Houthi military helicopter flies over cargo ship in the Red Sea, source: Reuters
Israel’s genocidal war on the Palestinian people has raged for more than three months. Over 23,000 Palestinians have been killed, nearly 10,000 of them children.
The U.N. estimates that 1.9 million Palestinians, more than 80% of the population, in the Gaza Strip have been displaced and forced to flee their homes as a result of Israel’s relentless war.
People are trapped in Gaza; nowhere is safe. If Palestinians have managed to survive the bombings thus far, they now face disease and starvation. Israel’s continuing bombardment has destroyed Gaza’s whole healthcare system and around 70% of its housing. In addition, Israel has prevented the vast majority of international humanitarian aid from getting into Gaza.
Israel has expanded its war to the Occupied West Bank, with over 300 Palestinians killed since October 7th., victims of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF) or right-wing Israeli settlers.
As this massacre has unfolded, Israel’s reign of terror has spread beyond the borders of Palestine, threatening to ignite a conflict in the whole region.
Across the Middle East, there is widespread support for the Palestinian resistance. And for good reason — the Palestinian people are the most oppressed in the Middle East. They are a symbol to the people of the region of the consequences of U.S. and European domination.
Since the end of World War II, U.S. imperialism has expanded its presence and control over the Middle East. The region has vast natural resources and is strategically located within land and sea routes for international trade. Backing for Israel’s war on Gaza is a continuation of U.S. eﬀorts to dominate the region, as they did in Iraq and Afghanistan over the past two decades.
The domination by the U.S. and other European imperialist powers has created many enemies. The most powerful is the Iranian regime, which has been under U.S. threat since its 1979 revolution, which overthrew the U.S.-imposed dictatorship. Iran supports militias in the region that have engaged in armed confrontations with U.S. and Israeli forces in the past month. Iran claims its actions are in support of Palestinians, but like the U.S., they are fighting for economic and political influence in the region.
To retaliate against the U.S. and Israel, rebel groups in Yemen are attacking cargo ships trying to move through the Red Sea and the Suez Canal. Approximately 12% of global trade passes through these waterways, so these attacks have significantly disrupted global trade. In response, the U.S. and its allies are escorting commercial vessels through these waterways. Some international shipping companies have temporarily stopped operating in these areas, forced to take longer and more expensive routes.
The result of Israel’s war on Gaza and the various forces that are engaged in the conflict means we are in a highly volatile situation, with the prospect of a full-scale regional war developing at any moment. And given the alliances the regimes of these countries have with Russia, China and other countries, the threat of an even wider war looms in the background.
Israel’s war on the Palestinians is only possible because of the full support of the U.S. government. It has given more than $300 billion in military aid to Israel since the 1950s, to play the role of U.S. cop in the region. This threat of even greater slaughter is terrifying. It means we must organize and be even more active. We must mobilize and broaden our forces against this genocidal war on the Palestinians and the other peoples of the Middle East. And we need to oppose the continued U.S. domination of the Middle East that the U.S. government carries out in our name.