The New Worker

The Weekly paper of the New Communist Party of Britain

Week commencing 18th August 2006

The Lebanese patriotic resistance score historic victory!

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by our Arab Affairs Correspondent

of thousands of Lebanese refugees are making their way back to their shattered homes in southern Lebanon following the UN brokered ceasefire that began on Monday. Israeli troops are starting to withdraw to the frontier as plans for the deployment of Lebanese army and UN forces take shape. And as life returns to normal in northern Israel, Israelis count the cost of the five-week war that has ended in the defeat of the Zionist entity.

In Beirut Hezbollah supporters took to the streets with leaflets praising the Lebanese people for standing firm in the face of the might of the Israeli army. The Lebanese people, who closed ranks around the resistance these past few weeks, overcame the waverers and pro-imperialist elements within their coalition government.

The Lebanese government, backed by the Arab League and Iran, stood up to the Americans at the United Nations, forcing the UN Security Council to revise its first draft ceasefire resolution to take into account Arab demands.


Hezbollah leader Hassan Nasrallah, speaking on resistance TV in Beirut on the day the guns fell silent, said he was cautiously pleased with the outcome of the UN resolution. With the spark of resistance never leaving his eyes, Nasrallah said he hoped for Israel’s withdrawal, adding that the battle was a victory for the Lebanese people and all the Arabs. But he stressed that that the problem of the Israeli occupation of Palestine remains a top priority.

Speaking in the rubble of the bombed Beirut studio of Al Manar TV in a broadcast seen throughout Lebanon, Nasrallah called on the Lebanese people to return to their homes regardless of the continuing threat of renewed Israeli aggression. He also spoke of Lebanon’s losses. Over a 1,000 dead and many more wounded. Most of them civilians and a third of them children.

Southern Lebanon was devastated by Israeli terror bombing that forced some 900,000 Lebanese civilians to flee for their lives during the conflict. Ports and airports have been hit and parts of many Lebanese cities including the capital Beirut, with losses estimated at over $2.5 billion.

But Israel did not escape unscathed: 118 Israeli soldiers were killed and 402 wounded in the Lebanese mountains. Hezbollah missiles killed 43 Israeli civilians and wounded a further 1,350 in attacks on northern Israel and 500,000 Israelis fled to Tel Aviv and other towns out of range of the resistance rockets that caused some $1.1 billion worth of damage.

In Tel Aviv the blame-game has started with calls from the rabid right of the Zionist establishment for premier Ehud Olmert’s resignation over the war which has ended with Israel worse off than before it started. Three members of the Israeli parliament, the Knesset, were ejected during Olmert’s report on the truce for heckling. Many others, including left social democrat Meretz opposition leader Yossi Beilin, are calling for a commission of inquiry into the offensive.


Now Olmert will have to bargain for the release of the two Israeli soldiers held by Hezbollah. Now Israel will have to accept a beefed-up UN force, comprised mainly by troops from the European Union, across the frontier with Lebanon. And Olmert will have to start negotiating the return of the Shebaa Farms to end the conflict with Hezbollah.

Some Israelis blame Olmert and his army chiefs for incompetence. Others know that Olmert’s decision to use Hezbollah’s capture of two Israeli soldiers in July as a pretext for a full-scale invasion was prompted by Anglo-American imperialism.

A report in this week’s New Yorker magazine says that earlier this summer Israeli officials visited Washington to brief the government on their plan to respond to any Hezbollah provocation and to “find out how much the US would bear”.

The Israelis apparently first approached Vice-President Dick Cheney, knowing that if they secured his support, the backing of President Bush and Condoleezza Rice would be easier.

The report by award-winning investigative journalist Seymour Hersh quotes an unidentified US government consultant with close ties to the Israelis who says: “The Israelis told us it would be a cheap war with many benefits. Why oppose it? We’ll be able to hunt down and bomb missiles, tunnels, and bunkers from the air. It would be a demo for Iran.”

A former intelligence officer, also quoted, says: “We told Israel, ‘Look, if you guys have to go, we’re behind you all the way. But we think it should be sooner rather than later. The longer you wait, the less time we have to evaluate and plan for Iran before Bush gets out of office’.”


Both Israeli and US officials say that the Israeli military operation against Hezbollah was triggered by the seizing of two Israeli soldiers, apparently to be bargained with for a possible prisoner swap. But Hersh’s report adds to evidence that Israel had been anticipating a Hezbollah provocation for some time and was ready for massive reprisals.

The heroism of the Hezbollah militia and the fighters of the Amal movement, the Lebanese communist party and the Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine (General Command) who laid down their lives to beat the Zionists back has inspired the Arab masses from the Atlantic to the Gulf. It has also strengthened the hand of Syria and Iran, who have both backed the Lebanese resistance in its struggle against Israel.

Syrian President Bashar al Assad said Israel had been defeated and Hezbollah had “hoisted the banner of victory” adding that peace in the Middle East was not possible with the Bush administration in power in Washington. “This is an administration that adopts the principle of pre-emptive war that is absolutely contradictory to the principle of peace,” he said. “Consequently, we don’t expect peace soon or in the foreseeable future”.

 Iranian President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad to cheering crowds that  Hezbollah had “hoisted the banner of victory” over Israel and thwarted US-led plans to forge a Middle East dominated by “the US, Britain and Zionists”.

Like Hezbollah, the Lebanese Communist Party reacted cautiously to the UN ceasefire resolution but it concluded that: “The people and resistance of Lebanon have displayed their mighty steel will and we must now frustrate all attempts to gut and empty this patriotic victory of its contents on the military, political, economic and social levels. Our central task must be to fortify and bolster Lebanese national unity, preventing any infiltration, reinforcing the legitimate confrontation with the ongoing American-Israeli scheme against our homeland.”


Bush’s Zionist cannon fodder

THE ISRAELI leader Ehud Olmert has been forced to admit serious errors in his 34-day onslaught against southern Lebanon, where he failed to achieve a single one of his declared intentions – from the release of two Israeli soldiers captured by Hezbollah to the disarming and neutralisation of Lebanese resistance movement.

 Instead Olmert’s attack on Lebanon has shown up the Israeli defence forces as incompetent and ineffectual and outraged the world at the high level of casualties among Lebanese civilians – who now more than ever recognise Hezbollah as their only true defenders.

 Olmert’s policies have done nothing whatsoever to improve the well-being or safety of the Israeli people – just the opposite. But this war was never being fought for their benefit.

 Olmert, like Tony Blair, is another of George W Bush’s willing stooges and the attack on southern Lebanon and Hezbollah was an indirect attack on the supporters and suppliers of Hezbollah in Syria and Iran – both listed among Bush’s “axis of evil” targets.

 The White House had this attack in mind over a year ago when the CIA engineered the forced withdrawal of Syrian troops from Lebanon and the installation of a weak pro-western puppet government in Beirut.

 The imperialists hoped that an Israeli war against Hezbollah would take some of the global news spotlight off the deteriorating position of US and British occupation forces in Iraq and Afghanistan.

 But, like the illegal and ill-advised invasion of Iraq, this imperialist adventure has totally backfired.

 Bush and Blair succeeded in delaying a United Nations call for an immediate ceasefire as Olmert begged for another week, then another two weeks, then more, to achieve his aims.    This delay was meant to benefit Israel but it only led to further defeats by Hezbollah. The imperialists have complained long and hard that Iran and Syria are supplying weapons to Hezbollah while they are openly supplying tons of weaponry, including the bombs that have been raining down on Lebanese civilians.

 The people of Israel now have to come to terms with the fact that, in spite of all the US military aid they have had, they are not the strongest military force in the region and that military aggression is a dangerous policy.

 It is slowly sinking in that Israeli conscripts have been cynically used as cannon fodder for Bush’s benefit – and they are becoming increasingly disillusioned.

 Any Israeli government that had its own people’s interests at heart would seek security and stability through good terms with its Arab neighbours. Yet Israel does nothing but continually attack and provoke its Arab neighbours. In the Lebanese border area there have been frequent Israeli incursions and kidnappings of Lebanese hostages prior to the capture of the two Israeli soldiers.

 The Israeli government refuses to allow the Palestinian people independence and sovereignty nor any prospect of economic stability. Israel steals their land, bulldozes their orchards, bombs their airport, blockades their sea-coast and casually launches bloody bombing raids across the beaches of Gaza.

 Palestinians are left with no possibility of a peaceful or prosperous life. They are forced to fight Israel to survive The only Israeli leader to take a few faltering steps along real road to peace was Rabin and he was assassinated for it.

 The Israeli attacks are presented as part of Bush’s “war on terror” and the myth of fascist Muslim global plot against “western values”. It’s western imperialism that has, since 1916, repeatedly attacked and interfered with Arab countries.

Religion doesn’t come into it – unless American worship of oil and the power it brings is a religion.

 Of course Muslims are angered when day after day they see pictures of Arab parents scrabbling in the dust and rubble in Baghdad, Fallujah, Lebanon and Kabul for the dead bodies of their children. Every sane human being on the planet is angered and enraged by these scenes. It is not Muslim terrorism that has caused these scenes but western imperialist bombs. They are the real terrorists.

 But the resistance fighters of Iraq, Afghanistan and the Lebanon have shown that though they can bomb and murder from on high, the imperialist powers can be beaten and thrown back. And on the ground, the increasingly disillusioned and unwilling cannon fodder is now weak and fallible.

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