The Struggle Must Be Internationalist

PI Council member Ertuğrul Kürkçü on this crucial moment in the general crisis of capitalism.
Aggravated by the Covid-19 outbreak, this crisis is a stark manifestation of the incompatibility of the dominant mode of production with human development.
Aggravated by the Covid-19 outbreak, this crisis is a stark manifestation of the incompatibility of the dominant mode of production with human development.

Until we dissolve the capitalist system itself, humankind will confront a basic dilemma. On the one hand, we are faced with accelerated cycles of pandemics that impose “social distancing” for survival. Growing out of the “metabolic rift,” every new pathogen is a consequence of the destruction of our natural systems in contemporary capitalist economies. On the other hand, we are destined to come together in order to reproduce our species and our social being. Reproduction demands proximity.

The emerging tendency is to adopt an enhanced regime of social control. The capitalist class and its elites are unfolding plans to separate themselves from the mass of producers with digital barriers. They are looking to gear the capitalist mode of production under permanent surveillance of workers, sorting the infected out of production lines to keep the wheels turning. The rise of remote working, remote shopping, remote training and education is transforming homes into sweatshops at zero cost. On the horizon of global capitalism, a network of new repressive regimes is on the rise.

But workers will resist. In the eyes of the working classes, such exploitation and state suppression are as intolerable now as they were months ago. The aggravated sufferings of the working classes during the pandemic may have unveiled the “worth” of people in the eyes of the ruling classes. But the bourgeois imagination of “humanity” has collapsed under the attempts at maintaining “herd immunity” through government sponsored expansion of the disease at expense of the “vulnerable”. The failure of the profit-oriented economic regimes to respond to social needs during a time of public health crisis has severely undermined the ideological hegemony of the capitalist class across the globe.

The future hinges around the outcome of this confrontation — in individual countries as across the planet. No “iron law” of history guarantees a victory for our side. Humanity may still remain under the spell of capitalism and permit its natural systems to wither as a result. Yet efforts are never for naught. They are present in any outcome. Now it is high time to imagine, will and act for the redirection of history for the common cause of working people.

This implies international solidarity and cooperation in motley forms among the progressive forces of the world. Today’s internationalist approach should not simply suffice with solidarizing between individual struggles, but should also develop ways for joint struggles to achieve lasting gains at local and global levels.

We believe that — in our fight against the tyranny of Tayyip Erdoğan and his dictatorship in construction around Turkish-Islamist lines — we are also fighting against creeping fascism across Europe and the USA. The right wing forces in Europe, in spite of their Islamophobic rhetoric, are solidarizing with Erdoğan for undermining democratic and internationalist values across Europe, Asia and the Americas. Erdoğan has always benefited from the “appeasement” policies of the NATO alliance in countering the criticisms from the democratic forces of Europe and North America. Thus, a strong democratic and social movement in Turkey and Kurdistan would comprise a complementary dimension for countering the rise of the right wing everywhere.

We are firmly convinced that international solidarity of the peoples, labourers and oppressed of the world is the only way out for defending against oppressive regimes from within and imperialist attacks from without. We must not forget for a moment the need to hear, listen and act together in order to build an equal, free and just world.

We are already equipped with the decisions of the HDP’s fourth Congress to take decisive steps to establish strong internationalist ties, to develop international solidarity networks and to be part of the international struggle. Developing an organisation that will increase the common struggles with social and political democratic resistance movements all over the world is in accordance with these decisions.

We pitch the lessons of social struggle at the universal level: as bases of new policies and platforms that can be discussed for the future. With this approach, we will work towards bringing together the resistance movements and struggles around the world and creating platforms where they will interchange with each other.

And we fully endorse — as we put in practice in our own work — those principles that comprise the Progressive International’s vision of a “Democratic, Decolonized, Just, Egalitarian, Liberated, Solidaristic, Sustainable, Ecological, Peaceful, Post-capitalist, Prosperous and Plural” world.

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Ertuğrul Kürkçü

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