Category Archives: Turkey – Islam winning against seculars

Turkey: On the anniversary of conquest of Constantinople, Muslims pray before Hagia Sophia demanding it be converted to a mosque

Turkish soldiers wearing Ottoman-era uniforms perform in Istanbul, Turkey, Saturday, May 30, 2015 during a rally to commemorate the 562nd anniversary of city’s conquest by the Ottoman Turks.

Men and women from across the country gathered before the Hagia Sophia museum early May 31, as part of an event organized by the Anatolian Youth Association (AGD) with the motto “Break the chains, Open Hagia Sophia,” and prayed the morning prayer with a call for the reconversion of the museum into a mosque.

Designed as a Christian basilica in the sixth century by Anthemios of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus, Hagia Sophia is now a UNESCO World Heritage site…

unnamed-2A group of devout Muslims from across Turkey prayed before the city’s historic Hagia Sophia on the 562nd anniversary of the Turkish conquest of Istanbul, demanding that the site be turned back into a mosque.

And dont’s miss this: Surrounded by Ottoman soldiers, Erdoğan toughens rhetoric against New York Times: Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan has slammed the New York Times for the third time in a week.

“This newspaper had once called Ottoman Sultan Abdulhamid an ‘absolute monarch.’ And today it directs to the Republic of Turkey and me the hate that it once directed to the Ottoman state,” Erdoğan said at the May 30 event in Istanbul marking the 562nd anniversary of the Turks’ conquest of Istanbul.

Erdoğan was referring to the U.S. daily’s reports on Turkey’s Young Turk Revolution in 1908, which restored the Ottoman constitution of 1876, ending Sultan Abdulhamid’s rule with an iron fist. “Abdul Hamid’s reign as an absolute monarch is over. The forces of the Constitutionalists are in full possession of the capital after fierce fighting following an attack which began about 5 o’clock this morning, and in which the attacking troops used artillery,” an NYT report had said on April 25, 1909 [?!?].

As the June 7 general elections approach, Erdoğan has toughened his rhetoric against critical voices in the Turkish media, as well international outlets. Most recently, he slammed the New York Times during rallies on May 25 and May 26, over its May 22 editorial that criticized his “long history of intimidating and co-opting the Turkish media”…

unnamed-10The 478-man “Conquest Unit” formed by the Turkish Armed Forces on Erdoğan’s order to participate in the event marking the 562nd anniversary of the Turks’ conquest of Istanbul included Janissary soldiers.


Canary Mission Website Gives Hard Left a Taste of Its Own Medicine

There’s a website called “Canary Mission.” I don’t know who’s behind it. Nor, it seems, does anyone else. But I think it’s a great exercise in turning the tables on anti-Israel activists who have been ‘shaming’ people online for years.

Canary Mission says its aim is to “expose individuals and groups that are anti-Freedom, anti-American and anti-Semitic in order to protect the public and our democratic values.”

It seeks to do this by maintaining an online database, complete with pictures, biographies, Facebook posts, videos, and quotes from anti-Israel activists who are seemingly apoplectic that their public behaviour has become, well, even more public than it was before.

And while I’m kind of sad that political activism in both the United States and the United Kingdom has sunk to this level, it isn’t new, and thusly there shouldn’t be the outcry over it that there has been online.

The hard-left, combined with anti-Israel specialists, have been doing this to people of a pro-Israel, or right-wing persuasion for years now. I should know – they’ve done it to me.

From the shady Powerbase website, linked to the vile SpinWatch group, the left has habitually sought to ‘out’ and ‘shame’ those who don’t share its opinions, especially those who don’t share them vocally…

A Turkish English-language site is already whining about Islamophobia. Mind you, their article rants about more than just Canary Mission: it carries on about Pam Geller, Mohammed cartoons, Charlie Hebdo and so on.


Hundreds call for Hagia Sophia to be converted into mosque in Istanbul rally

Hundreds of people demanded that the historic Istanbul Hagia Sophia museum be converted into a mosque during a rally in Istanbul on May 24.

People gathered outside Istanbul’s Hagia Sophia, in the historical Sultanahmet district, with some carrying signs that read: “Hagia Sophia needs to be reopened as a mosque,” and “Let our lives be sacrificed for Islam.”

The protest was led by many Turkish nongovernmental organizations, including the Humanitarian Relief Foundation (İHH).

Designed as a Christian basilica in the sixth century by Anthemios of Tralles and Isidorus of Miletus, Hagia Sophia is now a UNESCO World Heritage site.

Hagia Sophia remained a center of Orthodox Christianity until 1453, when the city was conquered by Ottoman Turks under Sultan Mehmed II, known as the Conqueror of Istanbul. After 916 years of service as a church, he ordered Hagia Sophia to become a “victory mosque,” symbolizing the Muslim conquest. The mosaics of the church were covered with plaster and were successfully restored in the 20th century.

Hagia Sophia was used as a mosque for 482 years. Following the Ottoman Empire’s collapse, it was converted into a museum by republican officials in 1935.


Dark Clouds Over Turkey

With two weeks to go before a crucial parliamentary election in Turkey, tensions are rising and some critics of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan fear a new crackdown is starting to ensure that his Justice and Development Party wins. That kind of brute manipulation of the political process would be a serious mistake, further weakening the country’s battered democracy and tainting whatever victory might emerge.

After more than a decade of amassing power as Turkey’s leader, Mr. Erdogan could be on the verge of realizing his dream of changing the Constitution to make the president, rather than the prime minister, the leading political authority. His party, known as A.K.P., would have to win 330 seats in Parliament on June 7 — a three-fifths majority — to take a proposed constitutional change to a referendum.

The party won only 326 seats in the last election in 2011, and on Friday Reuters reported that the most recent poll by the research firm Konda suggests that support for A.K.P. has declined.

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Turkey: Mall in Bursa cancels opening of Christian and Jewish prayer rooms after attacks

A recently opened mall in the İnegöl district of western Bursa province has canceled the opening of its prayer rooms for Christian and Jewish visitors after being subjected to intolerant attacks, the mall’s founding president has said in a written statement.

Mobiliyum AVM, a large furniture mall opened in İnegöl on May 9, hosts around 200 domestic furniture producing firms and aimed to bring furniture producers under one umbrella.

The mall was to include prayer rooms for Christian and Jewish visitors as well as Muslims, though the rooms had not been opened as they were still being readied.

However, the mall decided to cancel the opening of the prayer rooms for Christian and Jewish visitors, Haluk Özbek, the mall’s founding president, said in a written statement…

…Özbek also told daily Hürriyet the attacks were caused by a lack of tolerance…

And yet how many reports have I read from Turkey whining about ‘Islamophobia’ in Europe? I could not count them. There seems to be one or two every week.


Turkish intelligence helped ship arms to Syrian Islamist rebel areas

A locally made shell is launched by rebel fighters towards forces loyal to Syria’s President Bashar al-Assad at the frontline in al-Breij district of Aleppo December 10, 2014. REUTERS/SULTAN KITAZ

Turkey’s state intelligence agency helped deliver arms to parts of Syria under Islamist rebel control during late 2013 and early 2014, according to a prosecutor and court testimony from gendarmerie officers seen by Reuters.

The witness testimony contradicts Turkey’s denials that it sent arms to Syrian rebels and, by extension, contributed to the rise of Islamic State, now a major concern for the NATO member.

Syria and some of Turkey’s Western allies say Turkey, in its haste to see President Bashar al-Assad toppled, let fighters and arms over the border, some of whom went on to join the Islamic State militant group which has carved a self-declared caliphate out of parts of Syria and Iraq.

Ankara has denied arming Syria’s rebels or assisting hardline Islamists. Diplomats and Turkish officials say it has in recent months imposed tighter controls on its borders…


Middle East turmoil if Egypt’s Mursi executed: Turkish presidency

Pro-Islamist demonstrators hold a banner that reads ‘Coup leaders can’t trial Mursi’ during a protest in support former President Mohamed Mursi at the courtyard of Fatih mosque in Istanbul, Turkey, May 17, 2015. REUTERS/YAGIZ KARAHAN

Turkey’s presidential spokesman said on Monday the Middle East would be thrown into turmoil if Egypt carried out its death sentences on former president Mohamed Mursi and other senior Islamists.

An Egyptian court on Sunday sought the death penalty for Mursi and 106 supporters of his Muslim Brotherhood, in connection with a mass jail-break in 2011. A final ruling is expected on June 2.

Ibrahim Kalin told a news conference in Ankara the sentences were a “breach of justice” and called on the international community to speak out more strongly against them.

“The subject demands universal attention. The execution orders and carrying them out will push the Middle East into turmoil,” he said.

Turkey would work with the U.N. Human Rights Commission following the sentences, and take “all necessary steps”, he added.

Turkish President Tayyip Erdogan is a vocal supporter of Mursi, Egypt’s first democratically-elected president, and relations with Egypt have soured since he was forced from power by the army in 2013…


Albania: Turkey to build largest mosque in the Balkans, financing of €30 million to be supplied by Turkish Presidency of Religious Affairs

The Turkish Presidency of Religious Affairs will finance the building of the Balkan’s largest mosque in the Albanian capital Tirana, authorities said.

Mazhar Bilgin, deputy chairman of the trustee committee of Turkey’s Diyanet Foundation, told Anadolu Agency on Tuesday that the complex will be 10,000 meters square.

The mosque will be built near the Albanian parliament’s building in Tirana.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan, Albanian President Bujar Nishani, Albanian Prime Minister Edi Rama, Turkey’s top cleric Mehmet Gormez and Albanian Muslim community leader Skender Brucaj will inaugurate the construction work of the mosque Wednesday.

Bilgin told Anadolu Agency that the mosque will be able to accommodate 4,500 people…


Turkey’s Erdogan Calls on Europe to Welcome More Migrants from Syria and Iraq

Nearly 1,000 refugees (most from Syria) were safely brought ashore in Italy after being abandoned by suspected smugglers on a merchant ship that was locked on automatic pilot and set on a collision course with the coast. December 2014. Source.

Turkey’s President Recep Tayyip Erdogan called on Europe Wednesday to take in more migrants and refugees from Syria and Iraq, saying his own country has borne the brunt of the refugee crisis and has been sheltering about 2 million people.

Turkey has spent $5.6 billion to care for 1.7 million Syrians and 300,000 Iraqis living in refugee camps or in Turkish cities, Erdogan said during a visit to Albania.

Speaking after meeting with his Albanian counterpart Bujar Nishani, Erdogan said developed countries should do their “duty” and offer solutions for the migration crisis.

We all witness “how the immigrants are dying in the Mediterranean and elsewhere,” Erdogan said. Hundreds of migrants have died so far this year in sea crossings trying to reach Europe. Most have perished when their overcrowded boats overturned or sank as they sailed from Libya to Italy.

“Can we be insensitive to these homeless, unsheltered poor people?” Erdogan asked. “Shouldn’t the developed countries offer a solution to these people? They have their obligations too. Everybody should do their own duty”…

F&ck off, Erdogan. You are helping to prolong the Syria crisis and we don’t want any more Muslims.  We are suffering from Islamonausea. 

We know what you are thinking: speaking to Turks in Turkish you tell them to “carry Islam to Europe victorious.”



More Evidence Turkey Supports Al Qaeda

Turkey has become “Pakistan on the Mediterranean.” Its diplomats may say one thing to their American counterparts when they condemn terrorism and extremism or speak about the merits of democracy and economic transparency, but the action and behavior of the Turkish leadership is far different.

Both the Iraqi government and the Syrian Kurds who have done more than anyone else to fight the Islamic State have long complained that Turkey was not only turning a blind eye to the most radical groups in Syria, but also actively supporting them.

First, there’s the passive support. If Turkey wanted to stop the flow of foreign fighters into Syria, it could simply tweak its visa rules for those countries that are the source to require visas for those under the age of 40.

This wouldn’t impact most businessmen, but would stop the impulsive Jihadi. It could stop allowing thousands of foreign fighters to traverse its territory virtually unmolested. Stopping two dozen, when more than 100 times as many get a free pass, isn’t counter-terrorism; it is optics, equivalent to when Pakistan arrests a Taliban shadow governor, all the while supporting the rest…

Erdogan & Co — devout Sunnis — dislike the Alawites more the Al Qaeda.


Mid-week rant from Turkey: Germany, Denmark not doing enough to fight discrimination against Muslims

Germany and Denmark came under fire from the U.N. over growing discrimination of Muslims. Reviewing various reports from civil society organizations in both Germany and Denmark, discrimination and xenophobia is a growing trend in both countries as the two countries are not doing enough to eliminate discriminatory elements from both state institutions and society.

“Racism in Germany is not only found in extreme right-wing circles, but in all parts of society,” the German government admitted to the U.N. Committee on the Elimination of Racial Discrimination in Geneva on Tuesday.

“Many politicians and parties fail to consistently disassociate themselves from racist resentments, stereotypes and prejudices,” added Selmin Çaliskan, secretary-general of Amnesty International in Germany. The German Institute for Human Rights warned against growing racism in the country and urged the government to take an active stance in combating it.

Danish government policies have not served many immigrants’ needs leading them to become the most alienated and demoralized individuals in Danish society, much like immigrant populations elsewhere.

“Today, the problem was not only the failure of authorities to take responsibility, but that the state party itself was discriminating. There was a lack of effective remedies due to the failure of the incorporation of the International Convention on the Elimination of All Forms of Racial Discrimination and other international laws in the national legislation. The government was in denial of hate crimes while other issues of concern were racial profiling,” said a Danish nongovernmental organization, the Documentation Centre for Racial Discrimination…

When it would appear too obvious to have highly-places politicians deliver rants too often, the ruling party turns to news sites sympathetic to the AK Party.


Turkey, Saudi-led regional coalition gears up efforts to topple al-Assad

Free Syrian Army fighters

Turkey’s always dynamic, always changing agenda does not permit many of us to follow and cover foreign policy issues in the necessary depth. This is especially the case amid the tense internal political climate on the eve of the June 7 parliamentary elections. One of the top issues concerning Turkish diplomacy, which is least covered by the media, is the Syrian issue – not only because Turkey hosts around 2 million Syrians but also because of the security challenges that it causes in the country.

Recent developments from Syria show that the Bashar al-Assad regime is having difficulty holding strategic points in deserted eastern areas against the Islamic State of Iraq and the Levant (ISIL), and in the northern and western parts against the Free Syrian Army (FSA) and other armed groups such as Ahrar al-Sham and al-Nusra, which have ties to al-Qaeda. Both groups are known to be Salafist and predominantly based around Aleppo and Idlib.

The FSA and these two groups are believed to be composed of a military force of around 50,000 to 60,000 men and are actively fighting against al-Assad’s army, which has been losing important manpower recently. The rebel group seized Idlib in a strategic victory against regime forces, clearing its rule in the northern part of Syria, with similar military achievements in the south as well. Reports suggest that rebels have now engaged in heavy fighting against the Syrian army in the Latakia province in areas close to al-Assad’s ancestral home. This port city is believed to have a strategic importance for the regime and its fall will give a huge blow to al-Assad…

Sorry but I don’t trust either Erdogan or Saudi Arabia. What on earth might be the result of this?