General Category > South Tyneside Stop the War

Milibandís Visit to the Middle East: Further Imperialist Machinations


Milibandís Visit to the Middle East: Further Imperialist Machinations

Workers Daily

During the past week, Foreign Secretary David Miliband has been visiting Israel, occupied Palestine, Syria and Lebanon as part of what the Foreign Office refers to as the Middle East peace process.

It should be noted that the Foreign Secretary visited the area following the terrorist attack on Syria by the United States just a few weeks ago and while the Zionist regime in Israel is attempting to blockade the population of Gaza into submission, depriving them of food, medicine, electricity and other necessities and carrying out other crimes in the occupied territories and elsewhere. However, there are no reports of Miliband condemning these atrocities, nor even commenting on them. His visit can therefore clearly be seen as part of the continuing attacks by the Zionist regime and the Anglo-American alliance on the people of this region. The governmentís approach to the so-called Middle East peace process was set out in a speech entitled "Prospects in the Middle East" delivered by Miliband just before his visit to the region when he addressed the Labour Friends of Israel in London on November 4.

What is immediately clear from Milibandís speech is his recognition that the policy of the Anglo-American alliance has run into the determined opposition of the people of the region. That policy has been to continually support the Zionist regimes of Israel as a catís paw in the region and against neighbouring countries; and to attempt to force the Palestinians to relinquish their national rights. It is a policy that has resulted in great crimes being committed against the Palestinian and other peoples of the region and one that has led to instability throughout the Middle East. Nevertheless, it is an approach that Anglo-American imperialism continues to adopt and justify on the most spurious grounds. Despite his best attempts, Miliband failed to find any historical justification for the denial of the rights of the Palestinian people. Rather, he commenced his discourse by stating that the creation of the Israel was a cause for jubilation, that it "was one of the worldís liveliest democracies", and that "a stable Middle East starts with a secure Israel at its heart".

For the government, the principle of the right of self-determination for the people of Palestine and other countries does not exist. In this case, the interests of Anglo-American imperialism, which are based on the existence of a Zionist state of Israel, must prevail. History itself can be distorted to serve these interests, as Miliband demonstrated in his speech when he quoted the findings of the colonial Peel Commission of 1937 to the effect that Palestine should be partitioned. He omitted to mention that this decision was made by a government-appointed body, and only after the British government had encouraged the migration of thousands of Jewish settlers into Palestine, facilitated the purchase and theft of Palestinian land, viciously suppressed major uprisings against its illegal rule in Palestine and committed many other crimes which created a major injustice. These historical injustices in the region remain to be resolved, but Miliband wants to entrench them.

The Foreign Secretary now suggests that what is required to solve the problem of Palestine is a "comprehensive approach", a "new alignment" in the region, involving amongst other things, agreements between Israel and its neighbours Lebanon and particularly Syria. But here what is required by the Anglo-American alliance is that Syria should cease supporting the patriotic forces in Palestine and Iraq, as well as those in Lebanon itself. Milibandís visit and the attack by the US on Syria can therefore be seen as complementing each other. Anglo-American activity in the region and Milibandís visit must also be seen in the context of the threats that are continually issued against Iran, which were again made in Milibandís speech, and the attempts of the alliance to create the conditions for further attacks on Iran. The visit of David Miliband should also be seen as paving the way for further machinations that will undoubtedly follow the inauguration of the new US president in January.

Miliband claims that "to find a way forward, we need first to acknowledge the past", but the British government and its allies show no sign of acknowledging the crimes which it and its predecessors have carried out in regard to Palestine. Rather it continues to pose as an honest broker and the best friend of the peoples of this region, while continually creating the conditions for new crimes and atrocities to take place. It is the duty of the working class and people to empower themselves so as to chart a new course, a modern foreign policy which recognises the right of all peoples to determine their own affairs.

Phil Talbot:
Discusion points:

* I'd agree that Mr Miliband's  Middle East tour involved 'further imperialist machinations'.

* I'd also agree that 'zionists' might well regard Mr Miliband (and New Labour more generally) as 'friend' even 'ally'.

*  But (as voiced at our meetings), although I strongly disagree with his policies and political record (both as local MP and as a British government minister), I am uncomfortable with suggestions that Mr Miliband is himself 'zionist'.
(As it happens / for what it's worth, he's on record as saying his 'only church' is the Labour Party).


[0] Message Index

Go to full version