The fight to free Palestine is inseparable from the British socialist revolution!

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IN response to a pledge by US President-elect Donald Trump to move the American embassy in Israel to Jerusalem, Palestinian ambassador to the United Nations Riyad Mansour has threatened to ‘unleash all of the weapons that we have in the UN against the United States’.

Last Tuesday, Trump won the US presidential election and his victory was greeted with enthusiasm by Israel, with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu calling him ‘a true friend of the State of Israel’. During the annual conference of the Palestine Centre in Washington, D.C., Mansour said that an embassy move would represent a violation of UN General Assembly Resolution 181 regarding the status of Jerusalem, and constitute ‘belligerency’ towards Palestinians.

‘If the US administration wants to defy international law they are doing something illegal. I hope they will do nothing,’ Mansour said. He added that: ‘If they do that nobody should blame us for unleashing all of the weapons that we have in the UN to defend ourselves, and we have a lot of weapons in the UN,’ Mansour added.

The fate of Jerusalem has been a focal point of the Palestinian struggle for decades, with numerous major clashes arising over Israeli threats regarding the status of non-Jewish religious sites in the city, and the ‘Judaisation’ of East Jerusalem through settlement construction and mass demolitions of Palestinian homes.

In fact 2017 will be a decisive year for the UK and Palestine, and the workers of the world. It is of course the 100th anniversary of the October Revolution, when the Russian workers opened the floodgates of the world socialist revolution as well as the battle for national liberation by taking power. Their revolution inspired the oppressed nations to turn on their imperialist oppressors, and in the case of China and Vietnam to break the chains of both imperialism and capitalism, with the working class taking the power.

However, it is also the 100th anniversary of the Balfour Declaration, that notorious statement by British imperialism, then the major world power and exploiter, promising Zionism that it would have the backing of British imperialism to seize Palestine. The current Palestinian leadership of President Mahmoud Abbas has said 2017 will become the year when the Israeli occupation of Palestinian comes to an end, in an address to the General Assembly of the United Nations.

He added: ‘We ask Great Britain, as we approach 100 years since this infamous declaration, to draw the necessary lessons and to bear its historic, legal, political, material and moral responsibility for the consequences of this declaration, including an apology to the Palestinian people for the catastrophes, misery and injustice this declaration created and to act to rectify these disasters and remedy its consequences, including by the recognition of the state of Palestine. This is the least Great Britain can do.’

However, the British ruling class has not the slightest intention to put right the wrong of the Balfour Declaration. It is standing with Israel which is confident that Trump is their man, and that he will do for them no less than what Bush did for Israel on December 2-3 1989. Then, just a few weeks after the fall of the Berlin Wall, Bush met Gorbachev, and both declared the end of the ‘Cold War’, with Bush getting a declaration from Gorbachev to allow unlimited Jewish emigration from the USSR to Israel, a deal that provided Israel with hundreds of thousands of new settlers.

The Palestinians are determined that they will not once again become the victims of Great Power diplomacy as they did in both 1917, and 1989, as Trump seeks to make a deal with Putin, and vice versa.

2017 must not just be the year when the British working class seeks to emulate the revolutionary victory of the Bolsheviks. It must be the year that it forces the British ruling class to apologise for the Balfour Declaration and to make good its apology by demanding the end of the occupation of Palestine, and by supporting the establishment of the Palestinian state.

It was Marx that warned the British workers over Ireland, that: ‘A nation that enslaves another forges its own chains.’ In 2017, central to the fight for the British socialist revolution will be the struggle to force the UK ruling class to condemn the Balfour Declaration and recognise the State of Palestine!