Insurrectionalism

Tear Gas & Twitter in Taksim - an anarchist eyewitness analysis from Gezi Park, Istanbul

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Tear gas is a very good place to start trying to understand what is happening in Turkey.  The main purpose of tear gas is to terrorise and thus break up large crowds of people.  In Istanbul over the last weeks huge quantities have been used over and over to prevent large anti-government demonstrations developing. This wasn't about 'riot control' - generally there was no riot to control.  In this piece I'm going to put the Gezi park revolt in the context of the cycle of struggles that began in 2010 and of the specific economic, politcal and historical situation of the Turkish republic to try and draw out the lessons for all of us fighting global capitalism.

Anarchism, insurrections and insurrectionalism

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Insurrections - the armed rising of the people - has always been close to the heart of anarchism. The first programmatic documents of the anarchist movement were created by Bakunin and a group of European left-republican insurrectionists as they made the transition to anarchism in Italy in the 1860's. This was not a break with insurrectionism but with left-republicanism, shortly afterwards Bakunin was to take part in an insurrection in Lyon in 1870.m[Castellano]

'Propaganda By Deed'

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In 1871 Parisian workers took control of their city, creating the Paris Commune. It was eventually suppressed, leaving tens of thousands of communards dead. A violent campaign against the left ensued in Europe, driving the anarchists underground. The tactic of 'propaganda By deed' was born out of the frustration felt by revolutionaries because of this.

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