Climbing on top of tanks

Published 23.08.2016 23:16

Beginning in the 1990s, Turkey struggled against the tutelage system that led to coups. It was never really squashed until 2010.

Whenever the political realm was consolidated, it was interrupted with charges of Islamism, separatism and corruption - all tried and tested smear tactics.

The Justice and Development Party (AK Party) and President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan were the first to avoid the traps and overcome tutelage.

After the perpetrators of the Sept. 12, 1980 coup were tried, no one thought a coup attempt would be possible, even though they were taken down some 30 years after the coup. But we were mistaken. A secret illegal network turned the country into a bloodbath in an insurrection on July 15.

One thing crushed the dreams of the Gülenist Terror Group (FETÖ) and its members that organized the coup: The people who climbed on top of the tanks.

This was the main reason July 15 made it into the pages of history and was more effective than the law. Today, the vast majority of Turkish people can say with peace of mind that they ended the coup and the era of coups.

The same spirit is also required against the PKK terrorism that has been tormenting the country and hindering its progress for more than 40 years.

Terrorism consists of proxy wars. Regardless of whether it is FETÖ, the PKK or DAESH, those looking to further their own interests in the region manipulate them. The motivations of the terrorist groups do not change this fact.

The nation, particularly Kurds, has a significant role in confronting terrorism. The Kurds who fought against the coup plotters in Cizre, Van and Kars on the night of July 15 must adopt the same stance against terrorism.

A new process must be initiated by pointing out that no one can trigger terrorism in the name of another. Mothers might lead this process.

The atrocious terrorist groups will not stop until people take the initiative, one reminiscent of the democracy vigils.

People should ask the Peoples' Democratic Party (HDP) why the PKK resorts to violence and terror despite the political channels being open.

RESEMBLANCE BETWEEN THE BASQUE CASE AND THE KURDISH ISSUE The developments in Turkey are reminiscent of the case in Spain. While Spain was fighting against the ETA, a smaller-scale terrorist group, the course of events started to change in 2006 and public sentiment turned against the ETA after it refused to lay down its arms even after a raft of democratic rights were granted. Everyone, including those in the Basque region, poured into streets to stand against terrorism.

The ETA was increasingly overwhelmed by public pressure. Meanwhile, the party representing the ETA, Batasuna, was closed and its leader Arnoldo Otegi was imprisoned for "glorifying terrorism." This point is noteworthy. In Spain, an EU member country, a political leader was imprisoned for glorifying terrorism.

At the end of the process, the European Court of Human Rights also approved the decision to close the Herri Batasuna, the legal face of the ETA. After strong public intervention, the ETA ended up apologizing to the public and finally laid down its arms.

After 2006, not one terror incident took place and the ETA's arms were completely laid down in October 2011. Today, some groups in the Basque region side with independence but there is no terrorism.

We too can achieve this.

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