(The text below was written for the Nakba Day demonstration in Berlin and was read by a member of Praxis during the demonstration)
Palestine is the beating heart of the world’s oppressed, since it has never stopped the struggle. Palestine is the manifestation of the historic common ideal which connects the struggles of the world’s people. The issue of Palestine is where the commitment to being human is measured; it is where political and ideological positions are revealed, since a middle ground is not possible when it comes to Palestine: one is either with the oppressor or with the oppressed, either on the occupier’s side or supporting the Palestinians´ struggle against the occupation; we either support the colonial, oppressive and racist government of Israel in different forms and levels or support Palestine’s struggle and its fight against imperialism, colonialism and occupation, and participate in its struggle for emancipation.
The Nakba Day is not only the reminder of 68 years of displacement but also of 68 years of resistance and struggle by the Palestinians. The Nakba Day is the reminder of the fact that any path other than the one of fighting Zionism, occupation, prejudice, racism and suppression will only lead to the continuation of this catastrophe and oppression. Those 68 years of occupation and the fight against it prove that the real solution is the development of a radical and liberating struggle whose immediate goal should be the self-determination and the right of return for more than 6 million Palestinian who have faced mandatory displacement and exile. The history of 68 years of Palestinian struggle with its highs and lows negates any solution based on negotiations between the occupier and the occupied that attempts to achieve a hypocritical coexistence, and is an evidence to the righteousness of the collective resistance and struggle for real equality regardless of race and religion. This history is also the proof of the legitimacy of the collective struggle, which not only demands human and civil rights, but also the existence of all residents of historical Palestine including the displaced and the exiled. Reaching this goal requires not only a collective struggle of the Palestinians, but also an active intervention of all progressive forces who acknowledge the struggle for Palestine as an inseparable part of each and every liberating effort, and therefore consider Palestine’s struggle as part of their own.
The issue of Palestine for us, as a small group of Iranian communists in exile, also has further aspects. In the history of the communist struggle in Iran, the ideological and political support of the Palestinian struggle has been an inseparable part of the strategy of the struggle. Moreover, there have been more direct links such as the cooperation in the armed struggle. In the pre-revolution era, Palestinian guerrilla camps were training grounds for Iranian communist forces as well as opportunities of networking and connecting with other peoples. The historical context has shown us that just as in the past Iranian leftist revolutionaries were waging armed struggle both against the regime in Iran and on the Palestinian front, Iranian communists today have the responsibility as well to connect those two forces. For us this combative strategy is our legacy, which also serves to reveal the manipulative propaganda of the Islamic Republic’s oppressive government, and brings us to fight against the powerful lobbies of the Zionist regime as well as organizing an anti-hegemonic struggle against a reformist discourse, which reduces the issue of Israel as an occupying state to its relations with Iran. In our view, it is not possible to reach any form of peace in the region without the liberation of Palestine, and any possible emancipation for oppressed people in the countries in the region can only be achieved through an alliance of progressive forces and through their unified struggle against capitalist oppressive governments. Therefore, for us, Palestine’s struggle against the oppressive and occupying state of Israel is necessarily linked to the struggle against the tyrannical regime of the Islamic Republic.
We are here to cry out, together with you, in unison with Palestine, and to reveal the cooperation and policies of western governments who support Israel’s criminal regime. We are also here to expose the deceit of the dictatorial and oppressive government of Iran regarding its hypocritical support of Palestine, which is carried out with the sole aim of gaining economic and political influence in the region and of increasing the oppression and exploitation of the proletariat. Through this we wish to make clear that any liberating alternative in the region can only come to be through an international, radical, massive and versatile struggle against the dominance of capital and its regional politics, and that Palestine is the critical point in this struggle.
In our opinion, supporting Palestine’s struggle and participating in it cannot be reduced to a mere human rights issues, but this support and participation demand our loyalty to radical politics and at the same time to the efforts to find answers to the challenges that liberation movements are faced with everywhere: flight and displacement, Zionism, racism, colonialism, imperialism, the struggle for self-determination, radical struggle and resistance in all its forms and with all means, as well as other core concepts of the global socialist movement. We are learning from Palestine not only resistance and endurance, but also the perspective that there are always new ways, methods, strategies and means for a continuation of the struggle, even when faced with the systematic oppression supported by imperialistic forces and similar minded governments. A perspective which always recognizes the opportunity for a struggle can keep the hope alive.
And finally, we wish to reaffirm the words of the late Torab Haghshenas, the combatant and communist comrade and supporter of all the world’s laborers and oppressed people, especially of the Palestinians, who said “in front of the continuous attacks of the world of capital, which is trying to exterminate the Palestinians, we are all Palestinians.”
Long live the international struggle for liberation from occupation and from the dominance of colonialism and capital! Long live the struggle of the Palestinian people!