Turkish Armed Forces (TSK) carried out a military operation against the Garê region with unclear goals. It was analysed that the goals seemingly included capturing a Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) leader, establishing a permanent military presence in the region and rescuing captives that included soldiers and police, who were held safely for years in a cave by PKK. Experts including retired officers agree that these were contradictory objectives and that the operation was a failure.
Erdoğan’s words about giving a gospel [promise] was a sign that he had great expectations like the time when natural gas was found in the Black Sea. That topic was quickly forgotten about with the help of pro-government media. Instead of giving ‘a gospel’, National Defense Minister, Hulusi Akar hastily held a press conference very early in the morning and stated the operation was completed successfully and that the PKK had killed 13 Turkish citizens that they held. (Even the nationalities of the captives were not true, one of the murdered captives was a citizen of Iraqi Kurdistan.)
Even the Turkish opposition parties, who normally support the AKP-Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) coalition’s policies unquestioningly when it comes to the Kurds, Greeks, Armenians or even Americans, have become suspicious about it and have begun to ask questions.
The American administration, which controls air sovereignty in the region and has strong organisation in Iraqi Kurdistan, also initially did not believe or support that statement.
However, we did not see these kind of doubts and questions expressed by democratic parts of Turkish public opininon reflected in the country’s media. On the contrary, we only saw statements approving and confirming the regime’s version of events, they spoke about how ‘it was clear’ that the PKK ‘murdered the captives’ and the PKK was responsible for those deaths.
The bodies of soldiers and police members were brought back to Turkey. Even pro-regime journalists, reported that the bodies of the deceased were not being allowed to be shown to their families and that the families were only allowed to see their faces. And most importantly was the fact that an autopsy report was not released or announced.
Only one state newspaper, Sabah mentioned any report which could be understood that it’s source was the National Intelligence Agency (MİT) or army, and not referring to any doctor or hospital. It read: “The first ground operation to Garê. Autopsy report: They were shot by a weapon with high kinetical energy.”
It can be called a ‘Hulusi Akar Report’, not an autopsy report, because there is seemingly no official autopsy report. There is also no information regarding which doctor gave any report in which hospital, when and under which conditions was any autopsy made. This is not an ‘autopsy report’. It is more like a propaganda document.
Asserting only its own discourse regarding the deaths, Ankara has been silent about Qandil’s claims including the statement that “Chemical weapons were used, let the international organisations come and do independent research.” Ankara are complaining about how they have not receieved the support they expected from the United Nations, European Union and especially the United States. Of course they can not, because they have only disreputable words that they simply repeat unconvincingly.
Akar was so anxious that contrary to custom, he called the American Ambassador in person with an expectation to simply hear the statement, “The PKK is the responsible for deaths.” However, his collegue in Washington, Lloyd Austin just remained silent.
If you accept the official discourse of the state for Garê, then you should accept the discourse for people burned in Cizre, for Kemal Kurkut who was killed in the midst of Diyarbakır (Amed) and for the villagers thrown from a military helicopter. And for the claims that HDP member Dilan Dirayet Demir went to Garê.
Together with believing the official discourse of the state, approving the lies of a regime which says numerous lies achieves nothing. This issue is also not related to any criticisms of the PKK or to the debate that PKK should abandon the method of armed struggle. There is a concrete fact: That 13 young person lost their lives in the cave in mountain. It is essential to question.
The regime tells you “The PKK killed those people by shooting bullets in their heads.”, it does not present any document or any autopsy report. Why do you unquestioningly believe those people who you once did not believe when they said, “Berkin Elvan was an armed terrorist.”, this is the point.
Yes, the armed struggle period should be finish, and yes, Turkey can solve its all problems, especially the Kurdish issue, through peace and democracy. However, it is not possible by saying the PKK should ‘leave the arms’. You should know that leaving arms without any political gains means surrendering for a movement which is organised in three countries and for a people who spent their entire lives for that struggle.
A realistic political solution is only possible through a realistic analysis. The Kurdish Political Movement is a movement that has conducted an armed struggle and has gained significant power in at least three countries. Liking or hating that does not change the facts.
If you wish to ensure peace, tranquility and democracy, you should take that fact into account and act accordingly.
If you consider the votes of HDP as the same thing with the PKK, then you are making a historical mistake.
Because no one should say the word ‘terrorist’ for an armed organisation that is supported by millions of people in the world, but is also a grassroots movement.
The solution is only possible at the negotiation table and a solution is not possible by polarising but only by acting together.