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A famous Serb nation­al­ist mur­der­er pro­nounced the reverse of this speech, thir­ty years ago, con­cern­ing a most ancient dis­pute, in which the Ottoman were stake­hold­ers, called “the black­bird bat­tle”, bet­ter known as “Koso­vo Pol­je”.

The bat­tle, in 1389, is both praised to the heav­ens by Ottomanaical Turkey since it is pur­port­ed to have sealed the Ottoman Empire’s dom­i­na­tion over the Balka­ns, and para­dox­i­cal­ly, cel­e­brat­ed as a vic­to­ry by Serb nation­al­ism, since the bones of the heroes would mark the ter­ri­to­ry, the way a tiger does, as it were.

But why should I talk to you about this old sto­ry? Well, because it does not stop flut­ter­ing and bab­bling like the black bird, and also haunts our Turk­ish polit­i­cal class, as a backdrop.

The alliance between Otto­ma­nia and nation­al­ism some­times goes search­ing for gas at the Greek neigh­bor’s, some­times for olives in Syr­ia, and some­times sends janis­saries in pho­ny beards to Lybia or Azer­baïd­jan to sup­port what­ev­er suits it. But it will soon have to hide the bones of its vic­tims, so vis­i­ble are they as they pile up. And all that in our name, for the great­ness of the home­laaaaand. And thus, of the naaaaa­tion, of course.

This is why Europe should re-open the his­to­ry books, as I did.

Here I am talk­ing like the Reis when he insults the French Macron.

But, in fact, he is not wrong in send­ing every­one back to the past. Except, he does­n’t do so him­self, and stops on the sto­ries he learned in school and which are sup­posed to pro­vide the foun­da­tions of “the Turk’s strength”. Europe plays at being an ostrich and Erdoğan re-writes what­ev­er suits him, just as his pre­de­ces­sors did. This is not promis­ing for the rest of the program.

You will tell me “Yes but the oppo­si­tion will not accept this exter­nal aggres­sive­ness on the part of Turkey”. The oppo­si­tion? The one in prison or the one who will all end up there, at the rate things are going? Ah, no doubt you mean Turkey’s flab­by bel­ly… Well, the kemal­ists are fine with the busi­ness of the bone and of the gas in the neigh­bor’s place. They fol­low like sniff­ing dogs… or grey wolves.

I read in Euro­pean head­lines that what Erdo­gan is doing is also a pre­ven­tive inter­nal response to what the eco­nom­ic and san­i­tary crises are pro­vok­ing. I must say that the pre­ven­tive works like a mir­a­cle since the cap­ture of Afrin in Syr­ia, then the inva­sion, then the unceas­ing bomb­ings… The flab­by bel­ly digests all that and asks for seconds.

So why should the AKP hold back? This is also the moment to hit the HDP even hard­er, to destroy all its means of expres­sion, to arrest yet more elect­ed mem­bers, jour­nal­ists, sup­port­ers… The flab­by bel­ly looks else­where, eyes turned toward the exter­nal ene­mies of the homelaaaaand.

How many times will it have to be writ­ten before your “Turkey spe­cial­ists” under­stand that what is hap­pen­ing here is not a bat­tle between alter­nat­ing poli­cies, an elec­toral chess game. No, that Istan­bul has gone to the side of the flab­by bel­ly does not mean a resur­gence of an oppo­si­tion to nation­al­ism and big­otry. If that were the case, peo­ple would know about it. Since the last of the coup d’é­tat, those have not ceased to nation­al­ize togeth­er and to serve as a crutch to fascism.

And then, the Greek ene­my comes along to com­plete the pic­ture. Even the most repub­li­can of the kemal­ists who claim to be sec­u­lar, saved from the army purges in the begin­ning of the years 2000, are ready to nav­i­gate and march as one against exter­nal ene­mies, those fiends occu­py­ing our Ottoman ceme­ter­ies, be they on land or in the sea.

So if Macron wants to do a repeat of the Dar­d­anelles, I sug­gest he check what fol­lowed and what pre­ced­ed 1915.

But I seem to know that con­cern­ing Gal­lipoli, just as for the field, there also, for some there were red­wings, and for oth­ers there were black birds.


Translation by Renée Lucie Bourges 
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