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(en) Organisation Communiste Libertarie - Taksim everywhere Resistance everywhere! "I went to resist, I'll be right back" - 18th day of the uprising by Ali Bektas (fr) [machine translation]
Sun, 16 Jun 2013 12:04:51 +0300
Despite ruthless repression, despite the insults, threats and attempts to division of
power between good and evil, resistance remains strong throughout Turkey as protesters
continue to hold Gezi Park and refuse to obey orders ErdoÄan and ultimatums. ---- The
struggle continues ... ---- In an attempt to learn more: ---- A new text on what is
happening in the park and Gezi Takim site. ---- The call to continue the struggle of
collective Taksim DayaniÅmasi ("Solidarity Taksim") dated June 15 ---- ISTANBUL - The
fight that broke out on May 31 to fight against neoliberal urban renewal - and in
particular the demolition of a park in the center of Istanbul - exceeded its original
goals, and turned into a real uprising against a democratically elected regime
quoiqu'autoritaire. Although it began in Gezi Park, close to the central square of
Istanbul, Taksim Square, the uprising quickly spread across the city and across the country.
Adamant in their determination to stay on the streets, huge crowds are gathered every day
in Ankara and Izmir as well as other smaller cities. Three protesters were killed and four
others are currently in a critical condition. Add to this more than 6,000 injured,
including 10 who have lost eyes. The uprising has dominated the national discourse for
more than two weeks since the country experienced the largest urban uprising and the
longest he had ever seen. It is now considered a political capital awakening for a
generation. On the ground, there is only one term that is used to describe the highly
heterogeneous crowds demonstrated in Turkey for weeks of resistance. Resistance against
the urban development short-sighted resistance against the police and resistance against
the authoritarian regime of Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his AKP (Party of Justice and
Development), in power for over ten years. Almost all relevant Twitter hashtags follow the
order form of resistance, "# DIREN" and multiply by location or topic. The trader leave
notes explaining "I went to resist, I'll be right back" , and one of the most popular
slogans is "Taksim everywhere! Resistance everywhere! "
It is as if all of Taksim, Istanbul's bohemian cultural center and place of major
political events, was part of the resistance and almost everyone walks around with diving
goggles and dust masks for protect themselves from tear gas generously distributed.
The barricades processing
For ten days between June 1 and June 10, all the main roads leading to Taksim Square and
smaller side streets were barricaded in the defense against the police. In some avenues
such as Gumussuyu, where fighting raged at the beginning of the uprising, more than a
dozen barricades were present. Some of them who reached three meters high, were built from
all kinds of urban debris, building materials, destroyed city buses, metal bars cemented
cinder blocks towards the enemy lines, on a surreal medieval fashion. As in other urban
uprisings, barricades isolated area of ââthe state and a space where a whole new set of
social relations, previously unimaginable, could take shape.
On any sign hung between the light poles in the streets leading to Taksim Square and Gezi
Park could have read "This way the City Taksim" . It was perhaps a bit exaggerated, but it
was certainly true in the park itself, where solidarity and mutual aid have become the
norm. Everyone talks about this new life they found in this beautiful space exempt from
the state where cooperation, solidarity and struggle have supplanted the poisoned society
they left behind. Tense discussions that arise between individuals with opposing political
ideologies, or drunks disturb quickly subsided to return to a more sober state of mind.
People saw that social violence was actually reduced by the absence of the police. This is
particularly the case for the participants, for women who are at least half if not more of
those in Gezi Park. Not only the usual verbal harassment and sexual violence in Taksim
were reduced, but women and sexist men have claimed a large space to fight patriarchy up
to work on the songs, slogans and graffiti using a sexist language to attack Erdogan and
For nearly two weeks now, the flags of the PKK (the powerful group of Kurdish guerrillas)
floating in the wind with the flags of the Turkish Republic on Taksim Square. This
previously unimaginable, has been made possible because both the Kurds and the Kemalists,
united against a common enemy, the police and the AKP government. A Kurdish student said
that that was the real peace process, as opposed to opportunistic process established by
ErdoÄan during the past year. It is indicative of the nature of the conflict with the
Kurds that the absence of the State in the streets of Taksim has consolidated a space for
people to talk and really listen to each other.
The first weekend of the barricades saw two mass demonstrations. Saturday, June 8,
football fans of the big three clubs of Istanbul, BeÅiktaÅ, FenerbahÃe and Galatasaray,
converged on the square in a big show of force. These fans, previously at war against each
other, gather today in Istanbul United and provided much of the energy needed for street
fighting. Among them, the ÃarÅÄ ["Bazar", BeÅiktaÅ] shines the most because they are the
most organized, intelligent and with previous experience of intervention in political
situations. But they are decidedly apolitical, in the sense that they do not support any
political party and say their "rebellious spirit" is with the people. In fact, they are
ideologically confused and alternate between nationalist symbols and song Bella Ciao, all
in a sort of left-wing populism macho.
Their participation was crucial because they are very well organized, and have the
experience to work together in stages. It is not surprising that football fans in
Istanbul, which represent a large segment representative of the urban population has been
a great gift for the struggle in defense of the city. The next day, June 9, there was an
even bigger rally in Taksim. According to some estimates, nearly one million people
attended and it was a much stronger character to the left. Many people claim that it could
have been the largest crowd ever seen in Taksim Square, including at gatherings of workers
ErdoÄan and tactics easy propaganda
ErdoÄan's words became more and more ridiculously false as he was clearly in the midst of
the greatest crisis of his government. To defend its police force and try to minimize its
extreme repression, he proclaimed that 17 people were killed by police in the United
States during the Occupy movement. Naturally, the U.S. Embassy quickly denied it. He even
said that many injuries that have overwhelmed a nearby mosque on the third day of the
uprising, had actually got drunk inside. The imam of the mosque quickly denied. His
rhetoric, all filled with lies and equally furious as always, is misplaced as his
administration clearly trying to manage the crisis. At first, he thought he could just
insult those who were in the park, claiming that they were "scum" ( Ãapulcu ) and
"drunkards" for implicitly oppose those who are good, practicing Muslims. Again the park
occupiers showed their spirit and disarmed the government appropriating the term and
everyone began to call Ãapulcu . In addition, the positive atmosphere in the park with its
kitchen, its libraries, its urban gardens, etc.. began to be noticed through social media
and downright one of the leading Turkish media had initially ignored the protests. This
has successfully combat organized propaganda by the Government that the camp was a feeling
cesspool of urine and it became much more clear that there was more than "drunk" in Gezi
Park. This initial tactic backfired.
The following strategy used by the AKP government was to foment division, already rampant
among those they designated as "provocative" [in French in the text] (read: those who
retreat when Police attack), or more generally "marginal groups" (read: small leftist
militant groups) and the so-called "environmental youth trying to save the trees"
(imagine: a clueless and naive teenager green). This is a completely artificial division.
Many kinds of people fought against the police. It is not very clear that it is about
these "marginal groups", but many small leftist groups are part of the Platform of
Solidarity Taksim (who organized the initial settlement of the park) . And no young
ecologist well intentioned but naive can be found in the park. In addition, the initial
movement to save the park was much more innocent than an attempt to save trees: it was, in
fact, a struggle for public space against its encirclement. Although this was an
artificial division, this tactic has been more successful for the government because there
is not exactly a consensus on how to deal with police violence.
Those who have been active in the social movements of the past have probably seen these
tactics to be deployed as part of the operating manual of the State. First, there is an
attempt to discredit those who took to the streets or in business. But if the movement
becomes too popular, the next step is to try to divide by promoting divisions and labeling
some of them as extremists and others as naive simply used as cover. Marginality is
becoming an ever receding horizon that never dies until there is no one to resist.
Take place for the final assault
Tuesday, June 11, the police had to move back to Taksim Square. Obviously, it was a
necessary step before attempting to use the nearby park to those who occupy it. At 7am,
the police entered the room. The barricades were inadequate, with no one behind them to
defend their position at this early hour. Despite this, some of the park and instead
fought against the police as best they could throughout the day. The site has been lost in
time and most of the fighting took place on the main street (now one of the construction
sites that are part of the development of the place desired by ErdoÄan) around the park Gezi .
On several occasions, police fired tear gas into the park, despite numerous promises which
had been given that the park would be left outside the police attack. The amazing
self-organization of the park had already surpassed itself and those who resist have
improved the way they deal with teargas. Realizing that all of Taksim was the place of
resistance, it became clear that revive grenades at the police had little to get rid of
the gas that filled the whole neighborhood. Instead, buckets of water, sand and wet
blankets were distributed through the camp and grenades were quickly extinguished as they
fell to the ground.
The Platform of Solidarity Taksim appealed for people to converge at 19h and tens of
thousands of people began to show within the place that night. Shortly after the site has
been filled, the police decided to disperse the crowd with an incredible amount of tear
gas and water cannons. Fortunately, this completely unprepared and peaceful crowd kept his
cool and new deadly stampede, like the one that took place on 1 May 1977, was not
repeated. People were pushed back a few streets down from the position and continued to
advance towards the police lines, before being repelled with more tear gas and water
cannons. This lasted until about four o'clock in the morning. At one point, the police
entered the park. Hundreds of riot police have destroyed tents and other infrastructure
around the entrance. In response, a large barricade was erected at the entrance of the
park as the first line of defense against the police.
Laughter against fear
The regime of government by fear has faced unprecedented public demonstration of humor.
The streets around Taksim and Beyoglu district adjacent were covered with graffiti early
in the uprising. The content of this huge amount of graffiti took almost everyone by
surprise and it shows the amazing people who took to the streets mind. The humor of the
movement takes nothing from his determination, and instead, gives him spiritual ammunition
to continue. When they do not cry because of the tear gas, people burst into tears
laughing at the next graffiti corner that mocks Erdogan.
The special flavor of the humor comes from a series of weekly satirical magazines dating
back to the period marked by military coups of 1971 and 1980. Faced with an iron fist and
under the military regime, these magazines have developed a way to criticize the
government under the guise of satire. This comic tradition met the cultural elements of
the Web 2.0 era as pieces of popular culture. It should also be noted that most of these
magazines have their offices in Taksim Square and are closely linked to the cultural life
of the streets. This satirical culture developed in the 1990s and 2000s and exploded in
the streets of Istanbul. Most people who follow the events are aware of the many puns and
memes  built on the word used in Turkish for "scum" ( Ãapulcu ) . But "every day I
Capule" is only the tip of the iceberg comic. Unfortunately, many of the other examples
are almost impossible to translate.
A crisis of representation
Each time these days, there seems to be yet another group of artists, intellectuals and
actors, who, encouraged by Erdogan to believe themselves important enough to mediate
between spontaneous masses and government. Despite such a theater of negotiation, the
Prime Minister has continued to pursue the issue of successive threats, noting that his
patience eventually run out.
The frustration of those in power who can not find an officer or representative to
negotiate on and off the movement is obvious. The spontaneous nature and completely
without a leader of those who took to the streets, without any decision-making structure
was perhaps their greatest strength. Now that the fight has exceeded its initial goal of
saving the park, even the Platform for Solidarity Taksim, which can be argued to be the
only group that can try to play a leadership role in the fight, was strongly criticized
for his meeting with the Prime Minister and for accepting a referendum does he seems no
legal basis for the future of the park. That those who are negotiating with the Prime
Minister does not seem to understand is that the situation has now far surpassed the issue
of the park and the government is now faced with the will of those who are in the streets
and not a handful of famous people or political organizations.
Prepare for a final battle
Now that the site has been lost in favor of the police, those in the park waiting for the
final assault and attempt to recover the park. Every night there is a tense situation when
each puts his mask and helmet and wrote his blood on his body. Determination of thousands
standing guard is incredible. They have already lived it and now they joke about tear gas.
Every day, there are statements Istanbul Governor saying that the security person can not
be guaranteed, accompanied by Orwellian tweets noting how good is the atmosphere of the
occupation with the scent of lime and singing birds morning. Even more insulting is the
childish rhetoric of authorities who constantly call the parents of those who occupy the
place they want for their children to go home or they will be injured. In response to
these threats, dozens of mothers have their children in publicly joined the resistance in
recent days. Psychological warfare used by the government is certainly large caliber but
the biological responses are equally important.
Resistance seems to be determined, at least, to take the field and not leave the park
without a fight. And every night, there are thousands coming from work to join those
camping despite being constantly harassed and arrested by the police for respirators and
helmets. The fact that it is a young movement, with relatively little experience in
organizing the street level, making it very difficult for the crowds in the park to
withstand a frontal attack on the police. At this time, the collective strategy is to make
this the most expensive attack politically possible for the government. What happens the
day after a deportation is of course another question. But most important is that the
genie is now out of the bottle in Turkey , and that any further significant part of
youth is found and they began to dream of what they can achieve together .
On June 15, 2013
Source: "I've gone to resist, I'll be right back"
 meme: own a specific cultural space cognitive elements, see definition Wikipedia
 See here: Ãapulcu
 The Genie is out of the bottle and no one can make it fit ...
Declaration Taksim DayaniÅmasi
Taksim everywhere Resistance everywhere!
June 15, 2013
Platform Solidarity Taksim realized this statement following meetings and forums that took
long hours into the early hours of the morning.
Our resistance began to prevent the demolition of Gezi Park and save the trees spread in
Istanbul and throughout the country with the accumulated anger of thousands of people
during the 11 years of the regime of AKP. Hundreds of people responded to the 8th day of
We are seeing a resistance to the broader struggle in the history of our country for our
rights, which was exposed to intense police violence since the first day. This is a time
when people's rights, including the right to life, are trampled upon. However, this
cruelty has joined the crowds instead of disintegrating, has strengthened the solidarity
of the people who get to know each other through this struggle. Under the overwhelming
bombardment of gas, which suffocates the whole living being, more and more people took to
the streets and turned this into a major social resistance movement.
The first government reaction to the extremely clear and justified demands that were
expressed from the very first day of the resistance was to ignore them completely. They
then tried to divide the resistance, cause people and undermine the legitimacy of the
movement. At the national and international public opinion, the government has failed in
these attempts. Ultimately, it is the legitimacy of the government, not the resistance,
which discredited. Therefore, due to the pressure of our fair resistance, the AKP
government has been urged to start a dialogue. However, this is only the beginning, our
During the first 18 days of resistance, four people lost their lives because of police
violence: Ethem SarÄsÃlÃk Mehmet AyvalÄtaÅ, and Mustafa Abdullah CÃmert SarÄ. Many were
injured, lost their eyes, vision, and even members. We feel pain for those who were killed
and remember they were killed for their basic democratic rights. We repeat that no serious
legal action has been taken against the perpetrators and supervised the actions that led
to the murder of our friends, and we reaffirm that we will ensure that those responsible
for the violence are brought to justice. In addition, many people are still in custody
because of arbitrary detention policies applied by the security forces. On behalf of those
who resist in Gezi Park and Solidarity Taksim, we call for the release of all those who
were arrested for their involvement in the uprising across the country.
Meanwhile, we saw that we could unite, discuss, create common and fight together in spite
of the violence that has befallen us. What was considered a weak multiparty democracy has
allowed us to stand up in resistance against majoritarianism. Against the power of
government, which relies on ecological destruction to increase rents and property rent,
hundreds of thousands of people gathered in the park to defend Gezi trees and thus
defended their own lives and freedoms. The resistance Gezi Park area of ââfreedom as
showed great determination to maintain a peaceful conduct against police violence.
While people resisted in Taksim Gezi Park and Solidarity, the most important thing we have
learned so far is that the resistance can not be contained in time or in space, and will
continue each aspect of life, in all parts of the city and the country, in every square
meter each time.
The 18th day of our resistance, Saturday, June 15, we will continue our occupation to the
park and all living creatures therein, our trees, our living, our private lives, our
freedoms and our future. We will continue this fight until our demands are met.
This resistance will reflect the collective will of Solidarity Taksim and a symbol of our
global struggle. From that day, we will continue to fight against all kinds of injustice
and suffering in our country with the energy and the force generated by the struggle that
has spread across the country and perhaps the world.
We are stronger, more organized and more hopeful than we were 18 days ago.
This is only the beginning, the resistance continues!
Taksim DayaniÅmasi ("Solidarity Taksim")
June 15, 2013.
[Translations by us: OCLibertaire]
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