The words British PM Theresa May uttered while sitting alongside the renegade president of Turkey, Mr. Recep Tayyip Erdogan, still rings loudly in our ears. It has been a few weeks, and those words, demonstrative of a sickening arrogance with power, still ring hollow and hypocritical. “It is important,” Mrs. May said, “that in the defence of democracy, which has been facing extraordinary pressures from the failed coup, instability across the border from Syria and from Kurdish terrorism, that Turkey does not lose sight of the values it is seeking to defend.
Instability across the border from Syria and from Kurdish terrorism? What exactly does Mrs. May even mean?
We have seen this before. The American Revolution to seek independence from British colonialists took 18 years. And who, but the British, wanted to send a criminal army of bandits to uproot their revolution? Thankfully, the new patriotic nation of the Americans were wise enough to close their borders to prevent the British from exporting the instability that would come with a rampant “Criminal Army” running around the country. Inevitably, the British decided to instead, send their army of criminals of almost two hundred thousands -- who had committed the most socially corrupt of crimes -- to what we now know as Australia. By the year 1788, the British decided to bomb the land of the Aborigines’, and resettle these criminals to a land that did not belong to them.
But this is the past, the careful reader may quip. Yet, it is precisely Turkey, an ally of Britain, that over the course of the past few years has trained and armed the most criminal vagabonds of the Syrian civil war. It has given them a “Free Syrian Army” flag to loot, pillage, and destroy the city of Afrin. It is no wonder then that Britain can speak in such Orwellian tongue, and say that the revolutionaries who held Afrin, were, in fact, the source of instability for Turkey. Australia yesterday, Afrin today.
One could say Turkey took their strategies from a British playbook. The British were the masterminds in weaving networks of an assortment of criminals to do their dirty work for them. To kill two birds with one stone, they even tried to organise an army of supporters of the Irish Independence Movement and forced them to go along, so they can use them as part of their killing machinery and get them killed too.
(This didn’t always go according to plan, however, as one of these fellows was Mr John O´Reilly – most likely a member of the Irish Republican Brotherhood, and a supporter of the Irish people, who managed to escape from the British and succeeded in plans to go all the way to America. Free in America, Mr O´Reilly became a famous writer and editor who would dedicate his life to struggling for civil rights.)
Not only does the British government have neither the right, nor moral high ground to preach about instability, it most definitely shouldn’t have the courage, and should be ashamed to even utter the words “Kurdish Terrorism”. Only the Gods know what British colonialists have done to the original and indigenous peoples of Australia, Africa and Asia. The British colonialists have murdered, raped, humiliated, mutilated, displaced, deported, exiled, discriminated and have committed much more unimaginable crimes on these defenceless peoples.
The British colonialists have destroyed the lives of millions and millions of people. The main source of British national wealth and capital are built on theft, plunder and overexploitation of the wealth of other people around the world. There is hardly a word to describe such a crime against humanity.
Once again, this continues until the present post-industrial age albeit after learning a lesson in the 20th century that from now on they must continue to do their actions more subtly. Britain still sells deadly and internationally banned weapons and military intelligence to fascistic, totalitarian and dictatorial regimes. She still funds weapons smugglers and engages in the politics of interference. And whereas Western colonialism – or shall I say neo-colonialism and imperialism -- includes also France, Germany, Portugal, Spain, Italy and others, Britain is its pioneer and mastermind. And is not British colonialism terrorism in itself?
When Mrs May reassures us that Turkey is a “true friend”, we must believe her, for these true friends have indeed a lot in common. The latest Turkish atrocities against Kurdish people and other peoples in the region, Turkey´s support for ISIS, Jabha Al Nusra, Sultan Murat Brigades and other radical Islamist groups in the area reminds me of the Mongol Turks burning Baghdad in 1258. In its pillage, murder, and demographic change, it also reminds me of Britain.
The phrase “instability across the border from Syria” is, therefore, strange for many reasons. Who is causing instability in Syria, save for Turkey and Iran, the leading two – dare I say terrorist -- countries which actively interfere in Syria? Turkey is the only country which openly has allowed and still allows the free movement of all kinds of radical Islamist terrorists. Be they from China or Morocco, if they want to get into Syria, they must pass through Turkey, and the Erdogan regime lets them in and out.
True friends can also be partners in business, for instance, the White Helmets seems to be an Erdogan- British enterprise where with the support of Britain and Turkey, they act as a public relations front for an occupation based on forced displacement, pillage, looting, and then illegal settlement (in that order). It is as if the White Helmets, an extension of Erdogan’s regime, think they can replace the UN (which Turkey has banned from Afrin) and give a brutal occupation a human face. There were good reasons behind the US pulling back its financial support to the White Helmets and other so-called moderate Islamists.
Of course, given that Britain is on its way out from the EU, Theresa May figures that they need the dictator´s money, a clear window into the age-old British policy of 'the ends justifying the means'. It gives us a clue as to why his Excellency, Mahatma Gandhi, once likened Britain to Nazi Germany. “We resist British imperialism no less than Nazism...” Gandhi wrote to Hitler himself, “If there is a difference, it is in degree”. For to Gandhi, practices of barbarism, whether under the British Bayonet or the German chokehold, were at the core of the matter, and were importantly the target of resistance.
The “true friend” of the British Prime Minister, invaded and looted the Kurdish city of Afrin before the eyes of the International Community. And today, Erdogan, shamelessly preaches about morality and ethics, as if he is His Holiness the Pope himself, and meanwhile, his soldiers break their Ramadan fast with stolen food from Kurds. These soldiers, which imagine themselves to be pious, eat some of the worlds best olives, which they pillaged from Afrin, in an invasion, they named “Operation Olive Branch”, with no shame whatsoever. Cruel irony that could have only happened with Britain’s green-light, put best by Boris Johnson who took to Twitter to express the government’s view that “Turkey is right to secure its border” in its operation to invade Afrin. Such absurd times.
Just as it was in the past, racism is central to the maintenance of British Empire. On what basis can the British PM, Mrs May, even underline the concept of “Kurdish Terrorism”? As Mr Ali Has, a Kurdish solicitor and expert on terrorism and the Criminal Justice System, and many others have insisted, terrorism “is not an ethnically specific term and therefore cannot and should not be used with reference to a specific ethnic group”. To be sure, this deliberate, malignant usage of words is not an error of phrasing. It is racism. Mrs May possesses enough knowledge about the different and many definitions of the word “terrorism.” She was pandering, and if she had needed to be reminded, then for sure, she would not have even the basic qualifications to be the Prime Minister of Britain.
It´s understandable when the reactionary Islamic groups from all over the world, not just the radical Islamists, gather together against the Kurdistan liberation movement. The Kurdish movement is, after all, a movement which also has a secular, pluralistic, gender-equality and social justice approach paralleling its national liberation line. The question is now what kind of theory could explain the standpoints of the government of Britain towards such a liberation movement which has cried for international cooperation, and a peaceful and a democratic solution to the Kurdish Question since at least the Sykes-Picot agreement?
It´s a fact that no other nation in the world has marched so many millions of miles in so many places and in almost all over the world, day and night, asking for a peaceful solution. The Kurds only want a resolution to the Kurdish question and solidarity with their just cause.
All eyes, therefore rest on good and honest British people, the thousands, which could potentially become the millions of British writers, intellectuals, feminists and Democrats, who have all responded to Mrs May´s cheap populist neo-conservative and neo-colonialist accusation against the Kurdish people.
Immediately after Mrs May´s “Kurdish terrorism” statement, there have been many attacks against Kurdish people in Britain and Greece. Just on the 25th of May, 10 Kurds have been recorded to be in critical condition in Greece, while many others have been injured severely. The attackers are radical Islamists; all of whom praise Erdogan for his anti-Semitic, anti-Western, anti-secular, misogynistic, Muslim Brotherhood ideology.
This “True friend” of PM Mrs May is an aggressive man who still loudly denies the Armenian genocide, the massacres and atrocities against Assyrians, Kurds and non-Islamic groups. When Mrs May waves the flag of “The Burden of the Nation” of Kipling, the other side of Britain, the side of democracy and sister- and brotherhood must wave the banner of solidarity and friendship with the oppressed and the victims of colonialism. An official apology from the Conservative Party is at least expected and will suddenly make sense too.
Either way, what is sure is that the Kurdish liberation movement will undoubtedly win. The Kurds will gain their national and democratic rights, and the hundreds of thousands of Kurdish youth and their friends, the beautiful souls of boys and girls who struggle around the clock will make this very dream come true.
Rebwar Rashed has been the Co-chairman of the Kurdistan National Congress/ KNK since September 2015.