Abdullah Öcalan

From Wikiquote
Jump to navigation Jump to search
Öcalan on trial in 1999
Violence has become unnecessary. In fact things have got to the point where violence cannot be afforded.

Abdullah "Apo" Öcalan (born April 4, 1949) is the founding leader of the Kurdish militant group Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK), which is an organisation fighting for a socialist Independent Kurdistan and the rights of the Kurdish People. It is based on a guerilla system.

Quotes[edit]

Flag of Kurdistan.svg
Flag of Kurdistan Workers' Party.svg
States only administrate, while democracies govern.
YPJ-fighters.jpg
The social subjugation of woman was the vilest counter-revolution ever carried out.
  • The right of self-determination of the peoples includes the right to a state of their own. However, the foundation of a state does not increase the freedom of a people. The system of the United Nations that is based on nation-states has remained inefficient. Meanwhile, nation-states have become serious obstacles for any social development. Democratic confederalism is the contrasting paradigm of the oppressed people. Democratic confederalism is a non-state social paradigm. It is not controlled by a state. At the same time, democratic confederalism is the cultural organizational blueprint of a democratic nation. Democratic confederalism is based on grassroots participation. Its decision-making processes lie with the communities. Higher levels only serve the coordination and implementation of the will of the communities that send their delegates to the general assemblies. For limited space of time they are both mouthpiece and executive institution. However, the basic power of decision rests with the local grassroots institutions.
  • Every ideology and mode of belief can, if true, implement itself by using the resources of technology and above all those of the media without having to resort to violence. In other words, violence has become unnecessary. In fact things have got to the point where violence cannot be afforded. The rich variety of institutions and practices the democratic system offers is built on this social and scientific-technological development, and whatever problem it tackles, it offers a certain solution. It itself is the solution.
    To go through the examples, the solution to religious wars is secularism. Here the standard and the implementation involve taking the approach that everyone is free to follow their religious beliefs and democratic criteria will apply to all of them. Democracy offers definite freedom of belief and this is the antidote to religious wars.
    Again the same applies to the fields of thought and ideology. There is freedom of thought and conviction. It is allowed to work as one wants and implement one's beliefs as long as one does not infringe the rights of others in this respect. This also applies to political ideas and their expression in the form of parties. As long as it adheres to the democratic system and its state structure, every party can offer a solution without resorting to violence. There is no question here of either imposing a religion by force or breaking and shattering the structure of the state. Religion, thought and the parties based on them know to meet the standards of the democratic system of the state because they are based on them. If they don't know how to do this, then democracy gets the right to defend itself.
    It is clear here that regardless of the social group they are based on (which might be a nation or an ethnic or religious group), beliefs, ideas and the parties through which they are expressed cannot, in the name of these beliefs and ideas, force the limits on which the state is based. There is no need for this, because it will render the problem they claim to be solving even worse. Consequently, there is no need for it, and, in any case, there are solutions within the system. These are the democratic rights of those groups. They are their freedoms of belief and thought. They are the parties. They are all types of coalitions. In the area of language and culture, the democratic solution is even more striking. This is the area where the greatest successes have been achieved. Because the intermingling of language and culture, these values that many national groups have assimilated together for centuries, do not want to separate and get weak and monotonous, but prefer to stay together to get enriched and achieve variety, strength and life. And the school and laboratory for this is democracy and its implementation with conviction.
    Democracy is almost a garden of language and culture. The most developed and powerful principles of our day once again express this clearly. All European countries and North America are clear proofs of it. The attempt to suppress new religious, linguistic, cultural, intellectual and political developments during past centuries was the cause of all major wars, and resistance against suppression gave to wars which could be seen as understandable. Particularly in European countries this experience led to the development of a determined democracy in the wake of all these wars and led to the supremacy of the West. Western civilisation can, in this sense, be termed democratic civilisation. The democratic system is at least as important as scientific and technological superiority. Feeding off each other, they both became strong and achieved the status of world civilisation.
  • For peace and brotherhood at the axis of a democratic republic, I am ready to serve the Turkish State, and I believe that for this end I must remain alive.
  • Even if 100,000 people die this year, our movement cannot be disrupted - 1992 [1]

The Political Thought of Abdullah Ocalan (2017)[edit]

War and Peace in Kurdistan[edit]

  • Hegemonic powers often use assimilation as a tool when they are confronted with defiant ethnic groups. Language and culture are also carriers of potential resistance, which can be desiccated by assimilation. banning the native language and enforcing the use of a foreign language are effective tools. People who are no longer able to speak their native language will no longer cherish its characteristic, which are rooted in ethnic, geographic and cultural factors. Without the unifying element of language the uniting quality of collective ideas also disappear.
    • p.10
  • The hegemonic powers also used religion and nationalism to preserve their supremacy. In all parts of Kurdistan, Islam is a state religion used as a tool for controlling the population. Even if these regimes embrace secularism, the entanglement of political and religious institutions is obvious.
    • p.11
  • Under the flag of 'superior Turkey identity' the entire society was sworn to an aggressive nationalism.
  • p. 13

Democratic Confederalism[edit]

  • Assuming that we would compare the nation-state to a living god, then nationalism would be the correspondent religion. In spite of some seemingly positive elements, nation-state and nationalism show metaphysical characteristics. In this context, capitalist profit and the accumulation of capital appear as categories shrouded in mystery. There is a network of contradictory relations behind these terms that is based on force and exploitation. Their hegemonic striving for power serves the maximatsation of profits. In this sense, nationalism appears as a quasi-religious justification. It's true mission, however, is its service to the virtually divine nation-state and its ideological vision which pervades all areas of the society. Arts, science and social awareness: none of them is independent. A true intellectual enlightenment there fore needs a fundamental analysis of these elements of modernity.
    • Nationalism.
  • For more than thirty years the Kurdistan Workers' Party (PKK) has been struggling for the legitimate rights of the Kurdish people. Our struggle, our fight for liberation turned the Kurdish question into an international issue which affected the entire Middle East into an international issue which affected the entire Middle East and brought a solution to the Kurdish question into reach.
  • With the sedentarisation of people they began to form an idea of the area that they lived in, its extension and its boundaries, which were mostly determined by nature and the feature of the landscape. Clans and tribes that had settled in a certain area and lived there for a long period of time.
  • The national question is not a phantasm of capitalist modernity. Nevertheless it was capitalist modernity which imposed the national question on society. The national society replaced religious community. However, the transition to a national society needs to overcome capitalist modernity if the nation is not to remain a disguise for repressive monopolies.
  • Iranian society is multi-ethnic and multi-religious and blessed with a rich culture. All the national and religious identities of the Middle East can be found there. This diversity is in contrast to the hegemonic claim of the theocracy, which cultivates a subtle religious and ethnic nationalism; the ruling class does not shrink back from anti-modernist propaganda whenever it serves their interests, although they implement capitalist modernity.
    • The Political Thought of Abdullah Ocalan, p.52
  • Another ideological pillar of the nation-state is the sexism that pervades entire societies. Many civilized systems have employed sexism in order to preserve their own power. They enforced women's exploitation and used them as a valuable reservoir of cheap labor. Women are also regarded as a valuable resource in so far as they produce offspring and allow the reproudction of men. They, a woman is both a sexual object and a commodity. She is a tool for the preservation of male power and can at best advance to become an accessory of the patriarchal male society.
    • p. 37
  • States only administrate, while democracies govern.
    • p. 39
  • Democratic confederalism is open towards other politcal groups and factions. It is flexible, multicultal, anti-monopolistic and consensus-oriented. Ecology and feminism are central pillars.
    • p 39-40
  • Neither total rejection nor complete recognition of the state is useful for the democratic efforts of civil society. The overcoming of the state, particularly the nation-state, is a long-term process.
    • p. 46
  • The national question is not a phantasm of capitalist modernity. Nevertheless it was capitalist modernity which imposed the national question on society. The national society replaced religious community. However, the transition to a national society needs to overcome capitalist modernity if the nation is not to remain a disguise for repressive monopolies.
    • p. 47

Principles of Democratic Confederalism[edit]

  • 1. The right of determination of the people includes the right to a state of their own. However, the foundation of a state does not increase the freedom of a people. The system of the United nations that is based on nation-states has remained inefficient social development. Democratic confederalism is the contrasting paradigm of the oppressed people.
  • 2. Democratic confederalism is a non-state social paradigm. It is not controlled by a state. At the same time, democratic confederalism is the organisation of democracy and culture.
  • 3. Democratic confederalism is based on grass roots participation. Its decision-making process lie with the communities. Higher levels only serve the coordination and implementation of the will of the communities that send their delegates to the general assemblies. For one year that send their delegates to the general assemblies. For one year they are both mouthpiece and executive institutions. However, the basic decision-making power rests with the local grassroots institutions.

Liberating Life: Women's Revolution[edit]

When the woman marries, she is in fact enslaved. It is impossible to imagine another institution that enslaves like marriage.
  • Without an analysis of women's status in the hierarchical system and the conditions under which she was enslaved, neither the state nor the class-based system that it rests upon can be understood.
    • p. 69
  • Gender discrimination has had a twofold destructive effect on society. Firstly, it has opened society to slavery; second, all other forms of enslavement have been implemented on the basis of housewifisation
    • p.69
  • Superiority of existence and ideology cannot easily be broken. The youth (and even the children) are subjected to the same strategies and tactics, ideological and political propaganda, and oppressive systems as the woman - adolescence, like femininity, is not a physical but social fact.
  • Sexism, just as nationalism, is an ideology through which power is generated and nation-states are built. Sexism is not a function of biological differences.
    • pp.72
  • The social subjugation of woman was the vilest counter-revolution ever carried out.
  • The most important problem for freedom in a social context is thus family and marriage. When the woman marries, she is in fact enslaved. It is impossible to imagine another institution that enslaves like marriage. The most profound slaveries are established by the institution of marriage, slaveries that become more entrenched within the family.
  • Family is not a social institution that should be overthrown. But is should be transformed. The claim of ownership over women and children, handed down from the hierarchy, should be abandoned.
    • pp. 79
  • There can be no respect for a family that is established on ignorance. In the construction of a democratic civilization, the role of the family is vital.
    • pp.80
  • A realistic definition of capitalism should not present it as a constant, created and characterized by unicentral thought and action. It is , in essence, the result of the actions of opportunist individuals and groups who established themselves into openings and cracks within society a the potential for surplus product developed; these actions became systemaised as they nibbled away at the surplus product.
    • pp. 82

External links[edit]

Wikipedia
Wikipedia has an article about: