Thursday, May 12, 2016

Erdegan's Jihad Mocked

"The conquest is Hijrah [expansion of Islam through emigration, following the example of Muhammad, the founder of Islam, and his followers from Mecca to Medina]. The conquest is Mecca. It is to cleanse the Kaaba, the house of Allah on earth, of all the icons. The conquest is Jerusalem. It is when the prophet Omar stamped the seal of Islam on Al-Aqsa Mosque, our first Qibla [the direction to face when a Muslim prays during the five times daily prayers] while respecting all faiths including [those of] Christians and Jews."
"The conquest is Al-Andalus [Muslim Spain]. It is to build the most beautiful architecture, literature and culture of the world such as in Córdoba and Granada.
"The conquest is Samarkand [a city in present-day Uzbekistan and once a capital of the ancient Sogdian civilization whose main religion was Zoroastrianism.]"
"The conquest is Bukhara [also in present-day Uzbekistan. It was a diverse city with Zoroastrian, Buddhist, Jewish and Nestorian Christian communities]. It is to establish one of the greatest civilizations of history in the steppes of Central Asia."
"The conquest is Salah al-Din al-Ayubbi [Saladin, who in 1187 invaded Jerusalem]. It is to hoist the flag of Islam in Jerusalem again."
"The conquest is Alp Arslan [the second Sultan of the medieval Muslim Seljuk Empire, who conquered Anatolia]."
"The conquest is to open the doors of Anatolia up to Vienna for this blessed nation. The conquest is Osman Ghazi [the first Ottoman Sultan]. It is to make the sycamore [the Ottoman Empire] meet with the ground that would cover three continents and seven climates through the enlightenment inspired by Sheikh Edebali who said, 'Make the human live so that the state can live'."
"The conquest is preparation. The conquest is when the Sultan Murad II abdicated the throne to his 12-year-old son, Mehmed II. And of course, the conquest is the Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror. It is, at age 21, to embrace Istanbul, the most favorite city of the world, after destroying the millennial Byzantium."
"Mehmed the Conqueror conquered Istanbul in 1453. But the conquests always continued before and after that. They continued with Sultan Selim I the Grim, Sultan Suleiman the Lawgiver, Sultan Murad IV, and Sultan Abdul Hamid II."
"The conquest is to have the courage, tenacity and sagacity to defy the entire world even at the hardest times."
"The conquest is 1994 [when Erdogan was elected mayor of Istanbul]. It is to serve Istanbul and the legacy of the Sultan Mehmed the Conqueror. The conquest is to make Turkey stand up on its feet again."                                          Turkish President-for-Life Sultan Recep Tayyip Erdogan
"Be it resolved that it is the conviction of the International Association of Genocide Scholars that the Ottoman campaign against Christian minorities of the Empire between 1914 and 1923 constituted a genocide against Armenians, Assyrians, and Pontian and Anatolian Greeks."
International Association of Genocide Scholars (IAGS)
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a meeting in Istanbul, Turkey, May 8, 2016. Long known to be sensitive to humor when he is the target, Erdogan challenged numerous satirists and comedians on the limits of free speech.
Turkey's President Recep Tayyip Erdogan speaks during a meeting in Istanbul, Turkey, May 8, 2016.

In Istanbul on May 30, 2015, in a public meeting celebrating the 562nd anniversary of the fall of Constantinople, Turkey's President, Recep Tayyip Erdogan, appeared to portray himself as an Ottoman sultan quite removed from his position as the leader of a NATO member nation. In his speech he gave praise to "hoisting the flag of Islam in Jerusalem again" and "stamping the seal of Islam on Al-Aqsa Mosque." If some media outlets are to be believed, two million people attended the event and cheered him on.

The most recent European Union report on Turkey gives short shrift to Erdogan's aspirations on joining the EU by the simple expedient of promising to be a bulwark against the unfettered flooding of Europe by Syrian refugees and haven seekers from Islamist regimes as disparate as Eritrea, Libya, Pakistan, Afghanistan and the Palestinian Territories among other misbegotten places where Islam rules and Muslims suffer under that rule. The report, once again, called Turkey out on its abysmal human rights record.

The pro-government Turkish newspaper Yeni Akit published Mr. Erdogan's response to that European Union report, on April 19, 2016:
"The EU needs Turkey."
"That they presented such a report to us at a time when our relations with the European Union are going positively in many fields, such as immigrants, opening some chapters and visa liberalization, is simply a provocative approach, a provocative act. I guess Europeans will see that."
"They have not been able to see that since 1963. But I do not know what will happen from now on. The EU needs Turkey more than Turkey needs the EU. Let everyone know it like that. There is no need to go to further places to understand that. It is enough to look at the latest developments."
"The report has a crippled perspective on the issues of Cyprus and the Aegean Sea, the independence of judiciary, and the freedom of expression, press and assembly. These people [EU officials] do what their nature (disposition) requires them to. [In the report], there is also the part about the 1915 events which is utterly farcical."

Turkey unequivocally denies at every opportunity, and bristles when other heads of nations declare their support for the Armenian version of Turkey's brutality against them in what is known as the Armenian genocide. Turkey's invasion of Cyprus to contest Greece for the island, which resulted in horrendous bloodshed and a Turkish separation of the island, is blandly considered by Mr. Erdogan nothing unusual, simply Turkey defending its rights.

It's clear enough that Turkey will continue to extract all it can from the European Union, not only an expedited membership in exchange for holding back the tide of Syrian refugees which has already cost the EU billions in bribery funding of the irascible Erdogan whose incendiary flash-point is never far from surfacing, to visa-free Turkish entry to Europe at any time. Under his reign which now promises to be forever once he succeeds in altering the nation's constitution to suit his whim as Sultan, free speech has been stifled.

Law suits brought against hundreds of people for charges of defamation of Turkey or, heaven forfend! of its ruler, have stifled journalists by imprisoning them on trumped-up charges. Now, the man has been bullying Europe to crack down on satirists who find in his persona more than ample caricature material, to still their voices, as well. In Germany, though Chancellor Angela Merkel agreed to his demand that a German law barring insults to foreign leaders be upheld, the courts have refused.

German late-night television comic Jan Boehmermann, had read a poem, a rather rude one he had written showcasing Mr. Erdogan, during a show.  The poem mocked Erdogan, containing references to sodomy and child pornography. It takes much, much less than that to infuriate Erdogan, and infuriate him it did. A top media executive who defended that satirical poem was to become another target in Erdogan's arsenal to punish those who mock his dignity and his elevated position.

"The defendant has a right to free expression of opinion", the court decided, rejecting Erdogan's play for a preliminary injunction, to lead toward a defamation lawsuit against Axel Springer publishing house CEO Mathias Doepfner.  Who had injudiciously published a letter in Die Welt newspaper in April, to state that he "wholeheartedly" endorsed the poem that caused him to "laugh[ed] out loud", on hearing it.

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