General Secretary of Communist Party of Turkey (TKP), Kemal Okuyan, answered the question of soL news regarding the issues on the national and international agenda these days. Okuyan was asked on many titles from the massacre in New Zealand to the local elections process in Turkey. He stated that while the credibility of the bourgeois parties has been declining radically, the only option for the people is to fight for a better world.
There was a massacre in New Zealand last week. TKP said in its statement that the massacre is a reflection of the dilemma that capitalism is in. Can you elaborate on this argument?
It does not matter if it is New Zealand, Germany, the USA, Turkey, Netherlands, India or Egypt. Capitalism does not give people hope anywhere; on the contrary everyone is worried. Fear of unemployment, the cost of living, the long working hours, homelessness, and more... It is very clear that in a world where some are extremely rich, this situation is a cause of rebellion. It is a cause of rebellion even for the most obedient. So what will they do? They will divide the poor, the oppressed, the dissatisfied; they will create other conflicts for the people to get angry with.
Ethnic and religious discrimination or fanaticism has not emerged to meet this need, but it is used, fed and shaped by this need. The hostility towards immigrants is also the same. They are the source of cheap labor, on one side, and they provide the perfect opportunity to divide the working class, on the other side. This is a very simple equation; you should answer the question of who benefits from making the Pakistani poor enemy to the Indian poor. Whom is it for? It benefits the big capitalists in Pakistan, helps international monopolies in India. People forget class conflict; Hindus get their knife into Muslims and vice versa.
And that is not the whole story. Arms monopolies sell billions of dollars of weapons through these conflicts, which makes the winner capital in any case. Furthermore, within the internal competition pf imperialism, states use ethnic or religious fanaticism as they wish. Can we say that intelligence agencies have nothing to do with the massacre in New Zealand and then in the Netherlands? Finally, they are keeping ethnic and religious fanaticism as a precaution against workers' movements, revolutionaries and communists. You can make the groups that are under the influence of ethnic and religious fanaticism to do any evil. Let me give an example: The European Union is constantly complaining about the rise of the "extreme right", but almost all states in Europe, especially Germany, are holding neo-Nazi organizations at hand. Because they do not trust their base; because they know that the working masses will eventually say "enough is enough."
While the massacre was discussed in many dimensions, there were those who compared it to the Charlie Hebdo massacre. What do you think about such comparisons?
If, for religious or ethnic reasons, someone kills people he does not know, the essence of it is the same. Racism, nationalist or religious fanaticism cannot have any legitimacy. Is there a rational side in the phrase "my race is superior"? This foolishness is one of the main reasons why imperialism is still able to govern the world. Apart from this generalization, each massacre has its own dynamics and none are the same.
Every massacre in Europe, for example the one in France, meant further restriction of the freedom of the working class. European middle classes and workers with secure jobs can give up their rights in return for the concern of "security". State of emergency benefits the working class everywhere, not just for Turkey; the right to strike is restricted or completely eliminated, for example. Therefore, we can never be sure about the power behind the massacres. What is important is to destroy the sovereignty of the capitalist class that will do all kinds of evil for its profits and to eliminate the conditions of existence of all kinds of fanaticism.
While videos including violence cannot legally be published on social media, the footage from the massacre was removed by the company after 3 hours. Moreover, the same images were published at the AKP rally, so it was on all the news channels that were broadcasting live.
Turkey has a single rule right now: Political power cannot be restricted in any way. It is clear and not surprising. But let me remind you. If a political power feels obliged to use "unconditional freedom" to survive, it means it is actually coming to the end.
The allegation that the women on March 8 protested the Azan in Beyoğlu could lead to dangerous developments in Turkey and the rally to protest the women by the Islamic group proves that. The government continues repeating this lie.
This is repeated many times. They're always lying. Openly and without any hesitations. After this last lie, undoubtedly, very serious developments could be experienced. You cannot always control fanaticism. But usually, they do. They have created a group of people doing what they are told. This means that the ones in power are responsible for every scene happening.
Are you worried about those following the developments in Turkey only from the media outlets controlled by bourgeois politics, considering that lying is now normal for bourgeois politics?
Obviously, we're worried about all our citizens. Because this corruption threatens not only one segment of the population but the whole society. Those who are not within the sphere of influence of political power can also exhibit similar behaviors. There is, of course, the share of other components of bourgeois politics using the same methods from time to time. In this sense, a political culture polarization needs to be created in Turkey. The language of politics, which harms its opponents by developing and strengthening distorted, deceptive, diseased values, must be condemned. Unfortunately, social media offers a serious ground for corruption.
The bourgeois parties are attracting attention with their rally participants nowadays. In addition to trying to increase the number of attendees by paying money, they sometimes bring students to electoral rallies after telling them they would go to the opening of a park. Could this be a sign of hopelessness?
They've done this before. But now, they need to do more. Because there is no interest. People are tired of listening to strange debates in the midst of this economic crisis.
You also held a rally the previous weekend, the number of those who said " this is my first rally with TKP" among the participants was remarkable; how would you evaluate the rally? How is the electoral campaign going for TKP?
The rally in Kartal was exciting and pleasing in terms of participation. However, a very small part of the interest TKP arouses was reflected in the rally. While the credibility of the bourgeois parties declined radically in the economic crisis environment, the steps we took in line with our decisions carried us to a much wider public. This is just the beginning, but in the March 31 elections, we will see how meaningful this beginning is. People began to see that acting together, solidarity, creating solutions, organizing, fighting for a better world was the only solution.