Life is sacred! Stop the violence!: People of Silvan break the Turkish army siege! State forces leaving amidst boos and jeers! | Sendika.Org

1 Dec

Turkish forces are forced to flee the town of Cizre they had been attacking

On the 12th day of the curfew the resistance of the people of Silvan and the solidarity demonstrations and marches takes effect. Turkish forces are forced to flee the town of Cizre they had been attacking. The Kurdish town of Silvan, after Cizre, was under heavy siege by the combined forces of the police, special forces, Syrian jihadist terrorists and the Turkish military for declaring that the town would exercise democracy and people would participate in the governing of the town.

Turkish state did not take it lightly when town after town in Turkish Kurdistan decided to implement elements of real democracy by including the town residents in the decisions and participation in day-to-day operations of their lives. Instead, the traditional way the governance had worked in a top down fashion, where the governors are appointed by the central government. The trend has been that the governors appointed were mostly of ethnic Turkish origin, loyal to the central state and government and had no relationship to the Kurdish population of the Eastern Turkey. Since its inception, Turkish state is organized and run by the totalitarian mentality of the European 1920-1930 years. Since its foundation in 1920’s the Turkish state has not tolerated any attempt of popular participation in government matters.

After the unilateral, individual and illegal declaration of a regime change by the President Erdogan, people of Kurdistan reacted by clinging on democracy as a response. If the president illegally declares a regime change, the people showed that they would implement democracy in response.

At this point, the Turkish state attacks accelerated against the Kurds. Turkish state, as it had done before numerous times, summoned all its forces to prevent any hope of any democratic move. Kurds were being a model, an example of what a democracy would look like. This dangerous trend had to be stopped. With the help of ISIL jihadist militant terrorists, Turkish police, special forces and military started attacking everywhere the Kurds attempted including the people in running of their towns. More than 20 mayors and co-mayors were arrested for this “outrageous” attempt of democratizing the governance.

Many people involved in the democratization and freedom movement of 2013 in Istanbul where an urban, metropolitan movement that lasted months against the same Turkish police, government and the religious, totalitarian, fascist rule wonder why this democratic move of self-rule started by the Kurds does not come up in the West of the country. A similar move to bring women, minorities, the people on the streets into the decision making, as the Kurds have attempted to do, would bring more strength to an egalitarian movement that calls itself the Gezi Resistance. However, before breaking away from the totalitarian Kemalist ideology a similar freedom demand would be hard to take effect.

After the Kurdish town of Cizre’s siege where 24 people were killed by the Turkish forces, including a 35 day old baby, the town of Silvan had its turn.

However, the solidarity and resistance had taken a higher form by now. Clutching on to their Kurdish identity, which is considered to be second or third class citizenship in the mentality of the Turkish state, people formed resistance and defense organizations in their towns and villages against an expected Turkish attack.

Common defense mechanisms were digging trenches and hanging bed sheets in the streets. Trenches prevented the heavy armored vehicles of the Turkish occupying forces from entering the streets. The hung bed sheets prevented the Turkish sharp shooters from assassinating the youth and the people walking and resisting the curfew on their streets.

Also mannequins were planted in the streets, many of which were immediately shot to pieces by the Turkish sharp shooters mistaking them for Kurdish children.

Delegations of peace immediately travelled to Silvan to stand in solidarity with the town folk. These delegations included the Grand Assembly elected representatives of the pro-Kurdish, progressive, left wing HDP party. Thinking that their constitutional immunity against all attacks, including the police would serve as a human shield for the civilian people under military attack the representatives marched the streets of Silvan to meet and mingle with the people.

Even this innocent attempt of the elected Assembly representatives could not be tolerated by the Turkish state. Immediately military helicopters started dropping bombs on the town square people were coming to meet their representatives. The delegation survived by fleeing into neighboring shops.

Next day the police targeted the co-chair of HDP as they fired a tear gas canister to her head which narrowly missed her. The event caused the chair of HDP which received more than 10% of votes nationwide to condemn the attack as an “attempted murder.”

While the entire mainstream media, pro-government papers and the nationalist-racist TV’s ignored the events, murders and the assault on Silvan, the socialists, progressives and Kurds joined hands to support the people of Silvan. Other delegations from all over the country travelled to Silvan to stand shoulder to shoulder with the people under savage Turkish military attacks. Socialist and left wing groups staged demonstrations in nearly all cities across the land to bring attention to the attack against the Kurdish people in Turkey. Many students and organizers and activists were brutally attacked and arrested by the Turkish police for simply hanging a banner against the Turkish state violence.

Earlier, under a similar blockade the representatives of HDP had marched through the fields, hills and mountains together with the neighboring village residents to reach Cizre while the Turkish forces blocked all roads. Pepper sprayed, shot at, insulted and prevented from using public roads, the delegation hundreds of people had entered Cizre effectively humiliating the Turkish state and showing they had no jurisdiction in the Kurdish populated East of the country.

As Turkey escalated its assault against Silvan lately, the people intensified their resistance. Trying to break the peoples’ defenses, Turkish forces insulted them from the loud speakers on their military vehicles, and the police started defacing the walls of the city with graffiti. In many places the police wrote, “Either be a Turk and be proud, or if you are not a Turk, learn to obey!” Other places in Silvan they wrote, “You will see the power of Turks and the Turkish State!”

These provocations however did not deter the people from their resistance to defend their democracy against an “occupation force” as the Kurds are calling the Turkish army.

The result came early today when finally observing the stalemate of the situation where the Turkish state forces were stopped from taking over the town and could not make any inroads into the streets, Turkish forces started to retreat. The Turkish military, in an embarrassing move were forced to retreat. In a video by DIHA (Dicle News Agency whose web sites have been shut down by the Turkish government more than 20 times in the last few months) went immediately viral, the people are booing and jeering the Turkish soldiers retreat from their town. This is a historic event since never before has the Turkish people seen (it is against the law) how the Turkish soldiers are not welcome in the towns they occupy. In the video, people are shouting, “PKK is the people, People are here” referring to the Kurdish guerilla and political force in Turkey. Saying this is illegal in Turkey as the head of the Diyarbakir Bar association found out when he said on live TV that PKK was not a terrorist organization as the Turkish state claims. He was immediately arrested and is facing 7-8 years of prison for disagreeing with the Turkish state.

The withdrawal of the soldiers comes as hundreds of socialists, Kurds and left wing supporters of the people started arriving to Cizre. Against the orders and threats and the imposed curfew a “tent of resistance” was erected to inform and organize the town residents. However, as the co-mayor Kerem Canpolat explained there is still no word on civilian casualties since the special forces and sharp shooters on roof tops do not allow entry to some Silvan neighborhoods where heavy clashes took place.
He expressed his concern, saying, “We don’t know what they have done to the people. They are breaking down doors and attacking the residents.”

This morning a march by lawyers took place, again under threats of murders, in the streets of Silvan, calling attention to the Turkish state lawlessness. In the face of peoples’ resistance and the gaining support and solidarity, some special forces were also ordered out of some neighborhoods. The cell phone services that was cut by the security officers was reinstalled. When the police prevented another march from entering a neighborhood with the excuse of diffusing booby traps, the lawyers staged a sit in at the entrance of the neighborhood. When the crowd started pushing back to enter the neighborhood to take food and supplies, the police and special forces too were forced to retreat and open the streets. The crowd then entered and was greeted by the residents, all chanting together, “We will only win by resisting!”

And on the streets the resistance actually did win. The Governor announced at noon that the curfew has been effectively lifted. And as if nothing happened, and as if there was no resistance that forced the lifting of the curfew and the withdrawal of the forces, the Turkish governor, with no shame, “Thanked the people of Cizre!”

In the video, as the soldiers are forced to pull out, they have to be protected by the same Kurdish people they were bombing only yesterday. Some Kurdish people put their arms on the shoulder of the soldiers to protect them from the crowd’s anger, but also advise them saying, “The people you were murdering is now protecting you.. Please go and never come back here again!” Some are seen kicking the tank that was firing on the people only the day before. As the Turkish soldiers run for cover, one Kurdish resident jumps to hit the soldier with his shoulder, showing the feeling of the people. Elsewhere children can be seen shouting, “Murderers” to the Turkish soldiers. As a result, some soldiers are seen crying and covering their faces. People are shouting, “We are not like you, we don’t allow lynching.”

Sendika.Org News (Mehmet Bayram)


Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: