Thursday, January 13, 2011

Democratic solution to the Kurdish question in Turkey by BDP

BDP 11/01/2011 (Democratic Autonomy Project)

A- Reform in Turkey's Political-Administrative Structure and Model of Solution to the Kurdish Question

The Republic proclaimed after a joint struggle waged by the People of Anatolia in 1920’s, has not been able to acquire a democratic quality in spite of the eighty-four years that have passed.
The centralist system of nation state, while engendering the ignorance of cultural differences, has given rise to major discrepancies rendering the social and economic problems and demands for freedom and equality of all social segments in Turkey deadlocked.

In essence, the administrative conception that ignores cultural differences particularly that of Kurdish people and yet that adopts the elimination of cultures through assimilation as official ideology, is devoid of providing solutions to any specific social problem. The current practices that aim at the imposition of uniformity on society through a monolithic understanding of state administration do not respond to social needs. Rather, they stand as the primary cause of prevailing problems and crises. The political and administrative mechanism of the nation state, organized as a rigid, centralist entity, corresponds a fortiori to an oligarchic structure rather than a Democratic Republic. The expression in the Preamble to the 1982 Turkish Constitution that qualifies the Republic as essentially a social, democratic, secular state, governed by the rule of law, has never been effectuated throughout the course of the republic. It is beyond dispute that the discursive non-ethnic (civic) understanding of Turkish nationalism apart, the military, administrative and judicial organization of the state has, in fact, been fundamentally established on an overwhelming conception of Turkish ethnicity.

The process of nation state building, initiated with the Treaty of Westphalia, has been fabricated on the generation of the uniform citizen and a cultural structure based upon such conception of the individual. This system has induced an extermination of the cultures outside the dominant culture; thereby paving the way for an incredible massacre of cultures. Again, during this period, the world has experienced two world wars and thousands of regional and local wars. Eventually, this process of nation state building has ascended to the level of Hitler fascism. In the aftermath of the Second World War, upon experience of the dangerous course of history, several European countries have adapted themselves to the federal administrative structure; hence, the European Union has emerged as the culmination of this orientation. The administrative structure of the United States has also been predicated upon an attempt to thwart this dangerous possibility. Nevertheless, states such as France are still tackling ongoing problems due to their insufficient perception of the issue.

Yet, even in countries such as France, which is presented as the most powerful model of nation state based on ethnicity, the eventual recognition of the impossibility of carrying along with the existing nation state system has led to the abolition of barriers to free self-expression of different languages and cultures, which took effect with accompanying legal changes acting as a bulwark. ‘Dixion Language Law’ has granted the Corsican, Basque, Breton and Alsace languages the right to education, broadcasting and such. Likewise, autonomy in several degrees has been granted to the Sardinian, German, French and Slovene languages in Italy, the Slovene, Croatian, Czech, Hungarian and Sorab languages in Austria, the Spanish language in the USA, the Swedish language in Finland and Turkish in Greece. Contemporary Iraq also signifies one of the disastrous consequences of the centralist nation state system. It is revealed without doubt today that the Saddam regime which was established on the basis of Arab nationalism stands as the major cause of the violent ethnic clashes taking place in Iraqi geography. The persistence of the system of administration based on a centralist conception of the nation rather than the organization differences around a democratic conception of the nation has reduced Iraq to its current state of affairs.

The rest of the article can be found here Democratic Solution to the Kurdish Question or here.

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Turkey's Kurds & Cyprus' tCypriots

As either unitary state or federation solutions are discussed as replacements to Cyprus' 1960 and Turkey's 1923 unworkable constitutions, should we abide by "if a right is a right too many for Turkey's Kurdish community (circa 23% of population) then that right is a right too many for Cyprus' tCypriot community too (circa 15%), and vice versa." Is the adoption of this fair logic the catalyst to securing just solutions for both UN countries.