Socialist Worker

International round up: Bigots’ fury at Arab party kingmaker

by Nick Clark
Issue No. 2749

Current Israeli president Binyamin Netanyahu

Current Israeli president Binyamin Netanyahu

Israeli politicians were up in arms at the idea that an Arab party might enter government following elections last week.

Israel’s two largest parties, Likud and Blue and White, competed to cobble together a coalition ahead of a deadline on Wednesday of this week.

The elections—the fourth in two years—ended without either commanding a clear majority of support in Israel’s parliament, the Knesset.

Both considered doing a deal with the Arab party Ra’am, whose four elected politicians would be enough to give either side a majority.

But Israeli politicians reacted with horror and outrage.

Arabs living in Israel are Palestinians who escaped the campaign of ethnic cleansing against them when the state was created in 1948.

Israel’s racist laws separating Jews from Arabs mean that they lack equal rights and face discrimination and poverty.

Ra’am leader Mansour Abbas said he would join any government—even one led by racist warmonger Binyamin Netanyahu—to represent Arabs in Israel.

Yet Israeli politicians said the involving parties who want equal rights for Arabs would undermine the whole state of Israel.

One right wing party leader, Betzalel Smotrich, said involving Ra’am in government would cause “irreparable damage to the Jewish state”.

Riots in North push for sectarian conflict

Loyalist areas of Northern Ireland saw rioting last week.

Petrol bombs and bricks were thrown at police officers in Loyalist areas in Newtownabbey and Carrickfergus.

On Friday, there were violent scenes in the Sandy Row area of Belfast as well. In Derry for several nights Loyalist areas of the Waterside part of the city saw riots.

Some 27 police officers were injured on Friday night across Belfast and Derry.

Several people were charged with rioting—some as young as 13 and 14. The bigots of the Democratic Unionist Party (DUP) are losing support in the polls. They have moved to raise the border in an attempt to rally Unionist backing. And they have been looking to push sectarianism.

Tension was ramped up further last week following a decision not to prosecute 24 Sinn Fein politicians for attending a Republican funeral during Covid-19 restrictions. This led to the main Unionist parties demanding the resignation of Northern Ireland top cop, chief constable Simon Byrne.

Simon Basketter

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