Thursday, September 20, 2007
Many Coup d'etats
A Landmark Article
By Dr. Adel Samara
"As occupied and settled by settler colonial white invaders, Palestine never enjoyed any form of independence. The first success of the Jewish settler colonial invasion took place in 1948 and the second in 1967 which conquered the rest of the country. In both, 1948 and 1967 invasions, the Zionist Ashkenazi Regime (ZAR) was financed, armed and trained, but also used, by the core capitalist ruling classes, a fact that proves that the aggression against Palestine is that of the core capitalist ruling classes since the first ambush until the coming large scale war.
The British colonization of Palestine (1917), aimed at enabling the settlers to disintegrate Palestine in geographic, social, economic and class aspects. What remains in common among Palestinians, after being evicted from their Homeland is the national/political issue, or in other words, to struggle, an area in which the capitalist class did not participate.
During the long march of Palestinian resistance against the Jewish settlers and the British colonialism since the first imperialist war (1914-1919), the contribution of Palestinian capitalism to the struggle, was nearly zero.
It is more evident through the last, but long and continuous wave of Palestinian resistance against the occupation in 1967, that capitalists are either collaborates, sub-contractors to Israeli capital, or being busy looking for feasible niches to invest, what I once called "to invest according to possible ceilings, i.e. areas or sectors which are either neglected by Zionist capital or not competing with it ". At its best, capital was busy in its own affairs, not in the national cause. This assures the fact that, Palestinian bourgeoisie is a passive local capitalist class, but not a "nationalist" capitalist class as some naïve Marxists prefer to call.
Moreover, Palestinian capitalists were never a source of financing to the resistance movement, i.e. PLO. This is one of the reasons for PLO's dependency on Arab regimes whose goal was to weaken its revolutionary spirit aiming to block its influence from spreading to Arab masses. This form of dependency on the ruling classes, and not alliance with Arab masses, was a pre-emptive step to oblige PLO, as a 'consumerist' resistance movement to depend on enemies' money, i.e. the capitalist donors, a route that ended in co-optation of PLO.
A Long Series of Coups
The last conflict in Gaza was called a coup d'etat against what is called al-Shariya- the legitimacy while it is an internal conflict over power in an occupied areas. The mere struggle for power under a settler colonial occupation is, in itself, a mutual coup from all participatory groups at the cost of the national cause.
Coup is not limited to military action. Any deviation from the cause, ideology, or goal is some form of a coup. Let's go back to the long series of internal Palestinian coup- d'etats.
Depending on money on the one hand, and money from an enemy, a class enemy (Arab rulers) or national enemy (ruling classes in the core capitalist countries) on the other, is in itself a coup d'etat against the national people's cause, i.e. the liberation of Palestine.
The assassination of Yousif Urabi, the real founder of Fath, in Damascus 1965 was a very early indication that this form of resistance leadership has a personal or elite's agenda, not a liberation project. It is a proof that this leadership was motivated by power, not liberation of Palestine.
The earliest dangerous coup, which highly supports the above analysis, was PLO leadership strategy of not interfering in the so-called ‘internal affairs of Arab regimes’. This is despite the fact that these regimes deeply interfered in all Palestinian affairs on the one hand, and more importantly, the mere existence of these regimes was in parallel with and in harmony, and even for the service of the ZAR in Palestine.
Another devastating coup was PLO's declaration of a state in Algeria (15 November 1988) including the free recognition of the ZAR. This declaration is a termination of the liberation of Palestine and Palestinian right of return (ROR).
Since 1967, ZAR was looking since 1967 for an alternative of PLO, to its program. In 1991, I wrote that if the PLO recognizes ZAR, it is, in fact, adapting its program according to ZAR conditions in an obvious coup d'etat.
The coup d'etat of declaration of independence in Algeria (1988) was the “mother’ who bred the coup d'etat of Oslo Accords which were designed and supported by:
1- Most of PLO groups, especially its bureaucratic capitalist leadership "al-Shariyia" , the legitimacy.
2- Most of Palestinian capitalist factions, i.e. the financial capitalism in Diaspora, and the local sub-contractors.
3- Three Palestinian intellectual currents: renegade communist-leftists, liberal westernized intellectuals, and PLO intellectuals who devoted themselves to support al-Shariyia which replaced Palestine.
It should be noted that Oslo was a turning point for the Palestinian capitalists who started dealing with internal politics motivated by catching the chance of ‘milking’ the society. The most recent ‘milking’ of society is the new cabinet whose plan was devoted for the parasitic private sector. It should be noted that most members of the current emergency cabinet are from these factions, i.e. sub-contractors, finance capitalists who came after Oslo Accords and pay little or nothing for main local companies which still sub-contact to their Israeli ‘mother’ companies, followers of the World Bank and IMF destructive prescriptions, and NGOs' managers who are also capitalists through invisible income.
Hamas falls into a coup d'etat as well. Hamas' participation in the 2006 elections was the real coup d'etat by Hamas. The United States, Israel and their Arab rulers' alliance encouraged Hamas to participate in the elections. Their goal was to put as many Palestinians as possible under the umbrella of the Oslo Accords. If a conflict were to follow the elections between Hamas and Fateh, it will serve the goal of these allies whose goal is the termination of Palestinian rights. Hamas strives, until today, to maintain its position as a resistance movement, which is good and hopefully will continue.
Then, comes the international gradual coup d'etat, against Hamas after its victory in the 2006 elections. It is crystallized in the boycotting of Hamas by the donors, and Fateh’s refusal to participate in a coalition government. Hamas’ ministers were without power in a state without institutions. All employees of Palestinian Authority (PA) were followers of Fateh and followed its orders and policy. That left Hamas minister without staff. This coup d'etat was a policy to gradually kill Hamas. That is why the armed conflict that took place in Gaza ended with an upper hand of Hamas.
The chief, but smooth and not costly, coup d'etat took place in the West Bank (WB) after Hamas domination of Gaza, was the creation of an emergency cabinet. The United States, Israel and their Arab allies got the chance to demoralize and terminate the popularity of both, Fateh and Hamas, or the termination of al-Shariyia and al-Qadassah for the benefit of the compradoric and parasitic private sector. They made Gaza a concentration camp. The WB became under an emergency cabinet composed of members who are, NGOized, capitalists, pro IMF and World Bank and Americanzed, i.e. a counter revolution (CR) cabinet.
It is Important to note that this current were dreaming to hold power before, but they lacked social base and a political party. In fact, even the popular classes are now without a party. But now, since the PA chairman fell totally into the hands of the CR, and because he is the leader of Fateh, Fateh supporter became, directly or indirectly the carrier of the new regime, the CR. Briefly speaking, Hamas is in a crisis and Fateh as well. While the CR failed to gain, but little seats in 2006 elections, despite spending millions of dollars, it jumped now easily to power.
It will be too difficult for the good Fateh people to recover the situation. The well financed CR will tell every body: that in order to maintain your position, you must support the new regime. The income of each employee, from the minister to the door keeper, will depend on the money of CR regime.
This coalition is, in fact, armed by a global media coverage (from Ramallah to the CNN) which attack Hamas and show that it as repressive, fundamentalist , anti-women…etc. In the WB, no one has the power or the courage to say a single word against the PA. When Hamas arrests or interrogates anyone, the media will call it “Hamas kidnap …", while in the WB, there is no news at all about repression. It is given a lot of money and weapons to maintain its rule. The CR is the first government or a group of Palestinian politicians that denounced the military struggle openly. It is the most open supporter to the private sector that exaggerates its role, while this sector is mainly a comprador and/or sub- contractor to the Israeli colonial capital.
A Party for the Regime
But, this is not the end of the story. It seems that the CR is trying to copy the experience of many Arab regimes, i.e. to hold power first and to build or design its own party around itself. That is why the CR published a manifesto entitled "Muntada Falasteen" calling intellectuals, activists, merchants…etc to join its membership. It is ironic to know that some renegade leftists are founders while others have started joining this party.
Since it compromises the ROR, denounces military struggle, supports capitalists, and private sector which normalizes with the enemy through creating a joint Israeli-Palestinian business council, the CR is not quite sure that Fateh people will continue to support its program. Even if that happened, they want to be more solid. They might go for new elections with a joint PLO list. The CR, however, still wants its own party.
A Comprador local Capital doesn't Deserves to Rule
The traditional Marxist analysis that the bourgeois of each country fights to protect its national market is not applicable in the case of the WB and Gaza Strip due to its subjugation to a settler colonial occupation on the one hand, and the parasitic/compradoric role of the local bourgeoisie in Palestine. This theory is applicable on the national and productive bourgeoisie which industrializes its country and that is the reason why it fought to maintain the local market for its own products. The Palestinian bourgeoisie never liberated the country nor industrialized it. Its investments are concentrated in housing, services and sub-contracts with the colonial capital. These capitalists took nearly free the privileges of communications company, financial market…etc. These investments are not productive. It is in the infrastructure which, in fact, consolidates dependency and made the de-linking from the ZAR's economy harder and more costly. A capitalism which accepts Self -Rule, does not fight for national liberation and independence, and is satisfied with a trickle-down share, doesn't deserve to rule. The CR is inheriting the same role of PLO leadership which was ‘donated’ a rent for its recognition of the AZR, in addition to supporting it to stay in power. At the same time, the CR launched an open war against Hamas, i.e. replacing al-Shariyia and al-Qadasah.
The most dangerous coup of the CR raises the main question in a very urgent manner. What is the alternative, and where do we go from here? It is the same question which was discussed in the leftist circles following Oslo Accords. The practical choice for the left at that time was to re-order itself as an opposition to the new dependent compromising regime, to divide its work into two levels, the open one for the well known old cadres and the underground one for the secret members who must continue military struggle, albeit not in a large scale so as to let people practice some normal and productive life.
Unfortunately, lefts leaders choose al-Shariyia, albeit in a smooth and gradual manner. The result is that the left melted and most of its good cadres left their organizations, while its right wingers made a u-turn towards the NGOs. As a matter of fact the big loser of Oslo accords was the left. The left deteriorated to the extent that when some people think of building a historical block (HB), the ex-leftists are not included.
While Hamas still in the resistance camp, a position which offers it a great credit by the masses, Hamas is either unwilling or unable to initiate a HB alliance, a mission that is still in need for a strong and deeply rooted movement to achieve. Some attempts have been made, but not producing yet.
This political stagnation gave others the chance to initiate more destructive plans. All these plans are "fruits" of the coup. One of them is the last agreement of frame between Abbas and Olmert at the beginning of September, another is the new elections.
According to results of poll centers which are owned or managed by normalizers, NGOs, and western imperialist media offices, the Fateh will defeat Hamas. Many good friends are aware of these polls. It might be right despite of the fact that their expectations for the last elections were far from the real results. But the harsh media campaign is working against Hamas, as well as the siege, and the preaching of the imperialist propaganda, culture, media and ideology agents that Hamas doesn't have food to feed the people, why shouldn't Hamas leave the stage…etc? As if the core of the conflict is the availability of some sacks of flour.
This question pushes us back to the mistake of participation in any elections under the ZAR occupation and the sponsorship of imperialist enemies. If there will be any elections, they will designed to breed a compromising council. The western capitalism which sucks the blood of hundreds of nations is not a credible observer. That is why, in the last elections, if Hamas had failed, western observers would have allowed the repeat of the elections to throw Hamas in the sea of Oslo. This doesn't block the possibility that al-Shariyia and its allies might consider outlawing Hamas.
Even if Hamas and other resistance groups will succeed, what is the meaning of that, at least after the experience of the last two years?
I think that we shouldn't be consumed in dealing with this issue. As long as we fall to be busy in the issue of ‘democracy’ under a settler colonial regime, we are in fact playing into the hand of the multi-enemy camp.
Our goal is to defeat the occupation, the liberation of Palestine, the work for the socialist future of Palestine and Arab Homeland, for a Jewish and other many minorities living an equal life with us in a socialist country. While this is a long-term project, but all black, tiny, false democratic, compromising, normalizing, capitalist motivated solutions, are in fact obstacles delaying more and more the long waiting, but real, solution. "