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

Never-Ending Conflict

Jan 15, 2024

This article is translated from the January 10, 2024, issue of Lutte Ouvrière (Workers Struggle), the paper of the revolutionary workers group of that name active in France.

The Israeli far right sees the war in Gaza as an opportunity to push ahead with its program to expel Palestinians from their land.

The leader of the Religious Zionist Party, Finance Minister Bezalel Smotrich, has put forward a target figure: “100,000 or 200,000 Arabs in Gaza", which would mean expelling over two million Palestinians. He is also in favor of re-establishing Jewish settlements.

Defense Minister Yoav Gallant countered, "There will be no Israeli civilian presence in the Gaza Strip once the objectives of the war have been achieved." Remaining very vague about the “Palestinian actors” who could administer the Gaza Strip and ensure security there, he continued "on condition that they are not hostile to Israel and do not act against it." He made no reference to the Palestinian Authority, nor to Fatah, the party of its president, Mahmoud Abbas, contrary to what the U.S. wishes. The U.S. government speaks of a “renewed” Palestinian Authority to run the Gaza Strip. Under this plan, the Israeli army would reserve the right to intervene in Gaza, as it has done ever since it withdrew from the territory in 2005.

Minister Gallant spoke also of an “international force,” led by the U.S. with the help of European and Arab states, to coordinate humanitarian aid and finance and organize reconstruction, in which Israel intends to play no part.

The Gallant plan has not been approved by the divided Israeli government, which is under pressure from its far-right ministers.

For the moment, the Israeli government’s only plan is to crush the Gazan population with bombs. In the three months since the war began, more than 22,000 people have died there and 7,000 are missing. Water, food, electricity, and medicines are in short supply, and hospitals are practically out of action. In Rafah, a city in the south of Gaza, 500,000 displaced people are living on the streets, exposed to cold, rain and mud. Epidemics and famine threaten.

Discussions at the top of the Israeli state show that its leaders have nothing to propose but the perpetuation of the oppression of the Palestinians and the wars it engenders.