Place: Turkey

Yet Another Turkish Election

In February of 2019, districts in the Turkish cities of Ankara and Istanbul began selling produce directly to consumers at local markets in an effort to bypass retailers, who had been characterized by President Recep Tayyip Erdoǧan as “terrorizing” society . . .

Read more ›

The #MeToo Movement in the Middle East

The #MeToo movement against sexual assault and rape has animated women throughout the world.  In the Middle East too, despite the wars led by authoritarian states, various imperialist powers,  and extremist religious fundamentalist forces, a #MeToo movement is rising. How . . .

Read more ›

War, Imperialism, and Class Polarization on a Global Scale

From East Asia to the Middle East and from South Africa to Europe

Image

Adapted from a presentation to the Chicago Convention of the International Marxist-Humanist Organization, July 13, 2018.

No to Trump’s, Netanyahu’s, Bin Salman’s Imperialist War Drive Against Iran!

Support Progressive and Revolutionary Opposition to the Iranian Regime

 

ImageFor Iran, the U.S. withdrawal from the 2015 Nuclear Agreement will mean crushing sanctions and direct or continued indirect war declared by Israel and Saudi Arabia with U.S. support. For the Middle East, it will mean further destruction and regional imperialist competition. For the world, it will mean further division between the U.S. and the European Union and further global imperialist competition.

Solidarity with the Metalworkers Strike in Turkey!

Image

Hands off the metalworkers’ strike in Turkey!

Government ban means AKP despotism serves the bosses!

International solidarity with metalworkers of Turkey!

Behind Turkey’s Attack on the Afrin Kurds: Imperialist Machinations in the Middle East

Image

The danger of nuclear war is present today more than ever with Trump’s threats against North Korea and Iran. Without precedent in US history, the president openly states that he is willing to wage war and destroy a nation for US interests, disregarding his allies’ wishes. Trump not only follows the advice of his buddy Benjamin Netanyahu about the Iran nuclear deal, but he also announces that Jerusalem is the capital of Israel. He remains ahead of schedule on the opening of the US embassy there as well as cutting off funding for Mahmoud Abbas for a Palestinian state, unless he bows to Israel and respects Trump. At same time, his military commander General Jim Mattis announces that the US should be ready for war at any moment.

Solidarity with Afrin, al-Ghouta, Idlib Against All Military Attacks

Image

We, the Alliance of Middle Eastern Socialists, oppose the various military attacks on Afrin, Idlib and Eastern Ghouta and support all the innocent civilians in Syria. . . There has been a consensus between all the international and regional powers on the necessity to liquidate the revolutionary popular movements initiated in Syria in March of 2011 . . .

Academic Freedom Goes to Court

ImagePeaceful protest carries no guarantee against violence. In mid-May, Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, the president of Turkey, came to the United States to meet with Donald Trump, who had made haste to congratulate him on winning a referendum in April. Its provisions would  according to the Venice Commission of the Council of Europe  undercut “the model of a democratic presidential system based on the separation of powers” and thereby “risk degeneration into an authoritarian presidential system.”

Book Review

The End of Islamic Liberalism?

Image

Cihan Tuğal, The Fall of the Turkish Model: How the Arab Uprisings Brought Down Islamic Liberalism (Verso, 2016).

In the short time since the 2016 publication of Cihan Tuğal’s The Fall of the Turkish Model: How the Arab Uprisings Brought Down Islamic Liberalism, Turkey has endured an attempted coup, nearly a year of rule under a state of emergency, the widespread repression of dissent through imprisonment and mass firings of teachers and civil servants, and a (likely fraudulent) referendum that has institutionalized the autocratic rule of President Tayyip Recep Erdoǧan. Yet, unbelievable as it may seem, these developments are part of a continuum rather than a rupture, and Tuğal’s book is essential—if not unproblematic—reading for understanding contemporary politics in Turkey, the Middle East and North Africa.

UAW backs Kurdish solidarity call

Image

Unite has welcomed the backing from the 400,000 strong US union, the UAW, for the freedom of Abdullah Ocalan, the leader of the Kurdish Workers’ Party who remains imprisoned in Turkey.

Erdoğan’s Counter-Coup Coup

Image

When I was writing the following lines two years ago, I was almost able to see the smirk on the face of some of my comrades who would subsequently read them:

The (Almost) Coup in Turkey

Image

People in Turkey are no strangers to military coups. Following more than twenty-five years of single-party rule after the establishment of the Turkish Republic in 1923, a coup in 1960 toppled the government of the Democratic Party. In 1971, 1980, and 1997 the military either overthrew or deposed sitting governments.

No To The Military Coup!

True democracy can arise only from the people’s own power!

Image

On the night of July 15, the Turkish society watched a military coup attempt, live on TV. For some it was so difficult to make sense of it that they chose to interpret the whole event as “staged”, being a member of a society inclined towards conspiracy theories. How could one call this a real military coup?

Women of DIP (Turkey) Persecuted

ImageDear Comrades and Friends,

Six women members of the Revolutionary Workers’ Party (DIP) of Turkey are being persecuted for their activity around the International Working Women’s Day. They are now being tried in court for support to and propaganda of terrorism simply because they have expressed solidarity with Kurdish women brazenly repressed and humiliated by security forces.

Borders: Refugees and Responders

 

Image

This talk was given at the Washington State Council of Fighters Educational Convention for 350 Delegates in Spokane, Washington, on April 20, 2016.

The Tightening Vise in Turkey

Image

On March 11, 2016, a Turkish prosecutor dropped a complaint against officials for failing to take adequate security measures both before and after the bombing of a peace rally in Ankara that killed more than 100 on October 10, 2015. Two days later, suicide bombers struck in Turkey’s capital city for the third time in five months. A car bomb was exploded in the downtown neighborhood of Kızılay, killing 36 and injuring many more. As with other recent attacks, the government of the Justice and Development Party (AKP) quickly suggested the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) was responsible for the attack.

The Kurds, Bookchin, and the 
Need to Reinvent Revolution

ImageToday, a year after the heroic resistance of Kobani made it to the world news, it is hardly necessary to give an introduction to the Kurdish struggle, which has now taken a central place in the imagination of the international left, both vanguardist and anti-authoritarian.

A Commune in Rojava?

ImageThe siege of Kobani by Islamic State (ISIS) brought worldwide attention to the Syrian Kurdish PYD (Partiya Yekîtiya Demokrat, Democratic Union Party), the leading force in the Kurdish-majority areas in northern Syria. The PYD calls this region Rojava—literally meaning “land of the sunset” but also translated as “West Kurdistan.” 

Prospects for Turkey

A Historical Perspective

ImageIn a June 2015 election, the new People’s Democracy Party (HDP) of Turkey passed a highly undemocratic 10 percent threshold to enter the Turkish parliament.

Turkey’s Elections: Crisis Continues – And This is Not the Worst Outcome

Image

The November 2015 snap elections in Turkey have given back to the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP) the parliamentary majority that it lost just a few months ago, in the June 2015 elections. However, the election results can neither resolve the crisis of Turkey’s authoritarian and neoliberal order, which is being challenged by the spirit of Gezi Park and new developments in the Kurdish movement nor obscure its complexity.

ISIS in Syria: Stop the march to war – There are alternatives

Image

Militant Islamic State fighters parade on military vehicles along the streets of Raqqa (Reuters)

In the wake of the murderous massacres in Paris, the demand for violent retaliation against Islamic State (IS) is gaining momentum. David Cameron now plans a renewed bid to secure parliamentary approval for UK air strikes against IS in Syria.

At one level, this is an understandable reaction to the fascist-like tyranny and brutality of IS. But understandable reactions and effective reactions are often two different things. The desire for retribution, no matter how seemingly justifiable in response to the slaughter of so many innocents, is not a sound basis on which to frame political and military policy.

Top