FETÖ as a cult

Published 01.09.2017 00:50

Last month, a bizarre incident took place during the trial of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ)-affiliated soldiers who attempted to raid the hotel where President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan was staying during the July 15 coup attempt with the aim to assassinate him. In the trial held in Muğla province, while Erdoğan's lawyer was reading the charges against FETÖ leader Fetullah Gülen, the defendants covered their ears until the lawyer was done reading. These people cannot even stand listening to the charges against Gülen and still staunchly deny links to him.

This incident proves how diabolical the FETÖ cult is. Their loyalty to Gülen permeated the depths of their characters, yet they do not admit their links to Gülen by obeying Gülen's instructions.

In Janja Lalich and Michael D. Langone's book, "Take Back Your Life: Recovering from Cults and Abusive Relationships," cults are depicted as follows: "The group displays excessively zealous and unquestioning commitment to its leader and regards his belief system, ideology, and practices as the Truth, as law." All these peculiarities are seen in FETÖ members.

We can see that FETÖ disciples show all the other characteristics attributed to cult members. For instance, the description of cults that "the group is elitist, claiming a special, exalted status for itself, its leader and members" perfectly describes Gülenists. As Gülen regards himself as a messiah who will save humanity, his disciples call themselves the golden generation who serve him. Also, the mansion where Gülen lives in Pennsylvania is called the Golden Generation Worship and Retreat Center.

In addition, as manifested in their atrocious actions, including the attempt to assassinate their own country's president, killing 249 people and bombing Parliament, "the group teaches or implies that its supposedly exalted ends justify whatever means it deems necessary. This may result in members› participating in behaviors or activities they would have considered reprehensible or unethical before joining the group." Although Lalich and Langone give considerably petty crimes as examples such as stealing or lying, Turkish people witnessed how they could go much further on the night of the coup attempt.

Many further examples can be found, but the truth is, this cult has turned into a crucial national security issue for Turkey, and its many allies, particularly the U.S., do not display the required sensitivity to the issue. 

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