On Sunday, the Socialist Equality Party (SEP) held a speakout in Lakemba, a working-class suburb of southwestern Sydney. SEP members campaigned against the Israeli bombardment of Gaza, and the full support it has received from the Australian Labor government and the entire establishment.
They urged residents to attend a meeting tomorrow (Wednesday) evening, at the Lakemba Senior Citizens Centre, 23 Croydon St, Lakemba, which will also be broadcast live via Zoom. Register here.
Lakemba, like the south-west as a whole, is diverse, with residents from all over the world, some of whom have been displaced as a result of wars and conflicts backed by the imperialist powers. Because it has a large Islamic population, Lakemba has frequently been vilified by far-right politicians and media figures, including during the Gaza genocide.
SEP campaigners found almost universal anger over the Israeli genocide. Many noted the utter criminality of what is occurring, and the impossibility of the Zionist regime committing its atrocities, without the support of the US and the other major powers.
Some had a direct personal connection to the events, with family members who had been murdered.
SEP speakers explained that the Wednesday meeting would be directed to the crucial question of “what is to be done?” After more than two months of mass demonstrations, the governments have not wavered in their support for the mass killing of the Palestinians. That is because the genocide is part of an eruption of imperialist militarism, including US-led threats against Iran, Russia and China. It is the true face of a capitalist system that has once again entered into breakdown, posing the alternatives of socialism or barbarism.
The SEP speakers warned against any illusions that Labor’s vote for a United Nations ceasefire resolution last week represented a deviation from the government’s backing for the Israeli state. The resolution was entirely toothless, and even in voting for it, Labor had signalled its unwavering support for the bombardment, suggesting only brief “pauses” to put a humanitarian façade on the unfolding Holocaust.
The SEP emphasised the need for a political struggle against Labor and the entire establishment, aimed at the independent mobilisation of the working class. This included the fight for strike action, to prevent military supplies from reaching Israel, which can only be waged in opposition to the corporatised and Labor-aligned unions, which have done nothing.
Above all, they said what was posed was the need for a revolutionary movement, directed against the source of war, the profit system and the capitalist division of the world into antagonistic nation-states. The mass demonstrations of the past two months had shown that such an international anti-war movement could be built, but it required a political program that had to be fought for.
This perspective will be discussed at the SEP’s public meeting on Wednesday December 20, at 7 p.m. AEDT. The meeting will be held at the Lakemba Senior Citizens Centre, 23 Croydon St, Lakemba, New South Wales, and will also be broadcast live via Zoom. Register here.