KCK’s Bayik: It is not about a state, it is about freedom

“In the past, nobody defended the Kurdish people. Nobody knew the Kurds, nobody saw their struggle, there was no support. Through their resistance they are now present in the world. They have become a hope.”

The co-chair of the Executive Council of the Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK), Cemil Bayik spoke about the worldwide protest movements and the situation in Syria in a special broadcast on Stêrk TV. We publish the second part of his contribution.

In the Syrian war Russia and Iran support the Syrian regime. On the other side there are the US and the forces of the international anti-ISIS coalition. On the other hand, the autonomous administration of North and East Syria adopts a third line. How will these forces deal with each other in the future?

True, there are contradictions between these forces, but not on every issue. They are trying to impose their respective plans and interests on each other. The contradictions between the US and Russia are no longer as they were during the Cold War. There were different sides then. Whoever was on one side was automatically against the other. These were immense contradictions that could have led to a mutual war of annihilation. After the dissolution of the Soviet Union, not much of it remained. What are the current contradictions? It is now a question of who is developing and who is taking up more space in the Middle East and in Syria.

The forces of democratic autonomy in northern Syria have not sided with either Russia or the US since the beginning of the Syrian war until today. In accordance with their policy of the third way, they have entered into relations with both powers and developed their struggle which has indeed led to many achievements. The third way is the right one. It allows the peoples to defend their achievements. In the prevailing chaos, the Turkish state has seen an opportunity to carry out its policy of annihilation. It wants to occupy Rojava and the whole of north-east Syria. Erdoğan has said himself that he wants to go as far as Iraq. There is resistance against this occupation. It remains to be seen what influence occupation and resistance will have on the Middle East.

Turkey has invaded Syria, but it has not done so with its own forces. The US and Russia have allowed and encouraged the occupation. Turkey wanted to invade Syria in order to prevent a status for the Kurds and destroy their achievements. It wanted to prevent a democratic system from being established in Syria that could affect Turkey. On the other hand, it wanted to have an influence in the Syrian war. Their goal is the creation of a new Ottoman Empire. The US and Russia of course use Turkey for their own interests. They have wanted Turkey to weaken the Kurds and to make them dependent on them. They have realized that without the Kurds they will not achieve the desired results in the Middle East.

The Kurds are a fundamental force in the Middle East now. Whoever has this force on his side can achieve results in the Middle East. This is why both the US and Russia wanted Turkey to invade Syria. On the one hand, they wanted to enforce their own interests through Turkey. Seeing that there is a revolution and guerrillas there, giving hope to the people, and that they produce solutions and explain this to peoples, they wanted to stop this and inflict a blow on revolution. The US and Russia are acting together against the peoples and socialism. Turkey balances between them and profits from the contradictions between the US and Russia. It uses NATO and the EU for its own benefit and sees them as an opportunity. In this way, it eventually aims both to achieve its Ottoman goal and to destroy the Kurds and restrain a democratic system.

It has been assumed that the Kurds and the Syrian Democratic Forces (SDF) would capitulate in Serêkaniyê (Ras al-Ain) and Girê Spî (Tal Abyad). However, there has been great resistance, which has weakened Turkey and led to the obvious reality becoming visible. Everyone has seen the reality of the US, Russia, Turkey and the mercenaries. The reality of the Kurds and Rojava has also been seen. That is why the US and Turkey are straitened. To get out of this weak position, they have formed an alliance. They wanted to weaken the resistance of Rojava, which, however, is supported by peoples all over the world. Russia and Turkey have also formed an alliance against the peoples, the socialist movements, against Rojava and the Kurds.

Talks are taking place between the Syrian regime and the autonomous administration. What is the KCK's position on these talks?

The Autonomous Administration has never talked about creating a separate state and dividing Syria. It has always declared that it is part of Syria and called for a democratic solution to the existing problems. It has therefore always wanted to hold talks with the Syrian Government. This is also the right way forward, because they are not interested in their own state, but in freedom. What is essential is a free society in which they can live with their own will, own identity, culture and values. We do not know what fundamental issues are discussed in the talks, but the autonomous administration wants to solve the problems within Syria. And we think this is the right approach.

There is a lively diplomatic exchange between the states for their own interests. Can we say that the peoples have also been successful in the diplomatic field at this time?

As you know, November 1 was declared World Kobanê Day earlier. This year, 2 November has been declared World Rojava Day against the occupation of Serêkaniyê and Girê Spî. On this day, the resistance in Northern and Eastern Syria became the resistance of the peoples of the Middle East and the world. This resistance has made the reality of the Turkish state and the actions of Russia and the US visible to the world. It has also made visible how the resistance of the Kurdish people has developed, how much the Kurds are in love with freedom and how much they base on fundamental fraternity and a democratic life. Everyone has seen that this resistance is not only for the Kurds but for humanity worldwide. The resistance has strengthened the links between the peoples.

In the same way, the inner Kurdish unity has been strengthened. The resistance has been like a wake-up call for the Kurds, the peoples of the region, the imprisoned peoples and the people who are fighting for freedom and democracy. It has shown that there can be an alternative to the capitalist system and that democratic confederalism is that alternative. It can develop further and become an even greater alternative. In this respect, the resistance has produced a great benefit both for the Kurdish people and for the peoples who want democracy and freedom.

In the past, nobody defended the Kurdish people. Nobody knew the Kurds, nobody saw their struggle, there was no support. Through their resistance they are now present all over the world. They have become a hope. Also many academics have publicly declared their support for the Kurdish people and their struggle. For the Kurds, this is a big gain in diplomatic field. Never before have so many people around the world stood up for the Kurdish people.