by Jim Stephens
June 8, 2010
Sean Matgamma of the Workers Liberty has printed an outstandingly disgraceful article on the Flotilla issue, especially as this man claims to be a Trotskyist.
The article is interesting in one other respect. This website on which I now write remains standing as the only Trotskyist organization which has a correct position towards Israel. The following is what Matgamma wrote on June 4, 2010
An impersonator who looks like the country’s leader murders him, takes his place, and thereafter deliberately leads the state to defeat and catastrophe. That was the plot of a Hollywood film I saw long ago.
Sometimes it is almost tempting to think up some such tale to account for Israel’s behaviour – to conclude that a bitter enemy of the Jewish state and of its best immediate and long-term interests has somehow got control in Jerusalem and works relentlessly to undermine Israel.
The self-righteous but too often senseless eternal prattle about “terrorists” with which the Israeli governments respond to criticisms only adds an extra element of repulsiveness to Israel’s treatment of the Palestinians.
The flotilla of relief ships which the Israeli army bloodily attacked in international waters was far more a political demonstration against the Israeli blockade of Gaza than an attempt to bring practical relief to Gaza.
The quantity of relief goods it carried was comparatively insignificant in proportion to the needs of the people of Gaza, and at best would have brought a marginal amelioration. Primarily it was a political demonstration of solidarity with the people of Gaza and condemnation of Israel.
The Israeli army’s attack on the ships turned the flotilla into a tremendously effective political demonstration against Israel. If that had been the intention, then the Israeli authorities would have succeeded brilliantly. They could not have done more if that had been their intention.
The Israeli army treated the people on the Mavi Marmara with the grotesquely disproportionate lack of restraint with which they habitually treat the Palestinians. The political message of the organisers of the flotilla was made to reverberate like thunder round the world.
None of the Israeli explanations stand up. So, the Israeli soldiers coming down ropes from helicopters were attacked with sticks – or iron bars, knives, whatever – by Islamist militants on the ship, some of whom at least will have advocated the destruction and abolition of the Jewish state by Arab military action?
So? That was not predictable, even as a contingency? That attempt to defend the ship from airborne attack justified the lethal response of armed professional soldiers, the killing of at least nine and the wounding of at least 30?
Only in the eyes of people who accept no restraint and no limits, people grown used to the exercise of lethal and disproportionate force, justified with the conventional cant against terrorists.
So soldiers do not, by the nature of their trade, make gentle and restrained policemen? That was not known, not to be expected?
Israeli soldiers captured most of the ships in the flotilla without bloodshed, therefore what happened on the sixth was not the fault of the Israeli army? That is only a variant on the argument that any resistance justifies massively disproportionate response.
The cry of Israeli prime minister Binyamin Netanyahu that the occupants of the Mavi Marmara were “terrorists” is as if designed to discredit what Israel says when it is a matter of real terrorists.
What happened on the ships follows from the overall policy of recent Israeli governments: the fact that most Israeli leaders pay only, at best, lip service to the policy of allowing the Palestinians to set up an independent state, alongside Israel, in the Occupied Territories and Gaza. That policy is the only just solution to the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.
Something much better than the Israeli policy that led to the shipboard slaughter, to the Israeli blockade of Hamas-ruled Gaza, and to all the many disproportionate and bloody incidents in the Occupied Territories is, probably, available at will to an Israel acting from its present strength.
The present Israeli government, despite occasional words to placate Washington, is opposed to any just two-states solution. There is opposition within Israel to the government’s policy, but Israel will not, it seems, change until it is forced to do so by Washington and the EU.
Will the massacre on the Mavi Marmara and the outcry against Israel lead to the deployment of enough pressure on Israel, and, in the most important place, to US pressure to end the blockade of Gaza? If it does, then those responsible for what happened on the ship will, inadvertently, have served the cause of progress and humanity.
It is hardly worth writing very much more on Matgamma. The above is quite self explanatory. He has in fact now joined with the antisemites of the Fascist Left, like the SWP, the WRP or WSWS, and joined also with the Media organs like the Daily Mail.
Leon Trotsky said something different Matgamma. In the whole of the 1930s as Trotsky analysed Fascism he warned about the Holocaust and he urged Jewish people (not workers Matgamma just people) to get out of Europe, get to Palestine, and there set up a Jewish state, against the British and against the “reactionary Mohammedans”
Any person who reads this must understand certain things
1. The position of Leon Trotsky in the 1930s
2. That only this website 4international stands in support of Israel against world antisemitism.
Matgamma has been around a long time. I must say we on 4international saw this coming and said so.
Now Matgamma is ending his political life and he will be remembered in time to come as a traitor to Trotskyism.
I do not wish to spend too long on this. This group of Workers Liberty has nothing in common with the struggle of Trotsky.
Their attack on Israel is from the Fascist Left, in other words from the right antisemites of Britain.
So in a comment “martin” writes
The Israeli trade union federation, the Histadrut, responded to the massacre with a weaselly statement, effectively blaming the victims. Now activists in Britain are redoubling their calls for British trade unions to break all links with the Histadrut – as if links between union and union were conditional on political agreement, or as if British unions were justified in adopting a self-righteous boycott of Israeli workers.
The answer: maintain and build working-class links. Rise up, not “against Israel” as such, but against the policies of successive Israeli governments. Recognise Israel’s right to exist and defend itself, but also the right of the Palestinians to an independent state, alongside Israel and with the same rights as Israel.
But Martin the right of the “palestinians” are turning out to be the right to destroy Israel.
Here Martin is lining up with Abbas, successor to Arafat, who in turn was the successor to Hajj Aminel Husseini, and mentored by that Nazi Butcher
I do not find it particularly appealing but due to the dialectic of history we are on this website alone in representing the true Trotskyist tradition.
Matgamma has lined up with the antisemites of the UN, EU and the world capitalist class, aligning itself with Islam and the Vatican to destroy Israel.