Lift the siege immediately!
Below is a translated and a slightly edited statement posted earlier today (31/05/2010) on the website of Tnua’t Maavak Sozialisti / Harakat Nidal Eshtaraki (Socialist Struggle Movement –the Committee for a Workers’ International in Israel) on the killing of peace protesters by IDF paratroopers early this morning.
Below we provide an initial response from Socialist Struggle Movement in Israel (CWI) following the killing of protesters during the IDF takeover of the international aid convoy, last night. We call on everyone to participate in demonstrations and protests.
Stop the killing of demonstrators, lift the siege immediately
It seems that about 10 demonstrators were killed and others wounded last night during the far-right government´s raid on the flotilla, which sailed in protest against the siege of Gaza. Similar to previous protest flotillas, the demonstrators did not endanger, in any way whatsoever, the security of the residents of Israel. This time, helicopters, missile boats and commando forces were sent to confront them, and 200 immigration authority officials were waiting for them at Ashdod port, waiting to deport them from the country.
The government cynically shakes off responsibility. But there’s no need for a "state commission of inquiry" to understand that the responsibility for the killing lies on the shoulders of the government ministers and top officers of the army. While there is a media blackout on many details, we are being given a simplistic picture of events in the press, according to which the IDF soldiers were attacked on one of the boats with various objects. The IDF soldiers should not have been there to begin with, and, in reality, they were used for the political goal of thuggishly liquidating protest, even outside the official territory of Israel. There should be an emphatic rejection of the use – which is common in Israel – of the military and other "arms of security" for the trampling of the right of protest.
The ministers, generals, and their pet journalists attempt to divert attention from the aggressive, destructive and oppressive policy that the Netanyahu-Barak-Liberman government executes, including the siege and occupation themselves, as well as the wild and racist incitement against the Arab-Palestinian population in Israel. The Israeli government, which is made up of warmongers and oppresses the Palestinians, harms with its actions also the long term interests of the residents of Israel.
The only alternative to such disasters and the rest of the atrocities of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict is the building of a wide and united social movement of ordinary Israelis and Palestinians, Jews and Arabs, against "divide and rule" policies, against the siege and the occupation, against all kinds of oppression and discrimination, for equal national democratic rights for all, and for the toppling of the corrupt capitalist elites in Israel and the region.
The Socialist Struggle Movement supports the escalation of the protests and will participate in the demonstrations this evening at 19:00 in Tel-Aviv, Jerusalem and Haifa, and more demonstrations that are expected in the weekend. We call upon all of you to come and protest along with us, Jews and Arabs, and struggle for the following demands:
* No to the pyromaniac government which ignites the region
* Protest is not terrorism – lift the siege
* Security is not built on demonstrators’ dead bodies
* The racist government – security risk
* This is not security, this is disaster – enough with the lies of the government
* Generals and ministers – enough with the killing of protestors
* Even with missile boats – you will not silence protestors
* Enough with the use of soldiers against civilians
* No whitewashing will help – the siege is terrorism
* Jews and Arabs refuse to be enemies
* Jews and Arabs fight against thugs and racists
* Invest in education – not in siege and occupation
* Yes to reconstruction and to medicines – No to more wars
* LIFT THE SIEGE / DISMENTLE SETTLEMENTS / BRING DOWN THE WALL / LIQUIDATE SEPARATION / SMASH RACISM / END THE OCCUPATION!