Protest against war on Gaza. Photo: Paul Mattsson
Protest against war on Gaza. Photo: Paul Mattsson

Callum Joyce, Oxford Socialist Party

Over 35,000 Palestinians in Gaza killed. Over one million displaced from their homes – almost half of the entire population.

It is not just the Israeli state’s bombs and missiles that are leading to the huge loss of life. Electricity, food, water, and medicine are now all in short supply. Many are succumbing to starvation and illness. The healthcare system in Gaza teeters on the brink of collapse.

Many have been forced to crowd into the city of Rafah in the southern part of Gaza in an attempt to escape from the devastation. There is no real safety to be found there, however.

An Israeli state assault on Rafah will only lead to an even worse humanitarian disaster. The Israeli army has called for hundreds of thousands of civilians to evacuate, but where are they expected to go? Nowhere in Gaza is safe.

Even the Western regimes, which continue to support the Israeli state’s onslaught, have been forced to publicly oppose the idea of an attack on Rafah. US President Joe Biden has suspended one shipment of arms to Israel, and threatened that more weapons will be withheld if Israel goes ahead with the assault.

But the sheer hypocrisy of this is not lost on people. The US recently approved a further $26 billion of aid to Israel, including weapons.

In Britain, Tory foreign secretary David Cameron has publicly opposed an invasion of Rafah, while at the same time ruling out the suspension of arms licences, which Israel uses to buy weapons from British companies.

The massive street protests – some of the biggest in history in the case of Britain – and the growing student encampments, here and in the US, have worried these leaders that a further disaster in Rafah will only add to the anger that exists among working-class and young people, and could threaten their positions.

This provides just a glimpse of the potential power that the working class has to fight against war and oppression across the world. But the political representatives of big business can only be pushed so far.

The anti-war movement needs an organised political expression that does more than just pressure capitalist politicians, but challenges them for power as well. A new mass workers’ party, with an internationalist, socialist programme, could fight to harness the massive wealth that exists today to invest in jobs, homes, and services, instead of funding war and oppression.

A socialist plan of production across Britain, the US, Middle East, and the rest of the world would bring an end to the violence, poverty, and exploitation that can only continue on the basis of capitalism. If you agree – join us to fight for it.

Socialist Party is fighting for:

  • End the siege – for the permanent withdrawal of the Israeli military from the occupied territories
  • For a mass struggle of the Palestinians, under their own democratic control, to fight for liberation
  • For the building of independent workers’ parties in Palestine and Israel and links between them
  • For an independent, socialist Palestinian state, alongside a socialist Israel, with guaranteed rights for all minorities, as part of the struggle for a socialist Middle East
  • No trust in the capitalist politicians, internationally or in Britain. Fight to build a mass workers’ party in Britain that fights for socialism and internationalism