Archive for Ocalan

WOMEN IN TURKISH POLITICS

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , on October 29, 2009 by Mizgîn
“We take action both for the woman raped in Istanbul or the woman stoned to death for adultery in Iran. But this is not enough. For this is not simply women’s problem, the source of this politics is the male mentality.”
~ Sebahat Tuncel.

Hürriyet’s English news is moaning over the lack of women politicians in Turkey:

The lack of political representation for Turkish women is the heaviest factor dragging on Turkey’s quest for gender equality, according to a global index that puts the country in 129th place out of 134.

The World Economic Forum’s Global Gender Gap Index 2009 comes as a disappointment, with Turkey falling two places compared to last year’s ranking.

For a country whose NGOs, women’s groups and government are constantly launching initiatives in an attempt to close the gap, the poor ranking shows that Turkey lags desperately behind due to its lack of political empowerment and participation of women in Parliament.

The article quotes an AKP female parliamentarian, Özlem Türköne, and some other non-governmental Turkish women, but it completely ignores the one party with the largest number of women politicians for its size in Turkey: the DTP.

In the local elections of 29 March, DTP’s women mayors took 14 cities (See: http://www.firatnews.com/index.php?rupel=nuce&nuceID=5302 ) and it has 8 women parliamentarians: Ayla Akad Ata, Aysel Tuğluk, Gülten Kışanak, Pervin Buldan, Emine Ayna, Sevahir Bayındır, Fatma Kurtulan, and Sebahat Tuncel. Why did the Horrible Hürriyet ignore these women politicians? Was it because they’re Kurds?

What does this say about the differences between Kurdish men and Turkish men, if so many Kurdish women are able to run for public office and and succeed? Moreover, what does this say about the influence of the PKK’s emphasis on gender equality on the Kurdish people?

Part of the reason for the success of Kurdish women politicians in Turkey is the fact that the DTP has a quota for women:

Gabriela Cretu (PES, RO) asked which Turkish political parties supported women’s rights most. In reply, Yesim Arat pointed to the Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP), which has a quota for women and thus more elected women politicians than in “developed” regions of Turkey.

The idea of a quota for all Turkish parties was not addressed at all by the Horrible Hürriyet, even though the DTP parliamentarians have made proposals to impose a 40% quota for women on political parties in Turkey.

Of course the situation of Kurdish women in Turkey is still difficult. Many families still forbid girls from going to school, which is an unacceptable situation, as is the reality of “honor” suicides or “honor” murder. Living situations in the villages continues to be extremely difficult for women. Still, the Kurdish women politicians are proof that good education for girls can make a huge difference for all Kurdish women.

And I’m willing to bet that all of our women politicians had parents that supported and, perhaps, sacrificed for their educations. Not only are these women the models for all Kurdish girls, but their parents are the models for all Kurdish parents.

In the meantime, a Turkish judge has convicted Aysel Tuğluk for “spread[ing] the propaganda of a terrorist organization” for a speech she gave in 2006, in which she praised the signature campaign for Öcalan. Tuğluk’s lawyer will be preparing an appeal.

WHO IS SUPPORTING THE PKK’S PEACE GROUPS?

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on October 22, 2009 by Mizgîn
“The possibilities are numerous once we decide to act and not react.”
~ George Bernard Shaw.

The Federation of [Turkish] Martyrs’ Families isn’t happy that there may be a political solution to the Kurdish situation:

[President of the Federation of Martyrs’ Families Hamit] Köse compared the reception of the PKK envoys to a funeral that made the martyrs turn in their graves. He said they were received with open arms, “without regretting the terror and the murders.”

Ayşe Çelik, the mother of a martyr, questioned the fairness of the amnesty. “Bring back our children like you are bringing them [PKK members] back from the mountains,” she said. “You can’t, because our children are buried in the ground.”

Aside from the fact that these ghouls would prefer to see more people on both sides die, let’s consider a few things here. What is their real beef?

A conservative number of dead from the Dirty War in The Southeast is 40,000. Let’s go along with the claim that 6,000 of those dead were TSK and, for the sake of argument, let’s say that those 6,000 were all ethnic Turks–although we know they all weren’t. That means that 34,000 of the dead in our conservative estimate were Kurds.

Again, let’s review the math: 6,000 TSK “are buried in the ground”, to quote Ayşe Çelik and 34,000 Kurds “are buried in the ground”.

Who has suffered more?

Maybe the Federation of Martyrs’ Families is upset about the forcible displacement of Turkish citizens? How many Turkish citizens were forcibly displaced by TSK in Western Turkey? None. How many Turkish citizens were forcibly displace by TSK in The Southeast? At least 2,000,000.

Who has suffered more?

On the other hand, it could be that the Federation of Martyrs’ Families has a problem with economic disparities? Western Turkey has an unemployment rate of 25 – 30%. What’s the rate in The Southeast? Sixty to seventy percent.

Who is suffering more? Who longs for peace more?

Of course, it’s only fair to mention that not all martyrs’ families associations are opposed to the idea of the Kurdish initiative or the PKK’s peace groups sent from Kandil, Maxmur, or the one that will soon arrive from Europe.

The comparison here of the reactions of these organizations to the events of the last few days seems to be consistent with the initial reactions of the population. On the day the peace groups arrived from Kandil and Maxmur, Turkish TV news channels sought the reaction of the “man” on the street. It appeared that about half were supportive of the arrival of the peace groups while the other half opposed. I have seen no numbers on the matter so, at this point, these are my observations of what has gone on in Turkish media.

It would also appear that those who are braying the most against the arrival of the peace groups are the two “opposition” party jackasses–Baykal and Bahçeli.

What may be more significant, however, are two other things I’ve noticed about Turkish media in this last week:

1. At this point, the paşas have been absolutely silent on the matter. There has not even been so much as a hint of an e-coup; there have been no mysterious postings of opposition statements on the website of the Turkish general staff.

2. According to Milliyet, Emre Taner’s position as the head of MİT has been extended again, this time until May 2010.

For those having difficulty reading between the lines, here’s something from June 2009:

Avni Özgürel of daily Radikal writes that Gül’s announcement is based on a report by Emre Taner, the Director of the Turkish Intelligence Service (MIT), which proposes an administrative reform for partial devolution of power to the regional/local authorities, finding an appropriate way of accommodating the guerrillas coming down from the mountains, a formula for the PKK leadership’s accommodation and an amendment in the conditions of imprisonment of Abdullah Öcalan. This proposal, Özgürel asserts, has been agreed upon in principle by all the participants of the National Security Council (MGK), including, most remarkably, the military’s high command.

If this attempt at a solution actually goes through this time, given the silence of the paşas and the extension of Taner’s tenure as MİT chief, the jackasses are screwed. But, seeing is believing, as they say, so let us see what will happen.

WELCOMING THE PEACE AND DEMOCRACY GROUP IN SILOPI

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , on October 20, 2009 by Mizgîn
“Some of us, on the other hand, opted to take active part in the Kurdish Freedom Struggle and remained in the mountains for years under immensely difficult conditions in order to protect an honourable identity. This was in the face of an otherwise unsolvable Kurdish question, with inequalities in the living conditions of Kurds and injustices lived by the Kurds. This became our struggle for our existence – for a democratic, equal and freedom-based solution.”
~ Letter of the Peace and Democracy Group from Maxmur and Kandil.

Here are some more photos from Silopi showing the welcome that the Kurdish people give their returning sons and daughters:


Additional photos can be found at http://www.firatnews.com/gallery/index.php?rupel=galeri&gid=2035

The Kurdish people love their guerrillas!

Hevallo has posted the letter that the Peace and Democracy Group has brought for the Turkish government, so go take a look at that.

In the meantime, stand by . . .

FIREWORKS IN SILOPI

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on October 19, 2009 by Mizgîn
“If the government takes one step, PKK will take ten steps.”
~ Ahmet Türk.

There were fireworks in Silopi on Monday night as thousands of people crowded around the Habur border crossing to stand watch over the processing of the Kandil and Maxmur peace delegations sent to Turkey by the PKK. The eight members of the Kandil delegation are guerrillas. They are: Hamiyet Dinçer of Başkale, Elif Uludağ of Pazarcık/Maraş, Hüseyin İpek of Ömerli/Mardin, M. Şerif Gençdağ of Siverek, Mustafa Ayhan, Vilayet Yakut of Diyarbakır, Lütfü Taş of Kığı/Bingöl, and Gülbahar Çiçekçi of Kığı /Bingöl.

So far, from Ozgür Gündem:

The Processing of the Peace Groups Are Being Done at the Border Garrison

The processing of 34 members of the Peace and Democracy Groups who came to the Habur border by [order of] the Kurdish people’s leader Abdullah Öcalan is being done in the garrison at the border. After crossing into Turkey, they have been taken to the Habur Border Jandarma Garrison. While they are being processed, they are expected to give statements to prosecutors.

Just now, 24 Haber reported that 29 of the 34 members of the Maxmur and Kandil groups have been cleared to leave freely and we are awaiting a judgement on the remaining 5 members. Four prosecutors and one judge were sent to the Habur Border Jandarma Garrison to clear the members of the groups to enter Turkey and thirty-four lawyers arrived to represent the groups’ members.

Earlier, on a replay of CNN Türk’s Beş N Bir K, Cuneyt Özdemir read the nine demands of PKK and his guest commented favorably on them. Özdemir then remarked that it was amazing that these people had just arrived from the mountains and that, if everything went smoothly, tomorrow they’d present their demands in the TBMM. Özdemir’s guest–whose name I never got due to a frantic surfing through channels–replied that if the guerrillas go to the TBMM tomorrow to present their nine points, it means that PKK is serious about a democratic solution and an end to the conflict.

At this moment, the morning talking heads on Turkish media are reading the newspapers . . .

Here’s a rough breakdown of PKK’s demands:

1. Öcalan’s road map for the peaceful and democratic solution of the Kurdish Question must be given to the addressees.

2. Ending the military and political operations and opening up a peaceful, democratic, and political solution to the Kurdish question.

3. As a part of Turkey’s democratic nation, living under free and equal conditions on the basis of our Kurdish people’s identity, assured by the constitution.

4. Using our Kurdish mother tongue everywhere and freely; Improving it and living our geography, culture, and historical values in our mother tongue.

5. Naming, educating, and raising our children in Kurdish.

6. As Kurdish people, living our culture, art, and literature freely, improving them and protecting them.

7. Improving our democratic social organization with our identity, doing politics and expressing ourselves freely.

8. Living in Kurdistan’s villages, towns, and cities away from the pressures of village guards, police, and “Special Teams”; Living there with sufficient possibilities {i.e. infrastructure] and in security.

9. Having a new civil democratic constitution for the democratization of Turkey.

Below are some photos of the Kandil group, from http://www.firatnews.com/gallery/index.php?rupel=galeri&gid=2026




Now ask yourselves: Do you see Hamas taking steps like this, or Al-Qaeda, or the Taliban? Did you see the LTTE take steps like this? And then you should ask yourselves: Who, then, are the “terrorists”?

Make no mistake: This has nothing to do with Article 221 of the Turkish Penal Code–the Repentance Law. There is no one here who will claim the Repentance Law because there’s nothing to repent. In fact, these guerrillas have rejected Article 221 for themselves.

Nor let anyone make the mistake of assuming that the Kandil Peace and Democracy Group has made this trip from a position of weakness. Some 400 new guerrillas have joined PKK in the last three months. There is no weakness of arms or of morale here.

It’s time for the Ankara regime to shit or get off the pot on doing its part to create a just and honorable solution to this 25-year-old conflict.

At this moment, CNN Türk is reporting that five members of the Kandil group may be arrested and they are trying to decide if the judge at the Habur Border Jandarma Garrison can make any decision on those arrests or if these five guerrillas will have to be taken to Diyarbakır.

Stay tuned.

MURAT KARAYILAN AND ÖCALAN’S ROAD MAP

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , on September 16, 2009 by Mizgîn
“I have to state that those who couldn’t weaken us during the most difficult years [for us], of 1999-2004, can’t ever weaken us today.”
~ Murat Karayılan.

There’s an excerpted interview with Murat Karayılan featured at Zerkesorg. The most pressing question at this time is what PKK will do about the ceasefire at the end of Ramadan. Here’s what Murat Arkadaş has to say:

We extended the conflict-avoidance phase until the end of Ramadan festivities for two reasons. The first reason is the respect we have for Ramadan. The second reason is that we expect the Turkish state to give us the roadmap during this time. Hiding the roadmap and not giving it [to us] will hurt the discussion environment. The process will not move forward without the roadmap. Let me put it clearly: it will be very problematic for us to extend the conflict-avoidance phase. Of course we are discussing the events from every angle. It is obvious that the current phase will face serious difficulties and problems unless the roadmap reaches us by some means. We too have sensitivities, we have a base, we have different organizations, forces. They [the state] say there is the army, the army will do this and that. We have an army too. There are organizations and matters we have to consider. We have to consider all these phenomena. Therefore, such approaches are not right. Our people make demonstrations for this and demand. Our people’s expectation, our movement’s and democratic organizations’ expectation is that the state gives the roadmap right away. Because this is necessary for the continuation of the process. Not giving the roadmap, despite these, will mean that the state doesn’t want a solution. Then it is up to them whether to give it or not.

Murat Arkadaş on “brotherhood”:

You [the Turkish state] reject Kurdish identity and oppress Kurds and then talk about brotherhood. What kind of brotherhood is this? My language, culture, history, and names are forbidden, I can’t own my identity but you say you are brothers. You say Kurds are our brothers but forbid everything belonging to them. This is slavery, slavery by force. We are in the 21st century and the Kurdish people have been enlightened with Apocu culture will not accept this [slavery]. Forcing slavery under the name of brotherhood and doing this by spilling blood with police batons and soldiers’ weapons has nothing to do with brotherhood. In the current era this is not possible either. MHP and CHP need to understand this.

Murat Arkadaş has a message for the Turkish state and the international community, warning everyone that no one should “miscalculate”:

It’s being said that the international conditions are against us. No; that may be your opinion and it may seem that way to you. There is also the side that’s visible to us. In this respect, we have reserves and potential to defend ourselves and advance our cause for years. Nobody should make miscalculations on this and approach correctly. We don’t talk big. But we are not a simple force either. We are a force that successfully stood up, renewed itself, got stronger, and strengthened its belief and decisiveness despite the attacks against us, supported internationally. In this respect we are in a position in which we have established high morale and motivation, increased belief and decisiveness, and strengthened tenacity for success. I have to state that those who couldn’t weaken us during the most difficult years [for us], of 1999-2004, can’t ever weaken us today. There is no way for a movement that didn’t weaken during that term to weaken today.

Let me add that there are those who have called for a “Sri Lankan Model” to be applied to the Kurdish situation. I would just remind all those with such ideas that the mountains of Kurdistan are not Sri Lanka’s beaches.

Likewise there are those who complain about the deaths of Turkish soldiers and characterize the recent clashes as “PKK attacks”. Those who are responsible for these deaths are the ones who send soldiers on operations; the guerrillas retain the right to their own self-defense. Such self-defense is hardly consistent with the characterization of “attacks”. On the contrary, it is TSK which carries out “attacks” and we know this because we know when communications into the Kurdish regions are completely shut down. When communications are cut, it means TSK is conducting major “attacks”, as it was doing during the first weekend in September. It was these TSK “attacks” that resulted in the needless deaths of Turkish soldiers. It is TSK which is trying to “block the peace process.”

And while we’re on the subject of the death of Turkish soldiers, let’s look at an insightful analysis from Children of the Sun:

Turkish Ministry of Defence has published the statistics of dead security forces. Oral Çalışlar recently wrote an article about it. Of course, the data wasn’t published widely in Turkish media. The data presents which cities the dead security forces are from. It turns out that in terms of highest losses, six of the top ten cities are Kurdish. The security forces from Kurdish cities (Kurds) are sent to the front lines to fight the PKK. The fascist regime’s policy of pitting Kurds against Kurds continues regardless. A Kurd is worthless to the state even if he sides with the state.

Clearly it is in Kurdish interests to see an end to this conflict and that is why DTP and PKK are working for a solution. It’s too bad there is no one from the state who is willing to work for the same solution. The fact remains that military-industrial complex and the Deep State continue to use Kurdish blood to lubricate the gears of The System.

And so we go from “Kurdish Initiative” to “Democratic Initiative” to “National Unity Initiative”. Words, words, words with no more substance to them than air.

MORE STATE TERROR IN SOUTHEAST TURKEY

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , , , , on September 14, 2009 by Mizgîn
“Unless we abandon elements which resemble a police state, we can’t meet the demands of being a modern society.”
~ Ahmet Necdet Sezer.

This just in from a comrade in Amed (Diyarbakır):

AMED — In what both normal people and political activists here are considering a serious blow to the fragile hopes generated by the government’s already highly tentative and uncertain “democratic opening”, on the morning of 11 September 17 senior members of the DTP were detained in dawn raids on private homes across the southeast, local media here reported.

The arrests were reportedly carried out by the ‘anti-terror’ units of the local police forces on the orders of the offices of public prosecutors. Most of the detainees were brought to the main police station in Diyarbakır, including those who were apprehended in other parts of the southeast. Those detained included chairman of Diyarbakır city council and former mayor of Lice Şeymus Bayhan, former mayor of Bağlar Yurdusev Özsökmenler, former Bismil mayor Şükran Aydın, former Şırnak mayor Ahmet Ertak, and other leading officials currently serving in southeastern municipalities, the DTP, and social movements connected to the DTP.

The operation, which is being called an extension of the one which was initated against the DTP on April 14 following their success in the 29 March local elections, generated immediate resistance from the party and social movements in solidarity with them. Hundreds of supporters attended a press conference at 11:30 in the morning on September 11, and thousands a protest march on the afternoon of 12 September.

The 12 September rally began in front of the DTP’s major building in Diyarbakır and continued with a march to Koşuyolu park. The crowd chanted slogans in favor of the PKK and it’s jailed leader, Abdullah Öcalan. The speeches made by senior DTP politicians were characteristically sober, defiant, and optimistic.

Addressing the assembly, chairperson of the DTP in Diyarbakır and former mayor of Yenişehir Fırat Anlı asserted that neither the leadership nor the grassroots of the DTP would be intimidated by the state’s crackdown, pointing out that they had passed through that phase long ago. He characterized the arrests as an assault on the political will of the Kurdish people.

Member of Parliament from Mardin and DTP co-chairperson Emine Ayna expressed regret that, although tens of thousands of people (under DTP leadership) had rallied behind the slogan ”yes to an honorable peace” and pledged to support to the government’s ‘democratic opening’ only ten days previously, the party was answered with a fresh wave of repression. She said the attack was a ‘provocation’ carried out in unity by the state ‘as a whole’, apparently rejecting the common idea that there is a split between the military, the police and the rest of the state establishment in their approach to the Kurdish freedom movement.

Ending her speech, Ayna pointed out that Kurdish people had continuously changed the Turkish Republic since it was founded in 1923. She reminded people that there was once a struggle only to affirm the existence of the Kurds as a people, never mind a comprehensive democratization of the country. She said that if it’s possible to speak of Kurdish language courses or Kurdology institutes at universities, it’s because the Kurdish people created them through their struggles. She then called for a normalization of the political situation in Turkey and vowed continued resistance until the Kurdish people are victorious.

Indeed, the DTP has pledged to remain mobilized against the operations until all their comrades are released, including those detained on 11 September and on and after 14 April. Meanwhile, it seems that almost all the optimism created by the ‘democratic opening’ has dissipated, as both civil and military operations against the Kurdish freedom movement appear to be escalating.

Photos from the rally:






So much for the “Kurdish Initiative,” or the “Democratic Initiative,” or the “National Unity Initiative,” or whatever the hell they’re calling it today.

We want our roadmap!

PEACE DAY IN THE CAPITAL OF KURDISTAN

Posted in Uncategorized with tags , , , , , on September 1, 2009 by Mizgîn
“If someone tried to assimilate you for years, if your language was forbidden, if the names of your hometown were changed, what would do you but revolt.”
~ Osman Baydemir.
Özgür Gündem has hundreds of photos from Peace Day in Kurdistan’s capital, starting here. Below is a sampling:

“We want our road map.”
Aysel Tuğluk, pressing the flesh.
Ahmet Türk, addressing the crowds.
Mini-Apocular.

Emine Ayna, greeting the crowds with victory.
Osman Baydemir, speaking to his city.
Kawa’s fire.
Serok Apo and Aram Tigran.
“Free Leadership, Free Identity, Democratic Autonomy.”
“PKK for solution.”