Op-Ed: Letter to the People of Turkey
Daniel GreenfieldThe writer is a popular New York City based freelance commentator and a...
But your affairs are your own. If you want to let a fanatic in a cheap suit destroy Turkish nationalism in the name of
You talk about stolen land, when your entire country is stolen land, from Cyprus to Istanbul.
Islam, that's your business. But when he gets into business with terrorist organizations that attack, rape and murder our mothers and sisters (Iranian pro democracy women demonstrators), then it becomes our business. And when a country that persecutes its Kurdish, Assyrian and Armenian citizens, treat Iranian refugees like 3rd class citizens and hands them over to IRI thugs at every opportunity, and works tirelessly to appease a criminal regime, she must remember that we will not forget her erroneous ways.
You say you want an international investigation into the flotilla raid? Sure. Right after you allow an international investigation into that minor matter of Armenian genocide that you've been ducking for quite a while. As the new "standard bearer" in fighting for human rights, I'm sure you will agree that it's only fair that Turkey should undergo the same scrutiny it demands for other countries.
And then we can move on to the more than 10,000 political prisoners in your jails. A number that at times has topped 100,000. An independent investigation could also begin by looking into the torture and murder of political activists such as Engin Ceber. They could meet with representatives of TAYAD, the organization representing the families of prisoners. And they would no doubt be fascinated by the more than 1500 children in your prisoners who are there on "terrorism" charges. Like that 12 year old you arrested in 2008 for singing a Kurdish folk song. So by all means wrap yourselves in the banner of "Human Rights" and it will surely turn it into a noose and strangle you with it.
In Israel, Arabs are a legally recognized minority. Arabic is taught in schools and used as a legally recognized language. Meanwhile Kurdish identity is all but banned in Turkey and Iranian heritage and nationalism is under attack by the Islamist invaders. Kurdish names, folk songs and even the Kurdish language itself has been repressed. Your regime has actually prosecuted and removed officials for simply incorporating a Kurdish phrase into a greeting. You screech self-righteously about the "Palestinian children"-- perhaps we should talk about the hundreds of Kurdish children arrested for throwing stones at protests. Arrested and charged with terrorism. Just more of the thousands of political prisoners of oppressed minorities in your prisons.
And perhaps next time your dog Erdogan gets up to bark up about human rights and gets through lecturing us on the use of force against Islamic terrorists, shall we discuss how many times you used jets to bomb Kurdish rebels who were lightly armed at best. Including in 2008 when you invaded sovereign Iraqi soil in order to continue your genocide of the Kurdish people in cooperation with criminal mullahs of Iran.
You talk about stolen land, when your entire country is stolen land, from Cyprus to Istanbul. Your regime is a racist illegitimate entity based on the oppression of the Kurds, the Armenians, the Assyrians, Iranians, and numerous others. You went directly from being Imperialists to Fascists to Islamists, a truly dubious achievement for any nation. Your history is filled with slavery, ethnic cleansing, genocide and invasion. And that's just in the last century alone. If you had any sanity or shame, you would dig a hole, crawl into it, and hope that no one mentions words like "Minority Rights" or "Territorial Legitimacy" in your presence, instead of trying to use them as a club against Iranians and Israelis (Two nations whose national history predates yours by thousands of years).
But let us get back to your precious Islamist flotilla, decorated with Turkish flags that used to be more than just red versions of the Saudi flag. That ship you filled up with Muslim Brotherhood members and Islamist radicals bound for Gaza. Over in your wonderful nation of boundless freedom, reporters have been put on trial for even interviewing leaders of terrorist groups. You sentenced the head of a Kurdish party to six months in prison for calling the head of the PKK, Mr. Ocalan, instead of just Ocalan. He joins the more than 800 Kurdish politicians you imprisoned in the last year alone. And after all that you actually have the nerve to pretend to be "outraged" when Israel intercepts your flotilla full of political terrorists?
But of course we know how strongly you feel about blockades. Like the time you blockaded Armenia for Sixteen
You blockaded Armenia for Sixteen Years.
Years. Very well then. If you insist on sending vessels flying the Turkish flag to aid Hamas, perhaps Israel should begin sending tanks flying the Israeli flag to aid the PKK. And when a new democratic Iran is established, we surely will cut the flow of gas and oil to your arid, natural resource starved and useless land. We're not big fans of the PKK, but since you've decided to friend Hamas and IRI murderers, then what's good for the turkey, just might be good for the gander. Or perhaps for every boat flying the Turkish flag that is sent to Gaza, Israel should donate a million to the Iranian pro democracy movement and PKK. I wonder how along IRI could last with direct financial help form Israel.
And then there's the Republic of Cyprus. They might benefit from significantly upgraded air defenses. While the US insists on equalizing weapons sales to Turkey and Greece, Israel just might have something tastier to offer to one side. And the citizens of the Republic of Cyprus might actually be able to sleep peacefully in their beds, instead of being intimidated by savages showing off their F-16's over their heads.
Oh I know, what you're going to say. This means war. But you might want to reconsider. And what exactly was the last war you won single-handedly? And no, bombing starving Kurdish rebels from the air, or occupying Cyprus doesn't count. And how long could you fight that war, before a domestic Kurdish insurgency overthrows your little empire. If that doesn't happen, you might want to think about the big Russian bear at your back. The bear has been eyeing you for a long time now. And with your military engaged in a disastrous war for the Great Caliphate, your borders would be temptingly open. And who exactly would bail you out then?
Oh I know you've made many great news friends, such as Ahmadinejad and that fat king in the Arabian Desert, who tells your Erdogan when to jump and how high., but if you think mullahs care about their Sunni brethren, you've got another surprise coming. Meanwhile old Abdullah in the desert can't even protect himself without the US Marines. And if you think Obama would send them in to save your asses, you've got another thing coming. I'm sure if there were Russian tanks headed to Ankara, he'd make a vocal statement about it. And Russian Foreign Minister Sergei Lavrov would pretend not to laugh while hanging up the phone.
There is of course the European Union. Last time Russia pulled that trick, it was Britain that bailed you out in the Crimean War. But these days Her M(N)ajesty's Empire isn't quite in the same shape it used to be. Sure Cameron, Clegg and Harman will lick Erdogan's feet. But none of them want to be the next Tony Blair either. Germany doesn't like you very much anymore. Perhaps that time when it got enmeshed in WW1 to protect your Ottoman Empire may have put them off. Or your internal campaign of subversion exploiting Germany's horde of Turkish laborers. What are you left with then? France, Italy or perhaps Austria will forget that whole pesky Gates of Vienna thing and this time ride to your rescue.
No, when Russian commandos are ripping off your wife's head scarf-- there will be no one left to save you. Not your newfound allies, or Erdogan who will take the first plane to Riyadh, with as much of the 18 billion in gold and cash he stole from Iran as his sweaty hands can shove into the pockets of his cheap suit. And just think of it, as the Hagia Sophia church that you turned into a mosque, will become a church again. Istanbul will once again be Constantinople, which means a certain catchy 20's song will require a rewrite. Of course it may not happen exactly that way. But something close to it might happen. Erdogan's plan to change Turkey into a Muslim country will not succeed if alert pro democracy and secular Turks who have seen the human rights violation under Islam in Iran, have something to say in the next elections.
So when that day of reckoning comes, you will find that you have made enemies of former allies such as pro democracy Iranians, Israel and the US-- and that the new allies Erdogan has found for you in Islamic Republic and Syria would prefer a Russian controlled Turkey, that has no chance of ever reverting to a Kemalist government. And Erdogan's godfather in Saudi Arabia commands oil money, not troops. And while he might be willing to sink Turkey for the sake of Islam, perhaps there are Turks who value their nation, more than Islamism. If not, you can look forward to Erdogan "reforming" your country, until it has the military might of Pakistan, the literacy level of Saudi Arabia and the poverty rate of Egypt and rapist reputation of Iran’s mullahs. It is of course your choice.
People have the right to choose their destiny, for good or ill. And if you find that this letter is filled with contempt, it is a contempt fully merited by a regime that seeks to cloak its shameful betrayal of a former allies in the guise of human rights, when it brutally suppresses the rights of its own minorities. You may wish to go on dancing to the tune being played by Erdogan, to sheet music composed in Riyadh and Tehran. It is a very good tune. Filled with hate, violence and religious fanaticism. That also is your choice. But know that whatever you have was bought and paid by your ancestors who understood that Turkey would either modernize out of the gutter of Islam, or it would be washed away by the colonial tide. Your power does not come from Islam, it comes from the bread crusts of civilization that fall from the table of Europe and ineptitude of the corrupt mullahs of Iran. Abandon them for the red hued madness of the Jihad, and you will not rule over an empire, but over a wasteland. If you doubt that, look to the south and to the east. Look to the desert. You came from there once. And if you throw away your once secular and democratic country for the fanatical madness of Islam-- you will return there again.
Your Secular Pro Democracy Iranian Former Friend