Condemnation of Hamas Military Offensive Must Not Mean Condoning Israel's Continuing Enslavement of Palestinians and Endorsing Israel's War on Palestine! India Must Work for Peace and Political Solution!
The October 7 surprise military offensive launched by Hamas on Israeli soil exposed the mythical powers attributed to Israel's intelligence and security system and took the heaviest toll of Israeli lives in Israel's recent history. While the international community condemned the Hamas offensive and its brutal nature, Israel has turned it into a pretext to launch a genocidal war on the people of Gaza. Israeli Defence Minister Yoav Gallant has called Palestinians ‘human animals’ and the 'state of war' declared on Gaza entails actions including stopping all food supplies, water, electricity and fuel alongside a bombing campaign targeting hospitals, schools and homes.
We appeal to the international community and the United Nations to intervene to save the lives of the more than 2 million people, nearly half of them children, who are trapped in the densely populated ‘open air concentration camp’ of Gaza. Shamefully, we are seeing the US administration and its allies once again escalating military support for Israel, emboldening it to commit further war crimes.
We also urge vigilance against the spreading of inflammatory fake news concerning the fate of Israeli hostages, some of which apparently originates from India and the Sanghi ecosystem. Hamas’ large scale hostage-taking appears to have been driven by past experience where Israel proved to be willing to exchange one captured Israeli soldier for 1,000 Palestinian political prisoners. This time the demand has been for all Palestinian political prisoners, including the many who have not been accused of any crime and the many children who are tortured and locked up for years in Israeli jails, to be released.
Narendra Modi was quick to express solidarity with Israel in the wake of the Hamas offensive but has kept quiet about the genocidal war declared by Israel on Gaza. Given the long history of colonial occupation of Palestine and the ongoing dispossession and oppression of its people, the only acceptable role for India is to help seek a political solution upholding the Palestinian right to a sovereign homeland, which is the only possible route to peace.
The BJP is trying to draw a false parallel between terrorist attacks in India and the present Hamas offensive. Yet again, the Modi government and the BJP have turned a blind eye to the occupation and crimes perpetrated against the Palestinians, and are seeking to instrumentalise this situation to further fan the flames of hate against India’s own Muslim community. Students of Aligarh Muslim University have been booked for expressing solidarity with Palestine and a UP Minister has described AMU as a terrorist hub. Expressions of solidarity with Palestine are being branded as terrorism and 'jihad'.
We should remember that the enslavement of Palestine began around the same time India attained freedom from British colonial rule. Independent India has been a consistent votary of the Palestinian cause and the Vajpayee government too maintained this traditional Indian position. The Modi government seeks a drastic shift in India's consistent policy approach by turning India into a strategic ally of Israel.
Condemnation of a military offensive against Israel must not degenerate into condoning of or complicity with Israel's genocidal war on Gaza and the oppressed Palestinian peoole. Indian foreign policy must work for immediate de-escalation of violence and enforcement of ceasefire and peace and facilitation of a political solution upholding the Palestinian right to freedom in a sovereign homeland.
- Central Committee, CPIML