Last Updated on Sunday, 24 October 2010 22:19
Sunday, 24 October 2010 22:05
It has been said that “today’s terrorist is tomorrow’s hero”. People like Nelson Mandela who is regarded as a secular saint of our modern time, was labelled as a terrorist while he was fighting against the established rule, the Apartheid Regime in South Africa. Yasser Arafat who won the noble peace prize was regarded as a terrorist too. I neither intend to centre my argument on what terrorism is, nor I would seek to provide a definition of the appellations of such a kind, on the account of the fact that there is not a clear definition of such a convoluted term; what I would be expected of outlying is that, terrorism is a pejorative title with negative connotation that is overwhelmingly applied to one’s enemy or adversaries intended to darken their public image.
The decision to call an agent/group as a “terrorist” is completely subjective depending on the relation you maintain with them. Provided you stay in hostility with the groups, by availing of terrorist appellation, you would seek to weaken their position and distort their public image. The best example of this is Nelson Mandela; he was seen as an unwanted agent of anti-fascism, thus classified as terrorist, and now world widely revered as a hero. Nonetheless if you hold some certain positive degree of relationship with the agent/group/ country, no matter how grossly they violate human rights, no matter what sorts of crimes they commit against humanity, they are deemed as friends and are given hands in their conducts. The most conspicuous example of this is the modern Turkey, the biggest importer of the US’s armaments, committing crimes of genocidle character against the Kurds.
One third of Turkey’s population is Kurdish, nonetheless, the Kurds do not exist in the eyes of Turkish Authorities; the use of Kurdish language is prohibited in public and there is no education on the mother tongue. More than 40,000 people have died, mainly from the Kurdish side, as the direct result of Turkish state terror, sponsored by the US as well as some European Powers, yet Turkey is categorised as a democratic and the Kurds are deemed as “terrorists”. Within the course of last few days, over 150 Kurdish politicians and civil activists in Turkey stood trial for the charge of “terrorism”. They are labelled as terrorist since they struggle against Turkish state terror, they struggle against brutal military regime which bans the use of their mother tongue, imprisons their children, silence their voices in every aspect of their lives, use chemical weapons in its bloody war to eradicate the Kurdish resistance movement.
The Kurdish defendants are accused of being terrorists today; what they would be called tomorrow?
The Kurdish defendants standing on trial for the recognition of their identify refusing to speak Turkish even on the dock, are neither today’s terrorists nor tomorrow’s hero... they are our “today’s hero”... Our today’s hero, because they stood up to the Turkish state terror and refused to obey the rules denying the Kurdish voice. They stood up to the fascist policies of the Turkish military regime which has imprisoned around 2,660 Kurdish children charged with “terrorist activities”.
The Kurdish defendants are neither today’s terrorists nor today’s hero. They are our “today’s hero” because they stood up to the fascist mentality which has long sough to annihilate our existence. They have more that 70% of the Kurdish population votes and the Kurds will stand firm behind them in their battle against the neo-fascist mentality which has endangered the prospect of peaceful coexistence among the Kurds and the Turks. The Kurds will stand firm behind them since they are neither today’s terrorist nor tomorrow’s hero, they are our today’s hero!
Kardo Bokani is Kurdish student of political philosophy, doing his master in University College Cork. He can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org