Turkey’s Continued Campaign to Shut Down News Agencies, Silence Journalists

First the press is silenced, then…

It is clear that the international conspiracy against Kurdish People’s Leader Abdullah Öcalan has left deep traces in the collective memory of the Kurdish people.


It is clear that the international conspiracy against Kurdish People’s Leader Abdullah Öcalan has left deep traces in the collective memory of the Kurdish people.

Many lessons have been derived from the international conspiracy that was one of the most destructive events that the Kurdish people have experienced in regards to its political and social outcomes. Right before that happened, the most effective media organ of the time, Med TV, was closed and a reign of terror washed over other Kurdish media institutions.

Back then, the Kurds thought the closing decision was an unfortunate anti-Kurdish act, lamented it, and were hopeful that another channel would open in the place of the only Kurdish channel for sure. The events that followed showed that closing television networks and silencing free press were steps put in place as preliminary steps in plans to slaughter Kurds. We have experienced this thoroughly as a people. Now with every network closing, every attack on the free press, a similar worry emerges within us. Our minds conjure up new February 15 scenarios adapted to the current day. We assume those who think they have a right to rule over the fate of our people have decided once more. Our betrayed psyche searches for signs of this. Unfortunately, the events show that the concerns in this manner are not unfounded at all.

Now, a new wave is washing over the free press, in a very harsh and ruthless manner. First more than 10 networks are closed in Turkey, the workers are arrested, offices of newspapers and journals are raided and sealed, their property seized. Then networks like Med Nuçe and Newroz TV that broadcast from Europe start going dark one by one. All the while, signs emerge that the remaining few stations we follow with worry will also be closed. One worries how we will make our voice heard after all these closures. And right when we must scream the truth with all our might, on the dawn of the day to shout out to the whole world about the cruelty and barbarism, right before the apocalypse and the chaos… Right when so many dawns that will determine the fate of the peoples of the region will clash…

One looks at the era of darkening now. There is a great February cold. Just like 1999… In the military sense and the political sense, the apocalypse is almost at the door for the region. For example, it’s a matter of time until the Turkish army’s operations against the guerrilla forces evolve into an extensive cross-border operation. As such, even though it has evaded the public attention, the attacks and operations in Ertuş (Çukurca) have increased five fold in comparison to the earlier period. The military activity shows that the Turkish army wants to expand the operations into Southern Kurdistan territory. Also by my observations in the border line and the local sources, 70 thousand operation forces have been mobilized to Heftanin line and 80 thousand to Metina line.

As there is discussion that KDP will support such an operation, there is talk that underneath KDP’s provocative statements on the PKK lies the tendency to “burn bridges”. It is not unrealistic that there will be an operation that isn’t limited to the border line but expands more to the south, namely Qandil. There are many signs that there will be an operation that will continue with military ground deployment following an aerial attack involving many fighter jets, which takes its inspiration from the Sri Lankan state’s attacks against the Tamil Tigers. In coordination with all this, massacres against the resisting masses in Northern Kurdistan are an important part of this plan. AKP has prepared a “perfect” atmosphere, so to say, for massacre attempts that will include even the ordinary masses that may pose a “danger” for the future, as much as the organised forces in resistance.

The developments in Turkey’s border with Rojava are of the utmost importance as well. It will be naive to expect that Turkey won’t attack the gains of the free Kurd in Rojava in line with an all encompassing plan, especially in such a period of time. This is a matter of opportunity and timing. Drowning the Rojava revolution in a vortex of an extensive war that will emerge as the clashing of external powers in Syria is a blessing Turkey wishes for and hasn’t given up on. For the coming period, thinking that Turkey won’t make such an attempt and relying on the international forces and the conjuncture is definitely naive. The developments are advancing in a way that may lead to these international forces making decisions in any direction, and the conjuncture is open for all kinds of “selling out”.

The Raqqa and Mosul operations will definitely play a determinant role in the new map to emerge in the Middle East. In both operations, Turkey has drifted far enough away from a winning, correct policy due to their anti-Kurdish stance. In the current situation, reducing the losses to a minimum can be achieved through taking part in these two operations as an effective force and having a say in the new balance in the region. Turkey gives signs that they will continue the stance that will target Kurdish gains in both operations, and that they will include these gains in this ring of fire. In these two operations, what scares Turkey the most is that PKK will take effective advantage of this period of chaos and unrest and emerge with a strong policy. As such, the past experiences have always shown that PKK takes good advantage of these opportunities by falling back on their power to fight and resist.

So, we are on the verge of not one, but several historic developments. Times like these are times when the truth, making your voice heard, explaining yourself and speaking out are very important. Times like these are when the truth needs to be heard louder. Otherwise, in these pitch black silences, the cruelty that speaks in the voice of the powers can win.

Meanwhile, the lack of protest against the closed televisions, newspapers and journals and arrested journalists is painful. It shows that the significance of the situation has not been understood. It has not been understood that the closing of television networks and the silencing of the press are prerequisites of a concept. Here, the idea that new ones will succeed the closed televisions plays a negative role. But there are many reasons and necessities to raise hell. It isn’t a good sign that so many televisions and newspapers are closed, and our voice is silenced, and a deep darkness is planted in our minds.