Communist Youth Organization

The Youth Branch of The Workers’ Communist Party of Iran

Chia Barsen: The Turkish election and Political Islam

The Turkish AKP (Justice and Development Party) will face an insurmountable opposition from the Turkish people in this coming election. Erdogan’s decade long attempts at creating an Islamic hegemony in a secular country, and support for Islamic movements such as the Muslim Brotherhood, has both failed and left the AKP in its weakest state. As the representative of political Islam in Turkey and a major state supporter of Islamist movements in the region, Erdogan’s loss of absolute majority in the Turkish parliament is concomitant to another major defeat for the political Islam movement as a whole and for the Islamist groups in the region. This election is the direct result of the gruelling struggle of the Turkish working-class in the last ten years to stand united (Turks and Kurds) against, and committed to, the toppling an Islamic warmonger.

The result of the last election in Turkey has led to a precipitous increase in anti-Kurdish policies by the Erdogan AKP Islamist party. The result of last June’s election took away the AKP’s absolute majority in the legislature and saw a significant rise in the number of seats for the People’s Democratic Party’s (80 seats, 13.1 percent of the votes). With the loss of absolute majority in the Turkish parliament, Erdogan lost his opportunity for installing a powerful executive team (led by himself).

Since the last election the Erdogan Islamist regime has made it a priority to suppress the People’s Democratic Party (HDP) in all ways possible in order to prevent it from reaching the 10% minimum threshold for representation. One of the major internal steps taken by the Erdogan Islamist regime against the Turkish Kurds has been to politically link and define the PKK (Kurdish Workers’ Party) and ISIS (Islamic State of Iraq and Syria), despite the fact that the two groups are ideologically and politically polar opposite and the PKK is world renown for its successful campaigns against ISIS, under the banner of terrorism. Further, using its propaganda machine (Turkish state controlled media), Erdogan unsuccessfully attempted to tie the PKK as the military arm of the People’s Democratic Party (with its charismatic leader Selahattin Demirtas), and thus charging the HDP for supporting terrorism. Other attacks in the last several months on the HDP include the targeting of its offices by the right wing nationalists, spearheaded by the National Action Party with strong political affiliation to Erdogan’s Islamist party. Other internal attacks include the murder of 32 leftists Kurdish activists on June 20th and the bombing of a Kurdish peace demonstration (organized by the HDP) that killed 100 people. Both attacks that are widely considered to be state orchestrated, were defined by the Erdogan’s state propaganda media as acts of terrorism committed by the PKK and ISIS, in order to further justify the Turkish militarism against the Kurdish population internally and foreign (Syria and Iraq).

The precipitous increase in Turkish militarism in the region since last June’s election is Erdogan’s failed attempts to ameliorate an internal political defeat. It also ossifies and is prescient of the augmenting Kurdish-led anti-Islamist and secularist movement in Turkey and the region. By ending a two year ceasefire with the PKK, Erdogan is using the Turkish military, supported by its membership in NATO, to bomb the Kurdish population in border regions in Syria and Iraq and flatten the Kurdish opposition in Turkey in order to create a favourable election conditions for the AKP this November. It is important to mention here that it is only under capitalism democracy that a warmonger, guilty of war crimes against a peaceful group and civilians, is able to participate in an election and become the president.

Erdogan wants to install a dictatorial power in Turkey in order use state monopoly on violence to imprison a secular and progressive nation within the walls of Islam (such is the case of Iran for the last four decades).  However, this election is more than just about stopping Erdogan from flushing a secular country down the toilet of Islam and Sharia. It is about defeating a major sponsor of political Islam in the region. The nascent growth of Kurdish-led secularist and workers’ movement in both Turkey and Syria can only be protected and ossified from political oscillations if state sponsors of political Islam, the AKP in Turkey, are defeated.

In order to build and protect radical workers’ economies and workers’ movements in the region, such as in Kobane, predicates the removal of state violence committed by the sword of political Islam that looms above the head of all socialist movements in the region. This is concomitant to the larger struggle against capitalism inequality, crisis and penchant for perpetual war.

Chia Barsen

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