Yea-sayers to abolish the 17th Turkish state

Yea-sayers to abolish the 17th Turkish state

 “Our people are making a revolution. People are stepping to form their own state. A happy April 16 to all…”

Now you would ask, “Which people?” Is it the 51 percent who will say “Yes,” or the 51 percent who will say


The person who claimed the above is Mehmet Uçum. He is a former leftist, but now an advisor to President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan. He is on the side of the yea-sayers. 

He is openly saying that “If a ‘yes’ comes out of the referendum, the people would be establishing their own states.”

Do you see what we will be voting for this Sunday? 

If you read the sentence the other way around, it also says, “If the ‘Yes’ comes out of the referendum, we will demolish the 17th Turkish state.”

So, the issue may be called a struggle between “the yea-sayers who are trying to demolish the 17th Turkish state” and “the naysayers who are trying to prevent the 17th Turkish state from being demolished.” 

Now, let us look into the math of abolishing a state and the founding of a new state with 51 percent. 

Let us assume that the entire Thrace region said “No.” Let us assume that more than half of the population in the Aegean and the Mediterranean regions, all the way to the Syrian border, said “No.” 

Well, what’s going to happen then? 

Will they also have the right to form a new state? What about the region you were born? The southeast; especially there… What if a predominant “No” comes out of there? 

You know what dear advisor, there are still four days to the referendum; why don’t you change this statement, why don’t you listen to what you said and delete that tweet… 

As a matter of fact, I can explain this in the Aegean province of İzmir. I can do that. But would you be able to explain this to your birthplace, the southeastern province of Diyarbakır? The issue of the “51 percent of the population having the right to establish their own state” issue. 

Who won the Pulitzer Prize and why 

This year the Pulitzer “international reporting” prize was awarded to the staff of The New York Times. They won it for chronicling the covert and sometimes deadly actions taken by President Vladimir Putin’s government to grow Russian influence abroad. The reporting series explored the rise of online “troll armies.” 
One of the finalists was a staff from the Wall Street Journal for the “coverage of events in Turkey as that nation careened from a promising democracy to a near-autocracy.”

Pulitzer is the world’s most prestigious journalism award. Are we happy because of these? Or are we going to put our head between our hands and on the morning of April 17 ask, “Where did we go wrong?”

Not a proud view for the ruling party

I am watching Istanbul. I don’t remember how many elections I experienced in this city. I saw three military coups and three interim regimes. Neither in democratic eras nor in any of the military periods have I seen such a biased, such a forceful and such disproportionate campaigning.  

I ran daily Hürriyet’s Moscow office for four years during the Soviet era. I have never witnessed such a heavy and overpowering state campaign there. 

In my entire 70 years of life, the only example of this campaign I saw was in Baghdad in 1977. It was during the Baath period when Ahmed Hassan al-Bakr and Saddam Hussein were in power.

I wonder how citizens will be affected by this inordinate and disproportional state project. “I wonder whether this much imbalanced and unjust campaign can backfire and increase the number of yea-sayers?” Columnist Fehmi Koru had said previously.  

This will be an interesting test on sociological and political behavior.