Sunday, February 03, 2008


"The more dubious and uncertain an instrument violence has become in international relations, the more it has gained in reputation and appeal in domestic affairs, specifically in the matter of revolution."
~ Hannah Arendt.

More on Israel's assistance to Turkey, in oppressing the Kurdish people, from Murat Karayılan via KurdishInfo:

Israel is not only assisting the Turkish state’s war machine, which is used to annihilate the Kurdish guerrillas, through technological sharing, but is also actively taking part in surveillance and inspection. During the course of the last year Israel has played a significant role in the killing of many of our militants. In the coming month Israel’s defence minister will visit Turkey.

[ . . . ]

It is very strange that on the one side Iran is in a partnership with Turkey to kill our militants, while on the other side Israel, by sending its special personnel to work alongside the Turkish Army, is also actively taking part in the killing of our militants. This is a serious paradox. The pragmatism and interest driven actions here have distorted all truth. This is why we call on the Israeli state to withdraw from these actions. We do not want the Jewish people to be an enemy of the Kurds. If they continue to be an enemy of the Kurds then the Kurdish people do have things that they can do and we will discuss this. But first we will try diplomatic means. Israel needs to reconsider its position.

Mîr at Rastbêj has a new post which should help to sort out some of the other alliances Turkey is using against the Kurds:

In Northern Kurdistan there were two main parties that received the most of the votes. One was the AKP and the other was the DTP, the pro-Kurdish party. After the elections, the AKP neither kept its promises about the Kurdish cause nor attempted to do so. Furthermore, it stood in a position to mediate or reconcile the other political parties in order to approve a parliamentary consensus for cross-border operations against the PKK. With the exception of the DTP, the AKP succeeded in receiving overwhelming approval for military operations from the other political parties. With this move, the AKP aimed both to marginalize the DTP in the parliament and forcefully silence the PKK.

Today, the DTP is under a severe political lynching campaign orchestrated primarily by the AKP, with the other parties willingly joining the campaign. Unlike the Turkish parties, the DTP was the only party in the parliament that opposed the use of military force in general, and cross-border operations in particular. Rather, it suggested achievable democratic solutions for solving the Kurdish Question. However, since the solution of Kurdish Question would end the dominance of the Turkish generals and the parties that benefit the status quo, the DTP labeled as the “separatist party” which praises terrorism. The DTP has subsequently been sued for immediate closure.

Then there's Erdoğan in bed with Büyükanıt:

When one looks back on the presidential elections, where Gul had been nominated by the AKP, one can clearly see the arm wrestling between the AKP and the Turkish generals for dominance in Turkish politics. The Turkish military never wanted Gul as president because it feared that the AKP would legislate laws to curb its powers. Gul, as president, would approve them immediately. However, something very different happened. Gul got elected without any serious opposition from the Turkish military. A question, then, becomes obvious: what made the Turkish generals accept Gul's presidency? The answer lies in the private meeting between Erdogan and the chairman of the Turkish General Staff ,Yasar Buyukanit, in Dolmabahce Palace, a short time before the July 2007 elections. Apparently Erdogan and Buyukanit came to a deal about Gul's presidency, in which the AKP would touch none of Turkish generals' privileges and would support their policies to the end. The AKP also used the monopoly of media manipulation to cover the generals’ black operations against the Kurds, such as Semdinli.

[ . . . ]

In short, the AKP and the Turkish military (TSK) agreed on classic annihilation policies, dictated by the generals, towards not only the PKK but also all the Kurdish people in general.

Finally, there's the spiritual leader of AKP:

The Kurds are historically conservative people and strictly adhere to their religion. It is this fact that religious people, primarily the shekhs and imams, had a distinctive position among the Kurds.

Today, knowing this fact, the AKP is using religious people, sects, associations, and schools to brainwash the Kurds and to cut their emotional and political affiliation with the PKK. Fethullah Gulen’s movement, which has strong ties to the AKP, is the most dangerous group due to its secret agenda. It is everywhere in North Kurdistan.

“Recently the Turkish based Zaman newspaper reported that Fethullah Gulen had filled planes with Turkey’s top businessmen and flown them to southeastern Turkey so they could go door to door to distribute meat and other foods to the poor in key cities.... Fethullah Gulen, founder of an Islamic educational movement and spiritual leader of tens of thousands of devotees around the world, has made a social revolution in Turkey. He is now one of the most influential people in Turkey. His followers will act upon whatever he says, doing what he wills… Today southeastern Turkey is in flames; the Kurdish people one more time are being labeled as terrorists. What kind of bridge of love and isles of peace is Gulen building in southeastern Turkey? Did Gulen ever dare to stand up against the unjust military presence involved in burning houses, kidnapping Kurds, raping women, and depriving everyone of the most important right of speaking their own language? Did he ever mention in public that the Turkish government is wrong and that Erdogan’s policy is oppressive?

Axin Arbili argues that "Support for Cruel Regimes Breeds Terrorism" at The Conservative Voice. There are bones of contention there for everyone to pick at: Saudi Arabia, Iran, Iraq, and Turkey:

The West knows that the Mullah regime is not popular. It is rejected by most Persians, it is hated by the Kurds, Arabs, Azeris, who suffer from state oppression and terror. There are many dissidents and resistance movements, the strongest of which is the Kurdish PJAK. As with the Kurdish freedom fighters in Turkey, the PJAK were forced to take up arms to protect the Kurdish community against Teheran’s aggression and human rights abuses. These groups have the people’s backing, they want the end of the Mullah dictatorship; they want freedom and democracy for Iran. A change is possible from inside, without foreign military force. Only if carried out by the Iranian population themselves, the change and achievement would be seen legitimate and lasting. Although the West talks a lot about regime change, it does not give any open and substantial support for these groups. Although it talks about freedom and democracy all the time, it denies indigenous peoples, with their own distinct languages and ancestral homelands, their right for self-determination. Millions of people continue to be suppressed by hostile majorities in the Middle East.

[ . . . ]

The existence of the pseudo-democratic, pseudo-secular state of Turkey, too, is based on this understanding and cooperation. The Turkish case is an open and empirical textbook of the murderous double-standards and hypocrisy of the West. It is the only Islamic country in the NATO and the only Islamic candidate for membership in the EU. While negotiating membership, its military has been occupying the territory of an EU-member, Cyprus. It receives billions of dollars in economic and military aid from the West. That money and military hardware have been used to maintain occupation of North Kurdistan, oppress and terrorize the Kurdish population, launch raids against South Kurdistan, to crush the Kurdish freedom movement. The Turks are supported by the USA, EU, and UN. They call the slaughter of a defenceless people as "fight against terrorism". Thus Western governments and their media outlets dehumanize and demonize the struggle of 25 million people for freedom. The Turkish tyranny and fascism, a continuation of Ottoman imperialism, is rewarded while the natural, legitimate and honourable resistance of the Kurds is declared a crime. Goebbels would have envied such a masterful global deception, such a perversion of truth and justice.

But Western realpolitik is not bothered about what is right or wrong, it is concerned with securing resources and maintaining control. The present deal with the Turks is about Iran. The West has given green light to the Turkish army to attack the Kurdish resistance in South Kurdistan. As a further treat, America might have offered Ankara some rights over Kurdish oil fields. A full-scale invasion in spring is now becoming a "legal" possibility for the Turks and would not come as a surprise. For the fascist Turks, any form of free, self-governing and successful Kurdish entity, which is South Kurdistan, is unacceptable.

Memorandum: In the spring, let no one send me any panicked emails, or leave any panicked comments, about the fact that Turkey has launched a land invasion of South Kurdistan. You have been warned.

From the monkey-see-monkey-do department, International Socialist Review has a little something on that Little USA-Little Israel known as the Republic of Turkey:

In an eerie replay of the U.S. rhetoric leading up to the invasion of Iraq in 2003, the Turkish government has insisted that it needs no other nation’s permission—including that of the U.S.—to wage a full-scale attack on the Kurdish rebels. Like Russia’s scorched-earth campaign against Chechnya or Israel’s war on the Palestinians, Turkey’s escalation against the PKK is a clear example of how Washington’s “war on terror” has given nations across the world a political logic to justify inflicting state terror against populations that hold long-standing and legitimate political grievances.

Given this logic, we can make the comparison between Israel's treatment of Gaza and Turkey's treatment of North Kurdistan. Of course, the majority of those who cry for Gaza in Western media have never bothered to cry for North Kurdistan.

Turkey-as-ally doesn't seem to be working, which should surprise no one. However, it's always interesting to see a wrench thrown into the works:

A U.S. warning to scrutinize the activities of Turkey-based Iranian Bank Mellat has not been welcomed by Ankara.

Bank Mellat does not feature in the United Nation's list of individuals and institutions that assist Tehran's controversial nuclear program. "What binds Turkey are the resolutions of the U.N. and not U.S. presidential decrees or congress decisions," a Turkish diplomat told the Turkish Daily News.

[ . . . ]

. . . Stating that foreign banks operate according to the regulations set by the current Banking Law and are controlled periodically, the official underlined that the conditions of suspending one bank's operations are clear. "Obviously we cannot move upon a third party's requests," he said.

The Bush administration issued directives last year cutting off three Iranian banks from the U.S. financial system: Bank Melli, Iran's largest, Bank Saderat and Bank Mellat. Bank Mellat is the only one of those with branches in Turkey, operating in the country since 1981 with three branches in Istanbul, Ankara and İzmir.

Ha! May the Turkey-Iran (and Israel) alliance give Michael Rubin a heart attack.

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