Turkey

Turkish workers against the military

This is the second in a three part series – read part one: From dictatorship to liberal capitalism

There were many large student demonstrations against the Democratic Party (DP) government in its last days of DP rule (after 1950). This was the background for the 27 May 1960 military coup in which ex-Prime Minister Menderes and two of his prominent ministers were summarily tried and hanged.

The second part of an account of capitalist development and working-class struggle in Turkey, by Marksist Tutum.

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Letter: Stalinism in the Turkish workers’ movement

Author: 

John Cunningham

May I, as a non-expert on Turkish matters, add a few outsider’s comments to the excellent article by Marksist Tutum, From dictatorship to liberal capitalism, in Solidarity 443, 20 June 2017.

Whatever criticisms may be made of the Kemal regime in Turkey, its secularism and advancing of women's rights were significant achievements.

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From dictatorship to liberal capitalism

This is the first in a three part series. Read part two: Turkish workers against the military

A bourgeois republic, led by Mustafa Kemal, was established in Turkey in 1923, and this was an historical turning point pertaining to the development of capitalism in Turkey. However the Turkish bourgeoisie did not totally abolish the old despotic, Asiatic state traditions of the Ottoman Empire.

The first part of an account of the development of capitalism and the working-class in Turkey, by Turkish organisation Marksist Tutum.

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Saudi Arabia tries to push Qatar into line

Author: 

Dan Katz

A simmering conflict between the Gulf State of Qatar and its larger neighbour, Saudi Arabia, has abruptly flared into an open, serious stand-off.

Beginning on 5 June, a Saudi-led grouping of states including Egypt, Bahrain and UAE broke off diplomatic relations, and implemented travel and trade bans against Qatar. Qatar has said it will not retaliate.Saudi Arabia has closed Qatar’s only land border and ordered its citizens to leave Qatar.

The Saudis seem to believe that Qatar is also aiding or sheltering Saudi oppositionists.In fact both the contending states — Qatar and Saudi Arabia — have funded extremist Sunni militias in the Syrian civil war and elsewhere. The Saudis have also provided billions of dollars to fund fundamentalist, Wahhabi-aligned mosques across the world which have been an ideological breeding ground for jihadist groups. And much funding for Daesh (IS) and al-Qaeda comes from individuals in Saudi Arabia — something the Saudis have failed to prevent.

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Big cities voted against the Erdogan regime

Turkish socialists Marksist Tutum comment on the results of the Turkish referendum.


The big cities such as Istanbul, Ankara, Izmir, Antalya, Denizli, Diyarbakir, Adana, Mersin and Eskişehir, where the working class is concentrated, said no to the one-man regime in the referendum held on 16 April.

Turkish socialists Marksist Tutum comment on the results of the Turkish referendum.

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Erdogan tries to reinforce his power

Author: 

Dan Katz

On Sunday 16 April, Turkey’s voters will cast ballots in a referendum. They will decide on proposals from the ruling Islamists, the Justice and Development (AK) party, led by Recep Tayyip Erdoğan.

The main thrust of the 18 constitutional amendments that will be voted on as a package is to highly centralise power in the hands of the President. If Erdoğan wins he will also be able to run in Presidential elections in 2019 and 2024, meaning he could be in power until 2029.

Erdoğan is an unpleasant, thin-skinned Islamist authoritarian who has used a coup attempt in Turkey last summer to persecute all opposition.

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Turkey shifts fast to the right

The state of emergency in Turkey, declared after the defeat of the coup attempt in July against President Erdogan’s AKP regime, has been continued and intensified as repeated terrorist attacks, mostly claimed by Daesh, have hit the country.

“The country is drifting step by step, under the ‘presidential system’, using the state of emergency, to one-man administration”, says Turkey’s Union for Democracy in a recent statement. “However, Turkey needs, not a one-man administration, but a participatory pluralist secular parliamentary democracy and peace”

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Nottingham protest against crackdown in Turkey

Author: 

Gerry Bates

Hundreds marched through the centre of Nottingham on Friday 4 November to protest against the arrest of at least 12 MPs from the pro-Kurdish People’s Democratic Party (HDP).

Kurdish groups are warning Turkey could slip into civil war.

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Syria: risk of aid stopping

Author: 

Simon Nelson

The ceasefire in Syria had already appeared to be on the verge of collapse following a US-led attack on Syrian troops, who, so Russia has said, were fighting Daesh. Then came an air attack on UN aid convoys near Aleppo. Russia and Syria have both denied responsibility, but are suspected of being involved. The US has said the ceasefire is not dead.

The US said its attack on Deir al-Zour was aimed at Daesh, and it was unaware Syrian government troops were present. The Russians declared it was a “display of heavy handedness” by the US.

The ceasefire in Syria appears to be on the verge of collapse following a US-led attack on Syrian troops and an air attack on UN aid convoys near Aleppo.

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Big-power jockeying over Syria

Author: 

Simon Nelson

Chemical weapons have been used by both Daesh and (on a much bigger scale) the Assad government in the Syrian civil war. The verdict is from a final report by the Joint Investigative Mechanism (JIM) of the United Nations and the Organisation for the Prohibition of Chemical Weapons.

Syria’s civil war remains overlaid by delicate politicking between the USA, Russia, and Turkey, all of them with aims at odds with the others.

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