Supporters of the Postal Workers Rank-and-File Committee at Royal Mail have responded to the appeal issued by the World Socialist Web Site, “Mobilise workers and youth throughout the world against the Israel’s genocide!”.
Israel’s horrific bombing of the Al-Ahli Arab Baptist hospital in Gaza City, killing more than 500 medical personnel, patients and refugees, is part of a genocidal war against the Palestinians backed by all the major imperialist powers.
The global protests that have erupted in defence of the Palestinians must be urgently expanded by workers to include industrial action against the Israeli war machine and its backers in Washington and London.
On Monday, Palestinian trade unions called on their counterparts around the world to take urgent action to defend the Palestinian people:
“This urgent, genocidal situation can only be prevented by a massive increase in global solidarity with the people of Palestine and that can restrain the Israeli war machine. We need you to take immediate action, wherever you are in the world, to prevent the arming of the Israeli state.”
The World Socialist Web Site calls on workers throughout the world to take up their call for global and targeted industrial action. We invite workers to send information and statements for publication using the form below.
Paul, a victimised union rep from Royal Mail in England’s Midlands explained: “What the British government is doing in backing these atrocities by Israel against the Palestinians is a disgrace. Sunak has announced an extra £10 million in aid for the Palestinian people, but this is a drop in the ocean and how will it get to them anyway? The Tory government and Labour are backing collective punishment by cutting off water, food and fuel.
“This is a war crime 100 percent. How can you have a ‘Sir’ [Keir Starmer] who is the leader of what is meant to be a party for workers? Labour is a Conservative Party Mark II.
“Who have the Palestinians got to defend them? Britain, America and all the NATO powers are backing Israel. The government is sending the Royal Navy to support Israel and US warships. This means Gaza can be attacked from two sidesthe land and sea. Look at what they have done to Iraq, there was no ‘Weapons of Mass Destruction’. The rebuilding of the country was not by or for the people. All the contracts went to the companies and outside powers only interested in oil.
“We cannot lose sight of the fact that innocent people were killed by Hamas, but the Palestinians have suffered atrocities going back to 1948.
“I see this as another example of class war. Israel is a rich country. The Palestinians were driven off their land and into the corners. You see adverts ‘Come to Israel’ not ‘Come to Palestine.’ I still find it hard to believe that Israel is carrying out crimes against the Palestinians which are not much different from what the Jews suffered during World War II by the Nazis. Starving people, depriving them of all the necessities of life—essentially genocide.
“I agree that workers should take industrial action to prevent the arms to Israel and the military build-up. If you look at the Vietnam War, mass protests in America played a big part in the US having to pull out.
“It is important to get the message over that support for the Palestinians does not equal anti-Semitism. This is not about Jews against Palestinians or Arabs. This is not about religion or nationality. We should all be able to coexist and live in peace. But you cannot have that the way the world is run today. The top one percent want to control all the wealth and 99 percent of the people.”
Ian, a Royal Mail worker in the northwest of England, strongly endorsed the call by workers to intervene and bring an end to the siege of Gaza: “It is totally right to call for the working class internationally to come to the defence of the Palestinians. All the accusations of anti-Semitism and racism are a ruse to prevent ordinary working class people from getting involved. The protests around the world have been more than pockets of resistance.
“There is no doubt that what is happening are war crimes by Israel. They are now heavily bombing the south of Gaza where people are trying to escape. This is a major land grab to drive the Gazans into the sea, backed by all the major powers.
“I first became aware of the plight of the Palestinians in the 1990’s, after leaving school with poor qualifications and went straight into work. This was through the trade union movement and the Palestine Solidarity Campaign [PSC] and reading graphic novels such as Joe Sacco’s Palestine. But the Communication Workers Union and all the trade unions have undermined any genuine solidarity. I joined the millions who marched against the Iraq War in 2003. I thought we were on the verge of real change, but these protests lost all momentum and petered out.
“The Labour Party is just as guilty of these war crimes. Starmer is part of the same political establishment. At the recent Labour Party conference, the PSC fringe meeting was told they could not speak about Israeli apartheid against Palestinians, and members have been threatened with expulsion if they march and show support for the Palestinians. People are not going to be told by a far-right Tory government who they can support and have their right to protest taken away.
“When they make these accusations of anti-Semitism it is also to hide their shame. During World War II they left the ships of Jewish refugees out at sea and refused them sanctuary and then abandoned the Palestinians with the founding of Israel. There are also two million Arabs in Israel who are treated as second class citizens under the Nation State Law.
“The Ukraine war against Russia has been glorified, but the NATO powers have been assimilating fascists into the Ukrainian military. The government in Israel is made up of far-right and fascistic forces who incite against Arabs. None of these are friends of the Jewish people.
“I fully agree with the need for the working class to halt the war machine. Dockers should refuse to handle arms shipments, and every sector of workers should get involved. The swords should be beaten into ploughshares. I think the powers-that-be have been shaken and this is a catalyst for long overdue change.”
Keith, a delivery worker at Royal Mail in London, added his voice to the call for worldwide action against the gang-up by Britain and other major powers with Israel: “I strongly condemn the imperialist-backed Zionist onslaught against Gaza!
“The deliberate blockade of basic resources such as water and electricity is a war crime. In a densely populated area of 2.3 million people, the prospect of more mass deaths is only a few days away. The deliberate targeting of health workers in Gaza hospitals and the murder of Gazan health personnel is an unspeakable act of barbarism.
“I call on all workers, including postal workers in Britain and worldwide, to oppose this slaughter and demand that Israel and its partner in crime, the United States, end this brutal war and keep its greedy hands off the Middle East.”