Racist Hysteria and Attacks on Democratic Rights

The Palestinian prison breakout from Gaza has given rise to a new wave of bloodthirsty racist hysteria in the imperialist media. The racism is obvious when you consider one salient fact: the Hamas surprise attack on Israeli forces and parts of the nearby settler population appears to have inflicted a similar level of deaths and injuries that have been inflicted on Palestinians many times since 2007, when the Israeli organised coup against Hamas’s 2005 election by the Palestinian in a free vote, overthrew the movement in the West Bank and confined it to Gaza. To Israel, killing 1000-2000 Palestinians in periodic massacres was regularly dignified by the disgusting phrase “mowing the lawn”. And indeed, one recurrent and even well-publicised phenomenon during such atrocities as Operation Cast Lead (2009) and Operation Protective Edge (2014), which both killed thousands of Palestinians, was to see Israelis camped out on high ground overlooking the Gaza Strip, cheering and drinking in celebration of the bombs falling.

Those fulminating at the supposed ‘barbarism’ of the Hamas militants who led the breakout, from what even former British Prime Minister David Cameron acknowledged in 2010 is a “prison camp”, for alleged killing of Israelis in the vicinity of Gaza, never had any problem with this. Such phenomena are a symptom of the fact that Israel is not a normal state. Its adult population in the surrounding area is recent armed settlers who are direct beneficiaries of the ethnic cleansing of the Palestinian population to Gaza. There is a considerable popular awareness that they live on land taken from the Palestinian population, and fear and loathing of that population. Hence the bloodthirsty celebrations, and the fear of revenge if there was ever a break out.

Some apparent evidence that seems to suggest that the political Hamas cadre were at pains not to ill-treat the prisoners that they took. Amid the fog of war, it has already come to light that many of the claims made by Israel are false; like the grotesque one about ‘beheaded babies’ that Biden lied that he had seen photographs of, but now the Israeli military say they don’t have any evidence. Many more of these claims are likely to be shown up as false. The claim of a massacre at a ‘rave’ that was taking place near to the Gaza fence at the time of the breakout also looks very suspicious – such lies go around the world but then it turns out there is no actual evidence for them. Apparently in one case a picture of suffering, injured children was posted online with the claim that they were Israeli children, only to emerge later that the image was of Palestinian children (!!). The same kind of lying and falsification has been legion over Ukraine.

Their purpose is to whip up and enhance racist hysteria. There is no concern for human life in this hysteria, but rather the demonisation of the ‘other’: Arabs and Muslims. That is the purpose of the fatuous comparisons with 9/11 that are being bandied around. the truth is that the Palestinian people have suffered many ‘9/11s’ at the hands of Zionism since 1948, and arguably since Britain issued the Balfour Declaration in 1917, promising their homeland to a third-party, racist colonial movement.

Now we see an attempt by the ruling class to extend the criminalisation of dissent that we have already seen over Ukraine, to the issue of Palestine. This now extends to criminalisation of support for the Palestinians per se – though they will have problems with that, as the Palestinians have literally millions of sympathisers in Britain today.  The racist sociopath Home Secretary Braverman is blatantly inciting the cops to arrest people for carrying Palestinian flags, on the supposed ground that the display of the flag is some sort of ‘harassment’ of Jews. This is blatant, and premeditated racist harassment and thuggery by the government and cops. a reflection in reality of the genocidal politics of Zionists in all the major bourgeois and pro-capitalist political parties. They have no problem with a genocide of the population of Gaza. This has already led to the arrest of one young Asian man in Manchester simply for carrying a Palestinian flag, prime facie a racist arrest in itself.

The Labour Party itself is led by vicious racists, with Keir Starmer as the bigot-in-chief. He was put into office as the result of a prolonged dirty-tricks scam campaign against Labour’s former left-wing leader, Jeremy Corbyn, led by the Zionist lobby, which the Blairite right-wing eagerly followed after they previously failed to discredit Corbyn with more conventional reactionary smears than the ‘anti-Semitism’ scam they finally settled on. But what is very visible now is the racist nature of that scam, as encapsulated in the genocidal politics of Keir Starmer himself. This culminated in Starmer’s endorsement, in an interview with LBC’s right-wing ‘shock jock’ Nick Ferrari (11 October) of the plan by the Israeli Defence Minister fascistic Likud thug Yoav Gallant, for a complete siege of Gaza. Evidently modelled on Hitler’s siege of Leningrad, the civilian population are being, as we speak, deprived of all fuel, food and water, with mass starvation and dying of thirst, patients dying from lack of power for hospital care, etc. This atrocity is as premeditatedly murderous as Auschwitz. But Starmer endorsed it, and said that Israel has the right to do it.

Criminal destruction of Gaza by Israel, 2023

This is what was always behind the Zionist witchhunt in Labour; the drive to transform Labour from the ‘broad church’ the social-democratic left fatuously wanted, into a bourgeois body run from above by neoliberals and neoconservatives, funded by corporate donations. The completion of the Blair project. The Ukraine war has been a watershed in the transformation of Labour into something capable of rivalling the Tories for extreme reaction, as both main parties united to defend the West funding Nazis in Ukraine. Only a few weeks ago this was given substantial exposure, on an international level, as Zelensky, in cahoots with Canada’s Liberal president Justin Trudeau, a figure who Starmer would no doubt want to emulate, led two standing ovations for a 98-year old SS Veteran in the Canadian Parliament. This was a major international political scandal that did a lot to expose the real nature of the imperialist proxy war in Ukraine. But Starmer’s Labour Party is unfazed about supporting genocidal Nazis who want to slaughter Russians. And he has now dotted the I’s and crosses the T’s on support for Zionists aiming at genocide and/or ethnic cleansing of the Palestinians. That was the truly sinister objective of the ‘anti-Semitism’ scam in Labour under Corbyn, it is now clear.

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