Erdogan – Turkey’s Bloody Tyrant & President Who Regime Is Responsible for Bomb in Ankara Killing 100 people – Has Declared War on the Kurds & PKK
Turkish State Must Be Held to Account
State must be held to account
I tried to translate into English the thoughts I had immediately after the
October 10 massacre, the lyrics of an old rock tune that lingered in the depths
of my mind came back to me – it may be something “you never gonna forget”, but
“you ain’t seen nothing yet”.
the long, bloody history of Turkey we have not seen such an atrocious
slaughter. We will remember this one along with the Armenian genocide, the
expulsion of the Greek Orthodox population, the various Alevi massacres, the
vile acts of fascist junta regimes, and the never-ending atrocities committed
against Kurds. However, we must also keep in mind that 10/10 was just another
cobble on the long road paved with blood-soaked stepping stones to crush the
popular opposition. What the near future holds is, alas, further atrocities.
HDP supporters cheer election victory last June
the aftermath, the international news agencies, ruling class commentators, the
Turkish government and its well-oiled propaganda machine – that is, expert
public-opinion-benders – claimed that the massacre was an Islamic State
operation aimed at destabilising the national integrity of Turkey. ‘IS declares
war on Turkey’ was the headline of choice for the multitude of
government-backed newspapers and websites.
HDP supporters jubilant after election victory
claim, in a logic warped according to the different segments of their audience,
mentioned what has been happening in Syria and Iraq, the mass exodus of
refugees, their hostile reception in the European Union and the involvement of
Turkey in anti-IS attacks conducted by the US airforce, as well as the Russian
involvement in the Syrian civil war.
After devastation caused by Ankara bomb attack
even circulated conspiracy theories that suggested an uncanny cooperation
between the Kurdish Workers Party (PKK) and IS sleeper-cells, which were
activated unawares under the command and control of a ‘superior mind’ – you may
read this to mean intelligence agencies if you are left-inclined, or world
Jewish organisations if you are Islamist-inclined!
assertion that it was an IS attack is a false claim attempting to soften the
impact in the international arena by sheltering under the umbrella of anti-IS
sentiment. In the domestic arena, that false claim served to shift the blame –
away from the bloody hands of Turkish state agencies.
Bombs and elections
June 5, a bomber placed two explosive devices in a public square in Diyarbakır
and detonated those devices during an election rally called by the pro-Kurdish
People’s Democratic Party (HDP). He killed four people, and wounded more than
Mass demonstration mourning victims of bomb attack
suspect was arrested on June 8. He was a young man of Kurdish Alevi origin, who
had been known to the authorities since 2011. He had gone to Syria to fight in
the ranks of IS, and his family had lodged a missing person report with the
police informing them of his likely whereabouts. Since October 2014 he had been
on the list of wanted IS terrorists.
US Military – fighting for ‘peace’ and mayhem
the check on the IDs of hotel guests against lists of wanted people – a regular
police duty in Turkey – had identified him as an absconder from military
service. He was arrested at his hotel room, and the paperwork to register him
for the military was completed. Afterwards he was duly released – the police
failed to pick up on the fact that he was a wanted terrorist!
atrocity committed in Diyarbakır was the culmination of the terror campaign
against the HDP before the June 7 elections. In that terror campaign almost
every one of the party’s election offices had been attacked – fired on, bombed,
broken into or set alight; many HDP campaign vehicles were attacked and several
campaign workers were beaten, and even killed. The terror campaign was part of
a strategy aimed at keeping the HDP vote under the electoral threshold for
parliamentary representation. Most of these crimes remained unresolved.
Members of socialist party mourning victims
the HDP overcame the electoral threshold and the ruling Justice and Development
Party (AKP) of president Recep Tayyip Erdoğan failed to get enough seats in the
parliament to form a government. The planned route for the constitutional
amendment leading to a monarchical presidency and a docile parliament came to
nothing. The aftermath of the AKP’s election disappointment was brutal
vengeance. A full-scale air war on Kurds was launched.
on July 20, a suicide bomber walked into the gathering of a group of young
activists who were staying in Suruç before crossing the Syrian border to
provide assistance to Kobanê. The explosion killed 32 people and maimed more
than 100. The bomber was a friend of the Diyarbakır assailant – they had joined
IS at the same time and trained together. And he has a brother who has also
joined IS. They had all been recruited by the same person and formed a group in
Adıyaman, which the police believed had about 20 members.
suicide bomber and his brother had also been reported to the police by their
family and they were on the list of wanted IS terrorists. Like others in the
group, he came and went between Turkey and Syria with impunity, despite the
fact that the police had been drawing up a list of 16 potential suicide bombers
from among the group.
Suruç bomb was identical to the one used in Diyarbakır – except it had been
packed with steel balls to enhance its murderous effect. Two days later two
policemen were shot at point-blank while they were asleep in their apartment
and a group affiliated to the PKK claimed responsibility in what was quite a
confusing manner. However, the ball was rolling: the government declared the
peace process was dead and buried, and a new anti-terror war was unleashed on
Turkish airforce commenced a full-scale bombing campaign on both Iraqi and
Turkish territory. To obtain a veil of legitimacy for this assault, the
government declared “war” on IS, and in the initial raid Turkish jets bombed
two – yes, only two – IS targets (which had been abandoned before the raid).
Since than no other IS targets have been hit.
government placated US and international public opinion by allowing US access
to İncirlik air base, from where Syrian targets could be more easily hit. And
it stated that it would refrain from bombing any Kurdish targets in Syria, as
the Kurds were considered to be the only reliable ally of the US.
raids conducted by the Turkish airforce employed almost all available planes
with ground-attack capability. The targets included bases of the PKK in Iraq,
as well as forward operating sites of guerrillas within Turkey.
extent and result of the bombing campaign remain untold except for military
communiqués. In a recent statement the airforce command stated that more than
2,000 smart bombs had been used on almost 1,500 targets. According to its
estimates, more than 1,300 people had been killed during those raids.
massive air campaign was accompanied with a ground offensive in rural areas, as
well as in the cities. Three- to eight-day-long curfews were declared in
different Kurdish towns. The people and guerrillas resisted the army and police
onslaught, and savage battles were fought. Hundreds of innocent bystanders,
including small children, were killed. Mobile units of the special police force
had travelled from town to town to carry out those operations. Their brutality
matched that of the dirty war of early 1990s. The HDP worked hard to restore
the ceasefire, but in large cities any attempts to organise peace
demonstrations were brutally stopped.
the parliament formed after the election was rendered ineffective by the AKP
and the constitutional time limit to form a government passed following futile
negotiations over an unachievable constitution. A new election was called for
line with the existing constitution, a government was formed which included
ex-ministers appointed by the AKP. These ‘neutral’ ministers occupied critical
posts, such as internal affairs and the justice ministry. And the onslaught on
the Kurds went on unabated.
the AKP’s strategy to achieve a parliamentary majority in the coming election,
the war on the Kurds did not seem to be providing the intended outcome. The
Erdoğan regime sought to disrupt the poll in Kurdish districts by declaring
some localities unsafe for election, and tried to move the ballot boxes to
date it has failed to persuade even the docile judiciary working in the
electoral commission to comply. But the intention was clear: to make it
impossible for the election to be held in Kurdistan by stepping up state
violence. However, preventing Kurds from voting in Kurdistan was never going to
be enough to achieve electoral success for the AKP. The number of disaffected
people likely to vote for opposition parties in the large cities was ever
increasing. Polls indicated stronger support for the HDP. Therefore, other
measures were put into practice, such as arresting members of the HDP and other
left groups on terrorism charges, as well as applying a blanket censorship
against the opposition media.
HDP and left forces coagulating around it in the large cities has to be
stopped. The war on the Kurds has been extended into working class districts of
the cities in the guise of anti-terror raids. However, to keep them dispersed
and disoriented during the final month before the election was a top priority.
Hence the 10/10 atrocity.
AKP clique formed around Erdoğan and his immediate circle and family in the
interim government has been able to keep their control over the army, state
bureaucracy and judiciary, so long as they maintain a semblance of
nationalist cause, in the form of an anti-Kurdish war, has provided the
backdrop to cementing support among the Kemalists, the officer corps, and top
bureaucracy, while the considerable anti-IS sentiment is being exploited. At
the same time there is an attempt to garner Islamist support through the ploy,
inherited from the cold war, to paint a picture of the godless Russian bear
once more meddling in the Middle East and threatening us from our southern
borders. It is hoped that the pillars of Sunni Islam, such as Saudi Arabia and
Qatar, can be kept onside following the nuclear agreement between Iran and the
US, along with the threat of cooperation between Iran and Russia.
each of these options is full of dangers, which means that in the final weeks
before the election – if it takes place – and the immediate aftermath bode ill
for Turkey and the region.
the PKK’s unilateral ceasefire, Turkish attacks are continuing. Border
skirmishes with the Syrian army are possible, if it quickly occupies the ground
previously lost along the border with Turkey. An ‘unforeseen’ clash between
Syrian or Russian and Turkish planes may take us to the brink of war – a war
which might trigger substantial involvement from other powers. All of this
points to the postponement of the November 1 election until next year.
dangerous scenarios are now the order of the day. In order to achieve its aim
of a new constitution, with a powerful president, the AKP needs to present
itself as the custodian of national unity and may resort to war – against an
external or internal enemy – so as to win a parliamentary majority.
ex-Mafioso supporters did not speak in vain about impending rivers of blood
when they addressed rallies before the June election. They are determined to
maintain their power at any cost.