Yesterday’s history of basest villainy


Yıldıray Oğur


The Turkish original of this article was published as Alçaklığın dünkü tarihi on 11th October 2015.



Are you looking for any usual suspects that might be behind this most monstrous massacre in Republican history?


It was only two years ago that two vehicles loaded with explosives were detonated in the city center of Reyhanlı, killing 55 people. Those accused are currently on trial. The prosecution has obtained dozens of pages of tape transcriptions, intelligence reports and testimonies to the effect that the orders were given by Anas Asaliah, code-named Abu Firas, of the Syrian Intelligence. 


And if that is not enough, there is further evidence of blatant neglect, despite all warnings, on the part of other procurators and policemen belonging to the Congregation vis-à-vis an attack that began to serve notice of its imminence as far back as seven months earlier.  


Syria is openly hostile to Turkey, and the whole world knows just what the Muhaberat is and has been capable of.


And if that too is not enough, there is the PKK that for the last forty years has used its guns, explosives, and human bombs to undertake every sort of action imaginable, including raiding Kurdish villages, ruthlessly executing its own militants, and just recently has transformed Kurdish towns and cities, through ditches, minefields and rocket launchers, into veritable battlefields. 


This is not the PKK that is said to be something like a scouts organization, or to be devoutly pursuing peace. It is the PKK that has declared a new “people’s revolutionary war,” whose rockets have been killing little girls sitting on their living room sofas, whose mines laid against passing military vehicles keep tearing little boys to shreds, who keeps murdering people in front of their 3 year-old daughters or their wives waving from the balcony or their children sitting at the dinner table. The terrorist organization that we are all too familiar with, and which has no concern other than remaining a terrorist organization.


Just recently, this how the HPG’s chief commander Murat Karayılan , in a 28th September interview published in Özgür Gündem (of “the free press cannot be silenced” fame), threatened Turkey:


“And oh, if tomorrow they [the Turkish state] should start perpetrating further urban massacres, then our Immortals Battalion will also get going in the metropolises.”  


This is an armed organization that terminated the previous de facto ceasefire through the Suruç massacre. A day after it has killed a policeman in the company of his pregnant wife and 3 year-old daughter, a day before the new ceasefire that it has, rather curiously, announced for Sunday [today], yet another massacre takes place in Turkey’s capital. What “clean sheet” is it that enables them to be immediately excluded from the list of usual suspects?


For once, let’s put aside the various minor leftist groups that are armed, all of which have their own battalions of immortals and self-sacrificing volunteers. Such as the DHKP-C that has had its own run-ins with the PKK, or Mihraç Ural who is in the service of Bashar al-Assad who is trying to take revenge by turning Turkey into Syria, or the MLKP that is a “solution partner” of the PKK… 


But then, what about IS, whom the PKK has been fighting for months under our noses? Where on the list of usual suspects is the world’s most ruthless terrorist organization that actually specializes in such dual bombings, and which possesses many such volunteers capable of blowing themselves up — how can almost everybody just forget about it?


Not only the PKK but Erdoğan and the AKP are also on the IS list of enemies. In the second issue of their Turkish periodical Konstantiniyye, this is what they had written:


“This atheist gang [i.e. the PKK] fed and kept by Erdoğan is constantly accusing the devil-serving Erdoğan and his government of supporting the Islamic State, simply because they are themselves asking for its support and assistance.”


The third issue of the same periodical, which has just appeared, carries an explicit call and threat on its front page: “The religious propriety and virtue of suicidal attacks.”


Neither can they be dismissed as empty bluffs. They were actually carried out at the HDP’s Diyarbakır rally and then at Suruç. The culprits were eventually identified by name. The police have long been searching for the older brother of the IS bomber at Suruç.


But somehow, nobody suspects a terrorist organization that is actually carrying out similar massacres in Syrian cities or in Baghdad on a daily basis, and is quite capable of doing so in Paris, Morocco, or Thailand. 


No, no; none of the above could have carried out this horrible massacre. In a country where all these armed terrorist organizations with long criminal records (including suicide missions) maintain a presence, the prime suspect has to be none of these.


Instead, it is the civilian government that has been running the country for the last thirteen years, and the first president to be elected by popular vote, that must have directed these bombs and bombers into the heart of the capital city on a Saturday only twenty days before the elections, at a time and place where they or their families could also have been passing by, so as to end up killing nearly one hundred people.  


After this sort of massacre, it is quite normal for a ruling party and government to be subjected to criticism, for any possible security or intelligence weaknesses to be questioned, or for officials to be asked to resign.


But some people can no longer be satisfied with all this. They directly extend their fingers to point to “the murderers.” This what they do just five minutes after the explosions, when the police had not even begun their crime scene investigation, in utter brazen shamelessness.


Tweets sent by a Gülen Congregation troll, or some menacing remarks made at a mafioso rally by a mafioso type (regardless of whether he might have the means to carry out such an attack, or the suicidal volunteers under his command ready to detonate themselves for his sake), or simply a passing whim are considered sufficient to engage in such lying and cheating, such intolerable baseness, such political scavenging and grave-robbing.   


What they are doing is tantamount to an all-out attack on the country that we cohabit, our ordinary daily lives, our sanity, our democracy. 


Hence, it becomes necessary to begin citing them name by name.


Selahattin Demirtaş. You are the chairman of a party that has got 13 percent of the popular vote as the political wing of an armed organization. When confronted by a terrorist attack, you should be feeling not so cocky but perhaps a degree of shame. 


Especially when armed gangs that only a year ago responded to your call by lynching young boys are still up and about in towns and cities. With all the responsibility of that 13 percent vote resting on your shoulders, and with enough power and influence at your disposal to start a civil war, what information, what intelligence, and what right do you have to say: “You are murderers! You have blood on your hands; you have blood splashed on your face, your mouth, your fingernails, all over you. You have been exposed as the greatest terror supporters of all”?


Especially given how, after attributing the Diyarbakır rally and Suruç massacres to “the Palace Gladio,” you have fallen flat on your face.


As the leader of the political wing of an armed organization that has killed more than a hundred persons over two months, aren’t you ashamed of such political scavenging as can turn the people against each other? 


Hasan Cemal. You are 71 years old. Half of your life has been devoted to writing books apologizing for the mistakes that you committed over the first half. As a top editor in the murky media of the 80s and 90s, you have been an accomplice to various dark deeds. Shouldn’t this record be reason enough to be a little more prudent, to keep your cool, to follow one step behind? In contrast, what information, what moral right, what journalistic seniority can you rely on to write, only an hour after a major massacre, an article pointing to Erdoğan as the perpetrator on the way to asking for people to vote for the HDP on 1st November? What for? In order to write more books of guilt and shame asking for forgiveness?


Can Dündar. You have posted a tweet saying: “Fuat Avni wrote this three weeks ago on 19th September; Yezid spoke with Fidan on Tuesday; they are going to exacerbate terrorist acts. They are planning to escalate violence and clashes on the eve of [election] rallies.”


An hour after the attack on the Diyarbakır rally and again an hour after the Suruç massacre, you had posted similar tweets to accuse the AKP. The culprit turned out to be IS.


Now, what information and what journalistic ethics are you bringing to bear on the present question when you jump from a media troll’s [Fuat Avni] tweet to pointing to the government as having perpetrated this sort of massacre? With the same feelings of irresponsibility and revanchism that you displayed when you tweeted about “TIRs headed for IS” although there was no mention whatsoever of IS in your news coverage of the MIT TIRs? What you are doing is not journalism but making yourself useful as a provocateur. Only for your own benefit, I hope.


Ahmet Şık. For having instantaneously manifested his great journalistic skills by tweeting: “It is an insufficient definition to call the Ankara massacre an act of terror. What is correct is to call it state terror. The names and addresses of both the murderers and their defenders are public knowledge.” 


Fehim Taştekin. For tweeting: “Those people covered their bloody corpses with peace placards. What are you going to cover your bloody hands with?” Having conveniently forgotten that he has been furthering his journalistic career by absolving Bashar al-Assad of his bloody massacres. 


Faruk Bildirici. For going on the air to announce that “This account will be settled on 1st November” — with his name preceded by the title “Ombudsman”; what a bad joke!


Celal Başlangıç. If the commanders on Mount Kandil (where no cigarette butts are dropped on the ground, so ecologically minded are they) had any planes, he would always be occupying the chair next to them. Although it is absolutely clear that the Diyarbakır attack eroded the AKP vote while benefiting the HDP, he is still capable of asking, in all illogic, “how many more bombs need to be detonated, how many more cities have to assaulted with tanks and artillery, how many more people have to be killed in order to gain 550 native and national MPs.”


Yıldırım Türker. For rehashing the story of a minor Mafioso rally the previous day in order to try and trick his readers into believing that “Sedat Peker had promised his chief to deliver rivers of blood.”


You are not just betraying your profession. Through such open and blatant lying, you are also attacking and trying to destroy this country’s culture of coexistence.


And of course, we are unable to enumerate those others who have entrusted their mental facilities to a hodja who believes that he is a “messiah,” or who are so steeped in their political hatreds as to turn a blind eye to the truth. 


Or perhaps it is we who have become much too naïve; perhaps you are actually doing all this lying, cheating, scavenging and grave-robbing not out of a blind hatred but consciously and deliberately.


Perhaps these are nothing but preliminary warmup exercises, after which the real bosses will appear on the stage to cause even Hülya Avşar to call for “somebody to please come and save us.” 


This article has been penned to make sure that what you did, said and wrote just hours or minutes after the biggest massacre in Republican history should not be erased and forgotten.


So that your raving, ravenous hatred may forever be inscribed in memory.  


So that if, through your efforts, “somebody” does appear to save us, those who later seek to discover why this happened can locate the culprits fairly easily.