Last week I was walking home with a friend, talking, for some reason I said black power, referring to the US black power movement in the 1970s, my friend responded, the black power movement is reversed Racism, it only remind of this young white girl asking Malcolm X about how she -as a white- can help, and his response was “Nothing”, just because she is white, all of those nationalist race based movements were doomed, they were simply fighting the wrong enemy.
my friend continued, look at the African Americans right now; they fought based on race and color, they fought the white man as a white man, they fought against a color; and today they became what they fought in the 60’s and 70’s, they became part of the US colonialism, either supporting or fighting in the wars of Afghanistan and Iraq. They failed when they became part of an oppressing machine.
At first, I got really angry; I seriously felt it was insulting for a man I personally love and appreciate, “Malcolm X”. Yet her words made me think about how nationalist movement can sometimes lead to such disastrous outcomes, i.e. the oppressed becoming an oppressor whenever this suited their interest as a community or a nation.
If we applied this idea to Arabs in general and Palestinian in particular, we will see where we are heading too. Nationalism in Palestine is pretty high comparing to other countries and nations, as people who either live under occupation; under a continuous threat of being ethnically cleansed(48 Palestinian included) or in the refugee camps, nationalism was the cord that reattaches a nation that was ripped apart.
Yet those nationalistic feelings were manipulated since the very beginning by the Palestinian Bourgeoisie -who unlike the usual colonized nations’ Bourgeoisie did not cooperate with the colonizing power, as they were replaced with the Zionist Bourgeoisie- they appointed themselves the task as the protector of the people and the land. Chanting progressive slogans, and practicing a noble form of political struggle, i.e. the Armed Resistance.
At the same time they didn’t hesitate to eliminate any movement rising outside the frame they build. I wasn’t really surprised when I learned about the assassination of Palestinian unionists in the early 1930’s by the grand Mufti loyalists, the unionists being: Michele Metri the head of the Arab Labor Association in Jaffa, and Sami Taha the head of Haifa branch of the same association .
The Palestinian in the 1930’s saw the British colonialism, and the Jewish immigrants as their real enemy, As they were the one who want to destroy the Arab Palestinians. however the Palestinians failed to see the most dangerous enemy, i.e. The Palestinian Bourgeoisie who only followed their interests and would delay the popular movements from growing in Palestine until the Nakaba in 1948.
After the Nakba in 1948, the Palestinian Bourgeoisie lost their powers over the people -losing everything somehow made people equal-, which gave the people the opportunity to organize themselves in political formations, mainly part of the already existing political parties in the hosting countries such as the communist party and the Arab Nationalist. It took the Palestinians some time before they were able to form their own parties such as Fatah, FPLP, DFLP and the PLO.
94 years had passed since the British occupation of Palestine, 94 years had passed since Balfour’s Declaration, and we still see only the obvious, we hate the settlers, but we make business deals with companies investing in settlements, we blame the IDF for mass killings, yet we fail to see who benefited from those killings. Who destroyed Iraq so they can rebuild it, who blew up Afghanistan just to gain its natural resources, and no, I am not talking about gas and oil, I am talking about those who resigned contracts under the flag of rebuilding a war stroke country. Bomb them then rebuild their country, then bomb them again,…etc; a new business plan made by the capitalists.
Our true enemy is not the one who holds a gun in your face, it’s not the settler, or the IDF soldier, or even the NYC riot police in wall street, our enemies are those who benefit from the people suffering everywhere, he can be Arab, Muslim, Jew, Christian, Hindu, Black, White….etc he can be anything, but one thing for sure, he is a 1%.