how the world sees america

Mixed Reviews for U.S. from Erdogan's Old Home

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ISTANBUL - Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan shakes President Bush’s hand on the grainy television screen in Hodja Yashar’s Café on Yumak Street in Kasimpasa, Istanbul, just minutes from the flat Erdogan inhabited as a teenager. The old men light their cigarettes to celebrate.

“Miracles can happen!” says one of them, smiling as the anchorwoman reports that America will increase its support of the Turkish government in its battle against Kurdish guerillas in the southeast.

Another man who sells cleaning cloths to car mechanics is less optimistic: “I don’t expect anything from America.”

And so their banter goes back and forth, from praise for the U.S. to deep suspicion. They settle on neither.

They’re all well over sixty, with deep coughs and creased skin. Kasimpasa as a whole is an aging community of shopkeepers and laborers, many of them living off government checks of little over two hundred U.S. dollars per month. It’s not much, the men say, but they get by.

“When a place grows out of poorness, people help each other get by, and [they] become closer and closer,” explains the café owner Hodja. People on Kasimpasa’s windy, sloped streets know each other’s faces. They know who they can trust and who they cannot.

Erdogan_Bush.jpg
After meeting Bush, Erdogan says he's "happy."

“We are allies of America,” says Hizir Balci, “but America cannot be trusted.” He’s a well regarded local council member who speaks with authority on both local issues and global ones. For years, Balci has watched the big powers play games on the TV set hovering above him, from the cold war to the Iraq wars. He and his friends talk about it all over tea. After all the years, he says he harbors a deep suspicion of the involvement of foreign powers in Turkey. But he has faith in Erdogan’s Justice and Development Party (AKP).

This Islamist party has done remarkably well since its birth in 2001. It has appealed directly to the grassroots, which other Turkish parties have so far resisted. AKP organizes at the local level and provides social services in what some consider a populist fashion. This kind of local involvement helped the party win 34% of the popular vote in 2002 and 46% in 2007. The party claims to be moderately conservative and pro-Western, but its opponents fear it aims to undermine Turkey’s secular character through the gradual Islamicization of the country.

hodja_yashar.jpg
Hodja Yashar owns his eponymous cafe.

Kasimpasa natives are visibly more pious than residents in other parts of the city. Most women on the street wear the headscarves, and a few wear a full black chador, though younger girls do neither.

“We have always been true to our faith here. This is nothing new,” Hodja says. “Now there is more exposure to the world. It is more democratic, and we can display our faith…like in America. That is why Erdogan has sent his children, and his daughters, to study in America: so they can display their faith.”

This is the good of the U.S. -- their acceptance of religion in public. But as a power on the global stage, and even as Turkey’s NATO ally, they say America is still not to be trusted.

"The main motivation of all foreign forces is to divide Turkey," Hodja says. As proof, he recounts World War I history and the Treaty of Sevres, which threatened to carve Turkey into pieces and divide it between its allied neighbors.

Erdogan_Flat.jpg
Top left is Erdogan's old flat in Kasimpasa.

Balci chimes in: “We are allies of America [but] they are still...tricking us." He believes the U.S. is supporting the PKK as punishment for a 2003 Turkish parliamentary vote that blocked the U.S. from opening a northern front in the war in Iraq. He believes the U.S. arms the PKK to help the rebels carve out a Kurdish state from Turkey.

The day before Erdogan’s meeting with Bush he said, “We are one with America in the war against terror. But Americans do not realize this.”

Two days later, Erdogan left the White House with a smile on his face, saying cooperation was forthcoming. Bush called the PKK the common enemy of Iraq, the U.S. and Turkey. Did that make these men any more hopeful?

“America says the right things, but will it act?” asks one of the men. Hizir coughs, and replies, “We’ll wage war anyway, with or without America’s permission.”

But then Hodja, the owner of the store, steps in. “Let Erdogan decide,” he proclaims. “If he is happy with Bush, I am happy.”

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Comments (70)

spidon:

@ Victoria,

Why are you contributing to a discussion you do not want to participate in?
I have been asking very valid questions about important issues that you will not even acknowledge. Instead you make idiotic accusations to avoid answering.

Talking about Turkey's human rights record and its censorship (Article 301) are important and central issues to the discussion.

****

I have found a simple definition on this in the following link:
en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Article_301_(Turkish_penal_code)

"Article 301 is a controversial article of the Turkish penal code, taking effect on June 1, 2005, and introduced as part of a package of penal-law reform in the process preceding the opening of negotiations for Turkish membership of the European Union (EU), in order to bring Turkey up to EU standards. It makes it a crime to insult "Turkishness". Since this Article became law, charges have been brought in more than 60 cases, some of which are high-profile. Büyük Hukukçular Birliği ("Great Jurists Union") headed by Kemal Kerinçsiz, a Turkish lawyer, is "behind nearly all of [301 trials]". Kerinçsiz himself is responsible for forty of the trials, including the high-profile ones."

****

I want other's opinion on this terrible law in Turkey.


Spiridon
Montreal Canada

VICTORIA:

spidon- its definitely human to avoid responsibilty for ones actions

my particular spiritual path is so staisfying to me because of specifically- the importance of taking personal responsibility.

i was simply asking you, what is responsible for your vehemence when it comes to turkey in particular?

even a direct dpecific question to you personally becomes a rant on turkeys evils-

is there anything else you can throw light onto/
your motives seems a bit imbalanced

i find it really difficult to believe that you, personally, care about the sexual restrictions on kurdish girls in villages in turkey.

spidon:

@ Victoria, November 8, 2007 11:26 PM

It would appear that Turkey is on her own here.

If and when the topic of other nations becomes an issue to be discussed, then we may discuss these nations. So far as I can see, the topic of discussion here is about Turkey and the anger expressed by the flag waving, undereducated, xenophobic masses that make up the Turkish state.

You are so quick to accuse me of hatred but you have the mirror turned the wrong way.
I ask you to consider all of the hatred spewed out by the Turkish elite, all the way down to the homeless Turkish illiterates; telling us how the Kurds, the Armenians, the Assyrians, etc, etc, deserve the wrath of Turkish discipline for not being Turkish enough.

---Article 301.

I am sure you will have a different opinion on the matter: your objections have been noted in the past on the topic and you need not further shame yourself with ignorance, but what benefit toward Turkey of anyone else, does the Turkish Article 301 have?

Is Article 301 a form of hatred toward change? How far from the brutality of the Ottoman period has Ataturk really taken Turkey? What is the present Islamist government doing to make democracy more transparent when it passes such insular laws that only serve to isolate Turkey from the rest of the functional world?

I will remind you that the only hatred shown anywhere is by Turkey against anyone and everyone, including Turks, who questions the ongoing ignorant and shamelessly illiterate Turkish elite. Article 301 is a clear example of this.

Do you care to comment on Article 301?

Do we need to talk about human rights again? I am sure anyone with an interest in Turkish denial can look at my previous posts for the link to THE HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH ON TURKEY.

Victoria, I am not alone in saying that the only hatred shown, is by Turkey against all others, including Turks that want to see Turkey mature into a real democracy.

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

VICTORIA:

who are you trying to convince spidon, the world at large or yourself?

and why?

to justify your own hatred of turks?

tribal loyalty to a country you no longer live in?

why do you hate turks so much?

if youre such a font of overwhelming compassion- you would have other injustices at your disposal to discuss, compare etc-
but you only have anger at turkey, and seem to want public opinion to affirm your own xenophobia against a nation-

im sorry spidon- i dont latch onto campaigns of hate
youre on your own here

spidon:

@ Zeynep Ucok November 8, 2007 5:06 PM

You are in denial my friend. Watch and learn.

And, it is all due to Turkey's dependence on brutality to subdue minorities.

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

Zeynep Ucok:

Spidon,

There is no Kurdistan. Watch your words.


spidon:

@ Victoria, November 8, 2007 1:23 PM

You should be putting some effort into acknowledging human rights as opposed to being in denial, or even worse, trying to disguise the fact that Turkey has a deplorable human rights record. You should also accept the fact that given the human rights abuses by the government and military in Turkey, groups like the PKK are thriving since they support the freedoms that the state is continuously undermining.

I wonder how long the Turkish government will be able to contain the need for the South East of Turkey to become autonomous, and thereby prevent further Turkish aggression and poverty in this region that has suffered too much and for too long.

****

You will notice the headline today:
Pro-Kurdish party calls for autonomy in SE Turkey
"ANKARA, Nov 8 (Reuters) - Turkey's leading pro-Kurdish party called on the government on Thursday to grant autonomy to the mainly Kurdish southeast as a solution to the violence that has plagued the impoverished region for more than two decades.

Nearly 40,000 people have been killed in the conflict since the Kurdistan Workers Party (PKK) guerrillas took up arms to fight for a Kurdish homeland in southeastern Turkey."

reuters.com/article/latestCrisis/idUSL08455562

****

Isn't time for Turkey to mature as a nation and admit to mistakes made, not only in Kurdistan but a long list of other peoples, notable among them, the Armenians, who were almost entirely wiped out of existence?

I think it is time! What do you think Victoria?

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

VICTORIA:

i read it the first 5 times you posted it

im not going to put more effort into accessing information than effort you put in to prove your point for you

worldblogger:

america is a great country

SPIDON:

Just for you Victoria,
the link to the HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH ON TURKEY:

hrw.org/doc?t=europe&c=turkey

Please copy/paste the above line into your browser and read.

Spiridon,
Montreal Canada

VICTORIA:

spidon-
your response to my posting a link-

"Thank you for pointing out (through your actions) that you are trying to prevent people from reading the violations of Turkey.
Your post Victoria is for the main page of the huge database on THE HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH."

you're seeing ill intentions where they dont exist-
relax spidon-

i just noticed that you never had the link,and gave one.

"Your post Victoria is for the main page of the huge database on THE HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH."


exactly- its actually a great deal more information than you've given.

i think anyone can figure out to type 'trukey' in the search box.
ive had it in my bookmark for a long time.

cantnakerous- im not turkish- i can tell you what modern means to me personally as an american- but i dont know if that is what you want.

you're welcome spidon
peace

Cantankerous:

Amar & Spidon:

Thank you very much. Very informative.

Amar, I'm looking forward to your latest post on underground clubs. [I'm preparing myself for a shock.]

Zeynep Ucok:

I have a question.
When the father Santoro was killed in Trabzon-Turkey last year, we all screamed out and walked with a saying in our hands: WE ARE ALL CHRISTIANS.

When Hrant Dink was killed, we again screamed out and we had pancartes: WE ARE ALL HRANT DİNKS AND WE ARE ALL ARMENIANS.

This is our soul.
They were our people.
The ones killed them are no humans. But clever enough to find and kick the softer and weaker parts to insult Turkey.

http://www.internethaber.com/images/news/26546.jpg

Now, we every day lose our children for nothing.
Can you tell me, any christian or any armenian did say that?

SPIDON:

@ Amar C. Bakshi, November 7, 2007 1:08 PM

I have to agree with you that the matter of modernity is a central issue in a discussion on the topic of change. In the West it is not so used today since it has implications of late 19th and early 20th Century art movements that attempted to envelope political agendas; often associated with the Communists and later the Fascists, often used by both simultaneously.

Modernity was considered to be the transition between pre-industrial and industrial periods, which encompassed scientific; technological; and social changes; thought at the time to be revolutionary in society. It was in a sense a way to re-write the Social Contract between rich and poor using the mutually beneficial practicality of science and industry.
In our cultural bias, we associate 'the modern' with a trend of thought that affirms the power of human beings to create, improve, and reshape their environment. Unfortunately, in the West our thinking is also skewed by our specificity of the term as related to the preindustrial to industrial periods and the role Communism and Fascism has played therein. We have seen through the affirmation of 'Social and Industrial Modernity' without the spiritual or ethical co-relevant changes, that the world has only become more dangerous and hostile. Often we have blamed the Communists for this since they adopted the term 'Modern' to signify their singularly positioned change. Germany too adopted the term to refer to the changes Hitler was making at the time and we dispensed with the term all together to compensate.

All this of course, is rather academic and invested with too many historical implications, hence, does not address the issue of true change. Similarly, attempts to use language (such as adopting the term 'MODERN' to connote change for the better) to mask intents by propagandists to the contrary are in clear evidence throughout history, including present day Turkey.

I will quote Cantankerous:
"What do Turks, or others from the Middle East, mean when they call their societies "modern"? The term appears to have a sociological importance that goes beyond the common meaning of the word."

In the case of Turkey, where history is being taught with such a filtered and self-serving bias, it is impossible to determine what the rate of change is from any previous point of reference. Since all previous points of reference are skewed to support the self-preservation of the state in transition from the difficult past of the Ottoman period, the matter of modernity becomes just another propagandist tool to point to change though no change is evident in the function of state.

Not to be unfair to Turkey, there have been many changes toward progress, but if we examine the expansionist modus of the Ottoman period in relation to present day Turkey's annexation of previously unheld lands, and the attempt to now invade Iraq for just the same purpose, we see similarities where Turkey sees 'modernity' and change.
Turkey refuses to accept responsibility of previous atrocities, ethnic displacements, ethnic cleansing, forceful assimilation of minorities, brutalization of special interest groups, etc...
Turkey also tells us that there have been lots of improvements since the Ottoman period where events we all agree happened (like the Armenian genocide), did not happen, and that the government is Islamist but of course, "secular". Even Erdogan is quoting an Islamic poem including the lines: "The mosques are our barracks, the domes our helmets, the minarets our bayonets and the faithful our soldiers..."
The Turkish military to this day dictates laws that are self-serving to the military elite, not unlike the Ottoman period.

Turkey tells us that the country is a "Modern" state. I am not sure we have seen much of an a trend of thought that affirms the power of human beings to create, improve, and reshape their environment in Turkey. We have seen a lot of propaganda attempting to persuade us that it is so, but the evidence that keeps Turkey out of the EU for over 40 years of continuous attempts by both sides, is clear on the matter that the country's actions do not reflect the propaganda.

The conclusion here is that the use of language, such as the use of the concept "Modern" is not a good gage for determining action cowards positive change.

I will not repeat the list of human rights abuses to substantiate my claims, out of respect for your efforts Bakshi, but for anyone who wishes to see the evidence can look in my previous posts for the link.

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

Adler:

To all:
It is really very easy to blame Turkey for human right etc. There is a German saying "Viel Feind, viel Ehre" it means "the more enemy, the more honour". The holiest human right is the life of a person. How many millions of human beings were killed in the last decades by the weapons made and bought by the western "civilized" culture? Is that no human right violation?

Zeynep Ucok:

When the Armenian writer was killed, we all cursed it. I was the one walking and crying with the thousands of people on the streets. For years I read Hrant Dinks writings poems etc. He was a very good man and he deserved living more than most of the Turkish people who have so comfortable life goning on. Just like any other country there are people provocates very sensual cases against their own citizens. There are Turkish people working against Turkish's.


Turkish management staffs are invaded. The scene that gets in to your mind does not suit our daily life. But everything is going worse. And there is nothing we can do. Existing government is very clever and played their cards on unlettered citizens or clueless citizens. Media is censored, people dont read and dont think whats going on. Turkish people just wish something better with the newest government. The story goes on and on.

Armenians killed too many innocent ones. Turkey have opened its sources about so called genocide days. We have nothing to be ashamed of! Come read and see really what has happend those days? ha?
Who cries gets the food ha? Also now Armenians have a really really significant percent of Turkey with ownership. Armenians living Turkey has really higher standards. Infact Turkey behaves minorities better! Search now how much they own from Turkey??


Last thing. Turkey never throw a nuclear bomb and cause millions of dead. -nagasaki.

Turkey never invade some place - in the word of bulding over- and kill, torture, take pictures of innocent ıraq citizens. We are not that cruel.

Our biggest fault: we have the worst big guys, presidents government for our presentation. We dont know how to fend our selves. With this big guys, presenting us, we will have worse day.

Amar C. Bakshi:

Cantankerous. That's a big, important question. I'll let some Turks weigh in, but my sense is the term "modern" suggests an embrace of science, new technologies and material progress. It implies a renunciation of certain more mystical sentiments, if you will, that explain the world in non-rational terms. Some take this to an extreme and denounce religion, but most use the word to emphasize the compatibility of "modernity" -- the things technology, science, rationality bring us -- with belief in a higher power, and spiritual convictions. But people use the term in any number of ways to advance certain agendas, in Turkey, and elsewhere. It can be used pejoratively, to undermine others, or used to call to light the ways in which material progress need not necessarily conflict with traditions and local ways of life.

SPIDON:

Thank you for pointing out (through your actions) that you are trying to prevent people from reading the violations of Turkey.

Your post Victoria is for the main page of the huge database on THE HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH. The one I am pointing to will bring the reader to the page that illustrates the Turkish problem. Please do not insult people's abilities and intelligence by suggesting that they are less capable than you are to copy/paste the link into their browser.

****

To anyone interested in formulating an objective and personal opinion on the matter at hand, a good place to start is by reading where the Turkish problems come from. Please copy/paste the line below into your browser and simply read the thousands of Human Rights violations by Turkey as listed by the organization HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH:

hrw.org/doc?t=europe&c=turkey

****

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

VICTORIA:

still havent mastered posting links?

http://www.hrw.org/

VICTORIA:

canadian nationalists?

ooo-

SPIDON:

@ Areen Ibrano, November 6, 2007 9:59 PM

Thank you for pointing out the difficult parts. You have done in such little space what would take many volumes and years of work to express.

Thanks as well to the straight forward, 'telling it like it is' way of Maxiths. Some shock treatment may be just the thing to get our Turkish friends thinking straight on the matter.

All of this will not replace an education, but it will do for now.

****

To anyone interested in formulating an objective and personal opinion on the matter at hand, a good place to start is by reading where the Turkish problems come from. Please copy/paste the line below into your browser and simply read the thousands of Human Rights violations by Turkey as listed by the organization HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH:

hrw.org/doc?t=europe&c=turkey

****

Spiridon
Montreal Canada


maxiths:

TO: OH NO,NO TO YOU!

COLD WAR MADE US ALL SUFFER!, TOURKEY WAS TAKING THE BREAD. (BILLIONS OF DOLLARS)AND WE WERE SENDING IT LIKE IDIOTS.

MEANWHILE KNOWING THAT THERE WAS MASS TORTURES, MASS EXECUTIONS, MASS GENOCIDES, WE WERE STILL SENDING A LARGE SUM FROM OUR OWN MONEY, IT'S CALLED, TAXATION! AND IN A SINFUL WAY WE KNEW THAT IT WAS WRONG, (DOES THIS REMIND YOU OF SOMETHING ELSE NOW?)

TURKEY THEN WAS SAVED BY US CAUSE RUSSIA NEVER LIKED THE TURKS ANYWAY, AND THIS GOES BACK INTO MANY CENTURYS, RELEGIOUS PROSECUTION AND NOT ALOWING THE RUSSIAN FLEET TO GO THROUGH THE BOSPOROUS.

DO YOU THINK THAT IF IT WASN'T FOR THE UNITED STATES TO PROTECT THE STRAIGHTS TURKEY COULD HAVE PROTECTED THEM THEMSELVES?. YEAH RIGHT! YOU FEARED THE NAZI'S SO MUCH, YOU LET THEM GO THROUGH WITHOUT EVEN PAYING AND YOUR SECRET POLICE WERE INFORMING THE NAZI COMMAND (GESTAPO) OF ALL BRITISH AND AMERICAN ACTIVITY ESPECIALLY IN INSTABUL.!!!

WISE UP GIRL, STOP PROTECTING EVIL!! NO MATTER WHERE IT IS.
THE GERMANS PAID THE PRICE IT IS TIME FOR TURKEY TO PAY TOO! AT LEAST WE SHOULD GET SOME SATISFACTION FROM OUR TAXES.

maxiths:

TO: OH NO,NO TO YOU!

COLD WAR MADE US ALL SUFFER!, TOURKEY WAS TAKING THE BREAD. (BILLIONS OF DOLLARS)AND WE WERE SENDING IT LIKE IDIOTS.

MEANWHILE KNOWING THAT THERE WAS MASS TORTURES, MASS EXECUTIONS, MASS GENOCIDES, WE WERE STILL SENDING A LARGE SUM FROM OUR OWN MONEY, IT'S CALLED, TAXATION! AND IN A SINFUL WAY WE KNEW THAT IT WAS WRONG, (DOES THIS REMIND YOU OF SOMETHING ELSE NOW?)

TURKEY THEN WAS SAVED BY US CAUSE RUSSIA NEVER LIKED THE TURKS ANYWAY, AND THIS GOES BACK INTO MANY CENTURYS, RELEGIOUS PROSECUTION AND NOT ALOWING THE RUSSIAN FLEET TO GO THROUGH THE BOSPOROUS.

DO YOU THINK THAT IF IT WASN'T FOR THE UNITED STATES TO PROTECT THE STRAIGHTS TURKEY COULD HAVE PROTECTED THEM THEMSELVES?. YEAH RIGHT! YOU FEARED THE NAZI'S SO MUCH, YOU LET THEM GO THROUGH WITHOUT EVEN PAYING AND YOUR SECRET POLICE WERE INFORMING THE NAZI COMMAND (GESTAPO) OF ALL BRITISH AND AMERICAN ACTIVITY ESPECIALLY IN INSTABUL.!!!

WISE UP GIRL, STOP PROTECTING EVIL!! NO MATTER WHERE IT IS.
THE GERMANS PAID THE PRICE IT IS TIME FOR TURKEY TO PAY TOO! AT LEAST WE SHOULD GET SOME SATISFACTION FROM OUR TAXES.

maxitihs:

SPIRIDON OF CANADA (1), MOHAMAD MALECK (0)

THE GAME IS OVER MALLEC, GET IT THROUGH YOUR HEAD, YOU ARE THE ONLY ONE (AND THE OTHERS LIKE YOU) RIDICULING YOURSELFS FOR SUPPORTING THE EVIL ONES!!!!

IF YOUR A PATRIOT, YOU SHOULD KNOW HOW TO DEFEND YOUR COUNTRY, BY SAYING THE TRUTH.

HOWEVER YOU ARE A NATIONALIST LIKE ALL OTHER FANATICAL NATIONALIST'S THAT DON'T KNOW WHEN TO SHUT UP!!!

TURKS ARE FEW IN NUMBERS, BUT WANT TO TELL THE WORLD THAT YOU ARE MANY, LIKE THE TOUPAMAROS IN BRAZIL. ONLY DIFFERENCE IS, THEY FOUGHT FOR FREEDOM EQUALITY,AND HUMAN DIGNITY, YOU ARE FIGHTING FOR YOUR MASTERS BELLIES HOPING THAT THEY WILL THROW YOU A BONE...

AMAR BAKSIS, REPORT ON ERDOGANS VILLAGE, IS SENDING GOOD HOPE,SHOWS A MAN WITH NO RESTRICTED BARRIERS, TOO BAD YOU HAD TO JAIL HIM TOO! AND WHO KNOWS WHAT THE NEXT SUPRISE WILL BE FOR ERDOGAN BY THE BOOGIE MEN.

alkan.levent@mynet.com:

third of two legs i wanted to say. and provided it is a normal birth, and date affirmed by home.

parents have better take notes for their relations and agriculture.

in Bursa Armenians were in Peace. sayin Basbakan, Bursa'daki Necatibey Kiz Meslek Lisesinin yanindaki kilisenin ibadete acilmasini istiyorum.

natikini MArkus Venedict, Anthuan Vartholomeos, Masukisofya Mutafyan atasin. ya da Bayezid'in Emirsultan'inin oturdugu kiliseyi halka acarim. Bursa'ya giren Uc Bacakli Biri Saygili Timur bile Varaka Bin Nevfel'den.

Yildirim'da bir tek Hirkali Sevgili oturur, o da agaclarin arasinda. Timurtaspasa da yerinde mukim. Cumhurbaskani Abdullah Gul Aksakalli Atasini Kocasini biliyor zaten. Fransiz Ataturk de LITURGY'den Kurt Turk anlasmasini saglamis olsa gerek. Avustralyadan gelen Keltleri yaralandiklarinda sirtlanip siperlerine birakanlar kimlerdi acaba? ben Gelibolu'luyum. Horon tepenlerden bekler misiniz boyle bir sey?

Onikiden sonra Balkabagi Oncesinde At Arabasi, FAdimenin Terligi Gokten Dusen Safinaz Kafali proto-kelt Eli Sopali Druid Musa torunu VARYAG VURGUNU "ya Var ya Yok" Kafali Tarabyalilar Cemiyeti de nerede bor varsa orada otursun, mesela Tunceli'ye gitsinler, radyasyondan kurtulup arinsinlar, dine imana gelsinler. meshur caylari da ariflerin okuluna gitti zamaninda.

bizimki kel basa simsir tarak, degerini bilene. Nasreddin bilirdi. en azindan koyunun ictigine maya caliyoruz ki insanlar golden yesin. sutunden ne cikarsa artik. yeter be! Suleymancilar da bir baksinlar kimin TApinagini yikiyorlar? biz bari iki satir soz isitip isleyebiliyoruz, Bitlis'ten okuyuculugumuz var.

ne mutlu turgum diyene.

alkan.levent@mynet.com:

and to ease my neck on the internet, let me put a note here. there are many Levent Alkan on google, economist, doctor, teacher, computer expert, one of them in relations with Russia on petroleum, and me with literature, i did not have a credit card and used credit card of a friend, i did not know that it was not permitted.

on the records, my birthday is 14 May 1973. 12x12x2 = 288 days that is 9 months 14 days. 288 days from the birthday on the records back to the first construction of this body is 2 August 1972. and i use 1 January 1971 too.

this opens the second door and makes two legs. with this date of construction, the planets are important.

alkan.levent@mynet.com:

http://www.classicsnetwork.com/uploads/eviolanlarulkesi.gif

soon, King of Suudi Arabia shall be in Germany and Turkey, after Vatican. i wish Prime Minister Erdogan gives the Custody of Muhammed to the King to take back to the Homeland of Muhammed.

alkan.levent@mynet.com:

Ebul Kasim is the original name of Muhammed. Muhammed is an adjective for "praised". Kasimpasa is where navy was once. Kasimpasa is a navy commander in the name of Ebul KAsim, praising.

in a formal phrase "Taksim'den Asagi KAsimpasa", which has an informal usage also, from the Church of St Anthuan you come to the Port of Ebul KAsim.

in this city, you study much so much that you are home, "cons tant ino polis", "with st anth stand this city".

who educated Muhammed, son of uncle of Muhammed's Wife, Varaka Bin Nevfel, was a nestorian christian.

halozcel:

Victoria,

You say *1)?*.
If you ask *Jihadist*,she can explain.
*The Fast Police* is *islamic SS unit* in Malaysia.*Their duty* is *observetion* people whether they obey *fasting* or not during Ramadan(the month of nightmare).Besides,you and your *Turkish counselor*/probably one of your neighbor) know very,very well what *Fast Police* is.

Saudia is a *kingdom*.Yes,right.But,but,but,that *Fear Kingdom* is based on islam and *sharia*.Do you know *Saudia's Flag*,what is written on the flag ?

Please,Dear Victoria,I please you to show me any *islamic country* living like *human being*,although some of them have sooooooo much money.

VICTORIA:

hi halozee-

1)?
2)no compulsion in isalm
3)its a kingdom
4)no, israeli ocupation
5)?? actually i algeria there was a protest against islamofascism last year with 10s of 1000s pouring nto the streets to protest terrorism
6) i dont know-
however, you're welcome to instruct me as to the benefits of alcohol on society
7) no, its a choice
8) also a choice

you know i dont argue with you haloz

i cant understand alot of your style of communicating- but i do try



6)

halozcel:

Victoria,

We have *clue*,we have *clue*.

Islamofascism is a *reality* from *islamofascist Malaysia* to Morrocco,in all over the world.
You talk about *slander* and *islamophobia* on Eboo Patel's thread.

1-*Fast Police* in Malaysia.Is it *slander* ?
2-Isnt there *compulsion* in Iran ?
3-Isnt there *islamofascism* in Saudia(homeland of islam)
4-Isnt there *islamic oppression* in Hamasistan ?
5-What about Pakistan,Bengladash,Algiers etc. ?
6-Erdogan forbidden *alcohol* when he was *mayor*,isnt it *intervention* to personal freedom ?
7-Isnt *headscarf* or *black cage* compulsion on woman ?
8-Isnt *five times worship(brainwashing) in a day* compulsion ?

Dear Victoria,
Could you show me any *islamic country* where *no compulsion* exists ?
Could you write any *islamic land* where people have *freedom* ?
Islam,Desert Cult,
Islam,Cult of Bedouin says *you are NOT free* 33.36

Yuk:

Don't know why people are so pissed at America all the time. After messing up their parts of the world they always ask for help.
I was in Nigeria a few years back and got asked by a native "Why hasn't America done anything to help us?" Incredulous I said,"What have you done to help yourselves." To which I got no reply. Figures....

Give me a break:

yea, Erdogan is smiling because he is returning to Turkey with a big fat check. As always works with "secular" States in the Middle East, Money talks and BS walks. Does anyone have information on what was paid out/agreed to? I'd love to see that posted or rather a link. It is unfortunate that the Sevres Treaty was not implemented then Kurdistan would be the jewel in the Middle East...Barzani and Talibani have demonstrated the propensity to make things happen and change in true Wilsonian democractic ideals. The realist subscribing military and its pawns the elected government won't change for decades...a sad story.

Erdogan is a Hottie:

Erdogan is a hottie. He has a good face, and a noble sort of carriage. I love his outside, but I'll never trust his country, his rule, or his religion. History--and the blood of the martyred millions who once lived in Turkey--beg me to beware. What he and his kinspeople think of my country means less than zero.

Areen Ibrano:

Turkey may be a democracy, but it certainly does not care about human rights or the status or treatment of its minorities. This is a country where Mein Kiempf was on the best sellers list, where a journalist was murdered in broad daylight for using the word genocide, where Kurds are tortured and killed for wanting speak there own language, which was only recently made "legal" by the government.

Much has been said on this thread about the pros and cons of Turkey. True, it has a burgeoning economy, a growing middle class, and is perhaps the most stable Islamic country in the region, and most important for the US and Israel, it does support the right of Israel to exist and prosper (even though it supports Hamas). I think the point of the article was that Turkey, even with all the progress it has made since Ataturk, is still stuck in the past, "The main motivation of all foreign forces is to divide Turkey," Hodja says. As proof, he recounts World War I history and the Treaty of Sevres, which threatened to carve Turkey into pieces and divide it between its allied neighbors". Its population still longing for the days of the Ottoman Empire, when Turks were rulers and obeyed no country, where the Turkish nation was by the Turks and for the Turks and no one else. What we are seeing now is a movement to regain that status, much like the Young Turk government pushed for during the Armenian Genocide and slaughter of Greeks, Assyrians, and other non-Muslim minorities.

Why would a country that claims to be such an ally of the West refuse to adopt western, or dare I say, tolerant ideals? Why is freedom of speech so threatening? why are all Turkish students in middle school, regardless of ethnicity, forced to write an essay claiming the Armenian genocide never happened? Why would speaking Kurdish be illegal? Why would invading a small country like Cyprus and occupying it for decades be acceptable, especially when ignoring countless UN resolutions? Why would denying a genocide that occurred over 90 years ago under a different form of government be so important that it would damage relations with a country that dares to utter the word genocide in government? All of these things are threats to power.

Truth, justice, equality, go against the very grains that make up Turkish power. Atatürk, the founder of modern Turkey, placed great importance on Turkish identity and stature. Turkey was for Turks and that is why he pushed the foreign allies out and decimated those who opposed him. Recognizing the armenian genocide, giving rights to kurds, allowing for speech are all threats to Turkish power because it may expose the truth that Turkey may have made some mistakes in its past, that it may be making some mistake now. Do Turks really want to discuss that? Some might, but most are clobbered by nationalists and muslim extremists as traitors and some are even shot and killed.

You can say what you want about other countries, America, the UK, Canada, Armenia, etc. they all have problems, some worse then Turkeys. But at least they tolerate debate and freedom of speech, at least they tolerate discussion on history and dont force their populations to swallow a version of history that is most fitting to extremists, at least they can admit making mistakes.

Mohamed MALLECK, Swift Current, Canada:

You say that "Turkey is biting the hand that feeds her in suggesting -- SUGGESTING -- that Iareal and the US are behind the PKK problems". Let us be clear : (1) Israel IS training PKK rebels to attack Iran andthe skills ARE transferable to helping the Kurdish insurgency in Turkey. Here is evidence for that.

http://news.bbc.co.uk/2/hi/middle_east/5364982.stm

(2) About a certain amount of intolerance that had existed BEFORE Erdogan came to power (i.e. under the ultranationalists as distinct from the so-called 'Islamists'), the Erdogan government has come a long way to liberalisation, granting many liberties to the Kurds, relaxing former restrictions on freedom of speech, etc. An example : Italy under Romano Prodi is not the same as Italy under Berlusconi, India under Manmohan Singh is not the same as India under Vajpayi and the BJP!

I repeat, my dear compatriot, let us be very lucid!

Regards.

OH no! No, to you:

Hey Oh NO
I tell you a little bit history for the heaven you heard about the place 'Bosphorus'.

Did you know why there was police pressure over the citizens in Turkey. yes there was so high police and state control in Turkey. Because there was a cold war between US and Russia. And Turkey was on US side.
While you were going to parties and swimming pools wherever you got spoilt like this, the Turkish kids were working in the military bases and controlling the state under the real COLD war tension. Apperently you are not aware of these.
So the time you enjoyed, the Turks were under duty for your happiness of prince.
For torture, if you are really interested, you can some redings for American heaven in Cuba.
Don't make big judgements to show your existence.

spidon:

@ Mohamed MALLECK, November 6, 2007 8:38 PM

My compatriot, I agree with your findings above but what does all of this have to do with the billions of dollars given to Turkey by the US to promote peaceful relations and secure access to Iraq, which I might add, Turkey refused to give in a 2003 vote.

Furthermore, funding Turkey for being a good ally and NATO member has done nothing to improve Turkey's human rights record. I also do not mean to be repeating myself but Turkey is biting the hand that feeds her in suggesting that the US and Israel are behind the ongoing PKK problems. One look at the humanitarian lapses toward the Kurds and you would be clear on the matter of why a terror organization such as the PKK is thriving in Turkey.

I do not want you to take my word for it; the proof is all in The Human Rights Watch reports:

hrw.org/doc?t=europe&c=turkey

My compatriot, please copy/paste the above into your browser and read for yourself. I am sure you will see why Turkey is having problems today as the Ottoman Empire had problems in the past.

Is there a solution? I think so, but insulting the only two friendly countries Turkey has been able to maintain (even if it is for strictly practical reasons) will not solve the Turkish problems. I may not be Muslim but some of us Christians know a thing or two about practicality and especially tolerant coexistence; not without cost I might add. I think it is time to put some things into perspective on the matter.

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

Mohamed MALLECK, Swift Current, Canada:

Spiridon,

Stop ridiculing yourself, my compatriot.

You will remember that, about 2 years ago the Canadian dollar was worth only US$ 0.65. Today, it is worth US$1.05

Now, how much purchasing power have we lost in terms of our forex reserves held in US dollars. Check from Bank of Canada statistics what amount of our external reserves is held in USD and you can ca;culate the amount. That's for us, my compatriot, and my hoisehold pays taxes to the tune of twice six figure values.

Now, China has forex reserves held in USD to the tune of over USD 1.3 trillion, India, the home country of my father, has about USD 850 billion, Saudi Arabia has about USD 700 billion and the Emirates and other Arab countries have another USD 800 billion. Add Russia, Taiwan, Japan, and you will find out that it is other countries, mainly emerging market countries, that are today feeding Americans, not the other way round.

To come to the case of Turkey. It is true that Turkey is indebted to the IMF rather than being a net creidtor. But, guess what. Turkey is among the countries that, by servicing its debt to the IMF (which it is doing very regularly, good- Muslim fashion), holds the best prospect of keeping that institution in business considering that Venezuela, and soon India and others, will repay all their loans to the IMF and would not want to hear of the neo-imperialist institution any more. Ask the new Managing Director, Dominique Strass-Kahn.

You and I are good Canadians -- let us check our facts before we say things that may not cast us in our best light.

DONT_LIKE_AMERICANS:

If I were a statesman, I would not want to tocuh america with a hundred mile long pole.

Any country who has ever dealt with america had its misfortune. I do not want to sound like a zealot, but america is probably the biggest terrorist state ever. Nazis had their central, racist and well advertised agenda. If you look at america, its agenda are franchised. You can be anyone and do its dirty work for money. Haliburton is old story, look at Blackwater. "Rendition" is another example. And when your need is over, you will meet your violent end. Just like Saddam. I wonder what awaits that idiot in Pakistan.

If I were a statesman, I would rather have my country poor and my people starved than making a deal with america.

Cantankerous:

All:

What do Turks, or others from the Middle East, mean when they call their societies "modern"? The term appears to have a sociological importance that goes beyond the common meaning of the word.

To me, "modern" usually means "new" and sometimes means "something I can live happily without."

Amar? Victoria?

spidon:

Oh, yes, the link for the above quoted Turkish violations:

hrw.org/doc?t=europe&c=turkey

Please copy/paste the above link into browser and read with caution. A lot of the details are gruesome.

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

spidon:

Please forgive me for copy/pasting a post from above but I believe that it is extremely important to say it like it is.

*****

Steve Goldstein:
We have been sending billions of dollars aid to Turkey and forgiving their debt for decades now. All we have in return is a fake “ally”. Turks have their own agenda with or without USA. If you ask me they need us more then we need them. Turkey has so many skeletons in their closet is unbelievable. The mistreatment of Kurds, the Christian minority, including Armenians, Greeks, etc. I can’t believe we are even engaging or relating with them or helping them to join EU. A human rights violator and Genocide committer and denier has no place like that in EU.

November 6, 2007 2:19 PM

*****

The matter of the human rights violations committed by Turkey has not been discussed by the US administration, despite the insistence of the EU to address the matter with Turkey. Billions of US dollars have been funnelled through to the military and government in that Turkey by the generosity of the American citizens, but what does the average American citizen know about Turkey.

Here are a few facts as quoted from THE HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH:

Turkey: To Combat Torture, Monitoring Police Stations Is Key
March 6, 2006

Turkey: Human Rights Watch Researcher Detained in Southeast
April 12, 2006

Turkey: Military Meddling Mars Run-Up to Elections
As EU Equivocates, Government Stalls on Human Rights Reforms
July 18, 2007

Turkey: Outspoken Turkish-Armenian Journalist Murdered
Prosecutions for Speech Created Hostile Environment for Media
January 20, 2007

Unjust, Restrictive, and Inconsistent
The Impact of Turkey’s Compensation Law with Respect to Internally Displaced People
December 20, 2006

Turkey: No Excuse for Attack on Judges
Court Decision to Ban Headscarf Cannot Justify Murder
May 17, 2006

*****

The above headlines of human rights violations in Turkey are only from the first of eight pages (limited due to lack of space on the database of THE HUMAN RIGHTS WATCH), listing thousands of violations one can freely access and read.

Like Mr. Goldstein, I too want to know why the US government is continuing to fund a country that has one of the most brutal and violent treatment of its ethnic and special rights groups, while blaming the US for being at fault with regard to internal problems experienced in Turkey, due entirely to the abominable treatment of its own citizens.

Spiridon
Montreal Canada

Paul NY:

Chasing popularity in Turkey or anywhere else in the world is a chump's game. We have no control over what they think of us. Protect US interests.

Paul NY:

Chasing popularity in Turkey or anywhere else in the world is a chump's game. We have no control over what they think of us. Protect US interests.

Metyu:

I spent several months travelling through Turkey. And more than any other country I have been to, Turkey reminds me of the U.S. Not the U.S. of today but the U.S. of the pre-World War I era. An up-and-comer.

Turkey today seems to have a balance between go-getter business acumen and dedication to family. There's less emphasis on education and more on personal initiative than, say, East Asia. This may be a good thing or it may not, but again it reminds me of the U.S. where education has never been, shall we say, over-emphasized.

To all Turks who read this comment, I think your country has vast potential. Unfortunately you don't get the positive world press you deserve. But Turks are proud and patriotic and I'm sure that you'll keep developing regardless of how you are viewed. My hope is that this issue with the PKK doesn't spiral out of control.

Mohamed MALLECK, Swift Current, Canada:

YOU DON'T HAVE A CLUE,

I wish to offer a very brief response to you.

No, I'll surprise you if I tell you that I don't think that Shari'a law should be the nationally-enforced law in ANY country, becuase, with globalisation, ALL countries have no alternative to being multicultural and the nationaly-enforced law should reflect a consensus (Ijtihaad) among all groups forming the population. Yes, even then Shari'a should be the guiding principle at personal law level for the Muslims even where they live in multi-cultural societies. Where there is a clash betwee the two, the national law should prevail. Hier stehe ich; Ich kann nicht anders.

Also, with regard to my use of the term 'Christian practice' to express my resentment of the WESTERN (as distinct from what I wrongly termed Christian (because the West is often equated with Christianity) value sustem that might is right, I need to apologise to those Christian fellow-believers of mine who have the same universal values an I do, namely the value-system associated with the UNTO OTHERS concept.

On the other hand, though, to reinforce my resentment of certain practices, I would refer you to an article published by Fred Kaplan in Slate Magazine to day on how Bush and Condi made a mess of Pakistan. My father was born in the Indian subcontinent. My relatives still contribute to Indian society’s prosperity (wealth creation as well as taxes paid as well as social work, knowledge creation etc.) in a way far out of proportion with their numbers as a proportion of the Indian population. I identify with India but also have immense sympathy for the brotherly people of Pakistan, as do most Indians, including luminaries like the late Rabindranath Tagore, Sri Raman, Kuldip Nayar, the late Mehboob Khan, Azim Premji, and countless others. Pakistan, its people, its President, its Prime Minister and its army have done much to combat extremism, causing much suffering sometimes to innocents, including soldiers who get killed in operations, including the four or more attempts on the life of Musharraf and one on that Benazir Bhutto. There is a ceiling on the price Muslims are willing to pay. Indescribable atrocities happen in the Gaza strip and my heart is rent asunder reading a headline on BCC World website asking whther Hamas has capitulated. My memory is thrown back to Charles Pasqua’s admonition, on the morrow of 9/11 that he hopes that Muslims will condemn the extremists. They have not only condemned extremists, they have sometimes butchered them in a way that I have sometimes felt revolted at our own leaders’ shameful surrender to Western dictats. Meanwhile of course, we learnt that, all along, le sieur Charles Pasqua had been, with unqualifiable ignominy, striking deals with Saddam’s administration in the context of the UN sanctions and oil-for-food scandal.

NO, NO, NO, YOU DON'T HAVE A CLUE. Indeed, it is YOU who don’t have a clue. I hope for you that you have started getting the message. Ask the apartheid bosses: the end is nigh when the brightest within your own ranks, like Fred Kaplan among American intellectuals, but also like Senator Ray MacGovern, like Chris Hedges, like Howard Zinn, like Scott Ritter, turn against you. As Desmond Tutu said, the strategy of non-violence is, to force the oppressors, through civil disobedience, to commit atrocities so horrible that even their closest supporters who have brains turn against them. That is how non-violence vanquishes the most barbaric brutality. THAT, YOU DON'T HAVE A CLUE, is the Islamic way. And soon it will delivered to you gift-wrapped, courtesy of the friends of humanity.

Sophia:

TO: STEVE GOLDSTEIN
I spent my last summer in the USA. I had prety nice time there and I liked American people a lot. However, there was one thing which made me unhappy...THE NEWS about Middle East....Most of them are not correct and all of them were inaccurate...I just suggest you not to judge us or any other country just with ur knowledge that u get from your media...Everyday in Iraq many Iraqi people are killed by American soldiers. However, i couldnt have any chance to learn any news about those iraqi people from the American media. but i saw many news about the american soldiers in iraq who are in trouble!!!you guys dont have any idea what we have here...
I am ,as a Turkish and Muslim girl, very happy to live in Turkey. There is not any forcement for Islam to anybody. Everybody believes whatever he wants!! And all the laws are equal for Muslims,Non-Muslims, Turks, Kurds and for the other nations.We are so glad to live together under the name of Turkey as all the Turkish citizens(kurds, turks,armenians,muslims,nonmuslims...ect).
STEVE GOLDSTEIN pls stop to judge people with ur poor knowledge!!What do u know about us??NOTHING!!!!!We are very modern country which also has very rich culture. If u interest in, I will be glad to invite you to Turkey. And then u may see and understand how modern, democratic and happy country Turkey is. And by this way you may get a chance to learn how Turkish people are hospitable...
Our biggest problem is with the terrorist group which called PKK. We dont have any problem with our Kurdish borthers and sisters. And I am , as a Turkish girl who has many Kurdish friends, prety sure that not all the Kurdish people support that terrorist group. It is just like Al-Qauida-the terrorist group which tries to get benefit of the name of Islam-. Even though I am a Muslim, I never every support that terrorists. And It is totally same for Kurds...Even though there are many Kurdish people, not all of them supports that terrorists who tries to take advantage of being Kurdish....

Mike:

I pray that we withdraw from the world as much as possible. I am so sick of being blamed for the world's problems. Let's leave it to the good guys in Russia and China and the world will be relieved of having to deal with us evil Americans.

Hello:

Helping Allies on one hand and also not bashing cmpletely allies enemies is diplomatic " carrot and stick" policy by super powers.

In other word listen to me and all s well if not Iwill support your foes. In Turkey Kurds are foes to the Turkish solidarity however Kurds are allies of USA in Iraq, so America is playing a balancing act among two nations.

America will do what suits its interests, Turkey should do what suits its integerity.

almaden:

Greater Armenia once stretched almost to the Black Sea. Until the Turks got to them. Why modern Turks seem prone to identifying themselves with the genocidal Young Turks under the Ottomans no one can tell, but their fierce lobbying to quell the truth in Congress tells the story. The Kurds better look out. You see what happened to the Armenians. The Kurds are the largest nation without their own state. Now the Bush regime is getting into a partnership to keep them down and isolated in a corner of Iraq. Indeed, as Bush says, "Freedom is on the march".

maxiths:

Again, after reading the post's of all in the discussion, i find a few very entertaining thoughts.
Parlaskari. wrote to steve Goldstein about having evidence to proove your point in the Armenian Genocide and Kurdish i may add also. you must be very young mr Parlaskari or very naive talking about evidence. Even here in America evidence is a joke especially when it involves the Police vs Citizens. Evidence gets lost, changed and threatene. That's why we have human rights reports and investigations, thank God!
The Mexicans you so call Alliens pass the borders every day and kill some of them, they still are treated fair and deasent.kWhat happens to a Kurd that has not done anything and gets arested. or this doesn't happen? Torture is the Answer, say it man!!!!
Our billions of dollars are going to waist and your human rights is non existant there.
It's humiliating to think that us Americans are stupit and your nation is justified for all the wrongs they have done to humanity.
The cries of the dead are rising and now is the time for all good Turks to THINK!
Erdogan is a thinker but his not enough,
Ask what happened to the billions oil dollars turkey got from sadam where did they go.
The billions of dollars from the good ols USA where did they go.
Answer to fight the people and to HIDE THE EVIDENCE.

VICTORIA:

you dont have a clue-
you have to be fair about it-
if you as a secualrist have such an overwhelmng fear that islam is going to takeover your government, you of all should understand that to have ones ideas and beliefs coerced into silence or be to jailed for it- is supremely unjust.

islamoparanoia of the secularists put erdogan in jail, for reading a poem making reference to islam!

is that the freedom you propose?

freedom for only those who agree with you?

zeynep- no, actually the US has stated categorically that the PKK is a terrorist organization.

you dont have clue- if you're a muslim you know the qu'ran states there is no compulsion in islam

how can you say there should be compulsion in politics?

o- btw- dennis kucinich, a congressman (and presidential candidate) introduced a resolution to congress today to have dick cheney impeached-

http://kucinich.house.gov/Issues/Issue/?IssueID=3750

just like not all turks back their own government, not all americans back bush

Bangalee Babu:

Anon Re: Please stop it.

Each man or women to herself.

BTW It is a free country and free speech is enshrined in our laws.

As for reading about Turkish views I can easily go visit the web pages of Turkish papers.

I don't need Mr. Bakshi for that!

Jeremy:

A very beautifully written piece. Thank you for the care you put into your work. It's refreshing glimpse at the world.

Zeynep Ucok:

So the essay says AKP gave the faith freedom to Turkey ha?

So we can ask to Tayyip Erdogan:
Why his son didn't make his army obligation? Because of health? His children studied and provided their future. But we everyday see the poor people's sons lying under the Turkish flag for the endless trip. Our innocent children die at borders for NOTHING!
US doesn't even call PKK as terrorists. The ones attach America are terrorist but the ones attack us aren't. Wake up and realize that Americans are not the only living creatures in the world. Your media is censored. You hear what the big guys want you to hear. Now the government forces the Turkish media to do so. I consider the best friendship is the Erdogan-Bush friendship. I admire them, they are so look alike.

Turkey is not a religion centered country. And never will. The way we choose is the Ataturk's way.
This government's age will end ultimately and Turkey will stand much still in front of US. For my opinion US nevet puts its hand under a rock if finally it isn't getting something for its own good.

One last thing. We all live happily together in Turkey with kurds. Every single person lives in Turkey has kurdish friends. We get married, celebrate everything, we cry together. No one can ruin this friendship that goes hundreds for years back. Every one lives in Turkey are Turkish. This is a generating word.

You dont have clue!!:

TO: OH No....
Erdogan was inciteful in that speech which showed his true colors, the poem read: The Minarets are our spears, the domes of the mosques our helmets? What do you think this means you fool,,,its paramount to a declaration or war against secularism a threat to total freedom. In the neighborhood Turkey lives in some of what you call freedom of speech can spark a revolution like IRAN? Sorry we the children of ATATURK, the Turkish Armed Forces the gaurdian of secularism and plurality of freedom will not allow this. You have a long way to go understand Turkey and what it takes to protect a democracy in this neighborhood of Syria, Iraq, Iran and Russia. Im a practicing Muslim but do not for a second believe in the Sharia like mentally of radical Islam. It is a faith perscribed by a far greater power for the person...listen to this Mallack guys comments above how he would like Turkey to be a Saudi Arabia or Iran, a Sharia government, I bet he wants Turkey to return as the Muslim Caliphate too...No we're done with that, you want to be a good Muslim read The Book and do it but you can force it on society! This kind of thinking is precisely what is going to make the Muslim world obsolete in about 20yrs! Ergdogan has realized the layers of the political paradigm as he needs the modern business community's secularists to survive which brings him closer to the center. Otherwise he comes for the Erbakan era of core Islamists, the political far right, if he had his way he could take Turkey down the wrong path of isolationist Islam...Erdogan has the potential to be a great leader for Turkey but I dont trust him. With the military in place and secular institutions actively involved he cannot dislodge from the Kemalist progression toward modernization, secularism and democracy. He will to the contrary be neutralized and drawn to the center with his need for support. NE MUTLU TURKUM DIYENE! Her Sey Vatan Icin!

Anonymous:

Babu, none of your comments have made sense so far. Bakshi is reporting on foreign views of the US. If you want to read about American views of America, go to just about one of five dozen publications around the country. Please stop it.

Bangalee Babu:

Mr. Bakshi still does not get it.

There is little or no support for the current administration in America's towns and cities.

How about bringing us the opinions of America's men and women?

Yet he travelled to Turkey to bring us the feelings of old men who cough.

I guess his next report will be on lung cancer amongst Turkish men who "cough"!

Vic van Meter:

And herein lies the strange mystery of the Turkish/American relationship. Neither trusts the other, and yet we're definitely going to help each other.

There are gripes between both sides on failures of the other government. But if I can be forgiven for using a little American folk saying, sh*t happens. The Turkish vote to allow Americans to invade Iraq through the north didn't go through. America has not been quite concerned enough about the PKK. Pelosi brought that ill-timed Armenian genocide vote to the floor.

The Turks probably ought not to trust our government, considering what we've seen the government allowing Musharraf to do just across Iran from them. Obviously, Bush isn't around to liberate people or seriously challenge dictators. His priority is fighting radical Islam, wherever it is and whatever the cost. Which is utter stupidity.

The Turks can thank their lucky stars that they're a part of NATO and that America probably has more to lose from angering Turkey than angering local Kurds. The PKK is a designated terrorist organization attacking one of our longtime allies. Americans saying Turkey is not acting as an ally hasn't researched our other "allies" lately. They've been quite accomodating considering who their immediate neighbors are. Turks doubting Bush's aid to Turkey are forgetting that Turkey could be a dictatorship and still receive aid to fight the Kurds threatening to divide Iraq and Turkey and further erode American support.

Turkey and America have had some rocky parts to their relationship, but I think I'd like to take the opportunity to point out the similarities between the two countries. Their current government is structured much like ours as far as faith is concerned. America is not technically a Christian country, nominally we are secular. But the Christian lobby is extremely influential in our country. No less influential than Islam in Turkey. America has survived for a few hundred years resisting the urge to theocracy (barely). Don't start assuming Turks are somehow different than us. Being a secular nation is diplomatically a plus, and from what Amar has gained from the interview above, it looks like the AKP has gained support for not solely religious reasons.

America and Turkey are both often criticized for their relationship. A hefty chunk of our allies are not nearly as cuddly with Turkey as America has been. A good number of our allies joined together to block Turkey from the EU. And most of Turkey's neighbors are not exactly fans of America, or at least our government. It's been strange to look back and realize that both our nations have stuck it out even though our other allies are much less pleased with us.

Most Americans that you talk to off the bat don't trust Turkey, mostly because they simply lump it together with Middle East countries out of ignorance or for what disagreements have been made newsworthy. In the end, the Americans are in the same boat as those men Amar talked to. Not many trust Turkey to give us everything we want, but we'll take a moderate government and an airbase to supply Iraq with appreciation.

And if Bush doesn't help the Turks against the PKK with any aid at his disposal without even bothering to threaten Pakistan with aid cuts, then that one's not going to be on the American people. Trust me, that would make absolutely zero sense to me as well. You won't be the only ones confused if he takes this highly hippocritical, diplomatically suicidal, and hugely unpopular course of action.

Then again, this is Bush we're talking about, here. I'd be confused and angry with the idiot, but unfortunately not particularly suprised.

talay alkansu:

Believe me,Turkey deserves much better government and a prime minister.Having such a PM also gives everybody,especially to US and EU countries,an artificial power to impose on us their policies.I can also admit that,if Kurdish terrorists are doing such terrorist attacts in my country so easily,it is just because this government.

parlaksari:

Mr. Goldstein, before insulting anyone please make sure that you have enough evidence. You are watching all these events from outside. If any of your family member was killed in your country by an alien who passed your borders illegaly and claims that, that land is belong to them. What would be your attitude, are you going to claim the samethings for yourself too? It is so obvious that both of the countries need help from the other countries. If they don't trust each other then they would decide to have nuclear waepons to protect their borders.

So US needs Turkiye and Turkiye needs US, otherwise. If they all hate each other, (I mean all the countries) then it is inevitable to have wars. These attitudes would prevent peace for the world. US already lost its credibility not only in Turkey, even its citizens can't understand why all these things are happening. Is this for democracy really? The problem is this if one country try to be the super power and dictates everything, then it would never create a democracy but a whole lie.

Please stop to guess things, if you have enough evidence please use them, if not please stop brain washing.

Does anyone knows that Turk are burned in mosques and put into mass graves by Armenians at that time? Turks should learn how to protect their rights since its surrounded by baleful people.

One more thing there are many Kurdish origined Turkish people in Turkey. And I am honoured to live in a harmony with them. No one would success to damage it. No One!!!!!!


parlaksari:

Mr. Goldstein, before insulting anyone please make sure that you have enough evidence. You are watching all these events from outside. If any of your family member was killed in your country by an alien who passed your borders illegaly and claims that, that land is belong to them. What would be your attitude, are you going to claim the samethings for yourself too? It is so obvious that both of the countries need help from the other countries. If they don't trust each other then they would decide to have nuclear waepons to protect their borders.

So US needs Turkiye and Turkiye needs US, otherwise. If they all hate each other, (I mean all the countries) then it is inevitable to have wars. These attitudes would prevent peace for the world. US already lost its credibility not only in Turkey, even its citizens can't understand why all these things are happening. Is this for democracy really? The problem is this if one country try to be the super power and dictates everything, then it would never create a democracy but a whole lie.

Please stop to guess things, if you have enough evidence please use them, if not please stop brain washing.

Does anyone knows that Turk are burned in mosques and put into mass graves by Armenians at that time? Turks should learn how to protect their rights since its surrounded by baleful people.

One more thing there are many Kurdish origined Turkish people in Turkey. And I am honoured to live in a harmony with them. No one would success to damage it. No One!!!!!!


Anonymous:

Your imagery is really quite powerful. I could imagine the setting again. It is such a warm and correct description of the atmosphere.

Bugaloo:

the interpretation and spectre was very bad..Thats not turkey.. Getto and slums.. I think U.S. have got a lot of like that places.. Malicious... I saw Turkey..Turkey is very modern a country..

Steve Goldstien:

We have been sending billions of dollars aid to Turkey and forgiving their debt for decades now. All we have in return is a fake “ally”. Turks have their own agenda with or without USA. If you ask me they need us more then we need them. Turkey has so many skeletons in their closet is unbelievable. The mistreatment of Kurds, the Christian minority, including Armenians, Greeks, etc. I can’t believe we are even engaging or relating with them or helping them to join EU. A human rights violator and Genocide committer and denier has no place like that in EU.

Mohamed MALLECK, Swift Current, Canada:

The truth, I hate to have to say, is clear.

Erdogan is the quintessential Muslim -- honest, hardworking, believing only in The Almighty and no other power, tolerant to a fault, cooperative, but straightforward also not just to a fault but dealy straightforward -- DEADLY.

The message is clear. I shall do UNTO OTHERS what I want others do unto me. I shall respect them; honour their dignity; smile at, and be blind to, their small weaknesses' Ishall try to help them correct their more serious weaknesses and mistakes.

But, if they mess up with me, in particular with my dignity, I have the Islamic law on my side.

Khalil Gibran would say: "And who shall summarise for you what Islamic law is?" Of course it is in the Quran and the Ahaadith; of course you can fully understand Islamic law only by having faith.

At the same time, yes, Islamic Law can be summarised. One eye for one eye is my right, not necessarily the law that I should guide my behaviour by. Islamic law is not that, because I am strong, I have the right to take ten eyes for one eye, or a thousand eyes, or an eye, an arm and a leg for one eye. Islamic law is not that, because I am weak, I have to allow myself to be forced into accepting less than an eye for an eye.

But, yes, Islamic law tells me that, to fully deserve the favour of The Almfghty, I should be able to forgive. FORGIVE, except if, by forgiving greater, harm will come to me or to innocent people than if I enforce my right of an eye for an eye.

This Islamic theory and practice is at the exact opposite end of the moral spectrum from atheist or even the most common Christian practice that humanity has been exposed to since Constantine adopted Christianity.

By contrast, the Christian THEORY is fully in line with the Islamic ideal of forgiveness. Christian theory, as distinct from Christian practice, is even better than Islamic PRACTICE.

The Christian theory is to turn the other cheek. But that is an impracticable way of life. In reaction to this impracticality, Christian practice has, like a pendulum, swung to the other extreme.

And who shall summarise for you what the other extreme is?

The other extreme is: might is right. If you are strong, one thousand eyes for an eye; if you are weak, lick the boots of your oppressor.

The Christian theory is : The meek shall inherit the earth. But if they cannot inherit the earth, then let them be mighty. Because might is right. And then one thousand eyes for an eye.

It is for having seen, over and over again, these dynamics at play that Hizir Balci can rightly conclude : “We are allies of America; but America cannot be trusted.”

Oh, no...:

I didn't know "modern, westernised" Turkey had neighbourhoods like Kasimpasa......and I know exactly where it is.

I guess your fear from the Turkish police and intelligence stopped you writing about the fact that Erdogan was jailed because he read a classic poem in a speech, eh? Ah....that wonderful, democratic heaven upon Bosphorous....


Alex / H34DUP:

"If the American people had their choice, we would be helping the situation in Darfur and our true allies."

To clarify that statement, the American people would be doing things like helping in Darfur, Southern Mexico's new Katrina and other countries in desperate need of foreign aid and intervention. Seperately, the American people would likely have our country engaging in activities that would strengthen our relations with close allies in Europe, Asia, Africa and the Americas, rather than trying desperately to dictate what goes on as if our word was the authority. Finally, I think that if the American people had their way, they would want to re-invest in our country's health and intelligence, improving both environmental conditions (industrial regulations) and education standards. Realistically, however, our ignorance would likely taint all of these efforts regardless.

At any rate, this is a slight digression from the topic at hand-- the view these people have of our country.

Alex / H34DUP:

“I don’t expect anything from America.”

Nor should he...but he has his labels wrong, he won't get anything from the American government, America's people have long been left behind and the majority of our voices have been silenced. Instead, we quietly accept the agenda of whoever is pulling the strings, which is why even though the common American does not want to see us go to war with Iran, we are being told by our Government and the media "War with Iran is inevitable."

If the American people had their choice, we would be helping the situation in Darfur and our true allies. Instead, we allow our government to make false promises while digging us deeper into debt.

“America says the right things, but will it act?” asks one of the men. Hizir coughs, and replies, “We’ll wage war anyway, with or without America’s permission.”

Yes, America says the right things. Do we act, or even more importantly, if we do act, do we do the right thing?

And yes, it is clear that Turkey will go to war regardless of our input, that much is clear, and given the perfect timing of the Armenian genocide declaration in congress coinciding with this issue with the PKK, I can't say I'm surprised, but I can say I am disappointed.

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