22 October 2020

An internationalist fighter

Suphi Nejat Agirnasli, known under his party name Paramaz Kizilbas, was killed fighting ISIS on the 7th of October in Kobane. He was a 30 year old sociologist, who had worked on the dangerous working conditions of port workers of Tuzla, Istanbul.

His given name came from the founder of the Communist Party of Turkey, Mustafa Suphi, and its first general secretary Ethem Nejat, who were killed in 1921. His chosen name, Paramaz Kızılbaş, was the combination of the name of an Armenian socialist who was hung with his 19 friends in Istanbul in 1915 and "Kizilbas" is the name given to Alevis. He was neither Armenian nor Alevi. He was not Kurdish either. He was a communist. As his father wrote after his death, he went to Kobane for revolutionary solidarity.

Nejat was arrested in 2011 and taken to Diyarbakir for interrogation. The sociology notes in his place was taken as evidence of his membership of terrorist organization(s). He was translating books for living. His translations on Tutankahmun were taken as evidence of "action plans".

After he was released he said "The system is falling down. That's why the ones holding the power are so aggressive."

He was active in the students' movement and later in other radical engagements. He was a member of the communist party MLKP. His active solidarity with the oppressed peoples of his country led the way to his fight at the side of Kurdish resistance in Kobane. His fight was an ode to internationalist struggle. Rest in power Paramaz!

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