ANKARA – ”Freedom of belief and worship is the most important guarantee of social peace,” Turkish President Ahmet Necdet Sezer said on Monday.
Addressing the opening of 3rd meeting of the Religion Council, Sezer underlined that secularism in Turkey was enforced not with the reports prepared by some foreign elements, but with the experiences obtained in historical and social evolution of Turkey and within the perspective of reforms of Mustafa Kemal Ataturk, the Founder of Modern Turkish Republic….
Sezer said Turkey has a special position in this respect, stressing that territories of Anatolia, throughout the history, embraced people having different cultural and religious beliefs.
Sezer seems to have forgotten a few small matters like the genocide of the Armenians and the wholesale exile or forced conversion of the Greeks — both of which emptied Anatolia of millions of non-Muslims whose forefathers had been on that land for centuries. Both of these, of course, took place under the auspices of the Ataturk regime he lauds, as the cultural habits of dhimmitude combined with Turkish nationalism into a mix that was lethal for the region’s non-Muslims.
Funny how you never hear the UN calling for a “right of return” for the tens of millions of people around the globe whose historical, cultural, and familial roots are in Anatolia, and which have been utterly erased and continually denied by Kemalism.
I myself am ready to retake possession of my ancestral home there as soon as Kofi Annan gives the green light, and sends a few troops to make sure the Kemalists don’t decide on a repeat performance. Kofi, my friend, the ball’s in your court. Email me and I’ll tell you where to send the title deed and the keys.