Following the protests in Turkey.
Istanbul following a week of protests that have rocked the country.
If anyone was expecting a conciliatory tone, they were disappointed.
Addressing a crowd of his supporters, Erdogan said “These protests that are bordering on illegality must come to an end as of now.”
Referring to the thousands of protestors in Istanbul’s central Taksim Square, Erdogan’s supporters chanted “Let us go, let’s crush Taksim.”
There is now a serious threat of violence directed against the peaceful protests in which our brothers and sisters in the Turkish trade union movement are playing such an important role.
LabourStart’s campaign, launched at the request of the International Trade Union Confederation (ITUC) and the Turkish trade union confederation DISK, has gotten unprecedented levels of support. We have already sent over 14,300 messages to Erdogan.
Global unions such as IndustriALL and the IUF have strongly supported our campaign.
But we must intensify our campaign — and today, every minute matters.
“When people leave their jobs, they gather in squares and in their districts,” he wrote in online correspondence with Labor Notes. “At 9:00 pm, in all İstanbul and Turkey, people go out to streets and chant slogans, and in all districts ten thousands of people march against government. Chants include “shoulder to shoulder against fascism,” “government resign,” and “resisting workers will win.”
Participation by union members is high, Korkmaz reported.http://www.labornotes.org/2013/06/turkish-unions-strike-joining-mass-protests
Yes, this is a rebellion, the revolt of a whole people against an oppressive government that has overseen processes of brutal capitalist exploitation over a full decade.
Read below the full report.
On the other hand, the movement itself is extremely heterogeneous both in class terms and in ideological-political orientation. In class composition, one can easily assert that this is a multi-class movement, with the modern sections of the petty-bourgeoisie totally immersed in a Western life style, the intelligentsia, the upper echelons of the proletariat and the youth in the forefront. The working-class proper is not oblivious to the movement, but has not yet either thrown its organized weight behind the movement or put forth its specific class demands.
Ideologically and politically three broad tendencies may be discerned, with infinite variations in each category. There is the ecological sensibility, unfortunately marred by the left liberalism (in the European sense of the term “liberal”) of great parts of the left in Turkey, which makes them easy prey to the machinations of what they would consider as the “democratic” and “civilized” wing of the bourgeoisie. There is, secondly, a very strong, one would even say dominant, Turkish nationalist tendency, ranging from the CHP through myriad Kemalist associations to the ex-Maoist, Kemalist, quasi-fascistic Labour Party. And, of course, there is the motley collection of Turkish socialist and revolutionary forces, skilled and seasoned in street fighting, but lacking in political acumen or programmatic horizon.
The aspirations of the three tendencies are very different from each other. For the ecological cum left liberal tendency, the great dream is Turkey’s accession to the European Union. So any deal that makes TUSIAD happy would possibly leave them satisfied as well. The nationalist tendency is divided between Atlanticism and a pro-EU stance, on the one hand, and a Eurasian orientation, on the other. However, both of these sub-currents are united against the creeping Islamization that the AKP has been carrying out successfully over a decade. They are all “republicans,” i.e. they defend Kemal Ataturk’s principles and wish well to the pro-Western wing of the bourgeoisie, that is, the wing represented again by TUSIAD. (The contradiction that the reader may sense in two very different tendencies represented by the left liberals and the nationalists in their common support for TUSIAD is a contradiction that exists in real life!)