Hrant Dink’s funeral – where was Erdogan?

January 26, 2007 at 10:15 pm (Uncategorized)

Once again slightly belatedly, I was planning to write a post about the pathetic display from senior members of the Turkish government, who “did a Gordon” by conveniently disappearing from view on the day of assassinated Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink’s funeral. But unsurprisingly it seems that Mehmet Ali Birand’s beaten me to it, with this article published on Wednesday by the Turkish Daily News. I’d strongly recommend the article, which lacerates the leaders of the ruling, nominally Islamist Adalet ve Kalkinma Partisi (Justice and Development Party), and the leaders of the other mainstream parties, for their failure to stand up to the ultra-nationalist sentiment that is creeping over Turkey and benefitting the far right. That far right is represented by the Milliyetci Hareket Partisi (Nationalist Movement Party), who are the heirs of the fascist Grey Wolf movement, and who are likely to form the next government in Turkey. Over to you, Mr Birand:

“It was a great opportunity. Remember those slogans they keep repeating about our unity and brotherhood? Those about being against armed groups and the importance of democracy and freedom of expression. Do you remember those politicians who constantly criticized the groups that raid exhibitions, courtrooms and attack people in the name of ‘patriotism?’ These people are the ones who failed the test. Our leaders just failed.”

I couldn’t have put it better myself.

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