THE NEW WORKER

The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain
Week commencing 17th March 2017


Zionists bar Palestinian rights activist

ZIONIST mythology maintains that Israel allows free speech and that it is the only “democracy” in the Middle East. The reality that lies behind Zionist propaganda was seen last weekend when the chair of the Palestine Solidarity campaign was detained at Tel Aviv airport and subsequently deported under a new Israeli law barring any supporters of the boycott Israel campaign.

Palestine Solidarity Campaign Chair Hugh Lanning was on his way to the “autonomous” Palestinian Authority in the occupied West Bank whose entry points are all controlled by the Israelis.

Lanning, an urbane former senior full-time union official and Labour Party activist, has visited Israel and the Occupied Territories many times before without any hitch. Now he has become the first British citizen to fall foul of new Zionist legislation aimed at all supporters of the Boycott, Divestment and Sanctions (BDS) movement from entering the country.

The Israeli embassy in London has been quick to demonise Lanning for having links with Hamas, the Palestinian Muslim Brotherhood that runs the besieged Gaza Strip, because he met their leaders when he took part in the “Miles of Smiles” international convoy that entered the besieged Palestinian enclave in 2012. A Zionist diplomat in London told the media: “Lanning is associated with the leaders of Hamas, which is designated as a terror group across the EU; a group whose anti-Semitic charter calls for the killing of all Jews.”

Needless to say this is not quite true as far as Britain in concerned. Though Hamas’ military wing is listed as a proscribed organisation Hamas as a whole is not banned. In any case banning Lanning has nothing to do with Hamas. It’s about the international boycott campaign that has exposed the real face of Israeli oppression and enraged Zionists across the world.

The Israeli authorities made this clear in a joint statement from the Strategic Affairs Ministry and the Immigration Authority in Tel Aviv which said the decision was due to Lanning’s ongoing efforts to advance a boycott of Israel and was reached following consultation with the Foreign Ministry.

The statement claimed that PSC, the campaign led by Lanning, is the leading force in the effort to delegitimize Israel in Britain and among the biggest in Europe. According to the statement, the group cooperates “with other delegitimizing organizations to promote the boycott and other activities against the state of Israel.”

In fact Israel lost its legitimacy in 1948 when the Zionist entity ethnically cleansed the land it stole from the Arabs in the first Arab-Israeli war. Over a million Palestinian Arabs were forced from their homes and denied the right to return despite subsequent rulings from the United Nations, the body that had created the State of Israel in the first place.

Those refugees and their descendants have never given up their right to return to their land. And this is the heart of the crisis in the Middle East that has led to five full-scale wars and continuing simmering conflicts.

Israel is economically and politically entirely dependent on American imperialism and successive Israeli governments have existed to serve the needs of American imperialism in the region. And those needs are to weaken and divide the Arabs to ensure that the big oil corporations can continue their exploitation and plunder of Arab oil until it eventually runs out.

Israel’s rulers dream of dominating the Middle East and colonising Palestine. But their petty ambitions are not the driving force of US imperialism. Israel provides US imperialism with a convenient alibi to play the role of “honest broker” in the Middle East. They enable the feudal Arab oil princes, whose thrones are propped up by imperialist bayonets, to claim that the Arabs’ enemy is not imperialism as such but Israel and this supposedly all-powerful “Zionist lobby”, which pulls the strings in the United States.

The tail does not wag the dog and Israel and the American “Zionist lobby” does not dictate American foreign policy. They serve it.