Stop the Genocide –
Cease-fire Now!

For an Anti-Imperialist Solidarity Movement!

A Statement by the League for the Revolutionary Party

January 13, 2024

We march in Washington today because the U.S. government is the chief backer of Israel’s campaign of annihilation against the Palestinian people in Gaza, in the face of worldwide horror and outrage. President Biden hypocritically warns Netanyahu against Israel’s “indiscriminate bombing” but nevertheless continues his indiscriminate arming of the Israeli war machine, to the point of bypassing Congress to do so.

Many factors contribute to Washington’s support for Israel, but the key role Israel has played as an imperialist outpost dividing and conquering the economically crucial Middle East is decisive. Years ago Biden spelled this out in especially blunt terms, declaring Israel to be “the best 3 billion dollar investment we make. Were there not an Israel, the United States of America would have to invent an Israel to protect our interests in the region.”

But Israel is no mere puppet of the U.S., and its onslaught against the Palestinians is destabilizing the imperialist world order. Washington had claimed the moral high ground by decrying the horrors of Russia’s invasion of Ukraine and backing the latter, in the name of defending the mythical “rules-based order.” Israel’s leaders are making a mockery of those pretensions, openly boasting of their genocidal plans while their military flagrantly follows through with wanton carnage and destruction targeting Gaza’s civilian population.

The obvious criminality of Israel’s war has prompted Biden to begin timidly urging Netanyahu to follow the so-called rules of war. But the Israeli leader is contemptuously flouting those warnings. Now Biden has to fear even greater destabilization of the region, as Netanyahu attempts to provoke Hezbollah into going to war against it by directing the Israeli military to conduct frequent attacks in Lebanon. For Netanyahu, a wider war would serve as continued cover for his onslaught against the Palestinians (and help keep him in power), and he seems confident that the U.S. would have no choice but to support him should Hezbollah conduct a major counter-attack.

Biden also has to worry about the massive global opposition to Israel’s genocidal destruction of Gaza. Millions of people have taken to the streets in solidarity with the Palestinians, who are on the front lines of the struggle against colonialism and imperialism. Washington is especially fearful that mass protests in the Middle East could re-awaken the revolutionary demands for democratic freedoms, social justice, and economic relief that threatened to topple dictatorships a decade ago in the inspiring Arab Spring uprisings. Israel’s racist disregard for Palestinian lives is also sabotaging U.S.-brokered diplomatic agreements between Israel and Arab states.

In the U.S., opposition to Israel’s war extends far beyond the Arab and Muslim Americans and leftists who were the mainstays of the pro-Palestinian movement in the past. Trade unions are taking a stand in solidarity with the Palestinians for the first time. The growing number of young Jewish Americans protesting in solidarity with the Palestinians has been particularly important; they reject the Zionists’ use of the Nazi holocaust as an excuse for genocidal crimes by raising the slogan “Never Again for Anyone,” and they challenge Israel’s claim to represent all Jews by the simple declaration “Not in My Name!” For the first time a substantial proportion of the U.S. population sees through Israel’s fraudulent claim to embody democracy and civilization in the Middle East; a majority favors a cease-fire and opposes Biden’s all-out support for Netanyahu.

On the other hand, Israel’s war is providing new fuel for the far right and has triggered a sharp rise in racist attacks on Arabs and Muslims especially, including the heinous murder of 6-year-old Wadea Al-Fayoume in Illinois in October. There has also been a rise in anti-Semitic attacks. Israel is backed to the hilt by the white Christian supremacists, ardent Zionists as well as anti-Semites – they want all Jews to leave the U.S. and “return” to Israel. It is telling that powerful supporters of Israel like Senator Schumer denounce anti-Semitism on the left – but had no qualms about sharing a platform with real anti-Semites like Rev. John (“Hitler-was-Jewish”) Hagee at the Rally for Israel in Washington in November. It is Israel’s imperialist service that the U.S. ruling class welcomes, not its supposed dedication to the well-being of Jewish people.

Meanwhile fascists like Jackson Hinkle have cynically been posing as supporters of the Palestinians in order to advance their anti-Semitic agenda. This dangerous development underscores the importance of exposing and rejecting anti-Jewish bigotry every time it appears.

Israel’s War on Palestine

The Palestinian people’s most urgent demand is “Cease-fire Now!” to stop Israel’s slaughter: tens of thousands have been killed in Gaza already, with the overwhelming majority of victims being women, children and the elderly. Several hundred people in the West Bank have also been killed, by the Israeli military and fascistic settlers bent on eliminating the scattered areas the Palestinians have left.

The Palestinians and their supporters have also raised the slogan: “Palestine will be free, From the [Jordan] River to the [Mediterranean] Sea!” – a demand for the end of racial and national oppression in the entire territory under Israeli occupation: post-1948 Israel, the West Bank, Jerusalem and the Gaza Strip. Zionists and their allies declare this slogan to be anti-Semitic – because equal rights for Palestinians threatens the existence of Israel as a “Jewish state.” But Israel is not as advertised, a haven for Jews fleeing oppression. It is inherently a Jewish-supremacist, colonialist state built on territory that has been the homeland of Palestinian people – Arabs, Jews and others – for centuries. The only just and democratic solution is to replace Israel with a state in which all residents have equal citizenship and democratic rights.

We must also be clear that the decision by Hamas to attack civilian targets on October 7 was indefensible. Aside from the suffering caused, these acts betrayed the interests of the Palestinian people, especially by giving Israel’s rulers the excuse to unleash the genocidal ethnic cleansing that they have long wished for.

Of course, the demand that supporters of the Palestinian cause “condemn Hamas” is totally hypocritical when it comes from those who condone Israel’s onslaught. Moreover, Hamas’s attacks on military targets on October 7 were consistent with the right of oppressed people to armed self-defense against their oppressors. And the ongoing military defense of Gaza against Israel’s invasion, by Hamas and others, is fully justified and should be supported by all who stand for the defeat of colonialist oppression and domination.

Which way forward for the solidarity movement?

A new movement against imperialist war and oppression is building. It is excellent that there have been many and frequent protests against this war in cities across the U.S. But it is a shame and a tragedy that there have been no mass protests against other examples of imperialist or colonialist violence in recent years, like Russia’s bombing and invasion of Ukraine. A genuine movement of international solidarity and opposition to unjust wars has to ask why this is.

One reason is that some of the most prominent organizations sponsoring today’s protest – notably those leading the ANSWER Coalition, the International Action Center and the United National Antiwar Coalition (UNAC) – are selective internationalists. They protest the crimes of U.S. imperialism and its allies, but they tolerate, deny or even favor those of powers that are rivals of Washington. They oppose popular liberation struggles that confront rulers who they see as belonging to a supposed “anti-imperialist camp” led by Russia and China.

For example, these “campist” organizations defended Syria’s neo-liberal dictator Bashar al-Assad against the popular revolution that broke out as part of the “Arab Spring” in 2011 – even though among Assad’s crimes was the mass murder of Palestinians in Syrian refugee camps. Just as many U.S. liberals make a “Palestinian exception” in supporting democratic rights of oppressed peoples, the campists, while siding with Palestinians against their most immediate oppressor, make their own Palestinian exception for those under the boot of the fake anti-imperialist Assad.

Then there is Ukraine. The leaders of what purports to be the anti-war movement in the U.S. equate the causes of Israel and Ukraine; they condemn both countries as puppets or allies of U.S. imperialism. Ironically, most U.S. establishment figures, from Biden on down, also claim that the causes of Israel and Ukraine are the same, only from the opposite angle: both countries are allegedly fighting for justice and freedom against barbarism.

These are false equations either way. In fact, Ukraine and Palestine are waging parallel struggles, fighting just wars against colonial powers who wield ethno-nationalism and imperialist privileges to justify their bloody adventures. Like Israel’s assault on Gaza, Russia’s invasion of Ukraine is aimed at re-establishing dominance over a nation that the Tsars and Stalin had once colonized. Ukraine’s war of national self-defense against reconquest deserves the solidarity and support of all democratically minded people.

As if to confirm this similarity, in late December Russia’s foreign minister likened Netanyahu’s goal to “destroy Hamas” with Putin’s promise to demilitarize and “denazify” Ukraine. As if on cue, Russia rained missiles down on Kyiv and Kharkiv, Ukraine’s largest cities, in the biggest air attack of the 2-year invasion. Russia and Israel share the willingness (shared, of course, by the U.S.) to turn densely populated cities into rubble to carry out their imperialist aims, including ethnic cleansing.

Gaza & Mariupol after attacks
Mariupol,Ukraine (top); Gaza, Palestine (bottom). Russia and Israel are waging wars of mass destruction against civilians.

Those on the left who oppose support for Ukraine point to its backing by the U.S. and other Western imperialist powers as their justification. That support derives from the imperialists’ own interest in weakening Russia’s challenge to U.S.-led international authority – not out of genuine concern for Ukraine’s independence. For his part, Putin invaded Ukraine to take advantage of the declining global standing of the U.S. to advance his own state’s power over what he considers Russia’s rightful “sphere of influence.” Socialists and internationalists do not base our policies on fairness to one or another great power: we stand for the interests of the masses of working-class and oppressed people against all oppressors. Ukraine is defending its own national self-determination and independence. As an oppressed nation it has the right to get weapons from wherever it can. Opposition to Ukraine’s armed self-defense amounts to backhanded support for Russia’s war of conquest.

If a genuine movement of international solidarity is to be built, it will have to stand against imperialism and national oppression everywhere.

Solidarity with Palestine and Ukraine!
End All Colonialist Wars and Ethnic Cleansing!

League for the Revolutionary Party (
Check out the Ukraine Socialist Solidarity Campaign on Facebook.
(The USSC is not responsible for the political opinions in this statement.)