We proposed that this extraordinary meeting of the Parties of our region, also with the presence of other parties, be held because of the provocative assault be the Israeli army on the peoples of Palestine and Lebanon and because of the new situation which has developed in the region as a whole.
First of all it gives us the opportunity to receive a first hand account of the situation from the comrades from Lebanon and Palestine.
Secondly it gives us the opportunity to discuss and exchange views about the situation and more importantly to take action and coordinate our activity on the political-ideological level as well as practically in terms of solidarity actions, joint initiatives, which on the one hand will expose the imperialist organizations and operations, the decisions and measures they take against the peoples, movements and governments who do not fall in line with their plans. And on the other hand communists as the jost consistent force in the fight against imperialism we must stand up as the vanguard in order to stir-up the people, in the organization of struggle against imperialist interventions and wars, in the politicization and making the public aware of the real reasons of the wars, the anti-democratic measures etc., by revealing the nature of imperialism and of the imperialist system and the necessity of a radical change in the contemporary balance of forces, to deepen the struggle for real democratization and for socialism….
Dear Comrades today it seems even clearer the goal the so-called anti-terrorism measures have and the statements by the imperialists concerning the "need to combat extremist ideas and organizations". We are clearly not talking about random strikes which on many occasions are of unclear origin, we are talking about the characterization of every act of resistance including armed struggle which is used against occupation, against invasion, against the violence which imperialism and "state-terrorists" such as Israel use, as "terrorism" and extremism". The goal is to ensure a "quiet graveyard" where anything that moves against the imperialist order, oppression and barbarity will be shot down! We are categorically against such measures and viewpoints and we will struggle against them resolutely….
From June when the barbaric attacks of the Israeli army against the Palestinians in the Gaza Strip and West Bank took place, we condemned the Israeli government referring to the fact that the Israeli government cannot use the pretext that it acts in self-defense because it has done everything it can to destroy any possibility of negotiation with the Palestinians , by its refusal to recognize the new Palestinian government and Hamas as a political party which won the majority of seats in the elections, and has thus led the situation to a dead-end. Then followed measures aimed at the economic suffocation of the Palestinian people by the Israeli government, The USA and the EU. The pretext for the assault against the Palestinians was the capture of an Israeli soldier by Hamas fighters and the Israelis followed on from this by kidnapping 8 ministers of the new government, as well as other members of the parliament including its President. This is the behaviour of a state which finds itself in a defensive position! The world learnt at the same time that the Palestinians had been seeking the release of thousands of political prisoners who are languishing in Israeli gaols. Should the Palestinians not resist, not defend their dignity, not fight for their independence, for their own state?
Then followed the attack on Lebanon. The pretext was again an incident between Hezbollah and an Israeli patrol and the capture of 2 soldiers with the aim of exchanging them with Lebanese political prisoners being held in Israeli prisons. This was not the first time that such incidents and prisoner exchanges had occurred. Nevertheless the invasion by the Israeli army which followed, led certain figures and sides to speak about "excessive use of force" in relation to the incident from the part of the Israelis.
Our Party in assessing the situation characterized the attack by the Israelis as pre-planned, that this attack was part of a wider plan for the reshaping of the Middle East, the so-called "Democratization of the Middle East". This is the plan of Bush, the plan of NATO with the support of the EU. They wish to overthrow even governments which are not necessarily hostile to them, for they will not tolerate any desire for national independence to exist in these countries. They want political forces which are entirely obedient and the peoples crushed.
The unjust war of occupation which the government has been carrying out for years makes it even more clear in what situation the UN finds itself in today. The Security Council of the UN was unable to take any substantial decision against the criminal attacks of the Israeli army against Palestine and Lebanon. It could not even condemn the killing of 4 UN observers by Israel. The provocative support of Israel by the USA and other leading imperialist powers in the UN SC had as its purpose to buy time for the completion of the dirty plan aimed at eliminating all resistance in Lebanon and Palestine. The Franco-American plan which came to the surface, moved in the same direction ignoring the positions of the government of Lebanon.
The French initiative is connected with the imperialist contradictions which are apparent in the region. France agrees to the basic plan for a "New Middle East", this was expressed during the G8 summit in Russia and in the statement which it signed, as well as in the position which the EU took on the same issue in the summit with the USA in June 2006 where the ongoing intervention into the internal affairs of Lebanon, also based on UN Security Council resolutions, was reaffirmed unanimously. France has appeared in the recent period as a power which wishes to play the part of Lebanon and Palestine’s "protector" and provokes tensions both with the USA and Israel.
Finally on the 12th of August 2006 after over a month of fruitless military operations by the Israeli army by air, sea and land and the its failure to eliminate the Lebanese resistance, which caused massive material damage and thousands of victims and deaths amongst the unarmed Lebanese population, the Security Council of the UN under the pressure of inter-imperialist tensions as well as the huge public outcry which the Israeli barbarity and inaction of the UN stirred up, a compromise was reached with the Security Council resolution 1701/2006.
In our estimation it cannot be considered as the basis of a just solution which will create the conditions for the security, sovereignty and territorial integrity of Lebanon. It gives Israel the right to claim that it again acts in "self-defense" and at the same time continue to intervene in the internal affairs of Lebanon — despite the opposition of the to this of the government, political parties and organizations of Lebanon — on the question of disarmament. The installation of a strengthened military force under the auspices of the UN, with increased powers in south Lebanon, reflects the demand of Israel and the USA to cover any void which might be created as Hezbollah states. These are pretexts to strike all of the Lebanese resistance. This resolution sows the seeds of a new more serious conflict.
The KKE, in light of the experience of similar peace-keeping forces in the Balkans, Afghanistan and elsewhere, has taken a negative stance to the formation of such a force in Lebanon which will have greater powers to intervene in the country’s internal affairs, and has taken a position emphatically opposed to the participation of our country in whatever way in such an enterprise. We also underline the increases activity of NATO in the region and the plan for it to take a more energetic role against the struggle of the peoples.
Furthermore there is the daily slaughter of Palestinians by the military operations of Israel which continue undiminished from June to this day. Has the UN Security Council nothing to say for the outrage which is taking place in Gaza and the West Bank? For the arrest of members of the Palestinian government which was recently elected? What should the Palestinians feel and do when confronted by this outrage?
It is also well known that the peoples and governments of Syria and Iran are in the firing line of the USA and Israel, as well as other imperialist powers such as France.
Whatever opinion anyone may have about specific organizations and governments they must respect national sovereignty and the principle of non-interference in the internal affairs of states and even more so they cannot legitimize the appearance of the governments of the USA and other imperialist countries out of the blue as respecters of democracy and freedom where is in fact they represent the interest of their monopolies.
The peoples today, who are being attacked, are winning and defending with their blood their freedom, independence, national sovereignty, their right to choose their own path, against the imperialists and the lessons they allegedly wish to teach with their bloodletting and military superiority. The "New Middle East" which they desire to impose by the flattening of cities and villages, by the slaughter of civilians, is being proved to be difficult to achieve. A new Middle East is that which will arise out of the resistance and countless sacrifices of the peoples of Palestine, Lebanon, Iraq and the other peoples of the region….
It is very positive that in the middle of this difficult period (due to the summer) 71 workers’ and communist parties put out a joint statement of solidarity with the peoples of Lebanon and Palestine meanwhile many parties issued their own statements especially after the massacre of civilians in Qana. Mass and militant demonstrations against the unjust war of conquest of Israel and the provocative support of the USA and EU, were held in many countries of the world on every continent.
It is necessary on our part to underline one more time the consistent internationalist position of the CP Israel and we salute it from this platform as an example for our own Party.
In addition we salute the heroic resistance of the Lebanese people, the consistent militant stance of the Lebanese CP and its militants who continued to be martyred fighting against the Israeli invasion, in defense of the national sovereignty and independence of Lebanon.
We also salute the heroic resistance of the Palestinian people, parties and organizations against the occupation, the embargos, the settlements and the wall which ghettoizes all of the West Bank, the barbaric attacks against the Gaza Strip and the West Bank which are still continuing. We are in firm solidarity with the struggle of the Palestinian people for its independence, the creation of its own viable sovereign state in the Gaza Strip and West Bank with East Jerusalem as its capital.
In our opinion, we need to intensify our efforts and our struggle against the imperialist aggressiveness and plans that regard the whole region, focusing our attention on the following points:
— To defend the national independence and territorial integrity of every country against every imperialist intervention under whatever pretext.
— To demand the immediate end of the Israeli army operations against Lebanon and Palestine and its unconditional withdrawal
— To oppose to the creation of a new military force under the auspices of the UN which in reality will have its role to bring to pass what the military attack and invasion of Israel in Lebanon did not succeed in doing, the disarmament and elimination of the armed popular resistance.
— To demand that military forces from our countries do not take part in the UN military force in Lebanon.
— For the re-establishment of the territorial integrity of Lebanon and the withdrawal of the Israeli army from the occupied territories of south Lebanon including the Sheba area.
— For the immediate release by Israel of all Lebanese and Palestinian political prisoners as well as of the Palestinian deputies and ministers.
— For the withdrawal of the Israeli army for the territories occupied in 1967; for the complete dismantling of the settlements and the creation of a Palestinian state with East Jerusalem as its capital, alongside Israel.
— For the solution of the issue of the refugees. The return of the Palestinian refugees based on the UN assembly resolution 194 and in line with the related UN Security Council resolutions.
In our opinion the political message of our meeting can be based on the Joint Statement of the 71 Parties with some additions in light of recent developments and we can move on to discuss joint actions and the coordination of our activities.
Alongside the mass mobilizations, the efforts to rally in the struggle as broader forces possible, there is also a need to coordinate our efforts also in the front of the ideological counterattack, for the exposure of the character of the war, of the strategy of imperialism, the significance of the inter-imperialist contradictions in the outbreak and escalation of local wars and conflicts. Also for the exposure of the tactics the imperialists resort to in order to impose a "peace" profitable for them and humiliating for the people.
In our opinion new theoretical and political problems and issues emerge, that may enrich the strategy of the communist and the broader anti-imperialist movement. Of course we cannot address all issues today, nor they are questions that can be resolved in the frame of an extraordinary meeting that should primary focus on immediate and practical actions. However these are issues that require further thinking and discussion, eg the question of the combination of the patriotic antiwar struggle with the class struggle, issues related to alliances and coalitions, the contemporary role of the communist parties in a period of multifaceted and extremely dangerous imperialist aggressiveness.
As some possible immediate joint actions we would propose:
Joint solidarity delegations of Communist and Workers’ Parties to Lebanon, Palestine and Israel
Coordination of our Parties in the European parliament.
Invitation to take part in the sessions of the European parliament representatives from the Communist and Workers’ parties of the region (Palestine-Lebanon etc).
Pressure on every government that does not condemn the Israeli assault and supports sending an international force to the borders of south Lebanon.
The initiation of debates in the parliaments of every country, resolutions of condemnation etc
Demonstrations, mobilizations etc
Support joint initiatives by mass organizations and movement
Promotion of joint mass activities of our parties, even joint days of mobilization of our parties or by region…
Enhance the mobilization and coordination of the youth organizations of our parties in the condemnation of imperialist interventions and wars through joint events, special activities at their festivals etc…
Contribute to the mobilization of the mass movement and the international organizations such as WFTU, WFDY, WPC, WIDF etc.