The Spark

the Voice of
The Communist League of Revolutionary Workers–Internationalist

“The emancipation of the working class will only be achieved by the working class itself.”
— Karl Marx

Deadly Attack on Gaza

Aug 15, 2022

This article is translated from the August 12 issue #2819 of Lutte Ouvrière (Workers’ Struggle), the newspaper of the revolutionary workers’ group of that name active in France.

The Israeli government launched a deadly military attack on Gaza on Friday, August 5, a day off in Palestine. The attack was officially intended to “prevent” a reaction by Palestinian nationalist group Islamist Jihad to the arrest of one of its leaders. Within three days, 46 Palestinians including 16 children were killed, and 360 injured.

Brand-new Prime Minister Yair Lapid unleashed his deadly artillery and drones on the Gaza Strip hardly more than a year after the last military operation, which killed 260 Palestinians and 14 Israelis. Under the guise of protecting the people of Israel, Lapid deliberately put them at risk of receiving retaliatory rockets from Gaza. It didn’t matter to him, since it was an opportunity to issue the threat: “Anyone who tries to harm Israel, know that we will find you.”

In this case, it was the 2.3 million people of Gaza who were harmed. Worse than that. These casualties were caused by so-called targeted bombings which hit a population with nowhere to take refuge. They are crammed into overcrowded apartments, locked inside Gaza’s border by a land, air and sea blockade that has dragged on for 15 years.

Per routine, after arresting Islamic Jihad militants in Jenin in the occupied West Bank, Lapid’s government blocked border checkpoints which had allowed thousands of Palestinian workers and small merchants to cross daily into Israel from Gaza’s north. But this also prevented patients from going to the Israeli hospital, and blocked oil tankers delivering fuel for Gaza’s only thermal power plant. Already subject to daily power restrictions, Gazans found themselves without any electricity in the blazing middle of August. “We live in a giant prison and no one protects us, not Hamas, not the Palestinian Authority, not Israel,” said one victim’s relative.

Indeed, it is a situation of apartheid that the Israeli power imposes more and more on the Palestinian population by accelerating colonization.

This is even the case inside Israel, dividing the Jewish population and the so-called Israeli Arabs. Meanwhile, from one war to the next the inhabitants of Gaza are reduced to hostages with no other prospect than to survive amidst poverty, unemployment, and fear.

This latest warlike operation Lapid launched continued for a day after the ceasefire negotiated by Egyptian authorities. Evidently its sole objective was to refresh the prime minister’s aura within an unstable government in the eyes of the most right-wing segment of Israeli public opinion. Before early elections announced for November, this may represent the start of an escalation of rivalry between Lapid and former Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. The Palestinian and also the Jewish population will have to pay the price.