For Peace in the Middle East, For Freedom of All Peoples and Faiths

Workers Solidarity Bulletin, No: 77 Editorial

Workers, brothers and sisters,

The Middle East is on fire like a burning pine forest. Each day hundreds of people are killed in Palestine, Syria and Iraq. Everyday thousands of people leave their homes and lands, take refuge in neighbouring countries and become emigrants.

The Peoples of the Middle East are being played off against one another by sectarian provocations. The bloody-minded organisation called Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) slaughters Shiites, Alevis, Christians, Kurds, Turkmenians, Yezidis. They set houses on fire in Rojava, Shengal and Telafer, shoot people, even children, and cut people’s heads. The spreading and escalation of sectarian conflicts give nothing but suffering and tears to the peoples from different faiths that have been living side by side for long. Turkey, where peoples from different faiths live together is too in danger of being thrown into this fire and sectarian conflicts. Especially the foreign policy of AKP which is based on forming a Sunni axis in the Middle East brings this danger closer. So, as workers and toilers in Turkey, we should be very alert about these sectarian provocations.

Brothers and sisters,

The greed and belligerence of imperialist powers, particularly of the U.S. imperialism, turn the Middle East into hell. The U.S. imperialism, in an effort to capture energy sources and shape the Middle East in its own interests, started a war in 2003 and caused a horrible destruction in Iraq. Nearly two million people were died due to the war or war-related reasons. After the U.S. occupation in Iraq, the rulers started a fight for power and tried to obscure this fight under sectarian covers. The Sunni rulers were excluded from power by the Shiite rulers and the battle continues with exploding bombs that kill tens of people each day. Over the last months, the civil war in Iraq is getting more destructive as the organisation called ISIL stepped in.

Syria was dragged into a terrible destruction after Iraq. So far more than 200,000 people were killed and 4 million people left their homes and lands because of the ongoing civil war. The AKP government has a big responsibility for the present situation in Syria. At the beginning of the civil war, the former prime-minister Erdogan stated that they would perform the salaat in Omayyad Mosque in Damascus in a few months. In this way the AKP was to prove how strong Turkey is in the Middle East. Turkey would have a voice in the region and Turkish capital would find new areas to plunder. There is no difference between the Syria policy of AKP and Iraq policy of the USA, they are essentially same. AKP is trying to sell its imperialist and aggressive policy to the toiling masses by telling lies such as “Great Turkey”, “A Turkey having a voice in the Middle East and protecting the oppressed”.

Worker brothers and sisters

As the civil war in Syria spreads, the number of refugees increases. Desperate refugees are forced to accept low wages imposed by greedy bosses and pay high rents for damp and dirty houses. In spite of this grim reality, the bourgeoisie do not hesitate to present Syrian refugees as enemies. But those to whom workers and toilers should react are not those refugees but the wicked capitalists that exploit them.

We, workers, have to realise that the real criminals are not those refugees but the capitalist order that impose low wages, crises and wars. We should see the big picture. A bloody war of division for markets and investment areas is going on in the Middle East. Moreover, this war has a sectarian dimension. And the AKP government drives Turkey into this war.

Only the struggle of organised workers can stop the war and sectarian conflicts in the Middle East. If workers organise all over the region and get united on the basis of class fraternity, they can overthrow the rule of bloodsucker rulers and put an end to the war. Workers of all countries in the Middle East should say enough is enough and get organised to seize the power. When the proletarian power is established, the oppressed Palestinian and Kurdish peoples and all the oppressed peoples will gain their freedom. All the denominations and faiths will be free and everyone will practice their belief freely. Then peace and fraternity will prevail in the whole region.

Brothers and sisters,

The working class of Turkey has a crucial role in the struggle of establishing a proletarian power that would achieve these goals. So, the working class of Turkey, the most crowded and developed working class of the region, should strengthen the struggle for proletarian power in the Middle East, keeping in mind that the genuine criminal is the capitalist system.

Down with imperialist-capitalist powers pitting peoples against one another!

Long live the unity of workers and the fraternity of peoples!

Peace in the Middle East will be brought by workers!

Translated from İşçi Dayanışması (Workers Solidarity) 77, 15 August 2014

2 September 2014