The violent incidents that broke out on Oct. 6-7 marked Turkey's history as a torment and a profound political experience. The murder of nearly 40 citizens has left deep scars in the public conscience and also led to distrust for the PKK and the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP). Of course some fluctuations might be observed in the resolution process of such a deeply rooted and crucial problem. Everyone had already acknowledged that there would be provocations and public was wary of them. This was repeatedly uttered by both the government authorities and PKK leader Abdullah Öcalan, since reconciliation was attempted eight times before and each time the war was resumed after provocations when negotiations progressed to a critical level.
1993 is among the years when one of these peace efforts was traumatically interrupted. Turkey's eighth president, Turgut Özal, a reformist and democratic leader who introduced Turkey to the global scene had reached the last phase of negotiations with Öcalan as part of the reconciliation process on May 23, 1993. However, on the very same day, 33 civil military officers were killed by the PKK. Öcalan was first surprised, but then had to take over the responsibility of it. He knew that the organization could be mobilized with different dynamics. But still, he had to take over the responsibility and close the subject so as not to undermine his leadership. Another example was witnessed after May 1999 when Öcalan was caught and sent to Turkey by the U.S. Öcalan unconditionally ordered the organization to leave Turkey, but according to data revealed in the charges of the Ergenekon case, the two commanders who questioned him objected to it. According to data, one of them said, "At least 500 armed PKK members should stay in Turkey," while the other said, "The state would not take you seriously in a low density war."
The provocations that erupted on the grounds of the Kobani crisis on Oct. 6-7 are also among these dubious cases. Interestingly, this provocation as well did not reach its target. Even though the PKK leadership at their headquarters in Iraq's Qandil Mountains attempted to show that it had the potential to start a civil war in Turkey whenever it wished, it turned out not to be so. The HDP has lost its reputation to a great extent since it came to be known as a political party that called people to rise up and demonstrate on the streets. The HDP co-chair has lost all the sympathy he gained across Turkey in the latest presidential election, and Kurds also lost their trust in him. The violence of Oct. 6-7 was of no use for Kobani either. Until that date, the Turkish public empathized with the Kobani tragedy. But as it turned out that their concern was not the lives of the people in Kobani but the power struggle of the PKK and the Democratic Union Party (PYD) in the region, this empathy has declined.
The PKK did not keep any of its promises since May 2013, when they declared their forces were leaving Turkey. After the Gezi Park protests they stopped the pullout without a reason to see whether the government would be overthrown or not. And they did not continue the withdrawal even though then Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan managed to quell the protests. Meanwhile, the law regarding the reconciliation process was enacted in Parliament, which was a groundbreaking landmark for Turkey since the process was assured and legitimized by Parliament through the legislation.
In addition, Turkey welcomed 200,000 Kurds from Kobani after the Islamic State of Iraq and al-Sham (ISIS) invaded the region. In a process in which the PYD neither defended the region nor allowed anyone but itself to take any action, Turkey was immorally affiliated with ISIS and there were deliberate attempts to be charged with the invasion. But it was the PYD and PKK leadership that refused the aid offered by the Turkish Army, Free Syrian Army (FSA) and Iraqi Kurdistan Regional Government (KRG) President Masoud Barzani since their main concern was to maintain their dominance in Kobani rather than defending the region.
So there was no valid reason to kick off the provocations that led to the violence of Oct. 6-7 in Turkey. Even if there was, it would still not justify killing 40 civilians. Turkey now expects self-criticism from the PKK leadership and the HDP. They could only make amends for this massacre by introducing peace.