Are the French enemies of Islam?
Borrowing the phrase from a wire service, “Turkey told France to block the genocide bill, or else.” France has chosen “else.” And hell broke loose – ironically, in Turkey, not in France.
The first set of deadly blows came from the state football betting company, which displaced French games from its regular list of bets, and from the mayor of Ankara, Melih Gökçek, who promised to erect an Algerian massacre/genocide monument right across the French Embassy compound in Ankara. Mr. Gökçek should think twice, or else half of Turkey’s diplomatic missions across the world may have to face Armenian genocide monuments soon. As for the betting blow, hats off to the creative Turkishness. Not even the devil could have thought about such a punishing sanction.
Poor French... With the de-listing of their football games on Turkish betting sites, they may soon lose their G-7 membership.
And Finance Minister Mehmet Şimşek prophesied that “those countries who recognize Armenian genocide will one day come one by one and apologize to the superpower-to-be Turkey.” If that is a good guess, why panic? Why play the offended boy who fetches his football and threatens never to play with the neighborhood lads? Cool down, honorable ministers, and just wait for the day when the world will queue up to apologize to you.
And according to Labor Minister Faruk Çelik, “if the French King Francois lived today he would have chopped off [French President Nicolas] Sarkozy’s tongue.” Chopping one’s tongue off in the 21st century? That may be a socially acceptable practice in some parts of the world in 2011, but certainly not in Mr. Sarkozy’s France. Watch out, Minister Çelik, you are unwillingly revealing your cultural/political codes.
But, as always, the super-hero of all Turkish super-heroes in the most trendy Turkish pastime “who hates Sarkozy/the French the most” was Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan who accused Sarkozy/the French for “enmity against Muslims.” Are Sarkozy and the French enemies of Islam because the French Parliament (not yet the Senate) passed a bill that criminalizes the denial of Armenian genocide?
A plausible answer to that question should not require hundreds of tiring scientific tests and research. Just look around the “Muslim world,” Mr. Erdoğan, and you can see for yourself. How many Muslim countries officially and/or publicly condemned and retaliated against the Danish cartoons which Muslims deemed were hostile to their faith? Ah, yes, so many.
And how many countries officially and/or publicly condemned and retaliated against the French Parliament’s decision to make genocide denial a crime? None, other than Turkey. Will Muslim Syria, Mr. Erdoğan’s ex-love affair, for example, impose sanctions on France because of that bill? Will Egypt, Mr. Erdoğan’s new love affair, do so? Pakistan? Libya? Iraq? Saudi Arabia? Tunisia? The Arab League? Indonesia?
Or why did the president of the mullah regime in Iran, Mahmoud Ahmadinejad, pay a heartfelt state visit to Yerevan on the same day when the French Parliament passed the bill that criminalizes the denial of a Muslim (and caliphate, too!) genocide against Christians? Is Iran not a Muslim country? Are the Shiite Muslims collaborating with the enemies of Islam? To sum it up, Mr. Erdoğan should explain why over 99 percent of the Muslim world does not view Sarkozy/the French as enemies of Islam because their Parliament passed the genocide denial bill.
Mr. Erdoğan can always find those answers in another Muslim vs. Christian dispute in which Turkey remains the solitary Muslim player: Cyprus. Why would, Mr. Erdoğan should think, not a single Muslim country, other than Turkey, recognize the Turkish Cypriot statelet? Where is the Muslim solidarity?
Too many questions... But they ought to be asked. And there are even more – coming Friday.