In the last few days the masses in many parts of the Middle East have been
pouring out onto the streets in protest against the murder of civilians in Iraq
and Gaza. They have been coming out emboldened by the feeling that the killing
machine of the occupying armies in Iraq and Gaza can be defeated. Yossi
Schwartz, just returned from one of these protests in Rafah (Gaza) looks at the
effects throughout the Middle East and in particular in Israel.
At recent gatherings of the major powers (from the D-Day celebrations to the G8)
a lot of noise has been made about more cooperation between the major powers, in
particular between the USA and Europe. What lies behind this? Is there really a
common position developing? Yossi Schwartz explains why any idea of unity
between the major powers is a mere pipedream.
At 10.45 this morning Baghdad local time, in a hasty ceremony held behind
locked doors, the American proconsul Paul Bremer “handed over power” to an interim
government composed of Iraqis. More than the
representative of an imperial power handing over power to a grateful ally, Paul
Bremer resembled a man who had burned his fingers hastily tossing the hot potato
to another. Alan Woods looks at what is the real state of play.
As mass resistance to the occupation of Iraq develops, the new Iraqi
"government" will find it extremely difficult to control the
situation. This growing instability in Iraq comes at a time when just across the
border the Saudi regime is on the verge of a major crisis and could be toppled.
This has led US strategists to consider the invasion of Saudi Arabia as a
possible next step. But it is fraught with danger.
The severe fighting taking place in Iraq is presented to us as some
inexplicable phenomenon, produced by “dark forces” resisting the march of
“progress and democracy”. In reality what we are facing is a mass resistance
movement aimed at expelling a foreign army of occupation. This movement is
fuelled by the terrible conditions Iraqi workers are facing, conditions created
by the domination of imperialism.
After three weeks of fighting the moderate Shia Islamic leader, Ali
al-Sistani, has intervened and brokered a compromise in Najaf. However,
no long term solution can be provided by such manoeuvres. Today they
may "pacify" Najaf, but the fighting will erupt again in the future.
Only if the working class gives a lead to the resistance can a final
solution be found. By Fred Weston (August 27, 2004)