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Have Turkish Citizens Had Enough of Erdogan’s Taffy? (Viva Attaturk!)

Dave Emory’s entire life­time of work is avail­able on a flash drive that can be obtained here. (The flash drive includes the anti-fascist books avail­able on this site.)

COMMENT: Recent days have seen expanding popular protests in Turkey, touched off by the Erdogan government’s project to raze a popular urban park and replace it with a shopping mall and a replica of an Ottoman-era military barracks.

Turned back by heavy-handed tactics by the country’s Fetullah Gulen-dominated police establishment, the demonstrations appear to embody a broader popular dissatisfaction with Erdogan’s Islamist government

Far from the “moderate,” “democratic” institution it has been called by Western media sycophants, the Erdogan government is inextricably linked with the Muslim Brotherhood, an Islamic fascist organization allied with the Axis in World War II and nurtured by elements of Western intelligence in the postwar period. 

His regime and its ministers have more or less openly manifested a neo-Ottoman, irredentist agenda.

In past discussions, we have noted that the U.S. has been providing the military muscle for the institution of Islamist regimes in parts of the former Ottoman Empire and that Germany and the Underground Reich are the apparent beneficiaries of this political dynamic.

Turkish protesters rejecting Erdogan's taffy

Many of the protesters, as can be seen in the excerpted, linked stories and posts below, are fed up with Erdogan’s positioning himself as a neo-Sultan and his ruthless crushing of political and journalistic opposition. It has been widely trumpeted that the Erdogan government is an excellent model for the supposed emerging democracies in the Middle East following the “Arab Spring.”

In the massive, intense For The Record series about the “Muslim Brotherhood Spring,” as we call it, we noted that the upheavals were the product of a GOP/Underground Reich faction of U.S.intelligence executing a covert operation begun during the closing days of the second Bush administration,  and continued under Obama, whose political fortune would  fall victim to the fallout and blowback from that operation. Indeed, the Muslim Brotherhood has been ascendant in the affected countries since that series was produced. (That series is FTR #732 through FTR #739.)

Designed to bring “corporatism” to much of the Muslim world and aimed at peeling off much of the oil-rich Caucasus from Russia and resource-rich Xinjiang Province from China, that covert op enlists jihadists as proxy warriors. Ultimately, the U.S., the U.K. and Israel will fall victim to these Underground Reich proxies as well.

There are a number of important points to ponder in connection with the unrest in Turkey:

  • Maintaining a defiant tone, Erdogan characterized the confrontations as having been influenced by unnamed “foreign interests.” He did not specify who they might be. One wonders if this was a subtle reference to “Da Joos.”! (Erdogan’s Islamist/Muslim Brotherhood fellow traveler Mohamed Morsi also blamed popular unrest [in Egypt] on unnamed “foreign interests.”)
  • After returning to Turkey from abroad, Erdogan also blamed “bankers” for the unrest. This may well be a veiled reference to “Da Joos,” deriving momentum from financial markets’ lack of confidence in the sustainability of the Turkish real estate-driven economy.
  • Among the casualties in the rioting was Ahmet Sik, a journalist who has written critically of the Fetullah Gulen penetration of the Turkish police. He was wounded by a tear gas canister fired at close range by police officers.
  • One of the apparent sore-spots for many of the protesters is the reliance of the Erdogan government on real estate projects to drive the economy.  Some feel that this will lead to a real estate bubble, such as the one that collapsed the U.S. economy.
  • Within a few days of the beginning of the popular protests and uprisings, financial markets demonstrated a significant lack of confidence in the Turkish economy and real estate bubble.
  • Among the construction projects Erdogan has championed is a lavish mosque built in the United States.
  • Interestingly, and perhaps significantly, Youssef Nada of the Al-Taqwa complex is a construction magnate, with many of the Al-Taqwa-related enterprises engaged in that industry. One wonders how many of the Erdogan construction projects are related to the Nada complex of firms.
  • Turkey was among the countries in which Martin Bormann set up the corporate fronts that were repositories for the stolen liquid wealth of Europe and the foundation of Germany’s so-called “economic miracle.”
  • Turkey is a major business partner of Germany’s and the German-dominated EU. Corporate Germany is dominated by the Bormann capital network.
  • Erdogan’s visit to the American mosque his government has built was attended by key Muslim Brotherhood figures.
  • Erdogan’s government–perhaps in cooperation with the allegedly CIA-connected Fetullah Gulen organization–has allegedly been infiltrating a large number of Turkish nationals into Native American territories in the U.S. One wonders if they will be advancing the Underground Reich/UNPO agenda of fragmenting the U.S.
  • Erdogan was accompanied on the visit by a relative of one of the casualties in the Gaza Flotilla episode. The IHH, the organization behind the Gaza Flotilla, enjoyed heavy support from the Erdogan government.
  • The IHH is a jihadist organization. One of its founders is suspected of having funded Al-Qaeda.
  • Erdogan, himself, was mentored by Necmettin Erbakan and his AK Party is evolved from Erbakan’s Refah Party.
  • As can be seen below in the excerpt from Dollars for Terror, Erbakan was closely associated with the Al-Taqwa complex, its director Ahmed Huber and the Underground Reich.
  • Erdogan’s government enjoys the profound support of transnational corporate interests, derivative of what we have termed “the Turn to the Brotherhood.” The laissez-faire economic ideology of the Brotherhood has enamored them to the World Bank and is similar in nature to that of the powerful right-wing Christian group “The Family.”
  • Ultimately, the “turn to the Brotherhood” underlying Erdogan’s government will be to the benefit of The Underground Reich, as discussed in a previous post.

“Police Retreat as Protests Expand Through Turkey” by Tim Arango; The New York Times; 6/1/2013.

EXCERPT: Violent protests against the government of Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan engulfed Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city, on Saturday and spread to other cities, including the capital, Ankara, as tens of thousands of demonstrators took to the streets in a second day of civil unrest and faced the tear gas and water cannons of a harsh police crackdown. By late afternoon, the police withdrew from Istanbul’s central Taksim Square, allowing the demonstrators to gather unimpeded in the place that set off the protests last week with government plans to turn a park into a replica Ottoman-era army barracks and mall.

The departure of the police, who had been widely criticized for violent tactics on Friday, set off scenes of jubilation and destruction, as some drank and partied while others destroyed police vehicles and bulldozers. While the protest began over plans to destroy a park, for many demonstrators it had moved beyond that to become a broad rebuke to the 10-year leadership of Mr. Erdogan and his government, which they say has adopted authoritarian tactics.

Some saw the police pullback as a historic victory. “It’s the first time in Turkey’s democratic history that an unplanned, peaceful protest movement succeeded in changing the government’s approach and policy,” said Sinan Ulgen, the chairman of the Center for Economic and Foreign Policy Studies, a research group in Istanbul. “It gave for the first time a strong sense of empowerment to ordinary citizens to demonstrate and further their belief that if they act like they did the last few days they can influence events in Turkey.” Still, it was far from clear on Saturday whether they could capitalize on that success.

The Islamist-rooted government retains wide support among religious conservatives, and Mr. Erdogan insisted Saturday that the redevelopment of the square would continue as planned. By nightfall, as the crowds in Taksim Square grew rowdier, a sense of foreboding crept in as many worried that the police would return. In the Besiktas neighborhood, the police were still firing tear gas, and protesters were erecting barricades in the streets.

The Interior Ministry said it had arrested 939 people at demonstrations across the country, and that 79 people were wounded, a number that was probably low. After Friday’s protests, which were smaller and less violent than those on Saturday, a Turkish doctors’ group reported nearly 1,000 injuries.

The scenes carried the symbolic weight of specific grievances: people held beers in the air, a rebuke to the recently passed law banning alcohol in public spaces; young men smashed the windshields of the bulldozers that had begun razing Taksim Square; and a red flag bearing the face of modern Turkey’s secular founder, Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, was draped over a destroyed police vehicle. But despite the comparisons made in some quarters with the street chaos of Egypt’s revolution, no viable political opposition here seems capable of seizing the disenchantment of secular-minded Turks and molding it in to a cohesive movement. . . .

“Turkish Premier Blames Extremists for Protests as Two Are Killed” by Sebnem Arsu; The New York Times; 6/3/2013.

EXCERPT: . . . .“If we set aside those that joined upon their innocent motives and information they got from the media, there are also ones that attended an event organized by extremists,” Mr. Erdogan said in a speech. He suggested the possibility of foreign provocation, although he did not specify its origin.

“Our intelligence agency has their own investigation on that — there is no need to disclose them as this or that,” he said. . . .

“Erdogan Calls for End to Turkey Protest” by Elena Becatoros and Suzan Fraser [AP]; Yahoo News; 6/6/2013.

EXCERPT: . . . . In his last speech in Tunisia before flying to Istanbul, Erdogan had said that terrorist groups were involved in the protests, saying they had been identified.

In a twist, Erdogan implied that bankers were also part of a conspiracy that was fuelling the protests. He added that the flames of dissent had been fanned by other groups too. . . .

“Peaceful Protest Over Istanbul Park Turns Violent as Police Crack Down” by  Tim Arango and Ceylan Yeginsu; The New York Times; 5/31/2013.

EXCERPT: . . . . . Another referred to Mr. Erdogan and the growing number of shopping malls being built around the city. “Let all shopping malls crumble and let Tayyip get crushed by their rubble,” the banner read. In building new mosques and emphasizing Turkey’s Islamic past over its Byzantine and Roman legacies, Mr. Erdogan has been referred to as a latter-day Ottoman sultan, with little regard for seeking public input on the projects. On Wednesday, the government held a groundbreaking ceremony for a third bridge over the Bosporus that is being named for an Ottoman sultan.

“It’s all about superiority, and ruling over the people like sultans,” said one of the protesters, Seckin Barbaros, 26, a former journalist who is now unemployed. “When were we asked what we wanted? We have three times the amount of mosques as we do schools. Yet they are building new mosques. There are eight shopping malls in the vicinity of Taksim, yet they want to build another.” In a speech earlier in the week, Mr. Erdogan dismissed the protesters and said the destruction of park would go ahead, “no matter what they do.”

The anger in the streets is also a rebuke to the economic policies of the government, which have relied heavily on construction and new housing in Istanbul to power economic growth. Turkey has had a resilient economy that emerged relatively unscathed from the global financial crisis, eclipsing the performance of Europe and many other nations. But some analysts worry the government’s focus on construction projects could lead to a bubble much like the one in the United States that led to the economic collapse of 2008. Ms. Barbaros said, “What about the day when all these shopping malls will be empty like in Greece and then they will wish they never constructed them.” . . .

“Financial Fears Gain Credence as Unrest Shakes Turkey” by Landon Thomas, Jr.; The New York Times; 6/5/2013.

EXCERPT: It is not often that the rock-throwing street protester and the seasoned bond investor see eye to eye.

This curious happenstance — where both fear that the profusion of glass towers and shopping malls now overwhelming the classic Istanbul skyline is not only ugly but unsustainable — underlies the convulsive uprising in Taksim Square.

The once soaring Turkish stock market has fallen about 9 percent in the past week, interest rates are on the rise and, crucially, after a period of strength, the currency, the lira, has lost 8 percent in recent months and 1 percent just since the protests began.

For more than two years, a very small subset of investors and economists has warned that, as with other economic booms built on a mountain of debt — like the property spikes in Japan in the 1980s and more recently in the United States, Spain, Ireland and other European countries — the one in Turkey would reach a painful end.

Until recently, their warnings were ignored.

In contrast to a Europe stagnating throughout most of the past decade, Turkey has grown at a 5 percent annual rate while keeping its public finances in check.

In fact, with a budget deficit that is below 2 percent of gross domestic product and overall public-sector debt of less than half its economic output, Turkey challenges powerhouse Germany for best-in-class status when it comes to these critical benchmarks of broad economic health.

For Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan, the political crisis he is facing seems manageable precisely because of Turkey’s economic success, which has buoyed a pious entrepreneurial class that forms the core of his constituency. As the protest movement has unfurled, few analysts have suggested Mr. Erdogan’s hold on power is in jeopardy, arguing that he maintains the support of the religious masses that propelled him to power.

But that dynamic could change quickly should the economy falter, as a growing number of analysts now say is possible.

Hundreds of billions of dollars of short-term loans have been flowing into the country from investors in search of higher yielding assets, financing the very malls and skyscrapers that have so dismayed the small but growing coalition of secular intellectuals, left-of-center political activists and a smattering of the professional classes.

What worries financial experts is that this so-called hot money can leave the country just as quickly as it arrived, touching off a currency crisis and, eventually, a collapse in the property markets that could threaten the nation’s banks.

“This is a classic credit boom, with money being thrown at Turkey, especially the banks,” said Tim Lee, an independent economist at Pi Economics in Greenwich, Conn., who has warned for years of a Turkish financial bubble. “At some point, though, you reach a moment when the music stops.”

It is perhaps too soon to say if that moment has come, but the financial jitters that have followed the protests have been noticeable, especially with regard to the wobbly lira . . .

“Turkey Stakes Claim in Amer­ica With $100 Mil­lion Mega-Mosque” by Ryan Mauro; The Clarion Project; 5/21/2013.

ENTIRE TEXT: The gov­ern­ment of Turkey is build­ing a 15-acre, $100 mil­lion mega-mosque in Lan­ham, Mary­land. Turkey’s Prime Min­is­ter Erdo­gan vis­ited the site on May 15 as part of his offi­cial visit to the U.S.. The state of Mary­land was offi­cially rep­re­sented at the event by its Sec­re­tary of State John McDonough. The event was also attended by the lead­ers of two U.S. Mus­lim Broth­er­hood entities.

The mega-mosque is called the Turk­ish Amer­i­can Cul­ture and Civ­i­liza­tion Cen­ter and, accord­ing to the Mus­lim Link, it “will likely become the largest and most strik­ing exam­ples of Islamic archi­tec­ture in the west­ern hemi­sphere” when it is fin­ished in 2014. The Mus­lim Link explic­itly says it is “a project of the gov­ern­ment of Turkey.”

On May 15, Prime Min­is­ter Erdo­gan spoke to hun­dreds of peo­ple at the con­struc­tion site and said he’d come back for the open­ing cer­e­mony next year. He warned the audi­ence that there are groups pro­mot­ing “Islam­o­pho­bia,” brand­ing poten­tial crit­ics as para­noid big­ots. Erdo­gan recently said that “Islam­o­pho­bia” and Zion­ism are equiv­a­lent to fas­cism and anti-Semitism, say­ing they are a “crime against humanity.”

On this trip to the U.S., Erdo­gan brought the father of one of the Islamists killed while on a Turk­ish flotilla which was try­ing to break Israel’s weapons block­ade on Gaza. Gaza is con­trolled by Hamas, which is a des­ig­nated ter­ror­ist orga­ni­za­tion by the U.S. State Depart­ment. Erdo­gan report­edly wanted to him to meet Pres­i­dent Obama. (In the end, the father met with Sec­re­tary of State John Kerry.)

The lead­ers of two U.S. Mus­lim Broth­er­hood enti­ties in atten­dance included Naeem Baig, is the pres­i­dent of the Islamic Cir­cle of North Amer­ica (ICNA). A 1991 U.S. Mus­lim Broth­er­hood memo lists ICNA as one of “our orga­ni­za­tions and the orga­ni­za­tions of our friends.” The memo says its “work in Amer­ica is “a kind of grand jihad in elim­i­nat­ing and destroy­ing the West­ern civ­i­liza­tion from within.”

The memo even refers to meet­ings with ICNA where there was talk about a merger. ICNA is also linked to the Pak­istani Islamist group Jamaat-e-Islami and its con­fer­ences fea­ture rad­i­cal speak­ers. A for­mer ICNA pres­i­dent was recently indicted for hor­rific war crimes com­mit­ted dur­ing Bangladesh’s 1971 suc­ces­sion from Pak­istan – the tor­ture and mur­der or 18 polit­i­cal opponents.

The sec­ond offi­cial from a U.S. Mus­lim Broth­er­hood entity that attended the event was Mohamed Magid, pres­i­dent of the Islamic Soci­ety of North Amer­ica (ISNA). ISNA and sev­eral of its com­po­nents are listed as U.S. Mus­lim Broth­er­hood fronts in the same 1991 Broth­er­hood memo.

ISNA was also an unin­dicted co-conspirator in the Holy Land Foun­da­tion case, dubbed the largest Islamic terror-funding trial in the his­tory of the U.S. Fed­eral pros­e­cu­tors in the case also listed ISNA as a U.S. Mus­lim Broth­er­hood entity. The Turk­ish gov­ern­ment has been qui­etly spread­ing its influ­ence in the U.S., but Erdogan’s pub­lic invovle­ment in the build­ing of this cen­ter takes Turkey’s “out­reach” in Amer­ica out of the realm of the subtle.

The Clar­ion Project recently reported on the grow­ing ties between the Turk­ish gov­ern­ment and Native Amer­i­can tribes. With Con­gress’ help, thou­sands of Turk­ish con­trac­tors and their fam­i­lies may be flood­ing into America’s heart­land and set­tling in semi-autonomous zones of the Native Amer­i­cans, well out of the reach of Amer­i­can authorities.

The Clar­ion Project also reported on the Turk­ish Fethul­lah Gulen school net­work in Amer­ica, which is cur­rently under FBI inves­ti­ga­tion. The net­work is the largest char­ter school net­work in Amer­ica. It is the same net­work that has been a crit­i­cal com­po­nent in Turkey’s on-going trans­for­ma­tion from a sec­u­lar democ­racy into an Islamic state. Erdo­gan and his Islamist gov­ern­ment calls Hamas a “resis­tance” group, despite the fact that Hamas specif­i­cally tar­gets Israeli civil­ians with sui­cide bomb­ings and rocket attacks. Not sur­pris­ingly, Hamas leader Khaled Mashaal is a big admirer of Erdogan.

Since tak­ing office in 2003, Erdo­gan has been imple­ment­ing his Islamist agenda, slowly but steadily chang­ing Turkey from a sec­u­lar democ­racy to an Islamist state: Col­lege admis­sions have been changed to favor reli­gious stu­dents, the mil­i­tary has been gut­ted of its sec­u­lar gen­er­als (with one in five gen­er­als cur­rently in prison on dubi­ous charges) and women have been routed out of top gov­ern­ment jobs. Honor killings in Turkey increased 1,400 per­cent between 2002 and 2009. Per­se­cu­tion of artists and jour­nal­ists has become com­mon­place as oppo­nents are charged with “crimes” like “den­i­grat­ing Islam” and “den­i­grad­ing the state.”

Accord­ing to the Mus­lim Link, the new cen­ter will have five build­ings, includ­ing a mosque “con­structed using six­teenth cen­tury Ottoman archi­tec­ture that can hold 750 worshipers.” The Turk­ish Amer­i­can Cul­ture and Civ­i­liza­tion Cen­ter will be the largest Islamic site in the West­ern Hemi­sphere. The fact that it is being built by the gov­ern­ment of Turkey rep­re­sents the next step in Erdogan’s desire to increase the Islamist influ­ence in America.

“Turkish IHH President Investigated for Financing Al-Qaeda”; Global Muslim Brotherhood Daily Report; 6/17/2012.

EXCERPT:  Turkish media is reporting that the President of the Humanitarian Relief Foundation (İHH), sponsor of the June 2010 Gaza flotilla that was involved in a violent altercation with Israeli naval forces, is being investigated for allegedly financing al-Qaeda through his organization. According to the report:

. . . . Humanitarian Relief Foundation (İHH) President Bülent Yıldırım is being investigated for allegedly financing al-Qaeda through his organization, daily Habertürk has reported. The probe, led by an Istanbul specially authorized prosecutor, accuses Yıldırım of ‘providing financial aid to al-Qaeda via his foundation’ with absolute secrecy, reportedly without official numbering and identification. A Diyarbakır specially authorized prosecutor has also been leading a similar case into Yıldırım, Habertürk reported. Yıldırım was the İHH’s head during the 2010 Mavi Marmara flotilla incident . . . .

. . . There is strong evidence for Turkish governmental involvement in the Gaza flotilla incident, with Turkish government support channeled through the Turkish Muslim Brotherhood network. Since 2006, Turkey has become a new center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood. The IHH was not acting alone but rather was an integral part of a Turkish Muslim Brotherhood network.

The Gaza flotilla incident brought into sharp focus an even more significant long- term development: the growing relationship between the Erdogan government and the Global Muslim Brotherhood, which has given rise to some of the most notorious Islamist terrorist groups – from al-Qaeda to Hamas. Since 2006, Turkey has become a new center for the Global Muslim Brotherhood, while the Hamas regime in the Gaza Strip acted as the main axis for this activity. . . .

Mar­tin Bor­mann: Nazi in Exile; Paul Man­ning; Copy­right 1981 [HC]; Lyle Stu­art Inc.; ISBN 0–8184-0309–8; pp. 135–136.

EXCERPT: . . . .Seven hun­dred and fifty new cor­po­ra­tions were estab­lished in the last months of the war under the direc­tion of Reich­sleiter Bor­mann, using the tech­nique per­fected by Her­mann Schmitz [of I.G. Far­ben]. A national of each coun­try was the nom­i­nal head of each cor­po­rate struc­ture and the board was a mix of Ger­man admin­is­tra­tors and bank offi­cials, while the staffing at senior and mid­dle man­age­ment lev­els was com­prised of Ger­man sci­en­tists and tech­ni­cians. In the back­ground were the shad­owy own­ers of the cor­po­ra­tion, those Ger­mans who pos­sessed the bearer bonds as proof of stock own­er­ship. The estab­lish­ment of such com­pa­nies, usu­ally launched in indus­tries requir­ing high tech­ni­cal skills was wel­comed in Spain and Argentina, to give two exam­ples because those gov­ern­ments appre­ci­ated that Ger­man com­pa­nies would gen­er­ate jobs and imple­ment a more favor­able bal­ance of trade. Coun­try by coun­try, a break­down by U.S. trea­sury inves­ti­ga­tors of these new 750 Ger­man firms was as fol­lows: Por­tu­gal, 58; Spain, 112; Swe­den, 233; Switzer­land, 214; Turkey, 35; Argentina, 98. . . .

“The Turk­ish Model”; german-foreign-policy.com; 2/18/2011.

EXCERPT. . . . The focus is on two par­tic­u­lar aspects of Turk­ish pol­icy. The first is that over the past few years, polit­i­cal Islam in Turkey has proven to be very coop­er­a­tive with the EU. This is due to the eco­nomic rise of the con­ser­v­a­tive sec­tors of the Ana­to­lian hin­ter­land, which is orga­nized within the Adelet ve Kalk­inma Par­tisi (AKP), the party of Prime Min­is­ter Recep Tayyip Erdo­gan and rul­ing party in Ankara since 2002. The AKP has a clearly Islamic ori­en­ta­tion. The Ana­to­lian enter­prises form­ing the back­bone of the party have close eco­nomic ties in EU coun­tries.

It is on this basis that the AKP has estab­lished inten­sive ties to West­ern Europe, and incor­po­rated into its brand of polit­i­cal Islam a reori­en­ta­tion favor­able to the EU. (german-foreign-policy.com reported.[2]) The party has since stood as a model for the pos­si­bil­ity of Islamism hav­ing a pro-western char­ac­ter. In fact, over the past few years, sev­eral North African Islamic forces — includ­ing sec­tors of the influ­en­tial Egypt­ian Mus­lim Broth­er­hood — have been ori­ent­ing them­selves on the AKP. Accord­ing to a recent study, co-financed by the SPD-affiliated Friedrich Ebert Foun­da­tion, nearly two-thirds of the pop­u­la­tions in seven Arab nations, includ­ing Egypt, would be in favor of their coun­tries’ adopt­ing the Turk­ish model.[3] A pro-western ori­en­ta­tion of the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood, implicit in such a model, would be appre­ci­ated in west­ern capitals. . . .

“U.S. Trails Va. Mus­lim Money, Ties” by Dou­glas Farah and John Mintz; Wash­ing­ton Post; 10/7/2002.

EXCERPT. . . . A wealthy con­struc­tion mag­nate, Nada con­trols firms across Europe and the Arab world. Nasred­din, of Ethiopian descent, oper­ates a busi­ness empire inter­twined with Nada’s out of Milan. Founded in Egypt, the Mus­lim Broth­er­hood has over the decades helped stir a revival in Islamic pride and mil­i­tant oppo­si­tion to sec­u­lar Arab regimes. Gov­ern­ments in Egypt, Syria and Iraq have harshly cracked down on the group since the 1950s. The orga­ni­za­tion, viewed as heroic in much of the Arab world, has recently mod­er­ated some of its rad­i­cal stances. . . .

“Turkey Offers Sup­port for Con­tro­ver­sial Islamic Group”; Deutsche Welle; 4/23/2003.

EXCERPT: . . . . Some observers say the attempt to reform its pub­lic image could be at least partly linked to the rise of Turk­ish Prime Min­is­ter Tayyip Erdo­gan and his AK party. Com­ing to power in a land­slide vic­tory last year, Erdo­gan styles his party as a mod­ern con­ser­v­a­tive group based on Mus­lim val­ues. He has dis­tanced him­self from for­mer men­tor Necmet­tin Erbakan, who founded the Islamic-influenced Wel­fare Party. . . .

Dol­lars for Ter­ror: The United States and Islam; by Richard Labeviere; Copy­right 2000 [SC]; Algora Pub­lish­ing; ISBN 1–892941-06–6; p. 142.

EXCERPT: . . . . A sec­ond pho­to­graph, in which Hitler is talk­ing with Himm­ler, hangs next to those of Necmet­tin Erbakan and Jean-Marie Le Pen [leader of the fas­cist National Front]. Erbakan, head of the Turk­ish Islamist party, Refah, turned to Achmed Huber for an intro­duc­tion to the chief of the French party of the far right. Exit­ing from the meet­ing (which took place in Sep­tem­ber 1995). Huber’s two friends sup­pos­edly stated that they ‘share the same view of the world’ and expressed ‘their com­mon desire to work together to remove the last racist obsta­cles that still pre­vent the union of the Islamist move­ment with the national right of Europe.’

Lastly, above the desk is dis­played a poster of the imam Khome­ini; the meet­ing ‘changed my life,’ Huber says, with stars in his eyes. For years, after the Fed­eral Palace in Bern, Ahmed Huber pub­lished a Euro­pean press review for the Iran­ian lead­ers, then for the Turk­ish Refah. Since the for­mer lacked finan­cial means, Huber chose to put his efforts to the ser­vice of the lat­ter. An out­post of the Turk­ish Mus­lim Broth­ers, Refah thus became Huber’s prin­ci­pal employer; and it was through the inter­me­di­ary of the Turk­ish Islamist party that this for­mer par­lia­men­tary cor­re­spon­dent became a share­holder in the bank Al Taqwa. . . .

“A Moscow Show Trial on the Bosporus” by Dani Radrik; “Conscience of a Liberal” by Paul Krugman [The New York Times]; 3/12/2012.

EXCERPT: In what is probably the country’s most important court case in at least five decades, hundreds of Turkish military officers are in jail and on trial for allegedly having plotted to overthrow the then newly-elected Justice and Development Party back in 2003. The case also happens to be one of the most absurd ever prosecuted in an apparent democracy. The evidence against the defendants is such an obvious forgery that even a child would recognize it as such. Imagine, if you can, something that is a cross between the Moscow show trials and the Salem witchcraft hysteria, and you will not be too far off.

The government’s case rests on a set of documents (mostly Word files) that describe in gory detail preparations for the coup (codenamed Sledgehammer), including false-flag operations to set the stage for the takeover and a list of cabinet members to be appointed. These are unsigned digital documents on electronic media (CDs, a detached hard drive, a flash drive) that have never been traced to actual military computers or otherwise authenticated. The military has vehemently denied that such plans ever existed.

Most tellingly, a torrent of evidence has come out since the documents first emerged that points to their fraudulent nature. The documents contain hundreds of anachronisms – names of NGOs, military installations, or firms that did not yet exist – that make clear beyond any reasonable doubt that they were produced years later and backdated to implicate the officers on trial. Some of the defendants have shown that they were outside the country at the time they are alleged to have prepared these documents or attended planning meetings.

An American forensic specialist has determined that the “hand writing” on the CDs was actually produced by mechanically replicating individual letters from the notebooks of one of the defendants. Deviations from military formatting suggest the documents were prepared by individuals not fully familiar with the army’s style requirements. As long-time Turkey analyst Gareth Jenkins put it to the New Yorker: “It’s absolutely clear that these documents have been forged.” . . . .

. . . . The Turkish military has a history of political intervention and has often clashed with the Islamists. So the allegations have been a godsend for Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, who has exploited the trial to gain control over military promotions and to break the army’s political power.

But the real moving force behind this and a number of other similar trials is the Gülen movement, a key ally of the Erdoğan government made up of the followers of the Pennsylvania-based Turkish Muslim preacher Fethullah Gülen. Gülenists have a long track record of framing their perceived opponents and engaging in judicial dirty tricks. Their control of key positions in the national police and judiciary enables them to mount targeted operations disguised as legal investigations. Prosecutors scrutinizing them, whistleblowers revealing their activities, critical journalists, and even businessmen have been among their victims, in addition to military officers. As Ahmet Şık, a journalist who wrote an expose about the movement and then found himself facing preposterous charges of helping terrorists even before the book was published, exclaimed on his way to jail: “he who touches [them] burns.”

The police and prosecutors who have staged the coup plot trial are known Gülen sympathizers. And Gülenist media have worked overtime to shape public opinion, whipping up hysteria against the defendants and producing a steady stream of disinformation about the case. The occasional judge who has ruled in favor of the officers and commentators pointing to problems with the prosecutors’ evidence (including me) have become targets of Gülenist defamation. . . .

Erdo­gan Over the Edge” by Claire Berlinski; City Journal; 6/3/2013.

EXCERPT: . . . .Nor was it likely a coincidence that they fired a tear-gas canister “at close range” at the head of journalist Ahmet Şık, best known for writing about the infiltration and corruption of Turkey’s police forces by the followers of the Turkish imam Fethullah Gülen. For this, Şık was jailed as a “coup-plotter.” This time, he wound up in the hospital, though he is expected to recover. . . .

Discussion

6 comments for “Have Turkish Citizens Had Enough of Erdogan’s Taffy? (Viva Attaturk!)”

  1. Per
    http://www.city-journal.org/2013/eon0603cb.html

    Erdogan Over the Edge
    by Claire Berlinski

    Police fired a tear gas canister “at close range” at the head of journalist Ahmet Sik, best known for writing about the infiltration and corruption of Turkey’s police forces by the followers of the Turkish imam Fethullah Gülen. For this, Sik was jailed as a “coup-plotter.” This time, he wound up in the hospital, though he is expected to recover.

    Posted by Vanfield | June 5, 2013, 10:24 pm
  2. Well let’s hope the anti-fascist sentiments expressed by the protester in this article are really indicative of the mindset of the larger movement because, if so, that’s a good sign. One of the biggest risks inherent in any political movement dedicated to uprooting well-established autocrat is the “what comes next?” moment that immediately follows the fall of the regime. The Arab Spring is a recent reminder that fascism – in the form of the Muslim Brotherhood – might be “what comes next”. Fascism takes a lot of forms so having an explicitly anti-fascist component to the list of demands is both a positive sign and really useful:

    BBC
    Ankara protesters clash with Turkish police
    8 June 2013 Last updated at 17:43 ET

    Police in the Turkish capital Ankara have used tear gas and water cannon on demonstrators as anti-government protests get into a second week.

    About 5,000 people had gathered in Kizilay Square in the city centre. Protesters and police also clashed in Istanbul, Turkey’s largest city.

    Turkey has seen a week of civil unrest sparked by a police crackdown on a local protest over an Istanbul park.

    Earlier, Prime Minister Recep Tayyip Erdogan ruled out early elections.

    “You don’t decide on early elections because people are marching on the streets,” he said.

    Local and presidential elections would take place next year as scheduled, said an official from Mr Erdogan’s governing AKP (Justice and Development Party). A general election is due in 2015.

    The AKP has been in power in Turkey since 2002. Protesters say the government is becoming increasingly authoritarian and imposing Islamist values on a secular state.

    In Istanbul, supporters of three rival football clubs – Fenerbahce, Galatasaray and Besiktas – set aside their differences to march together to Taksim Square, the epicentre of the protests.

    “We’re here against fascism, all together, shoulder to shoulder. Actually we should be thanking Tayyip Erdogan for bringing us together. He united the entire country [against him],” an unnamed Fenerbahce supporter told the Associated Press.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 8, 2013, 7:41 pm
  3. Just can’t get enough of that MB twostep

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 11, 2013, 1:22 pm
  4. Tayyip keeps it classy:

    Turkey could deploy army to quell protests

    By Jonathon Burch and Daren Butler

    ANKARA/ISTANBUL | Mon Jun 17, 2013 12:49pm EDT

    (Reuters) – Turkey’s deputy prime minister said on Monday the armed forces could be called up if needed to help quell popular protests that have swept Turkish cities in the last two weeks, the first time the possibility of a military role has been raised.

    Bulent Arinc made the remarks in Ankara, where 1,000 striking trade union workers faced off briefly against police backed by several water cannon, before police retreated and the crowd left.

    In Istanbul, the cradle of protests that have presented Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan with the greatest public challenge to his 10-year leadership, several hundred union members also marched in sympathy with anti-government demonstrations.

    They were prevented from entering Taksim Square, the focal point of the unrest, but after workers had moved off, between 200 and 300 mainly young protesters, some of them throwing stones from slingshots, fought with police.

    The violence was minor compared with the weekend, which saw some of the fiercest clashes so far when police fired teargas and water cannon to clear thousands of people from the square.

    “Our police, our security forces are doing their jobs. If it’s not enough, then the gendarmes will do their jobs. If that’s not enough … we could even use elements of the Turkish Armed Forces,” Arinc told Turkey’s state-run TRT television.

    Any use of the army would be a dramatic step in Turkey, where Erdogan has pushed through democratic reforms including taming a military that toppled four governments in four decades.

    Erdogan sought to seize back the initiative over the weekend by holding huge rallies in Istanbul and Ankara. Hundreds of thousands turned up to see a leader who has won three successive elections, and whom they considered unfairly under siege.

    The blunt-talking 59-year-old said the rallies were to kick off campaigning for local elections next year and not related to the unrest, but they were widely seen as a show of strength.

    A defiant Erdogan told a sea of flag-waving supporters in Istanbul on Sunday that the disturbances had been manipulated by “terrorists” and dismissed suggestions that he was behaving like a dictator, a constant refrain from protesters on the streets.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 17, 2013, 1:41 pm
  5. @Pterrafractyl–

    Bear in mind, again, that this is the “democratic role model” that the “Arab Spring” was meant to emulate.

    Looks like Morsi is indeed, following through on the course.

    Ain’t democracy grand?

    Best,

    Dave

    Posted by Dave Emory | June 17, 2013, 3:25 pm
  6. Given that Erdogan sees himself as a ‘champion of democratic reform’, it’s worth reminding ourselves that not all reforms are helpful:

    Erdogan defends riot police tactics in Turkey protests

    By Daren Butler

    ISTANBUL | Sun Jun 23, 2013 3:08pm EDT

    (Reuters) – Turkish Prime Minister Tayyip Erdogan piled ridicule on activists behind weeks of protests against his government during a rally on Sunday and defended riot police who fired water cannon at crowds in Istanbul a day earlier.

    Looking out of over a sea of Turkish flags waved by his AK Party faithful in the eastern city of Erzurum, Erdogan praised his supporters and the general public for opposing what he called a plot against his country.

    “The people saw this game from the start and frustrated it. They (the protesters) thought the people would say nothing. They said we will burn and destroy and do what we want but the people will do nothing,” he said.

    Sunday’s mass rally was the fifth which Erdogan has called since protests began in Istanbul in an unprecedented challenge to his 10-year rule.

    The unrest was triggered when police used force against campaigners opposed to plans to develop Istanbul’s Gezi Park, but they quickly turned into a broader show of anger at what critics call Erdogan’s growing authoritarianism.

    The protests have underlined divisions in Turkish society between religious conservatives who form the bedrock of Erdogan’s support and more liberal Turks who have swelled the ranks of demonstrators.

    He ending his speech by throwing red carnations to the roughly 15,000-strong crowd in the AK Party stronghold.

    MARCH ELECTIONS

    The AK Party rallies are focused on boosting party support ahead of municipal elections scheduled for next March and Erdogan said voters would then give their verdict on the weeks of unrest.

    “Those who came out using the excuse of Gezi at Taksim Square will get their answer at the ballot box,” he said.

    Erdogan, who won a third consecutive election in 2011 with 50 percent support, sees himself as a champion of democratic reform, and has been riled by the protests and by international condemnation coming mainly from key trade partner Germany.

    Saturday’s clashes occurred after thousands of protesters gathered in Istanbul’s Taksim Square, which adjoins Gezi Park, to remember the three demonstrators and one police officer who died in earlier protests. Many refused to leave after calls from the police for them to disperse.

    Erdogan defended the tactics of the police, who also used fired teargas canisters to scatter protesters in nearby streets in cat-and-mouse clashes.

    “Yesterday they wanted to occupy the square again. The police were patient up to a certain point,” he said. “When they didn’t leave the police was forced to get them out.”

    There were also clashes on Saturday night in the capital Ankara, where riot police fired water cannon and teargas to break up hundreds of protesters.

    Throwing red carnations after you tear gas and water-cannon the red carnation-wielding protesters. Tayyip keeps it classy.

    Posted by Pterrafractyl | June 23, 2013, 11:14 pm

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