We recently received this report, which shows how the Israeli state deals
with anyone - even if they are Jewish - who dares to take up the
plight of the Palestinians in the refugee camps in a serious manner. Tali Fahima
is being held without any charges, with her arrest being extended continuously.
In spite of only having minority support in the Knesset, Sharon holds on to power. This is because both the left and the right continue to support him, for they cannot offer an alternative. That alternative can only come from the working class.
A general strike in the public sector in Israel has been called in
protest against the non-payment of wages and the proposed 2005 budget
cuts. The strike is affecting all government ministries, municipal
authorities, state-owned companies and transportation, including the
national airline El Al. Refuse collection workers, traffic wardens,
dockworkers, railway, telecom, electricity and hospital workers are
also involved. Once again, it reflects the serious class divide that is
opening up in Israeli society.
This is the seventh day of “Operation Days of Penitence” that has
killed at least 70 Palestinians, many of them women and children. This
is the largest operation in the Gaza Strip in the four years since the
beginning of this Intifada.
Anyone who examines the situation of the Middle East, not in each
country separately but as a whole, must come to the conclusion that the
days of social and economic stability are definitely over. Instead of
economic stability we have crisis. Instead of peace we are caught in
the crossfire between the imperialists’ state terror and the individual
terror of the Islamic fundamentalists.
The Sharon government’s days are clearly numbered. His brutal two week
campaign in Gaza has achieved the opposite of what he was expecting.
The question is who and what can replace him? The alternative must
clearly come from within the labour movement.