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Feb 8, 23

Joint declaration from Turkish anarchists: Let’s build solidarity and the struggle against this order

The following is syndicated from

On February 6th, anarchists from different cities issued a joint declaration on the aftermath of the earthquake. Here is their full statement as published on the social media account Sandıkta Çözülmez (Unsolvable at the Ballot Box):

Let’s build solidarity and the struggle against this order

On February 6, we were shaken by two earthquakes, one at 4:17 a.m. in Pazarcık district of Maraş with a magnitude of 7.7 and the other at 1:24 p.m. in Elbistan district of Maraş with a magnitude of 7.6. Even according to official statements, we are already facing a disaster in which thousands of people have lost their lives, thousands have been injured and hundreds of thousands of people have been directly affected.

Although earthquakes are natural events, what happens next is beyond an inevitable “natural” disaster. First of all, it should be emphasized that the centralization, dense urbanization and metropolitanization caused by capitalism lie at the root of why earthquakes are so destructive. However, this earthquake has once again revealed the consequences of capitalist development in Turkey in recent years being based on real estate, rent and plunder.

Despite warnings from scientists for years, despite the fact that it was known that there would be a major earthquake in that region in the near future and what should be done, the fact that nothing was done, and the continuation of uncontrolled and unplanned construction despite the so-called earthquake laws, invited this disaster. Hospitals, police stations and buildings even a few years old were destroyed, roads and bridges were rendered unusable.

The disaster was compounded by the “performance” of the state after the earthquake. Although the first day was very critical, the state did not use a significant part of its means. The much-vaunted massive militarist apparatus did not act when people’s lives were at stake; search and rescue teams and aid could not reach many places even after hours.

While the state did not mobilize its power, the natural feelings of solidarity that we know very well exist among the workers, the oppressed and the peoples were roused. Thousands of people mobilized with their own resources to rescue people under the debris and to show solidarity with the earthquake victims. In a very short time, an enormous mobilization of social solidarity began all over the country.

While people were struggling for their lives, the government again resorted to the usual methods to absolve itself of responsibility. Along with the discourse that Turkey is an earthquake zone and that these disasters are almost fate, a representation of “national mourning” was put on stage, embellished with the reading of the sala from mosques and the calling of those who lost their lives as “martyrs”. Again, they try to conceal the interests of the ruling classes behind nationalism.

On the other hand, the contractors who built buildings with bad materials in unsuitable places, the opportunists who hid basic necessities and sold them at exorbitant prices, and those who did not see that this system stole our lives, did not hesitate to accuse the earthquake victims of thievery and looting because they took the food and rescue materials they needed. Some fascists, trying to cover up what the state did and did not do, were not even ashamed to openly suggest that “soldiers should be ordered to open fire on looters”.

Hidden in this shamelessness is the fact that the main duty of the state is not to protect people’s lives, but to defend the interests of capital and their own power at all costs.

Capitalism has once again killed us horribly and massively. Capitalist barbarism and those who benefit from this order, all capitalists who feed directly or indirectly from construction rent, all central governments and local administrations that have so far pursued policies based on construction rent and the plunder of cities– in other words all parties and politicians of order– are responsible for this mass murder. Today we have been deeply wounded. We, as millions of workers and oppressed, will heal our wounds by building solidarity. But we call out to the actors of that politics of order: we will never forget what you have done and what you have not done. We have lost friends, families, loved ones, but we do not mourn. We feel anger, we hold grudges.

A free world will blossom in our anger.

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Our goal is to extend the coverage of It's Going Down with content from outside North America, including reports, analysis and interviews. We aim to not only build awareness of anarchist struggle worldwide but to contextualize events for an international audience. We publish original contributions as well as syndicating and/or translating work from other websites and social media. Submissions are welcome! Email us at [email protected]. We're on twitter at @igdworldwide.

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