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Cyprus PIO: Turkish Press and Other Media, 07-06-11

Cyprus Press and Information Office: Turkish Cypriot Press Review Directory - Previous Article - Next Article

From: The Republic of Cyprus Press and Information Office Server at <http://www.pio.gov.cy/>

TURKISH PRESS AND OTHER MEDIA No.110/07 09-11.06.07

[A] NEWS ITEMS

  • [01] Statements by Talat on the illegal Property Commission
  • [02] Statements by Soyer on the leakage to the press of the list of Greek Cypriot victims of the Turkish invasion who applied to the illegal Property Commission in the occupied by 40,000 Turkish troops territories of Cyprus
  • [03] The illegal regime set up by 40,000 Turkish troops continues to use the properties of the Greek Cypriot victims of the Turkish occupation army. Statements by Avci and Soyer
  • [04] Member of the Executive Committee of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Trade sees the freight as problem and not the so-called isolations
  • [05] The merging of the ANAP and DP has ended as the biggest fiasco
  • [06] Turkish Foreign Ministry submits draft decree on extension of Incirlik Air Base
  • [07] Centikaya official refused the plaquet offered by the President of UEFA alleging they are isolated
  • [08] Turkish Cypriots participating in an International Congress in Finland will hold a session on the North Cyprus culture
  • [09] The 44th Conference of the European Billiards General Assembly was held in occupied Famagusta
  • [10] An effort to register the names of several local products
  • [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

  • [11] From the Turkish press of 9 and 10 June on the Turkish army´s role in the Turkish political developments
  • [12] Columnist in Zaman analyses how the Turkish army is employing new means of communication to manipulate politics

  • [A] NEWS ITEMS

    [01] Statements by Talat on the illegal Property Commission

    Illegal Bayrak television (09.06.07) broadcast the following statements made by the Turkish Cypriot leader, Mr Mehmet Talat, during the opening of the so-called International Fair:

    President Mehmet Ali Talat has called on the Greek Cypriots to apply to the Immovable Property Commission without being afraid, if they want to solve the property issue before a solution is found to the Cyprus problem.

    The Presidents words came during an opening ceremony of the 31st Annual TRNC International Fair last night.

    Referring to the property issue President Talat said the Immovable Property Commission was set up as a local remedy with the aim of solving urgent situations and added that this commission had been accepted by the European Court of Human Rights.

    Pointing to the claims that the Greek Cypriot press has obtained the names of Greek Cypriots who had applied to the commission and were now being regarded as traitors, the President said if this is true the perpetrator would be found.

    What I cant understand is how the Greek Cypriot administration can say that it is a human right to fight for your property and then punish those who are looking for their rights in the north. Thats a double standard, he said and once again called on Greek Cypriot citizens to apply to the Immovable Properties Commission in the North without being afraid.

    Noting that the property issue being lived in Cyprus is having a negative effect on the TRNC economy, President Talat said that steps towards improving the economy will also politically strengthen the Turkish Cypriot People.

    He concluded by noting that the Greek Cypriot Side is trying to take the Turkish Cypriot People under its domination with divisive actions while the Turkish Cypriot side is working to do its best for the solution of the Cyprus problem.

    Also speaking at the opening of the fair, Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer said the most important fields in the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus is economy, tourism and education and these will continue to progress despite the ongoing international isolations.

    On the same issue illegal BRT (10.06.07) broadcast the following on statements by Talat to the ANATOLIA NEWS agency:

    President Mehmet Ali Talat has said that the immovable property commission in North Cyprus will take faster, more effective and decisive decisions than the European Court of Human Rights.

    He said that the Greek Cypriot Administration was resorting to threats, pressure and isolating methods to discourage its citizens from applying to the immovable property commission in the North on the Property issue.

    The President evaluated the latest developments on the property dispute to the Anatolian News Agency.

    Speaking to the News Agency, the President said that they had set up the immovable property commission with the aim of creating a domestic remedy for property issues adding that this commission has been recognized as such by the European Court of Human Rights.

    The President also drew attention to the fact that the Greek Cypriot Administration was still pursuing a campaign reminiscent of the inquisition era.

    Also touching upon the leaking of the names of Greek Cypriot applicants to the Greek Cypriot Press, the President expressed his firm belief that the highly confidential information was obtained through espionage activities within the commission.

    Pointing out that the property issue would not be discussed today had there been a comprehensive settlement reached on the island, the President reminded that the Greek Cypriot Leader Tassos Papadopoulos had prevented a solution to the Cyprus Problem and the property dispute by encouraging his citizens to vote against the UN sponsored Annan Plan.

    [02] Statements by Soyer on the leakage to the press of the list of Greek Cypriot victims of the Turkish invasion who applied to the illegal Property Commission in the occupied by 40,000 Turkish troops territories of Cyprus

    Illegal Bayrak television (09.06.07) broadcast the following:

    Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer has announced that an investigation is underway to undercover who leaked the names of Greek Cypriot citizens whom applied to the Immovable Property Commission in the North to the Greek Cypriot press.

    Evaluating the situation as sabotage the Prime Minister said that by handing over the names to the Greek Cypriot side the perpetrators had violated the human rights of the claimants.

    Speaking on the BRTKs Aktuel Program, Prime Minister Soyer said all institutions involved within the Immovable Property Commission were under investigation and noted that this situation had been done intentionally to harm the workings of the commission.

    Pointing to the important timing of the names being released to the Greek Cypriot Press, Prime Minister Soyer said the Greek Cypriot side had been shocked with the decision given by the European Court of Human rights which authorized an exchange of immovable property between Greek and Turkish Cypriots in Cyprus through the immovable property commission in the north.

    Noting that the Greek Cypriot side were also not pleased with the latest decision given on the Arestis case, Prime Minister Soyer said that the Greek Cypriot side had hoped that the Arestis case and the remaining 1400 cases brought to the European Court of human rights on the property issue would lead to Turkey paying millions of dollars worth of compensation, ruin the TRNC economy and by carrying the property issue to the courts would in turn block the Cyprus negotiations.

    The Turkish Cypriot side by following smart political policies has spoiled the Greek Cypriot sides plan, he added.

    Stressing that the Greek Cypriot side is violating the human rights of its citizens by preventing then from applying to the immovable property commission in the north of the island, the Prime Minister said the Greek Cypriot administrations stance is unacceptable.

    He concluded by saying that a great duty fell upon the non-governmental organizations and civil societies in Cyprus to show the Greek Cypriot administrations stance to the rest of the world.

    [03] The illegal regime set up by 40,000 Turkish troops continues to use the properties of the Greek Cypriot victims of the Turkish occupation army. Statements by Avci and Soyer

    Illegal Bayrak television (03.06.07) broadcast the following:

    A Sea Water Purification Facility was opened in the Bafra (occupied Vokolida) region today. The opening ceremony was attended by Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer, Foreign Minister Turgay Avci, the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Asim Vehbi, as well as some other high ranking officials and guests.

    The facility which was built by Israeli company- Tahal, is expected to solve the water problem in the area to a great extent.

    Speaking during the opening ceremony of the Sea Water Purification Facility Deputy Prime Minister- Foreign Minister Turgay Avci stressed that the Turkish Republic of Northern Cyprus (illegal regime subordinate to Ankara set up and maintained by 40,000 Turkish troops in the territories of Cyprus) continues its development despite the unjust international isolation imposed on it.

    Foreign Minister Avci accused the Greek Cypriot Administration (Republic of Cyprus) of trying to hinder regional development in Iskele (occupied Trikomo) and Karpaz (occupied Karpasia) in North (occupied) Cyprus, and of working against progress in the implementation of the 8th of July process.

    Mr. Avci also underlined the importance of the refining facility in terms of development in the TRNC and the fact that the facility has been built by a foreign company despite the TRNC suffering from international isolation.

    Also delivering a speech at the ceremony, Prime Minister Ferdi Sabit Soyer stated that the Turkish Cypriot People continues its economic development and democratic institutionalization.

    He said achieving progress on economy, institutionalization and life standards in the Republic depends on using resources in the right manor.

    The Premiere added that his government continues its work aimed at improving the sectors of tourism, industry, agriculture and education.

    Another speech was delivered by the Minister of Environment and Natural Resources Asim Vehbi who pointed to the increasing population in the TRNC and said this resulted in reduction of renewable natural resources.

    Touching upon the danger of global warming which is threatening the whole world, Mr Vehbi went on to say that the sea water refining facility has been built amid the Ministrys search for ways of protecting the underground resources in the country.

    The new sea-water refining facility will open the way for making use of purified sea water which will be stored in a depot with one thousand cubic metres capacity.

    [04] Member of the Executive Committee of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Trade sees the freight as problem and not the so-called isolations

    The member of the Executive Committee of the Turkish Cypriot Chamber of Industry and spokesman of the Action Committee, Mr Mahmut Sarper, in an exclusive interview to the local Turkish Cypriot daily YENIDUZEN (11.06.07) declared that with the help of the government they were able to break part of the isolations. He added that despite this development they are unable to export their manufactured goods because of the high freight charges. He said: Goods are ready. There are buyers, but we cannot offer our goods because the first thing the buyers ask is how much you will sell it? He demanded subsidies for freight charges from the government in order to start exporting their goods.

    (MHY)

    [05] The merging of the ANAP and DP has ended as the biggest fiasco

    Turkish daily HURRIYET newspaper (09.06.07), under the title Complete fiasco, reports the following:

    ANAP and the DPs rush to form a merger on the right of the political scale ended up in this years biggest fiasco with ANAP dropping out just hours before the final candidate lists needed to be handed over to the Supreme Election Board (YSK).

    The merging of the Motherland Party (ANAP) and Democratic Party (DP) which had bred high hopes in a large part of the public has turned into this years biggest fiasco. The Motherland Party declared yesterday that they were withdrawing entirely from the general election following an YSK ruling preventing ANAP candidates from running on the DP ticket. Süleyman Sar1ba of ANAP told journalists, We made this decision [to merge] in order to be able to form a united whole, and in order to avoid fragmentation between the two parties. We are going to get together with the DP after the elections, and will be supporting them throughout the elections.

    Said Muammer Aydin, YSK chairman: Even if those candidates selected to stand for ANAP resign, there is no way for them to appear on the candidate list of the DP. The DP has filled the empty positions on the candidate list and delivered it to the YSK.

    [06] Turkish Foreign Ministry submits draft decree on extension of Incirlik Air Base

    ANKARA ANATOLIA news agency (09.06.07) reports the following:

    Turkish Ministry of Foreign Affairs (MFA) submitted a draft decree on the extension of the use of Incirlik Base (in southern city of Adana) to the government.

    Use of Incirlik Base by the USA expires on June 23rd. Permission by the Council of Ministers is necessary for the extension of use.

    Diplomatic sources reminded that the Council of Ministers made a decision every year in the past to extend the period and that this was a routine procedure.

    The draft decree, sent by the MFA, also includes a note for the ministers telling the grounds of extension.

    U.S. troops have been using Incirlik Base since June 23rd, 2003 within the framework of UN Security Council resolutions to extend logistics support for their operations in Iraq and Afghanistan.

    [07] Centikaya official refused the plaquet offered by the President of UEFA alleging they are isolated

    Turkish Cypriot daily YENIDUZEN newspaper (09.06.07), in its front page under the title The return of the award, reports that the Turkish Cypriot soccer team Centikaya, which was invited yesterday night at the Hilton hotel in Lefkosia, received an award from the Chairman of UEFA, Michel Platini, as one of the eight founding members of the Cyprus Soccer Federation. But Zeki Ziya, who has received the award on behalf of Centikaya, said: I receive this plaquet not on behalf of Centikaya, but on behalf of the Turkish Cypriot soccer and returned the plaquet to the Chairman of UEFA, Mr Platini, by adding: We want this plaquet to remain with you until the embargoes on sports will be lifted. Mr Platini said that he will return it to them very soon.

    [08] Turkish Cypriots participating in an International Congress in Finland will hold a session on the North Cyprus culture

    Turkish Cypriot daily HALKIN SESI newspaper (10.06.07) reports that a group of five Turkish Cypriot artists and academicians is going to participate in the 9th International Semiotic Congress which will take place both in Helsinki and Imatra, Finland, between 11-17 June.

    During the congress, the Turkish Cypriot participants will hold a panel session on the culture of North Cyprus

    According to the paper, the participants are: Michael Walsh - so-called president of the History Section of the illegal East Mediterranean University, Johann Pillai -so-called Director of the illegal Cultural Education Office, Emin Cizenel, Anber Onar, and Gul Inanc.

    (M/L)

    [09] The 44th Conference of the European Billiards General Assembly was held in occupied Famagusta

    Turkish Cypriot daily AFRIKA newspaper (10.06.07) reports that the Northern Cyprus Billiards Federation hosted the 44th Conference of the European Billiards General Assembly at the Salamis Bay Conti Resort Hotel, in occupied Famagusta.

    According to the paper, more than 40 participants from 14 countries among them the President of the Union Mondiale de Billard (UMB), J.C. Doupont- participated in the event.

    Apart from the TRNC, the countries which attended the Conference are listed in Turkish Cypriot KIBRIS newspaper (10.06.07), as follows:

    Turkey, the Netherlands, Luxembourg, Belgium, Denmark, Egypt, France, Italy, the Czech Republic, Spain, Sweden, Austria, and Germany.

    (M/L)

    [10] An effort to register the names of several local products

    Turkish Cypriot daily KIBRIS newspaper (09.06.07) reports that the occupation regime prepared a draft bill titled Protection of the names of the Traditional and Geographic speciality Products, in order to register the names of local products in the occupied areas. It is reported in the so-called official gazette that preparations were made to secure the registration of the name of products such as hellim, trahana, sucuk, kofter and others.

    [B] Commentaries, Editorials and Analysis

    [11] From the Turkish press of 9 and 10 June on the Turkish army´s role in the Turkish political developments

    The Turkish Press on 9 and 10 June 2007 deals extensively with the role of the Turkish army in the current political developments, as follows:

    HURRIYET columnist Oktay Eksi points out that in pre-Internet age the journalists used to walk pass the General Staff headquarters in Ankara to judge from the number of lit rooms if anything out of the ordinary was afoot whereas in the age of technology the journalists, instead of taking that stroll, should, before going to bed, check the General Staff's Internet page after 2300 [ 2000 GMT].

    In his editorial in HURRIYET (09.06.07) Oktay Eksi says that indeed some 8,000 people now visit that site every day. Eksi does not think this is an auspicious trend. He especially questions the Army's call on the Turkish nation to massively react against terrorism, wondering if the Army is calling on the population to rise up [against the Kurds]. He wonders if the authors of that statement are unaware of the catastrophe that call might cause.

    Also in HURRIYET (09.06.07) Enis Berberoglu also notes in his column that now newspaper bureaus watch the General Staff's Internet page till morning in case of a midnight surprise, adding that the Army "has already raised its foot and is now looking somewhere to stamp." The columnist says the Army has made its move, but where it will stamp depends on the government. Noting that in its fight against terrorism the Army has made a reference to the UN Charter but avoided any specific reference to Article 51 on hot pursuit, Berberoglu quotes an "authoritative name" as saying that they do not want to make too solid a reference to the UN Charter in case UN adopts a decision and asks Turkey to comply with it. And in a brief 30-word sentence at the end of his column, Berberoglu writes that according to a poll conducted in Ankara by Ankara Mayor Melih Gokcek, AKP will get 52.6 percent of the votes, CHP 21 percent, and MHP 12 percent.

    After noting that General Staff's Internet site "has now become one of the active participants in daily Turkish politics" and after declaring that the people will naturally support the Army in its fight against terrorism, Ergun Babahan declares in his column in SABAH (09.06.07) that the Army statement, however, is dangerous in that it creates divisions on ethnic basis. Babahan cautions the Army against issuing such inflammatory statements in Turkey where people have been massacred for their different beliefs in recent history. Also adding that fighting terrorism is no reason to suspend democracy, the columnist believes the Army statement is also an attempt to restrict freedom of thought. He reminds the Army to realize that it is the armed forces of everyone in Turkey and thus abide by the laws of the country.

    Fikret Bila notes in his column for MILLIYET (09.06.07) that this is the first time that the Army is calling on the population to show a "mass reaction" against acts of terrorism and as such this is an indication of a "new situation." Bila believes this direct call to the people is an indication of lack of full consensus between the Army and the government over northern Iraq, and as such it could be construed more as an attempt to apply pressure on the government as well as on the United States. While admitting that this could be an effective tool of pressure, the columnist warns that the popular reaction and mass psychology should be well calibrated otherwise the popular reaction might spin out of control.

    In a column in HURRIYET (09.06.07) that touches on various developments, Mehmet Ali Birand too believes that with its midnight Internet statement the Army is bypassing the government and addressing the nation directly for support for a military operation into Iraq. After speculating that the Army might have a reason to issue such crucial statements at midnight, Birand says the statement might also be seen as a call on the public prosecutors to ban some DTP [pro-Kurdish Democratic Society Party] members from entering the parliament.

    Ertugrul Ozkok in his column in HURRIYET (09.06.07) fully backs the Army's call for national reaction to terrorism, declaring that "if pouring into the streets is going to produce a result, we will do it as well." Assuring the army generals that the whole nation is wholeheartedly backing them in the fight against terrorism, Ozkok request, however, that no politics be mixed in the fight against terrorism.

    In his column for MILLIYET (09.06.07), Guneri Civaoglu quotes Ret Gen Sener Eruygur, the head of the Ataturk Thought Association, (ADD), which organized the Republic Rallies, as saying that the General Staff's Internet statement has given them an additional incentive to organize public rallies against terrorism. Civaoglu supports the idea, and says Turks, like European civilians reacting to terrorism, could display a democratic mass reaction against terrorism.

    MILLIYET (09.06.07) reports that the Association for the Defence of Modern Lifestyle, (CYDD), has decided to hold a "silent rally against terrorism" in Istanbul. The ADD is also contacting various NGOs to hold a similar rally, according to the same report, which quotes ADD chief Eruygur as saying that the Army's statement is a call for solidarity against terrorism and that the NGOs will fulfil their duties in this regard.

    MILLIYET (09.06.07) reports that the CHP and the Motherland Party "have expressed complete support" for the Army's call on the nation to display its "mass reflex" against terrorism. Whereas, the Human Rights Joint Platform has accused the Army of attempting to instigate mass demonstrations, warning that they might lead to lynching incidents and attacks on the defenders of democracy and peace, according to the same report. Three AKP Deputies, Ersonmez Yarbay, Eyyup Sanay, and Vahit Kiler have expressed opposition to a cross-border operation, with the latter also saying that the nation is already reacting to terrorism and there is no need for the people to pour into the streets to show that reflex, according to another MILLIYET report. And while going to his Friday prayers, Prime Minister Erdogan has declined to comment on the General Staff statement, according to another MILLIYET report.

    In an article entitled "How to read the Military's New Statement", in YENI SAFAK (09.06.07) columnist Ali Bayramoglu argues that the latest General Staff statement urging the people to show "mass resistance" to terror means that the Turkish military has started to directly and openly engage in popular politics. He claims that the statement has ushered in a new process in Turkey regarding the "Kurdish issue" and accuses the General Staff of making an "extremely dangerous" move that amounts to "inviting conflict."

    In an article entitled "Let someone explain it to me", in YENI SAFAK (09.06.07) columnist Fehmi Koru expresses his concern that the latest General Staff statement might be calling for "mass reaction" to terror not in the form of popular rallies but in the form of widespread condemnations of the exercise of freedom of speech. In objecting to such a possible message, Koru asserts that the Anti-Terror Law and the Turkish Penal Law already include enough restrictions on individual freedoms to render it unnecessary to start a campaign against "our intellectuals." He also argues that PKK terrorism always escalates at times when there are constraints on freedoms and democracy.

    Under the headline, "A Dangerous Call," VAKIT (09.06.07) publishes a front-page report which asserts that the "Joint Platform of Human Rights" has issued a press release censuring the latest Turkish Armed Forces, (TSK), statement as an attempt to "provoke the people into taking to the streets" and warning that the General Staff's call for mass reaction to terror could pave the way for major acts of lynching.

    In an article entitled "Would mass reaction stop PKK Terrorism?", VAKIT (09.06.07) Editor-in-Chief Hasan Karakaya argues that mass protests of the PKK of the sort demanded by the General Staff would only serve to enable the terrorist group to close ranks and infuse it with a smug sense of being able to get 70 million people to rise up in arms against 5,000 militants. Calling attention to remarks in the TSK statement denouncing "direct and indirect support" for the PKK's terrorist activities, Karakaya asserts that the General Staff should not feel under pressure to respond to every criticism of the Turkish military or every newspaper article that appears to voice support for PKK terrorism.

    A front-page report in ZAMAN (09.06.07) entitled "General staff's call for mass reaction against terror causes controversy" quotes Sedat Laciner, Chairman of the International Strategic Studies Institution, as saying that the military's latest statement appears to have been "worded hastily" just like the recent "memorandum."

    In an article entitled "Mass resistance reflex", ZAMAN (09.06.07) publishes a commentary by columnist Mumtazer Turkone who calls on the General Staff to explain what it means by urging the people to show a "mass reaction reflex" to terrorist activities. Turkone also draws attention to the ambiguities in the TSK statement resulting from what he claims to be mistakes of expression and asks why the General Staff appears to be unable to write a fairly short communiqué in acceptable and lucid Turkish.

    In an article in ZAMAN (09.06.07) entitled "Open letter to Buyukanit from a citizen", ZAMAN columnist A. Turan Alkan responds to the General Staff's call for the public to show a mass reaction to terrorism. Addressing the Chief of Staff, he asserts that while the people would be willing to support a military campaign as far away as the Persian Gulf, they would expect the top brass of the military to conduct an effective struggle first against terrorists operating within the national borders and to successfully deal with the challenge posed by landmines.

    In an article entitled "A 'Web Site' that needs to be scrutinized", YENI SAFAK (10.06.07) columnist Kursat Bumin says that there has been interesting changes in the web site of the Turkish General Staff recently, including press statements mainly directed to the public. Although Bumin describes the latest statement issued by the General Staff which noted that an appeal to the public made in an earlier statement was actually intended to urge the public to express their reactions in a democratic manner without resorting to violence as an encouraging development, he comments: "But, could you tell me whether it could be so easy to mend the damage caused by transforming the web site of the General Staff into a place similar to that of the President of the Ankara Chamber of Commerce? Could a two-sentence correction be sufficient to alleviate the consequences of an earthquake caused by an appeal reflecting the expectation that the 'noble Turkish nation' will demonstrate 'its opposition through mass protests'?"

    Under the banner headline "Workers react angrily to those who remain indifferent to Sezer's decisions to pardon terrorists," VAKIT (10.06.07) carries a front-page report which says that there are mounting reactions to the General Staff's call for mass protests against terrorism and decisions made by the Association for Kemalist Ideology and the Association for Supporting Contemporary Lifestyle. It quotes Salim Uslu, President of the Turkish Confederation of Moral Rights Workers, as saying that the General Staff's statement tacitly accused some groups with different opinions and even encouraged attacks against them, adding that terrorism was not a problem that could be addressed by staging rallies on the military's instructions.

    In an article entitled "'Brave people should save the country'", VAKIT (10.06.07) columnist Abdurrahim Karakoc says that the government and the General Staff are now communicating through the Internet and points out that the General Staff seems to be in a hurry, creating the impression that there could be a tragedy if certain steps are not taken as quickly as possible. Expressing his concern that the General Staff's attitude may be aimed at launching a diluted propaganda campaign rather than a serious military operation, Karakoc comments: "People could easily be mobilized and convinced to attend mass protests just like the recent pro-Republic rallies. Are we prepared to fight if American troops attempt to stand in our way together with the peshmerga and PKK militants? I am of the opinion that we could we disappointed if we believe that we could intimidate them through mass protests." Karakoc concludes by saying that Turkey would gain nothing as a result of attempts to put pressure on the ruling Justice and Development Party, AKP, through nationalist rhetoric.

    In an article entitled "The first abuse of mass protests", ZAMAN (10.06.07) reporter Ali Akkus says that the statement issued by the General Staff yesterday reflected its concerns that its earlier call for mass protests against acts of terrorism could be exploited by certain groups. He says: "In its correction issued yesterday, the General Staff described 'mass protests' as 'social reactions remaining within democratic rules which do not contain violence.' Who will organize it? How will crowds be controlled? These are not clear. What is clear is that it is open to abuse."

    In an article entitled "Terror is the key player in elections", Sunday's ZAMAN (10.06.07) columnist Yavuz Baydar says that Chief of the General Staff Gen. Yasar Buyukanit is "increasing the pressure on the government for a "go ahead" into Iraq, preferably by way of a decree through Parliament." He comments: "The military also hopes to achieve a favorable result on July 23. That result would be a government which will exert more pressure on the United States and, if this does not work, give the go ahead for an invasion."

    In an article entitled "The real threat to National Security ", Sunday's ZAMAN (10.06.07) columnist Ihsan Yilmaz notes that "many in Turkey suspect that the 'incursion into northern Iraq' rhetoric, or even its realization, is part of a domestic political game that is being played against the AKP by the 'State' and its extensions in the media." He says: "It seems that the greatest national security threat to Turkey is the erosion of its generals' trustworthiness, stemming from their meddling in politics.

    In an article entitled "Under siege," Bugun (10.06.07) publishes a commentary by columnist Gulay Gokturk who accuses the military of acting like a political party and putting pressure on the government. Cautioning that some influential establishments which regard themselves as the founder and the real owner of the Republic are trying to seek support for establishing a "militarist democracy," Gokturk advises the government by pursuing a more courageous and skillful policy to thwart that plan.

    [12] Columnist in Zaman analyses how the Turkish army is employing new means of communication to manipulate politics

    Under the title: Meet Turkey´s new administrative portal: HYPERLINK "http://www.tsk.mil.tr" www.tsk.mil.tr TODAY´S ZAMAN newspaper (11.06.07) publishes the following analysis by Bulent Kenes:

    The Web site of the Turkish military, www.tsk.mil.tr, which has recently become the determining factor with regard to Turkish politics and security, deserves a good analysis.

    This new means of communication, which the military employs to manipulate politics, define its boundaries and narrow its sphere whenever necessary -- I should confess -- is in perfect harmony with todays technological trends. However, it is of course impossible to say that this method being in accord with todays trends doesnt bring with it propriety of purpose in its usage.

    They avoided defining Feb. 28 -- during which great pain was suffered, certain segments of society were subjected to the worst kinds of discrimination in the countrys history, everyone was reduced to silence, and transparency and accountability were shelved -- directly within the conventions of a normal military coup and called it a post-modern coup. It would probably be appropriate to call the efforts of the military to give a whole new direction to Turkish politics and society using www.tsk.mil.tr a cyber coup.

    The attribute of modern suits this means of communication used by the military as much as its use to depose democratic civil politics resembles the most primitive guardianship and intervention methods of the military. Maybe the contradiction generated by the advancement of the means better exposes the primitiveness of this interventionist mindset.

    The Turkish military, which has long been endeavoring to perpetually control civil politics, which it has been unable to trust using its self-declared authority, the legitimacy of which is highly controversial, and to thus control the whole nation, to which it owes its existence, sends signals through the self-justified actions it perpetrates with www.tsk.mil.tr so that it can manipulate Turkeys internal politics as well as its international policies.

    New statements are made one after the other on the Web site. These statements sometimes try to influence the judiciary, sometimes try to form de facto security zones without informing the government, and sometimes invite people to evince a social reaction against those who act in the name of liberties and democracy with their crooked mindset, which, it is claimed, supports terrorism. The open-ended statements, using broken and besmirching language, allow all sorts of interpretations and therefore are in need of being clarified by newer statements.

    The insufficiency of the language of the first online statement made on April 27 convinced a majority of Turkish intellectuals of the possibility that these statements are issued on the Web site in great haste without the General Staffs chain of command knowing about them, particularly the fact that the first one and some of the following statements were put on the site at nearly midnight, provides the chief support proving these doubts right.

    Despite the doubts in question, the April 27 statement produced all the results we assume it had targeted: ANAVATAN and the DYP, which were claimed to have been informed of the statement beforehand, did not participate in the first round of the presidential vote; the allegedly necessary quorum of 367 couldnt be reached, and therefore the Constitutional Court, appealed to by the CHP on grounds that the quorum for the session to be opened was 367, cancelled the first round under the shadow of this statement.

    While this situation made it impossible to elect a new president under current conditions, it made it possible for President Sezer, with whom the military has been on very good terms, to occupy the post of the presidency for an undetermined period of time. While the government saw the way out as heading for early general elections, to which it had up until that day objected as if it were a matter of honor, the merger scenarios on the right and the left started to be staged, scenarios that are commonly thought of as having been designed from outside the political sphere.

    However, all recent polls indicate that these interventions have increased the votes of the AK Party since they have caused a sense of victimization to form in the minds of voters, to say nothing of having a negative influence on them. However, since the opposite had been targeted, it is again commonly doubted that the interventions are changing and attempting to create an atmosphere where the elections wont be able to be held. And at this point, they are trying to capitalize on the fear and hatred spread by security concerns and the heightened terrorism alongside the online statements.

    When we look at the developments through the perspective of the PKK issue, while our soldiers are martyred every day in terrorist attacks, which are perpetrated with a timing that serves a purpose that is hard to understand, it is a must to note that these attacks are gravitating toward urban areas with a visible change of methods and are carried out with remotely controlled mine-traps.

    In this case, as terrorism escalates, the possibility of an intervention into northern Iraq, where terrorism is aided and abetted, is getting stronger, and it is feared that such an intervention might interrupt the election process and furthermore could devastate Turkeys established system of international relations.

    The General Staff is putting up the harshest opposition against the government with the statements it issues on its Web site and with verbal statements that aim at portraying the government as having a weakness against terrorism by not giving the green light to the northern Iraq intervention, which could turn into a great unpredictable adventure, thereby trying to corner the government by using the issues of terrorism and security. The military is hoping that its accusations against the government -- that it is keeping quiet in the face of terrorism -- and this method of dragging the government into a deadlock over an unpredictable intervention into northern Iraq will produce a certain result in the elections.

    Some are even predicting that in the event it is clearly understood that the AK Party will never be debilitated to the desired extent, the northern Iraq adventure can be started through a fait accompli, and since this will trigger a war, the elections will be delayed until an unknown date.

    I personally seriously fear that I may encounter an early-morning or a late-night online statement on www.tsk.mil.tr, which I check every day first thing in the morning, a statement that announces the decision to intervene in northern Iraq -- a decision that should normally be made by Parliament.

    EG/


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