Saturday, April 15, 2017

Turkey referendum: The aspiring Sultan Erdogan and the militant activity of Turkish communists


The referendum which will take place in Turkey on Sunday is certainly a historic and important one. Voters will decide whether to approve constitutional changes that would replace the current parliamentary system with a presidential one. 

When we talk about constitutional changes we actually refer to 18 constitutional reforms which will strengthen the powers of the President thus giving Rejep Tayyip Erdogan a much more advanced status of authority (e.g. declare state of emergency, issue decrees, appoint government ministers, appoint half of the highest judicial body etc). 

Through this referendum Erdogan tries to upgrade his authority by accumulating more and more powers in his hands. A "Yes" vote will transform President Erdogan into a modern Sultan within Turkey's political system. However, behind Tayyip Erdogan's own aspirations, the proposed reforms reflect certain intentions of the country's bourgeoisie to claim a better position for the Turkish capital in the inter-imperialist competitions and plans which are taking place in eastern Mediterranean and the Middle East.

Erdogan and his AKP government are the current political representatives of the most powerful part of Turkey's bourgeois class. Through the consolidation and invigoration of Erdogan's internal power, Turkey's plutocracy aims in strengthening its own strategic presense in the broader region, claiming large shares from the huge energy "pie" in the Middle East and eastern Mediterranean, as well as significant gains in multiple fronts (e.g. in Cyprus, the Kurdish Issue, Syria, the  "war against terrorism", etc).

Taking into account the above, it becomes clear that the proposed constitutional reforms consist part of Turkey's intra-bourgeois processes which are taking place within the framework of the general inter-imperialist competitions in the region. No matter the result of the referendum, it is sure that the attack on people's rights and against the working class, will escalate in the coming future. This is why the popular strata of Turkey, the country's working class, must not be entrapped in fighting under the false flags of bourgeois political powers. 

All these days, the Communist Party of Turkey (TKP) unfolded a militant activity, highlighting  the need to reject the reforms from the perspective of people's interests. Despite the numerous obstacles by the authorities (such as the ban of the TKP rally by the Governorship of Istanbul), the communists of the TKP defied the difficulties, headed into the streets and raised the voice of "Hayir" (No!). 

Nonetheless, the "No" vote supported by the TKP is not the same as the "No" promoted by the bourgeois opposition: for the communists a "No" to the referendum must be accompanied by the fight against the capitalist system itself in order to open new channels of struggle for the revolutionary, working-class movement. 

On Monday, regardless of the referendum's result, the class-struggle will continue. The working people of Turkey, under the continuous, militant guidance of the communists, must raise their own flag of struggle against the major enemy: the exploitative capitalist system which gives birth to poverty, inequality, authoritarianism and wars. 

Boyun Eğme!