Palestinian refugees from 1948.
  • The repeal of all apartheid laws that relegate Palestinians living in Israel to second-class citizenship.
  • Expanded support for the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions campaign, including academic and institutional BDS.
  • The end of the illegal recruitment by the Israeli Army in Canada.

Central Executive Committee, Communist Party of Canada