‘After Gezi: Erdoğan and political struggle in Turkey’ chronicles a year of uprisings, resistance and repression since the Gezi uprising in Turkey.
Political struggles over the future of Turkey have left the country profoundly divided. Former prime minister, now president, Tayyip Erdogan, has fuelled the growing polarization through his authoritarian response to protests, his large-scale urban development projects, his religious social conservatism, and most recently, through his complicity in the Islamic State’s war against the Kurdish people in Northern Syria.
When considering elections in the U.S. the tendency is for voters to look at the issues placed in front of them rather than at history, political trajectory and who it is that chooses the issues? On their face Republicans, broadly considered, are more direct shills for the worst of the corporate-state— Wall Street, multi-national oil and gas companies, munitions manufacturers and replacement of any and all democratic tendencies with corporate interests. This written, Democrats have been the cleverer proponents of these same interests, the clean-up crew that poses state support as response to ‘natural’ catastrophes that are exactly and precisely the product of self-cannibalizing corporate-state capitalism.
Political strategy within the mainstream, the choice between slower or faster decay, leaves out of its calculation the possibility of break and rupture that are the most likely ends. Wall Street, which counts ‘both’ political parties in the U.S. as wholly owned subsidiaries, has had three crises of increasing magnitude in as many decades. The oil mafia, the CIA-MI5-BP-Exxon Mobil-military oil and gas establishment, is launching wars at increasing cost with decreasing results except inasmuch as human and environmental catastrophes sustain it. And the ‘political’ establishment that sits metaphorically atop this morass retains public attention only through infinite iterations of manufactured cultural difference.
[When people rise, and believe that the State offers no relief or solution, they turn away from elections, reject the credibility and false promises of the political system, and consider what it will take to take matters into their own hands. It happens all over the world. — Frontlines ed.]
[The Indian state’s war on tribal people (adivasis) and their Maoist champions is guided by the historic colonizer’s strategy book. When they order troops from colonized nations within India to fight people rising against Indian State terror, it is useful to remember …. this has been done, many times, before.
When hostages identify with their captors, it is called the “Stockholm Syndrome.” As Malcolm X pointed out, when “House Negroes” see the Master’s house is on fire, they run for water to extinguish the flames, while “Field Negroes” get gasoline so the fire will burn more intense. In this sense, as Steve Biko said, “The most potent weapon of the oppressor is the mind of the oppressed.” These “mental” weapons for the oppressors become material, when the oppressed take up arms for the oppressor. The rejection of such colonized deployments is a critical part of every liberation and revolution.
When the French colonizers fought the British colonizers in North America, they manipulated indigenous people (“Indians”) to do their fighting for them. When, after the US Civil War, the Northern victors set out to conquer the native “Indians” in lands to the West, they deployed Black soldiers (“Buffalo Soldiers”) to carry through the colonization fight. When Europeans were facing uprisings across colonized Africa, they most commonly sent their native colonial troops to suppress the anti-colonial challengers.
Hundreds of such examples dot the pages of colonial history – and in some cases, like the San Patricio Battalion (Irish migrants who were deployed by the US in the “Mexican War” of the 1840’s), or Black troops deployed against the Filipino independence fighters in early 1900s, or US soldiers in Vietnam who became resisters and fraggers, the deployment of oppressed soldiers against other oppressed peoples was rejected and many refused to fight, and some joined the resistance of the colonized. today in Nagaland, in Chhattisgargh, and everywhere oppression and resistance is found. — Frontlines ed.]
MCPM urges Nagas to resist deployment in Maoist areas
Correspondent IMPHAL, Nagaland Post, October 23, 2014
The Manipur based underground group Maoist Communist Party Manipur (MCPM) has asked Naga Regiments not to allow themselves to be deployed in the Maoist stronghold areas of India, especially in Dandakaranya Revolutionary zone.
Publicity and propaganda secretary Comrade Nonglen Meitei of the outfit, in a statement dispatched to the local media, appealed to the Naga Regiment to oppose the implementation of this decision regarding their deployment.
It further appealed the regiment not to go to Chhattisgarh as “slaves” while urging to raise their voices against the forceful deployment and showed solidarity towards the revolutionary people of that region who are fighting for their very existence. Continue reading
[In India, 2014 has brought many issues to the fore, not least of which is the rise of Narendra Modi as national leader, after securing his notoriety as the protector and defender of the anti-Moslem Gujarat Massacre over a decade ago. Modi’s rise, welcomed by Western imperialism and multi-national corporations, has brought further national centralization of the state’s brutal repression against oppressed peoples, tribals, dalits, democratic and revolutionary activists. And the 2014 Modi-India persona further disguises the official national culture — Hindutva excluvist, caste-ist, and xenophobic — by hypocritically and pretentiously claiming a humanitarian, peaceful, and moral charm or charisma by further invoking a mythologized Gandhi as the Father of Indian National Identity. In challenging this mythology, Arundhati Roy has provided an important counter-narrative, and has come under vitriolic attack from The Powers That Be. See the following video interview by Laura Flanders, and the magazine interview by Leena Chandran, for details on the struggle for clarity and truth about Mahatma Gandhi. — Frontlines ed.]
On The Laura Flanders Show: Author/activist Arundhati Roy on the Annihilation of Caste, B.R. Ambedkar and the Western myth of Mahatma Gandhi
Hidden in plain sight
by Leena Chandran, Manorama Online
In July, Arundhati Roy provoked outrage from many quarters by stating that the generally accepted image of Mahatma Gandhi was a lie. Speaking at the University of Kerala, Thiruvananthapuram, she also called for institutions bearing his name to be renamed. The Booker prize winning author’s comments rekindled a long-running historical argument over Gandhi’s views on caste and catapulted hot debate in Kerala media. In this exclusive interview Arundhati Roy tells Leena Chandran why she will not be changing her views on Gandhi.
The Gandhi controversy is a belated one, I feel. It should have taken place earlier this year had people closely read ‘The Doctor and the Saint’ soon after its publication. In fact, what you said in the Ayyankali memorial lecture at Department of History, Kerala University, Thiruvananthapuram is not as inflammable as the ideas you share in’The Doctor and the Saint’…
I wouldn’t go so far as to call ‘The Doctor and the Saint’ inflammable, though of course it has generated a fair amount of controversy from many quarters, even some unexpected ones. That’s to be expected, because it’s vexed territory. Yes it does question conventional ways of thinking, mostly by quoting from the lesser known writings of Gandhi. It was written as an introduction to Ambedkar’s Annihilation of Caste. Ambedkar’s views challenge the established order in profound and radical ways. The controversy around Gandhi’s views on race and caste started long before I wrote The Doctor and the Saint. You could say that it started with the Ambedkar-Gandhi debate. It has been debated for years in the world of Dalit politics—but that has been carefully and successfully kept out of the establishment discourse. The mayhem in the Kerala media post my Ayyankali Memorial Lecture is just noisy posturing by some people who couldn’t be bothered to read Ambedkar’s Annihilation of Caste, or The Doctor and the Saint, or anything much else. Not even the works of Gandhi who they are so keen to defend. There are many vested interests involved in this debate. It may be too much to expect them to change. But the young will change their views. For sure.