Saturday, 15 June 2013

Erdogan's Strategy: Lies, Diffamation, Distraction

Today PM ERdogan and the AK Party have assembled their supporters in Ankara and once again Erdogan has gave a long speech. Once again he repeated the same lies he has been repeating for days and weeks without having proof for even one of his claims. Repeatedly he assures the people that they have the material to prove everything and everyone who committed the things he claims to have been committed will he held accountable. Regarding his claim that some demonstrators had entered a mosque with shoes and drank alcohol there he wanted to present his proof by friday (yesterday), yet no such proof has been presented. On the contrary there is a video showing how injured people are treated in the Dolmabahce Mosque, which has been confirmed by the Imam who opened his doors for the injured. In fact there ares videos of the incident like this one that show some of the people walking around with shoes - understandable in a case emergency (and as one can see some of the people are bleeding and are severly injured, the whole situation was one of chaos, no one objected) and yet, as can be also clearly seen: many of the people took of their shoes, despite this being an emergency and despite the mosque being temporally converted to an infirmary!

Another one of his lies that repeats time and again is the one that a woman with a headscarve has been insulted. This, just as the mosque claim, obviously serves to paint a very bad picture of the demonstrators to religious people. The idea behind this is - as always with Erdogan - polarization. If, so he thinks, he can assemble the religious people as a united front behind him, than he will always have the majority of the population on his side. The worst thing happening to him is then logically that religious people turn away from him. Regarding this lie there has been no proof. On the contrary there are many well documented incidents that clearly show that the demonstrators are very open to everyone, and particularly also for religious people. If there would be a hatred towards women with headscarves and openly religious men it is very unlikely that so many of them would have been in Gezi Park for a long time and many still are. It is very unlikely that if this accusations were true two friday prayers would have been held in Gezi Park and a religious holiday would have been celebrated, even with a temporal alcohol ban in Gezi Park - yet, this happened and there is sufficent proof for it. The group Antikapitalist Muslims has time and again refuted the claims Erdogan made regarding the alleged hatred of the demonstrators towards religion and religious people. And even if this one incident was to be true and did in fact happen, it should be regarded - though nonetheless despicable - as an isolated incident in the light of all these other well documented examples. If there was only this one stupid thing by one stupid person in more than two weeks, how could you hold all the others accountable for that in the light of the great tolerance between all people that has been shown in practice every day? 

He also repeatedly attacked the alleged "interest lobby" that is supposedly staging these protest and he once again detected an organized plot against him. He repeatedly referred to the dates of the three big coup d'etats, thus insinuating that people are planning to violently overthrow him in the spirit of these coups. 

In his speech Erdogan also thanke the ultranationalist, racist MHP for their stance and there were some MHP flags at the gathering of the AKP today. This once again shows that the ultranationalists try to play an opportunistic game by pretending to have some sympathy for the protest, yet firmly positioning themselves behind the power. The support Erdogan continues to draw from far right syntheses of islamism and ultranationalism-fascim, like i.e. the BBP tradition, is worrying in itself.

At the moment of writing this blog entry Taksim and Gezi Park are under attack. Erdogan had also threatened the protesters in his speech that they should clear Gezi Park or the police forces would do it until sunday. Obviously this attempt has now begun. Erdogans strategy of oscillating betwen talks and violence that he turned to after days of mere violence, thus continues.

See here some summary reports from Erdogans speech:

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