The conflict in Palestine is tragic in many respects - it seems eternal, and it has lasted a long time and seems to have no end. The whole ruling capitalist world including its mass media machinery creates extremely close attention, but very little is done to stop open barbarism that is about the super strong Israeli side that continually oppress and humiliate its weak counterpart, i.e., Palestinian semi-sate. However, the heavy price for these militaristic demos is normally paid by the masses, mainly from Palestinian side.
The complex and unsolvable problem of the Israeli-Palestinian question has taken different forms and content since the declaration of the state of Israel in 1948. The Israeli state has always applied regular and irregular warfare operations, through the extensive military force of mass destruction of not only human lives but also the entire infrastructure of the semi existing Palestinian social structures. It is in this context where regular and irregular warfare operation has the greatest potential impact and has become both the means and aims of the Israeli state to displace the objectivity of the Palestinian problem in terms of time and space: Millions of Palestinian masses who have lost their history, identity, lives and home to an alien militarist occupation power. These proletarian masses lack a class driven socio-political and organizational tools in struggling against the semi-imperialistic of the Israeli state in the region. In addition, decades of ideological dominance and political manipulation, i.e. naked nationalism, by the ruling classes have deeply damaged the class unity of Israeli-Palestinian masses. However, the military antagonism between the Israeli state and the semi – state of Palestine shall always remain as an inter-ruling class issue for Israeli-Palestinian proletariat and the rest of the proletariat in the region and the world.
The biggest challenge of the proletariat, internationally and regionally, is finding a way to understand the kernel of the Palestinian and Israeli conflict; Although, the crux and the kernel of this conflict is derived from the Israel-Palestine Problem. And the root cause analysis of the Problem needs to start from the struggle among two nationalist movements: on the one hand, the Zionist movement (and, since 1948, its embodiment, Israel), and on the other, the Palestinian national movement. A geopolitical environmental war zone was created and developed by the state of Israel to manage the violence and aggression embedded in Israeli-Palestinian conflict that was started at the end of 1st Imperialist World War in 1918. Historically, the conflict that began a century ago has been continuously updated since then. In general terms: it is a part of complex, unresolved problems bequeathed to the region of Western – British and French – imperialist Powers in the way each broke up and carved up the Ottoman Empire: After British and French imperialists divided the Middle East region of the defeated and collapsing Ottoman Empire among themselves, the ancient region had known as Palestine fall to the hands of the British as Palestine mandate in the course of creating a new regional map for the whole area.
The beginning of conflict
The roots of the conflict go back to the 17th century. The Jewish question arose in the European environment when the whole continent was moving to establish the socio-political structures suitable for further development and the dominance of the capitalist mode of production on a world scale. The emerging capitalist system in Europe was moving with high velocity of labor market towards the process of nation-state construction. The necessary construction process for its ideological and political apparatus of the nation-state accelerated through the industrial revolution in the background and the rise of the political elite of the bourgeoisie, particularly after the French revolution. The replacement of the pre capitalist system of production and its old or even ancient superstructures: The centralized Feudalistic system of monarchy-church state, with the capitalist superstructure based on nation-state identity triggered a new historical wave of assimilation problem in the Jewish communities in Europe. The assimilation question, coming during the rise of nationalism in Europe, included the extent to which each nation may integrate its Jewish citizens, and if not integrated, how should they be treated and the question solved.
The Jewish communities’ reaction, from its over class point of view, was Zionism as the solution to the twin challenges of Jewish identity of assimilation of the Christian and nationalist European environment and persecution by the European environment, in the all-pervasive nationalist climate of nineteenth-century Europe.
The nation-state building project of Zionism
Zionism as a modern political movement occurred in Russia in the 1880s. But the movement began in earnest in 1897 when the Hungarian Jewish leader Theodor Herzl convened the first Zionist Congress in Basle, in 1897. Political Zionism, a doctrine which, starting from the postulate of the incompatibility of the Jews and the Gentiles, advocated massive emigration to an underdeveloped country with the aim of establishing a Jewish state, developed as a response to an upsurge of anti-Jewish racism (anti-Semitic) in Europe at the end of the 18th century. In Western Europe, the formation of openly anti-Semitic political parties challenged the assumption of many middle-class Jews that they could simply blend into (or “assimilate” into) non-Jewish society. In the Russian Empire, where the most world Jewry lived and fell victim as the feudal order gave way to capitalist economic development. As feudalism collapsed, Jews lost the specific roles they had played as money lenders and organizers of commerce in the feudal economy. Forced out of the feudal economy, Jewish artisans and shopkeepers fell into competition with non-Jews (Gentiles). Meanwhile, capitalist development destroyed the artisan economy, turning artisans and crafts people into wage workers. These two processes–the destruction of the feudal economy and the undermining of the artisan economy–combined in less than 50 years to create a massive Jewish working class in Eastern Europe. These wrenching changes in the position of Jews in society impelled millions of Jews to emigrate from Eastern Europe. Those who stayed behind often faced pogroms, anti-Jewish riots. Taking advantage of rising anti-Semitic among the Gentile middle class and seeking to keep the Jewish working class divided from its Gentile brothers and sisters, Tsarist police stirred up pogroms against the Jews.
This atmosphere of despair and oppression stirred several responses in the Jewish population, among them with a growing nationalism. The Zionist variant was an absolutely new conception born of the socio-political context of Eastern Europe in the 19th century. For centuries, the idea of a return to “Zion” (i.e., The “Holy Land” in Palestine) occupied a significant place in Judaism, but this belief had no political significance. Jewish religious pilgrims immigrated to Palestine in the late 1800s to form religious communities, not to establish a state. Yet political Zionism had just that goal in mind. Nevertheless the nationalism and the state of political Zionism was quite different compared to the current nationalist movement of the late 19th and early 20th century. The Zionist- state was planned to build on two interrelated geopolitical principle of capitalism in an Imperialist era:
1- Detailed plan of colonization of Palestine:
The unthinking might, for example, imagine that this exodus would have to take its way from civilization into the desert. That is not so! It will be carried out entirely in the framework of civilization. We shall not revert to a lower stage; we shall rise to a higher one. We shall not dwell in mud huts; we shall build a new, and more beautiful, more modern houses, and possess them in safety.… We should there form a part of a wall of defence for Europe in Asia, an outpost of civilization against barbarism…. [Europe] would have to guarantee our existence. (1)
2- The Jewish nationalism, Zionism was seeking support and dependency of Imperialist powers with arms wide open prior to the initial start of colonization plan: Vladimir Jabotinsky, the founding father of the Zionist movement, wrote in 1923:
It is the iron law of every colonizing movement, a law which knows of no exceptions, and a law which existed in all times and under all circumstances. If you wish to colonize a land in which people are already living, you must provide a garrison on your behalf. Or else-or else, give up your colonization, for without an armed force which will render physically impossible any attempts to destroy or prevent this colonization, colonization is impossible, not “difficult,” not “dangerous” but impossible!… Zionism is a colonizing adventure and therefore it stands or falls by the question of armed force. It is important to build, it is important to speak Hebrew, but, unfortunately, it is even more important to be able to shoot-or else I am through with playing at colonization. (2)
In contrast, these two principles of Zionist project have defined the historic and political content of nationalist strategy/tactic for political emancipation of Jews in challenging the anti-Semitism of the European nation states, in the main, the Eastern Europe with the Russian Empire on the lead. Its modus operandi of massive immigration and land acquisition overseas and its colonization program was in keeping with the policies of the European colonial powers of the time. Its aim, as embodied in the Basle Program adapted by the first Zionist Congress, was to “establish a home for the Jews in Palestine.” This “home”-euphemism for a state- was to be established through massive immigration, land acquisition, and colonization. Contrary to the imperialist operation of major European capitalist power in the colonization process of Asian and African regions, the Zionist colonization project did not have any capitalistic nation state system, i.e., militaristic logistics and military organization, to proceed with the colonization task. Thus, it had to find imperialist powers that supported the occupation project in alignment with its own imperialist interest.
The Balfour Declaration’s design was to facilitate the (dated two November 1917) historical preparation of the project from the British’s imperialist point of view: “a wall of defence for Europe in Asia” (1), i.e., control of the geopolitical important area of energy sources of the becoming capitalist world order; the oil.
The historic background of Palestinian question
A short historiography on the area that was known as the land of Palestine with its Arab inhabitants are necessary to understand the objective reality of the Palestinian question in the historic context.
Since the usage of the term Palestine by Herodotus in 5th century BC to refer to the entire area between Phoenicia and Egypt (3), the land of Palestine has been populated by the people known as Palestinians. The area situated at a strategic location between Egypt, Syria and Arabia, and the birthplace of Judaism and Christianity. The region has a long and tumultuous history as a crossroads of religion, culture, commerce, and politics. The region was conquered and controlled through the time-lines of human civilization by numerous different Empires, i.e., Persian, Roman, Byzantine, Arab, Ottoman and finally British.
Despite the Islamization of the region after the Muslim conquest in the 630s A.D., the inhabitants of the land have been religiously diverse, from a historical point of view, always with Arab Muslim as its majority, living somehow peacefully with fellow Jews, Christians and Druze people.
The Muslim Arabs had wrested Palestine from Byzantium, in A.D. 637, with the help of disaffected Christian Arabs – for the Arabs had begun to settle Palestine long before the Muslim conquest. This was some 400 years before the Norman conquest of Britain, 100 years before the birth of Charlemagne, and 1000 years before the Mayflower touched the shores of the American continent. The Palestinians of today claim descent, not only from their forebears who defeated Byzantium, but also from the people who inhabited Palestine under Byzantium. These in turn were the descendants, ethnic layer upon ethnic layer and generation upon generation, of all previous inhabitants of the land, including the ancient Hebrews and their precursors. In other words, in Palestinian eyes, a Palestinian birthright to their country, Palestine, was as pristine as the birthright of any people in their own country. Despite the fact, the inhabitants of Palestine have been religiously diverse, from a historical point of view, always with Arab Muslim as its majority; they have been able living peacefully with fellow Jews, Christians and Druze people.
The transformation/cutover of Palestine: 1918-1948
When the Ottoman Empire unwillingly entered the First Imperialist World War (1914-1918) by joining the Central Powers (composed of Germany, Austria-Hungary, Bulgaria- Kingdom of Bulgaria- it had maintained an ancient system of economy: A set of contingencies undertaken by the Ottoman state to organize and mobilize its economy for primary revenue comprised booty from land expansion. The tributary mode of production operated on the agrarian production system, where the largest sector of the economy was the agricultural sector engaging an estimated 80-90% of the working age population. The surplus production in the agrarian production was collected through the taxation and treasury system of the Ottoman Empire, by the state of the government and the sultan.
In this connection, the inevitable, defeat, collapse and decomposition of the Ottoman Empire in the end of the First Imperialist world war was a logical outcome based on the Empire’s pre capitalist ancient socio-economic system and its disintegration process that began in the 18th century and merely intensified rapidly by imperialist intervention of French and British in the Empire’s Arabian and Balkan regions: After the guns fell silent, sharp knives came out. As Lenin wrote in Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, in which he argued that imperialism was a product of monopoly capitalism , as capitalists competed, conflicted and sought to increase their profits by extending into new territories where wages were lower and raw materials cheaper. (4)
Thus, victorious allies of WW1, based on a welter of wartime promises, military actions, secret agreements and treaties of Sevres and the Sykes -Picot (9) agreement, proceeded to carve up the Ottoman Empire, stretching from the Middle East to Central Asia to the Eastern Europe – the modern successor to the ancient Assyrian Empire. The huge conglomeration of territories and peoples that formerly comprised the Ottoman Empire was divided into several new client-states. The division of the Ottoman Empire’s Arabian region brought the creation of the modern Arab world. The League of Nations granted France mandates over Syria , Lebanon and granted the United Kingdom mandates over Mesopotamia (later Iraq) and Palestine, (later divided into Palestine and Trans Jordan). The Ottoman Empire’s possessions in the Arabian Peninsula became the Kingdom of Hejaz and the Sultanate of Nejd (today Saudi Arabia), the Kingdom of Yemen, and the Arab States of the Persian Gulf: Kuwait, Bahrain, Oman, Qatar and the United Arab Emirates.
Thus, the modern history of Palestine begins sadly with the British Empire’s dominant entry in the Arab region of the old Ottoman world. The socio-economics of the Palestine was an undeveloped agrarian production system, in connection with the Ottoman Empire’s pre capitalist mode of agrarian production system: The objective implication of this system of production on the level of social-political reproduction structure was if not completely, but the significant absence of capitalist attributes of class society: Absence of the bourgeoisie and proletariat class relations. This socio-political absence was clear in terms of the complete lack of conceptual and juridical availability of private ownership of land in general and agricultural land in particular; the land rights: The archaic land law where the Ottoman Empire state with the Sultan on the top was the unchallenged land owner. This pre capitalist land law with no clear land rights generated a socially and politically unprecedented chaotic situation for the Palestinian peoples in general and for the peasantry and agricultural labourer class in particular, when the course of building the Zionistic nation began with British Empire to rule over it by applying the Palestinian-mandate agreement. The Palestinian agro-social fabric falls into the social-political spiral of total crisis that was utilized maximally by the Zionist colonization project, facilitated by the British imperialist administration of the Palestine through the HMG: His Majesty’s Government’s (HMG) presence in Palestine provided assistance to Palestinians during the Mandate period (1918-1948).
The class structure of Palestine (1918-1948)
The class division and structure of Palestinian agrarian society, on the eve of the Zionistic colonization plan (1918-1948), had its roots long back in the history of five centuries in the Ottoman Turk’s agrarian socio-economical and political reproduction system. Over several centuries, the Palestinian Arab class structure became stratified as it did elsewhere in the Middle East. There were two major classes – the landed elite and the peasantry – and a very small middle class. Either one owned land and worked it or had it worked by permanent tenants or less permanent agricultural labourers.
The Ottoman’s Tanzimat land reform in early 17th was essentially meant to favour A) the Empire’s imbalance taxation and treasury system and B) the large absentee landlords, who were accumulating land at the expense of debt-ridden peasants, tenant farmers and rural labourers. The disintegration process of the Ottoman Empire had already begun in an unavoidable confrontation with the emerging dominant capitalist system of production and its uninterrupted world market expansionism.
Thus, beginning in the late nineteenth century, administrative change in the Arab provinces of the Ottoman Empire transformed the peasantry’s relationship to land: Tanzimat land reform. Ottoman reforms were aimed at increasing the amount of regional taxes generated from land use, revenue to be collected locally and sent to the Ottoman treasury. These changes caused the peasantry to fear the levying of new or increased taxes on previously unregistered lands. Perhaps more important, they feared recruitment into the Ottoman army if their names appeared on the tax rolls.
To avoid having their names placed on the tax/conscription rolls, some peasants asked notables to register their lands with the local governmental authorities. Peasants in perennial financial insolvency chose to pay off their creditors with land, trading accrued debts for the right to remain on the land that their families had been working for generations. Fear of government intrusion into their lives compelled peasant proprietors to rely increasingly but uncomfortably upon urban notables, who were by profession landowners, lawyers, local religious leaders, government officials, moneylenders, small entrepreneurs, and grain merchants.
In this connection, Rosa Luxemburg’s brief review of the Ottoman Empire’s situation at the end of the 19th century was still valid and descriptive of understanding the situation in Palestine from the perspective of the peasantry class and rural tenants and labourers in 1920s:
‘On the one hand, a permanent deficit arose in the peasant economy. This acquired a tangible expression in the usurer, who had become an organic element of the village community, and showed the internal festering of conditions like an abscess. Three percent monthly interest rates were a permanent phenomenon in the Turkish villages, and the regular epilogue to the silent drama of the village was the Proletarianization of the peasant, without forms of production being available in the country which would have enabled him to be absorbed into a modern working class, with the result that he all too often sank down into the lumpen-proletariat. These phenomena are further linked to the decline of agriculture, devastating famines and foot-and-mouth disease.
On the other hand, there was the deficit in the state treasury. Since 1854, Turkey had taken the road of endless foreign loans. The usurers of London and Paris operated in the capital just as the Armenian and Greek usurers operated in the villages.’ (5)
The arable land varied greatly in quality, but there existed some generic negative aspect generally affecting the peasantry effecting class in the production of agricultural output. Like the peasantry class in the rest of the Ottoman’s Arabian rural areas (later Iraq, Syria, and Lebanon…) the peasantry in Palestine lived at a level of bare subsistence. The reasons for rural economic stagnation or decline, in addition to ultimately relate to the Ottoman archaic agrarian land law, later on British governance and Zionist presence, were;
•Poor soil quality, drought, intense or sporadic rains, a long or severe sirocco, not enough knowledge or use of intensive methods of cultivation, lack of access to means of irrigation and mechanized equipment, insufficient secondary roads between villages and towns for crop transport, irregular marketing arrangements, dumping of Syrian and Egyptian wheat on the Palestine market, merger agricultural yields or complete crop failures, short-term rental agreements, insecurity in land tenure, and wide abuse and fraud in tax collections.
•The incentive to increase production was low, since a major portion of the agricultural yield inevitably ended up in the hands and pockets of others: the tax collector, moneylender, landlord, or other agricultural labourers who worked on either owner-occupied or tenanted land. In rare years of fair agricultural output, barely 20 percent of a cultivator’s gross yield remained after the others had taken their share.
•Until the late 1920s, lease payments have been usually in kind, from one-sixth to two-fifths of the gross yield. Rarely were leased agreements made for a period longer than one year, and usually they were made for only the winter or summer cultivating season, or for both seasons. Agricultural tenants were regularly moved from field to field by their landowners or estate managers, usually corresponding directly to the two or three-year crop rotations of Palestinian agriculture. Short-term lease agreements contributed to a widespread sense of personal insecurity and almost total reliance upon those who controlled land use and its distributions.
•However, two additional factors significantly contributed to tying the peasantry to perennial financial struggles: ceaseless indebtedness and a debilitating system of land use. Perhaps no single factor limited the economic development of the Palestinian peasant more than the Musha’s system of land ownership and land tenure. Its use throughout Palestine impeded agricultural output, retarded agricultural development, enhanced peasant indebtedness, led to rural insolvency, and generated village apathy and desolations. By contributing to the atomization of Palestinian society into village units, the musha system also hampered the development of Palestinian national integration and identity. In 1933 it was estimated that between 46 and 63 percent of the country’s 8,252,900 cultivable dunams were under some form of musha use.
•The central concept of the musha system was collective ownership or cultivation of common land that was periodically redistributed among various clans, families, or individuals. Repartition of the land was designed to ensure a measure of fairness in the quality and quantity of apportionment. In order to maintain the integrity of a land area, redistribution ensured that ownership or use would involve a whole village group rather than individuals or people outside the village. (6)
However, the total collapse of the Ottoman Empire’s rule over the Arabian Peninsula, including Palestine, in the end of the First World War did not in any way bring improvements to rural proletarian masses, peasants and tenants in their harsh living conditions. On the contrary, the external world of capitalist order has just started its unimpeded invasion of Palestine to launch its surplus capital export to the region and furthermore initial integration of the region into the world market. The change over from the Ottoman rule in the British one becomes turning point in a radical break-in procedure from the declining ancient agrarian mode of production: Where the decaying dominant over class used to confiscate the surplus labor and product of subordinated peasantry class through the application of the despotic superstructure of the Ottoman state apparatus.
To impose these changing procedures within Palestine and on the peasantry masses, three main factors internally converged had to operate in the same direction: The introduction of the capitalism as a system of production in ancient Canaan, where the first stratification and class society appeared millenniums ago and Torah, Bible and Koran were and are empirical evidence of the historical existence of dominant and subordinated classes in the class society; Raise of civilizations.
Mechanisms to implement the changes were, at least partially, in the state of operation prior to the total collapse of the Ottoman rule, but it needed to be completed:
•The Zionists colonization plan has been in the preparation process since the early 19th century, prior to the complete collapse of the Ottoman rule in the Arab region in 1918.
•The immediate implication of the British Empire’s direct role was to implement the Belford statement through the policies of the Mandate over Palestine. The Declaration was included in the text of the Mandate charter in 1920.
•The control of urban landowning interests over Palestinian peasants survived the implementation of the British rule in Palestine. Thus, the direct economic relation between the old Arab-Palestinian ruling class and the Zionistic colonizer, through buy and sell, off land in Palestine, resulted in an intensive dispossession and displacement of peasants and indigenous populations (1918 -1948).
Ironically, the objective reality of Palestinian peasant class and its consequently real situation were in antagonistic contradiction with the real world-capitalist system in Europe that was rapidly marching into Palestine to introduce the golden yoke of capitalism to the newly appeared Arab world; The establishment of bourgeois land rights in the rural area that meant real alienation of peasants, tenant farmers and rural laborers from the agricultural-land that they had access to food and self-sustenance for generations and centuries. This created the process of mass proletarianization drama that finalized by the operational force of changing mechanisms, mentioned above.
Introduction of capitalist property and land rights
From a world-historical standpoint, the history of capitalism begins with the transformation of land rights. In one sense, the modern concept of land rights denotes the establishment of bourgeois land rights in the countryside (leading to export-led commercial agriculture) and in the city as real estate.
The conceptualization and concretization of property ownership, i.e., Land right, took centuries, to confirm itself as an economic device within the capitalistic setup for creation and motion of the law of value as an abstract, but the dominant force of binding the socio-political fabric to economics of universal value oriented production: Surplus labor generating surplus product is transformed by the capitalist law of value to the surplus value that is realized and collected as the nominal rate of profit. From the onset of capitalist accumulation in the 14th century onwards in Europe, the property ownership or land right developed in accordance with the accumulation of capital in a permanent relationship with the historical course of economic growth in the capitalist system of production.
Thus, the massive socio-political transformations involved centuries of struggles for and against the establishment of bourgeois property rights in land and its usage. While the forms that this transformation took were complex and varied across time and space of the capitalist world-system, some salient features developed to functionalities and integrated the property rights as a recognizable aspect within the mode of production. The historic and unprecedented breakthrough in the question about integrating application of the property rights came through a successive process in the transformation of:
•A complex system of customary rights to land usage to legal and written titles to land ownership.
•The concept of property from jurisdiction over ambiguously defined areas to concretely defined (and enclosed) physical spaces.
•The rationalization of the use of such demarcated landed property as a form of capital and at the service of “primitive” and expanded capital accumulation.
•The increasing privatization of the earth’s surface through dispossession and displacement of peasants and Indigenous populations.
The complex global history of this process of transformation contained another major feature to function as the basis for the mass proletarianization of peasantry masses through destruction of existing non-capitalist market access to food and self-sustenance; The objective commoditization of property and land rights on a world-wide scale was beginning to take place practically after 1920s: Integration of the whole planet through the establishment of world market in connection to the movement of law of value where capitalist activities rationally can be organized.
The land rights developed as an embedded component in the historic process of capital accumulation, a period roughly between the 15th and the 19th centuries. In epochal period, the capitalist accumulation moved in accordance with main internal changing state in the mode of production: The ascendance and decline statues.
The history of primitive capital accumulation and the transformation of land rights include the violent confiscation of non-European lands and resources. Specifically, capitalist primitive accumulation included the separation of Indigenous populations from the land and the alienation of their customary (communal or tribal) rights to land usage either through massacre (white settlements) or enslavement (physical removal from ancestral or tribal land). Thus we may symbolically use the year 1492 as a symbolic expression of two expropriating movements one inward and one outward;
•On the one hand the beginning of the systematic expropriation of the Americas’ Indigenous populations by conquest, expropriation, and settlements.
•On the other hand, racialized land seizures and population displacements within Castilian Spain (in which the thirst for land accumulation was connected with the emerging transformation of land rights in the emerging capitalism as a world dominant system.
This broad primitive capital accumulation linked the historic transformation of land rights to the rise of industrial capitalism proper in the 19th century.
Imperialism in Palestine
The 19th-century imperialist reconfiguration of the world division of labor under British hegemony around the needs of the now dominant regime of industrial capitalism led to a reorganization of land use and land rights on a global scale. Reorganizing world trade in accordance with the law of value, Great Britain and its European competitors alike embarked on a massive global land-grab in their scramble for colonies. The colonial land grabs enforced various racialized and gendered regimes of forced labor as a way of constructing export-dependent monocultures that subsidized the reproductive needs of European labor and capital. The new incentive to expropriate whole nations for the expanding accumulation of profit and power vastly transformed communal, tribal, and peasant land rights in the colonial world. (7)
On the whole, the contraction of land rights was much greater than the expansion of land rights obtained via land purchases in after First World War context. As a consequence, a massive number of people who were involved in subsistence agriculture were expropriated and displaced. As formerly self-sufficient agricultural peoples were pushed into proletarianization, with the unemployment and refugee status as semi permanent societal perspective. The peasantry masses, land tenant and rural laborer who were Socio-historically exploited for their surplus labor by the Arab (Muslim) and Turk dominant classes for centuries, found themselves alienated from the land and agrarian production: Basic socio-politically determined substances for a living.
The imperialistic launch of the capitalist system in Palestine through property-land confiscation-rights, money based agricultural production, import of capital (constant/variable capital, particularly in agricultural production sectors) functioned as the first phase of the Zionists plan in startup of a complete new brand of a nation-state building; The first capitalization phase (1918-1948) contained two antagonistic but socio-politically integrated elements:
•Expulsion and displacement of Palestinian unwanted laborer, particularly peasantry and agrarian laborer
•Laying the foundation of a future Israeli Imperialistic client-nation state
The problem, Zionist state building in Palestine encountered, in the course of the first phase was that Palestine was an inhabited land. At the time of the Basle Program in 1897, the local Jewish community constituted less than 7 percent of the total population of the land. The situation was not much different in 1920s than 1897. (8) The majority of the population, 89-91 percent, was Arab in language, culture, and collective historical memory. Some 88 percent of these were Muslim, the remaining Christian. Thus, the situation had to be radically changed: through, in Maine, application of harsh and concrete agrarian political, economic mechanisms resulting in well calculated socio-historical outcomes: mass expulsion and displacement of Palestinian indigenous inhabitants, specifically unwanted peasantry related labor supply by replacing the Palestinian laborer with imported Jewish laborer from Europe.
In this context, from socioeconomic and historical point of view, the whole sequence of the capitalistic process of accumulation, from its ascendance to decline was taking place in a timeframe of three decades (1918-1948) in Palestine for the installation process of a capitalistic system in Palestine: Building the State of Israel. The empirical consequences with British and Zionism dominant intrusion in pre capitalist area of Palestine were to initialize primitive and expansion capital accumulation and at the same time establish the capitalistic mode of production on the colonized Palestine territory. The logical outcome of the colonization process was the destruction of the pre capitalist social fabric with agrarian production system in the center of it and peasantry class as the source of labor supply and surplus labor.
From Imperialistic point of view, a) capitalistic expansion and b) capitalization process were replacing the pre-capitalist production and reproduction of society that was left from the Ottoman Turks era. These two moments in the cycle of accumulation – realization and capitalization – were operational through, in the main, by massive land purchasing process and mass import of European/Jewish labor supply on the production ground. Politically the whole process of capitalist replacement of the ancient agricultural production system was going through British governance of Palestine by application of the Mandate period charter of Palestine.
British imperialism wanted to maintain a sphere of influence in the region to temper the presence of its imperialist rival, the French, while simultaneously ensuring that they remained close to their interests in the emerging oil regions and their holdings in the Suez Canal zone. The Palestinian Arabs were sceptical of the Mandate from its inception. The Balfour Declaration, which first pledged British aid for the Jewish homeland, was included in the Mandate charter. During the Mandate, the British promulgated administrative policies intended to recognize the Jewish perspective, as supposedly the Arab position. While the Zionist embraced the opportunities the British provided to participate in the government institutions, the Arabs boycotted any situation where Jews were given equal representation. The Arabs demanded proportional representation as they encompassed more than ninety percent of the population of Palestine when the Mandate began. Nevertheless, the pressure and network of the powerful World Zionist Organization (WZO) on the political leaders in London influenced the creation of policies that openly advantaged the Zionist movement.
In addition to the political pressure and influence in London and later in New York, the WZO organized and financed the immigration levels of Jews coming to Palestine and sales of the land to Jews. (10) The British used the rising conflicts between Arabs and Jews to more readily include Zionists in police and security force training.
Rise of the capitalistic semi-Israeli State
Thus British Imperialist’s economic and political interests in the geopolitical important area of the oil fields, later Middle East, determined essentially British policies during the Mandate period in favor of Zionist project: Immigration policies, land purchase rights and government positions afforded the Jews the opportunity to consolidate power in political institutions. The British included Zionist personnel in armed defense training, and denied knowledge of the weapons caches the Zionists were accumulating. The British policies, either directly through training for the police and security forces or indirectly by allowing weapons collection, prepared the Zionist forces better than the Palestinian for a violent conflict and the eventual war for the establishment of a Zionistic state. “It was British policy […] that was primarily responsible for providing the Yishuv time to grow, through immigration and land purchases, and time to establish quasi-governmental and military institutions.” (11) Thus, The political, governmental and military institutions and the social institutions created by the immigrants of the Aliyah (the emigration of Jews to Palestine) would become the organizational backbone for the Zionist community in the Palestinian Mandate and eventually the Israeli State.
Finally, the threat to Jewish survival from a German invasion of the Middle East prompted the Jews and the British to military collaboration: Britain did not impound arms from the Haganah and the British Army provided money, arms and training for an elite group of the Haganah (12) volunteers who would later become the nucleus of the Israeli Army. (13) In this context, the imperialistic policy of the British during the Mandate period prepared necessary institutional structures that would form the basis of the Israeli State in 1948.
Classes and struggles in Palestine:
The intensively aggressive transformation of Palestine, compared to the rest of the Arab territory of the decomposed Ottoman Empire, to the capitalist mode of production was of course challenged by the subordinated classes in the society. The peasantry class, agrarian laborer and urban workers (Haifa, Jaffa…) had to react against the rapid introduction of a capitalistic set of organizing the reproduction in the social system. They were in the front line of attacks from the emerging Zionistic capitalist class in the forms of losing their sources of incomes, i.e., employment or destruction of non-market access to food and self-sustenance, in case of peasants and agrarian laborer. The proletariat as a whole was paying the price for the inter-class struggle that was actually taking place in the Jewish capitalist oriented ruling elite and the semi-feudalist, pre capitalist ruling class in Palestine. Contrary to other Arab territories, Lebanon, Jordan, Syrian…, the old ruling class was facing the total loss of political ground to capitalist Zionist dominance. As a result, the old ruling class had to fight an inter class struggle for its socio-political survival: The decaying pre capitalist ruling class in Palestine was witnessing its historic vanishing. It should be terrified by the matter of having no territorial ruling framework, i.e., nation-sate, in order to exploit labor supplying classes, secure its class interests and rule over the emerging Palestine as the ruling elite. It was in this context that the nationalist movement of Palestinian Arabs was born. On the other Arabic regions, the decaying ruling class could with some assistance from a ruling imperialist power in the region transform its class rule by adapting and changing its class nature as a part of the dominant capitalist class. This was not an option for the Palestinian ruling class of the time considering how the British imperial rule during the Mandate period and Zionism’s capitalistic seizure of the region were proceeding with the unstoppable plan of building Palestine as a Jewish homeland.
The tragic-comic episodes of nationalist movements were appearing in the shape of Jewish and Arabic forms: Former with no land of its own and the latter without capitalistic means. In the social-historical context of 1920s, the Palestinian-Arab nationalism was ideologically and socio economically suffering from the historic backwardness of its pre capitalist existence: In addition to complete lack of capitalistic social structures, the ruling elites were almost broken by the remaining traditional structures from the clan and tribal social functions. The Palestinian ruling elite’s historically objective deficiency, by belonging politically to the agrarian social economics of tribally organized system, could not allow it to confront the most developed and advanced capitalistic plan of Zionistic colonization.
When it reached its highest form of political organization, such as the Muslim Congress in 1932 (13), it was ideologically incapable in presenting a theoretical, political and practical perspective: All they wanted was to stop the time or turn the clock back to the Ottoman era.
In contradiction to the Arab’s socio-historical and ideological disability to manage the political situation, the Zionist movement could drive a general and clear plan on how to set up a nation state in the middle of nowhere: Of course, the Zionist movement as a genuine capital project was equipped with the virtualized hand of the financial capital: the WZO, Rothschild foundation, the Palestine Jewish Colonization Association (PICA) in 1923…, and total assistance of the imperialist world led by the British Empire. The Zionist plan from very inception was based on all the achievements of the capitalist mode of production in sphere of institutional, organizational, technological, political and ideological gains. This was expressed Zionistic unified hegemony despite the existing different orientations in the movement; from the most extreme Libertarians on the Right to Socialist and Communists on the Left. They needed to establish a capitalist establishment and integrate it from the very beginning to imperialistic structures of the capitalist production set. However, the capitalist system runs essentially on the law of value -Marxian law of value based on labor theory- for its cycle of accumulations. This requires, as a controlled mechanism by capitalist class who operate the political and legal system in accord with the dictates of the capitalistic economy. The national, state, constitutional government and the parliamentary system have been needed and produced to meet the political demands of capital accumulation cycles. These requirements were clearly understood and absorbed by the leading political elite in the Zionistic movement, as a future perspective for Zionistic state building. In order to build a solid Israeli state from starch, the Zionist ruling class had in the early stage of colonization realized that a labor market with mixed Arab and Jewish labor supply did not allow a solid unified national state to stand against the hostile neighbouring Arab states. Moreover, it was next to impossible for the ruling Zionists elite to succeed in the organizing emigration of Jewish labor supply to Palestine and holding them to Eretz Yisrael, in competition with the cheep Arab labor supply in the colonized labor market: The use of Arab labor could create a typical colonial society, exploiting cheap, unorganized indigenous labor, and would hamper further Jewish immigration.
The ruling elite of Zionist movement realized very early the use and role of Jewish labor supply in the process of capitalist accumulation and construction of appearing new Zionist social fabric. The movement launched sets of social-economically organizational forms borrowed from the capitalistic world to organize the labor power and politically control it;
Histadrut, Zionistic organization of trade unions , established in December 1920 during the British Mandate for Palestine: The main task was to organize the production of surplus labor supply by exclusion of the Arab laborer and workers from the labor market and functioned as a social political platform in the construction of the Zionist state.
The kibbutz, the co-operative settlement based on self-labor and motivated by Zionist ideals. (14) The collective self management of the extraction of surplus labor and surplus value for the maintenance of accumulation cycle; with enhanced dedication to the national cause. In addition, the Kibbutz the same as Histadrut was socio-political organization to exclude the Arab proletariat from the Zionist labor market. While the first kibbutz experiments started around 1905, the “inchoate cooperativism was reinterpreted as ideologically grounded collectivism” only retrospectively. The kibbutz had become the trail blazer of colonization due to its success in bypassing the threat of labor market competition from Palestinian Arab workers and due to its function in the realization of the national possession of the land. (15)
With tools, such as Histadrut and the Kibbutz, designed to grantee the movement of law of value and build a national state to suppress eventual class antagonisms, the nationalist Israeli state was taking its form. The labor movement captured the ethos of the Zionist movement – the pioneer settlers – which constituted the political elite up to the declaration of Israeli state in 1948 and its continuation for decades. However the project of colonization overshadows any other concerns, including class concerns, therefore the real assignment of the Zionist labor movement was not the protection of workers or the attainment of socialism, but rather “to organize Jewish labor for the Zionist cause”. (16)
In this interaction between the ruling and subordinated classes in the Zionist movement, nobody vitalizes the process of nationalistic capital accumulation and at the same time state building as David Ben-Gurion: Who was organized and raised in and by the immigrant labor movement. His political life presents the complex phenomenon of two distinctive social classes -one dominant and one subordinated, closely involved with one another in building the national state and yet in essential class features separate. In other words, David Ben-Gurion becomes a concrete manifestation for Jewish proletariat’s rationalization, reification and alienation labor process in the state building period from 1918 to 1948. While Zionism’s perspective could encapsulate the whole period in capitalist nation-state building from scratch – primitive accumulation towards imperialistic accumulation – in the course of colonization time, 1918-1948. The real state building becomes Jewish proletariat’s objective task in losing itself and class interests and identity to a nationalistic ideology of Zionist project; Thus, Zionism articulated the quest for a synthesis of working class nationalism with an universal historic project. The foundation in the cooperative movement, and the theoretical formulation signalled the beginnings of the appropriation of the Histadrut and the kibbutz for “socialist” ideology (an ideological evolution fully accomplished only by the Third Aliya). It is a case study for George Lukacs‘ History and Class Consciousness in a rewind mode: When the total control of the social life through the bourgeois concept of the law of value institutes foundation of real being. Whereas the political organizations, workers network, were abolished and integrated into the state and social-building structures, the colonizing bodies of Zionism and its labor wing continued their independent existence and carried on their exclusionary tasks.
Thus, the Zionist quest started to make a synthesis of working class nationalism with an universal historic project of the Jewish national home. The foundation in the cooperative movement, and the theoretical formulation signalled the beginnings of the appropriation of the kibbutz for socialist ideology (an ideological evolution fully accomplished only by the Third Aliya). (8)
Proletarian class in Palestine
However, the Zionist movement, as a modern articulation of capitalistic program for Jewish nationalism, inevitably had brought into existence the new class – the modern proletariat in Palestine: A class as main source of labor supply with a potent political capacity of encompasses an universal liberation from all prevailing forms of oppression and exploitation. The political capacity of the proletariat sprang from its objective position within bourgeois society.
Thus, the significant socio-economic changes took place as a result of Zionist intrusion in the area, after the Ottoman era came to an end . Some sections inside the Jewish immigrant settler, labor supply, workers in urban areas, began to resist the crashing dominant rule of the Jewish nationalism, i.e., Zionism. The most of proletarian, part of the Jewish settlers as labor supply of the Zionist movement were originally familiar or influenced by socialist movement or ideas from their past homeland, back in Europe. The proletarian socialist reaction within the Jewish settlers created the internal Jewish dispute: The Zionist/anti-Zionist divide reflected the socio-political characteristics of the emerging reality inside the settler-dominated Jewish society – the Yishuv. Beside this internal divide, glimpses of real proletarian movement were galvanizing a different political outlook within the dominant nationalistic environment imposed by the anti proletarian politics of Zionism.
In this connection, “the railway men were among the first industrial workers in Palestine to organize themselves: an organization of Jewish railway workers was established as early as 1919, while Arab railway workers began to evince interest in trade unionism soon thereafter and would go on to play a key role in founding and leading the Palestinian Arab labor movement. It was, moreover, in large part the interaction of Jewish and Arab railway workers that first compelled the Zionist labor movement and the various left-Zionist political parties, as well as the largely Jewish, but anti-Zionist communists, on the one hand, and various forces in the Arab community on the other, to confront, both theoretically and practically, the question of relations between the Jewish and Arab working classes.” (17)
Thus, in the midst of all the chaos set up through imperialistic and Zionistic colonization project, the class question was emerging as generic attribute of the rising capitalist mode of production, the antagonistic relationship develops between labor and capital: The antagonism was appearing as secondary by-products of conflicts over substantive political questions of nationalism, which was conducted by the Jewish and Arab ruling elite. In this connection, the foundation of the Palestinian Communist Party (PCP) took part in debates the revolutionary way out from the imperialistic chaos in 1919.
The Palestine Communist Movement
From a proletarian viewpoint, the way in which Zionism defined the Jewish question was challenged from inception by the 2end international and especially its Russian Social Democratic party. Perhaps, it is necessary to capture briefly the 2end internationals and the Bolshevik’s, view on the question of Zionism, Jewish nationalism from early 1900s.
The history on the eventual question of Zionism started with the dispute between the RSDLP and the Jewish Bund during the RSDLP’s second congress in Brussels and London in August 1903.The creation of the Jewish proletariat, a working class in Poland and Russia gave birth to the Bund – short for the General Jewish Workers’ Union of Lithuania, Poland and Russia (Algemeyner Yidisher Arbeter Bund in Lite, Poylin und Russland) founded in October 1897 in Vilna.
The Bund was seeking to integrate itself to the RSDLP and the socialist International, especially since a basic platform of the RSDLP was opposed to all forms of anti-Semitism. The critical point in the negotiations was the issue of nationalism, for the Bund had Zionist/nationalist leanings. Lenin’s response: while the communists support nationalist movements, especially when they express class struggle, nationalism should never usurp that struggle. In the end, the Bund was unable to accept that argument, so they decided not to join. Later, of course the Bund formally rejoined the RSDLP when all its factions reunited at the Fourth (Unification) Congress, 4th_Congress_of_the_Russian_Social_Democratic_Labour_Party in Stockholm in April 1906, with the support of the Mensheviks. However, the RSDLP, Bolsheviks with Lenin continued to steer the crucial course of debate that radically rejected both anti-Semitism and Zionism as anti proletarian politics.
It is important to note that Lenin formulated his implacable opposition to Zionism or the Jewish nationalism in adopting a completely consequent and complete materialistic standpoint drove from the proletarian revolutionary politics: the unity and solidarity of the proletarian class in confronting the bourgeoisie; “Instead of trying to draw the Jewish and the non-Jewish workers closer together, the Bund embarked on a policy of weaning the former away from the latter.” (18) Despite the fact that the RSDLP’s and Lenin’s correct standpoint against Jewish nationalism was a proletarian historic lesson, on the whole it was at odds with the 2end International, RSDLP and specially Lenin’s view on the socialistic support of the nationalist movements: as he used to argue especially when these movements expressed class struggle, and nationalism should never usurp that class struggle.
However, Bolshevik’s and Lenin’s coherent and consistent stand against the Jewish nationalism/Zionism issue was at odds with his theoretical and political view, defense and analysis on the question of self- determination of nations was not “infeasible” or “illusory”, but it was theoretically obsolete and practically it had to be rejected: Considering achievements were required within the framework of the capitalistic mode of production through the imperialistic reproduction of the world market. Changes in the socioeconomic and political spheres were shaping the whole planet in an irrevocable set. The internal and external limits of the existing capitalist markets exacerbated the mainstream problem of capital realization; the breaking link between capital accumulation and the falling rate of profit. Ironically, Lenin’s work in Imperialism a highest stage of capitalism, laid the foundation to understand the changing state in the world capitalist system of production. Declining era of capitalism and imperialism reformed the whole of capitalism in a way that the Center/Periphery definition and relation of the capitalist world holds the whole planet under the dynamic control of the law of value: Driven from labor theory. The law of value systematically synthesis the labor and capital relation within the labor market domain in order to sustain the dominant and the subordinating relation between the capitalist and the proletarian classes and finally it maintains the uneven and injustice relation forced by the Center’s objective concentrated capital on a periphery that is so-so-historically integrated into the Center’s reproduction system.
However, a revolutionary criticism on the national question -right of all nations to self-determination came from Rosa Luxemburg. Prior to the RLSDP and Bund history, she resolutely opposed the resolution submitted by the PPS (the Polish Socialist Party) on the issue of if Polish independence should be supported, at the 1896 London Congress of the Second International. The following year several young Polish exiles in Zurich, including Rosa Luxemburg, split off precisely on this point and set up the Social Democracy of the Kingdom of Poland (SDKP). Relative to the issue of the nationalist movement, Rosa Luxemburg elaborated a systematic critique of the national question: In a series of articles on the national question and autonomy, which appeared in Luxemburg’s Cracow magazine, Przeglad socialdemokratyczny, in 1908-1909: Luxemburg worked out her most comprehensive statement in six lengthy articles, which she entitled “The Problem of Nationality and Autonomy.”
The exit of Luxemburg’s adherents from the famous Russian Social- Democratic Congress occurred not on the organization but on the National Question. It is true that she wrote against Lenin on the question of organization, but that was after the Congress, and, again, during the 1917 Revolution. The point here is that, although she did not attend the 1903 Congress, she joined the party in 1906, even though the famous “Point 9” of the party program on self-determination remained exactly what it had been at the 1903 Congress.
This sparked theoretically historical debates between Luxemburg and Lenin for the period of time prior to the October revolution. As Trotsky formulated it: ‘Lenin for many years stubbornly fought – most particularly against Rosa Luxemburg – for that famous Paragraph nine of the old party program which formulated the right of nations to self determination.’ (19) Actually, it was the national question that prevented Luxemburg from joining the RLSDP until 1906.
•The outbreak of World War I deepened her belief that internationalism and “nationalism,” including the question of self-determination, were absolute opposites: Thus, she completed her dialectical critique on the national question (1908-1909), in the Junius Pamphlet (The Crisis of the Social Democracy): What Luxemburg elaborated theoretically in her earlier debate articles on the national question, now she was substantially stating that;
•In the era of rampaging imperialism, there can be no more national wars. National interests can serve only as a means of deception of betraying the working masses of the people to their deadly enemy, imperialism…
•As long as capitalist states exist, i.e., so long as imperialistic world policies determine and regulate the inner and the outer life of a nation, there can be no ‘national self-determination’ either in war or in peace.
Of course it would be mistaken to conclude this as an end to the point of self-determination of nations in the party program of the 2nd and even the 3rd International. The bald assertion that the right of nations to self -determination demanded, as a revolutionary potential, a broadening of the very concept of a philosophy of revolution had the deep roots in the 2nd and subsequently in the 3rd International. The theoretical, empirical and historic lessons would be necessary to prove the invalidity, erroneous and calamity of such policy in trajectory from the 2end to the 3rd International.
Zionism/Palestine and 3rd International
Atrocities in the First Imperialist World War through the mass destruction, killing and unprecedented crimes against human societies and life in general, i.e., The total barbarism of the War resulted in weakening of political and military structures of the ruling classes in Europe. “Shamed, dishonored, wading in blood and dripping with filth, thus capitalist society stands.” (20) This caused a change in the balance of class forces between proletariat and the capitalism. The proletarian political reactions, in the forms of revolutionary waves, swept through Europe and involved the major part of the proletarian masses worldwide. The volcanic proletarian revolution in Russia stopped the imperialist war and consequently inspired or initialized a chain reaction around itself. However the Russian proletariat and the Communist International had only recently embarked on the lengthy and arduous task of dealing with the question of revolution in a single country: that is to say how to proceed with a proletarian revolution isolated and surrounded by the entire imperialist world: so down counting for the end of October revolution had to begin after its tremendous victory helped and led by the revolutionary Bolsheviks.
Thus, the 1917 October Revolution and the subsequent establishment of the Soviet Union created an enormous impetus for the international communist movement. In 1919 the Third Communist International was founded in Moscow as a Soviet initiative to assist and guide the world revolutionary movement. Its predecessor, the Second International, had ceased to exist during World War I, as many of its constituent member parties chose-contrary to their prewar stated intent- to support their “own” imperialist countries in that war. Unlike the Second International, the Third International was exclusively made up of communist parties; in fact, assuming the name “Communist” was a requirement for membership. Thus, whereas the Second International had consisted of “socialist” and “social democratic” parties, some of which were even ruling parties in their countries, the Third International’s members were mostly clandestine parties. Furthermore, in contrast to the Second International, many of whose European member parties regarded the colonial world as politically “immature,” incapable of grasping the tenets of socialism, and indeed likely to benefit from colonial (though “socialist”) rule so as to raise the political level of the “natives,” the Third International was characterized by it’s thoroughly anti-colonial and anti-imperialist outlook. This was apparent in its political program, adopted at its first congress on four March 1919, which vowed to “support the exploited peoples of the colonies in their struggle against imperialism.” (21)
The Communist Party of Palestine
Amazingly, the waves of proletarian revolution in Russia reached through the Jewish settlers/immigrants and labor force to Palestine: The historical determinism brought misery and signs, although weak, of future to this crossroad of the ancient and modern imperialistic world.
The establishment of the 3rd International precipitated ideological struggles over the nature of the “socialist revolution” and eventually splits in many of the old socialist parties, with left wings breaking away to form new parties that affiliated themselves with the 3rd International. This was the case of the PCP, which emerged from a split within the Labor Zionist Poale Zion movement. Already in 1919 a left-wing in the Palestine section of that movement broke away to form the Mifleget Poalim Sozialistit (Socialist Workers’ Party), which, while still considering itself Zionist and attending the Poale Zion World Congress in 1920, applied for 3rd International’s membership. This was rejected because of the party’s “nationalist nature,” its unwillingness to adopt the name “Communist Party,” and its refusal to denounce Jewish immigration into Palestine. The Comintern reflected clear political line on the nature and role of the British Empire and Zionist movement in Palestine: The formulations and arguments assembled the agenda for communist policies towards Palestine, in the Congress of the Peoples of the East held in Baku in September, 1920. The Baku Congress argued that Britain was “acting for the benefit of Anglo-Jewish capitalists,” and drove a wedge between Arabs and Jews. It drove “Arabs from the land in order to give the latter to Jewish settlers; then, trying to appease the discontent of the Arabs, it incited them against these same Jewish settlers, sowing discord, enmity and hatred between all the communities, weakening both in order that it may itself rule and command.” (22)
But after disintegrating into several factions under the pressures of persecution by the British Mandate authorities, the two largest of the splinter groups merged in 1923 (22) and, after protracted negotiations with the Comintern leadership, the new party was granted Comintern affiliation. (23) In March 1924, the group presumed the name “Palestine Communist Party,” (22) and, after endorsing the Comintern charter, became its official representative in Palestine.
However, the foundation of the PCP coincided with the termination of the revolutionary wave in Europe, particularly in Germany. The 3rd international led by the Bolsheviks (Russian Communist Party) had already ended in the survival phase. With the resignation of revolution in the West, the Comintern turned its sights towards the east. Initially in anticipation of advancement of the revolutionary wave in West, the 3rd international lunched the new perspective for revolution in the East. (26)
The demographic characteristics of the PCP reflected the reality of the emerging settler-dominated Jewish society and Jewish militants. However, the embryo to the future PCP found itself, prior to its foundation, the impossible task of carrying out Comintern political orientation into a political environment in Palestine that was rising on Arab and Jewish nationalist perspective: Comintern line focused on support for “any national revolutionary movement against imperialism,” and on mobilizing the masses in an “anti-imperialist united front” for national liberation. Communists of European origins were supposed to assist the local proletariat to organize, without forming their own parties. (26) That was the foundation for the dispute over the policy of indigenization, known in the local context as Arabization.
What Comnitern did not want to see was the anti-proletarian nature of Arab nationalism: The anti-colonialism of the nationalistic movements in the East was mostly a defensive response to the complete collapse of pre-capitalist socioeconomic and political formations as a direct result of the Imperialistic capitalist takeover of the entire East. It is true, some social or class strata in those emerging semi nation-states from the redrawn map of the East, in general, such as, petty bourgeois layer, bourgeoisie intellectuals and some layers of the old ruling class, who had lost their class position/identity were both choked and inspired by the revolutionary events in Europe, particularly the proletarian revolution in Russia. However, this attitude was dependent on the inner dynamism of proletarian revolution and its scope of political role and movements. Once the bourgeoisie managed to stop the mainstream proletarian revolutionary movements in Europe, the anti colonialist/nationalist movements in the East displayed their true class colors by adapting open anti working class or anti communist political guidelines from the top of the pyramid to the bottom. Thus, when Trotsky and Zinoviev criticized that “the C.C., C.P.S.U. and the Comintern have upheld and continue to uphold a policy of “support” for the national bourgeoisie in China” (27) in 1927, they forgot to mention this support policy was built on initial Comintern line in the East: “anti-imperialist united front” for national liberation where figures such as Reza Khan (Shah) in Iran, Ataturk (in Turkey)… were considered as characteristics of the national bourgeoisie that had to be supported. (28)
In this context, the Socialist Worker’s Party (SWP) would splinter into a number of factions denounced, her mother party, Ahdut Ha’avoda for what it saw as that party’s abandonment of class struggle, its links to the revived Socialist International, its cooperation with British imperialism, and its alliance with the Jewish bourgeoisie, manifested in its participation in the Zionist Organization. In contrast, the SWP saw itself as providing a revolutionary socialist, but also Jewish and still Palestine-oriented alternative to the reformism of Ahdut Ha’avoda, a position that might be described as “Bolshevik-Zionist.” However, the anti Zionism of Zionist SWP would soon become untenable:
•The fact that there was no real difference between the communist “Yishuvist” and the Labor Zionist positions, which both justified colonization by the “progress” brought to the “natives”.
•The Comintern idealistic insistence on the PCP to enforce the impossible task of Arabization process, in order to create a mass proletarian party.
In addition, the Arab nationalism was not a concrete subject in itself, given the absence of any real social, economic, or political basis for unity among the Arabic-speaking peoples. As for Palestinian Arab nationalism, it too was essentially inauthentic. Its demands-opposition to Jewish immigration and settlement and to the Balfour Declaration-were entirely negative, a reflection of the fact that it was not a genuinely popular movement with roots in the indigenous working masses Rather, it was a nationalism designed to serve the interests of the Palestinian Arab large landowners, moneylenders, and clerics, who wanted to perpetuate their domination and exploitation of the Arab peasants and workers.
Ironically, those SWP fractions or elements who just left Jewish nationalism/Zionist socialism to join the Comintern line of internationalism, in search, for a revolutionary answer to the problematic of Zionism/Palestine, had compelled to accept the Arab nationalism – national liberation as a solution that was articulated by the Comintern. After ruling capitalist class in Germany with unrivalled leadership of the SDP defeated the German revolution, 1918-1919, the Comintern aware of the prospect of revolution in Europe adopted a more flexible set of united front tactics which included cooperation with Social Democratic Parties if it served the Comintern’s strategic goals. Thus, the revolutionary tendency that was broken from the SWP to join the Comintern, for revolutionary directives, was facing the Comintern’s disability in revolutionary assistance, which accompanied by the process of retreat of revolution in Russia.
By the year 1924 the foundation of the PCP coincided with that the prospect of revolution had already disappeared completely and the Comintern started to move towards establishing itself as a powerful force in the international relations. Of course, this was in full synergy with the ongoing battle between revolution and counterrevolution inside the isolated and surrounded red Russia by the Imperialist powers. Hence, the whole process of building the PCP was reflection of the tragic transformation of Bolshevism and the Comintern into anti proletarian tools where the Russian Communist Party directing toward every independent expression of opinion by the other affiliated Communist parties: As Clara Zetkin, who wrote to Jules Humbert-Droz, a Swiss Communist and an adherent to the Bukharin line, that the Comintern had become “a dead mechanism that swallows orders in Russian and issues them in different languages.”(28)
In 1924 the Fifth Comintern Congress stressed that it was essential “always and everywhere” to pursue the united-front-from-below tactic, and allowed for the possibility of discussions with Social Democratic leaders.
While the Comintern and the PCP were setting up an organizational presence not in Palestine, even in other areas, such as, Syria, Egypt…, the antagonism among Arabs and Jews was gathering storm of nationalist and communal conflict between the Zionists and the Palestinian Arabs to burst over religious rites and symbols. In the background, nationalist of both communities were organized and preparing for eventual self-examination: “In the increasingly tense atmosphere that prevailed in Jerusalem, both sides found ample provocation in the actions of the other. The Supreme Muslim Council under al-Hajj Amin al-Husayni goaded the Jews by suggesting that it might use the stones of the Wailing Wall to construct a highway. Al-Hajj Amin also played on Arab sensitivities by accusing the Jews of a plan to seize the entire Temple Mount area. On the other hand, Muslim fears were fed by the militant tone of the Zionist press and by the actions of the Revisionist wing of the Zionist movement, led by Jabotinsky. On August 16, a group of Revisionists marched to the Wall, whereupon they held ‘an anti-Arab demonstration, with loud demands for [Jewish] ownership of the wall and the taking of an oath to defend it at all costs…’ (29)
The outbreak of countrywide clashes in August 1929 exposed the PCP’s ignorance of the growing nationalist sentiments among the masses of both communities. The Comintern used that opportunity to push forward Arabization in a decisive manner: Throughout the 1920s, it called on the Communist Party to transcend its settler origins and recruit Arabs as members and leaders, to allow it to play an active role in the national movement. On the contrary, to the Comintern policy and persuasion in supporting and engagement in the national -liberation- movement paved the way for the psychological mechanism whereby militant proletarians become progressively identified with the collective national identity and organized accordingly. In this way, the proletarian masses are totally, in a political sense, alienated from their own class identity and unity. This disastrous policy means declassifying of the proletariat, i.e., labor force, as independent class, which is against the ABC of class struggle on every level. In addition, the illusion of the nationalist movement ignores inter woven binding between Imperialism and Nationalism in the era of capitalist decline.
Although, the PCP’ founding was as a whole a proletarian response to the problem of Zionism/Palestine; however, it did not content sufficient revolutionary capacity of outline a revolutionary perspective to answer the epochal question of Palestine caused by the new age of Imperialism in the Arab world: The capitalistic mapping of the future Middle East organized basically around the labor division in the social fabric to meet the needs and requirements of regional and world system of production. Contrary to the policy of the Comintern to stick to nationalist movements (national-liberation or self-determination…) the existing and emerging proletarian class (urban-rural workers, “landless” peasants) had to search for a new horizon, namely the strategy aimed to radicalize proletarian masses (Jewish, Arab…) and push them beyond imperialism/nationalism dilemma.
The revolt of 1936
As it was discussed above, the intrusion of a new capitalist world in Ottoman’s old and decaying world began prior to the World War I. The signs of change from subsistence to market economy began to come during the Ottoman period, with the commercialization of agriculture that made arable land a sought-after marketable commodity for the traditional landed aristocracy and the new stratum of urban capitalists, the ‘new commercial and financial bourgeoisie in the coastal cities, which consisted mainly of Europeans or European protégé’s, Jews, Lebanese and Palestinian Christians. “The fallahin’s emergency situation at the end of the 1870s, due to the war and the poor harvests brought about a wave of sales… of which dealers and moneylenders especially profited.” (29)
However, the real transition to capitalism had to take place during British rule in the region through the 1920’s aggressive insertion of capitalist means in the production field, i.e., financialization and commercialization of urban and rural societies through Zionist capital overflow in the region. Seizures and struggles within Palestine of 1920s and early 1930s were only scratching the surface of a volcanic antagonism rooted in the social and nation building practice that was galvanized by the Zionist project of making nation home. Early on, Jews and Arab Muslims ended up in sociopolitical clashes resulting from Arab’s antipathy for Zionism and the British rule which was nurtured by fears generated by the dramatic increments of Jewish immigration and land acquisition. However, beneath nationalistic and religious i.e., ideological, confrontations between Jewish and Arab population, the real changing process of socio-economic organization of Palestine was appearing, not gradually but quickly. The pre capitalist agrarian economic foundation of Ottoman period was not transforming to the new system of production, it was actually vanishing and along with that the old social organization and the classes belong to it: the peasantry and semi feudal over classes.
While the commercialization of agriculture and the new mercantile bourgeoisie that had emerged with it during the late Ottoman period prepared the way, the influx of Zionist capital completed the process of change that ensured the elimination of pre-capitalist landlords and the traditional peasantry.
In contrast to what occurred in early nineteenth-century Europe, where the transformation process of land into a capitalist tool for the creation of wealth created the great mass of the rural population that had in some way to be transformed, at least in part, into freely mobile wage-workers in the growing non-agricultural sector of the economy. (96)
The socio-historically this was not the case for the peasant class in Palestine: the capitalism as a system of social reproduction was replacing the whole system of pre capitalist production in Palestine, as in other parts of Arab regimes: Syrian, Iraq, and Lebanon…. No social- economic transformation, as a general rule in early 19th century Europe, was possible any more: The capitalist accumulation had reached a stage of self-expansion in materializing itself became only logical through the establishment of a dominant capitalist world market. The evolution of capitalism was set to commercialize its global dominance by reaching the imperialist sate of operation: The construction of core and periphery relation within the socio-economically and politically division of the whole planet and setting up a capital market controlled and run from the core of the system. The modern international system and globalization could be understood within the imperialistic practices hegemony and inequality. In short, the Zionistic capitalist organization of Palestine was perhaps concretization of Lenin’s imperialist theory, in a peculiar way, where the central aspect was the export of capital.
Thus, the status of the fellahin of Palestine, the peasant class, comprised over two-thirds of the indigenous Arab population horribly shocked from a humanitarian point of view, but it was a logical side of introducing the capitalist system to shatter the pre capitalist social fabric’s foundation to implement instead a capitalist adaptation. In this context, it was an established fact that as an estimate from 1931 stated: the fellah’s debts were equal to the output of his labor and his annual agricultural produce. (6)
Thus, by 1935 a huge stratum of indigenous landless peasant farmers had been created, but as “mobile wage-workers” these had the nowhere to go: not only had the non-agricultural sector of the economy slowed down, it was increasingly closed off to them by the Zionists. Jobless and destitute, in their tens of thousands thrown back between village and town and ever more desperate because of the deepening poverty in which their families were sunk, they began to form huge pockets of social discontent, especially in the shanty dwellings on the outskirts of Jaffa and Haifa: A socio-political environment, where the already existing tense atmosphere could grow rapidly worse in the given circumstances.
Although, the roots of insurrection conflated a number issues; the massive proletarianization of the fellahin, the rapid growth in Jewish immigration to Palestine could become among the motives for the revolt: From 1932 to 1936 there were 174,000 immigrants, more than the total Jewish population of the country in 1931. Thus, in April 1936 a Arab attack on a Jewish bus led to a series of incidents that escalated into a major Palestinian rebellion. A Arab Higher Committee, a loose coalition of recently formed Arab political parties, was formed by Palestinian notable leaders soon after the strike began, largely in response to this pressure from below, but never really gained control of events.
In the sporadic fighting of 1936 and in the intense battles of the second phase of the revolt, which began in September 1937, local organization was paramount, with minimal coordination between the mainly peasant military bands, which bore the brunt of the fighting. In spite of this lack of coordination, the Palestinians initially had the British on the defensive for much of 1937 and 1938 and took control of most Arab cities, towns, and villages, and much of the countryside. Only the arrival of massive British reinforcements – which brought troop strength to over 20,000 by 1938 – and the intensive use of air power was able to break the back of the revolt.
End of the 2end world war
After World War II (1939-1945), the British soon realized that their global Imperialism was no longer tenable and that the mandate in Palestine was not workable. By 1945, the population of Palestine was just over 1.8 million, including 554,000 Jews (30.6%). (29) From 1944-1947, Jewish militias attacked British forces. In November 1944, for instance, Jewish terrorists assassinated Lord Moyne, a British official in Egypt. In 1946, the National Military Organization (Irgun or IZL) and Fighters for the Freedom of Israel (LHI or Stern gang) killed 300 civilians and tens more military personnel. In February 1947, Britain asked the fledgling United Nations to address the question of Palestine. Like the Peel Plan of 1937, the majority of the United Nations Special Committee on Palestine (UNSCOP) favored a partition of Palestine into two states, a Jewish one and a Arab one. According to UNSCOP, the Arab state would be about 42% of Palestine and the Jewish one about 55%; the remaining territory, including Jerusalem, would be an international zone. The Jewish state would have had about 500,000 Jews and 400,000 Arabs.5 On November 29, 1947, UNSCOP’s majority report was approved by the United Nations General Assembly as resolution 181. The Jews accepted partition, and the Arabs rejected it. (29)
Almost immediately, fighting started in Palestine between Jewish and Arab forces. Until Israel declared its independence on May 14, 1948, most of the fighting was between local forces. Once Israel declared independence, Arab states became directly involved. The Arab side failed to take advantage of its overall personnel edge by coordinating its military attacks. By the time the fighting fully ended in early 1949, Israel controlled about 78% of the territory in UNSCOP’s plan. Jerusalem was not under international control. Israel controlled the west of the city while Trans Jordan, soon to be Jordan, held the east. Of the remaining 22%, Egypt occupied the Gaza Strip, and Jordan held and later annexed the West Bank. In 1949, Israel signed armistice agreements with Egypt, Jordan, Lebanon, and Syria.
As a result of the war, approximately 650-700,000 Palestinians became refugees, mostly as a result of Israeli expulsions, military offensives, and massacres and the resulting panic and fear. For several years, Zionist political and military leaders had discussed how to form an independent Jewish state given the Palestinians’ numerical advantage. Some Zionist leaders hoped for a massive migration of Jews from the Diaspora to Israel, while others emphasized the need to expel Palestinians from Israel. Israeli military leaders created contingency plans for removing the Palestinian population during wartime.
As events unfolded, some Palestinians were given orders by the Israeli military to leave. Yitzhak Rabin, later Israel’s prime minister, ordered 50,000 Palestinians to leave Lod and Ramle with the approval, he says, of Ben Gurion. More generally, the Israeli government did not issue a formal decision to expel Palestinians, but Ben Gurion made clear the need to take advantage of the wartime opportunity to alter the unfavorable demographic balance. (29)
World War II as the completion of the First World War did not modify the imperialistic geopolitical mapping of the Middle East. If the proletarian revolutionary wave, with the Russian revolution in the lead, of the late 1910s forced the European Imperialist powers to stop the open barbarism of capitalist civilization, it did not succeed to end the capitalist system by replacing it with world-wide socialistic-communistic project of the international proletariat. The result of this interruption was that an unfinished cycle of capital accumulation could prevent the start of a new cycle: At political and military level, humiliated Germany with their economy in ruins after World War I was to restart the new Imperialist war adventure in order to inject necessary stimulus, to set in motion a new cycle of capital accumulation.
In the preparation phase of the war, the political, nationalist elite of Palestine decided to break with the British and join raising German and the Axis countries. Siding with German Imperialism was a logical calculation from Palestinian ruling elite with Haj Amin al-Husseini in the lead, after decades of collaboration and the subordinate relation with the British Imperialism, which did not result in substantial political gain, compared to the Zionist’s political achievements during the same period of time.
At the close of the Second World War, Germany was partitioned as a result of its defeat in the war. This left the Palestinian ruling class in no position in dealing with issues of raising Israeli state that was already in process in accordance with the British mandate over Palestine.
The peasant class already defeated militarily 1939, the historic road was paved through the WZO’s and other financial instruments of capital import to organize a Jewish capitalist (constant and variable) formation in Palestine. The second world war actually created the golden opportunity for the Jewish ruling class to construct embryo of semi-military organizational structures as necessary organs of repression for future Israeli state: World War II displayed a period of close and open British-Jewish military cooperation through three Jewish military organizations, Haganah, IZL, and Stern Gang who played a significant role in ensuring Jewish control on Palestine during and after WWII. (31)
In addition, the British Army created the Palestine regiment divided into separate Jewish and Arab battalions, in 1942; the same Jewish companies, battalions, became later the core of the Jewish Brigade as a military formation of the British Army that served in Europe during the Second World War in late 1944. Of course military and armistice experience and knowledge gained during 2nd World War by the Jewish brigade played a crucial role in establishing of the Israeli state in 1948: ‘If the Jewish Brigade would have not existed, the state of Israel could have been only a Zionist dream’. (31)
The Zionist nation-state build-up approach had its origins in the changes in the British Imperialist (mandate) politics, tradition dating from the late 1910s and more generally in the developments of imperialistically remapping both Europe and Arab speaking world, i.e., ex-Ottoman territory. At the same time, Zionism’s theoretical, practical and ideological conceptualization as a model of national state has its origins in capitalistic civilization of class society in the early 1900s Europe. Logically, both of these political and historical processes entirely based on the formal rule division of the capitalist world.
The rise of Israeli state
Land purchases by the Zionists in the early years of the Mandate provided an overriding significant political power base for the Zionist movement: through ownership of land ‘the Zionist quasi-government could have some power of compulsion over all economic activities to be undertaken on public land, including those that would be privately and independently financed. In this respect, national land was truly a substitute for the political power of a government’. (32)
Economic, social and political integration of the constantly new migrant and settlers was a Zionist’s normal life process. It was a political task to meet the changes by pointing to their own ideological perspective and outline possible social future.
Thus, when the establishment of the Israeli state that was declared (May 14, 1948), the Zionist movement with the Jewish bourgeoisie in charge was already able to deal with numerous aspects of socio-economics of the Jewish community, in Palestine, simultaneously with a more accomplished political and military skill. Consequently, the establishment of the Israeli state characterized a gradual build-up of the cutover plan that Zionism built to replace the pre capitalist Palestine with a modern twist of capitalist national state.
A cutover process that was virtually traceable back in Theodor Herzl’s Der Judenstaat (The Jewish State) and the Belford declaration, but the physical realization achieved in an intensive process of capital accumulation after the British Empire acquired Palestine as an important strategic asset. (33) Thus, in reality a process of transformation of
If for Marx Jew who embodies the “spirit of capitalism” and Judaism the essence of capitalism in his essay, On the Jewish Question, what the state of Israel would embody or symbolize for the proletariat at the turn of 21st century, considering the role and place of the labor movement in creation of the Israeli state: In 1920, the Histadrut (General Federation of Labor) was founded, bringing into an unified framework all Labor Zionist political parties and undertaking, on their behalf, a broad range of political, economic, and cultural activities.
Ironically, a flash of brilliance and answers to the question of Israel (Jewish national home) can be found in the Communist manifesto, at least on the horizon line where the proletariat is not able yet to revolutionize the perspective of civilization:
‘The Socialistic bourgeois want all the advantages of modern social conditions without the struggles and dangers necessarily resulting therefrom. They desire the existing state of society, minus its revolutionary and disintegrating elements. They wish for a bourgeoisie without a proletariat. The bourgeoisie naturally conceives the world in which it is supreme to be the best; and bourgeois Socialism develops this comfortable conception into various more or less complete systems. In requiring the proletariat to carry out such a system, and thereby to march straightway into the social New Jerusalem, it but requires in reality, that the proletariat should remain within the bounds of existing society, but should cast away all its hateful ideas concerning the bourgeoisie.’ (34)
The Israeli-Palestinian question maintains its case of social-historical reality with irresolvable contradictions that belong to the nature of reality itself and to the nature of capitalistic dichotomy. The antagonistic nature of this question will not be transcended and cease to be contradictions: Quite the reverse, they will be seen to be necessary contradictions arising out of the antagonisms of capitalistic social order as a whole.
When revolutionary theory opens the way to resolving these contradictions it does so by revealing the real tendencies of socio-political action of the proletariat and its concrete contradiction with capitalism. These are destined to affect a real resolution of the contradictions that have emerged in the course of history with focus on dynamism of class struggle.
The Palestinian Arab and Jewish proletarian discourse and its practical politics need to be re-emerged in the process of revolutionary action of the proletariat to negate class society and its boundaries esteemed from Arab and Jews conflicts. A proletarian perspective can not be remained inside Palestine borders between Arabs and Jews who imagine themselves to be the subject to their own life: Although, they find this to be an illusion that is destroyed by the immediacy of proletarian class action in connection to his worldwide anti-capitalistic existence. A revolutionary perspective can only be driven from a generic position of the proletariat in the domain of political actions. The basic issue of class struggle for Israel-Palestinian proletariat revolves around the consciousness on the inseparability of a unified perspective and seeing himself as a worldwide subject of revolutionary action.
A proletarian Perspective after 1948
In this way, Israeli/Palestinian proletariat perceives reality of capitalism as a given, an external unchanging reality; where for the ruling classes, reality eminent from his own class interests and action.
In this reality of contradiction, i.e., Israeli/Palestinian question, the proletariat needs to separate clearly its class and future perspective from the Israel-Palestinian Bourgeoisie. The proletariat from both sides can naturally resist capitalistic/nationalistic perspective of the ruling classes, in order to deal with issues, inter-vowed to the process of capital accumulation: The immediate economic demanding actions as class resistance can create quantitative limits to accumulation. However, the proletarian approach to Israel-Palestinian question can not find a realistic solution by isolating the issue as a particular objective issue.
The Israel-Palestinian proletariat needs sooner or later to discover that inter-capitalist system of worldwide production with huge sets of armistice state-machineries running and covering the whole planet can only be questioned by the proletariat, i.e., main source of labor supply, as a global international subject: the world proletariat. So she needs a revolutionary platform-based approach to include a theory-practical framework that could be applied across nations, regions and globally.
The proletariat can start with the question in Israel or Palestine, but its resolution and future success is dialectically embedded in revolutionary action of proletarian class in the Middle East and the rest of the world. Solutions other than the proletarian approach, anti capitalist, are basically capitalist and lead nowhere: Nationalist or Islamic solution is socio-historically anti proletarian approaches relative to their vital task of nurturing and maintenance of existing social class order within the framework of the capitalist mode of production. In short, the ruling Israeli-Palestinian class’ main concern and function focused on keeping the cycle of capital accumulation running uninterrupted through the systematized political process of control and dominance over the productive forces, particularly the labor power. For the bourgeoisie and its ruling elite, it does not matter the negative side of this accumulation process: mass proletarianization on regional or global level. As Marx, general law of capitalist accumulation points this out:
‘It establishes an accumulation of misery, corresponding with an accumulation of capital. Accumulation of wealth at one pole is, therefore, at the same time, accumulation of misery, agony of toil, slavery, ignorance, brutality, mental degradation, at the opposite pole. I.e., on the side of the class that produces its own product as capital.’ (35)
History is being revisited; every time the Israeli sets in motion its suppression machinery to communicate with the rival Palestinian ruling elite. Colossal destruction and death of proletarian masses and their limited life reserves has to be expected, mainly on the Palestinian side, when possible Israeli-Palestinian elite’s military-political negotiation moves into an unsatisfactory state: For Israeli-Palestinian ruling classes question of militaristic-political power exercise is the core of their past, present and future useless class existence. The brutal and savage clashes between Israeli and Palestinian ruling classes will never open possibility for proletarian masses from both sides for processing a necessary class reconciliation process that is vital for class reunification and a sense of brotherhood /sisterhood among Jewish and Palestinian proletarian masses.
Both ruling classes, Israeli and Palestinian, are basically concerned about the endless accumulation process of capital – Jewish and Palestinian companies accumulate capital in order to accumulate more capital. Both ruling classes are united in exploiting the labor power in the course of extracting the surplus value of labor supply; however they are divided in sharing the power among them. As integrated into the world economy and capitalist system makes them belong to the same unified world capitalist framework with old and new markets. However, they do not belong to a united political structure or culture, the only thing that keeps them in life is to take a market / market share and therefore need a multiplicity of states, so they can gain all advantages.
Although, there has never existed real balance of forces between the Israeli state and Palestinian semi-state: the former is most advanced and powerful militaristic state machinery in the Middle East. The latter is no level of confronting its rival, but it can easily provoke violent, aggressive and barbaric military escalation of force from the Israeli side. Asymmetrically both sides are economically and militarily/armistice connected and is supported by hegemony and active Imperialistic power/s of the time. If US capitalist-imperialist relation has kept the Israeli, watchdog of West, in place, the Palestinian ruling elite has had its sphere of capitalist-imperialist relations: The Russian block of cold war era, the imperialist aspirants such, Saddam Hussein’s regime 1990s, Syrian regime, Iran-Hizbollah…
Thus, the state machinery of both sides, in quickly adapting to capitalist crisis, is actually getting bigger over time, and this is nowhere close to class perspective of the proletarian masses to breaking the shackles. The proletarian class perspective requires unification of its fragmented body parts when it realizes the role and place of transforming itself from a divided entity, Palestinian, Israeli…, for a unified class as a whole. The unified proletarian class is a deadly Parisian arrow shooting to the Achilles’ heel of ruling class’ implanted false class consciousness.
As a historically objective issue, the Israeli-Palestinian question was created by the rules and needs of the capitalist – imperialist system 1920s-1940s: Therefore it demands from the proletariat, the only true anti capitalist-agent, a revolutionary resolution: A socialistic-communistic and platformic approach which is driven from the historicism of the proletarian class. Accordingly, the conduct of the proletariat during class struggle in Israel, Palestine, the Middle East… needs to tend toward universalizing its deeds and revolutionary perspective. The art of class war has to be discovered by the proletariat if he intends to resist imposed barbarism of capitalist civilization on humanity and all forms of life, in the forms of nationalism, religious… or imperialist conflicts, wars… and mass destruction tendency embedded in the core of production system; the conceptual and worldwide limits of endless capitalistic accumulation, that in turn is based on the universal and total commoditization of labor power and consequently the sphere of social reproduction.
Stockholm, September 2014
1- Arthur Hertzberg, The Zionist Idea: A Historical Analysis and Reader, 1997.
2- Lenni Brenner, The Iron Wall: Zionist Revisionism from Jabotinsky to Shamir,1984.
3- David Jacobson, Palestine and Israel, Bulletin of the American Schools of Oriental Research, No. 313,1999.
4- V.I. Lenin: Imperialism, the Highest Stage of Capitalism, September 1917.
5- Rosa Luxemburg Social Democracy and the National Struggles in Turkey,(October 1896).
6- Kenneth W. Stein, The Land Question in Palestine, 1917-1939.
7- Philip McMichael McMichael, Development and Social Change: A Global Perspective, 2011.
8- A) http://palestineisraelpopulation.blogspot.se/ B) The third wave between 1919 and 1923 brought another 85,000 immigrants, mostly Polish and middle class.
9- Diplomats Georges Picot and Sir Mark Sykes reached an agreement to dissect and divide the land that was previously part of the Ottoman Empire between their countries, France and Britain respectively.
10- Shepherd, Naomi, “Iron Gloves,” Ploughing Sand: British Rule in Palestine 1917-1948, 1999.
11- Mattar, Philip, “The Mufti of Jerusalem and the Politics of Palestine,” The Middle East Journal 42:2, 1998.
12- The Jewish militia, the Haganah, formed in 1921, was a small defensive force that protected Jewish settlements and sections of towns. The British ignored the formation of Haganah, which was officially illegal.
13- Seton-Williams, M. V., Britain and the Arab States: A Survey of Anglo-Arab Relations 1920-1948, First edition 1948.
14- Simha Flapan: Zionism and the Palestinians,1979.
15- Ilan Pappé, The Israel/Palestine Question, 1999.
16- Pamela Ann Smith, Palestine and the Palestinians, 1876-1983, 1994.
17- Zachary Lockman: Comrades and Enemies:Arab and Jewish Workers in Palestine, 1906–1948: 1996.
18- In a pamphlet written in 1905, “To the Jews”, 1905.
19- Leon Trotsky: History of the Russian Revolution, 2008.
20- Rosa Luxemburg: THE CRISIS IN THE GERMAN SOCIAL-DEMOCRACY, February-April 1915, Paperback – 1 Jan 1967.
21- The Comintern and the East: The Struggle for the Leninist Strategy and Tactics in National Liberation Movements, Moscow: Progress Publishers, 1979.
22- Musa Budeiri, The Palestine Communist Party, 1919–1948: Arab and Jew in the Struggle for Internationalism (London: Ithaca Press, 1979).
23- Offenberg, Mario. 1975. Kommunismus in Palastina: Nation und Klasse in der antikolonialen Revolution. Meisenheim: Anton Hain
24- Manifesto of the Congress to the Peoples of the East, http://www.marxists.org/history/international/comintern/baku/manifesto.htm
25- Fourth Congress of the Communist International, Theses on the Eastern Question,5 December 1922 :www.marxists.org/ history/international/comintern /4th congress/eastern- question.htm.
27- Bernhard H. Bayerlein, Hermann Weber: Der Thälmann-Skandal Geheime Korrespondenzen mit Stalin. Extractions form: http://www.h-net.org/
28- Mark A. Tessler: A History of the Israeli-Palestinian Conflict, 1994.
29- Alexander Scholch. Palestine in Transformation 1856-1882, Studies in Social and Political development, translated by Wiliam Young and Michael Gerrity (Washington, 1993).
30- Hanoch Barton: Jewish Brigade bermeme, journalist, novelist: http://www.jewishpost.com/aboutus.html
31- Jacob MeUer, ‘Economic Structure and National Goals – The Jewish National Home in Interwar Palestine’: The Journal of Economic History, V.38, Issue 01, mars 1978, pp 101 – 119.
32- AvMichael J Cohen: Google book: Britain’s Moment in Palestine: Retrospect and Perspectives, 1917-1948.
33- Marx & Engels: Library: 1848: Manifesto of the Communist Party: Chapter 3: https://www.marxists.org/
34- Cf. Barbara J. Smith, The Roots of Separatism in Palestine. British Economic Policy. 1920-1929 (Syracuse 1993)
35- Karl Marx: Capital Volume I, Part VII, Ch. 25: https://www.marxists.org/archive/marx/works/1867-c1.