"The thing worse than rebellion is the thing that causes rebellion." ~ Frederick Douglas.
Since everyone is on a boycott kick lately, I figured, what the hell? I might as well start a boycott too, and I found the perfect target: Australia.
Australia has formally joined the long list of hypocrites who support Turkey's genocide against the Kurdish people, as can be read here, at Kurdish Media, or from the original source at the Sydney Morning Herald
Australian Kurds are furious after the Federal Government pronounced the Kurdistan Workers Party a terrorist group, even though it was allowing sympathisers to become refugees as recently as last year.
The party, which has been running a long campaign for autonomy for Turkey's Kurdish minority, was listed as a proscribed terrorist group in mid-December, making it a criminal offence to recruit, train, fund or have "other forms of association" with the group. A person found to have links with the party or 16 related entities faces a jail term of up to 25 years.
This is nonsense of course, because there is not a single Bakurî who does not have "links" to the PKK. Everyone has someone or knows someone who, even if they weren't gerîlas, were working politically for the rights of Bakurî Kurds. According to Turkey, it merely suffices to be a Bakurî to be a "terrorist." What the Australian government is really doing is closing the door to all Bakurî who seek asylum.
We see the same thing in the US, with the legal battles that Kurds such as Ibrahim Parlak and Kani Xulam are engaged in. The only reason they face deportation is because they are Bakurî, Kurds from Turkey.
There are about 15,000 people of Kurdish origin in Australia, and roughly half have fled Turkey. Almost all have sympathy for the party, according to the Kurdish leader Mehmet Kahraman.
"We view it as a liberation organisation. We are against violence but we support the cause or support it emotionally," he told the Herald yesterday.
"Most of the asylum seekers to Australia and Europe came because they were persecuted for working for the Kurdish people, the Kurdish cause."
Exactly. Kurds don't leave Turkish-occupied Kurdistan because they want to leave. They leave because they have to leave. They leave because they have no rights. They leave because Turkey has destroyed the region, the villages, the livelihoods, the culture. They leave because Turkey is a racist state built on a foundation of fascism. The only organization to stand up to Turkish fascism, has been the PKK, and that is why PKK has the sympathy of the people. That is why the people still go to the mountains.
The group had shifted its emphasis from creating a homeland to the protection of Kurdish culture, Mr Kahraman said. "The PKK is against targeting civilians. The PKK has accepted the Geneva Convention," he said.
Yeah, that happened in 1995, in a statement to the UN. Does anyone see Hamas doing something like this? But Hamas is dedicated to the total destruction of the Israeli state and Turkey has a relationship with Hamas. Hamas leaders just visited Ankara. So the fact is that Turkey is behind Hamas' ideology of the total destruction of Israel, which should come as no surprise to anyone, since Erdogan and his party (AKP) are a pack of Islamists. All of that may change abruptly in August, and I would advise Mr. Erdogan to start thinking about what happened to Ozal. Or maybe even Erbakan.
Meanwhile, PKK has been a party to the Geneva Conventions for eleven years.
Vicky Sentas, a spokeswoman for the Federation of Community Legal Centres, said the Refugee Review Tribunal approved one Kurdish person's asylum claim last year because of links to the Kurdistan Workers Party.
"One year ago we considered Turkish Kurds as refugees. And now we consider them open to the charge of terrorism. It's absurd," Ms Sentas said.
"It's a bitter irony that Australia considers the Kurds in Iraq to be their close allies, while over the border in Turkey they are terrorists."
How familiar does that sound? Does "Good Kurd/Bad Kurd" ring a bell? But Australia isn't too committed to Bashurî Kurds either, since Australia isn't too committed to the Iraq Adventure. They only have 460 troops there, guarding some Japanese engineers who will be leaving soon. It does appear that Australia may make the huge sacrifice, and keep those 460 troops in Iraq, guarding, oh, I don't know, girl scouts during their annual cookie sales, or something. But hey! Anything for the war effort, right?
The Attorney-General, Philip Ruddock, pronounced the Kurdistan Workers Party a terrorist group just a week after the visit of the Turkish Prime Minister, Recep Erdogan, to Australia.
What a coincidence! Only a week after a visit by the man who said he would "oppose Kurdish autonomy even if it was in Argentina." And then people scratch their heads and wonder why no one in Amed (Turkish name = Diyarbakir) paid any attention to Erdogan's drivel about Kurds last August.
However, the Australian Security Intelligence Organisation has pointed to 14 incidents of violent attacks, some against civilians since July 2003.
"ASIO assesses the PKK is continuing to prepare, plan and foster the commission of acts involving threats to human life and serious damage to property," it said.
Fourteen incidents of violent attacks where? I didn't realize the PKK was operative in Australia. Until now, it has focused all of its attention on Turkish-occupied Kurdistan. Inquiring minds want to know exactly where and when these alleged attacks took place. After all, the Turkish state goes around blowing up bookstores in Kurdish cities and then blames it on PKK, even though it is Turkish police who are caught in the act by the local population.
Mr Ruddock told the Herald the listing of the party as a terrorist group had no link to the visit of Mr Erdogan. He said the US, the European Union and other countries had also outlawed the party.
"The judgement at an earlier point in time was that it didn't warrant proscription. The judgement at this point of time is that it does," Mr Ruddock said.
Ah, right. I know I believe you Mr. Ruddock.
But let me ask you, Mr. Ruddock, and all those who think PKK is a "terrorist" organization, What would you do if you were detained by security forces simply because you are Australian (American, European, whatever)? You are tortured while in detention because that is the normal course of things. I mean, you are an Australian, right? That alone makes you guilty. It is your crime.
You are awakened by police in the middle of the night in your cell and you are made to crouch for two hours in a barrel of water. After that, you are beaten with a truncheon. Or maybe some electrical shocks are applied to your penis. Or maybe you get falaka instead, with an order of human excrement on the side, which you have to eat.
Then a relative comes to the police station to protest that you have done nothing wrong and you should be released. Just to teach your relative a lesson, the police break both of his arms and his pelvis. Or maybe they would bring him in with you, and threaten to rape or torture him while you watch. Maybe they really do it.
Do you have children, Mr. Ruddock? Great! The police can bring them in and force them to watch your torture. If you have children, you must have a wife. Your wife will open great vistas of possibilities for the police. How about if they rape her in the cell next to you so that you can listen?
Or maybe all this will happen to you and your neighbors in your village, after which your village is destroyed and you are left homeless. You own nothing, Mr. Ruddock. Nothing. Whatever will you do now? What will you do with your family?
You think I'm making all this up, don't you? OOPS! think again.
Remember, Mr. Ruddock, if you fight back against the terrorist regime that did all this to you, to your family, to your relatives, to your home, you will be the terrorist. Any of your relatives who fight back will be terrorists. Your entire people will be terrorists. No fair fighting back politically. You have no political rights, no political recourse. There is only one way for you to fight back. With weapons.
I hate to say it, Mr. Ruddock, but I think that you and your people (as well as Americans and Europeans and others) need to undergo a practical exercise in racism coupled with torture, just so you can get an idea of why it is that Kurds fight and why it is that they sometimes have to flee to seek asylum in foreign lands, because obviously, you are incapable of putting yourself in a pair of Kurdish shoes.
There do appear to be a handful of people in Australia who don't need the racism or the torture to understand, but they are probably few and far between.
The rest of you just have to learn the hard way.
In the meantime, you can take all your Australian products and shove them where a Turkish police truncheon customarily goes.