Amid reports that Israel is carrying out mass executions of civilian prisoners in Gaza and open statements of genocidal intent by Israeli politicians, the US has doubled down on its support for Israel’s war on Palestinian civilians. Before the eyes of the whole world, the bloodbath in Gaza is emerging as “America’s genocide.”
On Wednesday, the United Nations and Euro-Med Human Rights Monitor published reports accusing Israeli forces of carrying out a mass execution of civilians in northern Gaza. Having either driven away or killed all remaining journalists in the north, Israel has moved from massacring civilians through bombing to summary executions.
These war crimes are accompanied by the open advocacy of genocide by Israeli officials, not merely in veiled biblical references, as with Israeli Prime Minister Netanyahu’s invocation of “Amalek,” but in direct calls to copy the Nazi genocide of the Jews:
- In a radio interview Sunday, David Azoulai, head of Israel’s regional Metula Council, said that Gaza should be made to look like “Auschwitz.” He said, “Tell everyone in Gaza to go to the beaches. Navy ships should load the terrorists onto the shores of Lebanon. The entire Gaza Strip should be emptied and leveled flat, just like in Auschwitz.”
- In a TV interview, Miri Golan, Israel’s Women’s Advancement Minister, said, “I don’t care about Gaza … for all I care, they can go out and swim in the sea.” She added, “I want to see dead bodies of terrorists around Gaza.”
- Daniella Weiss, the former mayor of an Israeli settlement in the West Bank and a leader of the Israeli settler movement, said in a TV interview that Israel’s goal is to make “Gaza free of Arabs” to prepare “the establishment of Jewish settlements in all of the Gaza Strip.”
Israel is starving the 2.2 million people of Gaza. On Monday, Human Rights Watch accused Israel of having “an intent to starve civilians as a method of warfare.” According to the World Food Program, the share of Gazans experiencing “very severe hunger levels” has surged from 24 percent to 44 percent.
Against this backdrop, the United States has deepened its categorical support for Israel’s genocide. In a press briefing Wednesday, Secretary of State Antony Blinken was asked by a reporter to comment on the fact that “much of the world [is] blaming the US and Israel” and “seeing it as America’s war.”
Critically, Blinken did not attempt to distance himself from the claim that Israel is waging “America’s war.” Instead, he doubled down:
I hear virtually no one saying, demanding of Hamas, that it stop hiding behind civilians, that it lay down its arms, that it surrender. This is over tomorrow, if Hamas does that this would have been over a month ago, six weeks ago, if Hamas had done that. How can it be that there are no demands made of the aggressor, and only demands made of the victim?
Blinken’s assertion that the Israeli government is the “victim” in the conflict is so absurd as to not even merit refutation. After orchestrating a deliberate military and intelligence stand-down on October 7, the Netanyahu government has massacred 25 Gazans for every Israeli killed that day. While seizing on the October 7 attacks to proclaim itself a “victim” of the Palestinians it oppresses and dominates, the Netanyahu government moved to implement what Israeli Agriculture Minister Avi Dichter called a “Gaza Nakba 2023”—the ethnic cleansing of the Gaza Strip.
With a level of cynicism comparable only to officials of the Third Reich, Blinken proclaimed that Israel’s goal is not to massacre the population of Gaza but to protect them. “Israel conducts its operations, again, with a focus on protecting civilians, minimizing harm, and maximizing assistance getting to them,” he claimed.
In a follow-up question, Blinken was asked, “Is there a red line for you?” regarding how many people Israel will be allowed to massacre. To this, Blinken replied that the United States is “intent on seeing this through to completion.”
Blinken’s comments came after US President Joe Biden admitted at a campaign event that Israel was carrying out “indiscriminate bombings”—a crime under international law—and conceded that Israel’s defense minister is seeking “retribution … against all Palestinians.”
If one puts together the comments by Biden and Blinken, the clear conclusion is that “retribution … against all Palestinians” is, in fact, “America’s war” or more precisely, America’s genocide.
Throughout this entire process, the United States has provided financial, logistical and military support for the genocide, while running interference at the United Nations for the mass murder of Palestinians. Last year, the US provided Israel with $3.3 billion in economic aid, adding to the $260 billion provided by the US since the end of the Second World War. Over the past 10 weeks, the US has provided Israel with 10,000 tons of military equipment, including armored vehicles, armaments and ammunition. The US and UK have carried out drone surveillance flights over Gaza, and there have even been reports of US personnel operating on the ground.
Even more critically, the United States has vowed to veto any Security Council resolution calling for a ceasefire in the war, with its UN Ambassador Linda Thomas-Greenfield declaring, “Any ceasefire right now would be temporary at best and dangerous at worst.”
There are deep-rooted and fundamental reasons why the United States is supporting the genocide in Gaza. First, the US has clearly decided to carry out a major military escalation in the Middle East, as part of what it sees as an existential struggle for world hegemony aimed at dominating China, Russia, and Iran. Israel, which effectively functions as a garrison state for US imperialism in the Middle East, is a critical component of this plan.
Second, amid a growing strike movement and mounting domestic political opposition, the Biden administration is seeking to create a precedent for dealing with rebellious urban areas through mass murder. For those factions of the US oligarchy seeking to solve the domestic political crisis through dictatorship, the genocide in Gaza is seen as a testing ground.
Finally, the genocide has become the occasion for the implementation of a massive crackdown on democratic rights. Throughout Europe, demonstrations have been banned, and protesters have been arrested simply for opposing Zionism. In the United States, university student groups have been disbanded, and academics and students have lost their positions for opposing US foreign policy. Social media networks have implemented a draconian regime of internet censorship, in what Human Rights Watch called a “pattern of undue removal and suppression of protected speech, including peaceful expression in support of Palestine.”
From this reality arises the inevitable conclusion that the struggle against the genocide in Gaza is the fight against the imperialist governments that are enabling it.
Describing the rise of fascism in the 20th century, Leon Trotsky wrote that “capitalist society is puking up” its “undigested barbarism.” The Gaza genocide represents the same process. The capitalist social order, with America at the head, is putting on display before the whole world its homicidal barbarism. This social order offers humanity nothing but rampant social inequality, war and mass murder.
The fight against the genocide in Gaza must, for that reason, become the struggle for the socialist transformation of society through the building of a mass movement in the working class. Workers must prepare strikes at docks and airports to prevent the shipment of any items to Israel with a military use, as part of the systematic preparation for a political general strike against the war.