HAMAS, the Palestinian resistance movement which recently fought a successful 11 day war with Israel against its occupation of Palestine, has condemned the participation of four Arab states alongside Israel in a US-led anti-Russian NATO war game codenamed ‘Sea Breeze’.
It said that the participation of Egypt, Morocco, Tunisia and the United Arab Emirates (UAE) in the military exercise is a ‘betrayal’ of the Palestinian struggle against the Israeli occupation.
In a statement released on Monday, Hamas said: ‘We condemn the participation of Arab and Muslim countries in military manoeuvres with the Zionist regime.’
It added that such involvement is ‘a betrayal of the Palestinian nation and its just cause,’ and called on the Arab states to immediately withdraw from the event and boycott any joint civil and military activities with the Zionist regime.
‘Partnership with the regime occupying the Palestinian territories not only legitimises the existence of this regime, but also strengthens its evil plans to Judaize Jerusalem al-Quds, annex the Palestinian lands, displace the Palestinians from their homes and commit atrocities.’
Hamas added that it is, instead, looking forward to seeing Muslim nations mobilise their forces and participate in military exercises in defence of the Palestinian nation against oppression and in preparation ‘for the great battle to liberate Palestine’.
The four Arab states are among the 32 states taking part in the Sea Breeze naval exercise in the Black Sea co-hosted by the US Navy’s Sixth Fleet and the Ukrainian Navy. Israeli naval forces are also taking part in these maritime war games which began on June 28 and will end on July 10.
The anti-Russian exercise involves 5,000 troops, 32 vessels, 40 aircraft, and 18 diving and commando teams.
The US Navy said that the 12-day drill will include, among other things, ‘amphibious warfare, land manoeuvre warfare, diving operations, maritime interdiction operations, air defence, special operations integration, anti-submarine warfare, and search and rescue operations.’
It is part of the current war preparations of the US-UK NATO-led powers against Russia.
Russian Foreign Minister Sergey Lavrov has condemned the naval exercise saying: ‘We will respond harshly and decisively to unfriendly actions.’
Lavrov said that, immediately after the Biden-Putin summit in Geneva last month, US officials resumed their aggressive rhetoric toward Russia and continued to threaten to exert new pressure on Moscow if it failed to accept ‘the rules of the game’ outlined in the summit.
Tensions between Russia and Ukraine and its NATO backers have escalated over Russia’s reclaiming of the Crimea, and the Peoples Republics that have been established in the Donbass region of Ukraine.
The Putin-Biden summit did not bring any thaw in relations. Only days after the meeting, US National Security Adviser Jake Sullivan said that Washington would maintain sanctions against Russian companies involved in the construction of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to Germany.
Nord Stream 2, which would take gas from the Russian Arctic to Germany under the Baltic Sea, is set to double Russian natural gas shipments to Europe’s largest economy. The Russian-German project has been beset by sanctions by the US and some EU states.
However, Russian President Putin has announced the completion of the first line of the Nord Stream 2 gas pipeline to Germany despite US objections.
Arab states who join Israel in the US-UK anti-Russian manoeuvres in the Black Sea are not just stabbing the Palestinian people in the back, they are taking action against the interests of all of the Arab peoples throughout the Middle East and North Africa.
Arab workers must demand that the four Arab states break off their military alliance with Israel and US and UK imperialism.
Hamas is right. These states should be mobilising their forces for military exercises in preparation for the great battle to liberate Palestine. If their ruling classes will not, then they must be removed and replaced by the revolutionary action of the Arab peoples!