Friday, March 07, 2008


"The Turkish army could not capture any of our territory, could not get one of our bases, our weapons or even a scrap of nylon. The Turkish army didn't have any chance to rest. When they attacked, we hit them. When they made camp, we hit them. Even when they pulled back, we hit them."
~ HPG Headquarters Commander Bahoz Erdal.

Talabanî's message to Atatürk.

Iraq President Celal Talabanî wrote the following in Anıtkabir's memorial guestbook:

As the chief of the Iraqi delegates, it is a great honor to be in front of Turkey's great leader Mustafa Kemal Paşa Atatürk.

He is the founder of the Turkish Republic and a new life in Turkey.

We greatly respect him in Iraq. We respect the role that he played at the time when Turkey was under foreign interventions, and the role that he played in the recognition of a new Iraq, which used to be a part of the Ottoman Empire.

We pray to Allah for Atatürk to be in paradise.

Celal Talabanî
Iraqi President

Translation from Arabic to Turkish made by Şirvan al Vaili, Iraqi National Security Minister.

Photos of the event:

DTP was not present at any of the festivities. Selahattin Demirtaş summed it up well:

The DTP’s Group Leader Selahattin Demirtas said that Talabani’s visit to Ankara after the ground incursion was dishonorable.

Demirtas said “This visit is all about the discussion of interests and winnings as a result of turning a blind eye to the ground incursion. And these benefits are Talabani’s benefits, not the Kurdish people’s. therefore, we believe that for Talabani to visit Turkey in such a period is dishonorable for the Kurds.

Former DEP parliamentarian and political prisoner, Leyla Zana, had earlier disapproved of a visit at this time.

In the meantime, the Ankara regime continues to press to lift the immunity of a number of parliamentarians, most of whom are members of DTP:

45 reports requesting the lifting of the immunity of 27 MPs have been sent to the Office of the Speaker of Parliament by the Prime Ministerial Office. Most of the MPs concerned are from the pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party (DTP).

[ . . . ]

. . . [S]even are about DTP MP Sirri Sakik from Mus in eastern Turkey, and four about DTP MP Nezir Karabas from Bitlis, also in eastern Turkey. Another report concerns Sakik and Karabas together.

[ . . . ]

. . . there were reports prepared on many DTP MPs.

They are from Istanbul, as well as cities in the east and southeast of Turkey: Istanbul MP Sebahat Tuncel, Ahmet Türk and Emine Ayna from Mardin, Serafettin Halis from Tunceli, Fatma Kurtalan and Özdal Ücer from Van, Osman Özcelik from Siirt, Selahattin Demirtas, Gültan Kisanak and Aysel Tugluk from Diyarbakir, Nuri Yaman from Mus, Ibrahim Binici from Sanliurfa, and Sevahir Bayindir from Sirnak.

Including Sakik and Karabas, this adds up to 15 MPs.

This manuever would effectively destroy the DTP parliamentary group, which has been the goal of the Islamist-Paşa alliance since 22 July 2007.

In Van, a Kurdish protester died today of wounds he received from Turkish police on Wednesday:

A Kurdish demonstrator wounded in clashes with police in eastern Turkey has died of his injuries, local officials said Friday.

Mehmet Deniz, a farmer, died in a hospital in the town of Ercis on Thursday.

He was injured on Wednesday, when a festival to celebrate International Women's Day turned into a demonstration in support of the rebel Kurdistan Workers' Party, or PKK.

During the confrontation, police fired shots in the air and Kurdish protesters threw stones, the Anatolia news agency reported.

The cause of the protester's injuries was disputed. Protesters said he was beaten by police. According to other accounts, he was struck in the head by a rock thrown during the melee.

It was the second death of a demonstrator in recent clashes with pro-Kurdish protesters. On Feb. 16, a youth died of injuries after hundreds of Kurdish protesters battled police in southeastern Turkey during annual demonstrations to demand the release of PKK leader Abdullah Ocalan, who was captured and imprisoned nine years ago

Hürriyet noted DTP's protest of the death:

DTP protested the death of Deniz, claiming he was killed by police under custody. "Our citizen Mehmet Deniz, 58, was beaten to death by a group of police officers with batons and planks after the March 8 festival held in Van's Ercis town on Wednesday", DTP said in a statement. "We are facing a government which has a tradition of aggressively surpassing every legitimate demand for more rights", it added.

I have no doubt that this case will be referred to IHD for an investigation.

HPG has released photos of the nine şehîds guerrillas from the Zap battles of the recent Turkish invasion of South Kurdistan. From Özgür Gündem:

Hevallo has video showing the burial of the Zap şehîds, as well as a post on Southern Kurds who intend to join PKK in the event of more Turkish aggression.

The WaPo had a couple of people in the mountains during the recent Turkish invasion. Here's something of what they have to report:

The thrust of the ground battle targeted the Zap Valley, a crucial region in the western portion of the guerrillas' territory, home to their headquarters, training camps, underground storage rooms, burial plots and fighters manning their Russian-made antiaircraft Dushka machine-gun positions on the snowy peaks. Erdal, the high-strung, fast-talking guerrilla commander, abandoned his medical school studies in Damascus, Syria, two decades ago to join the PKK. Since then, he has fixated on fighting Turkey.

"It's not random that they are attacking this area," he said. "The army that they brought is enough to capture an area like Zap. But when you use a very big army, it's difficult to organize, and your movements will be slow."

In the end, Erdal said, his guerrillas drove Turkey back down from the mountains after killing more than 120 of its soldiers; Turkey claimed to have lost 24. The disparity was larger on the guerrilla side: Erdal and several others insisted that just 10 of their own were killed, while Turkey put the number at more than 230.

One of the corpses lashed to the branches on the day of the funeral belonged to Ayhan Eruh. During preparations for the funeral, the names of the dead were written on scraps of white paper tied to their chests. This was a scene Roshat Sarhat, a 30-year-old guerrilla who once was a journalist in Istanbul, had no interest in seeing. He stayed in an abandoned stone hut on a hillside far from the service. The bare single room was silent but for the crackle of his radio and the buzz of a surveillance drone high overhead.

"He was my best friend," Sarhat said. Eruh had died on the first day of the battle.

Read the rest and make sure to check out the photo gallery.


Anonymous said...

I didn't quite understand. Was it Talabani's visit to Mustafa Kemal's gravepit that made the DTP upset or his timing? I hope both...If it was going to take Talabani's honour of M.K. for the rest of the Northern Kurds to shed their false praise of the modern tyrant, I wish he had visited it sooner. This news was very refreshing :) Dest Xwesh.

This Talabani is almost a comical figure. I still remember when he got overjoyed at seeing Ahmedinejad and said that they were one soul split into two bodies...I still get a chuckle out of it even years later...


Anonymous said...

Miz - Sort of reminds me of the Wizard of Oz (please revisit photo #3 in this array). It's one thing to revere & respect a Founding Father; quite another to go through a 100 year old Orwellian Charade. We all know all the shopworn slogans, I will not attempt to nauseate or bore with their repeating. What's REALLY needed in Ankara is the equivelant of an intervention for a drug addict. While I don't see this happening anytime soon, who could have predicted the rapid collapse of the Soviets and their bevy of lies in the early or even mid-80s??

Mizgîn said...

Nistiman, I believe it was initially the timing of this visit that rubbed DTP the wrong way. Certainly, begging to visit Anitkabir does not help that situation at all. Today, Igdir DTP parliamentarian Pervin Buldan also criticized Talabani's visit, saying that if Talabani had the slightest bit of Kurdish pride, he would not cooperate with the Turkish state.

Remember that the invitation for this visit was extended on 21 February, by Gul on the phone, the day that Turkey's recent invasion began. Basically, now that we are bombing you, please visit, you little cow turd.

However, I suspect that there is at least one other thing that's got DTP upset. In December they were planning to go to the South to act as human shields in the areas being bombed by Turkey. I suspect that this fell through because they didn't get permission from the KRG. The KRG also blocked non-Kurdish NGOs who requested to do the same thing. According to those sources, KRG officials hinted that the NGO personnel in question should look to their government as the source of the problem--their government being the US government.

Now, if they don't have the balls to call the shots on something like this in their own so-called autonomous region, well, so much for "autonomy". Of course, the KRG also blocked the region to journalists so that it has been difficult to get information about the bombings to the outside world.

This is exactly what Turkey does with Turkish-occupied Kurdistan. If not for PKK sources or Firat News, we'd know virtually nothing about recent events.

It's not only Talabani's visit that has begun to change how Northern Kurds look at the situation, but the invasion has everyone pissed off, too. Let's hope everyone remembers their shouts of "Katil Erdogan" and "Munafik Erdogan". So far it's enough to get Erdogan to cancel an upcoming visit to Amed.

And it sounds like Talabani is to Ahmadinejad as Bus is to Putin--remember the whole "looking into his eyes and seeing his soul" crap?

Anonymous, Talabani's visit was a "working" visit, not an "official" visit. The Ankara regime will not have a Kurd come to Ankara as an equal by extending an "official" visit invitation. So, this whole thing started out as a slap in the face and Talabani was either too stupid or too servile for it to make any difference. Because it wasn't an "official" visit, no trip to Anitkabir was in the works. It took the intervention of Iraqi Kurdish "officials" to beg for this little bit of sightseeing.

And there are plenty of governments in the world who could create an "intervention" but they haven't done anything yet and I'm not holding my breath.

Anonymous said...

Wise words only get you in trouble (especially when they go against the barbaric Turks)...

Mizgîn said...

Hehehe . . . yeah, Anonymous . . . I guess Boot-licker Petraeus is up for promotion.

I really wasn't holding my breath on anything Fallon might have done. Just because someone is right doesn't mean anyone is going to listen.

Anonymous said...

...yeah, neither was I, but so much for democracy right?

Gordon Taylor said...

anonymous said:
"It's one thing to revere & respect a Founding Father; quite another to go through a 100 year old Orwellian Charade...What's REALLY needed in Ankara is the equivalent of an intervention for a drug addict."

Wow. That is a perfect bullseye. Thanks.

Serhat said...

I got a question that I hope you can answer mizgîn. Did Talabani support the PKK during the 1990s or is that just turkish state propaganda?