Islam and leftism and the ‘opposition of the disconnected’


By Yasin Aktay

What can be said for those who have been honored with the path of insight, which God says He described as a blessing for humans and completed with Islam, yet are seeking welfare in other paths that have somehow shown themselves appealing?

There is a search or an ordinary discovery expressed in ways such as the left or socialist Islam, anti-capitalist Islam.

Its ordinariness comes from being an option that is always on the side within the left-right axis political understanding. The “socialist Islam” compositions were also more clearly expressed during a period. During the Republic era or recent times in Turkey, there has also been a connection, an effort to establish a synthesis between Islam and socialism or Islam’s social justice rhetoric and socialism.

In the recent times, this rhetoric expressed its efforts to make room for itself in politics against the Justice and Development Party (AK Party). The vast majority of those demanding action or discourse consisted of the resentful who were unable to find a place for themselves in the AK Party.

Hence, it is not surprising that the common characteristic of all these people, who have experience in Islamic left discourses or in seeking a leftist approach to Islam, is that they all have personal issues with the AK Party staff. Even this situation alone requires us to go a little deeper into the psychological roots of the Islamic left claim.

The Islamic left discourse is generally like a revenge discourse to which those who are disconnected at the main vein of Islamism – to a large extent for personal reasons – resort.

Hence, when the leaders of this movement entered the elections in AK Party lists in the 2007 elections, the movement dissolved itself. More recently, especially during the Gezi Park incidents, a different version emerged which opposed the AK Party and in fact mainstream Islamism, by using Islamic discourse. However, this time, all the matters for which it criticized the AK Party were worse in those who formed an alliance during the Gezi incident. Ownership in Islam was opposed in the most radical way, and this was the reason they were taking part in the Gezi protests. However, neither the connection nor the politics of the capitalist support apparent at the national and international levels in the Gezi movement were seen.

The intention and the politics of this alliance were very clear. The movement was the resistance or blow of center capitalism against the surrounding capital which is on a rise but is currently not central enough.

The only rhetoric which seems strange is the anti-capitalist rhetoric, whether under this or that name.

The last flag that could be waved against a leader, who only a couple of weeks before the Gezi incidents, announced the success of decreasing the interest rate to the lowest level recorded in Republican history, is the anti-capitalist flag. While it is so clear that it is the finance capitalist lobbies in the world that started and financed the revolt and launched it to the entire world, the anti-capitalist Muslim movement, stated in the lightest way possible, must have lost its way in Taksim. If we were to take seriously even for a moment their claims as independently of the Gezi context, can Islam be deduced to anti-capitalism?

Can a political ideology that emerged after Hegel, drain the expectations or stance of Muslims regarding politics, life, human, who are expected to be the bearers of an ancient struggle or stance?

Can the root of the fight we are seeing between people around the world today be deduced to a denominational or right-left dualism as coded since Hegel?

Did we not have a deeper, older and livelier story? Could the fight between man and the devil since Adam, the conflict between Abel and Cain, the fight between the sons of Abraham which is closer and has a deeper impact on the current times, be ended by the fight between leftists and rightists?

What if the right-left war is a new chain in the fight between the sons of Abraham?

Before attempting a proper analysis of capitalism, or to pursue the cause of an anti-capitalist or socialist version of Islam, far away from the awareness of the historical conditions under which capitalism emerged, is certainly missing both the history and the context of the fight.

Today, Europe’s resistance against Turkey’s joining the union, Israel’s presence and activity in the Middle East, both Europe and the US condoning it despite everything, European socialism’s approach to Israel, the opportunity created by the Holocaust and the regrets it later caused in the world, complexes and its projections on the current times.

The world’s interest in the Middle East and a fight between Christians and Jews has reached our day from the depths of history. The right-left axis conflict, or the conflict between classes, is so simple and insignificant in the total picture created by the historical course of the attitudes of both religions toward Muslims and its projections on the current times.

Fleeing from the middle of their own big and historic fight and diving into the right-left game makes one so pitiful.