The mass demonstrations began on May 28 from an ecological inconsistency: R.T. Erdogan decided to destroy the green oasis - Gezi Park in the center of Istanbul. Tree uprooting was called demagogic "reconstruction." How are the townspeople against the new construction? And the police used water cannons and tear gas against the protesters - peaceful weapon this very, like her, democracy.
Autocrat Erdogan, or Democrat, or totalitarian Islamist - does not matter. Nowadays, it is clear to a small junior high school student: he who is in power is right. It is clear to the same schoolchild how social revolts are being made and small and big revolutions are being made. To do this, there are well-established freedom spots organized by Zuckerberg and other enterprising people of the 21st century: Facebook, Twitter, and other analogues of VKontakte.
After talking through the social networks and outlining the minimum program and the maximum program, the disgruntled comrades gathered en masse in Taksim Square.
Journalists immediately caught an analogy with Tahrir Square (this is in Cairo), where the Egyptian revolution once started. The historian Lev Vershinin, however, пишетthat in Turkey is not a “spring” at all and that “Recep-Bey is itself a“ Turkish spring ”, only stretched in time and slightly dismissed as“ European values ”. In fact, this is not quite the case, because in the same Egypt “spring” was produced not only by the Islamists (the “Muslim Brotherhood” and the like). In Syria, not only Islamists fight against Assad. In addition, as noted by A. Fedyashin ("Voice of Russia"), even the pro-government press of Turkey calls the authorities' reaction to environmental protests unnecessarily harsh. As the pro-Islamist English-language newspaper, Today's Zaman, wrote, “the problem of Gezi Park can be the last straw that will break the population’s patience, and this will lead to the loss of Islamist control over Istanbul - the city that they have been running for the last 20 years.” Liberal newspapers, on the other hand, explicitly state that the reaction of the authorities could cost the careers of the “new sultan”.
For Istanbul, unrest spread to Ankara, Izmir, Adana, Samsun, Gaziantep and other cities - on 3 June, there were almost a hundred protests in different cities of the country. And almost everywhere there were clashes with the police. Almost everywhere, the state showed its opposition to popular protests. And almost everywhere, leftists, Kemalists, Kurds, and just students or trade union workers spoke against this very state in an unprecedented unity. Even football fans were noticed in their ranks, who have lately become an active segment of protest demonstrations all over the world.
This added fuel to the fire. Erdogan, whatever one may say, he himself signed in his own authoritarianism and nearness. Broken penny not worth his statement on democracy. Speaking about democracy, the Turkish people in the most natural way united in the struggle against the dictator, who from 2003 showed that this very people where to go.
SANA reports that in Izmir, demonstrators set fire to the headquarters of the Justice and Development Party. In Ankara, tear gas was sprayed from helicopters over residential neighborhoods in order to disperse the demonstrators hiding in the buildings. Hundreds of citizens there suffered in clashes with the police. Reuters reported that the Turkish police in Istanbul used pepper and tear gas against a group of young people who stoned Erdogan’s office with stones. (Other sources indicate that incendiary bottles also flew to the office). Ambulance crews reported that more than 1000 people in Istanbul were injured.
Radio station "BBC" 3 June reported that nightly clashes between protesters and police in Istanbul’s Besiktas region had become the bloodiest of all time. Mosques, shops and the building of the university turned into dressing points. The protesters dismantled the pavements at night and built barricades of them. Police responded with tear gas. About 10 thousand people participated in night collisions. In just two days, more than 67 protesters were arrested in 1700 cities across the country.
Despite the fact that in the evening of June 2, the White House reminded the Turkish authorities that “peaceful demonstrations are part of the democratic will,” R.T. Erdogan condemned the protesters, saying that they “undermine democratic principles” by their actions. At the same time, the prime minister dismissed the opposition’s accusations that his government was authoritarian and pro-Islamist.
He is convinced that behind the protests are marginal groups supported from abroad.
The old, proven for centuries argument of all politicians: we are looking for external enemies and internal enemies. Who will blame Erdogan? With Israel, he now seems to be friends. He looks at the USA and Europe as if he can (still) help advance the Sunni attacks to Syria. Maybe a convenient external enemy is Russia? But after all, Erdogan recently spoke with comrade Putin. The incident with the searched aircraft is firmly forgotten; instead, the two states want to bring the turnover to 100 billion dollars a year (according to the results of 2012, 33,3 billion dollars). Without Russia, Turkey will suffer large economically. The mere fall in tourism will hit the budget and the incomes of Turkish citizens so that a real “spring” will unfold in Ankara and Istanbul, which, logically, should be approved at the State Department and, which seems paradoxical, in Damascus.
Hearing a pulling voice from overseas, Avtokrat Erdogan hurriedly reduced.
Turkish Interior Minister Muammar Guler admitted that more 90 demonstrations were suppressed in major cities and towns. Against the background of further protests, Prime Minister Erdogan and President Gul were forced to announce that the Turkish police had harshly suppressed peaceful demonstrations. In an attempt to bring down a wave of protests, the Turkish Ministry of the Interior backtracked: it issued a statement saying that the law enforcement officers, who exceeded their authority, would be punished.
This is also a familiar trick: the police are guilty, it is not the authorities that are to blame. And we will identify the guilty and punish. So, we are good.
Deputy Chairman of the “Workers' Party of Turkey”, Bulent Esinoglu, as reported by SANA, said that mass demonstrations are nothing more than a revolution against the dictatorship that has been in power for 11 for years.
After the Erdogan government didn’t harshly or not harshly suppressed nearly a hundred speeches, comparisons began in the world press with Tiananmen Square.
In some countries of the world, actions were held in support of the Turkish people and against the policy of R. T. Erdogan. It is symptomatic that the United States was noted here. This means that the policy of the Turkish prime minister is bursting at the seams.
According to "Lenta.ru" With reference to France Press, 1 June gathered several hundred people in downtown New York to express support for the Turkish demonstrators and call on the Erdogan government for resignation.
The action took place in a park near Wall Street. Many participants dressed in red and white (colors of the Turkish flag). People held posters in English and Turkish, calling for the Turkish government to resign.
Supported by Turkish protesters and famous hackers. Grouping "Anonymus" on Monday night held a series of attacks on the websites of Turkish authorities, according to a group blog on the microblogging network "Twitter". As transmits RIA News", hackers managed to block access to a variety of government sites, including the resource of the President of Turkey and the Justice and Development Party. According to Hurriyet, the sites of some Turkish media, for example, the official Gazette of Official Gazette and the private television channel NTV, were attacked.
"Anonymus" held a rally in solidarity with the protesters in Turkey. In particular, the NTV channel was attacked for incorrect (in the opinion of the movement) coverage of the protests.
Interestingly, hacker group activists noted on Twitter that pro-government hacker groups are behind some online attacks.
This again suggests that dissatisfaction with Erdogan’s policy is so widespread that it has already spread to circles close to the government. Although, of course, rumors, sir ...
One thing is clear: within a few days, the slogans from the “greens” turned to political ones. The single demand of the rioters is the resignation not only of Erdogan, but of the entire government. Such a slogan has matured, of course, not at once and not from scratch. Dissatisfaction with the ruling party and especially the figure of Erdogan in the country has been growing for a long time. Park - the last straw, overflowing the cup of patience.
“Gezi Park is only a small part of the disgraces that Erdogan’s government creates. Erdogan is a dictator, we demand that he resign. Tomorrow we will continue to protest ", - said participant in the night protests in Ankara named Seville.
But why did the authorities of Istanbul decide to cut down trees in Gezi Park and crush Ataturk’s Cultural Center at the same time? To build a shopping and entertainment center and underground interchanges. And it seems to be an opera. The name “OccupyGezi” originated from the name of the uprooting park, which received protest actions on the network.
Alexander Bychkov (Gazeta.ru), referring to RIA "News”, Said that, demanding the resignation of Erdogan, the protesters call themselves“ Ataturk soldiers ”, oppose the Islamization of the country, call the Prime Minister a dictator and a padishah. The conflict was initiated by Erdogan himself: after all, he found it necessary to comment on mass actions. He writes, the journalist said that the Turkish government will not allow the minority to command a majority. With these words, the Prime Minister, one might say, turned the conflict into a political plane, since he stated that the main cause of the unrest is ideological.
On the streets of Ankara, notes A. Bychkov, at least 20 thousands of protesters turned out. Many of them pounded on pots and pans and chanted anti-Erdogan slogans. Ankara's governor, Alyaddin Yuksel, ordered that the prime minister’s palace, not the police, be pulled down to the palace of the prime minister.
On Sunday, the demonstrators raised Ataturk’s portraits and began chanting: “Dictator Erdogan”, “Government in retirement”, “Do not bow your head, be master of your country”, “No to fascism”, “Still Taksim, still resistance” slogans against “dry law”, Muslim schools and Islamization.
“This country was created by Ataturk. We owe him everything. Turkey is a secular country. How can our prime minister forget the covenants left by Ataturk and turn Turkey into an Islamic state? He behaves like padishah, makes decisions alone. We, the soldiers of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, will not allow anyone to take away what he fought for, ”said an elderly protester in Ankara.
It is also reported about the provocateurs, who hacked into crowds and threw stones at police. Protesters push them out and chant: “Do not throw stones!”
On the night from Sunday to Monday, Erdogan made a strange statement that “there is no project in which it is precisely stated what exactly will be built on Taksim on the site of the Ataturk Cultural Center”. He added that "maybe it will be an opera or a city museum."
To the question of the correspondent RIA News", given to many protesters: “If Erdogan resigns, who do you want to see in his place?” protesters admitted that they have not yet seen any worthy figure in the political arena of Turkey.
3 Jun. EU High Representative for Foreign Affairs and Security Policy Catherine Ashton expressed "deep concern" about the violence in the cities of Turkey, as well as regret about the "inappropriate use of force" by the country's police. This is stated in the official report of Ashton, transmits RBC. She expressed hope “for the speedy recovery of all injured” and called for restraint of the conflicting parties and an end to violence.
On the same day, it became known that protests against the construction of a shopping center on the site of the park were expressed by world famous trade brands. Representatives of many companies said they would not ship their products to the mall, if built, they report "Vesti". And what about Erdogan? He said that the reconstruction of the area is carried out in order to facilitate the movement of cars and vehicles. He has no intention of abandoning his construction plans.
Vladimir Avatkov (IA "REX") writes:
“The authorities planned to build a parking lot and a shopping center in the area, as well as to expand the road. And they could hardly imagine that the creation of a new one would lead to protests against the current - the current regime throughout the country. By the way, the fact that the Prime Minister of Turkey, R. T. Erdogan himself, Ottoman barracks were located in the park was also symbolic. Initially, with his reforms, Erdogan tried to drive the military into the barracks. And now I moved to the demolition of the barracks, and the reforms began to return to him a boomerang, the question is how. ”
Stanislav Tarasov (IA "REX") notes:
The “revolutionary plot” in Turkey develops according to the classical scenario. More recently, Erdogan, speaking at various meetings, welcomed the "Arab Spring", supported the "overthrow of dictators" in some countries, and stated that henceforth "Turkey can be an example of modern democracy in the region." Now the Turks call Erdogan a “dictator,” demanding his overthrow ... ”
Historian and political scientist Lev Vershinin ("But") believes that a lot in the conflict depends on the position of the West. The Kemalists in Turkey are sensitive to the opinion of the “elder brothers”, but, unlike Erdogan, who puts himself on the United States, they look to the European Union. Therefore, the outcome of the confrontation will be determined by the consensus of Brussels with Washington, which will have to share something, allowing the EU to participate in projects in the Middle East and South Caucasus. Vershinin believes that "the case will eventually end in a compromise." What kind of compromise?
Erdogan will retain the position, he will not be thrown off, but his star will start to roll. There will be no repression, and if they do, they will lead to a deterioration, which the “neo-osmans” cannot but understand, writes the historian. Erdogan’s recent victory over the army was obviously the last in the “victoria” of neo-Ottomanism. The appetites of Turkey as an independent regional player will be measured, the internal political climate will soften. In the future, it is possible that the Kemalists will return to Ankara.
Observed and commented on Oleg Chuvakin
- especially for topwar.ru
- especially for topwar.ru