28 July 2006

Comrade Hugo, birthday boy: "Presente!"

In the weeks since Apartheid Israel unleashed its war machine against occupied Palestine and expanded its blitzkrieg into Lebanon, the world has become sharply polarized around the issue. Amidst the ongoing slaughter of civilians and infrastructure in Lebanon, that polarization has left precious little space for those who condemn both Apartheid Israel and Hizbullah.

Some have endeavored to understand what's happening by calling the breakout of war the start of World War III. While there is some truth to this assertion, it is too simplistic. Instead, Apartheid Israel's latest attack signifies is a racheting up of the always-ongoing class war undertaken by the forces of capital and imperialism to subdue any effort to Resist made by the global poor.

Apart from the regional powers directly involved in the conflict, no state has given more full-throated support to the Palestinian and Lebanese Resistance than Venezuela. On his birthday today, CNN reported that Comrade Chávez travelled to Iran where he was to sign a number of agreements and "receive "the High Medallion of the Islamic Republic of Iran'."

Undoubtedly on the agenda will be Venezuela's role if Uncle Sam or one of his proxies uses the pretext of the conflagration throughout the region as an excuse to attack Iran. From the beginning, Venezuela has a strong alliance with Iran. In light of an escalation in the conflict that brings Iran into the fighting, Venezuela will not stand pat.

On 21 July, AP reported:
Protesters burned an Israeli flag Thursday outside the country's embassy in Venezuela and demanded an end to Israel's military offensive in Lebanon...

More than 2,000 protesters, including Venezuelans of Arab descent, marched through Caracas waving Lebanese, Syrian and Palestinian flags. Many were die-hard supporters of President Hugo Chavez, who has denounced the Israeli bombardments in Lebanon as a "genocide."

Dozens of protesters pumped their fists in the air and shouted "Viva Lebanon!" when one man held up a poster of Hezbollah leader Sheik Hassan Nasrallah.

Others raised a banner reading, "Stop the genocide by the Zionist killers!"

The demonstrators marched several kilometers (miles) from a city park in eastern Caracas to the Israeli Embassy, where protesters burned an Israeli flag.
Comrade Hugo Chávez responed scathingly to Apartheid Israel's attack on Lebanon, calling it "a true genocide." He added:
They are bombing entire cities... Where will this madness end? God only knows! It extends from Iraq to Lebanon and Palestine. Let’s hope it doesn’t spread further.

The most virulent, loud, and high-handed critics of North Korea are the same ones that, in view of Israeli aggression against innocent men, women and children, say nothing.
Chavez then attacked the duplicity of Sam's deep and strong alliance with the UN. Steven Mather reports:
In a direct swipe at the US, their recent veto of a UN resolution that demanded a halt to Israel’s offensive in Gaza came into the firing line. From there, he glided smoothly on to the subject of his government’s campaign to win a seat as a non-permanent member of the UN Security Council.

“They have stabbed the Middle East peace process in the heart, and we see a security council blocked by the power of the veto, that of the government of the United States especially."
Uncle Sam and Apartheid Israel love to play a double-game with the UN. Most of the time, it serves as an effective instrument in the service of their imperial agenda - UN Resolution 1559 is one example. But occasionally, in the rare cases when the UN condemns Apartheid Israel, Uncle Sam invalidates one of the few body's few productive actions with its veto.

Along with their European and UN lackeys, Uncle Sam and Apartheid Israel stand at one side of this global polarization. The imperialist powers ship weapons and fuel to Apartheid Israel to continue its blitzkrieg. They maneuver politically to entrap Lebanon into accepting a Zionist proxy occupation of UN troops. They condemn the capture of Zionist soldiers while ignoring the fate of the thousands of Arab prisoners languishing in Apartheid Israel's concentration camps and dungeons.

Opposing this imperial savagery, there is Resistance. The Palestinian Resistance has taken shape as a loose-knit collection of militias that attack tanks and bulldozers while firing rockets into Apartheid Israel. In Lebanon, Hizbullah resists the imperialist onslaught with rocket attacks and sophisticated military operations.

In both cases, the population has given them overwhelming support. Today's pro-war Financial Times reports that:
A poll published by the Beirut Centre for Research and Information found 85 per cent of Lebanese approve of Hizbollah’s abduction of two Israeli soldiers – an action which sparked the current wave of hostilities.
Just as the Lebanese, Venezuelan, and Iranian people have made a choice about which side to support, socialists here on Uncle Sam's Plantation must do the same.

They must decide between equivocation, refusing to support the poor and oppressed that are Resisting because they lack sufficient conviction to anti-imperialism.

As the rockets fly and as Apartheid Israel shows no signs of slowing down their genocidal blitzkrieg, vacillators who refuse to support either side will quickly find themselves swept up by events.

To see that Comrade Hugo is not among them is reassuring indeed.
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