november 02, 2023
A few weeks ago a new campaign called “Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan, a Political Solution to the Kurdish Question” was started. What can you tell us about this campaign and the situation of the Kurdish people’s leader Abdullah Öcalan? You also said in some recent statements that the solution for the Kurdish question could also be a solution for the Palestinian people. Can you evaluate this point?
First of all, I respectfully greet Rêber Apo [Abdullah Öcalan] who is leading a historic resistance on the prison island of Imrali. I would like to point out that we are constantly discussing the isolation that is practiced on Imrali. It is said that Rêber Apo has once again been subjected to ‘disciplinary punishment’, but it is easy to see that there is no such thing as ‘misbehavior’ that would make this punishment reasonable. What they are trying to achieve with this is twofold. Firstly, they are preventing any meetings with his family and lawyers. Secondly, Rêber Apo is now on Imrali for the 25th year. There should be a new trial, but this is what they are trying to prevent. From a legal point of view, he should regain his physical freedom.
The ‘disciplinary punishments’ that they give out, are not only concerning Rêber Apo. Now they give these punishments to many prisoners, by using the smallest points as reasoning. They make people serve for 30, maybe even 31, 32 years, in prison because of this. It is called ‘execution through burning’. This has no legal validity and is detached from reality. This should not be accepted. What law is there on Imrali?
Rêber Apo has been imprisoned on Imrali for 25 years because he is a Kurd defending the rights of the Kurdish people. What are the laws according to which this punishment is given? The constitution and the laws that were formed after the fascist military coup of September 12, 1980 do not recognize the Kurdish existence and identity. So a sentence cannot really be given on this basis. There can not be a punishment according to the justification there. Therefore, it is necessary not to accept the legal point of this punishment. This reality should also be more of a concern for the international public. More effective legal struggles should be carried out within this framework.
Another important issue is the campaign “Freedom for Abdullah Öcalan, a Political Solution to the Kurdish Question” that was started on October 10. In a day or two, the third week will be over. With the basis of achieving Rêber Apo’s physical freedom, there is indeed a global campaign for freedom. This is very important and significant. Our international friends started it and the campaign is taken up by Kurdish women and youth. Every day for the last three weeks, new people and groups from different places around the world have announced that they are joining this campaign. It is spreading and the number of participants is increasing. It is clear that the campaign is growing, diversifying and enriching. It started with press releases and marches, now there are tent actions, rallies, larger statements, individual participation, discussion of Rêber Apo’s ideas, and much more. Even those who are not able to take action still participate by educating themselves and working on their own liberation.
This campaign is a campaign for freedom, to be free and to free oneself. In other words, it is a campaign to achieve freedom in theory and practice, to create a free personality and a free life. It is a struggle for the freedom of everyone. Because the responsibility of defending Rêber Apo concerns everyone. Everyone sees their own freedom in the struggle for the physical freedom of Rêber Apo against the system of torture, isolation and genocide on Imrali. A global freedom movement, a global freedom struggle has emerged. And everyone is being mobilized. It can be said that a global movement of movement has begun. Rêber Apo has called it ‘World Democratic Confederalism’. Its foundations are being laid, and indeed it can be said that a global revolution for freedom is taking place. There is a revolution for democratic socialism based on women’s freedom and ecology. In other words, people are acquiring new ideas and reaching out for a new way of life. This is spreading all over the world and in all societies. On all continents, people of all colors and sexes are participating. So there is a radical change and transformation. Such a movement of revolutionary struggle, of freedom struggle, of liberation and democratization is developing on a global level and is developing around Rêber Apo. It is so because Rêber Apo has developed today’s paradigm of social freedom. This paradigm gives a basis to the struggle for freedom of all the oppressed, especially women. The paradigm shows the way to the liberation of all the oppressed. With the ideas of Rêber Apo, everyone can fight against all kinds of fascist oppression and cruelty against the system of capitalist modernity.
On the other hand, there is the Imrali system. The system of isolation, torture and genocide that Rêber Apo has been opposing for 25 years through his historical struggle. This struggle affects everyone. The Imrali system was created through the international conspiracy which was the most concentrated attack in the framework of the genocide against the Kurds. The system of capitalist modernity, the global hegemonic system, was founded on the Kurdish genocide. It was founded on genocidal mentality and policy. Imrali is the center of the struggle against this genocidal mentality and policy. Rêber Apo is the leader of this struggle. He is the leader by his resistance on Imrali. Therefore, it is meaningful and important that this global campaign develops around Rêber Apo.
Kurdish society and women are also playing a leading role, which is also very important. The Kurds are a people that is ignored by this global hegemonic system, the system of capitalist modernity or the system of power and state. They want to destroy the Kurds and commit genocide against them. Women have already been destroyed by the mentality and policies of this system. In this sense, the situation of women and the Kurds is close, in fact quite similar. They are the social groups that the system most oppresses, massacres, genocides and wants to destroy. They suffer the most from the system, but at the same time, they are the first to become aware of the system. They organize and struggle the most, they carry the burden of the struggle and lead it. It is a heavy and difficult duty, but it is meaningful and honorable. It is necessary to be aware of it.
The campaign has been up and running for about twenty days now, and there is movement every day. It was a new global beginning that is spreading rapidly. It will continue to spread and it will certainly bring results. Everyone should see their responsibility in it. Possibilities and opportunities need to be used correctly. All forms and methods of action should be used and therefore creativity is necessary. The Kurdish people, women and youths are already doing this. The Kurds in the four parts of Kurdistan and abroad are in a state of mobilization.
We used to say that the physical freedom of Rêber Apo is the solution to the Kurdish question, the achievement of free life and democracy for the Kurdish people. Now, the freedom campaign at the global level has really shown this. The physical freedom of Rêber Apo means opening the way for the liberation of all oppressed people, opening the way for the liberation of all women and workers. That is why they are so interconnected. This was shown most concretely in the campaign that began on October the 10th. Our international friends have greeted us and on behalf of the leadership of our party, I would like to greet all those who are participating in this campaign. I wish them success and I would like to emphasize that we firmly believe that they will succeed.
Of course, it is important that the campaign spreads more to the Middle East. In this regard, it is especially important that it spreads to Turkey. Recently, 78 intellectuals have issued a statement in support of the campaign. We consider this step as very important and meaningful and we would like to greet the intellectuals who made this statement as a call for peace. Their efforts are of great value. These thoughts need to be spread to the Turkish society, to the women, to the youth and to the laborers. Certainly, a great effort is needed for this.
The situation of Rêber Apo concerns not only the Kurds, but all oppressed people, women and humanity. Both the system of torture and isolation on Imrali and the resistance of Rêber Apo against it. The physical freedom of Rêber Apo should concern the Turkish society more than anyone else. The democratization of Turkey absolutely depends on it. It is a situation that will bring about the democratization of Turkey at least as much as the freedom of the Kurds. In other words, the destruction of the system of torture, isolation and genocide on Imrali and the physical freedom of Rêber Apo are important. It is very significant for Turkey to accept this and for such a mentality and policy to spread in Turkey. The intellectuals have made a breakthrough and an important and courageous step with their statement. This has to continue and spread. Those in the most difficult situation are responsible of doing the most.
Right now there is a war going on. Gaza has become a bloodbath. It is a war between the Israeli state and Hamas. Meanwhile, both the Palestinian people and the Jewish people are being massacred under the conflict of the war barons. These people should embrace Rêber Apo the most, they should focus on trying to understand Rêber Apo and the solutions that he creates. Because it is Rêber Apo who has created the mentality, the politics and the projects of solution that can stop this bloodbath. The people can find a solution there.
The solution of a democratic modernity comes through the concepts of “democratic nation” and “democratic confederalism”. Rêber Apo is a person who made great contributions to the resistance of the Palestinian people. He has recognized, met and talked with all Palestinian leaders. He has been in solidarity and joint struggle with the Palestinian people for a long time. And Rêber Apo also presented the important role of Jewish democracy in the democratization of the Middle East in the best possible way. It is Rêber Apo who expressed and defined the tragic situation of the Jewish people in the most accurate, comprehensive and understandable way. This can be seen in his prison writings, where he sheds light on many facts. In other words, Jewish, Hebrew socialists, democrats and workers can definitely benefit from Rêber Apo’s ideas. Jews have a certain level of sophistication in terms of ideas, and Rêber Apo valued them and brought them to a new synthesis. The struggle against the system of torture, isolation and genocide and for the physical freedom of Rêber Apo is a struggle of everyone. It is a struggle that affects everyone in one way or another.
I once again greet all those who are leading this struggle and wish them success. I once again call upon all oppressed people, especially women, workers, youth and all peoples of the world to join this campaign for freedom.
On the other hand, the war that is being waged in Kurdistan continues and seems to get more intense every day. What can you tell us about this war? How is the resistance of the guerrilla developing and are there any changes in the attacks of the Turkish state?
The situation of Rêber Apo, the solution of the so-called ‘Kurdish question’, everything is related to the war, it is carried out on the basis of the war. All the information about the war is given by the central headquarters of the guerrilla. No information is hidden from the public from our side, but it can be seen that the Turkish state is trying to cover up this war. Nevertheless, in the current situation, the war continues in every possible way. In this regard, October was an important month of resistance and struggle. October 25 was the 31st anniversary of the martyrdom of comrade Bêrîtan. I remember her with great respect and gratitude, as I would like to remember all our martyrs who fell in the month of October.
Our guerrilla warfare is led by YJA Star [the autonomous women’s guerrilla]. As can be seen, the fighters of YJA Star are in the vanguard in all the action balances. On this occasion, I send my greetings and congratulations to the entire leadership and fighting force of YJA Star. The struggle they are waging is the most important and meaningful struggle in history. The force waging this struggle is the spirit, will, consciousness, courage and sharp sword that come from free life. The fighters of YJA Star are the vanguard of the achievement of freedom. The leadership of YJA Star reveals how important and essential ideological and women’s leadership is in war. It also shows the importance and ideological significance of the Kurdish freedom struggle and guerrilla warfare. There is a great ideological struggle and it is developing.
It can be said that there was a turning point at the beginning of October. Some comrades evaluated the action in Ankara as a turning point and I strongly agree with them. I would like to respectfully remember the comrades Rojhat and Erdal. They really showed the necessary struggle spirit in this period. They expressed the necessity of fighting according to the philosophy of Zîlan. They also showed by their actions that there is nothing that the guerrilla cannot achieve and no enemy that it cannot overcome.
There were some developments initiated on the occasion of the anniversary of the martyrdom of Bêrîtan and the anniversary of the founding of the YJA-Star. There is a clear increase in guerrilla actions in October compared to the previous months, which is also shown in the monthly balance. There were some actions that really dealt heavy blows to the AKP-MHP fascist hordes. Therefore, I send my greetings to the resisting guerrillas and congratulate HPG [general guerrilla force] and YJA Star for their great successes. I remember all our martyrs with the greatest respect, love and gratitude, the last one being comrade Cûdî Çekdar who martyred Zap. It is these martyrs who lay the foundation of humanity.
On the other hand, there is another picture. I don’t know how much it needs to be said because the press has analyzed it, but the Turkish army is hiding behind the KDP. This is a clear fact that can be seen because there are pictures and videos of it. Actually, it is hard to understand whether it is the KDP hiding behind the Turkish army or the Turkish army hiding behind the KDP. They are so dependent on each other, so afraid of the guerrillas. They act as if they are one army. Can a force taking orders from two command centers stay together like that? It can’t. So there’s only one command. They’ve reached that level.
This is the situation in the [southern Kurdish areas of the] Medya Defense Zones [guerrilla-controlled areas]. Recently there have been actions all over Zap. Both in the so-called ‘Martyr Delîl’ in the west and in the east of Zap. For example, there was the action in Kokerê, which dealt a heavy blow to the occupation army. The Cûdî mountain and the whole area of Metîna became areas of action. The enemy responded with all kinds of counterattacks; with planes, artillery, tanks, with chemical weapons and even with tactical nuclear bombs. In other words, the resistance experienced there is beyond heroism. The actions have even spread to Xakurkê in Heftanîn. It can be said that the Medya Defense Zones have entered a total phase of resistance.
But it is not only this area. It can be seen that especially since the summer, the areas of Northern Kurdistan have been involved in the war. Recently, there have been actions from Serhat to Amed, Lice and Mardin. There has been a massive development in the guerrilla. It has started a new process on its own front. There have also been some actions in the metropolis.
There is no change in the enemy’s attacks. On the contrary, the blockade, impasse and stalemate are increasing. Tayyip Erdoğan talked about the morality and law of war regarding Gaza. He should do this a little for himself. Let’s not forget that even Hitler said that he got this inspiration from the Turkish Republic. He said that he got it from the ‘Committee of Union and Progress’ and the establishment of the Turkish Republic. Now, everyone who is ‘criticized’ by the Turkish government, by the fascist AKP-MHP administration, sees the real face of the Turkish Republic more clearly.
They try to manipulate the society in Turkey with complete demagogy and psychological warfare. Therefore, the information they give about the war consists of lies. The central headquarters of the guerrillas regularly exposes their lies. The Turkish administration is desperate because it has no solution. The outcome of this war is still not clear. My comrades have stated that without the support of the KDP, without the support of the “village guards” [villagers who are used against the guerrillas either by force or for a lot of money in the service of the Turkish army], the Turkish army would not be able to fight for a single day. They are defeated again and again. A handful of guerrillas can defeat an army. Everyone could see what a heavy blow was dealt by just two people in Ankara. Everyone witnessed the power and capacity of the guerrilla.
The Turkish Republic was founded one hundred years ago; how do you evaluate the development of the country in the last one hundred years? What is your approach as KCK?
As long as the AKP-MHP government continues, as long as the fascist, colonialist, genocidal attacks against the Kurds and the system of torture, isolation and genocide of Imrali continue, the resistance will continue, this war will continue.
There was the very meaningful call of the 78 intellectuals, which we appreciate very much and which I mentioned before. But let’s take this opportunity to say that we did not start this war, these attacks. I mean, everyone refers to 2013-14 and calls this period the ‘period of the solution process’. It was not us who broke this process. Rêber Apo made it clear and stressed that the state prevented the meetings. Since then, they have not let him speak. The aggressor is the Turkish state, is the fascist, colonialist, genocidal AKP-MHP government. Everyone should focus on them and struggle against this genocidal occupation aggression. If everyone fights on their own front, if the results of the struggles are united, this fascism will collapse. It is already collapsing. That’s where all this aggression comes from.
Our leadership, the Co-Chairs of the KCK Executive Council, made a centennial statement. It was comprehensive and important and showed our stance. We care about Turkey, and take its development seriously. Our struggle is also for the democratization of Turkey.
There is no change in the state administration, in the fascist dictatorship of Tayyip Erdoğan and the so-called “People’s Alliance”, but I don’t want to say it like that so that it doesn’t sound like there is an expectation that there will be a change by changing the leaders of the regime change. Of course we don’t have that expectation. We are not saying that there is no change at all in Turkey, but if you look at what has been done, you cannot see any light on the horizon. It is the 100th anniversary of the foundation of the Republic of Turkey and the day after, on October 30, 2014, the so-called ‘çöktürme planı’ [which means something like “plan to force them to their knees” and is the plan of the Turkish state to deny the existence of the Kurdish question and to try to destroy everything Kurdish] was prepared. An attack plan that is actually a genocide against the Kurds. This fascist dictatorship of Tayyip Erdoğan is implementing this plan. He has been in an all-out attack for 9 years. He says that he is attacking the PKK. Of course, they are attacking the PKK, but not only. They are increasing the pressure and isolation in Imrali, they are increasing the attacks on the guerrilla, but they are attacking all Kurds. And the collaborators take part in this. It is especially the KDP and Hüda Par who support the Turkish state. They have lost everything that makes them Kurdish.
The centenary of the founding of the Republic should have been an occasion to question itself and demand accountability for the past century. The state says that it has done so, but what are the results of its researches? Tayyip Erdoğan stands on stages every day, but he doesn’t talk about the problems in the history of the Republic. Does he remember that he once said against Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, “There was a genocide in Dersim”? There was a genocide in Dersim committed by the Republic, whose 100th anniversary is supposedly being celebrated. Did genocide take place only in Dersim? No. There were many massacres and genocidal attacks in Amed, Urfa, Bingöl, Serhat, Koçgiri and many others. Blame the world, blame Israel for their attacks, but don’t forget that you are the pioneers of such attacks.
They say that Israel is expelling the Palestinians. This is undoubtedly true, but at the same time Tayyip Erdoğan is denying the existence of the Kurds. He says, “Anyone who considers himself a Kurd should leave our country”. And also, he once said about all the Kurds living in Northern Kurdistan and Turkey: “Let them go to hell”. The Kurdish society does not forget this.
Staying there for a moment, what can you tell us about the historical relations between the Turkish and Kurdish people? And would you say is necessary for the next century?
A good account of the last century should be based on the account of the last thousand years, because the Turkish people arrived in this region a thousand years ago. It was Alpaslan himself who first established relations with the Kurdish tribes and communities and sent his own soldiers to the Kurds. Sultan Sencer also talked about Kurdistan. Rêber Apo was the first to make researches about it. The Turkish people who broke away from Central Asia first came to Kurdistan and Arabia. Today they say that they fought in Anatolia and made it to their homeland. But how did this happen and who did they rely on when they fought? There is a widespread denial of history. They are trying to rewrite history and cut out the Kurds. For example, they produce a lot of TV series that propagate this storyline.
Kurds and their ancestors have been the ancient people, the ancient society of this geography in these lands for thousands of years, maybe even tens of thousands of years. The Turkish people were supported by the Kurds and Arabs of the region and also received support from many Christian communities, especially the Armenians and Assyrians. There is no problem in having a homeland and a nation, but it should not be forgotten how it was achieved. There are many questions in this regard: From whom and what kind of support did they receive? How did they arrive in Anatolia? What did they rely on when they created their homelands in Anatolia? Who did the Ottoman Empire rely on when it became an empire? How did it take over the entire Middle East in the first quarter of the early 16th century? Now they talk about the imperialist occupation. It was the Kurds who fought against this imperialist occupation. The Kurds were the most effective force in the congresses of Erzurum and Sivas. Mustafa Kemal relied on the Kurds as they were again the strongest force in the parliament opened in Ankara. There was no Kurdish denial in the parliament.
When the Republic was established, the Turkish nationalists seized the state power and started to punish all those who supported them as if they had committed a crime. They did this both internally and externally. Starting with the Circassian Ethem, they shot the guerrillas of Anatolia and continued with the liquidation of all the Ottoman generals, all those who participated in the war, who kept the army alive and enabled it to fight. It was the Kurds who defended Turkey and fought against the British and the French.
After the establishment of the Republic and the seizure of state power, a definition of Turkishness was developed and written in the constitution of 1924. The constitution that is still in force today. It says: ‘The one who is bound to the state of the Republic of Turkey by the bond of citizenship is a Turk. Now, when and where does a Turk exist? According to this only within the borders of the Republic of Turkey. There are no Turks outside the country because they are not bound to the Turkish state by their citizenship. Then there is no such thing as the Turkish world, which they often fantasize about. The Turkish Republic was founded on October 29, 1923, so there were no Turks before that date, because their existence is bound to the existence of this state. Now, to deny the Kurds, to deny other peoples, to deny Turkish history, culture and reality. Such denial is not only very wrong, it has many bad results.
So it is very important to look at the last century. It is a process that actually began in the 18th century and has continued ever since. But there is a basic contradiction. They say, ‘We came from Central Asia, we are the continuation of the Seljuks and the Ottomans’. But you have to ask: What were the Seljuk-Kurdish relations, the Ottoman-Kurdish relations? What about the Kurdish relations in the Republic? Are they the same? Why are they not studied? Why have there been so many political changes? The logic of the nation-state, the fascist, colonialist and genocidal logic, and the Turkish mentality that was developed with the Turkish Republic, this colonialist, genocidal mentality and policy, especially in the approach to different languages, cultures and peoples, must be broken. In this way, Turkey can democratize and find itself.
Why do they feel the need to ignore and destroy others, to commit genocide? If in the past it was because of national weakness, that too has been overcome. But this century is really not like the previous ones. It is a century of tragedy, a century of bloodshed. The Republic must be evaluated. It must be seen for what it has created, but it must also be seen for the mistakes and negativities, for what it has destroyed and damaged. Self-criticism is necessary. Tayyip Erdoğan blamed Kılıçdaroğlu for this, but he has been in power for 22 years. It is the longest government of this republic. He has been the ruler for a quarter of a century. He has practiced this government mentality and policy. So he must be held accountable. He is responsible for the mistakes and errors, he has to correct them. But there is no such approach, there never has been. There is a strange mentality of always seeing oneself as right and seeing others as wrong and blaming them. This does not allow others the opportunity or the chance to live. Such an absolutely hegemonic, power-oriented approach, which sees everything as its own right and does not see others as having any rights at all, is a bad approach, a dangerous approach. It is absolutely necessary to get rid of it.
The fascism of the AKP-MHP has poisoned the society. They have washed the heads of the people. They have brought out hordes of anti-Kurdish fascists and gathered them in the squares. How can this society get rid of them? It is a difficult situation. In some parts, they are even trying to imitate what Hitler did. It is known how much German society suffered to get rid of Hitler’s mentality even after his fall.
Now, they are imitating Hitler blatantly in Turkey. Turkey’s intellectuals, politicians, revolutionary leftists, socialist forces, women’s and youth organizations, workers and labourers should understand this reality well. The social chauvinism is very strong and there is such a fascist bombardment that people cannot get rid of the influence of this mentality. There can be no democratic mentality unless we get rid of it. In that case, the democratic movement cannot develop and a democratic society cannot be formed. In order to democratize the mentality and politics in Turkey, a very intensive struggle and education is needed.
This reality needs to be well understood by the socialists and democrats of Turkey. Intellectuals should take this as the basis of a big struggle. In other words, the field should no longer be left to the AKP-MHP fascism.
We made a lot of efforts, and had hopes that there could be a radical change; still it didn’t happen. Many times we have brought this fascist mentality and politics in Turkey to the point of collapsing, but the global hegemonic system has always supported and protected it. They are doing right now again, because they benefit from it. They carry out their exploitation of Turkey based on this. Now it would be right, preferable, to enter a new century with a renewal, democratization, criticism and self-criticism, to make a new beginning. We have not been able to do this, as we also have shortcomings in this regard. As one of the forces waging the struggle for the democratization of Turkey, we failed to do so. This is clearly a shortcoming. We see this, and give our self-criticism accordingly. Our movement bore the burden of the struggle against the fascism of September 12. The Kurds, the PKK, and the movement, bear the biggest burden in the struggle against the AKP-MHP fascism.
What is needed in the new century? Yes, we couldn’t make a sufficient change, but fascism was very weakened, it was exposed. It has been exposed both internally and externally, and has entered into a state of isolation. While they were saying that they would join the ranks of modern nations, they are now isolated from the world. The government under Tayyip Erdoğan has brought this about. So, if the mentality and policies of this government do not change, Turkey will face even greater disasters. Everybody should take responsibility and we as a movement are doing the same.
We have explained our position, we have made our evaluations, we have given criticism and self-criticism accordingly. Everyone should do this. Especially the socialists, democrats, intellectuals, politicians, women and youth organizations of Turkey should do this. Of course, the rulers and those who are involved in state politics in different ways must also be forced to do this. This mentality and way of politics must be destroyed. The approach of ‘one language, one nation, one state, one country’ is fascism at its worst. These are the basic characteristics of nation-state fascism.
Tayyip Erdoğan considers fascism as a greatness and at the same time he accuses others of being fascists. He has reached this level of unconsciousness. His principles are fascist principles. When he reached the state power, he became like this; an unrecognizable Tayyip Erdoğan emerged. So much so that they call him a world ruler, a statesman, they flatter him. There are many sycophants and he is very susceptible to them. In fact, he has put himself in the most negative situation. The second century did not begin with a radical change, but the ongoing process cannot be prolonged. This fascist mentality and policy will be destroyed. What could not be done in a century will develop in a few years on the basis of a new democratic Turkey, ‘democratic nation’ and ‘democratic confederalism’. This is our belief and hope. We will continue our struggle on this basis.
What can you tell us about the ongoing conflict in Gaza?
Some time ago, Armenians in Karabakh were facing genocide, people were suffering. Now the same situation is happening in Gaza. But some people talk very cheap. They always look after their own interests. Like Tayyip Erdoğan when he spoke in Istanbul a few days ago. It was like an election rally for the mayor of Istanbul. He talked about Gaza, he recited prayers, but the calculation behind it was to win the elections in Istanbul, to turn it into election propaganda. The Palestinian people have been brought to such a situation where they are being sacrificed and slaughtered. God damn anyone who sheds blood for material interests. That is definitely not our approach. We do not have an interest-driven approach. We have established friendship with the Palestinian people on the war fronts. Our movement and the Kurdish people have given the greatest support to the Palestinian resistance. We defend the just cause of the Palestinian people until the end. Genocide is being practiced in Gaza and we strongly condemn it. But how much those who say they are acting in the name of the Palestinian people represent this people, how much they think about the interests of the people or how much they have become an extension of other interests; this must be seen and understood well.
Israel is doing everything against the civilian population. This is part of the Third World War, centered in the Middle East, which has been going on for more than 30 years. The only solution to this is Rêber Apo’s philosophy of ‘democratic nation’ and ‘democratic confederalism’. Rêber Apo has already stated that it will be best implemented as a mentality and a policy, as a project that will even solve the Palestinian-Israeli problem. He called it the most serious conflict. This is our stance as a movement. We are against these mentality and ideological structures that clash in the form of religionism and nationalism. We are ideologically against them. Politically, the Palestinian people are victims of a conflict of interests. We are opposed to this conflict of interests. In this respect, Jewish democrats and socialists criticize the Netanyahu government. We support their struggle and the just cause of the Palestinian people. If the Palestinian people, the Jewish people and the workers of Israel had imagined and based themselves on living together on the basis of their own characteristics in the line of a democratic nation, according to democratic confederalism, and not with two separate nation states and the poison of nationalism and religionism, if such a mentality and policy had developed, these conflicts would have been prevented.
On October 1, there was an action in Ankara, which shook the whole Turkish Republic. On October 4, attacks on the basis of Hakan Fidan’s declaration of genocide were launched against Rojava. There was a strong reaction against these. In the try to prevent this, the AKP-MHP clung to Palestine and tried to deflect the agenda and hide the truth from the Turkish public opinion. That state press, the press directed by the Turkish intelligence service, the center of special warfare, is distorting the facts. It is waging a psychological war. No one should trust them, no one should be a tool for them. Tayyip Erdoğan’s rally in Istanbul was just like that. He turned it into an election rally. It turned out that he was actually negotiating, in the sense of: “You call YPG terrorists and I will call Hamas terrorists”. That is what he openly declared. The October 7 rally revealed who started the war. Tayyip Erdoğan personally took the responsibility. He spoke as the commander-in-chief of the war. No one shell be fooled by this psychological warfare.
No one questions the cause of these conflicts. Instead of asking why there is no ceasefire, why there are no results, they a screaming their opinions at the top of their lungs. The result is always emphasized. Humanitarian aid deliveries for example; yes, they are also important, we don’t say anything about that, but we also need to see the causes. If the causes of problems are not found and eliminated, the problems cannot be fixed. In this respect, there have been approaches and evaluations based on very topical, shallow and excessive results. These were not very correct. There is also a historical dimension to the problem. Genocide has been practiced on the Palestinian people for 75 years. We are against this genocide and in favor of the legitimate rights of the Palestinian people. But historically the Jewish people have also experienced many genocides. A democratic government and free life in their homeland is their right too. We are also against the massacres practiced on the Jews. In this respect, the problem has historical dimensions. It has connections with the development process of the Third World War, which has been going on for more than 30 years. I have mentioned this before and do not want to repeat myself there. There are also important things in terms of ideology and current politics. For example, there is an ideological conflict, deputies of the same ideology clashing with each other. If this ideological approach, that mentality, that is, the nationalist religious mentality is not overcome, if democratization in mentality and thought does not develop, this strife will always be experienced. There will never be a solution.
In terms of current politics, some debaters stand out. Trade routes; these discussions have developed after the announcement of the energy route from India, Syria, Israel, Cyprus to Greece. This is important. China and Russia wanted to establish relations with Europe through Ukraine, but the war in Ukraine put an end to this. Turkey joined in and liked it. No matter how much the Tayyip Erdoğan administration tried to make the old Silk Road work again, the southern route was finally announced. The states reached an agreement. Turkey was excluded because of Tayyip Erdoğan’s mentality and politics. It was left out of this path. The old Silk Road was rendered inoperable. Because there is no confidence, there is no stability, there is war. Even states and capital did not see it in their own interest. The sycophants say, “Tayyip Erdoğan has brought Turkey to something,” but in reality Erdoğan has brought Turkey to disaster, he has made Turkey lonely. As a result, he got up and started to sabotage.
For example, the Karabakh war was developed by the AKP, by the Tayyip Erdoğan administration. It is trying to open a new road from Central Asia through Turkey. For this, Azerbaijan captured Karabakh. Now it wants to take the Zengezor Strait and connect Armenia directly to Turkey by narrowing Armenia even more, taking territory and pushing Armenia and Iran aside. They also fought back, they did not give the opportunity. It was he who waged the war there. This is also how Hamas started the war. I mean, why did Hamas launch 5,000 missiles all of a sudden? And it did it on October 7th. We need to look at the timing, why it happened, who directed it. Tayyip Erdoğan is trying to open a road in Karabakh by occupying it, and he wants to sabotage the agreed road on the Israeli line and the Palestinian line. There was an attempt of provocation. There is such a struggle here. Those who agreed on the road wanted to clear it. Those outside the planning, Turkey and the AKP administration, wanted to sabotage this road project. That’s why it directed Hamas. Hamas is supported by many circles, Iran also supports Hamas. This is not a secret. But Tayyip Erdoğan definitely has a hand in this latest attack. Tayyip Erdoğan directed Hamas just as he directed IS, which went to Damascus, to attack Kobanê on September 15, 2014, he now directed Hamas to attack Israel and caused such a war to start. It is doing this in order to sabotage that place, to make it unreliable and to make the road supposedly pass through it..
Now, I don’t know if it will yield results or not, but what is this war? We need to know who is fighting this war. Tayyip Erdoğan is in a panic, because his guilt is being exposed. He is the one most involved in this. Secondly, he may have been deceived. In other words, he may have been manipulated. Some forces may have given the impression that you can do this job easily. Tayyip Erdoğan is trying to protect Hamas now that there has been a complete turn against Hamas. First he wanted to sabotage it with Hamas. He realized that the calculations turned out to be different; this time Hamas will be weakened and destroyed, so he is trying to protect it.
We should think like this. When Saddam Hussein’s government attacked Kuwait on August 2, 1990, were the CIA and Mossad unaware of this? What were they doing? Why didn’t they prevent it? Because they didn’t want to prevent it. America started the Third World War based on Saddam’s attack on Kuwait. It brought 150 thousand soldiers to the Middle East. This is how it works. For example, until the attack happened on September 11, 2001 America had supported the establishment of Al Qaeda – didn’t the CIA and MOSSAD know about it? Why didn’t they prevent it? They entered Afghanistan and Baghdad as a result of this. In other words, they made a military occupation. So they wanted to take advantage of it. When they saw those tendencies, they supported them. For example, were the CIA and MIT asleep during the coup attempt on July 15, 2016? Was Hakan Fidan, who is now challenging the Kurds, as the Undersecretary of MIT asleep? He wasn’t, why didn’t he prevent it in the first place? Because they controlled and strengthened Tayyip Erdoğan with him; 40 days later, on August 26, 2016, they launched an invasion attack against Syria through Jarablus and Iraqi territory through Çukurca. Biden and Masoud Barzani were in Ankara when this attack began. They gave their approval. If this had not happened, if there had not been that coup attempt, if Tayyip Erdoğan had not achieved such power that bypassed the parliament, he would not have been able to do this.
Even Tayyip Erdoğan knows how many tunnels there are under Gaza. The Israeli army also explains this. But was Mossad, for example, asleep when they were preparing 5,000 missiles to launch an attack? Why didn’t it prevent it? Let’s not say he did it himself, but at least he hoped that he would benefit from something like that. After the July 15 coup attempt, what did Tayyip Erdoğan say? “This is a blessing from God”. And this was “God’s favor” to Netanyahu. Actually, it was not God’s grace but Tayyip Erdoğan’s grace. Tayyip Erdogan gave that grace and brought about this bloodbath. Now, when the calculation at home doesn’t fit the market, this time he is trying to throw Turkey into the fire. He has almost brought Turkey into conflict with the whole world.
Hamas is a Muslim Brotherhood movement and the Greater Middle East Project was actually a project for the Muslim Brotherhood to dominate the Middle East. What did Tayyip Erdoğan say back then? He proclaimed, “I am the co-chairman of this project.” AKP, Hüda Par, Qatar, Morsi, FSA are all part of the Muslim Brotherhood movement called Ahwal-i Müslimin. And Tayyip Erdoğan is also at the helm of it. How is it possible to see Hamas’ relations with Iran and not see its relations with Tayyip Erdoğan? He is definitely the one with the most fingers in this attack, the one who started this conflict process. Israel, America and others were waiting for an opportunity to spoil this path. Perhaps they directed Tayyip Erdoğan from a distance, just as they did with Saddam, so that we would not say anything. And when Tayyip Erdoğan mobilized Hamas to sabotage it, they received God’s blessing.
Now they say they will destroy Hamas. And to destroy Hamas, they want to destroy Gaza. They are practicing genocide on Gaza. What mentality and politics brought the people of Gaza to this kind of sacrifice? What is the role of Hamas in this? What is the role of the Muslim Brotherhood, what is the role of Tayyip Erdoğan? This needs to be seen. Now he is afraid that this will be exposed. Before, he was hiding it, and then, when it was exposed, he openly embraced Hamas. Now he is trying with all his might to save Hamas by saying “there must be a ceasefire”, in other words, he is trying to achieve a ceasefire and save Hamas by loading on humanitarian issues.
Güneri Civaoğlu, while interviewing Rêber Apo at the beginning of 1990, asked him about the situation of Hafez Assad and Saddam Hussein. Rêber Apo replied: “Hafez is approved. Saddam has a case”. Now it seems that there is approval for Iran and trouble in Turkey. If Turkey is not saved from the fascist, colonialist, genocidal mentality and politics of Tayyip Erdoğan and the Republican Alliance, the system he is a part of will put Turkey on the operating table. If they continue with this mentality, Turkey will be damaged, it will lose Cyprus, and even disintegration may be on the agenda. I want to express this here. After a while, the turn will come directly to Turkey. It already has. But when I say Turkey, I mean the AKP and MHP mentality.
A democratized Turkey, a Turkey creates a solution to the Kurdish question will never come to such a situation. In this respect, the peoples, laborers, women and youth have a big role to play. Democratic and socialist forces have a role to play. Based only on the results of the conflict, neither the Palestinian people nor the Jewish people can get out of this situation, nor can humanity wage such a righteous struggle. This fight for interests must be opposed, imperialist plunder must be opposed. The Palestinian people, the Jewish democrats and the peoples of the world must oppose this. I am making a call in this regard. We could say that states should be a little bit more democratic and sensitive, but the logic of the power and state system is clear. We need to fight against them. We need to be able to fight more effectively. The development of democratic modernity against capitalist modernity is the development of the line of ‘democratic nation’ and ‘democratic confederalism’. This is the only solution. If this mentality and politics do not change, if we do not fight on this basis, we will face more genocides and bloodbaths. I have always defended and will always defend the just cause of the Palestinian people. But the laborers of the Jewish people also have their just cause. Provided that they are on the right line and have a democratic approach, we will act together with them as well. Therefore, first the Palestinian and Jewish peoples, socialists, revolutionaries and democrats must solve the problem among themselves. Humanity and democratic circles should also support this. So this is such an effective strategic situation. In other words, a new world, a new alternative world. An alternative world against this power and state system must be developed on this basis. Otherwise, by serving this or that circle of interests in other ways, these problems cannot be solved, nor can a correct humanitarian approach be adopted.
There was the Aydin Youth Movement in Turkey. After the death of a young man in an elevator, there was a movement against the AKP-MHP fascism’s approaches and policies that do not serve the youth. The World Youth Conference is said to be the first of its kind, it therefore is really important. I send my greetings to them and wish success to the youth who are organizing this.
I would also like to make a call to our Kurdish youth. They should participate actively, they should not see themselves alone. They should listen to their comrades and try to understand them. They should bring Rêber Apo, the Kurdish freedom movement, our women’s freedom policy, and the theory of ‘democratic modernity’ to the conference, discuss them well, and represent them. Because youth is the future. The future is in the democratic modernity. The youth who will create the future will create a free and democratic future for themselves to the extent that they comprehend and assimilate the paradigm of democratic modernity developed by Rêber Apo and organize and struggle on that basis.
Rêber Apo once said, ‘We started young, we succeed young.’ On the basis of this slogan, the Kurdish youth owes it to the Kurdish youth to work to bring the youth of the world to a consciousness, responsibility, and organization that will take stronger ownership of their future. Because they were the ones who saw and learned the reality of Rêber Apobefore all the youth. We hope and believe that they will represent it well. This will be an important start. The answer to wars like the one in Gaza and similar places will be provided by the youth who take control of the future by becoming conscious and organized on this basis, and who succeed in creating the future along the lines of freedom and democracy. On this basis, I greet you once again and wish you success.