Rajani Palme Dutt 1947
Source: This declaration, moved by Rajani Palme Dutt and seconded by Emile Touma and S Mikunis (Communist Party of Palestine), was adopted on 3 March 1947 at the Empire Communist Parties Conference, held in London on 26 February to 3 March 1947. Published in Communist (Bombay), Volume 1, no 1, April 1947. Scanned and prepared for the Marxist Internet Archive by Paul Flewers.
This conference of representatives of Communist Parties in the countries of the British Empire extends its warmest greetings and pledges its full support to all the people of Palestine who are struggling for national liberation against the military, political and economic domination of British imperialism, and the economic penetration and strategic plans of American imperialism.
We protest against and condemn the regime of brutal colonial oppression which weighs upon Palestine. We extend our deepest sympathy to the masses who suffer under this rule.
We call for the ending of the imperialist policy which seeks to retain Palestine, not only as an outlet for oil and point for the military control of Suez, but as the strategic base protecting imperialist interests throughout the Middle East, against the interests and rights of its peoples, with the consequent threat to the peace of the world.
We are of the firm conviction that all who love freedom and who seek peace in Palestine and throughout the world should unite to demand and secure the immediate withdrawal of the British troops from Palestine, the abrogation of the Mandate, and the creation of a free, independent and democratic Palestinian state, which will guarantee equal rights of citizenship with full religious freedom and full opportunities to develop their culture to all its inhabitants, Arab and Jewish.
Only thus can Palestine achieve freedom and security, not only from the military forces of imperialism, but from the economic domination of foreign capital which, in whatever guise, seeks to exploit the peoples of Palestine and crush their movement for national liberation. This is not a matter for Anglo-American manoeuvring. Let the United Nations support the people of Palestine in their struggle to secure the independence of their country now.
We greet the rising forces of the Arab national movement, which is daily gathering strength throughout the Middle East in the struggle for liberation, and the growing forces among the Jewish masses in Palestine who realise that they have a part to play in the common struggle with the Arabs to free Palestine from the imperialist hold.
We warn all Jewish people that Zionism, which seeks to make Palestine or part of Palestine a Jewish state as an ally of the imperialist powers and their base in the Middle East, diverts Jewish people from the real solution of the problem of anti-Semitism, which is along the lines of democratic development and full equality of rights within the countries where they live. It is in the interests of Palestine Jewry to oppose the Zionist conception which seeks to put them in the position of being an instrument of imperialism in the Middle East, in opposition to the struggle for national liberation in Palestine, in opposition to the progressive forces in the democratic countries in Europe, and against the Soviet Union.
But not only has Anglo-American imperialism used Zionism in pursuit of its policy of divide and rule; it also seeks to secure the support of reactionary Arab elements to strengthen the Middle East as a base for operations against the Soviet Union and against the liberation movement of the masses throughout the Middle East.
We have to warn the Arab people against those Arab reactionary elements who are ready to betray the movement for national liberation, upon securing the support of imperialism for their sectional interests against the interests of the masses.
We in this conference, therefore, appeal to the Arabs and Jews in Palestine to recognise that it is in their mutual interest to join in common struggle against imperialism.
At the same time the wider problems facing Jewish people all over the world are not the problems of Palestine. Anti-Semitism, a weapon carried to barbaric extremes by fascism, is a weapon used by the ruling class to split and divert the masses of the people away from the struggle for their real interests.
No man or woman today can think of the plight of Jewry without burning memories of Maidanek and Belsen, without feelings of profound horror at the crimes committed by the fascists against European Jewry, and without expressing their deep sympathy with those who have survived this horror.
It is the duty of all free peoples to succour these victims of fascism. It is their duty to demand the closing of the camps in which some of these victims are still housed, and to aid in their re-establishment in their own countries. We welcome the new status of freedom which Jewry has attained, not only within the Soviet Union, but within the New Democracies in Europe, a position which should inspire Jewry throughout the world to intensify its struggle for this democratic solution in all countries. For those who, full of bitter memories of past persecution, do not wish to return, we demand that as an emergency measure, Britain, Australia, Canada, the USA and other free countries shall provide opportunities for their resettlement in these countries, so that these victims of fascism may find there new hope and new life.
No democrat would wish to force immigration on Palestine by imperialist power against the wishes of its people. We believe that the question of immigration into Palestine can only be determined by the people of an independent and democratic Palestine. But we are well aware that throughout history there has been no enmity between Arab and Jew until the imperialists used Zionism to attempt to divide and disrupt the Middle East. And we believe that conscious of the terrible suffering inflicted on European Jewry by fascism, a free, independent Palestine, in association with the other free countries in the world, would be as ready to offer succour and security to the victims of fascism as would any other free country.
We therefore express our earnest hope that the forces of the Arab national movement, and the progressive forces within Palestine Jewry, recognising their identity of interest, will move rapidly towards their common goal, and to this end will seek to create among Arabs and Jews in Palestine those conditions which can ensure, not only political agreement, but common action and unity in the struggle for the liberation of their country.
We confidently believe that progressive and democratic forces in other countries will give support to the struggle of the Palestinian people, and in their own countries will combat anti-Semitism and aid Jews to expose the Zionist illusions that have been spread, and thus win them for the common struggle for freedom and democracy.
This is the way forward for Palestine.
This is the way forward to help European Jewry.
This is the way forward to strengthen the forces fighting for peace and democracy throughout the world.
G Adhikari (India)
Tim Buck (Canada)
Desmond Buckle (West Africa)
Danie J Du-Plessis (South Africa)
John L Henry (Australia)
S Joannou (Cyprus)
P Kumarsiri (Ceylon)
S Mikunis (Palestine)
HA Naidoo (South Africa)
R Palme Dutt (Britain)
Gerald Peel (Australia)
Emile G Touma (Palestine)
Wu Tien-Wang (Malaya)