Tag Archives: Syria

The Kurdish Self-Governance Movement in Turkey’s South East: an Interview with Haydar Darici

For the past year, foreign coverage of Turkey has been focused on spectacular events: elections, terrorist acts, shooting down of Russian planes, and other geopolitical gambles. Throughout this period, however, a quiet revolution had been taking place in the Kurdish Southeast of the country in the form of the self-governance movement, which the Turkish state in the last weeks has been violently trying to suppress as part of its war with the PKK. In an interview, Lefteast asks Haydar Darici what autonomy looks like. Rossen Djagalov (RD): Could you first tell us what about the origins of the self-governance moveme ..

Interview: Gilbert Achcar on the Russian military operation in Syria 

Ilya Budraitskis: It has been several days since the start of the Russian military operation in Syria and the goals and strategy of this operation are still unclear. The explanation coming from Russian officials is unclear. On one hand they put an anti-ISIS agenda as the main reason of the operation, and on the other they present it, like Putin did at the UN, as an aid to the legitimate government of Assad. What do you think is the real goal of this operation? Gilbert Achcar: The initial official reason for the intervention was designed in order for Russia to get a Western, and especially American, green light. S ..

Why is Russia backing Assad?

Note from the LeftEast editors: this article written by the editors of the Russian socialist website OpenLeft.Ru was posted in an English translation by Nick Evans at RS21.Org.Uk. A whole range of evidence [also here] indicates that Russia is activating its military aid for the Syrian regime of Bashar al-Assad up to the point of direct involvement of Russian troops in the Syrian conflict. Why now in particular, and what lies behind this? Taken individually, neither military and political ties, nor economic ties between Russia and the Syrian regime are sufficient to explain the stubborn support for Assad from ..

The Western Hypocrite at a Crossroads

“I’m obliged, unfortunately, to note that the word ‘hypocrite’ has been and will continue to be a fixture within the diplomatic lexicon,” Maria Zakharova, the spokeswoman for the Russian Ministry of Foreign Affairs, announced recently, while talking about Russia’s divergence from the West on the situation in Syria. It is hard to argue with the point. If the American and European rhetorical attacks on Russian internal politics have focused on Russia’s imperial ambitions and its aggressive “revisionism” within Post-Soviet space, then Russia has answered those accusations with reference to “doubl ..

#crossingnomore: “We have forgotten what it is like to feel safe”

by Caoimhe Butterly, source facebook A few kilometres away from the small Serbian border town of Sid, a dirt track through corn and turnip fields serves as passage to tens of thousands of women, men and children seeking refuge and lives of more possibility. The unofficial border crossing between Serbia and Croatia is surrounded by sun-lit verdant fields, apple orchards in the distance and a calm that brings temporary respite to those who have been on the road for weeks or months. The threat of militarised borders and recent memory of dehumanising conditions along the way is temporarily kept at bay as those walkin ..

Lebanon’s Garbage Politics. And interview with Elias El Khazen.

Mattia Gallo: What are the reasons that led so many people to demonstrate in Beirut in recent days? How did the protests start? What are the claims, slogans, and demands of the people who took to the streets? Elias El Khazen: Since the end of July, protests have been occurring in Lebanon against the failure of the Lebanese state, in its two instantiations, the pro-Syrian March 8th and the anti-Syrian March 14th coalitions, which have taken turns governing the country for the last decade, to agree on a new contract for waste disposal and the consequent build-up of rubbish in the streets. Some of these protests too ..

#crossingnomore: “We don’t want to drown no more!”

Note from the LeftEast editors: this article has been written by Mathias Fiedler, currently in Istanbul, for BorderMonitoring.Eu. The article is reprinted here with the permission of the author. We also insert a video which the Marxist website Marksist.Org has published (below) with the voices of the Syrian refugees at the Edirne bus terminal. It has been in planning for some time. While many people are trying to escape at Izmir and Bodrum via boat for quite a long time now. Especially in the warlike areas at the borders with Syria and Iraq, the pogroms against Kurdish civilians and hundreds of HDP offices ..

“You are all Armenians!”—The Place of Cizre in the Terror Wars

This past weekend a stroll through a middle-class section of Turkey’s capital revealed nothing out of the ordinary besides a somewhat unusually high number of flags in store windows. Beneath the crescent and star against a blood-red background there appeared occasionally messages of grief for fallen soldiers and condemnations of “terror.” Terror is a good word for what the Peoples’ Democracy Party (HDP) Parliamentarian Mehmet Ali Aslan (Mardin) reports from the Kurdish city of Cizre under police curfew: “All through the night artillery and mortar fire continued. All power lines have burst. At this mome ..

Turkey: Academics Call for Peace and Justice

We, the undersigned academics, are deeply concerned about the escalating violence after the general elections held on June 7th in Turkey. After these elections, AKP, the previously ruling party, has lost its absolute majority status and yet appears to act as if its status has not changed, undermining the electoral votes. The transition government put together with the AKP-appointed ministers has embarked upon a military and political campaign within and outside of Turkey. The horrific suicide bombing in Suruç, Turkey, appears to be used as grounds for the justification of the recent military operations. On 20 Ju ..

“We need to support forms of liberation struggle unconditionally”. An interview on Syria with Joseph Daher.

Note from the LeftEast editors: The following interview was conducted with the Syrian revolutionary Joseph Daher by Italian journalist and activist Mattia Gallo. It provides an important perspective on the current Western intervention in Iraq and Syria that has been excluded from much of the mainstream media reporting of this conflict. We acknowledge that the views expressed here concern a conflict that has lasted over three years and has been especially divisive for the Left in both the Middle East and Europe. We therefore wish to remind our readers that our decision to publish this interview does not reflect an ..