The Communist Movement in the Arab World

By Tareq Y. Ismael | Go to book overview
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Appendix 4

“Work Among the Peasants” and “The Struggle Against Zionism”*

“WORK AMONG THE PEASANTS”

The agrarian question in Palestine

1 The August uprising of 1929 focused the attention of the imperialist government, as well as that of all parties in the country, on the Arab fellah. The agrarian question rose before the English imperialists and their allies (the Zionists) in all its dimensions. A number of very important works appeared, explaining the situation of the fellah and the agrarian movement in the country: the Johnson-Crobie and Simpson and Vilkansky 1 investigation committees.

Once again, by concrete political example, the principle appeared to be correct that “the national question is mainly the peasant question” (Lenin), and that a victorious revolution in the Arab countries, at this stage, depends, in the first place, on the correct presentation by the Communist Party (the party of the working class, which is still young in these countries) of the peasant question and on the correct policy of the party with regard to the basic masses of the peasantry.

2 What constitutes the Arab peasantry in Palestine? Simpson gives the following figures, as of 1930:

Urban population

340,962

Non-urban

605,029

Bedouins (among the above)

103,331

If we add to this the fact that there are 115,100 Jews in the cities, and that a considerable part of the urban Arab population is directly or indirectly connected with the countryside, it will appear that about 80 percent of the

* Theses approved by the Secretariat of the Central Committee of the Communist Party of Palestine. Published in Arabic, in Ila al-Aman (Forward), the organ of the Communist Party of Palestine, 1931; in the Hebrew language, in a separate brochure, in 1931.

-147-

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