YUSUF KANLI > Ottoman Commonwealth

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I am neither a sociologist, nor a psychiatrist. How can the Turkish aspiration to somehow, and in some form, rehash the Ottoman Empire be explained?

I asked some friends who are respectable sociologists and they proved to be cowardly enough to swiftly silence me out of an effort to avoid a possible confrontation with the tall, bold, bald and ever-angry man aspiring to become the first-ever elected sultan of this fast socio-political regression. Can anyone blame them? No, definitely not. In a country where political opponents and critics are packed in boxes labeled “terrorist, handle roughly” and confined to a high security concentration camp in the Thracian Turkey, it requires more than courage to come up and say something that might enrage the sultan or his clan of political Islam.

The sultan in the making and his clan are getting more and more courageous, assertive, aggressive and chatty. After all, is there an alternative strong enough to challenge them in the upcoming, or any election in the foreseeable future? No. The nationalists are determined to remain an excessively rhetorical but nationalist salutation group. Social democrats are still trying to figure out what their views on important and trivial issues of the country might be. Some idiots are still looking at the military barracks as if soldiers have not gone to bed with democracy whenever they found the opportunity, but are “still” the “custodians” of democracy. Sorry, they are indeed complete imbeciles.

The ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) is just six votes shy of the required parliamentary majority for a constitutional amendment through referendum. Buying six votes is not a problem in Turkish politics, but there is a bigger complication: Current President Abdullah Gül, his men in the AKP and some influential Islamist-conservatives are against a presidential system of governance and thus to becoming sultan aspirations of Erdoğan. Our Sultan in the making needs to enhance his coalition if he wants to achieve his masterly design. Playing the Kurdish card; turning on to nationalists; recruiting a few more eminent Islamofascists, pardon Islamist-conservatives, perhaps can help…but, not all in one basket of course.

Anyhow, at least the vizier of extraterritorial affairs Ahmet Davutoğlu brought to his master a piece of good news from Algeria; the only country that Turks officially apologized for aligning during their war of independence with their former colonial power. According to Davutoğlu, Algerian President Abdulaziz Buteflika has suggested during the visit establishment under Turkey’s leadership of a Commonwealth of Ottoman States. Ottoman Sultan Abdulhamit, who worked a lot on that idea as a way of prolonging the demise of the empire, would perhaps love the suggestion. Davutoğlu was apparently delighted as well.

Creative imagination must be a great gift for artists and artisans, but statesman must be guided and ordained with something else, particularly with a sense of realism.

Commonwealth of Ottoman States, oh la la…


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Ozgur Erhan

11/30/2012 5:48:07 PM

Commonwealth? Or Califate?

Red Tail

11/30/2012 5:05:10 PM

Dogan. You speak so highly about this Muslim Union and always very negatively about the West. But at another place you wrote that you have lived 50 years in the West. How on earth did you decide to move and then spend your entire life in a place you seem to hate, instead of moving to a Muslim country which you seem to love? Why not move to Iran or Saudi for example, they apply Muslim legislation? Why stay where you hate it, and not move to something you love? You are free to choose and no force.

mara mcglothin

11/30/2012 4:53:04 PM

TRUTHER You are so right. The majority of Turks don't care of McDonalds, Burger King, Coke, Pepsi, Ralph Lauren and the like. They have no wish to become more Western and don't like to support their products either. It must be all the tourists who buy from the Happy Menu?

mara mcglothin

11/30/2012 4:50:24 PM

DOGAN Your plans perfect except you would have to stop everyone from fighting amongst themselves, and that is not going to happen. Everyone would be too worried about who would have the power and how much power they would have and on and on. This would never work for the precise reason no country in the ME has been able to achieve peaceful democracy. Everyone is too busy worrying about everyone else. Very sad.

dogan kemal ileri

11/30/2012 4:31:22 PM

amarican american we would naturally be as courteous and accomodating to the christians as they are to the Muslimans living inside the EU now.

Turk down under

11/30/2012 4:25:59 PM

Brilliant! Always enjoy reading your work Mr. Kanli. @Dogan- Who are you kidding?? Innovation? The only wealth the Arab world has came straight from the ground, natural resource-as you say. Did they educate their people? Advance in sciences, technology, medicine? Feed their starving brothers in neighboring countries? Oh I know!They made their desert flourish-green with there advancement in agronomy. Oh no! I believe that was Israel the country that doesn't have that all precious natural resource


11/30/2012 2:26:48 PM

@Sinan...I don't think Turkey (Citizens) wants be even more 'Americanized' do they? Erdogan follows a little too closely in their footsteps if you ask me. If you take a step back have a look, America ain't doing too well at the moment. Even when it came to Israel Erdogan talked a lot, like he usually does, but at the end of it? He looked good to the public without really doing anything! Egypt stepped in and took control. Don't be surprised if Erdogan is still friends with Israel behind doors!

Nikos T.

11/30/2012 12:34:55 PM

AKR and Erdogan is not the problem. Reading comments about unions based on religion, one can understand that Turkish people is the problem. The only solution for the so called Muslim countries is education. However, as long as shariah rules, education will produce more and more religion motivated fanatics that will never be adopted by the free, non-Muslim world.

Rimon Tree

11/30/2012 12:19:16 PM

Dear Mr. Kanli, you certainly do not lack courage! I dearly hope you will not have to pay a high prize for it! Brilliant piece again. I still have not lost hope into the Turkish people, sooner or later they may realize what is going on here to their disadvantage, Once the esteemed PM gets his plans through, there will not be any rescue any more like their was no rescue very soon after the German vulture of the 20th century came to power BY ELECTIONS!

Recep Ozel

11/30/2012 12:10:10 PM

Dear Yusuf, this is great writing! and Sinan Osman, you are spot on. Most Turks in Turkey are unfortunately even more backward than than the PM!!
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