Israeli communists warned that the need to oppose a new fascism was urgent as they held a Victory Day celebration in the Red Army Forest near Jerusalem on Saturday. Communist Party of Israel (CPI) general secretary Adel Amer addressed the event ahead of further huge protests in Tel Aviv against the far-right government’s planned attacks on the judiciary.
Red Army soldiers raising the red flag of the Soviet Union atop the Reichstag building in Berlin, May 2, 1945 (Photo: Zo Haderech)
“We in Hadash and the CPI will continue to fight for democracy and continue to join the Block against Occupation and mass protests against the right-wing government,” Amer said, “to fight for true democracy — democracy without occupation, democracy with national and civil rights for Palestinians.”
Former Hadash MK Dov Khenin, a leading CPI member, said Victory Day, commemorating the triumph of the Allies over Nazi Germany, “is not just a looking back but a look at the present in Israel, when fascism is already in power and threatens the rest of the democratic space. The movement against this fascism is different from other protest movements — it is led by liberals and conservatives, and we are happy they are there, but it means the resistance to fascism is not doing what’s necessary to unite the Arab population and to involve it.”
Speakers denounced distortions of history and the removal of monuments to the Red Army across eastern Europe. “Since the 1950s we have been celebrating Victory Day over Nazi Germany in the Red Army Forest in the Jerusalem mountains,” a party statement said, adding that hundreds of Jews and Arabs attended and held a mass picnic afterwards.