Kurdistan Communities Union (KCK) Presidential Council member Elif Ronahi shared her thoughts with ANF concerning 4 April, the birthday of the Kurdistan Worker’s Party’s (PKK’s) jailed leader Abdullah Öcalan.
In reference to Öcalan’s birthday, Ronahi stated that 4 April has been regarded by Kurdish people as their own ‘birth and revival day’ because “the existence of Kurdish people has strong links with the existence of the leadership.”
Ronahi celebrated Öcalan’s birthday on behalf of the KCK: “Kurdish people and Kurdish women have accepted the birthday of the Leadership as their day of freedom and as their re-birth. That is why they are tight-knit around him to the death. Because Kurdish people had been ignored before. It was the Leadership who led them to resistance, who made them embrace their own identity and their existence.”
‘The existence of Kurdish people has strong links with the existence of the leadership’
Ronahi clarified that the KCK and the Kurdish people do not just celebrate a birthday on 4 April as if they were celebrating biological birthdays of people. Abdullah Öcalan, she noted, evaluates his own birthday in the following way: “He evaluates his birthday in three ways. First, as his biological birth, the second is a birth with the PKK, the third is a new paradigmatic birth after the Imralı process”. Ronahi added: “In the essence of those three births lies life, the ‘new’ life, the ‘free’ life”.
“Looking at recent history, real socialism and natural liberation struggles”, Ronahi observed, “we have seen amazing struggles, but most of them were adopted in the system, because they did not focus on the ‘free human’ perspective. The leadership has changed this reality, evolved reality we perceive not just for the Kurdish people, but for all the oppressed peoples through a refusal of capitalist modernity.”
Öcalan, she stated, has “suggested a democratic civilisation and modernity paradigm. He has achieved confederalism, in practice. If we celebrate the birthday of the Leadership today, that is why we celebrate it. If ‘4 April’ is viewed by the Kurdish people as their own ‘birth and revival day’, this should not be seen as something that is overrated, or as something that is abstract. In this sense, the existence of Kurdish people has strong links with the existence of the Leadership.”
‘That is why they isolate him: to isolate his thoughts and the solution he proposes’
Ronahi commented on the attacks by Turkey’s authorities on the thoughts of Abdullah Öcalan and the isolation conditions that have been imposed on him for 22 years in Turkey’s Imralı Island. “One reason that they attack him is their rage against our Leadership. The second is their efforts to prevent the thoughts of the Leadership being transmitted to the people, because he suggested a new life philosophy for all the peoples,” she observed.
“That is why they isolate him: to isolate his thoughts and the solution he proposes for humanity. As the ecological, democratic-gender-emancipatory paradigm proposed by our Leadership has spread widely amongst the peoples, and as his impact on peoples around the world has increased, this has rather scared and enraged the enemy and the international hegemonic powers,” Ronahi stated.
‘An extraordinary struggle’ is needed to set Öcalan free
Defining the mentality behind the Turkish state’s isolation policy that has been applied on Imralı Island as a “middle age” mentality, Ronahi called for a struggle to break this isolation of Abdullah Öcalan and to celebrate his next birthday ‘together with him’ by achieving his freedom: “The (Turkish) state applies isolation with a mentality of applying the system of middle age dungeons. To break such practices can only be possible through struggle. Our commitment to our Leadership is not a topic of discussion and cannot be questioned by anyone. This is the most delicate subject for the Kurdish people and Kurdish women. The process we are passing through, is to expand the action to break the absolute isolation.”
“We have seen that a normal struggle is not enough. An extraordinary struggle under each possible circumstance must be sustained in order to break the isolation and set the leadership free. Only through such a struggle can we celebrate his birthday together with the ‘free Leadership’ on ‘free lands’ next year.”