Sharing Turkey’s dreams
Of course our topic is the Gezi Park protests that have spread throughout the entire Turkey.
Foreign Minister Ahmet Davutoğlu and Youth and Sports Minister Suat Kılıç have declared they were concerned that Turkey’s image was affected negatively.
Kılıç’s statement yesterday went like this: “Turkey has huge dreams, huge targets, but the pictures displayed have descended over our dreams like a nightmare.”
I think the key point of the matter is exactly in these sentences because the government unfortunately was unable to make the man on the street and most importantly the youth become a part of, and share in, Turkey’s huge dreams…
Most of the time, it decided on its dreams all alone by itself, moreover some of them were hidden from the public until the last moment.
For example, we, the Istanbul residents heard from Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan the other day on a TV channel, while he was being interviewed by a colleague, that the Atatürk Cultural Center (AKM) was to be “demolished;” we were assuming that the AKM was to be renovated with the support of Sabancı Holding. We were guessing that work was continuing inside; that, Atatürk Cultural Center would be opened in September or in October.
In the Financial Times analysis the other day, Prime Minister Erdoğan was found suitable to the title “pharaoh” and the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) had transformed into a party of “contractors” that demolished fast everything that came on their way. An important and correct analysis that explained one dimension of the protests.
On my part, I do not remember how many times I have written the order of contractors who only abide by the track of the interests of the government, who do not listen to the warnings of the youth, environmentalists, scientists, experts and nongovernmental organizations, who absolutely close their ears to what they are trying to explain.
My readers would remember; I guess it was only two weeks ago I wrote on Prime Minister Erdoğan’s another “crazy project,” the Kanal İstanbul.
According to all the scientists I conferred with, the Kanal İstanbul Project will threaten the Turkish Straits System which is based on an extremely volatile and sensitive balance.
Kanal İstanbul should never be an imposition project without any debate, without consulting scientists.
A friend of mine who knows the Third Bridge project very well read the weekend interview of the Ankara contractor İbrahim Çeçen who has undertaken he project and has sent this email to him in panic:
“We thought the ring roads and access roads of the Third Bridge were to be built with underground tunnels. Now, we are reading that in order to lower costs, there will be viaducts. Aren’t viaducts the termination of the green?”
Among the Turks, it is quite a widespread belief that Turkey, in pursuit of economic development and becoming the 10th economy of the world by the year 2023, is facing a brutal attack against its nature and cultural heritage.
The picture is quite clear when you look at some of results of a survey conducted by the Gezici Research Group right before the Gezi Protests. Among those who participated in the Gezici survey, 82.2 percent were against a mall at the Gezi Park; 64.8 percent of them thought green areas in Istanbul were decreasing.
Some 82.6 percent believe that a legal restriction must be introduced for those skyscrapers that damage the silhouette of the city.
Turkey’s dreams are indeed beautiful; only if they are shared by everybody.