Court Refuses to Free Scribes: And more from the Turkish Press

November 26, 2011

( An Istanbul court refused to release arrested journalists Ahmet Şık and Nedim Şener, as well as 12 other suspects, in the first hearing of an alleged coup plot case Monday.

Fourteen suspects, including journalists Şık, Şener and Soner Yalçın, the owner of the dissident online news portal Oda TV, are accused of ties to Ergenekon, an alleged ultranationalist gang accused of plotting to overthrow the government. The 14 appeared before Istanbul’s 16th High Criminal Court on their 265th day of arrest, prompting anger from colleagues and representatives from local and international journalistic organizations at the slow pace of the legal process.

Philippe Leruth from the European Federation of Journalists, or EFJ, highlighted the importance of support during a protest in front of the courthouse.

“Everybody has to understand that if there are concerns about press freedom, it means democracy is in danger,” he said. “I hope this will make [the government] think more about this case, especially during a time when many ‘Arab Spring’ countries are taking Turkey as a model for democracy.”

Ümit Gürtuna, the spokesman of the Platform of Freedom for Journalists, said there were nearly 10,000 cases in Turkey involving journalists and that the number of arrested journalists had now reached 76. Gürtuna also said Turkey was at the top of the list in terms of the number of journalists that have been arrested.

“This is a shame for a country that is trying to improve its democracy,” he said.

Suspect Kaşif Kozinoğlu, a former intelligence operative, was scheduled to appear in court Monday as well, but he died of a heart attack Nov. 12 in prison.

The court decided to postpone the trial until Dec. 26.

During the trial, the defense lawyers also demanded that the judges be recused from the case; a higher court is expected to rule on the demand some time next week.

A row broke out between members of the press and security guards in front of the hearing room at Istanbul’s Çağlayan Courthouse just prior to the beginning of the trial.

Due to the intense attention the case has attracted, the trial was held in the larger hall of the First Court of Serious Crimes. A quota of three persons was allocated to the families and acquaintances of the suspects, 20 for the Turkish press and 10 for the international press. Despite the quotas, however, many local journalists were turned away from the trial room as members of the international press were given priority for entry into the courtroom.

There was a separate row between the security guards themselves as the guards standing in front of the hearing room argued with security personnel in charge of registering the names of journalists during the morning.

The Ergenekon investigations have divided the Turkish population. To some they represent the “cleansing of the century”.[21] To its detractors the Ergenekon investigation is politically motivated; the alleged organization itself a deliberate fabrication by government sympathizers.[21] Criticism grew stronger after the arrest of journalists in February and March 2011.[75] Even the biggest fans of the government worry that the legitimacy of the Ergenekon case is being dented by heavy-handed tactics such as the arrests of Ahmet Şık and Nedim Şener.[76] The real goal of the Ergenekon investigation was not to go after the deep state but to intimidate and silence opponents of Turkey’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP), particularly critics of the vast network of Gülen’s supporters known as the Gülen Movement.[10]
Ergenekon (organization) – Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia)


Qatar’s Sunni Side

October 27, 2011

(Crethi Plethi)How could Qatar’s foreign policy best be defined during the Arab Spring? In the midst of the conflict between Gaddafi’s forces and the rebels in the Libyan civil war, Qatar was hailed by Barack Obama in April for building a broad coalition of international support for the NATO campaign against Gaddafi. Obama also hailed the emir of Qatar for supposedly being a pragmatic mediator and negotiator in the wider region.Indeed, as the Guardian puts it, the country has a reputation for “a cautious but active foreign policy.” Other analysts have seen Qatar as a nation playing both sides in the Middle Eastern Cold War between the Saudi-led “status-quo bloc” and the Iranian-led “resistance” bloc.
For example, although Qatar has maintained good economic and diplomatic ties with Tehran, it has also hosted American military bases and CENTCOM, besides having limited trade relations with Israel.
However, I prefer to advance the following thesis: Qatar’s foreign policy at present is based on the principle of promoting Sunni interests, and where possible, the interests of Sunni Islamists.
For instance, recently the country has come under criticism from some Western diplomats and the National Transitional Council (NTC) for its role in Libya. As the Wall Street Journal notes, Qatari aid has circumvented the NTC, and has been provided to independent rebel militias dominated by Islamist commanders.
Two individuals particularly favored by Qatar are the Islamist leader of the Tripoli Military Council — Abdul-Aziz Belhaj, who is generally not trusted by rebels in and around Misrata, and Sheikh Ali Sallabi, a Libyan cleric currently living in Qatar’s capital and with close ties to Belhaj. Tensions have emerged between Sallabi and Mahmoud Jabril, the interim prime minister for the NTC described as a “tyrant in waiting” and part of a group of “extreme secularists” by Sallabi.
Meanwhile, when it came to the Syrian uprising, in which the Sunni Islamist Muslim Brotherhood could well be playing a prominent role in the opposition to the Alawite-dominated government, Qatar quickly transformed from an ally into a harsh critic of Assad’s regime. Al-Jazeera’s Arabic channel rapidly expanded its coverage of protests in Syria, and Yousef al-Qaradhawi, host of al-Jazeera’s “Shari’a and Life” show, called for the Baathist regime to be removed from power.
The cleric criticized Assad as someone “held prisoner by his entourage and the [Alawite] sect.” Al-Jazeera, it should be noted, is owned by a member of the Qatari ruling dynasty, and its Arabic channel is certainly aligned with Qatar’s foreign policy agenda, intended for Middle Eastern audiences and very different from the English version that is aimed at international viewers outside the region.
The latter’s remarks particularly annoyed the Syrian government, leading to a suspension of ties between Syria and Qatar as Assad reportedly told the Qatari emir’s emissary that al-Qaradhawi must apologize for his statements if there are going to be friendly relations again.
And so it is that al-Jazeera’s Arabic channel has been more than happy to provide coverage of demonstrations in Egypt, Tunisia, and Yemen, all of which are places where Sunni Islamists can be empowered (the Muslim Brotherhood, the Ennahda party, and the Islah party respectively). Yet al-Jazeera’s Arabic channel generally ignores the unrest in Bahrain and eastern Saudi Arabia, both with Shi’a majorities protesting against Sunni rule.
Bahrain is a country marked by Sunni minority rule at the cost of significant sectarian discrimination against the Shi’a majority. In fact, Qatar has even aided Saudi Arabia and the Gulf Cooperation Council in sending troops to assist the regime in quelling the protests.
As for eastern Saudi Arabia, a perusal of al-Jazeera’s Arabic news site reveals no coverage of protests there. As Asad Abu Khalil of “The Angry Arab News Service” correctly notes (for once), “to verify what is going on in Saudi Arabia, al-Jazeera asked its famous witness, Abu Muhammad in Idlib, if he saw protests from his window. Abu Muhammad said that he couldn’t see anything and al-Jazeera accordingly reported that all is well in the kingdom.”
Finally, in keeping with Qatar’s warm ties with Turkey under the Islamist AKP, al-Jazeera’s Arabic channel has tended to provide uncritical coverage of the prime minister Erdoğan’s efforts to bolster his image as a friend and helping hand for the Arab world, while not mentioning the water crises Turkey’s dam projects in Anatolia have helped to trigger in Iraq and Syria. To be sure, the policy predates the AKP government’s accession to power in 2002, but has only expanded and accelerated under Erdoğan.
Unfortunately, there has been a far too widespread tendency, both in the media and in policy circles, to see Qatar either as a moderate Western ally in the ongoing unrest as part of the Arab Spring, or somehow as an advocate for liberal democracy and reform in the Middle East and North Africa. Rather, its true Sunni sectarian and pro-Islamist agenda needs to be recognized.
Aymenn Jawad Al-Tamimi is a student at Brasenose College, Oxford University, and an intern at the Middle East Forum.

Turkey’s state TV: Ruling party wins election – Israel News, Ynetnews

June 12, 2011

Absolute power can be voted in. Don’t be shocked. people voted for Hamas and Hitler too. A Republic, if you can keep it said Benjamin Franklin

Islamist and Turkish
Prime Minister
Recep Tayyip Erdogan…

Turkey’s state-run television says the ruling party of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan has won a third term in parliamentary elections.

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First the Leaks, Then the Dark Theories : Wikileaks an anti-Turkish plot engineered by Israel

December 3, 2010
ZBIGNIEW BRZEZINSKI isn’t the only person who is spinning the facts. We also have a few wackadoos on friendfeed

In Turkey and beyond, the release of U.S. diplomatic cables on website WikiLeaks has sparked a round of conspiracy theories.

Turkish leaders appear convinced that state actors, in particular the U.S. itself or Israel—rather than Julian Assange of WikiLeaks—are behind the release of U.S. State Department cables, whose contents have embarrassed leaders around the globe.

The skepticism about WikiLeaks’ independence is widespread and appears to be rooted in sheer disbelief that the world’s most powerful nation can’t stop its secrets from spilling onto the Internet. That sentiment pairs with a willingness to believe the worst of Israel. Neither is limited to Turkey.

“Undoubtedly, the Western governments and the Zionist regime were involved,” said Iran President Mahmoud Ahmadinejad earlier this week.

Meanwhile, on Wednesday, Russia’s Prime Minister Vladimir Putin offered up on CNN’s Larry King Live that “experts” believe WikiLeaks is being deliberately “inflated” by others, to be used for political purposes at a later date.

“Assange clearly has very well-informed high-level protectors who aren’t for the first time ‘leaking’ strictly secret documents to him by the ton. There is no doubt that these protectors have their own, far from altruistic, goals,” wrote the official Rossiskaya Gazeta on Thursday, surmising that U.S. officials were trying to revive a “rusted-through American bureaucratic machine.”

“It could be Barack Obama himself,” the newspaper said.

“No one in the United States government with a brain in their head wanted to see this happen,” said State Department spokesman P.J. Crowley. “This is a crime, not grand strategy. We will work through it, but it has done substantial damage.”

Turkish conspiracy theorists have long speculated that Israel is seeking to get rid of an Islamic-leaning Turkish government that has turned sharply against its former ally. The alleged Israeli goal, these people say, is to replace the Justice and Development party’s rule with a more friendly Turkish regime.

The WikiLeaks documents include reports of widespread corruption among government ministers, including Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan and his family, which opposition leaders have sought to highlight, triggering a furious response from the prime minister.

Turkish President Abdullah Gul started the ball rolling earlier this week, when he said of the cable leakage: “I think it has a system. It seems that it has an aim.”

Huseyin Celik, spokesman for the Justice and Development party, or AKP, said Wednesday that Israel was behind the document release. The evidence, he told reporters, was that “Israel is very pleased” and was so quick to say it had nothing to fear.

“How did they know that?” Mr. Celik asked, adding that “the main goal of these leaks was to weaken the Turkish government.”

The Israeli Embassy in Ankara issued a statement Thursday denying any role in the WikiLeaks release of some 250,000 documents.

Some Turkish newspaper columnists see more complex forces at work. It’s a plot by a global “deep state,” a kind of rogue organization within the North Atlantic Treaty Organization that aims to weaken President Barack Obama, reshape the geopolitical playing field in Europe and the Middle East and whip Turkey into line, according to a Thursday column by Samill Tayyar of the religious conservative Star newspaper.

Comments from newspaper readers suggest the conspiracy theories are widely believed. “This has been prepared by the U.S. and Israel, it is one way to start the World War III from the Middle East by setting the Muslim countries against each other,” said one reader of Hurriyet, the daily paper of Turkey’s secularist establishment.

Not everyone is buying it, though. “Turkish AKP Party Members reveal: ‘Israel is responsible for the extinction of the Dinosaurs,'” commented one reader on Mr. Celik’s claims, on Hurriyet’s English-language newspaper site.

On Thursday, after returning from meeting other leaders and U.S. Secretary of State Hillary Clinton in Kazakhstan, Mr. Gul appeared to have changed his tune.

“I don’t believe much in these conspiracy theories,” he said on Turkey’s NTV television. “All of the documents have not been released yet, as far as I know, so maybe some will come out [about Israel] later.”

The Turks have become as predictable and paranoid as the Arabs (Hat Tip: Martin Kramer and Memeorandum).

Israel could have engineered the release of hundreds of thousands of confidential documents on WikiLeaks as a plot to corner Turkey on both domestic and foreign policy, according to a senior ruling party official.
“One has to look at which countries are pleased with these. Israel is very pleased. Israel has been making statements for days, even before the release of these documents,” Hüseyin Çelik, deputy leader of the Justice and Development Party, or AKP, and the party’s spokesperson, told reporters at a press conference Wednesday.
Following initial reaction to the leaked U.S. Embassy cables, which have revealed diplomatic secrets about Turkey, Azerbaijan, its Middle Eastern neighbors, Turkish officials have started to suspect that “the main cause of these leaks was to weaken the Turkish government.”

The first signal came from President Abdullah Gül, who said Tuesday the leaks seemed to be a result of a systematic work with some purpose behind it.
Though government officials like Deputy Prime Minister Cemil Çiçek avoided naming Israel in their public statements Wednesday, Çelik, a close aide to Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, singled out the country with his comments Wednesday.
“Documents were released and they immediately said, ‘Israel will not suffer from this.’ How did they know that?” Çelik said.

Are they selling the Protocols of the Elders of Zion on the streets of Ankara yet? I’m sure it’s a best seller in the Turkish government.

the conspiracies are becoming more elaborate by the day. by the end of the week they will be slick enough for a printable brochure or PDF and by next month you can expect a coffee table book

Posted via email from noahdavidsimon’s posterous

Leave a Comment » | Abdullah Gül, AKP, Ankara, Cemil Çiçek, Elder Of Zion, Hüseyin Çelik, Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey, WikiLeaks | Permalink
Posted by Noah Simon

Turkish Media State – A MONOPOLY

November 14, 2010

how does a obviously false portrayal of the Mavi Marmara incident get made into a film?

 few Turks will ever know
what really happened that night

 because the government has
a near monopoly over the media
and it produces films like this one
to a public that speaks little else then Turkish

Deep ignorance: Most Turks know nothing about what really happened on the “Mavi Marmara” 

So far, yet close: The exiled Fethullah Gülen 
When Western journalists note in a casual aside that press freedom has experienced certain setbacks under the AKP, they are failing to do justice to the severity of this calamity and its ramifications for Turkey and the region. The calamity is exacerbated by the tendency of the foreign media to repeat, without scrutiny, the very idiocies peddled in the Turkish press, where the range of opinion on offer has become severely limited. The result is the growth of a grossly distorted and dangerous consensus about Turkey, here and abroad — to wit, that Turkey under the AKP has become more democratic and politically healthier, even if it is a bit up the duff with Islamism.
When the AKP took power, four large private groups owned almost all the country’s media-a concentration of power already far too dense for political health. The largest was the Dogan group, which controlled some 70 per cent of the nation’s print and broadcast outlets. The group enjoyed warm relations with the AKP until 2007. Then its outlets began reporting details of the Deniz Feneri scandal, the biggest charity corruption case in German history. Billions of dollars raised by this Islamist charity, Dogan newspapers announced, had found their way into AKP coffers. Soon thereafter, the Turkish Ministry of Finance began investigating the group, then levied upon it the largest tax fine ever assessed on a Turkish company. The company is appealing, but if the appeal fails, it will be annihilated. 
Then there is Sabah, the second-biggest media conglomerate, which controls the largest-circulation daily in Turkey and the powerful ATV television channel. Facing bankruptcy in 2007, it went up for sale. Curiously, all but one bidder dropped out at the last minute. The bidder left standing was the Calik group, whose CEO is Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s son-in-law, Berat Albayrak. A Qatari company, Al-Wasaeel, mysteriously swam up from nowhere to partner Calik’s bid — in defiance of Turkish law, which forbids the foreign financing of the media — and two state banks led by figures close to the AKP, Halk and Vakif, lent Calik $750 million to finance the transaction, even though private banks in Turkey and abroad had declined. 
Associates of the sect leader Fethullah Gülen, who has been exiled in the US since 1998, control many of these media outlets. No one is quite sure what the reclusive Gülen’s agenda really is, but there is no doubt that before the AKP came to power, he was prosecuted here for trying to establish an Islamic state. Nor is there any doubt that he is close to, and supportive of, the AKP. When Gülen is mentioned in the Western press, usually in passing, almost never is the most important fact about him noted: many Turks fear he’s their Ayatollah Khomeini. I do not know if they are right. But I don’t know that they’re wrong, either, and the people here who tell me his influence is a major cause for concern have proved right about many things. Outside a handful of academic publications, Gülen’s name is rarely mentioned in the Western media, and when it is, he is usually described — as the New York Times recently put it — as a “provincial Turkish preacher” who organises inspiring summer camps.
The AKP has by this means brought under its influence most of the media in Turkey, and what it hasn’t purchased or neutered, it has terrified. Since taking office in 2003, Erdogan has launched an energetic series of lawsuits against Turkish journalists and cartoonists for character defamation. No one knows how many have been sued, though the number is probably in the hundreds, and Erdogan has refused to answer this question when asked in parliament. 
Then there is the hydra-headed Ergenekon case. Ergenekon, supposedly, is an ultra-nationalist terrorist gang that schemed to foment unrest in Turkey by blowing up mosques full of supplicants, shooting down Greek fighter planes and assassinating the Turkish Nobel laureate for literature Orhan Pamuk. The unrest unleashed by this, according to prosecutors, was to be used as a pretext to topple the AKP. A sprawling investigation into this alleged network of shadowy coup-plotters has resulted in the arrest of many prominent journalists critical of the AKP, including the Ankara bureau chief of Cumhuriyet, who is still rotting in jail. Last year, in protest, the front page of Cumhuriyet was left blank but for the words: “If we go silent, who will speak?” I don’t recall seeing this reported anywhere in the international press. If it was, I will assume charitably, David Cameron merely overlooked it. Surely he would not deliberately have ignored it. That would have been cynical.
The government, meanwhile, has been locking down larger and larger portions of the internet: more than 1,000 websites have been banned, among them YouTube. Most of these bans have been initiated by the judiciary, not the executive, but the AKP has done nothing to change the laws the judiciary is enforcing.
So what’s left? Chiefly such newspapers as Zaman and Yeni Safak — the AKP’s unofficial mouthpiece — which are staunchly Islamist and connected to or controlled by the AKP or the Gülen media empire. Now, cronyism and government influence over the media is nothing new in Turkey; it would be completely misleading to suggest otherwise. What’s new, and disturbing, is the agenda this media consolidation is now serving and the eagerness of foreign journalists to swallow it whole and promote it.

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Posted by Noah Simon

Who lost Turkey?

September 21, 2010
Obama and the E.U. know exactly what is going on… they intend on pointing out that Turkey became allied with Iran during the Bush administration… but as you can see Obama is selling advanced weapons to a country that has already shown it’s intent.
President Barack Obama praised the plebiscite as proof of the “vibrancy of Turkish democracy.” As Michael Rubin has noted in National Review, not only has Obama approved the sale of 100 F-35 Joint Strike Fighters to Turkey, the Defense Department has demurred from conducting a study to see whether the sale will threaten US interests in light of Turkey’s burgeoning strategic ties with Iran. And not wishing to embarrass the administration that has given a full-throated endorsement to Erdogan’s regime, the Democrat-controlled Senate Armed Services Committee has refused to ask the Pentagon to conduct such a review.
After the Obama administration canceled the F-22 project, the F-35 will be the US military’s only advanced fighter. In light of its strategic alliance with Iran, Turkey’s possession of the jets could constitute a serious threat to US air superiority in the region.
As for NATO, the US’s most important military alliance had no comment on Turkey’s rolling Islamic revolution. This is not in the least surprising. NATO has stood at a distance as Turkey has undermined its mission in Kosovo and transformed it into a virtual Turkish colony. So too, NATO has had no comment as Turkey has worked consistently to disenfranchise Bosnia’s non-Muslim minorities and intimidate the Serbian government. At this late date, it would have been shocking if NATO had a comment of any kind on the AKP’s consolidation of its Islamist thugocracy.
Iran, for its part, is not at all squeamish about both recognizing the significance of events in Turkey and extolling them. It has reportedly agreed to contribute $25 million to the AKP to help Erdogan in his bid for reelection next year. Turkish-Iranian trade has gone up 86 percent in the past year.
In a visit to Istanbul this week, Iranian Vice President Mohammad Reza Rahimi said, “Turkey is the best friend of Iran in the world. Turkey is very important for Iran’s political and economic security. Our Supreme Leader [Ali] Khamenei also asks for acceleration of political, economic and security relations with Turkey.”
And still the West sleeps.
As it watched the AKP’s steady transformation of Turkey from staunch ally to staunch enemy, for seven years Israel tried to make light of what was happening. Indeed, its decision to opt for denial over strategic disengagement prompted it to continue selling Turkey state of the art military equipment. The IDF now acknowledges that Turkey has shared this equipment with the likes of Syria and Hizbullah.
Israel hoped that Turkey would grow so dependent on its military relationship that it would abandon its intention to ditch the alliance. That foolish hope was finally destroyed when Turkey committed an act of war on the high seas on May 31 with its terror flotilla to Gaza.
EVERY MOVE since then to make light of Turkey’s actions has been shot down by yet another Turkish affront. In its latest slight, Turkey loudly announced that Gul will not have time to meet with President Shimon Peres at the UN General Assembly in New York this week while Gul was only too pleased to free hours from his schedule to meet with Iran’s Mahmoud Ahmadinejad.
And still, perhaps out of deference to Obama, Israel has remained circumspect in its statements about the dangers Islamist Turkey poses not only to it but to the free world as a whole. And this is a shame. But then, it is hard to imagine Israeli warnings making any difference.
The US and Europe’s refusal to consider the implications of Turkey’s abandonment of the West in favor of Iran goes hand in hand with their abandonment of the cause of liberalism throughout the Middle East and the world as a whole. Among other things, their dangerous behavior is emblematic of their consummate elitism.
The likes of Obama and the heads of Europe view their own publics as mere nuisances. For Obama, the groundswell of opposition to his radical and failed economic reforms doesn’t indicate that there is something wrong with what he is doing. As he has made clear in repeated statements in recent weeks, as far as he is concerned, his steady loss of support is simply proof of the American people’s ignorance.
As for Europe, it is not a great stretch to say that the entire EU is an elitist project consolidated against the will of the peoples of Europe. The EU leadership thought nothing of ramming its expanded powers down the throats of its unwilling constituents. After the Lisbon Treaty was rejected in referendum after referendum, Europe’s leaders conspired to pass it by bureaucratic fiat.
This contempt for their own people leads the leaders of the West to disregard human rights abuses from China to Syria as unimportant. So too, it has paved the path for Obama’s courtship of the Muslim Brotherhood in the US and Egypt and his decision to back the mullahs against the Iranian people in the aftermath of the stolen presidential election in June 2009.

I’m not sure it will help things to realize what is going on… because the damage is already done. We (including Israel) are arming our enemies with the best technology. read the whole thing.

noahdavidsimon’s posterous

meanwhile it Turkey….

Police are searching for protestors who booed the prime minister following the FIBA 2010 World Basketball Championship final in Istanbul after identifying them in security footage from the arena, private news site CNNTürk reported Saturday.
The Istanbul Police Sports Security unit asked for video footage of the ceremony held after the match between Turkey and the United States in Istanbul on Sept. 12. Twenty people were identified in the footage and one of them, a minor, was detained. He was later released after a court decision.

Erdoğan was booed at the award ceremony honoring the world’s top two basketball teams. Politicians at the event reacted negatively to the jeering, while basketball players also criticized the protestors.

Team captain Hidayet “Hedo” Türkoğlu, who plays for the Phoenix Suns in the NBA, apologized to the prime minister for the protest and center Semih Erden also criticized the act, saying sports should not be mixed with politics.

HUDSON NY EDITOR’S NOTE: This newspaper, Hurriyet (meaning Freedom), is about to be fined out of existence, unless it wins on appeal. And who controls the judiciary now … ?
Strictly speaking, the Turkish constitution says this:
Article 25 Freedom of Thought and Opinion
Everyone has the right to freedom of thought and opinion. No one shall be compelled to reveal his thoughts and opinions for any reason or purpose, nor shall anyone be blamed or accused on account of his thoughts and opinions.
Article 26 Freedom of Expression and Dissemination of Thought
(1) Everyone has the right to express and disseminate his thoughts and opinion by speech, in writing or in pictures or through other media, individually or collectively. This right includes the freedom to receive and impart information and ideas without interference from official authorities. This provision shall not preclude subjecting transmission by radio, television, cinema, and similar means to a system of licensing.
(2) The exercise of these freedoms may be restricted for the purposes of protecting national security, public order and public safety, the basic characteristics of the Republic and safeguarding the indivisible integrity of the State with its territory and nation, preventing crime, punishing offenders, withholding information duly classified as a state secret, protecting the reputation and rights and private and family life of others, or protecting professional secrets as prescribed by law, or ensuring the proper functioning of the judiciary.
(3) The formalities, conditions and procedures to be applied in exercising the right to expression and dissemination of thought shall be prescribed by law.

Leave a Comment » | AKP, Ayatollah Khamenei, Bosnia, Erdogan, F-35 Joint Strike Fighters, Kosovo, Lisbon Treaty, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, Mohammad Reza Rahimi, Muslim Brotherhood, NATO, Peres, Turkey | Permalink
Posted by Noah Simon

Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu

June 24, 2010

First the Green Revolution in Iran turned out to be run by a man who was as bad as the established regime and now Turkey supposedly has a resurfacing opposition to the Islamists,

Turks Turn on Islamist Government?
Gaza flotilla backfires at home.

Adam Brickley
Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu is probably the happiest man in Turkey right now. He’s just inherited the leadership of the country’s secular socialist opposition, and now he’s reaping the benefits of an incredibly boneheaded move by the “moderate” Islamists who run the country.

A recently released poll shows the governing Justice and Development Party (AKP) of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan slipping out of first place for the first time in years. Instead, Kılıçdaroğlu’s Republican People’s Party (CHP) has inched to a razor-thin lead. If these numbers were to hold through next year’s election, the AKP’s Sunni Islamism will be dealt a heavy repudiation — as Kılıçdaroğlu is a member of the minority Alevi religious sect. He could also be Turkey’s first Kurdish Prime Minister — depending on whether or not one considers his Zaza ethnicity to be a Kurdish subgroup or a separate people (either way he’s not an ethnic Turk).

Now, this success is partly due to the fact that Kılıçdaroğlu is enjoying a surge of personal popularity as he tries to modernize the party founded by Kemal Ataturk. However, it also appears that Erdogan’s heavy support of the Gaza “aid” flotilla has blown up in his face — and that his gradual Islamization of the government may have reached a point where the public is ready to pull the plug.

To be fair, Kılıçdaroğlu has joined Erdogan in heavily condemning the Israeli raid on the flotilla — but he has also blasted Erdogan for needlessly provoking Israel. So, now that the prime minister has marched into a full-blown religious confrontation with the Jewish state, the electorate is opting for a more fair-minded leader who concerns himself with national interest over religious zealotry.

Leave a Comment » | Abdullah Gül, AKP, Erdogan, Kemal Ataturk, Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu, Kurdish, Tayyip Erdogan, Turkey, Zaza | Permalink
Posted by Noah Simon