Turkey | SEP Declaration and Program on the Elections
SEP Declaration on Parliamentary and Presidential Elections
We cannot give revolutionary answers to the question of "What should we do in the 14 May elections" by looking only at today's vote arithmetic. Therefore, first of all, we must correctly grasp the course of the class struggle, its potential, and missed opportunities.
The conflicts within the ruling class in the last 20 years have evolved into the plunder of the country by the AKP. Workers' and peasants' sweat was plundered, public resources were plundered, natural resources were plundered, democratic rights were violently suppressed… Kurds, women, LGBTIs, and Alevis were discriminated against; youth were forced to become soldiers of the cheap labor hell.
Although these great injustices led to the accumulation of oppositional energy in society, this energy could not be exploited by socialists. However, the bourgeoisie, bourgeois institutions, and parties were completely inadequate in the face of the Erdogan regime, which began to destroy the bourgeois system as well. Socialists could rise as the leader of the whole society in opposition to the AKP. An active and strong political standing based on class radicalism could have repulsed the pressures of the AKP and changed the fate of the country, by backing up the class reactions of the working class and the democratic demands of wide social sectors. But the socialist organizations that claimed to lead the socialist left could not display such abilities, because these forces, far removed from the perspective of class struggle, could not be expected to lead a radical class movement.
On the one hand, the HDP (Kurdish Party), which follows identity politics as the main strategy, and the left bloc it leads have been busy condemning the Marxist class perspective for many years. Moreover, they have played tremendously regressive roles by enforcing this line in the worker unions where they are dominant or influential. On the other hand, there is a socialist opposition focused on secularism and "the gains of the republic", led by the TKP (Communist Party Of Turkey). It is by nature that this line, which expresses the concerns of the urban middle classes, is quite far from the world of class radicalism. On the other hand, the popularity of TIP (Workers' Party of Turkey) has been promising in the sense that it shows the existence of lively social dynamics inclined towards socialists. However, TIP, as an election-oriented mass party, could not exist in the actual struggle, and with its moderate content that tried to bridge the HDP-CHP (Republican People's Party), it was far from taking on revolutionary roles.
As a result, the leadership of the anti-AKP opposition was, in practice, abandoned to the bourgeois opposition bloc, the Nation Alliance. The National Alliance and those who tried to act as its spokespersons, by constantly denouncing the actual struggle, succeeded in leading the social energy to the ballot boxes. This was possible through the political bankruptcy and pessimism on the socialist side not by the political skills of bourgeois opposition under the CHP leadership and its partners.
Unfortunately, the possibilities for a revolutionary shift in society could not be created by leading the reactions of the workers and youth in the actual struggle, and we have come to these days. Despite the devastating effects of the economic crisis, popular reactions, and the weaknesses of the system, socialists could not open a strong labor front. The result is that the socialist left in Turkey needs a shell change. Revolutionary Marxists, who have fresh forces to realize this transformation, must continue their progress.
The revolutionaries will never go after the National Alliance, the leader of the bourgeois normalization program, nor will they cause illusions in the masses by giving more meaning to the reformist left of identity politics, parliamentarism, and nationalism.
Around all these political perspectives, our party leader Güneş Gümüş will run as an independent revolutionary parliamentary candidate from Ankara 1st Region in the upcoming elections. Our campaign is for bringing the Marxist program to the masses and organizing an energetic classist campaign to enlarge our ranks with new dynamic forces.
Of course, we understand the mood of getting rid of Erdogan in the masses. As a matter of fact, our Party has been fighting at the forefront of the resistance against Erdogan for many years. On the other hand, our party will not take the responsibility of a possible National Alliance government by calling for a vote for Kılıçdaroğlu in the presidential elections. Will an economic administration led by Babacan, who is the ex-economy minister of Erdoğan, not undertake the fastest neoliberal attacks in order to remove the economic debris that will be taken over from the AKP?
The bourgeois opposition bloc National Alliance, which talks about attracting foreign capital and orthodox economic policies at every opportunity, proposes a very clear bourgeois program against the workers. In this context, SEP will not adopt an attitude that will benefit Erdoğan, but it will not call for a vote for Kılıçdaroğlu in the presidential election. In the parliamentary elections, on the other hand, the Labor and Freedom Alliance (LFA) can be supported only on behalf of the political representation of the Kurdish people in regions where our party has not nominated an independent parliamentary candidate. On the other hand, this does not mean any illusions about LFA, our criticisms and differences remain where they are. As a matter of fact, as SEP continues to gain strength and will run the elections with its own worker candidates in different electoral districts, it will leave behind such grudging vote calls.
We know that the exploitative system will continue to cause many more troubles for the workers. Even if the AKP leaves, this reality will remain in its place. Neither this rotten system will demonstrate a capacity to function, nor the bourgeois factions and parties can be a solution to the fundamental problems of people. The economic, political, and social crises will continue to overwhelm society by gaining a permanent character. This will bring up various risks, as well as the possibilities of radicalization to the left. That is why we must raise the class struggle without falling into parliamentary illusions and be stronger against all kinds of conditions of the new period.
We will not have a future without being organized, without raising class consciousness and struggle. We call on all workers and youth to join SEP and to organize the class struggle.
Our party will continue to raise the red flag of revolutionary Marxism under any circumstances in the coming historical period.
March 23, 2023
People united will never be defeated!
Ankara 1st Region
INDEPENDENT REVOLUTIONARY PARLIAMENTARY CANDIDATE GÜNEŞ GÜMÜŞ
Precautions not taken, cities falling into ruins over and over, economic crises swirling into, political pressures that are loosened and tightened around our necks, lives destroyed in the hell of cheap labor...
Many generations have spent their lives in this country under these conditions. Despite all these bitter experiences, every political wing in Turkey is trying to persuade us in a moderate way, to make us believe that workers have no alternative.
We are not condemned to this system that goes nowhere! We need a new line for the working people, the youth, and the oppressed. This line is to fight shoulder to shoulder, solidarity, and comradeship… Let's not settle for middle ways, we should combine intelligence, enthusiasm, and courage with revolutionary effort. That's when this rotten system will come to an end.
We are revolutionaries, we are coming to establish a new order. Join us!
Güneş Gümüş, who has been a militant in the revolutionary struggle since her high school years, declared her candidacy in the elections to raise the voice of the rising struggle for equality and freedom in the streets, workplaces, schools, and city centers.
Vote for Güneş Gümüş!
Become a campaign volunteer!
Let's raise the voice of the revolution together!
The rotten system to the trash bin!
��Genel Başkanımız Güneş Gümüş'ün (@GunesGumus_SEP) Ankara 1. Bölge bağımsız devrimci adaylığını açıkladığı basın toplantısından kesitler;— Sosyalist Emekçiler Partisi - SEP (@SEPmedya) March 28, 2023
"Biz devrimciyiz bu düzenin orasını burasını düzeltmeye değil, topyekün bu enkaz düzenine tekme atmaya geliyoruz!"#EnkazDüzeniÇöpe pic.twitter.com/hz94nPzYqp
The system of taking from the poor and giving to the rich must end! Social resources should only be used for social purposes. Progressive wealth tax should be imposed on the super-rich, and the tax burden should be removed from the shoulders of the workers.
We must nationalize the power generation and distribution plants, airports, railroads, ports, banks, mines, and telecommunications companies that are the lifeblood of the economy without compensation, and put them under workers' management. We will seize businesses that are given to local and foreign bosses under the name of privatization!
All wages should be increased every month at the rate of real inflation, workers should get a share of welfare in parallel with the growth figures announced. The minimum wage should be an exception and must be raised above the poverty line. The lowest pension should be raised to the minimum wage level. The precarious, flexible, and subcontracted working regime must end.
End Yellow Unions and Union Mafia
Reactionary trade union laws that prevent new and struggling unions, condemn workers to unions controlled by the boss, the state, and power, prevent the use of the right to strike, and set barriers in front of the organization must be abolished. The union bosses and union mafias who are involved in all kinds of corruption must be liquidated.
Daily working hours should be reduced to 6 hours without any reduction in wages. Thus, it will both contribute to the solution of the unemployment problem and prevent the workers from being squeezed like lemons.
For a Free and Qualified Education and Healthcare System
Private hospitals and private schools should be expropriated immediately. The quality of education and health services should be increased and the necessary resources should be provided immediately.
Freedom and Gender Equality
All domestic work on women's shoulders should be socialized. Free public kindergartens and cafeterias should be built in all workplaces and neighborhoods. Women's employment should be increased. Active protection should be provided to women who are subjected to violence. The mentality of impunity in the judiciary must end. LGBTI+ individuals who have suffered discrimination and violence should have all full rights to be equal.
Fraternity and Equality for Kurds and Alevis
The demands of Kurds and Alevis, who have been subjected to discrimination, oppression, and massacres for many years, must be accepted. We defend the equality and fraternity of the peoples against the fascist gangs that divide the workers, reject equality, engage in xenophobia, and strengthen racism and chauvinism.
From Workers' Actions to Workers' Power
We are the tireless defenders of any worker's action against the capitalist system. We have to march to power through street protests, and general strikeç. Forward to a new workers' republic of workers!