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“Ein Reich, Ein Volk, Ein Erdogan!” (and “Ein Morsi, too”)

Tayyip Erdogan

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COMMENT: The far-right, Nazi-linked WikiLeaks is back in the news, with the same coterie of front-runners celebrating their actions.

When we last saw Our Heroes, the WikiLeaks crowd (Pirate Bay/Pirate Party/Anonymous) were in the process of being utilized to further the covert operation popularly known as “The Arab Spring,” aimed at bringing “corporatism” (as Mussolini termed his system) to the Middle East and Muslim worlds.

Never ones for learning from experience, the WikiLeaks crowd is celebrating the actions of Eddie the Friendly Spook [Snowden]. “Snowden’s Ride” has all the earmarks of a U-2 Incident-style destabilization of Obama, and beyond that, the U.S. and U.K.

Under the circumstances, it may prove instructive to revisit “The Muslim Brotherhood Spring,” as we call it.

A major theme of the so-called “Arab Spring” was the belief that by allowing the Muslim Brotherhood unfettered access to the reins of political power, the resulting regimes would resemble the “modern,” “democratic” government of Tayyip Erdogan in Turkey.

(The For The Record series on the “Muslim Brotherhood Spring” runs from FTR #733 through FTR #739.)

 In FTR #’s 737, 738, 739, we noted that Erdogan’s government was a direct outgrowth of the Bank Al-Taqwa complex and an extension of the Islamic fascism of the Muslim Brotherhood. In addition, Erdogan’s regime has strong links to euro-fascists and the Underground Reich.

As civic unrest stemming from popular dissatisfaction with Erdogan’s governance have spread, he has responded with tactics and rhetoric precisely and eerily echoing the rhetoric of classic fascism. Borrowing from the rhetorical arsenal of Hitler and Mussolini, Erdogan has staged mass rallies of rabid supporters, used verbiage conflating the state and “the people” with himself, accused the opposition of being part of an amorphous conspiracy involving “foreign interests,” “speculators,” and the media–translation “Da Joos.”

Morsi has responded to opposition in a similar fashion, both tactically and rhetorically.

In a brutally ironic way, the “Arab Spring” operation has indeed resulted in the realization of Erdogan-style governance in the Middle East.

“Turkey Expands Violent Reaction to Street Unrest” by Tim Arango, Sebnem Arsu and Ceylan Yeginsu; The New York Times; 6/17/2013; pp. A1-A7.

EXCERPT: The Turkish authorities widened their crackdown on the antigovernment protest movement on Sunday, taking aim not just at the demonstrators themselves, but also at the medics who treat their injuries, the business owners who shelter them and the foreign news media flocking here to cover a growing political crisis threatening to paralyze the government of Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan.

After an intense night of street clashes that represented the worst violence in nearly three weeks of protests, Mr. Erdogan rallied hundreds of thousands of his supporters on Sunday–many of them traveling on city buses and ferries that the government had mobilized for the event–at an outdoor arena on the shores of the Sea of Marmara. . . .

. . . . In at least two strongholds of support for Mr. Erdogan, the nature of the confrontation seemed to take more dangerous turn, as antigovernment protesters clashed with his civilian backers. In Mr. Erdogan’s childhood neighbor hood in Istanbul, a group of government supporters joined the police with sticks and fought against protesters, according to one witness. . . .

. . . Even before Mr. Erdogan took the stage to deliver his nearly two-hour-long speech, the master of ceremonies had bashed the foreign news media, which the prime minister has suggested is part of a foreign plot, along with financial speculators and terrorists, to topple his government.

“CNN International, are you ready for this?” shouted the announcer to the sea of people waving flags bearing Mr. Erdogan’s face and the yellow and white logo of his Justice and Development Party, known by its Turkish initials as A.K.P.

Mr. Erdogan then singled out BBC, CNN and Reuters, saying, “for days, you fabricated news.”

“You portrayed Turkey differently to the world,” he continued. “You are left alone with your lies. This nation is not the one that you misrepresented to the world.”

At least 400 people were detained on Sunday, according to the Istanbul Bar Association, with local news reports saying that some journalists had been among them. One foreign photographer documenting the clashes Saturday night said a police officer had torn his gas mask off him while in a cloud of tear gas, and forced him to clear his memory card of photographs.

Some doctors and nurses who treated protesters were detained by security forces on Sunday, according to the legal offices of the Istanbul Chamber of Doctors. Lawyers have been held by the authorities in recent days. Mr. Erdogan said Sunday that even the owners of luxury hotels near Taksim Square who had provided refuge to protesters fleeing the chaos of the police raid were linked to terrorism.

“We know very well the ones that sheltered in the hotels those who cooperated with terror,” he said at the rally. “Will they not be held accountable? If we do not hold them accountable, then the nation will hold us accountable.” . . . .

. . . . At Mr. Erdogan’s rally on the seashore, near the walls of the ancient city, enthusiastic government supporters voiced anger at its opponents. Walking up to the rally grounds, people chanted, “Go gas them, Captain! Break their hands!” A helicopter overhead to provide panoramic footage for state television. . . .

“Tyrannies across the World Are Crushing Dissent. In Britain Contempt for the Political Class is Growing. Is It Possible that Democracy Is Dying?” by Max Hastings; Daily Mail; 6/21/2013.

EXCERPT: . . . . Naive Europeans hailed the 2010 ‘Arab Spring’ as promising a new era in the Middle East. Yet it seems more likely that those nations – Tunisia, Egypt and Libya – will merely be ruled by new autocrats.

The truth is that democracy is ailing – not least here in Britain. Many people despise and distrust politicians. . . .

. . . . Earlier this month, Turkey’s prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, adopted one of the notorious phrases of the old fascist dictators: ‘My patience is exhausted.’

He then committed thousands of riot police with batons and tear gas to remove peaceful protesters from Istanbul’s Taksim Square.

Erdogan has said that democracy is an instrument to be exploited only as long as it is useful. He is thought to aspire to changing Turkey’s constitution to make himself an elected dictator.

Most educated urban Turks are appalled by his desire to break with the country’s century-old tradition of secularism and to once more put Islam at the heart of law.

He has restricted alcohol sales and attempted to criminalise adultery. More journalists are in prison in Turkey than in China.

Erdogan has been able to act despotically because as prime minister, he has delivered economic growth. He has won three elections through the votes of the small business class and rural peasantry, who value stability and traditional values far above personal freedom.

He can claim popular support, even though his style of rule is a travesty of democracy. Turkey is only the latest example of a nation bent on rolling back personal freedoms or resisting demands for it. . . .


2 comments for ““Ein Reich, Ein Volk, Ein Erdogan!” (and “Ein Morsi, too”)”

  1. Well this is predictably depressing: The Brazilian right-wing is trying to take over the protests:

    Brazil’s left and right struggle for ownership of protests

    Rival groups split on the political direction of the protests, with claims two organisations back military rule

    Jonathan Watts in Rio de Janeiro
    The Guardian, Wednesday 26 June 2013 14.52 EDT

    Rival organisations behind Brazil’s huge street demonstrations are struggling for control amid conflicting views about the political direction the movement should take.

    With further action planned for Wednesday evening, the leftwing groups who initiated the marches suspect opposition parties are trying to hijack the protests and use them as a platform to challenge president Dilma Rousseff’s government before next year’s presidential election.

    The protesters have proved a formidable political force, notching up victory after victory in the past week and forcing Rousseff’s Workers’ Party and regional leaders into a series of concessions. But the scale has ebbed in recent days. Although demonstrations continue on a daily basis in Rio de Janeiro, São Paulo and dozens of other cities, they are on a smaller scale than last Thursday’s march of more than a million.

    The vast majority of marches have been unified, but there have been a few shouting matches between rival groups competing to set the ideological direction of the protests. Some would like a stronger focus on inequality and improving conditions in favelas. Others are pushing for tax cuts and a crackdown on corrupt officials.

    In online chat rooms and microblogs, there is speculation that police are using agents provocateurs to stir up violence and pave the way for a coup. Evidence for that is scant, but differences have become more apparent. Groups such as Anonymous are calling for a period of reflection, and arranged workshops and public meetings in Rio this week to discuss where to go next.

    But several organisations that are closer to the right pressed ahead with smaller gatherings on Monday and urged more on Thursday. Two of them, Organisation Opposed to Corruption and Online Revolution, advocate the return of militarism, according to an article on the Estado de São Paulo website. This followed tension in São Paulo during last Thursday’s march when some groups burned the flags of the Workers Party.

    “We live in a democracy and this reaction is a kind of nationalism taken to an extreme. I fear this may be hidden fascism,” said Talita Saito, a 21-year-old law student at the protest.

    Such incidents have so far been on the fringes. More positive is the sign of a new political debate that has been stirred up by formerly apathetic multitudes who are turning out in vast numbers to peacefully back the protests.

    But those who initiated the protests in support of cheap public transport are uneasy that part of the movement has morphed towards a campaign for lower taxes.

    A major reason for the success of last week’s marches was that the organisers rejected affiliation with political parties. The amorphous movement embraced frustrations felt across the political spectrum, many of them brought into relief by the Confederations Cup.

    About 50,000 people joined a demonstration on Wednesday outside a stadium in Belo Horizonte, where Brazil were playing Uruguay in a Confederations Cup semi-final. Police fired tear gas and protesters threw stones. In Brasilia, where the other semi-final was taking place, police shut down traffic in the city centre in expectation of unrest.

    After last Thursday’s march, the huge range of motivations was evident in the hand-written placards pinned on to the walls – “Schools not Stadiums”, “70bn in Corruption”, “End Police Violence”, “Stop PEC 37” (a bill that would weaken the power of the public minister to investigate official wrongdoing) and “No to the Gay Cure” (a reference to evangelical politician Marco Feliciano’s call for Brazil’s medical establishment to treat homosexuality as a disease.

    In recent days, Rousseff – a former student radical – has talked to organisers and responded to some of their concerns. On Monday, she promised a referendum on political reform, tighter penalties for corruption, a 50bn real (£15bn) programme for public transport and more support for healthcare and education. Another concession was won from legislators, who dropped the PEC 37 bill.The groups behind the protests say Rousseff’s promises are too vague and fall short of demands they have regarding evictions of residents for mega-events, excessive police violence (seen on Tuesday in a raid on the Maré favela in Rio that left at least nine people dead) and wider issues of inequality and environmental destruction.

    A statement by the Passe Libre group said the government has to do more to rein in paramilitary police, who have shot protesters with rubber bullets and used teargas indiscriminately. “There is an urgent need to demilitarise the police and put in place a national policy to regulate less lethal weapons, which are banned in many countries and condemned by international bodies,” the group said.

    Alan Fragoso, one of the organisers of the Fórum de Lutas group that initiated the protests, said the demonstrations would continue. “Even if the protesters do not have full political consciousness we must seize the moment to promote the inclusion of political debate in the daily life of Brazilians,” he said.

    In response to Rousseff’s promises and concerns about the vandalism that followed clashes with police, the organisers plan to set new guidelines for the protests.

    And now Bulgeria appears to have a growing anti-oligarch/anti-corruption movement. A big focus of the protest is the recent appointment of a politician with a history of corruption to a newly empowered “security czar” post. The new security czar is also a member of the ethnic Turkish party and a frequent target of the far-right nationalist Ataka party. Ataka is of the “anti-capitalist”/”anti-corruption” strain of the far-right universe and has seen its popularity surge in the last year. So let’s hope the far-right stays far away from this one:

    The spirit of protest in Brazil and Turkey has now swept into Bulgaria

    Tens of thousands of Bulgarians are voicing their anger over political corruption, abuse of power and economic hardship

    John O’Brennan
    guardian.co.uk, Tuesday 25 June 2013 13.02 EDT

    In recent weeks the world has been transfixed by protests in Turkey and Brazil. Fewer media outlets have reported on the anti-government protests in Bulgaria, now well into their second week. But make no mistake about it: Bulgaria is undergoing a profound crisis of representation.

    Every night for more than a week up to 10,000 people have taken to the streets of Sofia, initially protesting against the appointment on 14 June of the media oligarch Delyan Peevski as Bulgaria’s “security tsar”, the head of the State Agency for National Security (Dans), the Bulgarian CIA.

    Peevski, who is 32, comes from a well-connected family that owns Bulgaria’s largest newspaper and television group (it controls 80% of print media in the country) and has no experience in the security sector. In 2007 he was sacked from his post as deputy minister and investigated for attempted blackmail. He is an MP for the ethnic Turkish party, the Movement for Rights and Freedoms (MRF), which supports the prime minister Plamen Oresharski’s governing coalition, led by the Bulgarian Socialist party (BSP). His appointment took place without a debate in the National Assembly.

    Dans is the agency responsible both for Bulgaria’s internal and external security. Its role was elevated significantly in the wake of the terrorist attack on Burgas airport in July 2012 (attributed to Hezbollah) which killed five Israeli tourists and their Bulgarian bus driver. This executive role has been strengthened even further recently after controversial amendments in the Dans legislation were signed giving the organisation responsibility for dealing with organised crime.

    Bulgarians are protesting against far-reaching and systematic corruption and the “capture” of the state by rent-seeking oligarchic networks. Oresharski was appointed by the BSP to head a so-called “expert” government, after a general election in April produced a tight outcome. The technocratic government came about because the leading figures within the two largest political parties, the BSP and the centre-right Gerb (Citizens for European Development of Bulgaria) were widely discredited. And although the prime minister has now withdrawn the appointment of Peevski, for protesters the episode suggested that even respected figures like Oresharski are incapable of shaking off the shadowy world of oligarchic power in Bulgaria.

    In Bulgaria it is often impossible to know where organised crime ends and legitimate business begins. The nexus between the two is characterised by complex bureaucratic structures, opaque corporate accounting and a maze of offshore accounts. In Varna, Bulgaria’s third largest city, the protests have taken direct aim at TIM, a business conglomerate allied to Gerb and long the real power in the region. Some estimates suggest that it controls up to 70% of Varna’s economy, including most of the tourist infrastructure. When protesters in Varna yell “M-A-F-I-A” they are automatically collapsing business into politics and implicating local municipal officials as the agents of this powerful oligarchic network.

    Varna perfectly illustrates why the current protests are largely non-party-policitical and anti-politics in tone: the definitive division in today’s Bulgaria is no longer between right and left, but between the citizens and the mafia. This is a world where the guilty don’t just go unpunished; they ascend to the highest citadels of power.

    Although corruption and the abuse of power are the central themes of this protest, economic hardship also plays a role. New data from the EU demonstrates that Bulgarians have the lowest standard of living in the European Union, at around 50% of the EU average. Even Croatia, which will accede to the EU on 1 July, is significantly more prosperous than Bulgaria.

    The irony here is not lost on Bulgarians. At the onset of the EU financial crisis in 2008, Bulgaria had one of the lowest levels of public debt in Europe at 15% of GDP. Its budget deficit was below 3%. And yet the government of Boyko Borissov embarked on a foolish programme of austerity measures, the logic of which was almost entirely predicated on demonstrating to Brussels what a good pupil Bulgaria now was. Reductions in public spending coupled with large increases in the price of electricity and other utilities brought people out on to the streets in February. But, like Turkey, what began as a protest against a specific appointment has quickly mutated into a general opposition to the government.

    Oresharski also has to grapple with increasing ethnic tensions in the country. Many Bulgarians resent the influence of the junior coalition party, the MRF which represents mainly the Turkish minority (about 10% of the population). The far-right party Ataka, which won 23 seats and 7.3% of the vote in the recent parliamentary election, has sought to exploit this sentiment at every opportunity. Its leader, Volen Siderov, continues to stoke the flames of hatred against both the ethnic Turks and the Roma population.

    Note that while we should hope Ataka stays far away from the protest movement, that’s sort of hopeless hope given the nature of the movement. But at least it looks like Bulgarians are generally wary of these guys and appear to be striving to avoid violence altogether…despite Ataka’s attempts:

    The Conversation
    Protests in Bulgaria: the Unnoticed Uprising
    by Anna Plyushteva

    As in Istanbul, recent protests in Sofia began with a single, specific issue. In Bulgaria, it was the appointment of Delyan Peevski as head of the country’s national security agency. At just 32 years of age, Peevski owns various large businesses, including TV channels and other media outlets.

    So when he was hastily appointed to one of the top jobs in the country, on June 14, tens of thousands of people took to the streets within hours. Daily demonstrations have continued for more than a week with no sign of abating. But why are they so persistent, in a country where public life is usually described as politically apathetic?

    In another parallel with Gezi Park and Brazil, protests have gone on even after officials backed down on the original cause for the outrage. On June 19, Peevski’s appointment was withdrawn, as politicians muttered statements about admitting mistakes and the wise voice of the people. “Keep your apologies, give us your resignations,” chanted the crowds, and the rallies raged on.

    A brief overview of the developments in the days since can begin to shed light on the questions of why, why now, and why the near-complete absence of international coverage?

    The lack of violent clashes goes some way towards explaining the silence of major news outlets – not only are numbers in Sofia much smaller than in Istanbul or Rio, but also the Bulgarian police union declared official support for the protests. So no riot gear, no tear gas, and not a single smashed window. Despite the angry picket signs, the daily demos have been described by some as “a bit of a lifestyle event”, complete with dogs, young children, and plenty of cold beer.

    On this occasion, Bulgarians are not revolting about income levels or detrimental healthcare reforms. The June 2013 slogans are about dignity, absurdity, and the feeling of being ridiculed by those paid to represent you.

    Attempts to turn the protests into a clash of party ideologies have so far failed: the nationalist ATAKA party (a baffling coalition partner in a Socialist-led government) mobilised a few hundred of its supporters for a counter-protest. The mass demonstration was instantly re-routed to bypass the ATAKA headquarters, thus managing to avoid open confrontation.

    Another blow to the plan of the extreme right came when the public TV channel broadcast an undercover report on their counter-demo. Earlier that day, ATAKA had recruited “supporters” in local gyms, on the promise of a 30 leva (£13) fee and a supply of free pizza. Having enthusiastically shared the story online, economic conservatives, anarchists, LGBT and environmental activists have continued to gather (for free, their signs proudly proclaim) daily to picket the representatives of the status quo.

    The Bulgarian demonstrations seem increasingly likely to topple the new government, but it is becoming clearer than ever that the problems of the political establishment run to its very foundations. The protests cannot deliver the solution when there is need for radical change in the way politics is practiced. The small victory over the Peevski appointment, however, may serve to bring closer the social and political spheres which have been so profoundly divided ever since the end of single-party rule 24 years ago.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 26, 2013, 6:58 pm
  2. Thanks Dave!

    Posted by Remond Common | June 27, 2013, 7:39 pm

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