Wednesday, December 09, 2009


"In 1993, a ceasefire was declared by the Kurdish opposition. The EU tried to pressure Turkey to respond constructively to it. Instead, the Turkish government, with crucial US support, escalated the war. That led to years of further atrocities and destruction."
~ Noam Chomsky.

Here's an opinion piece on the current situation in Turkey from Radikal's Oral Çalışlar:

There won't be any solution without Turkey's Kurds

With the recent days' events (DTP's closure case, the reaction after Öcalan was transferred to a smaller cell, and, finally, the seven troops who were killed in an ambush in Tokat), the Kurdish "initiative" is in a sharp curve.

I prefer to call it a sharp curve rather than an impasse. The conditions for the solution to the Kurdish question are available despite all the barriers.

Most of Turkish society's preference, despite everything, still favors a solution. I can see most of the Kurds also want a solution. I think the ones who don't want a solution among Turks are not the majority. It is not possible that death and war be the desire of the majority.

Of course, whatever the conditions are, it is a must that the "initiative" be based on a right strategy and the process must be managed very well based on this strategy. From the days that the first steps were taken for the Kurdish "initiative" some mistakes have been made. If these mistakes can be identified and lessons can be learned from previous mistakes, the "Kurdish initiative" can be on track again.

When I listen to the sides carefully, I can reason the events went on as follows:

The government--maybe it would be better to call it the state--got into the feeling that it could squeeze PKK and "would be able to convince" it by reaching an agreement with Northern Iraq's Kurdistan administrators and with US support to take PKK down from the mountains and empty the Maxmur camp.

The government conceived that the international conjuncture was available. It made some alliances with Iran, Syria, the Kurdistan administration in Northern Iraq, the Iraq government and the US for a solution in the region and to disarm PKK. The government thought these alliances would be sufficient. It presupposed the problem would be solved with these alliances.

DTP states that the government did not inform it about the road map and deliberately mentioned that it does not know what AKP is trying to do. Kongra-Gel chairman, Zübeyir Aydar, who I met in Brussells, stressed that they have not received any information regarding bringing PKK down from the mountains.

This stoppage could be overcome by talking to DTP. However, the severe criticism by the opposition and nationalistic protests pushed the government to inactivity.

In this ambiguous situation, the judiciary and police moved forward and several big operations have been conducted against DTP. Tens of DTP administrators were imprisoned.

The scenes occured after 34 PKK members, who entered from Silopi based on Ocalan's call, scared the government more. and this resulted in a slow down in the initiative the government started by taking some risks. Slowing down put DTP on the target. An approach could be summarized as "DTP is the common target." occured. Despite all its weaknesses, DTP is a party consisting of legal representatives from Turkey's Kurds. They are the ones who can contribute the most for a solution of the question if they are left with enough room. However, the different voices coming from them were reflected in an exaggerated way that can trigger reaction from the public. The west of Turkey was conditioned negatively against DTP.

However this is a fact that the Kurdish question is Turkey's own internal problem. In a hierarchichal rank, the first addressees of this problem are Turkey's Kurds. For them, the most effective power is DTP. Turkey's Kurds, in a way, are the leaders of all Kurdish culture. DTP is the representative party of the struggle for Kurdish identity in Turkey. They should be the first and prioritized addressees for this problem. To bring PKK down from the mountains, Öcalan is one of the most important possibilities. It is possible for Öcalan to contribute toward solving the problem.

The power that rules Turkey does not move from this point of view, despite the fact that it sees this reality.

In recent days, scenarios such as "there are other Kurds, we can settle the matter with them" are produced. If you go to Diyarbakir or any other place in The Southeast, you will see that the demand of identity that DTP voices is the common demand of all Kurds--no matter what parties they vote for.

It is a must to see we cannot get anywhere with the "Good Kurds/Bad Kurds" duality. The demands of almost all the Kurds are common. Despite their different political approaches, different political preferences, there isn't any difference, in essence, in their identity demands.

All this requires stressing the following: For the success of the Kurdish initiative, it is necessary to include Turkey's Kurds in the process. Without them, a result cannot come about.

What I have said for a long time: "It is necessary to include Turkey's Kurds in the process. Without them, a result cannot come about."


No comments: