The aggravated torment of advanced democracy
BÜŞRA ERSANLIFrom the very first moment I was taken into custody on Oct. 28, 2011, I knew that the real accusation against me was my membership in the Peace and Democracy Party (BDP) Assembly and the party activities carried out during the time spared from my full-time work at university. As the participation of the BDP’s women in politics and their success in local governments increasingly grew, the “anger” that this situation gave rise to struck back in the form of defamation against me.
The main idea concerning my person in Folder 50 of the so-called “KCK” indictment and case file is the fact that I allegedly carried out – as a “leading figure” – instructions from the Kurdistan Workers’ Party (PKK), as well as those of Abdullah Öcalan cited in his interview notes, and my “great efforts” in this regard. In fact, we need to think of this as the BDP instead of the PKK because there is no evidence of my PKK membership/leadership. In any case, such evidence would be impossible to find. The notes I have taken in dozens and hundreds of meetings (academy and party are not even of equal weight here, since the academic field covers a great part of my life) have been reshuffled to put forward “matchless” opinions.
The police say, “It has been noted that you have been in and out of the country time and again between 2000 and 2012” and they conclude that “you have been active abroad within the framework of your activities within the PKK terrorist organization and KCK/TM,” (Folder 50, pg. 14). Apparently, there is no need to check all the letters of authorization I obtained from Marmara University since what my activities are is so obvious to them.
So the indictment reaches the following conclusion in document no. 390-391: “…It is evident that there is an effort to show that the Kurdish people are right in their demands, therefore, in a way, she considers that the PKK/Kongra-Gel terrorist organization is also right.” Gosh! You are being made out to be a “leader” and at the same time you consider, in a way, that they are right.
One of the telephone conversations referred to is one with Baki Gül who had invited me to Roj TV to talk about the importance of the Labor, Freedom and Democracy Block. I answered him by saying, “I would like to come, but I can’t.” And he says, “Next time, then.” My answer to Baki, who invited me many times and whom I talked to only on the phone, is “Hopefully Baki, hopefully.” The conclusion drawn from this? “It has been borne out that activities were undertaken to prepare a so-called ‘democratic constitution’ under the leadership of the BDP, that symposiums were organized within this framework with the participation of various circles and that Büşra Ersanlı openly declared through her words ‘Hopefully Baki, hopefully’ that she wished to take part knowingly and intentionally in the so-called democratic constitution activities in line with the instructions of Abdullah Öcalan and high-level members of the organization,” (Folder 50, pp. 365-366).
That I would have been involved in activities for a constitution “of words” (“a so-called democratic constitution”) whereas a constitution “of deeds” was in the making, that I have supported the Labor, Freedom and Democracy Block, that by saying “hopefully, hopefully” I ruined everything and have been in prison for eight months, that I have been recorded in the prison records as a member of an armed terrorist organization – only to have been later “promoted” to leadership by the indictment – all of this must be one of the saddest examples of humor in Turkey. Indeed the material used for evidence of these “crimes” is provided in the words “hopefully, hopefully.” There you have it, the path leading to the aggravated torment of advanced democracy.
The part concerning my person in the 2,400-page indictment consists of 27 pages. The totality of Folder 50 of the 582-page case file, of which I have categorized 400 pages, is about me. First of all, all of this can be clearly seen within the context of freedom of expression. What do these contain? I divided them into two groups. The first one is of a “predominantly academic” nature, the second one consists of “telephone conversations, [as well as] official and very personal notes.”
It is clear that there is a great effort in the KCK indictment and Folder 50 of the case file to accuse me in a hateful tone as if I were an enemy, based totally on the findings and comments of the police. Thus, not only has my intellectual and academic freedom been totally violated, but the reshuffling of dozens of meeting notes quoted out of context constitutes an insult to my profession and to myself. How such a feeling of enmity – which I myself do not have despite the great injustice inflicted upon me – has been built up in the opinions expressed in the indictment remains a mystery.
This abridged article was originally published in daily Radikal.