THE MEDIA WAR
“All of us who professionally use the mass media are the shapers of society. We can vulgerize that society. We can brutalize it. Or we can help lift it onto a higher level.” ~ William Bembach.
There is one aspect of the serhildan that I haven't commented on yet, mostly because I have been watching other aspects of it. The one aspect I have not mentioned yet, is that of Roj TV.
Those who follow Kurdish news may remember that, back in November of last year, the Turkish media went into a frenzy over Roj TV and Denmark, who issued a broadcasting license to Roj. And when I use the term "frenzy," I mean exactly that. If you had googled "Roj TV" back then, you would have gotten hundreds of returns referring to Roj TV, and the vast majority of them were from Turkish media. All of these articles had catastrophic, end-of-the-world sounding titles like, "Roj TV to be closed by Denmark in five minutes," or "US to use nukes on Denmark if Roj TV broadcasts continue."
Okay, I'm exaggerating, but the titles did give the impression that the demise of Roj TV was imminent. Of course, all of this media frenzy was manufactured because the Turks had something to hide back in November. At that time, the Turkish government was stepping-up its black operations within Turkish-occupied Kurdistan. The Semdinli affair was the most notorious of these black operations, but there were several other suspicious bombings that took place as well, in the month of November. These bombings resulted in mass protests in Kurdish cities throughout "The Region," and these protests made the Turkish government look bad. Very bad. That simply wouldn't do, what with the EU watching and all, so they manufactured the Roj TV event, in which Erdogan walked out of a press conference with the Danish Prime Minister because a Roj TV reporter was in the audience.
The Turkish game did not work. Denmark stood firm on the right of free expression in general, and the right of free expression for Kurds in particular.
The Google search engine, or any other search engine for that matter, went dead on the subject of Roj TV. Until the end of March, 2006, that is.
If you google "Roj TV" now, you will find some 9 pages of returns. Again, the vast majority of these are from the Turkish media. Again, it appears that the Turkish government is in a frenzy to close Roj TV and, naturally, they are engaging in this manufacturing frenzy because it kills them that Kurds outside the "territorial integrity" of the Turkish state, enjoy free expression rights. . . just like other human beings. Again, we read similar apocalyptic titles, like "Roj TV can be a dangerous toy for Danish politicians," or "Turkey insists on closure of Roj Tv," or "US also wants Roj TV to be shut down." The funniest titles come from the Journal of Turkish Weekly and Zaman, and I encourage everyone to do a Google search for "Roj TV" just to check out the hilarious titles from those two rag sheets.
No less paranoiac, but far more dangerous for its subtelty, is a piece titled "Preventing Turkey's Popular Slide away from the West," by Soner Cagaptay. Here is the so-called Voice of Reason, which is a nice way of saying that this is the fascist fist in the velvet glove. Soner Cagaptay is a Washington DC reptile posing as a Republican. The Turkish version of Michael Rubin, if you will.
Cagaptay remarks how Turkey has been "a traditional bastion of Western policies in the Middle East," which is innocent-sounding enough on the surface. That is, unless you are familiar with Gladio and CIA/MIT psychological operations against Kurds since Turkey became a member of NATO. From this perspective, Cagaptay's remarks take on a much darker color.
In other words, Turkey has been an active player in maintaining the status quo of brutal Middle Eastern social structures. Worse, Turkey has been an active creator of such structures. Cagaptay is admitting that Turkey has been an enthusiastic supporter of Kurdish genocide, and that this genocide dovetails perfectly with the strategic aims of the West. If you read carefully enough, you will clearly see that Soner Cagaptay also admits that it is the desire of the Turkish people to maintain this genocidal status quo, and all this in the first paragraph alone.
Cagaptay then turns his attention to the EU. He says that while it will take a minimum of ten years for Turkey to be ready for full EU membership--and not even that is guaranteed--he sees this as problematic, especially since other countries have spent less time preparing for EU membership while Turkey has been passed over. And, like the good Pashas' boy that he is, blames it all on PKK. He never mentions the fact that Turkey has been an associate member of the EU since 1963, when it became an associate member of the old European Community. The bottom line is that Turkey has had 43 years to prepare itself to become a full member of the EU, and it continues to be put off because it is not a democracy. In fact, it hasn't a clue as to what "democracy" means.
Turkey is still being forced by the EU to become a civilized state and it still balks at doing so. Much of the reluctance of allowing Turkey to become a full member has to do with its horrifying human rights record, a record consisting of atrocity after atrocity, perpetrated mainly against its Kurdish population.
It is a typical tactic of the Kemalist or the Fethullahci, pointing the finger at everyone else, refusing to take responsibility for one's actions while bemoaning one's own perpetual victimhood. All with the Voice of Reason. This is Washington, after all, and they simply don't do histrionics inside the Beltway.
Cagaptay claims that neither DTP nor PKK represent the majority view of Kurds in "The Region." This is pure denial by our propagandist. No doubt Cagaptay will love it if DTP is branded "illegal" before 2007 so that it won't be eligible for running in the elections. That way he will be able to point to his article while appropriating for himself the mantle of prophet. Unfortunately, life in LaLa Land has the very bad habit of coming back to hit you in the teeth, Cagaptay. I hope you have dental insurance.
As for the US, Cagaptay begs the US to tell Turkey how "valued" it is. Cagaptay begs the US to take care of PKK. Cagaptay begs the US to handle Turkey's Cyprus problem. Cagaptay begs the US to go to bat for Turkey with the EU. Cagaptay begs the US to realize how Turkey and the US share the same democratic values. In this context, I take it that "democratic values" means a shared experience of covert operations with the goal of genocide. Yeah, I'd love to hear Cagaptay lay that fact of history on the American people. As Senator George McGovern once declared:
"We were involved in assassinations, assassination attempts. We were operating paramilitary operations with mercenary forces hired in other people's countries with no knowledge on the part of our own Congress, our press or the American people. All of these things are alien to a system of constitutional democracy." (p.2)
That brings us back to Roj TV. According to our Beltway reptile, Roj TV makes Turkey's situation with the EU worse, and the recent violence in "The Region" has been caused by Roj TV. However, Cagaptay fails to mention that Roj TV has been under investigation for one full year for the same old charges, and Danish authorities have found no credibility to previous Turkish claims that Roj has "incited hatred." The Turkish government loves to use that expression, "incitement to hatred." This is what is known as psychological projection on a national scale.
Cagaptay fails to mention that the Turkish government has done nothing to improve the situation of Kurds or that human rights violations against Kurds have been escalating since 2004. I suppose that Cagaptay would prefer that Turkish propaganda be spread among Kurds via RTUK laws, which guarantee "free expression" in Kurdish language, with no more than 45 minutes per day, of pre-recorded, Turkish-language subtitled television programs. But as long as Roj TV continues to broadcast freely, all of RTUK's efforts at propagandizing the Kurdish people will be ignored.
However I have a newsflash for Cagaptay and for everyone else in LaLa Land: RTUK's efforts at propagandizing the Kurdish people will be ignored, with or without Roj TV, because everyone in "The Region" knows that RTUK exists to protect the state from the spread of dangerous ideas--like democracy, free expression and human rights--and in this respect Roj TV is definitely the antithesis of any Turkish broadcasting law.
It would appear that the Danish government is not fooled by Turkish propaganda either.
In light of the renewed offensive against Roj TV, as well as the renewed offensive against the Kurdish people under Turkish occupation, I would like to point out something else that I noticed a while ago. The following organizations have not stood against the Turkish government's attempts to silence Roj TV:
REPORTERS WITHOUT BORDERS
INTERNATIONAL FEDERATION OF JOURNALISTS
These organizations make all kinds of noble and false statements about how they exist strictly for free expression rights, and how the right of free expression cannot exist under regimes of fear and repression, or how they are engaged in global battles for free expression. They regularly feature journalists and news organizations that are under the gun in just about every patch of real estate that anyone can imagine, but they have not made any statement in support of Roj TV against the Turkish government's propaganda campaign to silence the Kurdish voice. Their silence is a crime against the Kurdish people's basic right of free expression and, by this very silence, these organizations lend support to the Ankara regime.
Therefore, these organizations are enemies of the Kurdish people.
Just as the Turkish government manufactured it's anti-Roj TV media event in order to divert attention from its renewed black operations against Kurds under Turkish occupation, so it is now attempting to manufacture a new media event against Roj TV, to divert attention from its murder of Kurdish demonstrators, Kurdish children, the disappearance of Kurds, the detention of Kurds, the denial of detentions by the government, the harassment and acts of terror against Kurdish politicians, lawyers and human rights workers. It is attempting to divert attention from its use of chemical weapons against Kurdish gerîlas, and the inhumane refusal to allow proper burial to gerîlas. It is attempting to divert attention from the Turkish government's declaration of war against all Kurds.
Once again, I refer everyone to the 14 characteristics of fascism.