The Guardian • Issue #2083

Time to act, welcome to 2024!

Don't celebrate invasion.

2024 is here and we welcome all Party members and Guardian readers to a new year of struggle. It is time to act!

It is clear that the Zionist genocide of the Palestinian people in Gaza has been the spark for millions to take to the streets around the world since 8 October 2023.

For many, who have rallied and marched in solidarity with Palestine on a weekly basis, the demand for a permanent ceasefire may seem unachievable. However, the weekly rallies and other actions for Palestine have been a stone in the shoe for the Albanese government.

Unfortunately, with only a few exceptions, the trade union movement has not come out in defence of Palestine or taken an independent position to condemn Israel’s war crimes. This has seen rank and file members from across unions organising together in the struggle without their leadership. The rank and file of all organisations has a key role to play in forcing conservative leaderships to stand for justice.

Grass roots action put pressure on the Labor government to vote for a ceasefire at the United Nations General Assembly last year. We recall the shameful position of the Australian government when they abstained from the earlier vote on a UN resolution to stop the genocide.

As if this were not enough, the Australian government has supported the US and UK militaries as they launched illegal airstrikes against sites used by Houthis in Yemen. The real excuse is not to protect shipping and trade but to protect imperialist interests in the Middle East and bring Iran into the conflict. Only a political solution to end the genocide on Gaza and the freedom of Palestine can resolve the Red Sea situation. Houthis’ actions are in support of Palestine, putting pressure on Zionist Israel to end its criminal genocide.

As communists we commend and support South Africa’s principled decision to bring Israel to the International Court of Justice for war crimes including genocide. It is shameful that the Australian government has joined the core of the imperialist west in remaining solid in their support of apartheid Israel and in practice endorsing genocide.

The CPA calls on the Australian government to demand an enduring ceasefire, recognise an independent Palestinian state; support a reconstruction plan under the UN to rebuild the country, and guarantee its security. We call on the government to demand the right to return and access to water for all displaced Palestinians.

Australia must also cut ties with the apartheid regime. The Albanese government should recall the Australian ambassador to Israel and cease the sale of military craft which could be used in the genocide of the people of Palestine. Netanyahu and his war cabinet must be charged with and tried for war crimes. We owe all of this to the people of Palestine who demand their right to self-determination.

The escalation in the conflict against the Palestinian people comes shortly after the sad outcome of the Referendum for an Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people Voice.

After the Referendum result, it is essential we rebuild solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people. They demand action and we have the opportunity in the upcoming Invasion Day demonstrations to stand shoulder to shoulder with the first peoples of Australia. They also demand their right to self-determination, to decolonisation, and to be able to determine and build their own destiny.

Communists were the first in this country to stand for Indigenous rights, and we will continue to campaign for truth telling, treaty and land rights.

In the current context there are two key priorities for the period ahead. One of them is to join in solidarity with Aboriginal and Torres strait islanders in their struggles. The second priority is the building of a peace and anti-imperialist movement. War and the potential of a nuclear obliteration appear to come closer to reality every day. The world’s instability in the imperialist race for western hegemony can destroy life on the planet as we know it.

All party activists working together with the community can drive the movement against war. As part of this it is essential to continue the campaign against AUKUS. The preparations for war and the excessive military expenditure comes on the backs of working-class people and their families who are experiencing a cost of living crisis.

The campaign to stop the damage to the environment by fossil fuel companies, and the preparations for war is a necessity for all. We must try to unite the peace and environmental movements to save the planet. Climate change is a reality that the capitalist class tries to hide. The successive extreme weather events we see now year on year can no longer be ignored. We must demand the war on the environment stops. We need a system change to live in harmony with the environment. We owe this to future generations.

Party members must work among the youth and organise them at all levels to disrupt the system of exploitation and destruction of the planet. Young people have the right to exist and live with decency. We should demand free access to education and housing to fully develop their capacities.

The right to well paid jobs and conditions starts with working people joining their unions. The right to organise must be defended, and workers must be able to exercise their right to withdraw their labour to advance their industrial demands and achieve safety on the job.

The time to act is now, so as we welcome the new year, we invite everyone to organise and to join the class struggle in whatever form it takes. This of course includes the political struggle for a better society.

The CPA invites you to join the class struggle for socialism by joining our ranks with the aim of changing Australian society from an egocentric and self-destructive capitalist mode of production into a society that cares about the people and the environment, a socialist society.

It is never too late to become an activist but as we mentioned throughout this article the time to act is now. Bring it on in 2024!

The Guardian can also be viewed/downloaded in PDF format. View More