By Yavus Selim
“What’s going on in Turkey?” is a common question on the lips of people as varied as Joseph Gordon-Levitt and some American Muslim scholars. People are finding it hard to wrap their head around the facts. The most stable, economically successful and popular democratically elected government in the Middle East has been experiencing widespread protests over… a planning application? That doesn’t sound right and of course, it isn’t the case at all.
I do not condone violence against protestors but do want to take a closer look at the why people are gathering in Taksim Square and elsewhere in Turkey.
Here are ten tweets that expose what the current “protests” in Turkey are all about:
Tweet 1: So much for the trees
Yes. The figures are astronomical but in the last ten years this Turkish government has planted enough trees to repopulate a sizable section of the Amazon. So we can now establish that these protests have nothing to do with the environment at all and they were merely using it as a cover. A cover for what?
Tweet 2: With friends like these
For once, Pamela Geller (the well known anti-Islam blogger who stated that she hopes Israel bombs Makkah and Madinah) is right. This isn’t about trees at all. It is about the secular bloc in Turkey making a final anarchic stand against what they hate most in this world – their nation coming closer to Islam once more.
Tweet 3: Don’t believe me?
Some of you will say I’m being paranoid. 4 military coups and 1 hanged Prime Minister says I’m not. In fact, a tweet like the one above are hardly surprising when these protesters and their previous iterations treated men and women who were Islamic like scum for more than 60 years. Closing religious schools, banning hijabs and imprisoning members of Islamic organizations are just some of the “freedoms” these protesters miss.
Tweet 4: They support Assad and are supported by him
There are numerous tweets showing that a large proportion of the protesters are communists and others who are deeply upset at how unfairly Bashar Assad is being treated by the Turkish government. For them, this is a chance to remove a government that has supported Palestinians, Libyans, Egyptians, Rohingya, Bangladeshis and now the Syrians. They want to go back to their previous government whose only true friend was Israel.
Tweet 5: They want the dictatorship of the drunk
Mustafa Kemal was a well known drunk
and died of liver cirrhosis. He was actually quite proud of this fact and referred to himself as “the drunk.” Hence, these protesters refer to themselves as the “children of the drunk.” Meanwhile, Erdogan is pious and a graduate of an Imam Hatip school who has never smelt alcohol. Who would you like to be in charge? The protesters clearly prefer the former.
Tweet 6: How dare someone curb their alcohol?
Recent laws introduced by the Turkish government to curb the sale of alcohol (curb, not ban) has got the protesters up in arms. They feel that this is against their freedom completely ignoring the fact that many non-Muslim countries have exactly such rules to prevent the anti-social effect of alcohol such as drunk driving, domestic violence, sexual assaults, disorderly conduct and … blocking roads. By the way, the support being shown to the Turkish protesters by the Egyptian secularists (as exemplified by this tweet) is indicative of their shared goal to prevent the success of any pious government by any means necessary.
Tweet 7: Something fishy going on here
Now, I think there are way too many conspiracy theories in the Middle East but the way that a photo from last year’s Istanbul marathon was passed off as a picture of protesters swarming a bridge made me question who was behind it and what motive did they have.
Tweet 8: Lack of gratitude
The breathtaking part of all this is that this government has presided over the most successful era in Turkish politics for over 100 years. However, all the successes mean nothing to these protesters who claim that it is audacious to boast about these achievements completely ignoring that the 60 years they were in charge had Turkey’s prestige and power at lower levels than meat in a Donner Kebab.
Tweet 9: Immoral comparisons
To even make such a comparison is idiotic at best and immoral at worst. Any objective person would know that this is a completely unjustified comparison given that Mubarak was a corrupt secular military dictator who kept his country poor whilst enriching himself whilst Erdogan is a pious democratically elected Prime Minister who has clashed with the military and has enriched his country. But this doesn’t matter, because in the warped world of the protesters Erdogan is Mubarak, whilst Assad is… just misunderstood.
Tweet 10: No turning back
This tweet reminds me of that Will Ferrel Meme… “that escalated quickly!” Apart from the higher than average levels of imprisoning journalists, Erdogan has (almost) successfully brought to an end the war against the Kurds, has forged close ties with all neighbors, has stood on the correct side of revolutions from Egypt to Syria (in most cases the first world leader to do so), has fought to limit the power of the coup-happy army and has got a majority at the ballot box for every election in the last 10 years. And he has spent time in prison for simply reciting a poem. But in the protesters narrative only one thing matters. If you are for Islam – they are against you.
All the above does not mean that I condone violence against protesters. The violence (on both sides) needs to stop and cannot be justified. Erdogan alluded to this himself by stating that a full investigation would be done to see if excessive force has been used assome pictures would suggest. However, given the context in which they take place, the protests in Turkey feel less and less like a protestsand more like an attempted coup against a civilian government.
Many (just like in Egypt, just like in Tunisia, just like elsewhere) will claim that the protests are not against Islam at all but against those who are trying to change society to be more Islamic. To the rest of us, we fail to see the distinction.
The protests in Turkey are not protests at all but an attempt to instigate a coup against a civilian government. They are the last sigh of a secular liberal elite who have realized far too late that the future does not belong to them anymore. The future belongs to Islam.
June 3, 2013 at 6:01 AM
I thought there was something fishy about this whole thing, jazax for clearing a lot of it up.
June 3, 2013 at 8:23 PM
SubhanAllah. The protesters include a wide range of opinions – including Muslims, who prayed together in Taksim Square. Erdogan is practising Muslim, but his government is NOT an Islamic Government, as it does not rule by Shariah. His government has not yet made peace with the Kurds, but the PKK’s guerrillas are now withdrawing from Turkey. It is up to Erdogan to show good faith in return, by implementing measures that will bring lasting peace.
It is easy to say that one ‘does not condone violence’, however, if you support Erdogan against largely peaceful protesters, you are objectively supporting his vicious police/aynasizler.
Peace and justice will only come to Turkey when its system of governance is based 100% on the Shariah of Allah SWT. Erdogan opposes that, so who’s the munafiq?
June 4, 2013 at 7:57 AM
can you please link to an article or images that show any women with hijab were in the crowd. I know hijab is not all or nothing as practicing Muslim, but lets assume most practicing women do wear hijab.
Based on all the analysis I have seen, from experts, from people on the ground, the far majority are communists, followed by other non-commi secularists. No “practicing Muslim” support for it because the protest takes its roots in being “anti-Islamist”.
June 4, 2013 at 8:27 AM
here’s an article quoting a Professor from Ankara
” I think that Turkey is a democratic society and Tayyip Erdogan is trying to get Turkey into [a] much more Islamism structure – Islamist state is experiencing these strong reactions. “
June 3, 2013 at 6:08 AM
YOU ARE RIGHT THEY HATE ISLAM TO APPEAR IN TURKEY
June 4, 2013 at 8:58 AM
Nonsense you can’t get away from Islam in Tukey,it dominates Istanbul skyline & ones ears with mosques competing.
As for these protests, the first point here is completely misguided, [ I didn’t bother to read any more ] they started because trees were being bulldozed in one of the last green spaces in the city.
What the hell do they need another mall for or as erdogan is now saying yet another mosque? Because Erdogan is a shareholder in building companies ?
50% of the Turks are secular,time Erdogan realised that & stopped telling them how they are going to live.
Muhammad Wajid Akhter
June 4, 2013 at 11:03 AM
Ah, it’s a real shame that you didn’t bother to read anymore of the article past the first point because you would have realised that you disliked the rest of it even more.
Also – it is a fact in almost every single report on the protests that they have little to nothing to do with the Gezi Park planning permission.
Finally, by the logic of your last statement the secularists can’t tell the other 50% how to live either. But, then again, I did you the courtesy of reading your whole statement.
June 4, 2013 at 11:42 AM
I could tell from the first misguided point it would not be worth reading the rest, just as I noticed most comments that were disagreed with were taken down , as no doubt mine will be which proves just what the riots are about, you want it all the muslim way !
What part of this do you not understand….. ‘ they “started” because trees were being bulldozed’………. it was when the police moved in with brutality the masses started to arrive & the whole situation blew out of proportion. Get your facts right.
As for YOUR last para, that again is the point ,secularists are not telling the pious how to live,it is Erdogan pressing PIOUS way of life on secularists.
Just like other muslim countries are squeezing out non muslims.
THIS IS 2013 not the 700c.
June 4, 2013 at 3:13 PM
All this over tree’s?
No! The CHP, TKP, DHKP, BDP and all those opposing religious government used this as a disguise to unite forces and try to make a stand under the pretext ” we stand united against a authoritarian regime”. These leeches, NEVER stood for Syrians or any other humanitarian cause except anti religion. When the universities didn’t allow headscarf and as a result stopped the education of Turkish Muslim women, which of them protested? NONE! When they had to take their scarfs off or wear wigs which of these parties ever wrote to Amnesty, European Union, International Media? NONE! So this is not over tree’s but a attempt to derail AK party, derail religious leadership and most importantly hide their hypocrisy. Yes in some areas the police did come down heavy, Erdogan has stated a full investigation will take place but when was throwing Molotov Cocktails acceptable? When was raising the flags of a terrorist organisation not going to gain a reply? When was it ok to spray ” F the police” on shop fronts? You see the hypocrites, ignorants and arrogants have joined forces. They never protested when Israel killed Turkish citizens on Mavi Marmara, and they sure as hell didn’t ask Occupy Wall Street to aid them then. Now Occupy Wall street, Bruce Willis, and the rest of the propoganda machinery are trying to stick their noses in Turkeys politics. These people cannot fathom that a mocked religious school has gave way to a Prime Minister. They cannot fathom that in the “white house” a woman wears a headscarf and alchohol is not permitted in government meetings. They cant fathom the fact that women in scarfs can openly gain a education. Had the current government did 10% of the oppression the religious majority faced in the hands of these idiots, a civil war would of broke.
//As for YOUR last para, that again is the point ,secularists are not telling the pious how to live,it is Erdogan pressing PIOUS way of life on secularists.//
A few years ago it was other way around..no protestors ever showed up then..
//THIS IS 2013 not the 700c.//
If by this you meant Islam is the problem as being oppressive in nature,then the actual problem resides within your head :)
Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi
June 5, 2013 at 4:36 AM
None of the comments were taken down by Comments Team. Those that are hidden are done so from the readers’ rating which MM has no control over.
Comments Team Lead
June 5, 2013 at 8:49 AM
Thank-you for your reply Aly.
You seem angry & a little confused. In your rant you are determined to mention things which are completely unrelated so I shall disregard them.
The police brought this on. Had a quiet protest been allowed to continue as a democracy allows, none of the injuries & deaths would have occurred.
The world has seen the brutality of Turkish police…. I would throw something too if someone was trying to injure me,it’s a human thing called self defence.
I have watched all this from the Russian TV,Al Jazeera,BBC, & Sky,which is more than you will have done.
As for Islam being to blame … well yes indirectly. Most of those protestors are muslims, but because you see Islam in a different light why should you force your views on them ?
They are not forcing you to drink, they want the right, it is not they who are saying no kissing in public, they want the right…& so it goes.
YOU wanted headscarves you got them,the secularists don’t wear them that is their right too.
You can live your life as you want & leave others to live as they wish.
The root of it all is that Erdogan is telling people how to live, how many children to have, no cesarean ops etc, things that are personal & nothing to do with the state, whatever happened to tolerance in Turkey ?
Live & let live.
June 5, 2013 at 8:55 AM
As for raising the terrorist flag…if they did, where’s your sense of humour, Erdogan called them terrorists so I expect someone called his bluff !
The man should learn to keep his mouth shut & learn about diplomacy.
June 3, 2013 at 6:22 AM
Its funny that you are saying Erdogan is pious, hes not pious atleast for now. He should forbid riba and bring sharia law, its a good time for him to blame the protests and bring sharia law but hes a coward probably scared from zionists?
June 3, 2013 at 7:31 AM
The people are not ready for the Shariah to be implemented with a big bang. It is a step by step approach. You should look at the state the people where in and are in now. There has been already an improve in Turkey towards implementing Islamic Shariah. There needs to be a gradual approach and that is what Erdogan is doing. People need to stop slashing out at each other and need to be themselves the change they want to see in this world. Only then the ummah will find back to its former strength.
June 3, 2013 at 9:19 AM
I disagree, if you read about Iran Islamic revolution you can notice that it happened with a bang(I know its not ruled by sharia and Nope i dont like Iran but was an example). The protestors are destroying and burning things, its time for now, the seculars understood his intention now time to do our intention and dont you know that Allah helps? If he doesnt do that it might end up bad. I dont find excuses to support the ilussions. I see the truth, being allies with Israel again is a good thing? screw their money and alliance! anyway he can make country more islamic but bringing Shariah Law something different… Muslims are not doing anything they just sit and wait for leaders do something!
June 3, 2013 at 10:21 AM
Yes because Iran worked out so well…
June 3, 2013 at 11:00 AM
This is what Islam is, a regressive oppressive authoritarian ideology. That’s why people protest, because that is exactly what they don’t want and as comments pointed out that’s what Erdogan introducing step by step.
June 3, 2013 at 12:37 PM
E. The Prophet did not impose anything “with a bang”. The Prophetic way is one of planning and thoughtfulness, and giving people what they need when they are ready for it. Iran is a terrible comparison to make. The Prophet was ordered by Allah to make sure the people prayed, and the others commandments of the religion were unimportant. Turkish society is not ready for “Shariah Law” (whatever that is) now. Thankfully Erdogan is in control and you, are not.
Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi
June 4, 2013 at 3:29 AM
I agree with hcas. The Prophet (SAW) changed the hearts of the people for 13 years before Shariah started being implemented and the full implementation took 10 years of his Madni life. So there was no bang.
*Comment above is posted in a personal capacity and may not reflect the official views of MuslimMatters or its staff*
June 4, 2013 at 5:35 AM
I think we have to be careful about this notion of gradual sharia’ization. Erdogan has made no such promises neither has he implemented any legal reforms to move towards this. All his legal reforms are related to social issues that have parallel in other democratic and secular societies. For example, allowing hijab is a straight-up freedom of choice issue. Curbing alcohol is a social issue.
When we link Erdogan’s changes to some underlying conspiracy to go to complete Islamic law, then we are basically agreeing with the commi-secularists who are making this contention.
I am not judging whether this is good or bad. My point is let’s not shove hypothetical motivations down Erdogan’s throat.
June 3, 2013 at 8:28 AM
Erdogan is not perfect neither is he pious, yes. But at least he’s trying to be more Islamic– taking baby steps.
June 3, 2013 at 10:53 PM
Since when did you look into his heart to see if he is pious? Leave that between him and God.
June 11, 2013 at 11:27 AM
I said he’s “not perfect neither is he pious”.I meant to say he is not perfect and not pious. Need I give you a 101 class on English semantics?
June 3, 2013 at 1:07 PM
E …… are you really who u r? or just trying to create Fitnah on this forum…..To me your comments are nothing but another extremist person, like Pamela Geller, or any un-educated Moulvi who just want to conquer the whole in dream and when wakes up, ask for his/her break-fast and go back to sleep.
*This comment was edited by the MM Comments Team in order to comply with our Comments Policy*
June 3, 2013 at 7:04 AM
It hurts me as a muslim to read this article. Those who are under constant prejudices like Muslims = Terrorists, should be careful when talking about others. Repeating those mistakes of past leaders, following their path wouldn’t save our president. He should himself know much better how these acts create concequences. You can find mistakes of Erdoğan’s supporters also, listing them here doesn’t add to anything good but deepens the hatred. If you want to do something about it pray. A sociological and political and also psychlogical analysis is not that easy. Try the harder option, either talk to calm down or unite.
Erdoğan is not a neighbourhood bully he is the prime minister of Turkey. However, his words are not of a leader. He should definitely look what his words/actions have created and correct himself. He can’t even reflect a prudent and sagacious leader image let alone do dava.
We are not trying to select a political/ethnic/religious party in this situation, we are not trying to emphasize the differences but trying to create a respectful community who can live together. Leaders as much as authority should have responsibility instead of arrogance. Otherwise, those events that took out in Iraq, Afghanistan, Bangladesh, Tunisia, Eygpt, Syria etc. are not far away from Turkey itself. May Allah protect us from all kinds of cruelty and fitnah, from those coming from muslims and nonmuslims.
People should take lessons from history not instances to create turmoils. Muslims should be much more wise, sensitive and informed in their speech and actions. May Allah show and guide us the right path. Selam Aleykum.
June 3, 2013 at 9:13 AM
Doesn’t matter, who on earth is going to replace Erdogan? And what has he said that is “against Islam”? From a religious point of view, no one has done better than him for Turkey in the past 100 years.
Hijab restrictions are much less, I believe 11 year olds can now finally go to Islamic schools, Alcohol although not banned is at least regulated slightly (but then again, it’s similar in the west too), and although I’m not 100% sure, but I think little children can learn the Qur’an again (though I’m not sure if Erdogan was able to allow this reform or not).
Can you imagine, if any of the Ottomon Caliphates, or any of the great heroes that we revere in our history, the Prophet Muhammad(pbuh), Umar(ra), Ali(ra), Salahudin(rh) etc. you really think, they wouldn’t turn Turkey upside down if they saw the kind of bans and restrictions it has on Islam? Or the fact that the same Shaytaan who took out the Caliphate, had a “Blasphemy protection” against him?
“We are not trying to select a political/ethnic/religious party in this situation”
So, you don’t care if a kaafir leads you? Something wrong with the mentality of the Turks, and this is from years of brainwashing from a very very young age.
May Allah guide you, and all of Turkey and the rest of us to what is the truth.
June 3, 2013 at 9:32 AM
If Prophet Muhammad(pbuh), Umar(ra), Ali(ra), Salahudin(rh) etc. was alive they would have already revived Shariah Law. Im sure if Muslims on the Turkey tried to bring Shariah Law Now everyone would be happy about it and wouldnt say nooo too early for Shariah lets stop them? or will you stop them because they wanted to bring something good!? I dont get people… If you tried to bring Sharia Law slowly protests will keep going on, and everytime they will protest for bans things will get in chaos, u cant bring Sharia Law slowly, u have to do it with a bang.
June 3, 2013 at 10:53 AM
Your’e not getting the point Akhi, Erdogan certainly isn’t a “Muslim hero”, but he’s the best Turkey has got and with the current mentalities, for now he’s hard to replace.
That’s why I think, the ummah should be supporting him against the Kemalists/Secularists, and not taking to the streets, shouting for him to be toppled, a long with communist and anti-islam placards.
June 3, 2013 at 4:13 PM
Why do you think things such as alcohol were prohibited gradually? I didnt see the Quran banning alcohol with a bang.
June 3, 2013 at 12:03 PM
Dear Al Mudaari,
some points to clarify;
1. Your words: “Something wrong with the mentality of the Turks, and this is from years of brainwashing from a very very young age.”
my comments are binding for me, you cannot generalize all muslims in a country. there are many sorts of muslims ranging in a wide spectrum. that is not a clear and correct sentence.
2. Mine: “We are not trying to select a political/ethnic/religious party in this situation, we are not trying to emphasize the differences but trying to create a respectful community who can live together.”
let me explain this with an analogy, think of a man and a son. let’s say that this man decides to send his son to a certain school and the son comes and says “father I don’t want to go to that school.” the father hits the son in the face and says “whatever you say and whatever you do, I will do what I decided.”
at this point the party, the religion, the ethnicity is not important. the father should ask “why?” whether the school is an islamic school or not, whether the father is muslim or not, whether the child is muslim or not.. instead of hitting. is my point clear?
the events and protests started because the police attacked excessively those unarmed and peaceful crowd who said “we don’t want this project in Taksim”
Erdoğan said as a response in the opening ceremony of the 3rd bridge, if you can speak Turkish you can find and watch the video, he says “ne yaparlarsa yapsınlar, karar verdik ve uygulayacağız.” meaning that “whathever they do, we decided and we will do it”
and following speeches of Erdoğan did not show any tolerance nor understanding but condemning those people and attaching them to oppositional party, terrorist groups, marginal groups etc. that is what makes people crazy. he separates people as those who vote for him and those who doesn’t.
Things that could be under control and resolved so easily at the beginning, got worse with Erdoğan’s speeches and the events evolved into a secularist/nationalist opposition. and now in this huge crowd there are ofcourse provocations, corrupted people and terror creating people attacking muslims sometime.
we don’t support any kind of violence and vandalism that the opposers create and we know what other parties had done in Turkey, that doesn’t mean we will not warn or criticise Erdoğan’s actions and arrogance.
3. your words “So, you don’t care if a kaafir leads you?”
the essence of being a political leader and governing is not bringing prosperity, wealth and bussiness conductions with the west but justice.
what hurts me, we expect things (like justice, tolerance, mercy, communication, patience etc.) from a kaafir that we didn’t/don’t ask from a muslim. saying that I a am a muslim is not enough, I have to carry out that character. If a muslim does the same thing in the same way that a kaafir has done..
before the saddest events of 28 Feb 1997, a group of hijabi girls were showing their opposition to the banning and the oppresion and they were responded with the same way of police attack, excessive and cruel. the political/ruling party of the time condemned them and attached them to the opposition party of the time and refused to talk to them. that is what we are against. If Erdoğan can examine the situation and gives up his arrogance, he will win, not anybody else.
4. Last point. Islam can’t be equal to any political party or any ideology. Islam is to say what is right and just anytime, anywhere and for anybody.
June 4, 2013 at 6:50 AM
Although I agree very much with what you say in terms of leaders and leadership. I believe Turks need to look beyond, “small” matters and think wider and farther. They are instigating you by making a mountain of a molehill. And your country is going to be chaotic all because of what? Because Erdogan spoke in a certain manner.
Also if what you say is true. Then this narrative has to be made clear to the world at large. What is portrayed worldwide that the author of this article has very clearly stated, is that this is becoming very visibly a SECULARIST vs ISLAMIST political fight. Sharia Vs The Values of the World… marginalizing Muslims further.. And the discourse from the level headed are not heard at all. We are only hearing from the defensive to the ultra secularist whom we know what their agenda is.
June 3, 2013 at 8:05 AM
Those who hide behind the curtains, with their one eye patches… are pushing this deception. If the secularists are this bad, then the so called “muslims” are worse in deception of dajjal. Who God’s name would support Israel’s war on Syria?
June 3, 2013 at 8:12 AM
Ya Allah destroy the mischief makers and give us a Khalifa!!
June 3, 2013 at 9:21 AM
*Comment Removed by Comments Team*
tembeltospaa please consider this a warning
June 4, 2013 at 2:21 AM
Umm exactly what is moronic about getting a Khalifah?
June 4, 2013 at 11:44 AM
Very noticeable that comes with more disagreeing comments all get taken down. Typical , you don’t like an opposing opinion.
Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi
June 5, 2013 at 4:40 AM
We don’t like comments like “you are a moron” whether it is for folks that agree or disagree with MM content. We aim to make MM a safe place for discussion of issues. Even our staff have differing opinions on several topics so there is no “official” stance.
June 5, 2013 at 11:50 AM
I agree Aly, such words are unnecessary .
June 3, 2013 at 10:43 AM
I’m a producer at World Have Your Say on the BBC World Service. We’re keen to talk to people who are in Turkey and support Erdogan. Can anyone help?
June 3, 2013 at 4:27 PM
Hannah, I have many contacts in Istanbul (used to live there). You can email me at firstname.lastname@example.org.
June 4, 2013 at 10:03 PM
yes – i know some people. you can email me on email@example.com
June 5, 2013 at 6:58 AM
i currently live in istanbul and support erdogan very much. Let me know how i can help (firstname.lastname@example.org)
June 3, 2013 at 11:25 AM
Have to confess I was mystified on reading the news. I mean, I know that Turkey is technically secular, but even by Western media description of the new law (and this media usually takes every opportunity to somehow link shariah to any law proposed by Islamist governments and make it sound at least a hint of bad) I couldn’t see what was so bad about it. Even some other secular Western governments have similar laws curbing alcohol consumption either by curbing time, or curbing space, or both. I’ve not been to Turkey, but I’m kind of wondering what is daily life there – daytime boozing and drunk driving is like, normal for this many people?
June 3, 2013 at 12:31 PM
everywhere muslimz are combating with each other and n kuffar getting huge advantages of it…whats wrong with turkish people who have very progressive economy and determind govermnt in the history of turkey and a democrtically elected … culprits shud be treated harmly i wud say,
June 3, 2013 at 1:20 PM
Wonderful, precise, thoughtful, enriched article…
June 3, 2013 at 1:34 PM
Stop fighting each other and we as Muslim should unite each other. I agree with jef. They are happy when they see us fighting. I just don’t understand why people in Turkish don’t like the Islamization brought by Erdogan. It is good thing. All this while, people in Turkey had live in secular. Its time for a change. For a better Islam future. InsyaAllah :)
June 3, 2013 at 2:37 PM
I knew right away that these protests were connected to the banning of the sale of alcohol after-hours, and that told me everything I needed to know about the protesters themselves. However, the Turkish police should not have gone so hard after the protesters. They should have left them alone, for two reasons: 1. Leaving them alone is consistent with the practice of a confident democracy. 2. Attacking them only inflamed the situation.
June 3, 2013 at 2:44 PM
The format of this article was unhelpful. These tweets are not very meaningful or surprising and you could have simply outlined your points and arguments. There is also a use of guilt by association by linking both the protests and Syria to drunkards and Communists of who’s arguments you haven’t actually considered. Why are Turkish people actually frustrated with their government’s support of the Syrian rebels? Could the opposition to more restrictive laws concerning alcohol have more to do with a perception of arrogance in the way they were passed the the policy itself? We need to think of these matters critically and in a balanced way.
June 4, 2013 at 7:11 AM
reading turkish comments about this matter, is very strange. it is almost they have become so european and very uncomfortable with their islamic identity. of course i understand the need for threading on these matters sensitively because islam and islamization seems to be a very polarizing issue in Turkey and in order to coexist and prosper, one has to close one eye and move on. However Mr. Erdogan has increasingly not followed this ettiquete, upsetting the Turks who fear conflict may disrupt.
Unlike the States, or the UK where they and many non muslim countries where practising Muslims and Muslims can proudly identify and practise their culture under guaranteed protection. Turks do not guarantee this right to Muslims, it is okay to be a non practising Muslim, and the government and the law protects this, but to be practising, and to have the government mention anything that is akin to Islam, is almost like blasphemy by Turkish standards.
And in the age of the internet, and global network with the billions of Muslims around the world, Turks will have no choice but to face the remarks from what Turks may perceive as extremist and insensitive and lacking balanced opinions from their Western Muslim counterparts or their migrant practising brothers and sisters in the English Speaking world. And there will be a conflict of opinions and agendas because although we all share the same religion, it is becoming increasingly clear that English speaking Turks handle Islam in an European fashion, and all matters regarding it, careful not to shake the murky waters of balancing secularism, and Islam. Where else, the rest of Muslims, wonder why would Turks behave like an elephant in a china shop.. tittering about.
Either way, I find this fascinating merging of peoples interesting. And considering that it is the Turks who have to deal with this matter, I am sickened by how people overseas who really do not care or bother to understand anything about the Turks, want to use this matter to their political gain and manipulate the situation to suit their agenda. Also my worry is that if the Turks do not insulate and fix this matter for what it is – this may not turn out like the Egyptian Arab Spring, but may turn out into something like Syria or Libya. And I am very certain that there are plenty of foreigners who are keen to stage a military action there and will very easily so. May Allah protect and grant peace to the Turks who do not seem to understand what their role is in the ummah.
June 3, 2013 at 3:03 PM
This is a really poor piece. Beyond the factual inaccuracies, it has some pretty glaring analytical weaknesses. First, every mass movement will have different constituent groups. Yes, there are secular liberalists organizing in the protests. But the article presents no evidence that they are the sole, or even majority, voice in the protests. (In fact the article presents no evidence at all, since ten individual tweets are a really poor basis for a political position.)
And the author says he can’t see the distinction between protesting against Islam and and against what he misleadingly calls “those who are trying to change society to be more Islamic.” I’m sorry what he’s writing articles for public consumption if he can’t understand the difference between a more Islamic society and the inscription of a certain interpretation of Islam into the legal framework of the state.
June 3, 2013 at 3:40 PM
Please point out these “inscriptions” of Islam into law. Lets get to facts
June 3, 2013 at 4:07 PM
1. Can you please point out the factual inaccuracies?
2. There are hardly any women who wear hijab (the majority of Turkish women) There are hardly any from the rural Turkey (the majority of the population) and there are hardly any religious people. that every movement can be heterogenous however here are just SOME of the proofs that the majority are secularist elite:
3. Secular liberals such as yourself keep trying to pretend that you do not resent Islam or Islamic values but simply “an interpretation of Islam” as if all your anger is essentially over one school of thought taking precedence from another. Why not admit the truth?
Hind Pauline Thompson
June 3, 2013 at 5:44 PM
I agree that it’s inappropriate to base a political position on 10 tweets. I would join a protest if the only park in my capital city was going to be destroyed and replaced with a shopping mall, particularly if it included the bulldozing of old trees. There’s nothing outlandish about that, and Turks are known for wholeheartedly defending what they believe is right.
I’m surprised that this article tries to suggest that Erdogan is some kind of saint, when he is far from it. Of course Turkish women should be able to wear the hijab and I support restricting the sale of alcohol. But before this article was published, the author should have taken a look at Erdogan’s routine human rights violations. To start, his regime constantly harasses, tortures and murders ethnic Kurds. Talk to the thousands upon thousands of Turkish political refugees who are survivors of torture, and then rethink publishing an article that insists Erdogan represents Islam well.
June 4, 2013 at 5:38 AM
Are you saying the commi-secularists, who ruled before Erdogan, were any better towards the Kurds? At the least Erdogan is trying to move towards peace relative to previous military regimes.
June 7, 2013 at 12:11 PM
Not to mention, Erdogan has improved the situation with Kurds considerably compared to the previous Secular/Kemalist leaders.
June 3, 2013 at 5:32 PM
It’s happening everywhere…from Turkey to Bangladesh. But, no matter how hard those secularist try to stop Islam, how large they are in number, failure is their destiny. Allah will make his religion victorious.
June 3, 2013 at 5:41 PM
does the moderation tells the comment writer why they didn’t post this comment?
is it because of the length of the post?
June 3, 2013 at 7:07 PM
Some comments get stuck in moderation it should be up now.
June 3, 2013 at 6:19 PM
Yes, Erdogan is perfect, I am sure the ban of media and blocking phones and internet connections with jammers does not contribute to the sea of misinformation. People are so happy with their lives and government. There is no problem in Turkey, just conspiracy!! Photos are alllll photoshopped!! Everybody hates Islam in Turkey. jeeez these secularists…. They are the only problem in Turkey..
People who bought that post also bought this comment too. PERIOD!
June 3, 2013 at 6:28 PM
I live in the United States and have been following this from day one. I receive my information about the riots in Turkey from RT news and Aljazeera along with YouTube videos. CNN and the other American news agencies are not covering it so well. Many people watching will always lean a little towards the little man (the protestors) and when they see the police use SO MUCH tear gas and water canons it is inevitable that most public opinion will lean towards the protesters. It is indefensible for a water canon to be used on a person just standing alone on the street, even if that person flips the police off. So while you may be correct in stating that the protestors have a different motive for the riots, I believe that police abuse of power will only cause World opinion to lean to the protestors. The fact that the prime minister says “We will investigate” is a bunch of crap. Just today we see videos of the Turkish police with their numbers covered over with tape, how can anyone justify that?
June 3, 2013 at 10:51 PM
I agree that the police response aggravated the situation
June 3, 2013 at 7:04 PM
This is not a matter of Islam but a matter of democratic rights. please don’t attempt to analyze an event without proper knowledge. all 10 tweets you present shoe how superficial you are on the subject.
To my mind, a true believer uses his/her mind to understand deeply. Your mind is your gift. Use your gift wisely
Muhammad Wajid Akhter
June 3, 2013 at 7:32 PM
The democratic right to do what exactly? Overthrow a democratically elected government? …
June 3, 2013 at 8:36 PM
My sister lived in Turkey for two years, doing foreign study…
She speaks the language fluently and has many Turkish friends, both “secular” and “religious”.
So consequently, I’ve turned to her to ask her qualified opinion about what’s going on there.
From what she has told me, based on extensive knowledge of the socio-political situation in Turkey
and an aggregation of input from her diverse group of friends(some of whom are political scientists), what’s going on is essentially what the article’s author says: Kemalist secularists along with some anarchist, liberal and socialist groups are basically fomenting these protests to unseat Erdogan or scare other parliamentarians to trigger a “no-confidence” in their parliament, so they can have early elections.
Even many, if not most,secular Turks, their allies, etc., both involved in the protests and not, admit this. It is not about a park or shopping mall. That’s simply a pretext. They had been searching for an issue to galvanize around, and for whatever reason this struck a chord. The ultimate goal IS to unseat Erdogan and his government though.
So, that is her informed analysis.
That being said, some of the comments on this article have been ridiculous.
Some nuances need to be injected here:
#1. Turkey will NEVER institute a political Islamist order as it is conceived in the Arab world or Pakistan. That is a pipe-dream. To think this is even remotely possible, one has to be totally uneducated about what TURKISH political Islam is. Please read the writings of Said Nursi, Fethullah Gulen or any of Turkey’s Islamic leaders or scholars. The crux of their movement is to build up faithful Muslims from the GROUND UP, who will naturally incline to the ethics and morality of religion in their daily lives, including in politics or government.
They DO NOT support the imposition by force, from the top down, of Islamic Shariah as is popular in Arab nations or Pakistan. No single interpretation of Islam will be imposed by government there and any laws will ALWAYS be subject to the democratic process. Even the Islamists there subscribe to democracy…so don’t hold your breath for some theocratic political order to be imposed. The very idea is ridiculous if you know anything about Turkey. It will never happen, let alone with a “bang”.
Even religious Turks look at the Saudi Arabia, Afghanistan, Pakistan, Iran and the rest and say “no thanks!”.
#2 Some of these comments about what the Prophet(S) or Rashidoun instituted are totally simplistic and childish frankly. The Prophet did not institute ANYTHING with a “bang” and there are zero Qur’anic verses or hadith that endorse the imposition of religious values on an unwilling populace. The Prophet(S), like most Turkish Islamic scholars and politicians aspire to, built up HUMAN BEINGS and then imposed ethical/moral values on them when they were READY FOR IT.
Makkah lasted 13 years and even in Madinah things progressed at a slow rate. Often times, some things were not even legislated until the Sahaba outright asked for them, examples being Omar(r) asking for the banning of alcohol…which showed the community was WILLINGLY ready for such a thing.Lastly, even then the VAST MAJORITY of the laws were not ENFORCED…but left to individuals. The exceptions were a HANDFUL of hadd laws, and even then the Prophet(S) tried to be merciful and avoid imposing the penalties (please see numerous hadith where he turned adulterers away or forgave treason).
These Islamic political ideologies with delusional utopian dreams of enforcing religiosity and controlling each and every aspect of people’s lives are absurd. They do NOT work, especially when they are implemented using the technologically sophisticated intrusive powers of the ever present modern state. What a bid’ah if I ever saw one.
Every place this has been tried…Afghanistan, varying degrees in Pakistan, Iran, Saudi Arabia, Sudan, Mali…it’s a DISASTER. They ALWAYS end with totalitarian police states that engage in rampant abuse. There is not even a SINGLE successful exception, yet we have many Muslims insisting on implementing this.
Maybe it’s time we looked at what has made the Turkish model successful.
Get over our pride, egos. and grow up from these simplistic, childish ideologies and take a page from Erdogan and co. and see what they’re doing RIGHT…I mean I love these comical critiques and generalizations about Erdogan and the Turks…..as if we have gotten it so amazingly right in Afghanistan, Pakistan, Saudi or wherever that they should learn from US. Spare me…
Whatever they’re doing wrong over there, they’re doing much better than the rest of us
..and you know what? If we’re not willing to do this…if we’re gonna keep pushing this ideologically rigid form of government, then let’s at least be honest and admit: Yes…we want a totalitarian state that controls everyone’s actions, speech and even thoughts. Because that’s what it IS…and spare me any comments saying I’m against Islam or shariah or whatever…No. I am against a particular monopolized oligarchic theocratic totalitarianism that has been a failure in EVERY modern Muslim nation where it’s been tried…but unfortunately seems to be the preferred trend in Muslim nations outside of Turkey.
June 4, 2013 at 12:26 AM
By Golly, the most erudite and pragmatical answer. Sharia or Khalifa can NEVER work if imposed on people, it must be gradual by the people themselves.
June 7, 2013 at 12:15 PM
How can you gradually implement Shariah when the Kemalist/Secularist brainwashing happens from a very young age, where Islam is heavily restricted, where speaking negatively about Kemal can get you thrown in jail?
There’s no gradualism in this, anytime someone tries to gradually introduce the Shariah, they’ll just get attacked, or worst yet, hanged like Adnan (Turkish Prime Minister 1950’s, who allow the Adhaan to be in Arabic). Military coups are abundant, they are still influenced by Secular/Kemalist ideals.
June 5, 2013 at 5:10 AM
I have to (mostly) agree here – totalitarian systems as commonly practised in the Middle East tend to be unpleasant places to live in, and more or less permanently so, until the populace becomes used to their “oppression” (in quotes because that is a loaded term, thrown about far too easily these days) and accepts it as their way of life, and may even defend it.
On the other hand, violent revolutions tend to either repeat exactly what they sought to overthrow, but with the former revolutionaries running things, create a vacuum of leadership which greedy oligarchs are only too eager to fill, or just send their nations into total thirld-world anarchistic meltdown. I don’t think a violent revolution of the sort we have seen since the French Revolution of late 1700s has ever succeeded in the way it claimed it would. So if forced to choose, I’d choose a stable perpetual leadership which at least kept society stable enough to do anything important, than a succession of revolutions which promise “change”, “freedom” etc. but simply undo any work the previous leadership began to implement.
The underlying issue here, like with many of the problems facing modern nation-states, is the lack of cultural/ethno/religious cohesion. To be perfectly frank, you need all three to be fairly homogenous to create a society which not only keeps civilization standards high, but improves upon them so the next generation can focus on improvement, and not fixing whatever mess their ancestors left them. However, if you have a massive divide in any one, you’re asking for a nation of people who will use any excuse to start class wars, violent protests, etc., leaving your civilization resembling exactly what it is: a mixture of people who have nothing in common but short-term personal satisfaction, and leeching whatever they can from the current infrastructure before it all collapses. This is what is happening in Turkey (in this case the divide is in the religious/cultural direction of the society, with the added nugget of ethnic divide between Turks and Kurds/other minority groups), and in many, many, modern states.
June 5, 2013 at 12:23 PM
the quran sunnah have already been revealed you are not allowed to implement the sharia gradually the hudud have to be implemented all at once, Do you believe in some parts of the Book and disbelieve in other parts? Whosoever does that would be subjected to humiliation in this life and a severe punishment on the day of resurrection.”
June 3, 2013 at 9:23 PM
In the USA in many [Christian] areas alcohol is still banned.
As the nation became more liberal, the non-alcohol areas became less and less.
I grew up in a non-alcohol area of Texas. Unfortunately that changed and now
the liberals enjoy that vice [among many now legal vices/abominations.]
June 3, 2013 at 9:36 PM
True, Erdogan is not perfect but who is anyway. But what he did to Turkey today is 100x better than previous govern. Kamal ataturk era was a sham, full of illusion, back then Turkey was not even close to a 3rd world country. Come on, wake up!
June 5, 2013 at 4:41 PM
How can you even think that Ataturk was full of illusion? You don’t know what you’re talking about at all. He did more for his country than most other political leaders have ever done. He succeeded against imperialist forces with a broken economy and broken people. He greatly, greatly increased education levels and made one feel proud to be Turkish. He established Turkish democracy! That’s what the protesters are protecting as Erdogan has systematically tried to take away the right to think and speak freely.Since Ataturk it is tradition for Turkish youth to fight against such injustices.And how can you as a religious person think Erdogan is any good? He’s resorted to violence against innocents, even children. Non-protesters have been targeted and beaten as well.
June 4, 2013 at 1:50 AM
A friend of mine is supporting the protesters and falls for all these lies sadly. The most shocking thing I heard from him is his comparison. He didn’t compare Erdogan with Mubarak etc. He went all the way and compared him with Hitler. I’m German and I can say, that neither Mubarak, nor Assad nor Gaddafi could be compared to him. All of those together wouldn’t even make a piece of hair of Hitler.
I make Dua for my misled friends.
June 4, 2013 at 5:43 AM
I would just ask him, can you please list all your problems with Erdogan
I can bet you that whatever he or she lists, you can find that done by other leaders of democracies. Leaders are far from perfect, in fact they will be quite horrible in certain areas. But we have to keep the overall picture in mind.
June 4, 2013 at 2:32 AM
Well, the khilafah is supposed to start up again in Syria.
Imagine guys,even if it doesn’t in our lifetime,at least we’re witnessing what leads up to it!But we gotta do the two d’s: donate and make dua.
Unfortunately it’s not a high school girl’s business to be fighting in Syria.
Thanks for clarifying this issue.However,after scrutinizing the article and comments,I have to say that
1. Erdogan is not a pious leader.but he’s good enough at the moment
2.i find it dangerous to label all the rebels as anarchists,communists etc. I don’t know,maybe it’s a result of studying history,but when it comes to the word “communist” pple freak.so much bad stuff has happened because of pple accusing others of being communists.
Allah please,please fortify and bless this umma!we depend on You and we are almost at our weakest.it’s time for the Umma to rise again…
June 4, 2013 at 5:41 AM
Need to make this comment again:
I think we have to be careful about this notion of gradual sharia’ization. Erdogan has made no such promises neither has he implemented any legal reforms to move towards this. All his legal reforms are related to social issues that have parallel in other democratic and secular societies. For example, allowing hijab is a straight-up freedom of choice issue. Curbing alcohol is a social issue.
When we link Erdogan’s changes to some underlying conspiracy to go to complete Islamic law, then we are basically agreeing with the commi-secularists who are making this contention.
I am not judging whether this is good or bad. My point is let’s not shove hypothetical motivations down Erdogan’s throat. We are playing into the hands of his enemies!!
June 4, 2013 at 11:18 AM
You are absolutely correct and I wholeheartedly agree.
Not only does critiquing Erdogan for not going “far enough” or introducing a codified classical shari’ah play into the hands of his enemies…but it is also a profound misreading of
political Islam itself in Turkey. Political Islam in Turkey is COMPLETELY different from most Islamic groups in the Arab world or South Asia.
They do NOT seek to impose a top-down theocratic state.
It is more about reversing secularist extremism in terms of freedom of religion, especially in the public sphere, and about ENCOURAGING faith among people through PERSONAL EXAMPLE, and hoping that will have a positive effect on all areas of life.
June 4, 2013 at 6:40 AM
Just messed up with the comments, Muslims have become such a weak entity. Totally lost, going 100s of different ways, where is the UMMAH-concept? Some say it is Islamization, yet it is wrong. Some are of the view gradual Islamization. Others are in other direction…. So much confusion among the people of ISLAM, yet Islam is clear, its steps are clear, its demands are clear. This is the problem:
The Prophet would say on the day of Judgment:
“Oh Allah, Rab, my Ummah Left the Qur’an.” (Qur’an)
June 4, 2013 at 7:33 AM
Oh turks ,are you crazy , we wish if we had half your Erdogan
June 4, 2013 at 7:59 AM
I wish as a Pakistani-American, the same for Pakistan. Even 25% of him would be good! We had a chance with Imran Khan (maybe not the politician in league of Erdogan but sincere in league), and squandered it.
June 4, 2013 at 11:25 AM
I will gladly 2nd or 3rd that!
As an Afghan-American I would trade Karzai’s entire kleptocrat cabinet and the warlord assembly and all of the terrorists for one of Erdogan’s fingernails.
I love some of the outright comedic slanders, generalizations and critiques of Erdogan and the Turks here…calling them “brainwashed”, “Europeanized”(as if that’s inherently an insult”), and so on and so forth.
Yeah..as if we’re doing such an AMAZING job in Afg, Pak, Egypt, Saudi or wherever that those “lost” Turks should take some pointers from us.
June 4, 2013 at 9:58 PM
I really wonder, how do you see Erdogan from outside of Turkey? Why do you think that he is a great man?
Because of his religion? I’ll tell you what, he is not religious as you think. Did you know that his son, Ahmet Burak Erdogan, hit a musician (Sevim Tanurek) with his car after he consumed alcohol and caused her death? And the real victim here found 8/8 guilty in that case. Did you know that Erdogan’s nephew got caught with 50kg of hashish, and he didn’t face any consequences because he claimed that he was the smoker, not dealer. Aside from the obvious question of ‘how can one consume that much hashish?’, there is also the obvious fact that ‘He got away with it, because he is the nephew of Erdogan’. Did you know that the recent bombings in Reyhanli (which is just about 70 km’s away from my hometown) were already known by the government(and possibly arranged by them)? This is proved by official documents, and authorities confirmed that these were genuine documents. Tell me please, what kind of Muslim is this man? This man’s family consumes alcohol and drugs, this man is highly responsible for lost lives in Reyhanli, this man almost legalized rapes, this man…
Aside from his religion, you may say, ‘He improved the economy’. Yes, on papers; but in reality, we know that every inch of our country is sold to foreigners. He stopped production, he sold everything/everywhere, soon, Turkey will be a very poor country because of this “great” leader that you speak of but actually know nothing about.
There are lots and lots of reasons I can count aside from those, but I have much more pressing matters to attend to; such as, trying to help the people wounded/hurt/killed by this “great” leader’s police.
June 5, 2013 at 5:01 AM
Actually Erdogan’s personal life and faith is his business. If Erdogan were James and did exactly the same things he has done, I would equally be supportive of him.
All I see from the outside looking in, is that Erdogan has started rooting out extremist commi-secularist philosophies that banned religion from the public sphere. Not state-religion, but religion as practiced by everyday people according to their own choice.
From what I see from outside, is a progressive Turkey, an economic giant. Almost all Western countries allow foreign ownership, and none of them have passed out because of this. I dont think you will find a good economist who agrees with your contention that there is little but positive in the economics. P.S. My family flew with Turkish Airlines for the first time ever… never would have happened with the pre-Erdogan Turkish Airlines poor reputation.
From what I see from outside is a Turkey that has become the leading place to tour, for its beauty and stability.
From what I see from outside is a leader who was elected democratically and who has taken Turkey from being on the margins of geopolitical clout to the center of it.
Being on the outside allows us to see a version of the country that is free from the internal biases that people have.
And please don’t exaggerate on the situation. One person has been killed and many injured on both sides. I agree police has been heavy-handed, even the prime-minister deputy admitted it. But the protesters haven’t been angels either!
June 5, 2013 at 1:16 PM
Honestly from the outside looking in, and looking at Europe as a whole from the outside.. Turkey looks way more attractive economically and politically compared to the rest of Europe.
For Turkey to waste this era of political strength and economic boom for some ridiculous internal political power struggle is shameful. To be frank, the world (especially your Muslim brothers and sisters worldwide) knows that Turks who purposely create an anti-Islamist issue and publicize their “cause” on the web to create global uproar are trying to bring instability to your elected government. And this effort of slandering the image of your government and creation of rumours to purposefully create a bleak image of what is happening in Turkey, is really doing nothing for Turkey as a whole, in fact it just serves to tarnish and destroy the confident image of strength and stability, that many foreign investor had of Turkey in the past few years.
However, right now, reading Turkish comments and Turkish news, is like watching Turks digging their own grave, and listening to Turks rationalizing their self destruction. They seem to hate where they are right now politically and economically. I assure you that many European countries undergoing massive financial crisis will gladly trade places with Turkey, so it is painful to watch and listen to Turks complain and immolate themselves for a silly cause.
It is sad. But since the Turks are soooo self assured about their logic and that whatever they are doing now is the right path for them. And so, we pray for them. Maybe you are. Only Allah knows. But to ask us to support what is going on and the behaviour of some Turks. I don’t think you will get the support from the ummah. Because no matter how secularist try to create an evil depiction of Erdogan, Muslims are unlikely to support the “greater evil”- so to speak.
June 4, 2013 at 9:18 AM
This is brilliant, keep it up!
June 4, 2013 at 5:14 PM
Here you can see “Anti-capitalist Muslims” group entering the park, and the crowd cheering for them. They are chanting “A Muslim cannot support oppression/cruelty.” https://www.facebook.com/photo.php?v=10151459845066818
About the article. Fact of the matter is, the article begins with a lie and just adds more and more lies. You can read any statement by the protestors, and see that the protests weren’t about “trees,” but it was about living spaces being taken away from citizens, illegally and anti-democratically.
In addition, the “2 billion trees” is, at best, a misrepresentation that counts flowers as trees, if not a blatant lie. If you do the calculation, you would see that this requires a 57,000 people army, doing nothing but planting trees 10 hours a day 365 a year. There is no such army.
June 4, 2013 at 5:22 PM
The second tweet is a clearly biased and wrong comment from a political commentator in the US? How fair do you think it is to base your opinion on a biased comment?
The third tweet, from the way it is written, is meant to provoke people. You can check that the account she took the screenshot from has a strange username and it does not exist anymore, which could ring some bells. But even if someone really made these horrible comments, this is clearly an individual statement, and is not shared by any of the protestors. You can watch the video to see that the protestors welcome everyone and they respect hijabis and Muslims, or you can just follow the tags on Twitter and see that this has nothing to do with hijabis or Islam.
The fourth tweet is from “4 Oct” The protestors gathered now are not interested in Turkey’s Foreign Policy, but in internal affairs.
Now about the fifth tweet, Mustafa Kemal was not a well known “drunk.” I am not sure what that even means, but if he meant drunkard, that wasn’t the case either. The reference made by “We are all grandchildren of the drunk” is a reference to statements made by Mr. Erdogan earlier this week, calling the founder of his country a “drunkard.” The chant is meant to state the protestors loyalty to the founder of their nation, despite insults made by the PM.
The seventh tweet is just complaining about internet’s nature. It is something protestors are also complaining about.
The eighth tweet is, again, misrepresentation. It is true Turkey has no more debt to IMF, but Turkey’s foreign debt has been increasing, and IMF was the lowest interest debt.
It is true statements like the ones in the ninth tweet are not the best, but SultanAlQassemi is not a representative of the Turkish protestors, and is probably not even related to them.
The statements by the author are purely subjective, and are based on such weak foundations. He is not speaking the truth and he is not giving right information about the situation in Turkey. The truth is, the protests now are mostly about mistreatment of people by their government. At least three people have died during the protests, two of them directly from police brutality. As Muslims, we should follow this hadith from Bukhari [3:43:624]:
“Narrated Anas: Allah’s Apostle said, “Help your brother, whether he is an oppressor or he is an oppressed one.” People asked, “O Allah’s Apostle! It is all right to help him if he is oppressed, but how should we help him if he is an oppressor?” The Prophet said, “By preventing him from oppressing others.”
June 5, 2013 at 4:48 PM
Very well said and good points. The article is full of misi
Mustafa Kemal Atatürk
June 4, 2013 at 9:14 PM
Bigots. Erdogan is a puppet of U.S. and an elected dictator. It is not about green, we are defending our rights to live being free. Most of the demonstrators are combined by educated part of the population. We are tired of being insulted by Erdogans swears to Republican values and Atatürk. Erdogan is dictating how many childrens woman have to born and how many years they should nurse! He is very ignorant. He wins the elections only because of using islam. Türks do not want to live in moslem religious law country.
June 4, 2013 at 10:55 PM
I’m deeply disappointed that my fellow Muslim would support such violence against non-violent protest. This article is scrapping the barrel for such petty excuses to align Fascism with Islam. Do not divide the people of Turkey with prejudice. This is not a Religious war, this is about Greed of building shopping mall on sacred grounds and the anti-democratic and violent response to non-violent objection.
June 5, 2013 at 11:44 AM
And there we have it ladies and gentlemen:
Mustafa Kemal Ataturk “Turks do not want to live in Moslem religious law country”
Mohahma “This is not a religious war, this is about greed of building a shopping mall”
When you protesters figure out what the real reason is behind your actions – get back to us. Till then, leave the rest alone.
June 6, 2013 at 3:02 PM
This piece puts all points very well:
June 5, 2013 at 6:16 AM
I fail to understand the psychology of our fellows in turkey. Erdogan is democratically elected PM,as the most of the nation supports and vote for him & his party. Look at your economy now and 10 years ago.. Turkey’s economy is now in top 10 biggest economies of the world with $2Trillion and still these so called people are protesting… Do they not realise how US and Israel is trying to implement NWO (has already done so in whole middle east) and only muslim country standing is Turkey. People are so naive, even if someone has differences they have to learn how to live together in peace & harmony..
June 5, 2013 at 8:44 AM
Assalamu alaikom from Turkey, they hate Islam in Turkey so They want destroy Erdogan and muslims in Turkey with the support of international powers…Muslim people of Turkey are with Erdogan…they know that they can not win any election so they want to terrorize Turkey…you will see in elections…
June 5, 2013 at 4:51 PM
99% of the country is Muslim. What do you mean that they hate islam? They are muslims themselves. How are they terrorizing the Turkey? Maybe you mean the Police??
June 6, 2013 at 2:58 AM
Also your name CAPULCU means “looter”….. you want to terrorize country as burning cars, buses, shops….you know that you can not win election…in a time your life you did not defend hijab, islam…now you defend alcohol…and Asad
June 6, 2013 at 3:37 AM
I knew you were going to say this. I am happy you fell for it. Didn’t expect you to be original. As you know the PM called soo many people teachers, students, workers, Retired people who are peacefully protesting a couple of capulcu(which means looter) this is what the pm said for all these people. So it became a thing for protesters who are deeply upset with this to call themselves in a humorous way capulcu while educated university graduates, students and teachers are the majority of the protesters it is funny to think they are actually capulcu, You can find more about it everywhere online. This just shows how we choose to protest using peaceful options such as humor. These people are peacefully demonstrating the police is causing the disturbance.. So we so called capulcu’s educated thinkers are protecting your rights too. We are for freedom so we did get upset when they ban hicap in universities. We are not for restriction we are for freedom and human rights. Democracy doesn’t only mean election.
June 6, 2013 at 4:21 AM
We saw your peaceful actions…. Millions of our country was looted by you…. please do not mention about peace and humor…also we has seen asad flags with you… we know your peace…
June 6, 2013 at 5:28 AM
Let me tell you about our Peace,
Our Peace do not promote and it is against the Media censorship.
It is for freedom of speech and freedom of belief.
it is about freedom of being the way you are,
If the protesters are being the one who are causing trouble.Then I ask you why the media was censored? What is the government so scared for people to see on their Tv in Turkey?
Maybe it is because the police is even attacking the medical help centres and volunteer doctors trying to help the wounded?
June 6, 2013 at 6:33 AM
I think your Turkish language has proplem….there is no media cencorship…your channels like ulusal halk…CNN turk countinue to promote violence ….
June 6, 2013 at 8:12 AM
I grew up in Turkey, studied uni in Turkey and native in Turkish and don’t understand why you choose to ignore the bare fact that police is brutally attacking innocent people.
So when 2 channels choose to ignore censorship and choose to cover probably the biggest events since the democracy was established, you call this promoting violence?
We don’t want more polarization in Turkey. We stand for everyone’s rights. Police brutality and ignorance is not enough to stop the democratic vision that has been implemented by Ataturk long ago and will be secured by the youth of this nation.
June 6, 2013 at 8:47 AM
You killed a police today…and threw a young from the brigde ….are you happy for peace activities….
June 6, 2013 at 9:26 AM
How many people did police killed so far? And how many innocent kids they beaten up hospitalised left blinded? How many doctors did they attack? Medical centres? How many homes did they throw tear gas inside? This is a violation of human rights. Why aren’t you paying any attention to those so many that got severely attacked?
We do not promote any violence activity. We are sorry for any body that got hurt. The escalation of violence is not because of the public who is outside protesting. It is PM, his provocations and the violent police interference makes the violent scenes. There is not a single violent scene when the police choose not to interfere so brutally.
And please don’t blame people that you don’t even know with horrendous claims. Don’t polarise the country more. Be united and respectful for the people to raise their opinion.
June 6, 2013 at 9:39 AM
Are you Muslim, Capulcu….
June 6, 2013 at 2:38 PM
Are you Muslim, Hasan? As a religious person, my heart goes out to anyone unfairly injured, this being the majority of the protesters and bystanders. Not the brutal police or this so called ‘Muslim’ leader who doesn’t seem to care about the thoughts or well-being of a huge proportion of his people.
And by the way, the police man was killed by ACCIDENT. He fell off a bridge while pursuing protesters. http://rt.com/news/turkish-police-officer-bridge-309/ It was a tragic accident and was NOT the fault of the protesters, unlike the 3 deliberate deaths and 4,000 injuries of protesters done by the police. Also, many protesters have been cleaning up the damage done by the police. One example- http://live.wsj.com/video/turkish-protesters-reconvene-in-gezi-park/27F6AAB3-8AD2-4DB6-8513-A8E0610DFDEE.html#!27F6AAB3-8AD2-4DB6-8513-A8E0610DFDEE So much for that terrorizing Turkey claim…
June 7, 2013 at 1:55 AM
M. Leyla…i ask this question to CAPULCU…you know that you answer that question…is he or she a muslim….
June 7, 2013 at 3:49 AM
Why are you so curious about it? Why you try to label people. Who are you to put people in categories? This is what we stand against for. As you see every body is fed up with your racist and blindly religious chant.
June 7, 2013 at 4:36 AM
You want to destroy all islamic heritage in our beatiful country…now Hijab (headscarf) is banned in Turkey…you did not and do not say anything about it…you miss old days to prison religious people …kill kurds and ban their languages…
Erdogan and his party gives freedom to this country…. we muslims fell more free…Kurds fells more free they can speak their language freelly…now state has a Kurdish tv and opening new university with Kurdish…
*This comment was edited by the MM Comments Team in order to comply with our Comments Policy*
June 7, 2013 at 2:07 AM
you have a lot of terrorist organizations with you…you know that they burn buses and kills police and innocent people….please take distance with them….
June 7, 2013 at 2:10 AM
they drink alchols in mosques and they looted another mosque also…http://www.timeturk.com/tr/2013/06/07/eylemciler-imami-tehdit-edip-camiyi-yagmaladi.html ….
Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi
June 7, 2013 at 5:47 AM
Dear Hasan, capulcu and others on this thread:
I think the conversation has gone past the point of beneficial discussion and turned into name-calling and accusations. This forum is here to serve for discussion of issues not trying to bring the other down. Thus, further continuation of your “converstion” is requested to be discontinued.
Comments Team Lead
June 5, 2013 at 12:12 PM
no muslim country will be succesfull and live in harmony until they return to the Sharia of Allah and his rasool “Have you seen those (hypocrites) who claim that they believe in that which has been sent down to you, and that which was sent down before you, and they wish to go for judgement (in their disputes) to the Taaghoot (false judges, etc.) while they have been ordered to reject them. But Shaytaan wishes to lead them astray. And when it is said to them: ‘Come to what Allaah has sent down and to the Messenger,’ see they hypocrites turn away from you (Muhammad) with aversion.” [al-Nisaa’ 4:60-61]
June 5, 2013 at 12:27 PM
I am astonished at your blindness here……..’no muslim country will be succesfull and live in harmony until they return to the Sharia of Allah and his rasool’
Show me one muslim country living in harmony & muslims not killing each other !
June 5, 2013 at 1:24 PM
precisely there are very little muslim countries practising sharia right now hence all the chaos and bloodshed.. hence all the instability. the ones that are quietly practising are the ones that are extremely wealthy,stable and peaceful (even for their non muslim residents) and for the sake of maintaining peace and not permitting naughty people to strike trouble there.. we muslims will not publicize their names and keep them secret, like every good thing should be. :)
June 5, 2013 at 1:36 PM
Are you all male here ?
The only sharia complicit countries living in your sort of harmony are Iran & Saudi, where Islam & sharia do nothing for women.Men are free woman are slaves.
In fact to a civilised person they are a disgrace.
How anyone can promote sharia is a complete mystery to me.
Ruling by fear is not what life is about.
June 5, 2013 at 7:24 PM
I think you should study Islam first, before talking about who complies to Islam and the Sharia. And honestly, do you know what is the Sharia? You seem to be as lost about it as Rush Limbaugh, Fox News and friends. Therefore, please revert to your friendly neighborhood mosque, and learn about the Sharia, Islam, Qur’an and Sunnah and maybe some basic Fiqh, Aqeedah and also Sirah and also some Tassawuf while your at it and Arabic, otherwise just watch a youtube by Yasir Qadhi on Sharia before you form your judgments about which national judicial systems are compliant or not, as you seem confused.
Also your other assumption of supporters of Islamic Sharia being all male couldn’t be further from the truth. :) Peace.
June 5, 2013 at 1:08 PM
unfortunately most Muslim country have abandoned ruling by what Allah has revealed hence why their is chaos in muslim lands if they were to implement the sharia properly no doubt these country would prosper
June 5, 2013 at 5:09 PM
This is my message to you.
1. You must stop your campaign of violence, murder and destruction in Turkey. You have burnt cars, attacked policemen, destroyed shops, destroyed ATM machines, destroyed cars, spread lies and propaganda on the internet and have called for foreign intervention in Turkey’s domestic affairs. Some of these Kemalists have also called for the killing of Muslim woman who wear the headscarf as mentioned by secular Turk Ceylan Ozbudak.
You are trying to impose your dictatorship on Turkey by overthrowing the democratically elected government of Turkey.
You do not care about the 70% Muslim majority in Turkey but believe that the secular elite should decide how Turkey is run.
2. 3 out of the 4 main parties have disassociated themselves from these protests:
AKP which has 49% (just under 50%)
MHP (Turkish nationalists, greywolves) 13%
BDP (Kurdish nationalsits), 4th party in the parliament.
AKP and MHP together means around 63% of the votes then add the BDP so parties representing at least 2/3 of Turkey are against these violent riots.
3. Kemalists you follow a French-inspired version of militant secularism or laicism which has a militant hatred for religion and any display of religion in the public sphere, even if it be personal and not affecting other people.
You are damaging the Turkish economy and the livelihoods of the vast majority of Turks who wish to live in peace and feed their children.
Lastly your anti-Turkish ideology and violence and terror will not dislodge a democratically elected government.
If you continue with this violence and campaign of hatred you will provoke a reaction from the silent Turkish majority and you will see greywolves include those of Alperen Ocaklari (BBP party youth wing) coming to take you on to defend ordinary Turks and their property.
End your anti-Turkish campaign, you have been warned.
June 5, 2013 at 5:27 PM
Murder has been committed by the police. Ethem Sarisuluk and Abdullah Comert has been killed by police brutality. Check any source.
Tonight, protestors are observing Mi’raj. They have been distributing food and sweets to everyone, including the police. Even atheists in the Istanbul city center has stopped their celebrations due their respect for Islam, yet your policemen has been oppressing and beating people on this holy day everywhere else in the country.
The protestors are not there following any ideology. Why do you lie implying they are Kemalists? Why do you say they are trying to do things that they clearly aren’t? Honestly, there isn’t a single sentence in your word that is not a lie. It is impressive.
Aren’t you ashamed of yourself that you are using Allah’s Islam for your personal interests and political power? Don’t you think this is corruption to the fullest extent? Don’t you fear Allah when you lie like this?
Muslims were there, wearing their headscarves. See the video in comments. They were applauded. No one did anything except praising them. No one is trying to impose a dictatorship, or even overthrow the government. They are there to be heard. Give me one reputable source you base your accusations on.
You guys just can’t stop lying, can you? BDP has been supporting the protests from day one. MHP, has been making statements against police violence. Why do you lie?
Who is damaging Turkey more? The ones responsible for this violence who caused 4000 injuries, 3 deaths and 10 blind people in a week or protestors who are gathered for their rights and living spaces?
End your anti-humanity, anti-Turkish and anti-Islam campaign right now. You have been warned.
June 6, 2013 at 3:21 AM
Mehmet, Turkish people do not support you… these guys were killed by your terror organizatıons to increase your terror…we Turks know you very well
June 6, 2013 at 5:57 AM
Watch this video over and over again. This is how Ethem Sarisuluk was killed by the police. You probably didn’t get to see this because of the censorship on media, so I will not blame you.
I am merely a servant of Allah, and a son of the Turkish nation. Of course they don’t support me, but I support what is right. And one thing I know is that you are not a speaker for the Turkish nation, so stop acting like one.
June 6, 2013 at 6:35 AM
Brother…Your surname shows that you are not Turkish,,,,so do not lie about Turkish nation
June 6, 2013 at 8:20 AM
His name is clearly Turkish. Why do you even take people not Turkish if they are for freedom of expression and democracy. On the contrary this is the vision this nation is built upon.
June 6, 2013 at 8:49 AM
ic means son…and not a turkish title….how does he say i am a son of turkish nation and defend looters
June 6, 2013 at 8:56 AM
Saraybosna’da, Gezi Parkı eylemcilerine destek gösterisine katılan Türk vatandaşına Boşnaklar tepki gösterdi.(AA)
June 6, 2013 at 1:41 PM
Hasan kardesim, ben Turkiye’de dogup buyumus bir Turk evladiyim. Fakat sen karakterini belli ettin. Yanlisin ortaya cikinca boyle tahkir etmenden ciddiye alinmaman gerektigi ortaya cikiyor. Kusura bakma bundan sonra sana cevap vermeyecegim. Saglicakla kal.
My dear brother Hasan, I am a Turk who was born and grew up in Turkey. But you showed your character. When I showed you where you’re wrong, you tried to insult me, and this proves that you are not to be taken seriously. Please forgive me when I don’t respond to you from now on. I hope you will be in good health.
June 7, 2013 at 1:53 AM
Mr. Mehmet, you know that these ones…Turkish people, Gaza, Mecca, Bosnia…all muslims are with Erdogan with their prayers… so you can not destroy our country…
June 5, 2013 at 7:55 PM
You may be right that the majority of protesters are not militant-secularists/Kemalists, Communists or anarchists. No doubt many of the people, if not the majority, are probably sincere and protesting certain issues like the neo-liberal economic model, public space zoning, and democratic input. But, brother you CANNOT deny there are many individuals who are co-opting and hijacking this protest and making it a secularism vs. Islam debate. There are way too many quotes, interviews and news stories making the ’rounds confirming this to deny.
Just yesterday I was watching “Democracy Now” , which is an ultra-liberal newscast in the US, and a Kemalist professor and a Socialist activist framed the issue as one of secularism and were spouting one lie after another accusing Erdogan and the AKP of wanting to ban alcohol, etc . These are hyperbolic and exaggerated lies. The man wants to ban SELLING alcohol after 10pm and around schools and mosques to crack down on football hooligans and underage drinking. Sorry, but these are the types of lies and exaggerations the Kemalists are on TV spouting 24/7.
We are not IN Turkey. All we can do is try to read as many news reports that come out and make a balanced, informed judgement based on what is AVAILABLE to us…and to most of us outside of Turkey, it seems to us that the Kemalists are hijacking your protest with lies and one hypocrisy after another. If the protesters in Turkey do not like that, then they should get more organized and draw media away from these extremists and make clear that the Kemalists, Communists and anarchists do not speak for everyone…just as the AKP party and some of their dogmatically loyal followers do not speak for all religious Muslim Turks. As of now though, that is NOT happening and the “face” of the protests outside of Turkey are Kemalists and communists who are regularly not only insulting Turkish Muslims, but Muslims around the world…and naturally that will result in resentment and backing their opponents…
June 5, 2013 at 9:34 PM
The issues addressed by the protests are not directly related to Islam. I am trying my best to follow the stories from every outlet and I believe I have a good picture. You are admitting yourself that you based your opinion about the movement based on a “report” by a “biased” source. I would encourage you to look deeper in this issue, from better sources, if you want to form a more clear picture.
If you follow the movement closely, you’ll see that there are people from every ideology and the majority of the protestors are apolitical people, not communists nor Kemalists. The significance of this movement is, even though there are many people there with different opinions, they were united with their objection to government’s attitude and policies. Part of these policies include government’s intervention into people’s lifestyles. However, this is only a small part of the authoritarian actions by the current government which caused these protests.
Mr Erdogan’s usurpation of power from the Istanbul Municipality and disregard for the preservation laws on the issue of Gezi Park, his civil-war-like threats and insults to peaceful demonstrators, Police’s extremely violent backlash, and finally, media’s deafening silence to all that was happening were all signs of anti-democratic and despotic tendencies of the government, and caused the protests attract huge masses. If you look at the issues from this perspective, it will be easier to see it is people standing up for their rights and democracy.
Finally, I will talk about secularism vs. Islam debate. There is such a confrontation, but–at least inside Turkey–it is sourced from news outlets that has been sided with government for commercial interests, and I don’t believe in their honesty for very valid reasons.
To give a general picture, the most reputable Islamist newspaper in Turkey, Zaman, has been sympathetic and supportive towards the protests and admitted that protestors have valid points. However, other news outlets that are owned by people who have financial ties and interests with the current government, attempted to use Islam for their own interests. This is bad enough, but they also tried to do this through lies.
Throughout the protests, police attacked protestors extremely violently and there were many people injured (more than 4000 including 10 blinded). One night in Besiktas, where police attacked people especially brutally, a mosque’s imam opened its doors to doctors so they can treat the injured people inside. Next morning, several newspapers made news that protestors “smoked” and “drank” inside the mosque, in a clear attempt to insult the protestors and bring up the questions you are bringing up, but the pictures didn’t show anyone smoking or drinking. Later, the Imam and the doctors denied these accusations, and the videos became public from inside the mosque, showing how there were so many injured people, and how selflessly these volunteer doctors were treating them.
Today, the Imam invited the protestors to the mosque for Mi’raj when the protestors went there to distribute food and sweets for Mi’raj.
This is the Islamic perspective to the issue from inside the Turkey. The Muslims who are witnessing the protests first hand see the government’s cruelty and the protests’ legitimacy, and side with protestors. However, the group who doesn’t see them and are not inside the movement are misguided by, sorry to use this term, “evil” news outlets who are trying to use Islam as a means to secure their interests. This article, I believe, is part of such an attempt, and I have uncovered the lies throughout the article in my earlier comments.
Thank you for your constructive point of view, brother. Assalamu Alaikum wa Rahmatulah.
June 6, 2013 at 3:27 AM
Erdogan has increased Turkey’power in all fields…. we were dogs of Israel…we are against to Islamıc Ummah…Now we are with Islamıc Ummah….so anti islamic powers in Turkey and in The world hate Erdogan …and want to destroy him….
Before that they killed our prime minister ADNAN MENDERES (he changed AZAN from Turkish to Arabic in Turkey) …ALSO They destroyed NAJMADDEN ARBAKAN but their plan do not work for ARDOGAN…tURKİSH people know you very well now
June 6, 2013 at 4:27 AM
You cannot defend the indefensible. The police action as shown in video and photographs was way way over the top. In a democracy they would be prosecuted. Erdogan has a choice. Time will tell.
June 6, 2013 at 6:42 AM
Now a police got martry….
June 6, 2013 at 7:14 AM
His wife was 5 months pregnant…..
Afrika Mutlu Kıta
June 7, 2013 at 8:58 AM
1. this goverment is the most anti-ecological government ever. They invested on mining, highway construction, dams, hydroelectric power plants, nuclear, coal burning power plants with their development vision.
Talking with the discourse of goverment’s regeneration of trees is silly, since a forest is more than the collection of trees, thus counting the number of trees, that the government planted next to the highways is not a fair comparasion. Gezi is a symbol against all these, since it is the most-obvious illegal project.
Instead of repeating what prime minister said, it is enough to look at the collective energy consumption of Turkey within last 10 years, and deforestation.
2. it is true that there is secular concerns. Prime minister said overtly that we are one nation, we have one religion. Which is anti secular and discriminating from any aspect. He referred to the orders of religion while defending the new alcohol regulation.
3. there are people who are anti-muslim, and anti-kürd as well, however they are not dominating the crowd. you might look at it from a different angle that Park turned to be a collective therapy for their nationalist views.
4. 70 percent of the crowd is participating to a protest for the first time in their life. I think it is enough how much of them are communists. Communist party is not even one percent of the crowd.
5. Very complex way of arguing. I can at least say that the capacity to govern is not related to consumption of alcohol. It is more related to have a democratic mind. Neither Kemal nor Erdogan have this rationality. People are against the antidemocratic regulation on alcohol. It is antidemocratic since a government can not intervene my choices as an adult. It is not about if a drinker should govern the country but if we are a state of rights. The protesters do not care who drinks or not. They are after their rights to drink.
6. unfortunately, the new regulation is not referring to any scientific study but religious concerns. The government defends their regulation with desire to raise a muslim youth. This is not defensible from any point of view. The countries which has these type of regulations suffer from alcholism, which is not the case for turkey. You might easily find and compare the consumption of alchol per person in a year.
7. it is true that there had been misinformation which protestors fought against it. Moreover, eventhough it is true that the photo is wrong, there were couple of thousand people who passed the bridge.
8. what you claim is partially true. there are many others who defended AKP’s actions. But their authocratic attitudes on such projects are indefensible.
9. noone claimed that in the crowd. they asked for resentment of government for the use of violence agaiinst its own public for 6 day continiously.
10. “The future belongs to Islam.” Who has right to own the future. it does sound very antidemocratic. The slogan of gezi is “future for everyone, not only for man, sunni, muslim, turkish, heterosexual, capitalist, autocratic mentality” future for kurdish, alevis, ateists, muslims, women, ecologists. your future does nt look very colorful(especially not that green) and we will keep working for a better future, in which noone dominates the future
June 9, 2013 at 7:35 PM
Taking 10 selective tweets that fit a narrative and attributing them to the cause of thousands of people is irresponsible journalism. The site has not published any articles that comes close to examining the cause of the proliferation of the protests and the heavy handedness of the government to quash them. (For those who are interested: http://stream.aljazeera.com/story/201306032324-0022801)
Muslim Matters, which basically boiled down the motives of all the protesters to them being spoiled brats who don’t want any curbs to their freedom. And prime minister seems to echo that sentiment and continues to publicly lambaste the protesters. I think Turkish society, whether they agree with the protesters or not, is taking notice. The prime minister’s statements only make him look clueless on the situation. And regardless of their size, some of the concerns raised by the protesters are legitimate and are shared by a lot of the Turkish people, which is why the protests don’t seem to show any signs of dying down.
Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi
June 10, 2013 at 4:24 AM
Please feel free to submit an article presenting the other view point. We are always looking for multiple view points on the same subject as there is no “single” viewpoint on things. http://muslimmatters.org/submissions/.
June 10, 2013 at 6:16 AM
It’s funny how some Turkish secularists come here and try to convince Muslims here in favor of the violent anti-Ak Party protests. These Turkish secularists, especially the Kemalists, almost invariably hate and scorn Arabs in particular and Muslims in general, especially dark-skinned Muslims. Probably they don’t care about the opinions of my Muslim brothers and sisters here, and what they care about is the opinions of the white European and Americans who may read this page. May Allah protect Turkish Muslims in particular and Muslims in general from their evil intentions and actions.
June 10, 2013 at 6:30 AM
As a pious Muslim Turk, I can assure you that 70 per cent or more of the Turkish people are against the protests. Only the hardline Kemalists and communists voting for the Kemalist CHP (Republican People’s Party, founded by Kemal Atatürk himself) and several communist parties are in favor of the protests. The protestors injured hundreds of policemen and even murdered one. The policemen may have sometimes used more force than necessary, but overall, they were the side trying to maintain law and order and defending themselves.
June 10, 2013 at 7:06 AM
Mr. Mustafa Rumi, congrulations for your explanations…
June 10, 2013 at 9:12 AM
To the moderator: As-salamu alaykum, this website loads so slowly. Do you know why is that?
Also, when I described myself as a pious Muslim above, I didn’t mean I am a wonderful righteous Muslim deserving the jannah. What I meant is that unlike some newly emergent, confused “secular Muslims (!)” very common in Turkey and somewhat common in the rest of the world, I believe in all principles of Islam in its entirety, both the Quran and the authentic sunnah and try to practice them to the best of my ability. I wrote that way only to separate myself from the newly emergent, confused, secularized Muslims.
May Allah protect us Muslims of Turkey and our Ak Party from all these slanders and attempts at coup d’etat and attempts at our estrangement in the world so that we can be eaten alive by the predatory capitalists and their communist and Kemalist allies who have been organizing these riots.
June 10, 2013 at 8:00 PM
The West and Islamophobic parties are afraid that Turkey will become a hardline Muslim state because of the growing awareness of Turks to implement the Sharia Law. Thus they, the Western and Islamophobic nations, are also sponsored this protest. A normal protest for a park wouldn’t go to anarchy like this. Turks should defend their country, other else it would become the next Lebanon, the next Egypt, the next Libya, or worst, the next Syria. Turkey is the successor of the last Islamic Caliphate in this world, the greatest Ottoman Caliphate. Don’t let this so-called “Turkey Spring” destroy your nice country.
May Allah protect you and your fellow countrymen.
Aly Balagamwala | DiscoMaulvi
June 11, 2013 at 5:37 AM
We are having some technical problems that are being rectified. Thank you for your patience.
June 10, 2013 at 2:29 PM
1. Mustafa Rumi brother thank you for your informative posts.
This thread and lots of other forums and pages through out the net are being hijacked by Kemalists with their lies.
2. I know Kemalists very well and I know that they are very anti-Islamic.
a: They call anyone who tries to practise Islam as “Arap” (Arab but with a negative tone as in “dirty Arab”), “Yobaz” (backwards), “Koylu” (peasant).
They are indeed very anti-Arab (I am not an Arab) and the Kemalist media all the time publishes articles and stories ridiculing and insulting Arabs to promote hatred of Arabs (Arab media and Arabs in general do not even talk about Turks).
b: In some areas of Istanbul Kemalists will give dirty looks to girls in Hijab whom they call “Turbanli” (an insulting term coming from “Turban”, male dress) and even one of my sister’s friends had her feet stamped on in a bus in a secular area of Istanbul.
c: Kemalists are enemies of Islam and the Turkish nation (Turk Milleti).
d: Ataturk and Inonu themselves banned Hajj (one of the 5 pillars of Islam and ordered in the holy Quran).
3. Kemalists are complaining about police “brutality”. How many people have died? Around 3-4 in total.
Ataturk massacred maybe 20,000 or 50,000 men, women and children in a town called Dersim (now called “Tunceli”) in 1937-38.
The Dersim massacre is blamed on Ataturk’s no.2 Ismet Inonu as Kemalists say Ataturk was not active (i.e. he was drunk, he died of alcoholism). However Ataturk’s own daughter bombed Turkish men, women and children in Dersim from a fighter plane.
Ataturk did not know his own daughter was on a fighter plane bombing people?
i: Either he knew and was involved in war crimes.
ii: Either he did not know and was thus an ignorant fool, who could not control his own daughter.
Aside from Ataturk, the Kemalist military in the 80s and 90s destroyed 3,000 Kurdish villages and ethnically cleansed 2 million Kurds from the south-east.
How many villages has the dictator Bashar Al Assad destroyed?
Nothing like that.
4. For decades Kemalists have been murdering, torturing, imprisoning and oppressing Turks, Kurds and many others.
They teach their children to hate Arabs (“Araplar”) with passion as dirty, backwards and as traitors.
5. The vast majority of Turks are against Kemalists and their crimes.
6. So far Turkish nationalists have not been actively involved in these riots, the MHP have not officially endorsed it and have said they will not participate in any demonstrations where PKK sympathizers are present.
The BBP (Buyuk Birlik Partisi) have called for calm, restraint and have said there may be foreign involvement.
So far Turkish nationalists have not physically confronted the Kemalists but this may change:
i: In Rize, police had to stop some Kemalist provocateurs from being lynched by Turks.
ii: In Adana there have been clashes between Kemalists and pro-government Turks.
iii: Alperen Ocaklari (BBP) have not yet announced that they will helped Turkish police to defend ordinary Turks against rioters, Kemalists and terrorists.
However the Turkish people are losing patience and they may explode against Kemalists.
Kemalists I urge you to stop your war against Turkey and against the government chosen by the people. Express your views peacefully and do not burn, destroy and kill. You have been killing, torturing for decades. Now is the time to finally stop.
May Allah help our Turkish brothers and sisters.
June 24, 2013 at 11:24 AM
Thank you for your contribution, Adam; however, you have a big mistake somewhere. I don’t know where you got that ethnic cleansing idea and ethnic cleansing figure of 2 million Kurds about 1980s and 1990s Turkey, but it’s utterly false. If any people were ethnically cleansed in southeastern Turkey, it was not the Kurds but the Turks of the region. Of course, Kurds also suffered a lot because of the war between the Kemalist Turkish nationalists and the Marxist-Leninist Kurdish nationalists.
The Marxist-Leninist and Kurdish nationalist bandit organization PKK (who I prefer to call the National Communists) have Kurdified the region through oppression and exile of not only Turks but also anti-PKK Kurds as well. More particularly, they forced a lot of Kurdish villagers to move to the cities of the region or to Istanbul and other big cities so that the PKK cannot get from those villagers voluntary or involuntary logistical support –If the villagers didn’t want to help the PKK, they would simply be killed by the PKK for supposedly betraying the Kurdish national cause and collaborating with the government. Both the Kurdish majority and the Turkish, Arab and other minorities of the region suffered a lot between the Kemalists and the Marxist Kurdish nationalists.
Erdogan has been trying to get the judiciary to investigate these crimes, both those committed by the military itself and others.
In these demonstrations, the PKK has given partial support. Actually the PKK and its political wing BDP pretended not to support the demonstrations because of the Kemalist majority of the protestors, but actually some of BDP’s MPs tried to take advantage of the situation and incite people against the Ak Party. Actually some 15 per cent of the protestors have been found to be Marxist Kurdish nationalists of the PKK-BDP line. Sometimes Turkish and Kurdish nationalists fought each other during the demonstrations, but overall they tried not to pursue the fights too further and concentrate their energy to their common enmity against the majority of Turks who are not Kemalists, socialists or communists but vote for the Ak Party.
Caution: In Turkey, socialists and communists are far far better-to-do than “conservative Muslims”. When we speak of Turkish socialists and communists/Marxists, don’t think of working class people at all. It’s a weird irony of Turkish politics. The reason why such well-to-do or, often, filthy rich people profess socialism and communism is simple: The need to position themselves against Islam politically, and a superficial adoption of the leftist ideology is the most convenient way to do this.
So, please don’t compare 80s and 90s Turkey to the most murderous Asad regime again. The real situation was far more complex, and the Marxist Kurdish nationalists were as culpable in the situation as the Kemalist army officers and their supporters.
June 24, 2013 at 11:29 AM
Oops I made a mistake somewhere above. The second sentence of the second paragraph should have been:
“The mostly Kemalist army officers forced a lot of Kurdish villagers to move to the cities of the region or to Istanbul and other big cities so that the PKK cannot get from those villagers voluntary or involuntary logistical support –If the villagers didn’t want to help the PKK, they would simply be killed by the PKK for supposedly betraying the Kurdish national cause and collaborating with the government.”
As I already said above, in this way the Kurds of the region were squeezed between Kemalist army officers and Marxist PKK militants.
June 24, 2013 at 11:39 AM
One last note: Around 50 per cent of Kurds as well as 50 per cent of Turks currently seem to be Ak Party’s voters. Kemalists among the Turks and the Marxists (PKK-BDP people) among the Kurds are the major evildoers.
Also, remember that a small but influential percentage of both Turks and Kurds and other ethnicities such as the Zaza are Alevis, a branch of Shiites who are heterodox even from a Twelver Shiite viewpoint. The Alevis mostly collaborate with either the Kemalists or the Kurdish Marxist bandits, depending on their ancestry. The current head of Atatürk’s CHP, the major Kemalist political party in Turkey, is an Alevi of Zaza origin himself but spuriously claims that his distant ancestors were actually Turkish. And Zaza or Kurdish Alevis have prominent places in the Marxist-Leninist Kurdish-nationalist PKK-BDP movement.
These more northerly “Alevi”s aren’t to be confused with the southern Alawites. Alawites who rule Syria are present in Turkey too. Because of their support for their co-religionist Asad, some of them have even been harassing Syrian Muslim refugees who have fled from Asad. But the Ak Party has mostly been successful in protecting the refugees from them.
June 11, 2013 at 4:48 PM
Here is a good analysis of what is happening on turkey ( I think):
June 23, 2013 at 7:11 PM
Assalamualaikum. I’m Indonesian but in my opinion the motifs of protest is Greening, Alcohol and Opposition. Opposition is the main theme of the protest,
May Allah gave hidayah to their protester, to stop their brutality against laws and democratic-civilian government :)
June 28, 2013 at 10:19 PM
First of all, I detest that fact that anyone supporting the protests have automatically been labelled as “Kemalists”. That is just despicable. Until today, I didn’t even know who or what Kemalists were. It is just so convenient to label someone you don’t agree with as anti-Islamic and just dismiss their concerns. Why does an opinion other than yours have to be drowned out just because you don’t agree with it?
I am supporting the protests because I believe in the right to free speech, which includes the right to protest. I also believe that people who are protesting have legitimate concerns about the power wielded by Erdogan and the direction the country is heading. His response to the protests have been heavy handed and disproportionate. And he has been dismissing any opposition to his rule as being anti-Islamic, much like how the state of Israel dismisses any opposition to their policies as being anti-Semitic. Is it just me or does anyone else find it strange that Prime Minister of a country of 70+ million people is taking a stand to build a mall? Also, instead of learning a lesson or two from the protests in Brazil, he is equating the protests in Turkey and Brazil to same foreign influence. (http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2013/06/22/erdogan-turkey-brazil_n_3483639.html).
One commentator said that only 30% of the people in Turkey are supporting the protests. Even if that number were true, which I am very skeptical of, when did the voice of the minority not matter?
June 29, 2013 at 5:21 AM
The freedom of speech was increased by this government. And this is what the protestors are against. Their own freedom of speech was also increased. But they don’t want the freedom of speech to increase for the Muslim majority too. They want us to remain shut up as in the pre-Ak Party Kemalist regime. They are not protesting for their own freedoms. They are protesting against our freedoms, about the fact that they can no longer insult us day and night in the media, through military and police violence, through the hijab ban and other such practices. The high judiciary, who are supporting the protests, have actually not stopped their hijab ban completely. They are still “resisting” the Ak Party’s gradual attempts to end the secular fascistic hijab ban completely. What a heroic resistance, huh? Since you support the protests and their fake resistance, you must support the pro-protestor high judiciary’s “heroic struggle” to maintain the hijab ban.
And it’s funny that you hate the fact that the protestors are being called Kemalists. They define themselves as Kemalists in Turkey. Some eighty per cent of them and some 95 per cent of their supporters do so. That’s why we have to tell the truth and state that, as they themselves say so, they are Kemalists although they try to paint a different picture to the foreign press who (rightly) see Kemal as a dictator. Only a small minority of the protestors and an even smaller minority of their supporters are from fringe communist groups. The Kemalists are definitely the overwhelming majority. By wanting us to hide this fact, you are trying to get us to lie. No, we will not lie for your sake. We will tell the truth.
Freedom of protest does not include the right to overthrow the recently elected government by way of violent protests, by way of calling on the military to make a coup d’etat and by way of an international secularist smear campaign, nor the right to attack the police with molotov cocktails balls, with sticks, with sledgehammers, with nails in them and to desecrate mosques and write communist slogans on them. These are only some of the violent and barbaric crimes that the the protestors perpetrated. We will resist. We will not readily give our country back to the Kemalist junta backed by the CNN. The US will not be able to have the secularist military make another secularist coup d’etat in order to reduce our livelihood and our freedoms unless Allah wills otherwise.
June 29, 2013 at 9:10 PM
Everything is contrary to the facts on the ground and just reiterates what I have said about labeling. The fact that the Prime Minister and his supporters think that the protest are being fueled by outside influence just goes to show how out of touch they are to what is happening. The Prime Minister even equates the protests taking place in Turkey with those taking place in Brazil, something that the Brazilian government and its people completely rejected. Protesters in Brazil have not been tear gassed, shot at and beaten, even they have turned violent. If a regime cannot handle people expressing their opinions in public, they do not deserve to be a regime.
August 3, 2013 at 8:02 PM
Arbab, you said ” If a regime cannot handle people expressing their opinions in public, they do not deserve to be a regime.” By your own logic this would mean the regime created by Mustafa Kemal Attaturk did not deserve to be a regime, lol.
Pingback: MuslimMatters' Top 13 Most-Read Articles of 2013 | MuslimMatters.org
Pingback: Turkije: meer updates en info | Ravotr