"I told my psychiatrist that everyone hates me. He said I was being ridiculous - everyone hasn't met me yet."
~ Rodney Dangerfield.
Some people are comedians and don't even realize it. One such person is Yasar Buyukanit, who made a big speech today in Ankara, and is reported by the AP:
``Which action of the military is undemocratic?'' Buyukanit asked. ``I am a soldier, and I am carrying out the duties given to me by laws. As soldiers, we have nothing to do with politics. However, if there are those who are disturbed by our assessments on security and regime, it is up to them.''
This is hilarious! The Turkish miltary has nothing to do with politics unless there's a coup in the works--whether hard or soft--and any duties given to the military by laws, are given to it by laws that were written by generals. If a country has a constitution written by generals, a constitution which serves to protect the state from the people, then that country is not a democracy. Therefore, every action the military undertakes according to such a constitution is, by its very nature, undemocratic.
Yasar Pasha is also worried about the Islamist threat, but he doesn't mention that is was the pashas who created the Islamist threat by their deal with the Islamists back in the early 1980's. Ostensibly this was to help contain the threat of Soviet expansion, the threat of Islamist expansion from Iran, and, especially, to counter the politicization of the Kurdish people. The pashas agreed to the Turkish-Islamist synthesis, believing that, through this means, they could control both the Islamist threat and Kurdish resistance. Plus it offered the potential to be a cheap way of combatting the PKK, so much so that Tansu Ciller admitted publicly that she had signed the order to give weapons to Turkish Hezbollah from military installations in Turkish-occupied Kurdistan.
But it got out of hand, and the first sign of this was in 2000, in Istanbul, in a shootout with Huseyin Velioglu, the head of Turkish Hezbollah. The pashas know it is getting out of hand again and this is one of the reasons why they have been in a frenzy in the last week, with Ilker Basbug, current Land Forces commander and heir apparent, kicking off the campaign, followed by Air Forces commander, Faruk Comert, and then Naval Forces commander, Yener Karahanoglu. All of this was orchestrated in preparation for Grand Poo-Bah Buyukanit's speech today.
Another factor contributing to the pashas hysterics, were the recent remarks by EU envoy, Hansjoerg Kretschmer, who said, "Security organs [are] somehow playing their own games, outside the control of the civilian authorities, disrespecting the legal and institutional order."
But it's all a plot, as Buyukanit hinted: "Buyukanit on Monday accused the EU of having 'secret agendas' regarding Turkey, but did not elaborate." That's right, man, they are all out to get you.
The crowning glory of the last couple of weeks of disaster for the pashas came on Saturday, when Murat Karayilan announced the PKK ceasefire and then it went into effect on Sunday. HPG has already posted the war balance for the month of September, as follows:
HPG's Commandership Headquarters published the war balance for September. The war balance includes numbers from clashes with both the Turkish and the Iranian army.
Numbers from the war balance:
* Turkish military operations: 66
* Turkish and Iranian military operations: 3
* Clashes during these operations: 41
* Turkish soldiers killed: 64, of them 8 Turkish officers and 2 village guards.
* Turkish vehicles destroyed: 19
* Martyred HPG guerrillas: 13
* Confiscated materials: 4
* One soldier (Kurdish origin) were killed by the Turkish army.
All of these disasters have apparently prompted the laughing Foreign Minister, Abdullah Gul, to try his hand at comedy, from Zaman (but only because it's so funny, too) :
Asked “Will Turkey enter Iraq to control PKK?” Gul replied, “If our friends don’t help us, we will do the job ourselves.”
Yeah, you better believe it! They will do the job themselves, just like they've been doing the job themselves for more than twenty years, and they have yet to accomplish anything. They think that by applying the same, useless military remedy to Kurdish resistance, that they will finally accomplish something, but this is delusional thinking. The only remedy that will work, a political solution, is still not on the table, as we know from the statements of PKK Coordinator and member of Lockheed Martin's Board of Directors, Joseph Ralston.
There is a point at which hubris and stupidity, and even comedy, become appalling. No one need bother to ask, "Are we there yet?"
ARTICLE OF NOTE: Newsweek has an article on the PKK, which came out over the weekend. It's not too bad, but the biggest problem it has is that there is no context, something that is typical of these general information-type articles. Those who are outside the information loop on the Kurdish people read something like this and they must get the idea that PKK just happened, as if Serok Apo woke up one day and thought to himself, "What the hell! I'll form a group and we'll go fight."
Context is necessary to answer the very pertinent question: "WHY?"
WHY did PKK get started? WHY does it still fight? WHY do its members and supporters believe in the fight? WHY are so many Kurdish parents proud to let their children go to the mountains? WHY are şehids honored?
Those questions should be asked not only in a military sense, but a political one as well. The political side of PKK has always been the preeminent side.
Context is everything, especially in a situation as important as this. Contrary to the widely popular saying, shit does not just happen.
Newsweek also reports on the American University that will be constructed in Silêmanî beginning next March. It is the dream of prominent Başûrî politician, Barham Salih.