The Turkish Bourgeoisie’s Campaign, the Bankruptcy of Kurdish Nationalism and the Continuation of the Bloodbath in Syria

The publication of images of bloodbaths in Syria have once again shaken human hearts and shamed the human conscience. The sight of a young woman, whose two young children have been beaten to a pulp and are crying with bloodied faces, has sparked anger and hatred on social media. These images once again present a true picture of the barbarism flowing out of North-east Syria, barbarism that words cannot describe. Living in North-east Syria means war, missiles, air strikes, suicide bombings, brutal massacres, starvation, misery, civilian shootings and a real hell on earth of which human beings cannot speak.


Following Trump’s agreement with Erdogan over the creation of a security belt, US forces withdrew from North-east Syria on 7 October 2019, paving the way for Turkish operations. Importantly, Trump first announced that Turkey would soon launch operations in Northern Syria. On 9 October 2019, the Turkish Army, backed by pro-Turkish Syrian forces, launched a land and air campaign. At the same time, the US Department of Defence announced that US forces would neither support such an operation and nor participate in it, in other words, giving the green light to Turkey. Subsequently, Kurdish nationalism declared that America had stabbed us in the back.

Internationalists have been saying for centuries that, with the advent of capitalism in its decadent era, national movements have associated themselves with imperialist policy gangsters, while the National Liberation Army is an infantry force motivated by imperialist strife. National movements are poison to the development of the class struggle and a barrier to advances in the direction of communist revolution [1]. Kurdish nationalists, like other nationalists, have come to embrace the foreign policy of the gangsters involved imperialist disputes, in turn leading the “Kurdish” working class to imperialist slaughter. The Shah of Iran stabbed the Iraqi Kurds in the back, Syria has stabbed Turkish Kurds in the back, Turkey has stabbed Syrian Kurds in the back, the US has stabbed Syrian Kurds in the back, and the list goes on.

Kino Gabriel, spokesman for the “Syrian democratic forces”, concerning imperialist agreements and a possible Turkish invasion, which would be the final death blow for the Syrian Kurds dealt by the US, says:

The US had previously assured that it would not allow the Turkish military to operate in the area … The US statement was unexpected and we can say that it was a stab in the back for the Syrian democratic forces.” [2]

Following the withdrawal of US troops from North-east Syria, Kurdish forces called on the US to prevent Turkish fighter strikes, at least by creating a no-fly zone, similar to what the US imposed in Northern Iraq in 1991. It was because of such “protections” that the US received the nickname “Father of the Kurds”. But Trump apparently commanded his troops not to intervene in the conflict, in other words, nationalism has already played out its role.

Trump, when discussing the withdrawal of troops from North-east Syria, he said it was time for the US to give up on “stupid endless wars” in the region. Trump said that the US has spent $8 trillion on Middle Eastern wars and that the US should never have been in the region. Regarding the abandonment of Syrian Kurds in the face of Turkish attacks, Trump responded:

They didn’t help us in the Second World War, they didn’t help us with Normandy as an example… that they battled alongside U.S. forces for their land, and adds.” [3]

By abandoning the Kurds, Trump has raised concerns among current and potential US allies. When he was asked by a journalist whether he thought he was sending a weak message to other potential US allies by dropping the Kurds, Trump replied:

It is easy to get together… It is not difficult for America to find a new ally and the US allies have used us a lot.” [4]

Trump went even further than that and, in light of the balance of military forces between the parties involved, he advised the Kurds to withdraw 30 kilometres from the Turkish border, saying:

“If you don’t have a plane, it’s hard to beat a force that is a warplane.”

With the outbreak of the Syrian war, Kurdish nationalism has played a pivotal role on behalf of the US military and the Kurdish bourgeoisie, and brought the Kurdish working class to the slaughterhouse – something that Kurdish nationalism had previously done in Iraq, Iran and Turkey in other forms. Kurdish nationalism did its job as an infantryman, succeeded in mobilizing the working class to fight wars using nationalist ideology and slaughtered the working class. The left of capital told epic stories about the massacre of workers, known as Cuban and Rojava Canton resistance, and even spoke of the power of the will of the people, of self-government and of a quasi-Soviet rule within that resistance. The left of capital was so obscene that it compared the Paris commune to the Rojava commune, and the Kurdish Peshmerga to the Communards. In one of the last comparisons, we read:

I remembered, involuntarily, the hills of Père Lachaise outside Paris, and I thought of the killing and suppression of Libertarians by the alien army of Bismarck and Napoleon, two long-time and warring enemies, who fought against the Communards and the Commune, just like Turkey, Russia and Syria. Yes comrades, today, we all are Kurds and Rojavai.” [5]

With the collapse of the Eastern bloc and the emergence of a new world order, both big and small gangs have waged wars with humanitarian rhetoric. They have mobilized the working class to face imperialist slaughter with beautiful phrases such as “humanitarian operations”, “for world peace” and “the fight against terrorism”. The lies and hypocrisy from the world’s peacekeepers about their philanthropy are revealed when no part of the working class in these countries is saved from the bourgeoisie’s attacks. The Western bourgeoisie has imposed the toughest austerity on the Western working class. Turkish gangsters are no exception. Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has referred to his operation as the “Peace Spring”. In the name of peace and pan-Turkism, another imperialist slaughter is to be carried out in the interests of the Turkish bourgeoisie.

The Turkish bourgeoisie intends to advance towards its 480-kilometer border with Syria up to a depth of 32 kilometres. Following the influx of EU refugees in 2015, in an agreement between the EU and Turkey, the EU will help Turkey with $6 billion to resettle about 3.5 million Syrian refugees and prevent them from flooding into Europe. Turkey plans for a big part of these 3.5 million Syrian refugees who are living in Turkey to move to this area. Turkey intends to alter the population composition of the region to the benefit of the Arabs and other ethnic minorities, on the one hand, to prepare the ground for weakening Kurdish forces and, on the other hand, to increase its influence in the region. Saddam had earlier implemented such a policy in Northern Iraq.

The Turkish campaign has also come under criticism from bourgeois institutions which have accused Turkey of violating Syrian sovereignty. But Erdogan has appeared in the form of a saviour full of obscenity and shame, saying that operationalizing the fountain of peace not only violates the territorial integrity of Syria, but also seeks to rescue the people of the region from the clutches of terrorism:

We will save the people of this region from the grip of terrorism.” [6]

Iranian gangsters have stated their opposition to the Turkish campaign, insisting that the Adana Agreement is a good basis for resolving the problem, which brings us back to the fact that the Turkish campaign is in the interests of the Iranian bourgeoisie. The Adana Agreement was signed on 20 October 1998 between Turkey and Syria and put an end to the disputes between the two countries. Iran and Egypt monitored the deal. According to the agreement, both sides considered the Kurdish forces to be terrorists and demanded an end to their opposition to each other. Further, Turkey was allowed to enter Syrian territory to a depth of five kilometres in order to confront the PKK’s Kurdish forces. Following this, Syria considered the PKK as a terrorist organization, dismantling its camps and expelling its activists from the country. Although the Iranian bourgeoisie has declared its opposition to the campaign, it nevertheless favours Iran, Syria and Russia. Syria’s north-eastern region was overthrown years ago and, thanks to the Turkish occupation, the likelihood of the Euphrates returning to Damascus was made greater. Assad’s rule over Syria is one of the fundamental aspirations of the Syrians, Iranians and Russians, which is apparently being realized.

As part of the Assad regime’s exercise of sovereignty over the whole of Syria, including the Eastern Euphrates, Syria’s Deputy Foreign Minister Faisal Moqaddad stated the US had played the Kurds, but that the Syrian government wanted the Kurds to return to Syria.

After the US abandoned the Kurds in Syria in the face of the Turkish military threat, the government welcomes the return of the Kurds to Syria.” [7]

Some countries have offered to condemn Turkey’s operations in Syria before the UN Security Council, but Russia and the US have vetoed such a declaration and issued no statement opposing the Turkish campaign. Russia and the US vetoed the declaration out of different imperialist interests. The US is a NATO member and Turkey is a close friend of the US. About 50 US nuclear bombs are sited at the Incirlik Air Base, which is on Turkish soil. Russia, however, vetoed a statement, also out of its imperialist interests, as it had previously stated that it wanted the “democratic forces of Syria” to surrender to the Syrian regime, Assad’s rule to be applied throughout Syria and the Syrian regime to defend its sovereignty. In practice, Kurdish nationalism prefers the Syrian regime to the Turkish occupation.

Nationalism, even in its most radical form, dislodges workers from class identity and turns them into patriotic soldiers to rise up in defence of the capitalist homeland. Nationalist movements become imperialistic once they gain state power; no nation can accumulate capital in absolute isolation. This means that the new states created by national movements will themselves become imperialist countries, regardless of their size or economic power.

Blood, filth and sludge fall from head to toe of the cruel capitalist system. As long as capitalism continues its shameful life, humans will be displaced from the four corners of this globe. Capitalism is the source of all the misery and troubles, not only for the working class, but for the whole of humanity. Our interests are in the class struggle; the spectre of the class struggle is what the bourgeoisie fears most. For, in its evolutionary process, it will lead to the revolutionary destruction of the capitalist state. Independent working-class struggle, class struggle or class war, internationally, from Africa to Europe, from Asia to America, is the only alternative for the working class. The working class in the world bears a great responsibility in the absence of the intervention of the Syrian working class. Instead of being cannon fodder in the gangsters’ war, instead of continuing barbarism, instead of adhering to the filthy capitalist system, we must strive towards communist revolution and end the viciousness and wretchedness of capitalism.

Down with the war!

Down with capitalism!

Long live the class struggle from Rojava to New York, from Ankara to London!


Firoz Aakbary

17 October 2019



[1] For more information on the subject, see the pamphlet “Nationalism is a deadly poison for the class struggle” published by the Internationalist Voice.



[4] As above




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