Today the International Court of Justice in the Hague has opened its hearing on the legality of Israel's wall that has been built in the last few months in the occupied West Bank and would leave Palestinians isolated in enclaves in only part of the West Bank. Let us make no mistake about this wall, what the government of Israel is doing is basically building Ghettos for the Palestinians. These walls should come down.
Yet the question is how and by whom? And this question is related to other questions: Can we get justice in the Hague?
Clearly, those who trust the court of the ruling class , and seek a solution within the imperialist order, support the idea that the wall between a Palestinian mini-state and Israel should be removed a few miles to the East. As the Palestinians' permanent observer to the United Nations said, the network of fences and walls would "render the two-state solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict practically impossible."
Nasser Al-Kidwa is also of the view that a ruling against Israel's West Bank fence could pave the way for international sanctions against Israel. He said he hoped a non-binding ruling by the court could lead to the same kind of international action that followed the court's 1971 opinion that South Africa's occupation of Namibia was illegal. That decision led to sanctions against apartheid South Africa.
Meanwhile, Arab League Secretary-General Amr Moussa told reporters at The Hague on Monday that his organization does not think the court's ruling will conflict with the U.S.-backed road map.
Assuming for the sake of argument that the Court will side with the views expressed by Mr. Al-Kidwa and recommend Israel to bring down the wall, what then? Is there any one who thinks that the government of Israel will do it?
The rulers of Israel, who are acting to annex large parts of the West Bank, as any one who follows the announced plans of the Israel government knows, are staying away from the hearings, and are demagogically arguing that the barrier stops Palestinian suicide bombers from infiltrating its towns and cities.
Sharon and his friends can afford to stay away from the hearing because they are backed by the governments of the U.S and Europe. They know perfectly well that even if the court rules against them, they can simply shrug their shoulders. To say it simply, the idea of two bourgeois states, one, a strong Israel on 80% of the land and one a mini-state whose role is to supply cheap labor to the Israeli capitalist class is no more than an illusion that an increasing number of people can see through.
Precisely because the oppressed Palestinians know they can not expect any justice in the Hague, the terrorists backed by the fanatic Islamic reactionaries took the lives of six innocent Israelis and wounded sixty others in Jerusalem one day before the start of the hearings in the Hague.
However, this criminal act now only pushes the Israel masses into the hands of Sharon, and it helps the Israeli government to win the war of propaganda. The government of Israel is arguing of course that the wall is necessary to save lives. Arnold Roth, who lost his daughter, Malka, in the attack on the Sbarro restaurant in Jerusalem, said that the terror victims were in the Hague to express support for the fence saying that it was likely to prevent further terror attacks.
While the hearings in the court house began the propagandists for the Israeli government the so called Representatives of the ZAKA victims arrived early in the morning with the wreckage of Bus 19, which was blown up in a suicide attack in Jerusalem. The shell of the bus was placed outside the court as part of a mass demonstration in support of Israel. The pro-Israeli government protesters included more than 1,000 students from Israel, Britain, France, Germany, Holland and Poland. At the same time, the Christians for Israel , a far right fundamentalist organization will stage a rally through the streets of the city bearing pictures of 927 terror victims.
Later in the afternoon, a second Palestinian demonstration is planned, with participants to include Palestinian Authority Ministers Saeb Erekat and Nabil Sha'ath, Israeli lawmakers from Hadash, Mohammed Barakeh, Ahmed Tibi and Issam Makhoul, Palestinians affected by the fence, and support groups from Europe. The Palestinians intend to erect a symbolic fence outside the court gates.
While the Israeli masses pushed to the right see the Hadash 's delegation as the friends of the terrorists, or in the best case naïve dreamers who can not help themselves, not to speak of helping the Israeli masses, the Palestinian masses who understand that nothing can be achieved in the Hague, see them as those who support unreal ideas that can never be materialized.
Yes, indeed those who support the idea of a Palestinian mini-state as a solution to the national question are the same who think that South Africa of today is the solution. However, what we have in South Africa is the continuation of the same thing with a few cosmetic changes. The white ruling class has the ownership of the economy; the black bureaucrats in suits and expensive cars use the power of the state to protect the capitalists, while the workers and the poor continue to suffer but have the right to elect those who will cheat them after the elections.
Today, it is unlikely that the imperialists will support sanctions against Israel. However in a case of a revolutionary situation when the workers in this land will be close to take power, like in South Africa, the imperialists would decently go for the two bourgeois states or even for one bourgeois state.
But in the mean time, state terrorism and the individual terror will not only kill more innocent people but support each other in maintaining the imperialist's nightmare we live through.
The only way to break through this nightmare is by the revolutionary united struggle of the Arab and the Israeli working class. Any other road can lead only to more despair and this despair will only push the masses to the right.