Warmonger Biden’s support for Gaza genocide fractures Democratic Party

By Chris Fry

When the hastily organized and shoestring budgeted “Listen to Michigan” campaign was established, organizers told the press that if the “Uncommitted” vote tally reached 10,000 to 15,000 votes in the February 27 Michigan Democratic Primary, then it was a “success.”

With 95 percent of the vote in, the Uncommitted tally has reached a whopping 100,100 votes, with most coming outside of the Arab-populated Dearborn area.

This result sends a clear message to Biden and the Democratic Party leadership: “Cut off the stream of bombs and cash to the Netanyahu genocidal war in Gaza and force a permanent ceasefire, or lose the election to Donald Trump!”

On February 2, the AP release an Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll showing a shift in public opinion about Israel’s war in Gaza and Biden’s massive military support for it, particularly among key elements of the Democratic Party:

The text of the article focuses on groups that are increasingly at odds with Biden and the leadership of the Democratic Party on Gaza:

The new poll’s findings include more worrying news for President Joe Biden when it comes to support from his own political party.

Fracture lines are growing in his Democratic base, with some key Democratic blocs that Biden will likely need if he’s going to win a second term unhappy with his handling of the conflict.

About 6 in 10 non-white Democrats disapprove of how Biden is approaching the conflict, while about half of white Democrats approve.

Notably, about 7 in 10 Democrats under 45 disapprove. That’s the opposite of the attitude of older Democrats, among whom nearly 6 in 10 approve.

Young activists have of course not only opined to pollsters about Biden’s open-handed support of Israel’s genocidal war in Gaza, but they have poured into the streets in massive numbers almost daily in militant demonstrations and rallies nationwide.

The empire strikes back

Leaders of the Democratic Party have launched a full-scale attack on not only these anti-war activists, but also on the few Congresspeople that oppose Biden’s unrestricted flow of bombs and cash for the Israeli war in Gaza.

Normally a political party will support the incumbent candidate in a House district, hoping to win back or retain a majority of seats.

But some of the elected opponents of Biden’s war policy have found well financed candidates vying for their seats in the upcoming Democratic primaries, including Representatives Corie Bush and Jamaal Bowman. Shortly after the war broke out, Michigan Representative Rashida Tlaib was censured in the House, with tacit support of the Democratic leadership, for defending the Palestinian people.

Somali-born Minnesota Congresswoman Ilhan Omar has faced constant attacks for her staunch support of the Palestinian people not only from Republicans, but also from her own party’s leaders, as Beth Miller from the Jewish Voice for Peace told the Guardian in February 2023 when Omar was removed from the Foreign Affairs Committee:

“Since she got to office she has been vocally opposed to Israeli occupation and speaking out for Palestinian human rights. And time and time again members of her own party have attacked her for it,” she said.

“The actions of the Democratic leadership, and the failure to not just defend her, but sometimes jump on attacks against her, has helped foster an environment that allowed this to happen.”

The powerful billionaire funded lobbying group, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC), which fuses Zionism with white Christian nationalism, has launched campaigns to oust any dissent from the U.S. continuing the flow of bombs and cash to the Netanyahu murderous regime. As Slate reported in November 2023:

Close watchers now expect AIPAC to spend at least $100 million in Democratic primaries, largely trained on eliminating incumbent Squad members from their seats. 

So far, House Democratic leadership has been quiet about all this. Minority Leader Hakeem Jeffries—who took more money from the Israel lobby in 2022 than from any other group and is featured prominently on the lobbying group’s website (alongside House Republican leadership)—hasn’t tried to dissuade the primarying of these progressive Democratic incumbents.

After its raucous summer convention, the National Political Committee of the Democratic Socialists of America (DSA), a caucus within the Democratic Party, put out a statement concluding with a clarion call to the left movement to join forces to stop Biden’s support for this genocidal war:

We reiterate our demand for an immediate ceasefire in Gaza and renew our commitment to the cessation of all hostilities against the Yemeni people. We echo DSA congressional representatives Rashida Tlaib and Cori Bush’s condemnations of the Biden administration’s illegal attack on Yemen and we call on our members and all other supporters of peace across the country to join us, along with our comrades in Progressive International and the global anti-war movement in elevating these demands.

In January, the ”old-guard” leadership responded to this anti-war stance by cutting funding to its own youth group, the YDSA, sparking outrage.

Senator Bernie Sanders, who has condemned Biden’s support of Netanyahu’s war, has nevertheless broken with his own mass organization, Our Revolution, when they pledged to not support Biden in his reelection campaign. Sanders has endorsed Biden.

The Democratic leadership is viciously attacking the “Ceasefire now!” protesters, of whom it repeatedly smears as “anti-Semitic” (Of course, Palestinians are in fact just as Semitic as Jewish people and many of these protests are led by Jewish people).  Former House speaker and “feminist icon” Nancy Pelosi managed to echo both J. Edgar Hoover and Richard Nixon when she told a reporter in January:

When asked to clarify whether she thinks pro-Palestinian activists were “Russian plants,” Pelosi replied: “Seeds or plants. I think some financing should be investigated. And I want to ask the FBI to investigate that.”

This pro-genocide posture by both bourgeois parties has filtered down to the state level.  Five states are set to radically increase their levels of penalties for blocking traffic during a protest.

New York is leading the charge, with a state legislator proposing a bill that would declare such protests “domestic terrorism”, which, by the way, they have never applied to the KKK:

One New York bill covers intentionally obstructing a public road, bridge, transportation facility or tunnel.

Sponsored by Assemblywoman Stacey Pheffer Amato, D-Queens, A8951 would increase the penalty from a Class A misdemeanor to a Class D felony.

The felony charge carries a maximum prison sentence of seven years.

The legislative pursuit follows recent protests that blocked traffic on the Brooklyn, Manhattan and Williamsburg bridges. Another protest blocked the Holland Tunnel.

Young labor stands up for Gaza

Several union leaders have passed resolutions calling for a ceasefire in Gaza and, like Shawn Fain, head of the United Auto Workers,, have spoken out against Biden’s military support of Netanyahu’s slaughter in Gaza at public rallies. Yet they pretty much all lined up to endorse Biden in his reelection campaign.

Dissatisfied with this, some workers are organizing their own campaigns to obstruct weapons production at union factories to prevent them from going to the Netanyahu regime. A group of workers formed the “UAW Labor for Palestine”, and is organizing for direct action:

UAW Labor for Palestine members have taken weapons shop organizing into our own hands, working to realize the ceasefire the UAW has been content to simply call for. A group of us have started going to a Colt factory in Connecticut, which holds a contract to produce guns that are likely to arm West Bank settlers.

These young workers are calling on their union leadership to make its opposition to Biden’s weapon’s flow into Israel real, not just an empty slogan:

If UAW leaders decided to, they could, tomorrow, form a national organizing campaign to educate and mobilize rank-and-file towards the UAW’s own ceasefire and just transition call. They could hold weapons shop town halls in every region; they could connect their small cadre of volunteer organizers—like us—to the people we are so keen to organize with; they could even send some of their staff to help with this work. 

In short, by acting on its strategic placement across the many weapons shops constituting this country’s perpetual war economy—from universities to factories to warehouses and ports—the UAW could lead the emerging left coalition for Palestine, which too often lacks the kind of concrete leverage unions hold. 

Black Pastors demand Biden force a ceasefire, joining Dearborn community’s warning to Biden’s reelection bid

The New York Times reported on January 28 that a large number of Black Pastors are echoing the principled stand that both Malcolm X and Martin Luther King took against the U.S. war in Vietnam:

More than 1,000 Black pastors representing hundreds of thousands of congregants nationwide have issued the demand. In sit-down meetings with White House officials, and through open letters and advertisements, ministers have made a moral case for President Biden and his administration to press Israel to stop its offensive operations in Gaza, which have killed thousands of civilians. They are also calling for the release of hostages held by Hamas and an end to Israel’s occupation of the West Bank.

The effort at persuasion also carries a political warning, detailed in interviews with a dozen Black faith leaders and their allies. Many of their parishioners, these pastors said, are so dismayed by the president’s posture toward the war that their support for his re-election bid could be imperiled.

In Dearborn Michigan, Lisa Elabed, younger sister of Michigan Congresswoman Rashida Tlaib, who led the Michigan ‘Vote Uncommitted” campaign under the banner “Listen to Michigan”, told Reuters that: “even calling for a ceasefire and ending military aid to Israel would not guarantee the votes of the 80% of Michigan Democrats who now back a ceasefire.”

“It means that we can start to have a conversation. It means that we can have some confidence that … we’re not on the back burner … and that our grievances and our rally cry to end the genocide are heard and taken seriously.”

This campaign has sent a strong signal to the Biden campaign and its ruling class patrons. Just because they oppose fascist and neo-Confederate Trump, the workers and oppressed communities are not going to fall in line with Biden’s genocidal proxy war in Gaza, even if it threatens the election outcome.

It also signals that it is time for progressives to seriously consider organizing our own mass party dedicated to serving our interests rather than Wall Street and the war machine, and not just selecting candidates for office, but also ready to lead the struggle into the workplace and the streets, particularly now that our class may now have to face Trump in power either by election or another coup.

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