EMRE – What is this fight for?

What is this fight for?Until 2010 I criticized the Turkish military for its involvement in civilian politics and faced many difficulties just because of my thoughts.Since 2011 however, when the government disappointed us, the liberals, for not keeping its promise to bring about a new democratic constitution, I have been criticizing the Justice and Development Party (AKP) government for pulling Turkey out of the league of democratic countries.

Unlike previous threats, I now face much more intense and organized threats for criticizing the government. First I received death threats from organized groups.

I faced threats from the PKK, which is very likely to have been coordinated with the intelligence agency to scare me off of criticism Even a PKK militant, who was sent to Istanbul to kill me, was arrested by the police.The government pressured my university to either silence my tweets and writings or fire me.

The university I was teaching at was only able to resist the government pressure for one year, after which they told me they couldnand#39t resist the pressure anymore and fired me in September 2013, even after classes had already been scheduled.Even after I lost my job, the government has not stopped harassing me.

Then-Prime Minister Recep Tayyip ErdoIan directly pointed a finger at me during his March 2014 election victory speech. He filed lawsuits against me, and ordered the intelligence agency and government agencies to find any possible reason to harass me, but they found nothing illegal.

Once again I am on his list of those facing the threat of arrest. At this time I honestly donand#39t know what reason will be given by his men, the hand-picked prosecutors and his beloved judge Islam Cicek, for arresting me.

I have not committed any crime other than criticizing this governmentand#39s security policies for supporting terrorist organizations like al-Qaeda and the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL) with the sole purpose of making ErdoIan happy. I criticize this government for eroding basic principles of democracy and the rule of law but that shouldnand#39t be a crime.

I criticize this government for pulling Turkey out of the Western block and turning my beloved country into yet another Middle Eastern dictatorship. We have enough of those in the world, I donand#39t want to see another one.

I criticize this government for deceiving its own people about the Kurdish issue, about Islam, about honesty, about transparency and about corruption.I criticize this government for hijacking my own religion and blending it with anti-American, anti-West sentiment and producing an identity that will turn the next generation into a breeding ground for extremist terror groups.

I criticize this government for its extra-legal activities in Syrian refugee camps to generate yet another Hamas type of organization.Honestly I donand#39t know what my crime is but I have a guess.

I think by criticizing the government and exposing the dirty business of the AKP led government and intelligence agency. Exposing their crimes is the crime that I commit.

The recent operations against the Zaman media group are once again the result of the groupand#39s efforts to expose the wrongdoings in the government. Pro-government dailies claim that the Teshiyeciler group of the Nurcu network — the first time I have heard of this organization — was one of the reasons for the operation.

When I looked into who this Teshiyeciler group was, I found the dirty business of the intelligence agency.Teshiyeciler group appears to be one of the small Nurcu groups with a few hundred followers.

Their leader, Molla Mehmet DoIan, is nothing but ignorant. It seems that intelligence officers wanted to penetrate the Nurcu network through the Teshiyeciler group and use them as a shield to find al-Qaeda supporters among them in order to label the non-violent Nurcu groups as a violent organization.

When al-Qaeda affiliated people — encouraged by intelligence agencies — contacted the Teshiyeciler group, police raided the operation and destroyed the intelligence agencyand#39s plan to criminalize the peaceful Nurcu network, this of course infuriated the intelligence agency. That is why many of these people are arrested.

You decide, which one is a crime? Plotting against peaceful networks in order to criminalize them and turn the peaceful Nurcu networks into recruitment centers for al-Qaeda or requesting that government authorities not engage in these activities?This is a fight by peaceful people who do not want to see their government engaged in dirty business — supporting al-Qaeda and ISIL — or their country turned into a crime-stained land where all criminal activities are allowed, as well as by those who donand#39t want Turkey to turn into yet another Lebanon or Iran that uses terrorist proxies to claim political victories in the Middle East.

SOURCE: Today’s Zaman