Imagine if Lebanon destroyed every bridge in Israel, blew up the international airport, blockaded the ports, severed every arterial road, ordered people to leave their homes and then bombed them to pieces when they did... Do you think any Western leader would utter the words “Lebanon has a right to defend itself”?
This is the basic truth that every news bulletin seems designed to obscure. It is the reality that is enraging hundreds of millions of people across the globe as Israel launches its barbaric action against the people of Lebanon and the Gaza Strip.
And it is not just Israel, of course. Barely commented on in the British media is the fact that it was Britain and the US that prevented the G8 summit from calling for a ceasefire.
Tony Blair and his ministers were again instrumental on Monday in preventing the European Union from issuing a condemnation of Israel’s aggression. No one should be in any doubt why - George Bush and Blair want Israel to continue its assault on Lebanon.
The US state, with the craven support of Blair’s government, is giving Israel a green light. This is not because of some imagined stranglehold on Middle East policy exercised by a supposedly omnipotent Zionist lobby.
It is because Israel is doing what it has always done - serving the interests of US imperial power in the Middle East.
Israel is cloaking its attack in neo-con rhetoric about an axis of evil linking Iran and Syria to Hizbollah in Lebanon. Its claims are dutifully repeated by a media which never once stops to point out that the Israeli missiles and bombs raining down on Lebanon were supplied by the US.
There is a link with Syria and Iran, but it is not the lie that Syrian and Iranian troops are in Lebanon. It is that the US has made no secret that it is preparing for an attack upon Iran, which has signed a mutual defence pact with Syria.
Israel’s attack on Lebanon serves the purpose of a pre-emptive strike on Hizbollah, which would respond militantly to any US attack upon Iran.
There is an axis of aggression. It links Tel Aviv and Washington, and Blair has placed London on its midpoint. But it is at that midpoint that those of us who live in Britain must strike a blow.
By taking to the streets in mass numbers this weekend and at the mobilisation in Manchester in September, we can speed the day when Britain is detached from Bush’s “war on terror”. It is our responsibility to make a breakthrough here in the fight against imperialist subjugation.