Coexistence or No Existence. End Occupation. End Apartheid

Statement from the Jewish Socialists' Group

The Jewish Socialists’ Group stands for a future of peace and coexistence for the people in Israel and Palestine that can only be based on equality, justice, freedom and an end to occupation, colonisation and apartheid practices that reflect racist and fascist values of supremacy.

That future of co-existence was pushed much further away on Saturday 7th October, when, in a single day, more than 500 people’s lives were taken, Palestinian and Israeli, the vast majority of them civilians. We stand fully behind the right to resist occupation and oppression and the siege of Gaza. We stand also against the targeting of civilians, and our opposition to acts of terror against civilians applies equally whether they are carried out by individuals, resistance movements or state armies. 

Israel’s Prime Minister Benyamin Netanyahu declared a state of war in response to the action of resistance fighters from Gaza on Saturday morning. That state of war against Palestinian aspirations for equality and freedom from occupation has existed for decades. When Israel passed its Nation State law in 2018, it wrote longstanding discriminatory practices into its “Basic Laws”.

When openly declared racists and fascists were welcomed into Israel’s cabinet after the last elections in November 2022, the oppression of the Palestinians increased in intensity. Settlers in the occupied West Bank have carried out pogroms with impunity. Hundreds of Palestinian civilians have been killed, many more wounded, arrested and imprisoned, and homes demolished in 2023 before last Saturday’s events. As Jewish Socialists we are against fascism everywhere.

Palestinian and Israeli human rights bodies have come under attack. Attempts to support Palestinians internationally through peaceful boycott activities have come under attack. Those Israelis who have joined Palestinians in protests together against occupation and apartheid have experienced increasingly violent oppression from the Israeli authorities.

We stand with those young Israelis who are refusing army service on political grounds in unprecedented numbers. They are part of a future that can build coexistence based on justice, equality and freedom.

Posted: 8 October 2023