Independent Media Center, Israel

Hands off Abnaa el-Ballad movement!%PM %02 %b %2003
author: In Defense of Marxism circle

The vicious campaign conducted by the Israeli media against this movement is just another stage in a process of escalation in the attack waged by the Israeli government on the Arab masses and the workers in Israel

The members and supporters of In Defense of Marxism circle, denounce the arrest of members in the leadership of Abnaa el-Ballad movement (the Sons of the country). We call upon all those who genuinely seek to defend the very basic democratic rights in this country, and first of all the Communist party, its youth movement and Hadash (the Democratic Front for Peace and Equality), by taking the lead for organizing united front actions in defense of Abnaa el-Ballad.

In spite of our well known disagreement with the nationalist views promoted by this movement, in spite of their self isolating politics, we believe that the current attack on Abnaa el-Ballad has nothing to do with their views; furthermore, the arrest of their leaders is only a part of ongoing campaign waged by the Israeli ruling class and the bourgeois media to outlaw parties and groups in Israel that express opposition to their oppression of the Palestinian people in the 1967’s occupied lands and inside Israel, and to their class war against the working class Jews and Arabs.

The vicious campaign conducted by the Israeli media against this movement is just another stage in a process of escalation in the attack waged by the Israeli government on the Arab masses and the workers in Israel. The persecution of Abnaa el-Ballad must unite in action all the forces with genuine commitment to democratic rights by launching a campaign in defense of Abnaa el-Ballad's freedom of speech.

We reject the Israeli ruling circles’ claim that the view of Abnaa el-Balad is illegitimate. Since when nationalist ideas are a crime in this country? It is no secret that in Israel there are right wing parties and movements that speaks loudly in favor of expelling the Arab masses from their homeland. One of these parties is represented in Ariel Sharon's government. Moreover, no one blocked the actions carried out by the settlers against the local Arab population. Criminal acts made by right wing extremists were not stopped, even after it was clear to anyone that the Israeli right wing is capable of doing everything, including bringing one of its activists to assassinate Prime Minister in order to materialize its program.

Recently, the Israeli parliament has passed in second and third reading a truly racist bill which prevents Arab families from uniting themselves in Israel's territory. Israel is moving rapidly toward confrontation with its Arab citizens; the Israeli rulers wish to divert the anger of many working class Israelis toward the capitalist system into nationalist orgy of bloodshed. Israel's rulers know very well how unstable is the situation, while the crisis of capitalism deepens; and the entire Middle East is on verge of social explosion following the war and the occupation of Iraq. They know that sooner or later, they will have to face the reality where a mass popular movement led by the working class could bring them down. Thus they want to create atmosphere of a so-called "Arab threat." This is why they wanted to outlaw Arab parties that are already represented in the Knesset, this is why they arrested leaders of the Islamic Movement, and this is why they have tried to create feelings of nationalism against the Palestinian Arabs in Israel by claiming that nationalist views amount to inspiring "terrorist actions."

After they failed in outlawing the National Democratic Assembly (Balad party) and the Arab Movement for Refoundation (Ta'al), they decided to target Abnaa el-Ballad as their next victims. This witch hunt is part of the attacks led by Bush et company against the social and democratic rights of the working masses every where.

We are standing in defense of Abnaa el-Ballad in spite of its sectarian character. We are calling to mobilize the workers' power in order to carry forward public campaign in defense of their democratic rights. This is not the time for sectarianism but for unity in the struggle against the attack on the democracy, even in its bourgeois form. Without broad and mass united front, we will face more attacks on our rights.

This is a combined attack; not only against the social services, the gains of the Israeli working class, the rights of the Israeli labor - but also against the very basic rights given to every citizen in a democratic society.

We are appealing to you to join us in building this united front immediately. We have to turn these attacks to a unified Arab-Jewish working class struggle in defense of our rights; to a struggle for Arab-Jewish workers' power.

Hands off Abnaa el-Ballad!

Defend the democratic rights.

Mobilize workers' power to defeat the aggressive capitalist attack on democracy and the workers' gains and rights!

For a socialist solution as the only way of out the crisis!

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