A new climate?
What has changed? Was not one still the bold, bald, always angry, antagonistic man cursing at everyone? Was not one still the clumsy person who had evaporated hopes of the social democrats of Turkey? Were they not the very same people who just the other day were leveling each other with the harshest possible verbal bombardments? Yet, since they finally came together and discussed for some 60 minutes how the country could tackle with separatist terrorism and resolve problems of its Kurdish population, they were elevated to the status of “statesmen.”
Indeed, the fact that after so many years the leaders of the two biggest parties came together face to face to discuss some nationally-important issues was far more important than what they actually discussed. Turkey needed this atmosphere.
It would have been great if the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP), which definitely ought to be one of the fundamental components in the resolution of the Kurdish problem, flatly shunned this initiative of the main opposition Republican People’s Party (CHP). Worse, the MHP accused the CHP of becoming a “collaborator” with the AKP and the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) – the political extension of the separatist gang – in plotting against Turkey’s national and territorial integrity. That was unfortunate, and hopefully the MHP will realize soon the fundamental role that it should play in this country’s efforts to achieve peace, tranquility and prosperity through embracing all our differences.
The one-hour-long summit of Recep Tayyip Erdoğan and Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu was not aimed at resolving the Kurdish issue with a magical touch. Yet, the two coming together and, moreover, the prime minister suggesting a two-party consultative mechanism to deal with the Kurdish issue should the MHP block an all-party parliamentary commission, was a landmark development. True, most probably Erdoğan is acting with political opportunism in mind and is trying to pull the CHP into its ambiguous Kurdish opening plans. Nevertheless, can this country have a real Kurdish resolution without at least the main opposition also engaged in the process?
Could the CHP’s offer to the ruling AKP to establish an all-party parliamentary commission – like the constitution-writing commission – and the creation of a forum of “wise men” just be a life buoy thrown to the AKP, which is trying to get out of its own Kurdish opening that has turned into sinking sand? But, was the AKP dragged alone into that sand? Are we not all together in the same boat? Indeed, the CHP did not offer any new ideas. Is there anything spectacular in it? Indeed no, there was nothing earth shattering. But, the entire nation welcomed it as great news. Why? The nation is fed up with political fist fighting. It is thirsty for cooperation, collaboration, peace.
Some 40,000 or more sons of this country - Kurds, Turks, Arabs, all ethnicities - have fallen over the past quarter century. They were all our sons, irrespective of what outfit they fell in.
Nothing was achieved with Wednesday’s meeting, but since Wednesday there can be a new climate. A climate of hope, although everyone is aware that prospects of success are rather dim…