The Guardian July 24, 2002


Intensify solidarity actions with Palestinian people

Statement of The Israeli Communist Forum

The decision of the government of Israel in 7.7.2002  to support a 
racist legislation, prohibiting the sale of lands to Arabs at the so called 
"Community Residences" and areas that the Government intends to "Judaize", 
allegedly for reasons of "national security"  marks a further stage in 
the process of adopting an open outright anti-Arab racism as an official 
Government policy.

The proposal was supported by an overwhelming majority of 17 Ministers, 
with two dissenting and one abstaining.

Labour's members of the coalition Government, excluding one who opposed the 
proposal, made themselves scarce at the time when they were called upon to 
cast their vote.

It is with full appreciation that we greet the many people who took a stand 
in opposition to this despicable decision. We call upon every decent human 
being to join and reinforce the campaign, waged in order to make the 
Knesset abort this obscenity, when it will be presented to it for approval.

This hideous decision is only a recent one in a series of racist 
discriminating measures taken by this Government against Israel's Arab 
citizens.

Among the more notoriously infamous of these was the decision to diminish 
the payment of social security benefits for children to those families that 
are not "Army draft liable". The obvious intention of that was to deprive 
Arab families of those benefits.

To these we must add a whole series of Bills, passed recently by the 
Knesset, the sole purpose of which is to exclude the Arab citizens from the 
political arena in Israel. Should this tendency subsist, Israel's becoming 
an Apartheid country will be assured!

The discrimination against Arab citizens (consisting approximately 20 per 
cent of the population in Israel) in all spheres of life is, and was, a 
policy deeply rooted in the entire Zionist movement, including all former 
governments of Israel.

In the past, though, Governments shied away from giving an open outright 
legal and official status to racist policy, concealing it under a variety 
of pretexts ("land expropriations for development sakes", etc.). But this 
Government unashamedly declares in open its racist policy and supports 
official legislation accordingly.

The Israeli Government took these racist measures also on pretexts 
pertaining to the state of national security. Its continuing assault on the 
Palestinian Authority  the areas under its jurisdiction having been 
reoccupied almost entirely without any intention to retreat in the 
foreseeable future  being in the background.

The most formidable and lasting assault on the Palestinian People since the 
occupation on June 1967 is launched these days. One of the reasons for it 
being carried out already for such a long time is the open unequivocal 
support, more than ever before, which it gains from the US, which has even 
stopped pretending to have any balanced attitude in its policy.

We are especially expressing our denunciation of President George W Bush's 
recent assailment on the Palestinian Authority and on the Palestinian 
President  Yasser Arafat.

We condemn his demands to replace the Palestinian leadership, as a 
precondition for the forwarding of peace talks. The US has no right, 
whatsoever, to dictate to the Palestinian People, or to any other People, 
who should be their leaders or what kind of changes they should make.

In conditions of extensive occupation of almost all of the Palestinian 
areas, of daily killings, of repression, humiliations, curfews and 
blockades  the US does not demand anything from the occupier and 
oppressor. Only from the Palestinians.

The hypocrisy in the US's demands for the "democratisation" of the 
Palestinian Authority is only emphasised by its steady and mighty support, 
given to all of the Arab dictatorships. Egypt, Jordan, and of course Saudi 
Arabia and the Gulf Emirates, all of them are, as everybody is aware, 
renown for their democratic regimes.

The present US policy exhorts Israel, more than ever, to subsist in its 
extensive and unprecedented military activities, sinking our region in 
bloodshed.

In addition to the many victims, this causes considerable socio-economic 
damage.

The Palestinian People in the occupied territories, of whom many lodge 
under inhuman conditions, suffering from unemployment and terrible poverty, 
those who got hurt the most by these [measures].

The People of Israel pay an economic price too. Recently there was 
considerable rise in the prices of a series of elementary consumer goods. 
There were also unprecedented cuts in the payments of unemployment 
benefits, minimum income insurance benefits and of all the welfare 
benefits.

* Considering the present state of affairs, in our view it is significant 
to intensify the protest activities of the Arab population in Israel and of 
the Jewish democratic forces against the Government's policies of war, 
occupation and racist discrimination!

* We demand the immediate revocation the recent racist decision made by the 
Government, as well as all of the other racist measures adopted recently, 
and all those taken in Israel in past!

* We demand a thorough change in the Israeli Government's policies 
concerning the Palestinian People, the Arab population of Israel and in the 
socio-economic sphere!

* We call upon all of the peace forces of the world to intensify activities 
in solidarity with the Arab

Palestinian People, and protest activities against the Government of Israel 
and against the US, the policies of which serve to boost the bloodshed and 
to prevent, more than ever, any chances for peace in the region!

* * *
The Israeli Communist Forum, website: http://www.geocities.com/ic_forum/indexen.html

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