Netherlands and Turkish Hatred in Europe

Netherlands and Turkish Hatred in Europe by Ahmed Necip YILDIRIM in
Netherlands and Turkish Hatred in Europe by Ahmed Necip YILDIRIM in

By Ahmed Necip YILDIRIM

What price Netherlands will pay for “shameless behavior”?

Natherlands deported Turkey’s Family and Social Policies Minister who is a woman. Also barred the flight of the Turkish Minister of Foreign Affairs and declared him persona non grata.

It is against all international diplomatic norms for ministers of a friendly country to be refused permission to visit their own consular offices.

Netherlands, is supposedly a friend of Turkey and a country that is not only a NATO ally but also on good diplomatic terms with Turkey. Would the country have done the same, refusing the ministers of any other European countries or the US from entering the country?

The Dutch police were using water cannons and killer dogs against Turkish protesters. Protesters were hit by batons. What have you, to quell the protest, in violation of human rights? Where is the UN?” Moreover, the show of support by the Turks outside their own consular office was in response to the highly unintelligent actions of the Mayor of Rotterdam.

Turkish President Recep Tayyip Erdogan has warned that the Netherlands will “pay the price” for its “shameless” treatment of Turkey’s ministers, which was in all means against the international diplomatic norms.

Europeans become increasingly hostile towards Turkey, after the failed Western engineered coup to topple the not-so obedient Erdogan regime. The due referendum in Turkey will certainly make the Turkish nation more independent and more non-obedient. This is the basic reason why Westerners, particularly Europeans are anxious.

Referring to the Netherlands’ mid-March election, “Hey Netherlands! If you are sacrificing Turkish-Dutch relations for the sake of the elections on Wednesday, you will pay a price,” Turkish President Erdoğan said in a heavily-worded speech on Sunday, at an event in Kocaeli, near Istanbul.

Will Europeans one day comprehend the different types and even much more different levels of democracies practiced by different countries? When criticizing democracy in Turkey, how do Europeans think Turks choose their leaders? They either lack the intelligence to understand, or they are stereotyped, or brainwashed so thoroughly by the “Western” propaganda or maybe simply full of hatred and xenophobia.

There are approximately 5.5 million Turks living outside the Turkey, with around 1.4 million voters only in Germany. It is natural that “the Yes” and “the No” campaigns for referendum are keen to get them on side. Both sides planned a number of rallies in countries with large numbers of eligible voters, especially Germany, Austria and the Netherlands.

Netherland’s decisions, citing public order and security concerns, infuriated Ankara and prompted the Turkish government to summon the Dutch charge d’affaires to Foreign Ministry in protest.

Normally, Turks and Muslims all over Europe are “peaceful and law-abiding”. All they demand is respect for the “human rights” and “democratic rights”

Decisions taken by Netherlands and other Europeans have increased concerns that it might provoke or stimulate consequences like endless terrorist attacks in European capitals. It is believed that the Europeans have made a huge mistake to destroy many countries in the Middle East, hence causing a flood of desperate refugees to spill over into Europe.

In the meantime, Dutch Embassy in Ankara and consulate in Istanbul, along with their residences, are closed off late Saturday due to “security reasons”.

The Turkish minister was to take part in a rally aimed at gathering support for a constitutional referendum in Turkey due on April 16. So why it should be regarded as awkward if Turkish minister insisted to hold a rally in the country and address people who are supposed to use vote in elections. Turkish minister wanted to address the Turkish there to garner their votes in referendum that will allow Turkey switch from stale parliamentary system into a presidential system.

EU leaders have been criticizing Turkey, amid a growing row over the Turkish politicians to hold rallies in European countries; while the same criticism has not been projected towards Netherlands, Austria or Germany. Lets ask it sincerely: Our main concern is democratic norms or xenophobia?

It is obvious that recently nationalist, extremist and xenophobic far-right political discourse is very popular across Europe. Relatively, European politicians do not hesitate to grab the opportunity and to manipulate this tendency.

This is why one of the reasons why President Recep Tayyip Erdogan accused Germany and the Netherlands of “Nazism” after officials of these countries blocked rallies there, ignoring all norms of international relations.

Neglecting Dutch decisions to block democratic rights of politicians and citizens, the media across Europe preferred to cry “democratic principles are under great pressure” in Turkey. After all, the democratic rallies aimed to encourage a large number of Turks living in Europe to vote in the referendum that would change political system in Turkey. Isn’t voting a democratic right? Can we talk of democracy without meeting, voting and rallying?

Why would France had gone ahead to allow rallies in France if it was a threat to security or it had an undemocratic basis?

President Erdogan likened the Netherlands to “a banana republic”, demanded international organisations impose sanctions on the Netherlands, and accused countries in the West of “Islamophobia”. He also made it clear that “I have said that I had thought that Nazism was over, but I was wrong. Nazism is alive in the West,” he added.

Meanwhile, German, Dutch and some other politicians appeared to harden their rhetoric against Turkey.

What is the row about?

Why are Europeans are trying to prevent the rallies of Turkish politicians? Many of the countries have cited security concerns as the official reason.

Why Referendum in Turkey is a life-or-death issue?

In order to answer this question one needs to know the history of modern Turkey and the last two centuries of Ottoman Empire.

Turkey has been booming under the leadership of President Recep Tayyip Erdogan from every aspect. The country wants to get rid of the stale old system. The country was frozen for over sixty years. A cult of “the establishment” was ruling the country for decades.

Leaders like Menderes, Özal and Erbakan were small deviations from the strict path the formulated by the establishment. Justice and Development Party founded by Recep Tayyip Erdogan has been the strongest anti-establishment movement in Turkey.

Turkey’s vision under Erdogan leadership is simple and clear:

Turkey wants to be independent!

Turkey wants to be democratic!

Turkey wants true justice in distribution of resources!

Turkey will no longer be under the control of a certain circle, well-connected to some international centers.

Turkey wants to be a superpower!

Turkey clearly claims the Ottoman legacy!

Turkey wants to decide the fate of its nation on its own!

Turkey wants to establish multidimensional relationship with different international powers.

No country, not source, no group, no organization… can dictate any policy to Turkey!
Turkey wants to end the terrorism on its lands!

Turkey will be ruled by the real owners of the country. Do you know who are they? They are those who have the same spirit as Sultan Sanjar, Sultan Alp Arslan, Osman Gazi, Fatih Sultan Mehmed; i.e. the Conquerors!

Those who do not share that spirit and those who hate to see Turkey rising are all aligned in one anti-Erdogan camp.

President Erdogan’s opponents claim that the constitutional change will bring about authoritarianism, entrenching dictatorship with unfettered powers. The biggest lie is that with this constitutional change, Erdogan is ostensibly trying to become a dictator. I am very doubtful if these guys have ever read any serious book on “Constitutional Law”. The majority of the people who negatively talk on the constitutional change do not even have a smattering knowledge what these changes are truly bringing about. When it comes to local values and future of the country anyone with an average commonsense would support such a change. For example, the nationalist party (MHP) has stood up to support the constitutional change.

So, the real struggle and conflict is not about the content or the formality of the change in constitution; it is more about the conflict between spirits. On the one hand, there are those who represent the Local, National, Conservative, Ottoman, adhering to traditional values. These are the people who want to see a new and strong Turkey which is holding the core values of Ottoman Empire. On the other hand, there are those who are against this world-view. The first group follow Erdogan and will say “Yes” to this referendum, while the second (anti-Erdogan) group will say “No”. This is the reason why opponents of the bill have fought it every step of the way to the referendum.
President Erdogan is blamed to be divisive. I believe he should be called “awaker”; the person who invoked Ottoman spirit. Self-confidence, decisiveness, determination, unity, solidarity has never been so widespread in the country.

No one is to blame the already alienated marginal groups. Even in Ottoman times, when the army was going for the war, there were small groups stabbing the country from the back. So there is nothing to be surprised about.

The existing constitution of Turkey was drawn up under the surveillance of military after the coup of 1980. Can you imagine: A democratic country living under a constitution that was drawn up under the shadow of a military coup.

The existing political system in Turkey is never suitable for a global power. The draft constitutional change would turn Turkey from a parliamentary system to a presidential republic. The new system is more akin to the United States.

The biggest political disaster in the history of modern Turkey has been the existing parliamentary system resulting in unwieldy coalitions that have hamstrung Turkey in the past and holding back Turkey’s progress.

The new draft constitution, that is to be put to a referendum scheduled for 16 April, will establish a presidential system. Similar to United States of America, the new constitution will significantly increase the powers of Turkish Presidency. The presidential system will consolidate a proper checks and balances system, like the United States.

The president will no longer be chosen by the parliament but directly by the people. The constitutional change will streamline decision-making as the presidents will not have to contend with another elected leader, the prime minister.

Progress and development in Turkey under Erdogan leadership has been simply astonishing. This constitutional change will pave the way for a long standing stride towards becoming a global actor.

One criticism on Dutch move against Turkey: “Since when the Europeans – Dutch colonialists/pirates in particular – have a sense of human morality? Anyone that has half a chance to travel around Asia would be loath to miss numerous Dutch colonialist statues, memorial halls even, mansions built for the Dutch “masters” who rampaged around Asia to ‘civilize’ the Asian ‘barbarians’. Perhaps, Indonesians should tell us how the Dutch were trying in vain to “re-liberate” Indonesia after WWII? Or Chinese should tell us how the Dutch were trying to enforce the “free trade rules” – read opium trafficking – in Tainan, Taiwan in order to smuggle opium into mainland China? Time has changes, hasn’t it? Perhaps the cunning Turks are trying to teach the Dutch how to practice the Western-styled democracy in the world-renowned gigantic brothel called Netherlands? If so, why did the Dutch police prevent them to exercise their noble rights?”

By Ahmed Necip YILDIRIM
(Originally published in Turkey