The liberation of Gaza and our industrial concentration policy

BY:Wadi’h Halabi| April 29, 2024
The liberation of Gaza and our industrial concentration policy


This piece is a contribution to the Pre-Convention Discussion for our 32nd National Convention. During Pre-Convention Discussion, all aspects of the party’s program, strategy, and tactics are up for consideration and debate. The ideas presented here are those of the author or authors alone, and do not necessarily reflect the positions of the Communist Party USA, its membership, or their elected leadership bodies. — Editors

Following Lenin and William Z. Foster, Gus Hall, the long-time CPUSA chair, correctly insisted on a party-wide policy of industrial concentration: the critical importance of building the party in industry and developing industrial workers as members-leaders. Marxism understands industrial workers will play an outsized role in humanity’s transition from capitalism to socialism.

How can an initiative to liberate Gaza advance our industrial concentration policy?

Consider: On February 12, the United Auto Workers Arab caucus called on president Shawn Fain and the UAW as a whole to “take action to translate the UAW’s ceasefire declaration to practical interruption of the weapons which our UAW siblings are making [and] sending” to the Israeli state. This means a ceasefire enforced by working class means. The Arab caucus includes workers in the big Ford Dearborn plant and other UAW-organized plants.

By supporting the caucus’s call, which has been largely ignored, we can also advance our industrial concentration policy. Linking with the caucus would start us a step up from trade-union consciousness, because the caucus’s call is political. Trade-union consciousness, as Gus pointed out, can easily slip into opportunism.

But wait, there is more: the caucus builds on an October 16, 2023 appeal by the Palestinian General Federation of Trade Unions (PGFTU) to unions worldwide “[to] refuse to build weapons [and] to transport weapons” to the Israeli state. Unfortunately it has also been largely ignored. But this too is a major opening to advance Communist industrial concentration policy – internationally.

In fact, on March 27, 2024, the World Federation of Trade Unions (WFTU) issued an important Solidarity Declaration on the occasion of Palestinian Land Day that included a call for “blocking arms” to the Israeli state.

The WFTU represents 105 million workers in unions affiliated mainly with CPs in Solidnet. This includes unions where CPs are in power, such as Vietnam and Cuba, as well as unions with CPs in capitalist countries, such as in Portugal, India, South Africa and Brazil.

Solidnet groups about 120 ‘official’ CPs – including the CPUSA. Solidnet members’ central reference point is the theory, organization and practice that made possible the victory of the Russian and subsequent socialist revolutions.

The Manifesto of the Communist Party explained that only two qualities distinguish the Party’s members from those of other working-class parties. First, we “point out and bring to the front the common interests of the proletariat, independently of all nationalities. [Second, we] always and everywhere represent the interests of the movement as a whole.”

The Manifesto speaks of only one Party worldwide – it never refers to Communist “parties,” and the Communist International referred to its representations in various countries as “sections.” Study points to the disintegration of the Party into parties as one of the decisive factors in both the collapse of the Soviet Union and other major defeats. The disunity has cost humanity.

Gaza is almost unique in that it can successfully unite CPs and unions worldwide in action. Marx once predicted that the whip of reaction would urge the revolution on. And what a whip the US and its agents have wielded in Gaza! By championing a working-class initiative to liberate Gaza, we can advance Communist industrial concentration not only in the US but worldwide.

After 200 days, we can see what asking the bosses to stop firing has achieved. The calls by the PGFTU, the UAW Arab Caucus and the WFTU point the way to a Gaza ceasefire by working class means. That involves internationally-coordinated mass mobilizations backed by labor actions to block the production and/or transport of arms – what the PGFTU requested 191 days ago. A good if isolated example was set by the West Coast longshore union. Check this report of a 2021 action with mass support after a previous attack on Gaza.

The momentum and unity from a victorious struggle to liberate Gaza can be applied to other necessary tasks, tasks that cannot be mobilized around today. This includes ending the war in Ukraine by Leninist means, liberating Palestine as a whole, liberating Africa as a whole, liberating humanity as a whole from the scourge of capitalism in utter decay.


Possibly because of decades of defeats for Palestine, I have long studied the material basis for revolutionary optimism. Capitalism in decay makes revolution more necessary but at the same time more difficult. The odds change in our favor when we look at the global picture, the global class forces.

The material basis for optimism today lies in past accomplishments of the working class. They include ever-advancing Marxism; particular methods of organizing and educating; our experience in struggles, both from successful revolutions but also by drawing the necessary lessons from defeats; and, not least, the world Communist movement and unions worldwide, especially the unions formed or transformed by our world movement.

Imperialism is too isolated, too weak to defeat international Communist and labor unity backed by mass actions to stop the flow of arms to Gaza. A labor initiative to liberate Gaza will have overwhelming support from workers, oppressed and youth worldwide. Students’ struggles have been remarkable. Alone they cannot accomplish much. But coordinated with labor-led mass actions such as those called for by the UAW caucus, the PGFTU and WFTU, they can be mighty.

Mobilizing past accomplishments to liberate Gaza today will be victorious. In the process, we will advance industrial concentration – and human liberation.


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