proposed amendments on palestine



Replace point 17 with:

17. The fundamental and programmatic elements of the general positions expressed by the Trotskyist movement at the moment of the development and the birth of the Zionist state remain fully valid. It is necessary to reaffirm and develop them in light of the historical process of the last 50 years and the reality of the current situation.

This implies that the positions of revolutionary Marxists on the Intifada and the Palestinian question in general are the following:

a. Trotskyists express their full and unconditional support for the revolt of the Arab people of Palestine and are for its development "by any means necessary" (with the exception of indiscriminate terrorism against the civilian population of Israel).

b. The struggle for the self-determination and liberation of the Palestinian people from the oppression of Zionism and imperialism and for the constitution of an independent Arab state of Palestine (the central demand of the present revolt) is historically fully legitimate and progressive. In this framework Trotskyists support the full and total right of all the Palestinian refuges to return to historical Palestine (whether in the borders of pre-1967 Israel or in the occupied territories) from which they or their descendents were driven out by the Zionist offensive, and the recovery of their abandoned property (or financial compensation where that is impossible) and adequate economic support for the return at the expense of Zionism and imperialism.

c. Trotskyists reject the perspective of the Oslo accords, the "Clinton Plan", or other analogous projects, that is, the creation of a kind of "Palestinian Bantustan" formed on a small part of historical Palestine from territories substantially under Israeli military control, with its borders controlled by the Zionist armed forces in name of the "national security" of Israel, without any economic viability, and subject to an unacceptable series of external, internal, military, and political restrictions. This would be a state only formally independent, an "Indian reservation" of a low-paid workforce for Israeli capitalism.

d. Trotskyists also reject the whole perspective of the construction of a Palestinian mini-state in just the territories occupied by Israel in 1967, which today is the goal of the Arafat leadership. The constitution of such a state on less than a quarter of the territory of historical Palestine would not represent the true realization of the desire for national liberation of the Palestinian Arab people. Particularly, it would make meaningless the perspective of the return of the refugees.

e. The perspective of the liberation of the Palestinian people and the constitution of their independent state implies the destruction of the Zionist state of Israel, an artificial creation which by its nature oppresses the Palestinian Arab people and is an imperialist bridgehead in the whole region of the Middle East and beyond. This destruction doesn't mean denying the democratic rights of the Jewish people who live in Palestine. Their presence is by now historically consolidated and must be recognized and respected. Nevertheless, the national rights of the Jewish people in Palestine must be subordinated to the priority rights of the oppressed Arab Palestinian people to self-determination and the constitution of their independent state.

f. The struggle for the liberation of the Palestinian people cannot be won in isolation. It has to find the support and backing of the Arab masses. The revolutionary mobilization of the Arab people must be based on the perspective not only of solidarity with the Palestinian people but also of the anti-imperialist liberation of the Arab nation.

g. But a perspective such as the full and final liberation of the Palestinian people makes no sense in the framework of capitalism. The only realistic solution is that delineated by the permanent revolution. The destruction of the Zionist state, like the unification of the Arab nation, is in fact inconceivable without a socialist revolution. The perspective can only be that of a socialist Palestine within the Arab nation unified on a socialist basis.

h. This revolutionary process, in turn, can and must involve the whole of the Middle East and the North Africa, bringing into being a political and economic entity strong enough to confront the imperialist reaction. The perspective must, therefore, be a Socialist Federation of the Middle East and North Africa that unifies on a voluntary basis the various peoples of this region, including those today oppressed by Arab regimes, such as the Berbers and the Kurds.

To realize this program it is necessary to build a new leadership of the mass movement. A leadership that fights for the overthrow not only of the Israeli regime, but also of the bourgeois, feudal-bourgeois, clerical-bourgeois, and petty-bourgeois regimes of the Arab countries and of the other states of the region. These are direct agents of imperialist rule or only demagogically and accidentally "anti-imperialist", reactionaries and oppressors of the masses, guarantors of the exploitation of the proletariat and the semiproletariat of their own countries.

For this it is necessary to build revolutionary Marxist parties, united in a refounded Fourth International, parties which are built firstly in the proletariat of each country, which fight for working-class hegemony in the mass anti-imperialist movement, contrasting themselves with all the current leaderships, "reactionary" (such as the Islamic fundamentalists) or bourgeois or petty-bourgeois "progressive" (such as the Arafat leadership), and which, dialectically unifying national and democratic demands with social demands, lead the revolution to victory and transcendence, without loss of continuity, into socialist revolution ("The dictatorship of the proletariat which has risen to power as the leader of the democratic revolution is inevitably and, very quickly confronted with tasks, the fulfillment of which is bound up with deep inroads into the rights of bourgeois property. The democratic revolution grows over directly into the socialist revolution and thereby becomes a permanent revolution." Trotsky, Theses on the Permanent Revolution).


Submitted by: Franco Grisolia (Progetto Comunista)


Votes against: Majority

Votes in favor: 7 votes

Abstentions: 1 votes


Votes against: Majority

Votes in favor: 1 votes

Abstentions: none

Observation: the Presidium of the Congress don't record the figure of the majority votes