Originally published under the title “‘Liberal’ Turkey Claims Europe Is Racist.”
|Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu (left) blasted European countries for “racism” and being “anti-Islamic and anti-Turkish,” partly in response to a tweet by Swedish Foreign Minister Margot Wallstrom (right) saying that a “Turkish decision to allow sex with children under 15 must be reversed.”|
It’s not a bad joke; it’s a very bad joke. Turkey, where all variants of ethnic and religious xenophobia are a national pastime, is accusing the West of being racist.
Speaking after a spat with Austria and Sweden over news reports and tweets from those countries that accused Turkey of allowing sex with children under the age of 15, Turkish Foreign Minister Mevlut Cavusoglu claimed that the behavior of European countries reflected the “racism, anti-Islamic and anti-Turkish (trend) in Europe.”
He is talking about the same Europe where the inhabitants of one of its biggest cities, London, recently elected a Muslim as its mayor. In Turkey, not even the smallest village of a few hundred inhabitants has a non-Muslim mayor.
In “racist” Austria, the police immediately arrested two suspects in connection with an attempt to set fire to a Turkish cultural center in the northern Austrian town of Wels — and at a time of rising tensions with Turkey. By contrast, Turkish law enforcement officials arrested five former gendarmerie intelligence officers just recently — nine years after the murder of Turkish-Armenian journalist Hrant Dink. These officers would probably never have been implicated if the two Islamist allies, President Recep Tayyip Erdogan’s ruling Justice and Development Party (AKP) and Fethullah Gulen, his staunchest political ally when Dink was assassinated, had not turned into each other’s worst nemesis in power-sharing fight in 2013.
Yeni Akit is an Islamist newspaper and one of Erdogan’s media darlings, a kind of TurkishPravda in its fanatical support of the president. Its editors always find a seat in the elite group of journalists who accompany the president in his private jet traveling to foreign capitals.
Recently, one of Yeni Akit’s most prominent columnists, Abdurrahman Dilipak wrote:
There is no such religion as Christianity … In reality, Jesus Christ was a Muslim coming from Jewish tradition … The name of the religion revealed to Christ was Islam … Christianity is nothing more than a cultural adherence … Judaism is already a tradition that has imprisoned itself to its own race … [Jews’] fears are as big as their rage.
Funny, Dilipak is an Islamist and his holy book acknowledges the two monotheistic religions he denies.
|Yeni Akit columnist Abdurrahman Dilipak: “There is no such religion as Christianity.”|
In another column, Dilipak claimed that “there is no such thing as the Greek nation or the Greek civilization.” Then, in following lines that exhibit typically an Islamist’s confused mind, he claims that “the Greek civilization is a civilization of … plagiarism.”
Yeni Akit did not need to hide its racism even in the aftermath of a bloodshed the entire world — except Islamist- denounced. In July, in Nice, France, shortly after the Islamist terror attack that killed more than 80 civilians, the newspaper’s headline read: “France, the perpetrator of genocide in Africa, deserves worse.”
Yeni Akit is a perfect reflection of Turkey’s popular and official racism. In March, when a jihadist suicide bomber killed three Israelis and one Iranian on a busy Istanbul street, Irem Aktas, head of the women’s and media division of the AKP branch in Istanbul’s Eyup district, commented on social media that: “Let the Israeli citizens be worse, I wish they all died.” When she wrote that in her Twitter account, at least 11 Israeli citizens injured by the bomb were being treated at Turkish hospitals. She was not prosecuted for her remarks that “wished death” to injured Israelis.
Turkey’s religious — and ethnic — xenophobia can take amusing turns, too. In September 2015, Turkish authorities banned showing religious symbols and playing music related to various religions at yoga centers. They said that having Buddha sculptures and mantra symbols, as well as playing religious music and burning incense, could be considered violations which could lead to the closure of these centers.
About a month before Turkey’s war on the “religion of yoga,” the country’s top religious body, the Religious Affairs General Directorate, issued a warning about the spreading of the new “religion” of Jediism” — the religion of the Jedi warriors in the Star Wars series. “Jediism … is spreading today in Christian societies. Around 70,000 people in Australia and 390,000 people in England currently define themselves as Jedis,” the article said, before engaging in an Islamic-based critique of a number of Hollywood blockbusters.
Against this embarrassing background, Turkey is accusing Europe of being racist. That would be like North Korea accusing Europe of being a rogue state.
Burak Bekdil is an Ankara-based columnist for the Turkish newspaper Hürriyet Daily News and a fellow at the Middle East Forum.
A Sa’ar 4.5-class Corvette of the Israeli Navy fires its canons during a naval exercise off the coast of Israel.
Israel’s Defense Ministry on Sunday announced a series of deals for the purchase of combat systems from local defense industries in the amount of $420 million by the end of this year. This is part of a project to acquire warships whose mission would to protect natural gas platforms within Israel’s “economic waters” in the Mediterranean against military threats.
An Israeli soldier training in Krav Maga.
Several dozen members of the Indian military are currently learning how to protect themselves using the Israeli martial art of Krav Maga, India Today reported this weekend.
“I brought Krav Maga to India in year 2002 after intensive training in Israel,” Vikram Kapoor — the head instructor at the International Krav Maga Federation — was quoted as saying. “This is the only self-defense technique that is being evolved every moment and that is why it is the best.”
Culminating a three-year process, delegates at the Mennonite Church USA assembly in Orlando on Thursday adopted a resolution titled “Seeking Peace in Israel and Palestine,” with approximately 98 percent voting in favor. The resolution calls on members to “avoid purchase of products associated with the occupation or produced in settlements in occupied territories.” It also establishes a process for the church to review its investments “for the purpose of withdrawing investments from companies that are profiting from the occupation.”
Rabbi Steven Wernick says Netanyahu recruited progressive Jews to find a compromise for the holy site; now that the PM has reneged, world Jewry won’t be silent
The fight for pluralistic prayer at the Western Wall is a battle already won by Jewry’s Conservative movement. For some 20 years, Conservative Jews have inhabited a spiritual home at Jerusalem’s contentious holy site, which they won through a series of Supreme Court cases — in a section allocated to the Davidson Archaeological
Cave of the Patriarchs in Hebron. (Photo credit: hebron.com)
In a secret ballot held at the World Heritage Committee’s 41st annual summit in Krakow Poland, on Friday, UNESCO voted twelve to three in favor declaring the Holy City of Hebron and the Cave of the Patriarchs “Palestinian world heritage sites”.
The resolution described a Muslim history of the city while blatantly ignoring the Biblical narrative describing 3,000 years of Jewish connection to the site. Six countries abstained from the controversial vote which, at the request of Poland, Croatia, and Jamaica, was a secret ballot; a first for such a vote.
During last month’s 2017 Chicago Dyke March, the true face of “inclusion” among “progressives” finally surfaced. According to the Chicago based newspaper Windy City Times, the march proceeded calmly with people “of all races, genders and gender identities” attending, until “the Dyke March Collective ejected three people carrying Jewish Pride flags (a rainbow flag with a Star of David in the center).”
Something is terribly broken in the relationship between American and Israeli Jews. I say this as an American Jew who has lived in Israel for almost half a century. But if anyone thinks this started with Women of the Wall or PM Netanyahu’s recent – and I believe unfortunate – backtracking on the agreement over egalitarian prayer space at the Kotel, he is suffering from selective memory, if not total denial.
gentleman from times gone by. He was soft-spoken, courtly, and wore his pants hoisted high and held up by suspenders; clearly, a European who had personally endured horrors in the last century.
Indeed, he had personally survived the Holocaust in Poland. Therefore, I could not immediately understand why he now attends a very left-wing synagogue—but, totally incomprehensible, was his unexpected and rather passionate defense of Poland and of the Poles. He argued on their behalf as if his very life still depended upon it.
Indian prime minister Narendra Modi’s decision to visit Jerusalem but not Ramallah has prompted much comment.
The expectation of equal treatment goes back to the Oslo Accords’ signing in Sep. 1993, when the prime minister of Israel, Yitzhak Rabin, represented his government in the handshake with Yasir Arafat, the much-despised chairman of the Palestine Liberation Organization. No one found it strange or inappropriate at the time but things look differently nearly a quarter century later.
Matthew Healy at the Atlantic, one of the few remaining liberal anti-censorship magazines, offers a disingenuous counterpoint to the debate over political correctness.
The attempts to silence dissenting points of view are counter-speech, according to Healy. And counter-speech is an important form of free expression.