Erdoğan not only a leader, but our destiny

By: Hasan Öztürk*

The Justice and Development Party (AK Party) was there, the Republican’s People Party (CHP) was there and the Nationalist Movement Party (MHP) was also present. Among the parties represented in Parliament, the Peoples’ Democratic Party (HDP) was not there. However, it was not difficult at all to understand why the HDP was not invited to the meeting.

A party that could not put a distance between terrorism and itself would of course have nothing to do at a meeting where messages of “unity and solidarity” would be given.

And yet the nation was there…

The political leaders who spoke at the meeting in Yenikapı emphasized “unity and solidarity” with care. MHP leader Devlet Bahçeli deserved a standing ovation for his speech. It was clear, lyric and coherent. There are a lot of points I disagree with CHP leader Kemal Kılıçdaroğlu… Especially his sentences that start with “to strengthen the parliamentary system…” However, his participation there, a few times his calling FETÖ a terrorist organization, giving a message of unity was important.

We gained a good prime minister

As for Prime Minister Binali Yıldırım… Mr. Binali is surprising everyone!

Yıldırım answered the questions, “Why was the 65th government established?” “Why was Binali Yıldırım chosen the chair of the AK Party and prime minister?” by surprising all. We were already familiar with him, but his harmonious, dedicated and coherent work with President Recep Tayyip Erdoğan, after the recent coup attempt and the days that followed, deserve appreciation.

Especially, he knows how to walk one step behind the leader, never regarding it as a burden. His calm and determined stance is very nice.

One of the good aspects of the July 15 coup attempt is:

It gave us a good prime minister!

When Mr. Binali stepped on the stage later in the evening, after seeing the impatience of the people who have been waiting under the sun for eight hours, keeping his speech short, he said, “I know you have been impatiently waiting for our president.” He then left the stage, which is too gracious a gesture not to note.

When it came to calling the Chief of General Staff Gen. Hulusi Akar to the stage, I think our president is very skillful “in healing the wounds.”

After the shock of the first days, our president gave statements to protect both the country’s intelligence organization and the Turkish Armed Forces (TSK).

And by presenting Akar to those millions of people, he healed a wound.

I am not going to give a summary of our president’s speech. It was not only the 5 million people in Yenikapı, the tens of millions of people who filled the squares in the other cities, but also those in front of the televisions who hung on our president’s words. But I can’t keep myself from saying that when he appears on the stage and meets with the people, a two-way communication starts.

When the people see him and hear his voice, they feel resurrected and he feels resurrected when he sees the protective and embracing attitude of the people… And it is a gain for Turkey. Our president is not only a leader but our destiny. His destiny is the destiny of this people. Yenikapı is a new milestone! Yenikapı is the new gate of Turkey. The gate of the feeling of “us” is Yenikapı.

Yenikapı, the gate of new horizons

My years of youth passed by listening to the “1979 Sultanahmet Rally” that our elders attended. After that, during the headscarf protests and hunger strikes in 1987/88, I was always at the squares and in front of schools. What’s next is known… Sometimes as a requirement of my job, my thoughts and belief, I have always been at the squares.

But I have never witnessed such a meeting as enormous as the one in Yenikapı… Something as great as that day… Something as tremendous as that.

I have not witnessed it, but has anyone else? No!

I do not know whether world history ever witnessed such a day…

Turkish history did not.

I have never before heard, seen, nor experienced a meeting where such a crowd was present, such a contribution, where all political parties were represented… Where a chief of General Staff spoke…


Before 2 p.m. the meeting area was full… Moreover, all the roads going to Yenikapı saw tremendous enthusiasm. However all the rivers flow into the sea… just like that… All the colors of Turkey flowed into Yenikapı just as the river flows into the sea.

Vatan Avenue was almost jammed at the Mausoleum; people rushed to Yenikapı.

People from Zeytinburnu, Yedikule rushed to Yenikapı.

People from Sirkeci, Sarayburnu rushed to Yenikapı.

From Kadıköy, Üsküdar, Sarıyer, Silivri, Yalova and Kocaeli people flowed to Yenikapı.

A gigantic nation holding the red flags in their hands, chanting “Allahu akbar” (God is the greatest) flowed to Yenikapı.

Everywhere was Yenikapı…

Every city was Istanbul….

All of us are Recep Tayyip Erdoğan…

All of us were united…

We were.

To take its place in the world history, we witnessed a big meeting that was filled with messages of unity that will take their place in Turkey’s history.

We were not only in Yenikapı but in all the squares of Turkey… There were perhaps 30 million of us or more…

All of us were one, all of us were “us.” We were all Turkey!

Only Turkey? No! The oppressed people were in the squares as well… from Africa to Europe, from the Balkans to Asia…

Even to FETÖ’s cave in Pennsylvania!

A nation woke up. A nation became resurrected.

They advanced on us… We strangled them with our bare hands!

Will they come again? Of course they can…

If they come, we will strangle them with our bare hands.

My brother Özcan Öztürk posted a tweet last night: “Our nation internalized martyrdom and becoming a veteran so much that they are almost eager for FETÖ to strike again so they can reach those ranks.”

This is the situation!

This great nation resisted bullets, bombs, tanks, planes, helicopters, tyrants, terrorists in uniform, FETÖ’s pawn and superior mind that night saying, “If I die, I will be a martyr. If I survive, I will be a veteran.”

As if that was not enough, they made history once again in Yenikapı and united; all together they became Turkey!

*Hasan Öztürk is a Turkish columnist. He writes columns for Yeni Şafak Turkısh newspaper.
               (Published in Yeni Şafak on Tuesday, August 9, 2016)