Around 60 people attended a public forum in Sydney on February 9 to commemorate the 33rd anniversary of the re-establishment of the Palestinian People's Party (PPP). The party was retitled from its original name of Palestinian Communist Party, which was founded 96 years ago.
Shamikh Badra outlined the history of the PPP, from its early days in 1920s Palestine, to its re-founding in 1982. He explained the role of the PPP after it joined the Palestinian Liberation Organisation (PLO) in 1987 and fought for militant policies within the Palestinian liberation movement.
Other speakers at the forum included Hannah Middleton from the Communist Party of Australia; Professor Stuart Rees from the Peace and Conflict Studies Centre; former ABC TV head and now academic Professor Peter Manning; Latin American activist speaking for Venezuelan ambassador Nelson Davila, Raul Bassi.
Peter Boyle, representing the Socialist Alliance, presented the "warmest comradely greetings from the Socialist Alliance of Australia to the PPP, which is celebrating the 33rd anniversary of its re-establishment today.
"The national liberation struggle of the Palestinian people is a critical part of the global struggle for freedom and justice, and the Palestinian People's Party has always been an important component of this struggle, playing a key role in organising the working class and participating vigorously in the struggle against Israeli oppression and occupation," Boyle said.
"The racist and discriminatory regime which Israel implements in the Palestinian land it occupies is [increasingly now] seen for what it truly is: another version of apartheid. This shift in global consciousness is an important turning of the tide, but it is also one paid for with the blood of many Palestinian martyrs. Today we should also pay solemn tribute to these martyrs, to the many Palestinian liberation fighters who have made the ultimate sacrifice.
"Their sacrifice has not been in vain.
"The shift of world opinion towards support for the liberation of Palestine is part of a broader shift in global consciousness. It is part of the growing global rejection of neoliberalism, racism, war and imperialism. This powerful rejection has brought advances of the left around the world, from Latin America (Venezuela, Bolivia and Ecuador more recently) to Greece just last month....
"The future liberation of the Palestinian people will hence be a profound step in the liberation of the other nationally oppressed peoples, but also for the working class all around the world. ," Boyle said.