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-   -   Help cry for freedom of Turkey (http://www.rangefinderforum.com/forums/showthread.php?t=133346)

smbilgin 06-01-2013 03:57

Help cry for freedom of Turkey
 
Dear RFFers,

This is not a photographic topic, yet I'll share a lot of photos.

It's been 5 days since the resistance began in Istanbul. The government stated that one of the last green parts in Istanbul (Gezi Parkı / Taksim Square) will be demolished and converted to a shopping mall. The resistance started to protect the trees but now turned into a freedom cry against the dictatorship of the prime minister, Recep Tayyip Erdogan.

Police attacks the people to kill, not to stop them. It is said at least 3 people have been killed and around 1000 injured. But none of them can be confirmed, because press in Turkey shows nothing, police blocked the 3G connection and the whole internet is about to be cut.

Workers, students, socialists, democrats, liberals, football clubs fans, artists, feminists, secularists, Turkish people, Kurdish people, everyone who believes that we can all live together fight back to this fascist dictator today in Turkey and ask your help. Just spread the word. Let the world know that we are not alone...

Some photos can be followed here. But let me warn you. They are not pleasant. Not at all...

http://occupygezipics.tumblr.com

#OccupyGezi

Roger Hicks 06-01-2013 04:08

Anyone who cannot see himself or herself in the victims and protesters lacks all imagination and sympathy. It sounds crazy to criticize these pictures as if they were just happy-snaps or self-indulgent 'fine art' but many of them, are very, very moving indeed. This is a great illustration of how photography transcends national and linguistic borders.

As you say, many are not pleasant. But they are important. I was near tears much of the time. Thank you for the link.

R.

RichL 06-01-2013 04:22

I get so sick and tired of seeing pictures like this. When oh when are governments going to figure out that it is much better to listen to the people and correct problems than to beat gas and shoot them.

Best of luck to all of you.

kaiwasoyokaze 06-01-2013 05:46

this is definitely not Huzun... i can totally sympathize with anger at the destruction of a city's heritage just to put up another soulless shopping mall. However, this is insane with the reactions from Erdogan. Bring back a more humane military that seeks stability rather than bloodshed.

my heart goes out to the Istanbullus'

smbilgin 06-01-2013 07:25

As of 18.00 (local time), Taksim Square was taken back by over a million protestors and more people are coming. Waiting for the good news from other resistant cities all over the country...

smbilgin 06-01-2013 07:29


smbilgin 06-01-2013 07:46

Taksim Square as of now...


jonmanjiro 06-01-2013 07:53

Amazing! Good to see the people rise up to protest greedy politicians. I expect there's a lot more than just a shopping mall in place of a park on people's minds.

RichL 06-01-2013 08:41

Congratulations on the police pulling back. It is also good to see that part of the business community is, at least in a minor way, supporting the protests by renouncing the extent of force being used by the police.

smbilgin 06-01-2013 09:19

Thanks everyone...

New pics are added to the link.

http://occupygezipics.tumblr.com

Jon, believe me, there is much more than just trees and shopping malls.

* The government arranged an attack on Hatay / Reyhanlı recently, killed tens of people. They blamed Bashar Assad, in order to declare war on Syria.

* The PM called "drunk" to the founder of the republic, Atatürk

* They limited of alcohol sales

* They named the new bosphorous bridge "Yavuz Sultan Selim" last week. He was the most brutal Sultan in ottoman empire who even killed his own son along with more than 40.000 innocent citizens.

* They stated they are going to demolish Gezi Park in Taksim Square in order to build a shopping mall. They started cutting the trees.

So the trees are now symbol of our lifestyle. But the reaction is for much more than just a shopping mall. People say "enough" and will keep saying this from now on.

taylan 06-01-2013 14:37

Hi to everyone
I just manage to come home. Protest still going on. I am fallowing protest in Turkey near a decade and I never saw such think. I am used to tear gas and generally I am not using a gas mask but this time I felt to need for it. Also it is reported that police are started to use a different gas. There is a violent clash around Beşiktaş now. Actually at evening time protesters started to celebrate their victories at Taksim. But now everything is changed. As I said clashes are going on Beşiktaş. Moreover clashes are spread around Turkey.
Just saw the topic and want to give some brief information from the field (Sorry I couldn't read whole thread). I am exhausted and I need to sleep for tomorrow.

BTW Everything changed so rapidly and I couldn't stop by my local film dealer. Guess what? I had no film during action. And guess again? I don't have a digital camera. I must be an idiot. Nevertheless I am in the action and at least recording it in my mind.

kaiwasoyokaze 06-01-2013 16:27

Quote:

Originally Posted by smbilgin (Post 2151379)

* The PM called "drunk" to the founder of the republic, Atatürk


I guess its not like the 50s to 70s where the military will step in and 'clean house' in the parliament like they did before?

smbilgin 06-02-2013 00:00

We don't want military's intervention. Military will never bring freedom. The people is fighting for their own freedom.


Taylan, I am glad you OK.

Link is updated...

http://occupygezipics.tumblr.com

user237428934 06-02-2013 00:54

I took this phot last year in Istanbul and I think it was in Gezi Park near Taksim square.


Tired of waiting for free hugs von tom.w.bn auf Flickr

It seems that there is no room for free hugs at the moment. Wishing the best to our friends in Istanbul

smbilgin 06-02-2013 01:38

Hi Tom,

Yes that is Gezi Park. Protestors are cleaning the park at the moment. So there will be always free hug no matter what...

Thank you all and we hope to host you guys once more in İstanbul once we save it.

user237428934 06-02-2013 04:57

Ok. Resolved.

kaiwasoyokaze 06-02-2013 05:46

Quote:

Originally Posted by smbilgin (Post 2151784)
We don't want military's intervention. Military will never bring freedom. The people is fighting for their own freedom.


Taylan, I am glad you OK.

Link is updated...

http://occupygezipics.tumblr.com

while that is true, i was wondering because whenever politicians try to change or slander ataturk, the military will defend his memory and whatnot and come in on behalf of his legacy...

smbilgin 06-02-2013 07:06

Hi Tom,

It is my mistake, I opened this topic under off topic, so blaming the mods would be unfair. My bad. But if a moderator could move to a better place, it would be helpful.


Hi kaiwasoyokaze,
It used to be like that, but they put all "nationalist" military officers to prison in last several years and they control the army now. On the other hand the riot has not started because of some insult to Atatürk. This only helped to increase the number of protestors by the attendance of nationalists groups. This is now much more than that. People are now defending their way of life, their friends, their hopes, their streets. This much reaction has not been seen for a very long time. And everyone hopes that is just a beginning until we get rid of this dictator.


The situation that I can observe; Taksim is controlled by protestors now. But in Ankara clash is still going on. From yesterday evening to this morning most of the cities had a lot of small or large demonstrations and more than 900 people reported detained. Injured people are countless. There are rumours that several death but we cannot get confirmation.

We will see what is next.

Thank you all.

smbilgin 06-02-2013 13:31

As of 00.30 local time, almost every city is under tear gas now and people are still crying: "Shoulder to shoulder against facism!"

Roger Hicks 06-02-2013 13:38

Thanks very much for keeping us informed. I won't say I look forward to more news -- such news is never encouraging or to be looked forward to -- but I shall be grateful when you do it. As will many others.

Is there anything concrete that those outside Turkey can do to help? Or can we offer only moral support, to remind you that many outside Turkey admire the resistance?

Thanks again,

R.

smbilgin 06-02-2013 22:03

Hi Roger,

Thank you for the support.

I want to add something. Please do not confuse this with Arabic Spring actions. Because this is nothing like it. People here don't fight against a dictator in order to build a worse islamic one. People are resisting to defend their freedom. This is neither a nationalist action nor islamic. These rebellious are willing to unit with the rest of the world's free people and waiting for their support.

We hear that there are a lot of demonstrations all around the world to support Turkey. This is very encouraging. International community reaction is quite important to stop this violance.

I want to thank all of you who understand us and support us.

Link is updated...

http://occupygezipics.tumblr.com

morback 06-02-2013 23:05

Quote:

Originally Posted by taylan (Post 2151565)
Hi to everyone
I just manage to come home. Protest still going on. I am fallowing protest in Turkey near a decade and I never saw such think. I am used to tear gas and generally I am not using a gas mask but this time I felt to need for it. Also it is reported that police are started to use a different gas. There is a violent clash around Beşiktaş now. Actually at evening time protesters started to celebrate their victories at Taksim. But now everything is changed. As I said clashes are going on Beşiktaş. Moreover clashes are spread around Turkey.
Just saw the topic and want to give some brief information from the field (Sorry I couldn't read whole thread). I am exhausted and I need to sleep for tomorrow.

BTW Everything changed so rapidly and I couldn't stop by my local film dealer. Guess what? I had no film during action. And guess again? I don't have a digital camera. I must be an idiot. Nevertheless I am in the action and at least recording it in my mind.

Same thing here Taylan. I ran out of film last night so I'm using my iphone until it runs out of battery. I really wish I had a proper digital right now. But there is no shortage of photographers on the streets.

I was in Besiktas with Simon yesterday, from the peaceful time until the end of the clashes. I have to say it's getting more violent, protesters are getting more determined, but you see all kinds if people on the streets, young and old, mothers, fathers, couples, friends, everything. It's amazing to see the solidarity.

I don't think Taksim saw action last night, but barricades have been reinforced. Hotel are offering their lobbies for people to rest and charge their phones, free food and drinks are being distributed...

I'm getting used to the teargas too. We all are. On my ride back this morning, the cab driver had to open his window. My clothes smelled too much like teargas for him. He had trouble keeping his eyes open.

A dialog needs to open, not this electoral monologue.

smbilgin 06-02-2013 23:24

Hi Martin,

I am glad you and Simon are OK.

Today, on 19.00 at Taksim, there will be again regrouping. If you join, please be careful.

By the way, if someone can move this topic to a more noticable place, I will be very glad.

Another info; starting from yesterday, Anonymous started hacking governmental web sites and communication channels. Love you guys...

jonmanjiro 06-02-2013 23:43

I just moved the thread to the members forum. If you'd prefer it somewhere else let me know!

Roger Hicks 06-03-2013 01:11

Quote:

Originally Posted by smbilgin (Post 2152305)
. . . I want to add something. Please do not confuse this with Arabic Spring actions. Because this is nothing like it. People here don't fight against a dictator in order to build a worse islamic one. People are resisting to defend their freedom. This is neither a nationalist action nor islamic. These rebellious are willing to unit with the rest of the world's free people and waiting for their support. . . .

Even the so-called 'Arab spring' is not as monolithic and simplistic as many would have us believe. The big difference between Turkey and the 'Arab Spring', as far as I can see, is that in Turkey a secular republic is being furtively Islamized by someone who wants to turn the country into a copy of pre-Arab Spring Islamist states, with Islamist law and a 'strong-man' leader. In other words, Erdogan is going directly against the tide of history.

A question, though. The BBC and several other media keep saying that it's mainly younger people who support the protests. The pictures in your link suggest that it's much wider than this. It is the sight of old, bearded men like myself, bloodied by the police, which makes me think that support for the movement is all but universal among secularists of all ages. Am I correct?

Thanks again,

R.

OurManInTangier 06-03-2013 01:25

Having been in Istanbul a little over a year ago with the RFF EuroMeet and finding it such a beautiful place with people that are so friendly, open and warm I'm both concerned and heartened by recent events. Concerned for the safety and welfare of the people, heartened by their solidarity and actions.

To my friends, both old and new, in Istanbul stay safe and sensible in these dangerous times and for those of you using your photographic skills at this time to document what is happening I wish you the very best of luck and reiterate; stay safe - your stories will only emerge if you are there to tell them.

Sincerely
Simon

smbilgin 06-03-2013 01:25

Thank you Jon for moving the topic.


Roger, you are right. It is much wider than only youth now. Fathers, mothers, even kids are on the streets now. People who can go to the streets and resist are behind the barricades. People who cannot, they switch on and off their house lights all night to support to protestors. Shop owners provide free water, lemon, milk and food to the protestors. Every public buildings are becaming local hospitals. Nurses, doctors, medical students are voluntarily helping people on the streets or converted local hospitals. But we hear from different locations they are out of medical supplies. On the other hand, god damn tear and pepper gas never run out. Anyway, people are getting used to it quickly.

Anyway. Thank you all...

NazgulKing 06-03-2013 01:29

Quote:

Originally Posted by Roger Hicks (Post 2152369)
Even the so-called 'Arab spring' is not as monolithic and simplistic as may would have us believe. The big difference between Turkey and the 'Arab Spring', as far as I can see, is that in Turkey a secular republic is being furtively Islamized by someone who wants to turn the country into a copy of pre-Arab Spring Islamist states, with Islamist law and a 'strong-man' leader. In other words, Erdogan is going directly against the tide of history.

A question, though. The BBC and several other media keep saying that it's mainly younger people who support the protests. The pictures in your link suggest that it's much wider than this. It is the sight of old, bearded men like myself, bloodied by the police, which makes me think that support for the movement is all but universal among secularists of all ages. Am I correct?

Thanks again,

R.

I think this is incorrect. As far as I can see, Erdogan has not imposed an outright copy of Sharia law, nor have there been explicit plans to do so yet.

However, there are definitely adherents to "secularism" as per what Atarturk espoused. However, I wouldn't be so quick to even support these guys because one of the things they do support is the denial of all the Armenian Genocide, and also the various pogroms inflicted against the Greeks etc. Rather these people are Turkish Nationalists, with all the problems with Nationalism to go with it.

Roger Hicks 06-03-2013 01:34

Quote:

Originally Posted by NazgulKing (Post 2152385)
I think this is incorrect. As far as I can see, Erdogan has not imposed an outright copy of Sharia law, nor have there been explicit plans to do so yet.

However, there are definitely adherents to "secularism" as per what Atarturk espoused. However, I wouldn't be so quick to even support these guys because one of the things they do support is the denial of all the Armenian Genocide, and also the various pogroms inflicted against the Greeks etc. Rather these people are Turkish Nationalists, with all the problems with Nationalism to go with it.

That's why I said "furtively": the key word is "yet".

I fully understand your point about the unsavoury side of Turkish nationalism, especially vis-a-vis Armenia and pogroms. But my understanding (again, correct me if I'm wrong) is that Erdogan and his merry men are not exactly progressive on these points either: they merely have a different idea of what aggressive Turkish nationalism should look like.

Cheers,

R.

morback 06-03-2013 01:55

Quote:

Originally Posted by Roger Hicks (Post 2152369)

A question, though. The BBC and several other media keep saying that it's mainly younger people who support the protests. The pictures in your link suggest that it's much wider than this. It is the sight of old, bearded men like myself, bloodied by the police, which makes me think that support for the movement is all but universal among secularists of all ages. Am I correct?

Thanks again,

R.

Last night I found an unprotected elderly gentlemen in the smoke without any protection. Some other kid and I took him to the back. Severe exposure to the gas makes you choke and you can't open your eyes. You think you will faint, you just want to lie down.

The young people run around and build barricades. They are the physically active ones and the more photogenic ones. The "older" people chant and cheer when the young throw the grenades back or away. A lot of supports comes from homes directly, through shelter or handing out food and drinks and "losyon", or the mix that makes tear gas bearable. Also through banging pots and pans from their windows.

After the clashes we walked through Taksim. Simon has pictures of families sleeping under big blankets under the trees in Gezi.




smbilgin 06-03-2013 02:24

Let me clarify one thing for everyone who may confuse.

The people who resist on the streets today believes that every nations and races are brothers and sisters. We accept Greeks and Armenians as our brothers and sisters along with all other nations. The denials and hate policy is government business, not people's.

Yes there are a lot of nationalist people who resist on the streets but at least they are not facist. And none of them have problems with Greeks and Armenians.

Please do not confuse these people with the idiot facists.

Bill58 06-03-2013 03:26

I'm certainly no expert on Turkey, but my impression is the general populace there is better off freedom wise than in the majority of the middle east. They have no ayatollahs, sharia law, high unemployment, class/ gender discrimination, summary executions and other madness.

However, that is not to say they don't have genuine complaints. I hope they can someday realize freedom and opportunity.

jbielikowski 06-03-2013 03:34

I hope I'll be able to get there soon, OTOH I hope it will end before that.

Question is what will happen till next elections, and its two more years. Erdoğan wont give up easily.

jonmanjiro 06-03-2013 03:58

Incredible scenes coming out of Turkey like these below.

Russia Today is one media outlet I know of reporting on what's happening (more images here).




https://twitter.com/VOT99/status/341...582528/photo/1

Roger Hicks 06-03-2013 04:00

Quote:

Originally Posted by smbilgin (Post 2152410)
Let me clarify one thing for everyone who may confuse.

The people who resist on the streets today believes that every nations and races are brothers and sisters. We accept Greeks and Armenians as our brothers and sisters along with all other nations. The denials and hate policy is government business, not people's.

Yes there are a lot of nationalist people who resist on the streets but at least they are not facist. And none of them have problems with Greeks and Armenians.

Please do not confuse these people with the idiot facists.

Sorry: I did not mean for one moment to conflate the extreme nationalists with the vast majority of those who are protesting. All I'm saying is that to pretend that Erdogan and his chums are in some way progressive is to be overly kind to him.

Cheers,

R.

Roger Hicks 06-03-2013 04:09

Quote:

Originally Posted by Bill58 (Post 2152423)
I'm certainly no expert on Turkey, but my impression is the general populace there is better off freedom wise than in the majority of the middle east. They have no ayatollahs, sharia law, high unemployment, class/ gender discrimination, summary executions and other madness.

However, that is not to say they don't have genuine complaints. I hope they can someday realize freedom and opportunity.

The Near East (called by Americans the Middle East) is a big place; Turkey is a huge country; and the Arab Spring hasn't taken place uniquely in the Near East. To conflate Turkey with the rest of the Near East is a bit like saying that really, Canada, the USA and Mexico are all more or less the same. Likewise, Morocco is rather different from neighbouring Algeria, to say nothing of Tunisia and Libya.

Turkey has been a secular republic since 1923, so they wouldn't have ayatollahs and Sharia law: Kemal Ataturk is one of the great men of history.

Cheers,

R.

smbilgin 06-03-2013 04:22

Thank you guys, to all of you...

Last information: Thousands of white collar people went to the biggest press organizations today in day break and protested them for censorship.

CNN Turk shows some documentary about penguins and at the same time CNN International shows clashes on the street - live. Unbelievable...

kbg32 06-03-2013 04:23

In democratic countries, politicians are elected by the people. They are the voice of the people. What then gives them the right after they are elected to act like dictators?

My wife and I were in Turkey, Istanbul 5 years ago while she was pregnant. We found it warm and inviting. We hope to return soon for extended stay with our little boy.

Roger Hicks 06-03-2013 04:31

Quote:

Originally Posted by kbg32 (Post 2152441)
In democratic countries, politicians are elected by the people. They are the voice of the people. What then gives them the right after they are elected to act like dictators?

My wife and I were in Turkey, Istanbul 5 years ago while she was pregnant. We found it warm and inviting. We hope to return soon for extended stay with our little boy.

Well, Hitler was elected...

But even if they aren't dangerous nut-cases to begin with, power often goes to politicians' heads. Generally, too, they can press a few buttons -- national security, religion, xenophobia -- that will have a disproportionate resonance with their less intelligent or informed supporters.

Cheers,

R.

MikeDimit 06-03-2013 04:37

Good luck, komshu! I do hope you will not allow to change your country as we did.


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