The latest news coming out of Israel is that municipal workers across the country have declared a one-day general strike in support of the wave of protests sweeping Israel, taking place today [Monday, August 1]. This is a hugely significant step, as it begins to link Israel’s powerful industrial labour movement with the political demands of the wider youth and working-class, something which has not happened on a large scale for decades.

The scathing remarks of Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu against Barak Obama for suggesting that the ‘two state solution’ should be based upon the pre-1967 borders, just before boarding the plane to Washington for a state visit, exposed the diplomatic weakness of the imperialist leaders.

The revolutionary wave sweeping through the Middle East has acquired a new dimension with the eruption of the Palestinian masses along Israel's borders last weekend. Every 15 May, Palestinians commemorate the Nakba (catastrophe) of the declaration of independence of the state of Israel on 15 May 1948. In recent years, protests have been marked by clashes between Israeli security forces and stone-throwing Palestinian youths, but yesterday was the first time the commemorations took on a more widespread and militant character. 

Consumer boycotts have been raised as a way of putting pressure on the Zionist Israeli authorities to cease their inhumane treatment of the Palestinian people and grant them their own state. History shows that such boycotts don’t actually achieve anything concrete. But recently we have witnessed another type of boycott, a workers’ boycott, carried out by dockers and transport workers who have refused to handle Israeli goods. That is much more of a threat to the Israeli government.

The barbaric Israeli Defence Force attack on the aid flotilla trying to break the embargo on Gaza is a clear indication of the growing crisis within Israeli society. The old ideology that held together Israeli society, Labour Zionism, has broken down, as capitalism in this small country can no longer guarantee the Jewish workers the basic social reforms of the past.

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