Three pots, five pans
President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan criticized the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) during a recent speech in Istanbul. He prefers to use another abbreviation, but that does not matter.
He said, “Today, a terror organization, DAESH [an Arabic name for ISIL], operating in Syria and Iraq, is using the same method; it is trying to destroy whatever we have in our civilization, culture and roots. An Iraqi friend told me that they have burnt the beautiful library in Mosul. He also said they were torching mosques and tombs, destroying them and bombing them. Such a library in Mosul accommodating 8,000 rare pieces was burnt by the organization. Earlier, a similar incident was experienced in Timbuktu.”
He did not need to speak to an “Iraqi friend” to learn this; it was already printed everywhere as news. But, we know he does not like reading much. Good that he has a friend informing him of these incidents.
I would like to inform him of another development: ISIL smashed and shattered historic artifacts of thousands of years in museums.
You would remember, during the Marmaray construction, the footprints of Istanbul’s first inhabitants were found; it was an archeological treasure from the Neolithic era. Erdoğan said, “Three to five pots and pans delayed the Marmaray for four years, isn’t that a pity?”
Two years after saying this, he has learned that these kinds of artifacts are the joint heritage of humanity; this is a positive development.
Maybe they fear Demirtaş
Nowadays, politicians from the ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) love to criticize Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) Co-Chair Selahattin Demirtaş at every opportunity. There is one reason for it: Demirtaş has emerged as an unexpectedly strong opponent.
He increased his performance at the presidential elections and if the HDP is to cross the 10 percent election threshold it will be because of, to a huge extent, the positive impression created by Demirtaş.
The possibility that the HDP may cross the threshold is obviously being observed with concern by the AKP and the Beştepe Palace team because if the HDP passes the threshold, then the presidential system will only be a dream. Because of this, they are attacking Demirtaş.
If Demirtaş does not change, either by mistake or deliberately, the profile he has today of an enjoyable and honest man speaking in understandable terms, then the AKP’s attacks will not work, I can say.
What happened to freedom of belief?
The website of the Atheism Association was closed by a court order in Ankara. The reason for the closure was “provoking the people for hate and enmity or degrading them.”
If this were an Islamist association, we know that their site would not be closed. After the Charlie Hebdo massacre, associations and heads of associations who openly wrote praise of this crime on their websites are still open.
This Ankara court decision is a violation of freedom of belief.
To be able to say what you believe in is not only for the pious, it is for the non-pious and for non-believers as well.
Just as the pious have the right to spread their own beliefs, non-believers have the same rights.
And one more thing: The crime of “provoking the people for hate and enmity or degrading them” was committed, in its best form, with the “Kabataş lie” and no investigation has been opened yet.